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15 Business Books for 2015
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Silence is Sexy
Joseph R. Sanok, MA, LLP, LPC, NCC
Joe Sanok is an ambitious results expert. He is a private practice business consultant and counselor that helps small businesses and counselors in private practice to increase revenue and have more fun! He helps owners with website design, vision, growth, and using their time to create income through being a private practice consultant.
Joe was frustrated with his lack of business and marketing skills when he left graduate school. He loved helping people through counseling, but felt that often people couldn’t find him. Over the past few years he has grown his skills, income, and ability to lead others, while still maintaining an active private practice in Traverse City, MI.
To link to Joe’s Google+ .
Here is the Transcription of This Podcast
15 Business Books for 2015
This is the Practice of the Practice Podcast with Joe Sanok, Session 73. I’m Joe Sanok, your host. Thank you so much for being with me today. What a great day I’m having. This morning, I got to be a school chaperon for my daughter’s preschool class to go see a play, and oh my gosh! I got to ride on a school bus and hang out with her and all her little buddies and watch a little play, and it was Alexander and the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day, but that was okay. I thought there were some themes in it that — I had to say to say to Lucia, he’s not listening very well, is he? Or that wasn’t a very good decision, or dentists are actually really nice. They aren’t that mean. But you know? It was really fun to be there, and I just really loved it, and it’s like today is one of my first Mondays of being full-time and got up, had some coffee with my wife and my baby daughter and then went and got to be a school chaperon and then went for a walk with my friend.
Now, it’s like one o’clock and I’m recording this podcast, and it’s like this is my new life, and so many of you were so supportive. Many of you knew that last Friday, my daughter had some heart issues and was at UFM, and her surgery went awesome. Thank you for all the support on Twitter and Facebook and in emails. We came home on Saturday, and it’s amazing what they can do in 24 hours. And she’s all fixed up and just has to have a follow-up appointment, and moving on with our life.
And so it’s like all these things just like off my shoulders, and it’s just amazing and really feeling good today, really happy about just where I’m headed in life, and yeah, life is good. I went to the ACA Conference down in Florida a couple of weeks ago, and I met so many cool people. I mean, people that I’m going to be interviewing kind of in the future here. But actually, before I get into that, today’s podcast, I forgot to say, is being sponsored by SimplePractice. SimplePractice is just an amazing practice management system.
Meeting some cool people at the American Counseling Association Conference
I got to meet Howard Spector, the guy who started it. I interviewed him for the Practice of the Practice podcast last episode. But I got to meet him in person at the conference, and just doing such a good job with SimplePractice. So if you’re looking for some kind of practice management solutions, it’s a great option to check out. And it was just fun to meet him in person and hang out for a little bit, and yeah. So super cool. Thanks for being the sponsor today.
I met so many other just cool people at the conference. I met Perry Rosenbloom from Brighter Vision. I got to finally meet Kelly and Miranda from ZynnyMe in person. Oh my gosh! We hung out every day so much, and it was just so fun. We went to Howl at the Moon, and Miranda wrote down on a piece of paper that it was my birthday. I really wanted to hear “I’m too sexy”, and so she and I and Kelly strutted the catwalk at Howl at the Moon. I’m still getting over this cough. I came down with a cough at ACA and it was just kind of a little frustrating.
But I met so many other cool people, and in the coming weeks, you’re going to hear from them. I did a bunch of podcast interviews there, like L. Allen Crosby and Gary Mayne. I did an interview with them. They’re these grad students, that are just about to graduate, and they’re just so full of energy. They’re going to be coming up in the coming weeks. Shannon Stonebrook, who has this background in marketing, turned to counselor. Evan Center and Jennifer Sneeden who are both private practice consultants, they’re just doing amazing work. They each are going to have an interview. Stephanie Adams was one of the breakout session folks talking about private practice. I got to get to know her, and she’s doing all sorts of things for new clinicians and has this whole like tribe of new clinicians that are just like Stephanie Adams lovers. They just love her so much, and it’s super cool to see her making an impact. Rob Reinhardt, I interviewed. He’s doing some killer stuff just around kind of online and digital compliance and email and all sorts of really cool things. He and Roy Huggins have really partnered at a number of different things, and you guys know Roy from previous episodes.
