“Books are the training weights of the mind.” — Epictetus
Contents: Click a link to jump to a section below
There are currently 40+ book, essay, speech, and research summaries on this site with hopefully many more on the way.
This list on this page includes the following:
- Books I’ve read, summarized, and recommend (shown as “RECOMMENDED” in bold color)—Books that make this cut are the ones that have been life-transforming for me and that I keep coming back to and referencing.
- Books I’ve read and summarized (shown in gray color)—These books aren’t bad just because they aren’t recommended; it just means I’d start with the recommended books before them.
- Books I’m currently reading or plan to read next (shown as “CURRENTLY READING” or “READING NEXT” in bold blue color)—Always subject to change based on curiosity and what I’m working on. There is no particular order to how these books and the ones that follow in black text are listed.
You’ll find roughly 75ish books in the list below.
Why only 75ish?
I’d like to start with a little exercise that isn’t meant to be a downer—it’s meant to illustrate that we could all be a bit more intentional about what we’re reading.
Here’s the hard reality:
- None of us will read every book out there in our lifetimes. The current average lifespan in the US is 79 years old. Subtract your age from 79. Then multiply that number by the average number of books you read in a year. That’s roughly how many books you have left to read in your life.
- The number I read per year varies greatly depending on what I’m working on, so I may have somewhere between 200-500 left in my life.
But, here’s the even harder reality: We may not get the full 79 years.
Any day is a good day for a midlife crisis. After all, you never know when it will be the middle of your life. — Anonymous
In that spirit, instead of listing 200-500 books, I consciously narrowed it down to 75ish to get started on the right path. This list will give you the gist of my interest areas.
Book Recommendations & Reading List
- RECOMMENDED: The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo | Summary | Amazon
- RECOMMENDED: Voluntary Simplicity by Duane Elgin | Summary | Amazon
- The Things You Can See Only When You Slow Down by Haemin Sunim | Summary | Amazon
- Chasing Slow by Erin Loechner | Summary | Amazon
- Slow by Brooke McAlary | Summary | Amazon
- Present Over Perfect by Shauna Niequist | Summary | Amazon
- The Slow Fix by Carl Honoré | Summary | Amazon
- Simplify by Joshua Becker | Summary | Amazon
- Goodbye, Things by Fumio Sasaki | Summary | Amazon
- In Praise of Slowness by Carl Honore | Amazon
- RECOMMENDED: A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle | Summary 1, 2, 3 | Amazon
- RECOMMENDED: Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl | Summary 1, 2 | Amazon
- The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho | Summary | Amazon
- The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren | Summary | Amazon
- Find Your Why by Simon Sinek | Summary | Amazon
- The Path Made Clear by Oprah | Summary | Amazon
- Ikigai by Héctor García and Francesc Miralles | Summary | Amazon
- The Crossroads of Should and Must by Elle Luna | Summary | Amazon
- CURRENTLY READING: The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell | Amazon
- READING NEXT: Let Your Life Speak by Parker Palmer | Amazon
- The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch | Amazon
- How Will You Measure Your Life? by Clayton Christensen | Amazon
- The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron | Amazon
- Finding Your Element by Sir Ken Robinson & Lou Aronica | Amazon
- RECOMMENDED: Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu (Stephen Mitchell Version) | Summary | Amazon
- RECOMMENDED: The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer | Summary | Amazon
- The Wisdom of the Enneagram by Riso & Hudson | Summary | Amazon
- READING NEXT: Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse | Amazon
- READING NEXT: Awareness by Anthony De Mello | Amazon
- The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle | Amazon
- Freedom from the Known by Jiddu Krishnamurti | Amazon
- Letting Go by David Hawkins | Amazon
- Be Here Now by Ram Dass | Amazon
- Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda | Amazon
- I Am That by Nisargadatta Maharaj | Amazon
- Be As You Are by Sri Ramana Maharshi | Amazon or Who Am I? by Sri Ramana Maharshi | Amazon
- Spiritual Enlightenment, the Damnedest Thing by Jed McKenna | Amazon
- Inner Engineering by Sadhguru | Amazon
- The Bhagavad Gita (Eknath Easwaran Version) | Amazon
- The Upanishads (Eknath Easwaran Version) | Amazon
- The Essential Rumi by Jalal al-Din Rumi | Amazon
- RECOMMENDED: The Farther Reaches of Human Nature by Abraham Maslow | Summary 1, 2, 3, 4 | Amazon
- RECOMMENDED: This is Water by David Foster Wallace | Summary | Amazon
- The Existentialist’s Survival Guide by Gordon Marino | Summary | Amazon
- READING NEXT: As a Man Thinketh by James Allen | Amazon
- READING NEXT: Meditations by Marcus Aurelius | Amazon
- Enchiridion by Epictetus | Amazon
- On The Shortness Of Life by Seneca | Amazon or Letters from a Stoic by Seneca | Amazon
- The Book by Alan Watts | Amazon
- Walden by Henry David Thoreau | Amazon
- Memories, Dreams, Reflections by Carl Jung | Amazon
- CURRENTLY READING: The Lessons of History by Will Durant & Ariel Durant | Amazon
- Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari | Amazon
- 21 Lessons for the 21st Century by Yuval Noah Harari | Amazon
- A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson | Amazon
- Factfulness by Hans Rosling, Anna Rosling Rönnlund, Ola Rosling | Amazon
- The Ascent of Humanity by Charles Eisenstein | Amazon
- RECOMMENDED: Essentialism by Greg McKeown | Summary | Amazon
- Atomic Habits by James Clear | Summary | Amazon
- When by Daniel Pink | Summary | Amazon
- The ONE Thing by Gary Keller & Jay Papasan | Amazon
- The Goal by Eliyahu Goldratt, Jeff Cox | Amazon
- The Art of Learning by Josh Waitzkin | Amazon
- READING NEXT: Seven Brief Lessons on Physics by Carlo Rovelli | Amazon
- Proof of Heaven by Eben Alexander | Amazon
- Being Mortal by Atul Gawande | Amazon
- When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi | Amazon
- How to Change Your Mind by Michael Pollan | Amazon
- The Doors of Perception and Heaven and Hell by Aldous Huxley | Amazon
- Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth by R. Buckminster Fuller | Amazon
- The More Beautiful World Our Hearts Know Is Possible by Charles Eisenstein | Amazon
Don’t forget to check out the current 40+ book, essay, speech, and research summaries.