eBook Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less (Audio Download): Amazon.co.uk: Greg McKeown, Greg McKeown, Random House AudioBooks: Audible Audiobooks – Entrecielos.co

Brought to you by Penguin Have you ever found yourself struggling with information overload Have you ever felt both overworked and underutilised Do you ever feel busy but not productive If you answered yes to any of these, the way out is to become an essentialist In Essentialism, Greg McKeown, CEO of a leadership and strategy agency in Silicon Valley who has run courses at Apple, Google and Facebook, shows you how to achieve what he calls the disciplined pursuit of less Being an essentialist is about a disciplined way of thinking It means challenging the core assumptions of we can have it all and I have to do everything and replacing them with the pursuit of the right thing in the right way at the right time By applying a selective criteria for what is essential, the pursuit of less allows us to regain control of our own choices so we can channel our time, energy and effort into making the highest possible contribution toward the goals and activities that matter Using the experience and insight of working with the leaders of the most innovative companies and organisations in the world, McKeown shows you how to put Essentialism into practice in your own life, so you, too, can achieve something great Single most memorable passage Charlie O Simms taught a Journalism 101 class at Beverly Hills High School He started by explaining the concept of a lead He explained that a lead contains the why, what , when, and who of the piece It covers the ESSENTIAL my emphasis information Then he gave them their first assignment write a lead to a story.Simms began by presenting the facts of the story Kenneth L Peters, the principal of Beverly Hills High School, announced today that the entire high school faculty will travel to Sacramento next Thursday for a colloquium in new teaching methods Among the speakers will be anthropologist Margaret Mead, college president Dr Robert Maynard Hutchins, and California governor Edmund Pa BrownThe students hammered away on their manual typewriters trying to keep up with the teacher s peace Then they handed in their rapidly written leads Each attempted to summarise the who, what where, and why as succinctly as possible Margaret Mead, Maynard Hutchins, and Governor Brown will address the faculty on Next Thursday, the high school faculty will Simms reviewed the students leads and put them aside.He then informed them that they were all wrong The lead to the story, he said, was There will be no school on Thursday.In that instant, Nora Ephron of Sleepless in Seattle and When Harry met Sally recalled, I realised that journalism was not just about regurgitating the facts but about figuring out the POINT It wasn t enough to know the who, what, when, and where you had to understand what it MEANT And why it MATTERED Ephron added, He taught me something that works just as well in life as it does in journalism p73 74Disclaimer I have not read a whole lot of management self improvement books, so I cannot say that I am a very good judge of the genre There is a danger that this book is actually littered with tired old cliches that I hadn t noticed, in which case I shouldn t have bothered you with this That said Self improvement books are a strange breed myself included, you so often see people who read one and then complain that the book only wrote about the really obvious things In the same sense, however, homo sapiens are a strange breed who never quite do what they know to be the obviously good things for themselves grin emoticon Enter, then, the study of management the study on coordination of the efforts of people to accomplish goals and objectives by using available resources efficiently and effectively Sounds like self improvement on a larger scale, but with the added benefit of providing results from well designed research.The author is a management consultant with an MBA degree from Stanford Perhaps naturally, the book often reads like a business strategy book with plenty of case studies from the corporate world, but as Ephron says, those methods can easily be used for life in general The book s message can be neatly summed up in one sentence Figure out what is really important and essential in your life, and eliminate everything else to focus your efforts and achieve maximum output contribution to society The rest of the book is just filled up by how to achieve that goal.While the rest of the book is coherently structured with a logical, well suited flow and sensible, well researched suggestions backed up by sociology psychology research findings these days it seems impossible to read something that doesn t quote Flow by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi and Thinking Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman, although probably due to my reading interests Perhaps I should just give up and add them to the reading list , some solutions that the author suggests will just sound implausible One example is the importance of being able to say no to your boss so that you can concentrate on something essential Obviously, I cannot imagine myself doing so to my bosses, consultant surgeons For some other solutions, I thought they can only be done when one is reasonably financially secure, so that he she can take the risk hit by cutting out declining all the non essential activities that regularly plague our lives However, as my stock phrase goes if we are to look at the moon instead of the finger pointing at the moonThe part that really inspires me in this book is its single minded pursuit and the determination for what constitutes the most important thing in our lives what makes our lives meaningful for us as illustrated in the above anecdote , and what will ultimately enable us to be useful to the rest of the humanity Sure, it may not always be obvious to all of us, and the method of elimination the book suggests may not guarantee to lead us to an answer In fact, our lives may quite possibly be meaningless D Nevertheless, for me it is certainly worth a try.The other aspects that left a strong impression for me was the authors repeated emphasis on how pursuing Essentialism is a choice, and the importance of EMOTIONAL not intellectual acceptance of the book s ideas for them to work which is to say, as discussed at the beginning, it is not because we don t know what to do why we don t do them There is always a choice, and we simply choose not to. Again, this is one of those books that I took in bite sized chunks Read a bit, consider and try to put into practice until my actions were becoming habitual You choose to improve or you don t.1 I have become much better at saying no, but saying it nicely or without actually using the word 2 I have become better at getting things done and prioritising what is and is not important to me although that is still work in progress 3 I have become better at time management.4 I procrastinate less not totally gone, but also work in progress All in all a very useful and thought provoking guide to help you take back control of areas of your life It has certainly helped reduce my stresses and anxiety in life and I would strongly recommend reading if you are stressed or anxious. I don t often give books five stars, but this one deserves it if only because it brought me back to earth at a time when it was sorely needed.I have, by definition, lived life as an essentialist for quite some time in many respects and yet recently came upon some circumstances, which made me start thinking everything but the essential was essential.Through thoughtful insights, interesting stories and an easy to read style this book helped guide me back to a place where really only the essential gets taken into account and the rest becomes easier to eliminate.Thank you Greg.