I got to know Tamara Duarte, who actually you guys probably haven’t heard of, but around eating issues and image issues, I swear, after interviewing here, I was like, “You have to have a podcast. You have to. You are like dis-serving the world because you don’t have a podcast.” Jessica Richards and Nikki Ross, I got to hang out with these two. They’re newer clinicians from the Florida area and kind of their whole crew. And then Frankie Valli, like jumped over a booth and like wanted to talk to me and just is such an awesome Practice of the Practice — just — I don’t even think calling him a follower is worth it. Like he is part of this community, and he and I have been emailing a ton. We didn’t get a chance to really hang out too much, but I loved getting to know him just through the short bit in between sessions.
So there were so many other people I met at this conference, but I just wanted to shout out to all these awesome people that I really enjoyed hanging out with.
But today, we’re going to be talking about a few different things. We are going to be talking about 15 books for 2015. Jamie English, who has been a loyal contributor on Practice of the Practice, has been just so involved and emails me so frequently, and she had said, “Hey, what books should we read?” and I was already thinking about doing a blog post about this, but I’m going to just do a full podcast about the 15 best books for 2015 if you want to just kick butts. So we’re going to talk about that. We’re going to talk a little bit about growing through giving and just a little bit in regards to the conference and how that kind of connects. And then we’re going to also be talking about selling sunglasses and the art of selling and all of that, and I just can’t wait to talk to you guys today.
So let me talk about this conference. So I got there a couple days early, got sick, and as you can hear, my voice is still starting to recover. It’s like I had this terrible cough, and I was like on cold medicine, and I’m like, “Did I just really pay to come to Florida to be sick and sleep in a hotel room?”
And so I just took a bunch of cold medicine, powered through it, and met some amazing people. And I had 300 of these white sunglasses that on the left side and like the Practice of the Practice blue, I had Practice of the Practice with the little chair on it. I did this last year in Hawaii also. I did the blue with white lettering. I thought I’d change it up a little bit, because doing white kind of connects with people’s outfits a little bit better.
And so tons of people had these white sunglasses, but it’s interesting. It’s like I do all this marketing and I have all these ideas, and then the moment comes when you walk up to strangers and you give away free sunglasses. And I’m like, “What do I say?” And I’d say to someone, “Would you like some sunglasses?” kind of timid. I’m like, “What is going on?” Well, finally, I landed on, “Hey, have you gotten your free sunglasses yet?” And then people would be like, “No,” and they’d be super excited like — and I’d say, “Do you want free sunglasses?” and they’d say, “Yeah!” And then I had this in to talk to them a little bit more about it.
How to leverage your networking
And I think that that’s one thing in networking, is figuring out how do you get someone to really want to talk to you versus feel like a burden that they’re being sold to? And so then they inevitably would ask, “Well, what are these sunglasses about?” and I would say, “Well, I have this website called ‘Practice of the Practice’ and we talk all about the marketing and business side of a private practice and kind of going after your own ambitious results, you know, that stuff we don’t always learn in grad school.” “Oh yeah, yeah.” And then like I’d say, “Well, where do you guys practice?” And so they might be in a nonprofit, they might have dreamt of private practice, they might be in private practice, they might have no interest in private practice, and they might be a professor, maybe. But it was just such a great way to have conversations with people, and I think my big takeaway that stands out for you is put yourself out there, but find a way that your opening kind of words can suck somebody in and not have them feel like they’re being sold to, or that you’re just trying to like get business out of them or something like that.
