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10 Books That Will Open New Windows in Your Mind

Learn about life, psychology, and money


10 Books That Will Open New Windows in Your Mind

Don’t let your mind stagnate!


Once you stop learning, evolving, and growing, your mind will start losing its power.


There is a direct link between pursuing higher studies and low chances of Alzheimer’s. Why?


Because people who keep studying keep using their brains. It becomes stronger and smarter.


Here is a booklist to keep your mind fresh and new!



10 Books That Will Open New Windows in Your Mind

His manuscripts were taken away from him, but that didn’t stop him.


Frankl was already working on his theories when he and his family were made prisoners and sent to concentration camps. His manuscripts were destroyed.


In captivity, he survived by having his eyes set on his goals. He wanted to meet his family and share his work with the world.


He kept writing on whatever paper scraps he could find and hid them from guards.


After 11 months of being freed, he gave 3 public lectures in Vienna. Sadly though, his parents and wife didn’t make it alive.


This book is the English translation of his lectures.


“Those who rebel against their fate — that is, against circumstances that cannot help and which they certainly cannot change — have not grasped the meaning of fate.”

He focuses on finding meaning.


Joy can be taken from someone’s life as was the case for Frankl and his fellow prisoners. But the meaning can offer hope and perseverance.


The insights in this book will make you evaluate dark times in your life with a new lens.



10 Books That Will Open New Windows in Your Mind

An MIT professor’s thoughts on AI.


Life 3.0 is a comprehensive book. Divided into eight chapters, it covers the development of AI technology, the issues for mankind, and future scenarios.


Some people are new to understanding AI and some already know a bit about the AI tech scene. This book can be enjoyed by both.


It needs the reader to be involved because of the various concepts and themes being discussed.


“If we don’t know what we want we’re less likely to get it.”

The writer discusses his view about the advent of thinking machines. He also invites us to ponder on various issues.


He urges humans to be clear on what they want from AI technology.


Tegmark also backs up his claims with multiple references.


“The more automated society gets and the more powerful the attacking AI becomes, the more devastating cyberwarfare can be.”

This book should be in the library of every computer and software student.




10 Books That Will Open New Windows in Your Mind

Stop blaming your phone!


It’s easy to blame your gadgets for messing with your productivity.


Who is to be blamed?


YOU.


Who, me? Yes you, says Nir Eyal in his book.


“Being indistractable means striving to do what you say you will do.”

Even if we give up all our electronics, our brains will come up with new excuses to procrastinate. For example boredom or tiredness.


Learn about your internal triggers. Note them down. What do you feel when you give up on tasks? Address the underlying issues.


“Distraction is always an unhealthy escape from reality”

As for external triggers like email notifications and phones, hack them back. How?

Get rid of clutter on your desktop and phone. Uninstall useless apps. Change notification settings for each app. Don’t send unnecessary emails.


Change your thoughts about yourself. If you believe that you have self-control, you will be able to exercise it.


If you believe you don’t, you won’t be able to control yourself.


This book will help you manage your mind’s focus and concentration for the better.




10 Books That Will Open New Windows in Your Mind

Let’s peek into the future.


This book is a continuation of the author’s previous work, ‘Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind.’


In Sapiens, Harari took us down the road of history. In this book, he takes us to the future.


“Fiction isn’t bad. It is vital.”

Storytelling and language were the two skills that allowed humans to reach the top. The writer analyzes that due to storytelling, our intelligence increased further.


This also allowed us to create belief systems whether religions or other ideologies.

He makes the case for ‘humanism’ and how it is superior to the religious systems.

Humanism considers humans in control of their actions.


Harari thinks that humanism will soon become a spirituality.


He also touches on the threat of technology and what should be done to minimize it.


“In pursuit of health, happiness and power, humans will gradually change first one of their features and then another, and another, until they will no longer be human.”

Harari predicts the rise of an even better human, Homo Deus, or “human god”.


An interesting read, which will make you think about a lot of things, especially the future of this world.




10 Books That Will Open New Windows in Your Mind

A young man questions, a philosopher answers.


Alfred Adler is a psychologist from the 19th century.


To present his ideas to the world, the authors wrote this book in the form of a dialogue between a youth and a philosopher.


The most controversial point in the book is perhaps the view of trauma.


“We cannot alter objective facts. But subjective interpretations can be altered as much as one likes. And we are inhabitants of a subjective world.”

This book argues that we have the power to view our past in different ways. It’s up to us, what meaning we give to our past.


We cannot just trace the reason for everything in our lives to past negative experiences.

Similarly, Adler’s ideas propagate that we own the remote to our emotions and happiness.


“Your unhappiness cannot be blamed on your past or your environment.”

