Sales and motivation go hand in hand. Any day that you are not progressing your business forward is a day that your competitor is and will hit you 30, 60, 90 days later. For every sales man or woman, these books are a great guide to pull inspiration from other top performers in their space whether they are entrepreneurs or Navy SEALs. Don't look to do all at once, rather take actionable small steps and do them consistently. Keep referring back to these books as well. Anything you read once with out consistent reference back to will unfortunately do little good. Without further ado, the top motivational books:
Successful entrepreneur Jesse Itzler of Marquis Jets and ZICO coconut water lives with the famous Navy Seal David Goggins. The story is not only funny and entertaining but goes to show how much more one can accomplish by having a force (David Goggins) pushing you to do just a little bit more. Whether it’s a 2am run in Central Park or a freezing cold outdoor workout Goggins proves that one can always do more. This book motivates readers to take a good look internally to see how you can ratchet it up one or two levels.
Key takeaway: Push yourself everyday to grow and gain a new skill that was previously out of your comfort zone. Comfort kills.
Quote of the book: “Every day do something that makes you uncomfortable”
Ever wonder how professional athletes or actors make their performance seem so easy compared to novices? The answer lies in that they have perfected the little things. Admiral William H. McRaven gave the commencement speech at The University of Texas Austin that went viral on YouTube. As a Navy SEAL he learned that success in life is ultimately decided by having discipline and focusing on the details. Each morning in seal boot camp McRaven had to make his bed which seems relatively trivial when you are being constantly harassed and lacking sleep during the toughest military training in the world. However, making your bed enforces the belief that starting your day with a win makes you feel proud and ready to deal with the rest of the challenges for the day. An inspiring read with quick digestible chapters.
Key takeaway: One takeaway from this book that I practice in my day to day is McRaven’s attitude towards failure. When a SEAL fails training for the day they were forced to do extra calisthenics after hours which was dubbed the Circus. The funny takeaway was that those who did not give up and completed the extra Circus workouts came back stronger due to the extra training. When the going gets tough, dig in a little bit more.
Quote of the book: “Life is a struggle and the potential for failure is ever present, but those who live in fear of failure, or hardship, or embarrassment will never achieve their potential. Without pushing your limits, without occasionally sliding down the rope headfirst, without daring greatly, you will never know what is truly possible in your life.”
An all time best selling novel by Paulo Coehlo tells the tale of a Spanish boy named Santiago as he embarks on a journey from Spain after having a recurring dream around traveling to the Egyption pyramids to seek a treasure. After numerous challenges and roadblocks, Santiago ends up making the trek to the pyramids to chase his personal legend. A man tells Santiago that he had a dream of a treasure in an abandoned church, prompting Santiago find his true treasure back in Spain.
Key takeaway: Similar to the “constraints” that are holding you back in your life, Santiago makes it abundantly clear that ones purpose in life is to chase after your dream and the universe will come together to make that happen.
Quote of the book: “There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.”
Is Kobe Bryant great because of natural talent or deliberate hard work? Duckworth argues in her best selling motivational book that outstanding achievements are not only based on talent but also passion and perseverance. Most say they believe that hard work is more powerful than talent but most don’t actually believe it when the going gets tough. To really become a high achiever one must have skill which she believes is created from talent and effort. That skill when coupled with effort really makes the magic happen to achieve great results. Similar to admiral McRaven small consistent, low level daily goals are what makes the dream work.
Key takeaway: Talent plays a role in achievement but a much smaller one than effort.
Quote of the book: “as much as talent counts, effort counts twice.”
An unusual choice for a motivational book? Yes, but the 4-hour Workweek fits the mold. Tim Ferriss broke the internet when he released this book. Know anyone slaving away in a corporate job (maybe even you)? Ferriss teaches you the tools of how to break those shackles by effective life principles as well as business tips. From preaching the 80/20 principle to effectively spend your time to charging a premium for your products because making a sale is a bigger ask of shoppers than charging a little bit more for that same product.
Key takeaway: Two key takeaways from this book. 1. Measure productivity by progress not time spent working. 2. Validate your business ideas before diving in headfirst. For example, if you are selling a pillow to solve for back pain while sitting at a desk don’t order your first 100 orders because you believe in the idea. Go and ask your circle of friends if that’s an issue they face and is something they would even consider buying. Same goes for local business owners in the space.