Growing Through Giving
So as part of that, I think that really what I observed in myself was this idea of growing through giving. And so being able to walk around and record these interviews for the podcast, I’m helping these people that maybe don’t have as large of a platform get known. So the 5,000 to 8,000 people a month that are listening to the Practice of the Practice podcast, I’m introducing you to these new people that are so interesting.
You’re discovering new voices in the private practice consulting world. You’re finding out new ways to grow your private practice. You’re hearing about books they’ve written or the pads they’re on or the things they’re passionate about. And I think what really stood out to me is that as I’ve done this for people, they then kind of pull me up as they go up too. So for example, last year, I interviewed Roy Huggins, and I interviewed him again just a couple of months ago. But Roy was kind of just starting personcenteredtech.com, and we had been going, but in this last year, he has just grown so much, and now, ACA has him as being like one of their top consultants for kind of HIPAA compliance. Also, he just got to prove to do NBCC continuing ad by reading articles on his website, which I’m super jealous of.
And so as he grows, he knows that like I was there kind of from the beginning. And so it’s amazing how meeting these people when they’re first starting out and helping them grow, it’s going to help you, as well. So I think that just however you can help other people grow, however you can help other people get a bigger audience or make more money or get more exposure, that not that you’re doing it just to grow yourself, but you’re also then doing it to expose these great people to other people. You might not even have much of an audience yet. But finding that, whether it’s a podcast or blog or other things that you can kind of expose other people to them, it’s only going to help you grow.
All right, so we talked about selling sunglasses, we talked about growing through giving, and then one other thing I wanted to just make sure that I let you know about is my brand new — I totally revamped my consulting page, because it was kind of ambiguous as to when getting consulting from you is a good thing. So you can just go to practiceofthepractice.com and then on the far left menu, you’ll see what we do, and then if you drop down, you can look at consulting. And it kind of tells you what consulting with me is like. It also then kind of has some questions for you to ask yourself, like are you ready to put in the energy, the time, the money, all of that, and I would love to hear your ideas, maybe tweeted out and just tag me in that. That’s @ofthepractice, and let me know what you think, because I would love to hear any positive or negative feedback. The first round I sent out to my email list and got some great ideas from people. One lady even said, “Hey, tell me more about what it is that like people get as a result of that,” and so I changed that around. So check that out.
My list of 15 Must Read Books
And then let’s dive into these 15 books for 2015. These are in no particular order. These are books that I mostly read last year, but also, some books that I read before that, and I’m going to talk about each one, maybe grab a little bit out of it. I’m just going to grab them off my bookshelf. These are my top books. So let’s start with the one I’m reading right now. I’m about halfway through it. It’s a book called “Talk Like TED: The 9 Public-Speaking Secrets of the World’s Top Minds”, and it’s by Carmine Gallo. But what Carmine does is he looks at the top at the top 200 TED Talks that have been viewed the most and then looks at the kind of science behind it. I’m going to go to one of the pages here that I starred.
So there’s always like biological things that make you a better speaker. So one thing that really stood out to me was he broke down the average kind of TED Talk in regards to these three different areas. And so one area is going to be kind of storytelling, one is going to be more like research, and then the other one is going to be — I’m sorry, I didn’t take notes on this. He uses the Greek for it — oh, persuasion. So really trying to persuade the audience. And he found that most TED Talks have about 65% story. And so as I’ve been starting to write the “How to Become a Consultant” book and preparing for the launch of that podcast — it’s probably going to launch in May-ish, I’ve got some things I’m getting done right now. I’m really focusing on how do I tell a good story? And it’s really interesting because there’s really only like three effective types of stories that are used in TED Talks.
And so the first one is like a personal story. This is page 53 of Talk Like TED. “Inspiring communicators and the best TED presenters stick to one of three types of stories. The first are personal stories that relate directly to the theme of the conversation or presentation.” He later notes that they’re not like heady stories like, “When I was in Paris drinking this $100 wine,” no, they’re like stories of your grandma or your kid, things that almost anyone can relate to. All right, second are stories about other people who have learned a lesson the audience can relate to, and third are stories involving the success or failure of products or brands.