Some might not like this book because it places responsibility on the reader. I think it gives us tough love to help us take charge of our lives.




10 Books That Will Open New Windows in Your Mind

A neuroscientist’s journey of understanding trauma.


The author is a neuroscientist who has worked in trauma therapy for many years.

He uses his own experiences along with scientific studies to teach us about trauma and healing.


“We have learned that trauma is not just an event that took place sometime in the past; it is also the imprint left by that experience on mind, brain, and body.”

Kolk describes the basic anatomy of trauma and which parts of the brain are affected. He also explains how this leads to changes in the rest of the body.


The writer also tells us about the similarities and differences in PTSD patients like war veterans and childhood abuse victims.


Child victims are continually failed by medical and education systems, according to the author.


Kolk also takes us down the history of medical understanding of trauma.


“Trauma victims cannot recover until they become familiar with and befriend the sensations in their bodies.”

In the end, the writer traces trauma from causes to treatments like yoga and EMDR.




10 Books That Will Open New Windows in Your Mind

Dealing with death.


This book is a 1974 Pulitzer winner.


We are in denial of our immortality. We want to live forever.


In this book, Ernest Becker explores death from the view of psychology and philosophy.

He also tells us about how various cultures and societies deal with death.


“Of all things that move man, one of the principal ones is his terror of death.”

In a bid to live long through their legacy, human beings indulge in “immortality projects”, according to the writer.


In the past belief in God and religion helped us overcome the anxiety about our inevitable demise. The rise of science means that such belief has broken down.


“Man lives by lying to himself about himself and about his world…”

What to do now?


Becker suggests taking the spiritual part of religions and uniting it with science and rationality.


This will help man face death.


This book will provide a fascinating view of not only death but also human psychology and behavior.




10 Books That Will Open New Windows in Your Mind

Win at life by understanding money.


Being on top of finances is one of the most important skills as an adult.

But how?


This book will help. It doesn’t go about money the popular way i.e. invest here, or invest there.


It discusses human psychology regarding money. Why do we buy posh stuff? We want to seem respectable.


“The point is that the ceiling of social comparison is so high that virtually no one will ever hit it.”

Try being kind, Housel says.


Using various paradigms of how our mind affects our buying choices, Housel helps us see reality.


He talks about the role of chance or luck in someone’s financial success.


The writer also talks about the power of compounding. And how it made Warren Jeff rich.


“The hardest financial skill is getting the goalpost to stop moving.”

I like the fact that this book also touches on the importance of gratitude and the vice of greed.


This book will help you think of money in a new way and improve your financial decisions.




10 Books That Will Open New Windows in Your Mind

Have we unintentionally harmed our kids?


The subject matter of this book bears some resemblance to Nassim Taleb’s ‘Antifragility’

.

Protecting kids from everything risky out there is not the right way. It leads to underdeveloped emotional and physical resilience.


I think most of us can understand what the authors mean. I mean we have all seen the rise of ‘trigger warnings’ and the increased rate of people being offended on the slightest infractions.


“Avoiding triggers is a symptom of PTSD, not a treatment for it.”

We are too comfortable with our thoughts and have adopted an us vs them mindset.

The belief that whatever we are feeling is right, is wrong. Feelings are feelings. Not objective truths.


I see weight in what the authors are saying.


“Education should not be intended to make people comfortable; it is meant to make them think.”

They talk about the impact of such approaches on college students. The children who were coddled too much have turned out to be emotionally weak adults who cannot bear disagreement.


Your mind will go ‘kaboom’ when you read this book.



10 Books That Will Open New Windows in Your Mind

‘More’ isn’t your ticket to happy land.


My mother-in-law has often lamented about today’s people not being happy with simple food. They want fancy food, like the one served at restaurants, she says.

Whereas, she and her siblings often used to have flatbread with jaggery for lunch.


She is right.


It is the choice we have today. We can order Chinese, continental, fast food, Indian, and Thai, all from our couch whenever we want.


This book focuses on the same.


The writer tells us that having more options doesn’t make us happy. In reality, it makes us increasingly dissatisfied.


“We get what we say we want, only to discover that what we want doesn’t satisfy us to the degree that we expect.”

We think a certain thing will make us feel like on top of the world. Only it doesn’t.

What to do?


Barry gives us an easy 3 step decision-making process.


  1. Outline goals.

  2. See how the options match up to your goals.

  3. Pick the winning option.


“Knowing what’s good enough requires knowing yourself and what you care about.”

The writer tells us to settle for ‘good enough’. Being an over-thinker, this is certainly something I can benefit from, in my life.


This book will open your mind’s eye to better and happier decision-making.



 

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If you enjoyed these book recommendations, check out the rest of my book lists on my blog- https://www.thenovelnest.com/blog


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