Books you should read if you hate reading

Koushik Thota
5 min readFeb 5, 2022


Wish I would have read these when I was 18

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1. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson

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This book taught me certain things which shaped me on how to tackle problems and take full responsibility for its consequences by being mindful.

The moment you stop looking for someone to blame and take full responsibility for your problems, you will feel empowered to do something about them. Because if you’re not in a better place a month from now, then it’s your fault.

Manson provides an interesting take on the well known quote :

“With great responsibility comes great power.”

Try solving problems by understanding the underlying reason rather than complaining.

2. Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki

I regret to this day on why I haven’t read this earlier as it has completely changed my perspective on how I look at money and wealth. The way it has been explained by taking his 2 dads and their definition of being rich is simply brilliant and eye-opening.

Most people do not leverage assets and build their wealth but rather fall into the trap of buying liabilities which eats up their wealth. Robert Kiyosaki emphasizes a lot on building assets to become rich.

Robert further implies not focusing on increasing paychecks, but rather concentrating your efforts on reducing expenses and acquiring income‐generating assets. When the income from your assets can cover your living expenses, you are financially free. You no longer need to go to a job you hate just to pay bills and survive.

My Favorite Quote from the book:

“Assets put money in your pocket. Liabilities take money out of your pocket.”

3. Atomic Habits by James Clear

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I was awestruck by the way James explains how to make every new healthy and productive behavior (i.e., exercising, cooking, writing, reading, etc.) obvious, easy, attractive, and satisfying so that it may turn into a daily habit.

James explains a strategy called Stacking, which involves using an old and reliable daily habit as the trigger for a new habit. When you stack a new habit on an existing habit, you use the momentum of the old habit to make the new habit easier to initiate. But if the hill of your new habit is too daunting, the momentum of the old habit won’t be enough. That’s why you need to reduce your new habit to an easy two‐minute starting ritual.

James also talks about Synchronizing where he gives a clever hack on combining a new habit with an task you love to do. Eg: Working on your treadmill or doing your workout while listening to music.

When you synchronize an experience you crave with a new habit, you dread doing, the craving will counteract the resistance to executing the new habit and allow you to get started.

Scoring is another strategy where James emphasizes on creating a visual proof(Markings on calendar/Habit tracking App) which shows that you are really working on your habit. This provides the satisfaction you need to return to the habit over and over until the habit sticks.

4. Ikigai: The Japanese secrets to a long and happy life by Héctor García & Francesc Miralles

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This book thought me about how you can live a longer and happier life by having a purpose, eating healthy, and not retiring. Okinawa, Japan is home to some of the longest-living people in the world. Their secret is ikigai. The Japanese word has two characters: ‘iki’ which means life, and ‘gai,’ or value.

It questions on what needs to be done in your life to strike a balance between Something you love, something you are good at, something that pays you well and something that the world needs.

Few other things I learnt from this book is to Focus on enjoying life for what you have, instead of being afraid of what might go wrong and the importance of staying healthy as to keep moving throughout the day, no matter how little.

5. Compound Effect by Darren Hardy

Take a look at this simple math

1.01 ^ 365 = 37.8 and 0.99 ^ 365 = 0.03

The difference between giving it 101% vs 99% everyday. Life Compounds

Many people struggle to keep up to work for sustained periods of time and just give up at the short term results (e.g.: Learning something new. Investing. Working out).

The lesson I learnt is to Resist the urge to see immediate results and receive short-term payoffs. Instead, construct a daily habit of constant improvements to generate the compound effect in your life and produce incredible results

Darren suggests 3 ways to stay compounded

  1. Choice Awareness: Be conscious of your choices by keeping a pad of paper and a pen nearby to write down every choice you make in a particular area of life that you want to improve.
  2. Why Power: Your ‘WHY Power’ is the internal drive you need to get started and take massive action. Your WHY can take two forms: what you love and what you hate. Your why doesn’t have to be noble, it just has to move you.
  3. Bookend Routines: The moments after we wake up and the moments before we go to bed are within our control — we must use these moments to direct our lives

And finally my favorite quote from the Book

The Compound Effect is the principle of reaping huge rewards from a series of small, smart choices. What’s most interesting about this process to me is that, even though the results are massive, the steps, in the moment, don’t feel significant. Whether you’re using this strategy for improving your health, relationships, finances, or anything else for that matter, the changes are so subtle, they’re almost imperceptible. These small changes offer little or no immediate result, no big win, no obvious I-told-you-so payoff. So why bother?

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Koushik Thota

Ex - child | Data Engineer | Loves Tech and Finance