And so for me, to just break down, those are the three types of stories. I just recently wrote an article for PsychCentral all about Pinterest, and I really tried to tell it like a story, to tell the story of Ben, who launched Pinterest, and how he was the guy from Iowa, who came from a family of doctors, and he was in premed school and just realized, “I don’t want to be a doctor.” And he was in his junior year, and I kind of tell the story of what we can learn from this Pinterest founder and to really go from a story-based approach. So just loving this book. I’m probably halfway through it right now. The rest of them, I finished. If I end up not liking it, I’ll tell you.
All right, second book is called “The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business”, and that’s by Charles Duhigg. It’s spelled D-U-H-I-G-G, Duhigg. So he really goes into these kind of triggers in your life, and one thing that stood out to me in this book is that there are these like cutting most power habits. So when you do these habits, it trickles into other areas of your life. And so one thing like making your bed creates a sense in yourself that like you’re worth it, that you are a clean person in this 30-second to a minute-long activity. It has such a huge trickle-down effect. And there’s a lot more in the book, but I think that it really has been helpful for me in regards to trying to develop stronger habits in my life that will help in regards to business and in regards to meeting my own life goals. I know it’s been really influential in a number of people’s lives. And so on The Power of Habit, check that out, and I’ll have a link to all these in the show notes, which is going to be practiceofthepractice.com/session72, and yeah, let’s move on.
So last year, after ACA when I was in Hawaii, I read Seth Godin’s “Tribes”. This is another just essential book, and in each book, I kind of do to-do lists in the back and just underline a number of things, and it’s just amazing how much of this like ends up helping me grow personally my private practice, but then also as a consultant. So let’s look at page 108. He says, “The only thing that makes people and organizations great is their willingness to be not great along the way. The desire to fail on the way to reaching a bigger goal is the untold secret of success.”
And so Seth Godin really talks about developing more of a tribe in finding those people that will surround you, that are interested in what you’re talking about, and I think that when I launched Practice of the Practice, I really didn’t grow a tribe as well as I could have, and with this new project, the How to Become a Consultant podcast and book and maybe an eventual E-course, I’ve really tried to start that early. So people have joined the email list even before everything’s kind of ready to go. I started a Facebook group that’s private for people to go to and to discuss all sorts of things. I’ve invited people into talking about the logo, talking about what they want to have so that I can get that feedback of people that may end up being my customers and to be part of this tribe. And so Seth Godin’s “Tribes”.
All right, the next book is called “To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others” by Daniel H. Pink, and he’s the author also of “Drive” and “A Whole New Mind”, you may have heard of that. Let’s find a couple of things. All right, so I’m going to start on page 85. So he starts with, “Discover the best way to start a conversation,” and really, his main theme is that everybody is always selling. You’re trying to get people to come into your private practice. You’re trying to get people to believe in the cause that you’re a part of. You’re trying to help people donate to the nonprofit you care about, that we’re always trying to sell people on things. We don’t call it selling. We might call it influencing. Even when you thumbs up something on Facebook or share a Pinterest picture, those are things that you’re trying to influence others.
So he starts with, “Discover the best way to start a conversation. Everything good in life, a cool business, a great romance, a powerful social movement begins with a conversation. Talking with each other, one-to-one, is human beings’ most powerful form of attunement. Conversations help us understand and connect with others in ways no other species can. But what’s the best way to start a conversation especially with someone you don’t know well? How can you quickly put the person at ease, invite in interaction, and build rapport? For guidance, look to Jim Collins, author of the classic ‘Good to Great’, and other groundbreaking business books.” He says his favorite opening question is, “Where are you from?” So then, he goes on to talk about why that question “Where are you from?” is really an open-ended question that you can then kind of guide and talk to that person more about. I love that. Such a good book.