Quote of the book: “For all of the most important things, the timing always sucks. Waiting for a good time to quit your job? The stars will never align and the traffic lights of life will never all be green at the same time. The universe doesn't conspire against you, but it doesn't go out of its way to line up the pins either. Conditions are never perfect. "Someday" is a disease that will take your dreams to the grave with you. Pro and con lists are just as bad. If it's important to you and you want to do it "eventually," just do it and correct course along the way.”
Legendary Laker, Kobe Bryant needs no introduction. For those sports lovers this book is a wonderful read on the late great Kobe. Kobe walks readers through how he mastered the art of basketball physically but more importantly mentally. Kobe adopted the ‘Black Mamba’ moniker as part of his image as a win at all costs, attention to detail, fierce competitive athlete. From stories to Shaq and Pau take a peak inside a true competitor.
Key takeaway: To become great, Kobe’s daily routine was legendary. Kobe sacrificed sleep to be successful. From early morning workouts to late evenings after a late flight home strength sessions, the Black Mamba was all in.
Quote of the book: “Whether I hear an elite college or NBA player or a Fortune 500 CEO reference the #MambaMentality, I find it very meaningful. When I see people talk about finding inspiration in it, it makes all of my hard work, all of the sweat, all of the 3 AM wakeups feel worth it. That’s why I put together this book. All these pages incorporate lessons—not just lessons on basketball, but also on the Mamba Mentality.”
Did you know all it takes to become more confident is 5 seconds? Seriously, Mel Robins teaches that 5 seconds is all it takes to action and change your life for the better. How does it work? Count backwards from five to one and than take action. This avoids the dreaded procrastination by engaging the prefrontal cortex of the brain. The human brain uses various methods that are hardwired into our brain over thousands of years to stop you from making a change because it is uncomfortable and frightening. A fascinating read that has transformed Mel into a national figure.
Key takeaway: When making a sale people have an urge to hesitate and begin thinking about all the other options out there at the final stages. It is tough to make a good decision that one is content with when there are so many alternative options. KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) when closing a deal, the fewer options the better. From promotions to products.
Quote of the book: "The 5 Second Rule: The moment you have an instinct to act on a goal you must 5-4-3-2-1 and physically move or your brain will stop you."
David Goggins, one of the most badass people on Planet Earth who has Air Force, Navy SEAL, best selling author, ultra-endurance athlete and a world record for most pull ups in 24 hours (record has since been broken) to his name, takes us on a journey of his life. One might think that he was born out of the womb with impressive discipline however Goggins had a very tough life growing up in an abusive household riddled with racism and sub par parenting. He was working menial day jobs until he finally had enough after ballooning to 300 lbs. A Navy SEAL documentary finally motivated him to rewrite his life’s script and the rest as they say is history.
Key takeaway: This book is an inspiring read that shows that no matter how low you might be you can always reverse course and turn your life around. Use your “challenges” as motivation and turn them into a source of growth. The more challenges you’ve overcome the tougher you will be.
Quote of the book: “Our culture has become hooked on the quick-fix, the life hack, efficiency. Everyone is on the hunt for that simple action algorithm that nets maximum profit with the least amount of effort. There’s no denying this attitude may get you some of the trappings of success, if you’re lucky, but it will not lead to a calloused mind or self-mastery. If you want to master the mind and remove your governor, you’ll have to become addicted to hard work. Because passion and obsession, even talent, are only useful tools if you have the work ethic to back them up.”
Practical advice to improve day to day relationships. All time best selling book in handling other people, win people over and become a better leader. The book takes a great approach that is very relatable and easy to grasp, oftentimes taking advice from instances that made you feel good when treated a certain way.
Key takeaway: You can only change people when they want to change. Whether business or personal, you must help other people see the other side and come to the realization on their own terms. Another key point is that there is no winner from an argument. Both sides become embittered and double down on their original beliefs. Avoid arguments at all costs.
Quote of the book: “I have come to the conclusion that there is only one way under high heaven to get the best of an argument— and that is to avoid it. Avoid it as you would avoid rattlesnakes and earthquakes.”
Released in 1991 Tony Robbins, the GOAT of the self help world, teaches a blueprint of how to take control of your life through your mind helping you with your relationships as well as work and finances. One tip that Robbins advises is to view bad habits with pain and good ones with pleasure. If you want to stop eating French fries, every time you eat a French fry you should play a song that you hate to associate that action with something negative.
Key takeaway: There are thousands of words in the English language. Make sure your are deliberate and thoughtful on the words you use. Use words that reinforce good feelings.
Quote of the book: “Know that it’s your decisions, and not your conditions, that determine your destiny.”