All right, number five, “The Eventual Millionaire” by Jaime Tardy, oh my gosh! And if you don’t listen to Jaime’s podcast, it is such a good podcast. I think I might do a blog post on like seven people you need to follow that aren’t me, or something like that, coming soon. So Jaime Tardy, this is just such a great book in so many ways. Jaime Tardy, she interviews millionaires on her podcast. That’s all she does. She picks their brains, tries to figure out why they’re millionaires. Kind of similar to the Millionaire Next Door if you’ve read that, but I think what I see Jaime do in this book is she outlines a very clear plan on how to become a millionaire. So things like pay off debt, invest in retirement, those sorts of things, but also, how do you push yourself to grow a business on the side?
So for example, if you have a full-time job right now, how do you grow your private practice? How do you grow your consulting practice to be even bigger, just start to monetize things, but not necessarily work more? So she goes through all sorts of these like really just super practical things, but let me pull out — so one thing she talks about on page 136 are KPIs. So it’s a Key Performance Indicator. These are numbers that you look at to understand if things are going well in your business, or not so well. These can include quantities like gross profit or net profit, a number of new prospects, a number of products sold, breakeven point, plus many more. At this point, you should be establishing which numbers you’ll use as your KPIs. It’s about finding out what key measurements your specific company will need to look at and set goals with.
So she’s really like has this practical stuff, like man, like we didn’t learn this in grad school. What can we do to make more money and have more of an influence? So let me back up a little bit. She also talks about — she’s talking about why you should get a speaking gig. She says — this is page 64, “So book a speaking gig in four months. It’s not scary because it’s so far away, or create a list to cold call, but don’t do it until next week.
When next week comes, just set a time limit of only 10 minutes to make as many calls as you can. I used the same tactic when I decided to launch my podcast. It seemed technically overwhelming at first. So the first action I took was to find and ask a millionaire. Then, when one said yes, I scheduled them six weeks out, so I had to figure out the technical stuff because I had that date looming. All it took was a simple email, but it stopped all the excuses I had.” I love that. She’s all about just like small movement forward. It’s just like, “Get going and you can move towards being a millionaire.”
Hold on a second. My battery on my computer, of course, is pooping out. So let me get this plugged in. Shoot! Oh, there it is. Sorry about that. Thanks for your patience. I thought I left it at home. All right, so just going to plug this mother in. All right, I’m back.
All right, next book. The next book is Jay and Jeannie Levinson’s “Startup Guide to Guerrilla Marketing: A Simple Battle Plan for First-Time Marketers”. Now, I have talked about this book many times before. So in 2009, my wife and I were in our small little Saturn, and all of May and half of June of 2009, we took a six-week road trip out west. We went and we saw friends and family members in national parks and went up the whole West Coast of the United States all the way up to Vancouver, and then kind of wiggled our way back, went to a bunch of national parks, Grand Tetons, and I mean, it was just like this amazing thing.
And during that trip, I had quit my job without a job in Traverse City. My wife was going to be doing her internship in Traverse City, and we just knew this is where we wanted to land. Like our families are from here, it has this beautiful beach town in Northern Michigan, so we’re just going to make it work, which is kind of out of character for us. We moved into her parents’ basement, and during that trip, I read this book, and it’s crazy to look at this book, to look at my notes, like looking at — it helped me structure Mental Wellness Counseling, it helped me come up with a potential mission, even like potential tags, helping angry kids since 1999, the fact that like in here, some of the notes of how basically, like I became successful, came out of this book. I looked at some of these things like, “How can I make six figures a year?” and I like looked back at like the value of a customer worksheet. I mean, this is something I work in consulting with all the time of teaching people about how do you figure out the value of a customer? So someone on average comes to your practice 10 times, 10 sessions, and they pay $100, that means the value of a client is $1,000.
So if you can figure out the value of a client, you can also figure out how much you’re willing to pay for marketing to get one client. And so if you can spend $100 and get two clients, then obviously, you’re going to be making a lot more money because that client is worth more than $100. I mean, there are so many great worksheets in here, brands that do it right, brand examples, and it’s just amazing. So “Startup Guide to Guerrilla Marketing” by the Levinsons was like foundational for me to grow my private practice.
All right, next, so we’re on to number seven, magic number seven, “Virtual Freedom:” by Chris Ducker, “How to Work with Virtual Staff to Buy More Time, Become More Productive, and Build Your Dream Business”. So Chris Ducker, I’ve interviewed him for the How to Become a Consultant podcast. He also just interviewed me for his podcast that’s going to be live in early April 2015. He and Pat Flynn just launched the 1-Day BB podcast, went number one in iTunes, just freaking amazing. Just so good.
So he does really amazing — just kind of talks about how do you engage virtual staff, and I’ve been getting so many more questions from people about virtual staff, about having virtual staff services, do you go through a service? Do you find someone — I have never gone through a service other than oDesk. I haven’t gone through like Chris Ducker’s program. I know it’s really good, but for me, I want to find people that are already kind of connected emotionally to me, like through a friend of a friend or something like that.
So one thing that Chris talks about in here that really just kind of hit me hard was this idea of superhero syndrome that as entrepreneurs, we think we can do everything the best. We think we should do everything to save money. And getting over that and realizing how you can optimize and magnify your time when you bring on virtual assistants was just such a shift for me. So he has this list of looking at things — three different areas: things you don’t like doing, things you can’t do, and things you shouldn’t do. And so list one of doing things that you don’t like doing, like checking email, managing social media, maybe handling basic inquiries, research and travel options. List two things you can’t do: maybe, develop a website, editing the podcast episodes, designing logos, bookkeeping or accounting. List three of things you probably shouldn’t be doing: it might be updating your Facebook page, transcribing online videos, managing the company blog, things like that.
And so he walks you through exactly how to hire a virtual staff, have a virtual staff help you, and what you can do to optimize their time. So I have four virtual assistants. I have Zoe, who you’ve heard about. She does a lot of Mental Wellness Counseling and is also getting trained in how to edit podcasts. So she’s going to be helping with some of that. And then I have Jennifer, who she started as an intern from Loyola down in Chicago, and she’s going to be stepping back from that role because she’s diving into the business world and is going to be pretty busy. So I’m in the midst of potentially hiring a new intern part-time and then maybe eventually bringing him on a little bit more. We still have to do the interview. So if he listens to this, I think when it goes live — that afternoon, so this goes live on Tuesday. He’s going to be interviewing. So we’ll see how that goes. And then I have two in the Philippines: one that does a lot of research in regards to just some of the business articles that I write, and then another one that transcribes each of the podcast so that I can have that SEO for the podcast. And honestly, so much of what I do comes from this book “Virtual Freedom” in regards to VAs.
All right, next up, “Business Model Generation”. This book, it says, “You’re holding a handbook for visionaries, game changers, and challengers, striving to defy outdated business models and design tomorrow’s enterprises. It’s the book for the business model generation.” So this is a very visual book. It walks you through so many different ways to come up with how you’re going to structure your business. It takes away that old 30-page business kind of model book or business plan that you would make and just put in a drawer and really challenges you to think through, “Okay, what is it that we’re offering, how are we going to do it, and how do we optimize our time?” My friend, Ian VanHover, he recommended this book. He’s a business app guru guy, and I said to him, “What are two books that you think are just like the best business books?” and this was one of them, and I read this a couple years ago. It really helped me kind of structure out what I wanted to accomplish through Practice of the Practice and Mental Wellness Counseling.
All right, next, Essentialism, and I would actually lump in together Essentialism with The One Thing. Those two books together are just dynamic, really so good at helping me focus, just what do I need to get done now? What’s essential? And so in Mental Wellness Counseling, my one thing for this year is really focusing in on building my clinicians that work here, their caseloads, because if I can do that, then I can make money. I cannot work as much. I can also then help them make money, and so it’s a win for everybody. I’ve been highly focused on trying to find places where we can go speak as a group to get more referrals to Mental Wellness Counseling so that they can be as full as they want, and then I can continue to keep bringing in more clinicians.
So Essentialism is really about figuring out what’s essential and what’s nonessential. And so let me just pull up one of the pages that I love. This is in the Commitment section. All right, so this is saying editing life, cutout options. “To state the obvious, editing involves cutting out things that confuse the reader and cloud the message or story. It is a matter of record that well-edited movies and books are easy on the eye and brain. When making decisions, deciding to cut options can be terrifying, but the truth is, it is the very essence of decision- making. In fact, the Latin root of the word “decision”, “cis” or “cid”, literally means “to cut” or “to kill”.
So over and over in this book and then in The One Thing they talk about, cutting back the nonessential things that are clouding up your life, even down to how Steve Jobs and President Obama both limited the amount of choices they had in regards to what they wore or wear. Like Steve Jobs always had his turtleneck and jeans. Obama always has the same two-color suits so he does not have to decide and use his mental energy on that. So amazing book, Essentialism, and I would lump in there, The One Thing, as well.
For me, I’m a firstborn, and some of you might not be, but it’s really good to understand firstborns if you are not. So this book, Dr. Kevin Leman’s book called “Born to Win: Keeping Your Firstborn Edge without Losing Your Balance”. And so I tend to be a person that is more likely to work harder than to be lazy. And so for me, finding that balance and connecting with kind of the import things of life beyond just — I don’t know. Beyond just — I don’t know. Work, work, work, like, “What are my goals? What’s my achievement? What’s my blah-blah-blah?” Like I need to sometimes slow down and remind myself that, “Hey, simmer down. It’s okay. You can do things for yourself and for your family and not feel guilty about it.” So this book, “Born to Win”, I would add that to the list, if you are a firstborn or if you work with firstborns, which is very likely.
Oh, sorry, I already said this one. So I kind of lumped it in with Essentialism, The One Thing, but let me find the section in here that just stands out to me because — all right, personal productivity. So personal — this page 134 of The One Thing. “Personal productivity is the building block of all business profit. The two are inseparable. A business can’t have unproductive people yet magically still have an immensely profitable business. Great businesses are built one productive person at a time, and not surprisingly, the most productive people receive the greatest rewards from their business. Connecting purpose, priority, and productivity determines how high above the rest successful individuals and profitable businesses rise. Understandably, this is at the core of producing extraordinary results. And so this book is just freaking awesome. It’s just insane. Pat Flynn, when I was interviewing him, he picked up this book and said, “This is the one book that I have that’s right on my desk in a hardcopy.”
All right, next, “The War of Art: Break through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles”, so Steven Pressfield. It has some naughty words in it. So if you haven’t heard of those before, then — and don’t listen to the audio if you’re driving around with kids. This is a really interesting book. So I liked it in one way — sorry. So there are these like really, really short vignettes, I mean, just like one to two pages, and Steven Pressfield just talks a lot about kind of creativity and art and just the war of art. Let me find a short one to read. So this is Resistance and Isolation, part two. “Friends sometimes ask, ‘Don’t you get lonely sitting by yourself all day?’ At first, it seemed odd to hear myself answer no, then I realized that I was not alone. I was in the book. I was with the characters. I was with myself.” So he’s an author, so that’s what he’s kind of talking about, the art of writing. “Not only do I not feel alone with my characters. They are more vivid and interesting to me than the people in my real life. If you think about it, the case can’t be otherwise. In order for a book or any project or enterprise to hold our attention for the length of time it takes to unfold itself, it has to plug in to some internal perplexity or passion that is of paramount importance to us. That problem becomes the theme of our work, even if we can’t at the start understand or articulate it
As the characters arise, each embodies infallibly an aspect of that dilemma; that perplexity. These characters might not be interesting to anyone else, but they’re absolutely fascinating to us. They are us. Meaner, smarter, sexier versions of ourselves. It’s fun to be with them because they’re wrestling with the same issue that has its hook into us. They’re our soulmates, our lovers, our best friends, even the villains; especially the villains. Even in a book like this, which has no characters, I don’t feel alone because I’m imagining the reader, whom I conjure as an aspiring artist, much like my own younger, less-grizzled self to whom I hope to impart a little starch and inspiration and prime, a little with some hard knocks wisdom and a few tricks of the trade.” So it’s a good book around just kind of inspiring the creative self.
All right, we got three more, and I’ve saved — I don’t want to save the best, but they’re really good. All right, so here, I’ve got “Jab Jab Jab Right Hook by Gary Vaynerchuk”. This is the authoritative guide, the Bible of social media, the guidebook for you to be amazing in social media. If you read this book and implement it, you’re going to kill social media. There are so many great pictures of what’s good and bad in social media. I have pages and pages of notes just in regards to what I could be implementing, and that’s the hard part. When you fill your brain, when you’re a consumer of all this information, there’s just so much that you could do that I feel like after this TED book, I’m going to pause reading and just start really trying to implement all the notes that I took from these books as much as I can.
Second to the last book, “How the World Sees You”. This is by Sally Hogshead. She has these 14 personality archetypes, and rather than something like a Myers-Briggs or Strong Interest Inventory or things like that of how you see the world, this comes from a branding and marketing point of view of how the world sees you and how the world really views you when you’re at your best. And so for me, I am the maestro, where my primary advantage is power. I lead with command, and my secondary advantage is prestige that I earn respect with higher standards. And so for me, kind of my mantra or what best describes me when I’m at my best is I help people reach ambitious results. And so I just go after it. And so this book has been the one that really helped me to be able to articulate that better. And as a part of the book, you get to take the test and learn all sorts of things about yourself through that.
And then of course, the last book, I would have to recommend is “Practice of the Practice | The Start-up Guide to Launching a Private Practice”, my own book. This book, for me, has been just such a staple you can get on Amazon. There will be a link in the show notes, and for me, I think my favorite part, the part that I go back to the most is when people talk about a flooded market or they talk about limited supply of counseling clients in the town, and I used the example on the book, and I always go back to it, of that of sushi. You think back about sushi — I don’t know, 10 years, 15 years ago, and you could only get sushi in larger cities, maybe coastal towns, maybe one small restaurant, but as people have tasted sushi, as people have been able to experience its deliciousness, the market has improved, the market has grown, the market has wanted more sushi. And now, pretty much every grocery store in America has sushi, has spring rolls, has California rolls, and someone would argue it’s not authentic sushi, but as a market, it adapted to the palate.
And so imagine if that one sushi shop in some small town in northern Michigan was like, “I don’t want any other sushi shops to open because there’s only this many sushi eaters in northern Michigan,” they would have missed it. If they had partnered with other sushi shops, if they had put on sushi events, they would have grown their market.
And so for me, that’s the best analogy in regards to how do you grow a counseling practice? How do you grow a consulting practice? Well, you partner with people. You give things away, you become a resource, you help other people to be successful, you help people taste the deliciousness of sushi, and then in doing that, the entire market will grow. So for me, that’s kind of how I approach it.
So I hope those books are crazy helpful for you. Feel free to check out the show notes, just practiceofthepractice/session73, and you may have noticed, there’s a little issue in regards to session 72, — 71, 72, a little mix up there, but we’re just going to skip to session 73 so we’re on the same page. So sorry if you feel like you’ve missed one. You did. I screwed it up. I think I said 72 instead of 71 in the past episode, but so it is.
So again, thanks for letting me into your ears and into your brain. Thanks again to SimplePractice, our sponsor today. Have an awesome week, and I’ll talk to you soon.
Special thanks to the bands Silence is Sexy and TheBlackParrot. We like your music.
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