Weekly Reading List 5.30.22
- 4 Curations
- May 30, 2022
Once again, I’ve had success and luck on the mind, which makes me think about the randomness of outcomes. So, I decided to give this book another read since it’s been a couple years, and it’s just as fantastic as the first time I read it. Leonard Mlodinow does such an excellent job explaining how randomness is involved with everything from personal success to the the success of companies, movies, books, and so many other things we don’t give a second thought. He highlights how people are rewarded or punished based on these outcomes, but randomness is rarely ever considered.
If you haven’t read this book yet, you’ll walk away absolutely baffled at how often we’re sold on this deterministic idea that things happened the way they should have. The reality is that randomness is doing it’s thing. To end the book Mlodinow dives into some social psychology research about how we judge a person’s worth by their status or wealth, and that is a major issue because most people were either dealt a bad hand or an extremely lucky hand.
There are some points in the book where the math off probabilities goes way over my head, but anyone can easily follow along with this book. Get this book if you haven’t yet, and if you have it, give it another read. I’ve actually been teaching my son about some of the topics from this book.
I’ve heard so much about Derren Brown, but I’m ashamed to say that I’ve never watched any of his stuff or read anything by him. But, based on everything I hear, I’d love his stuff. So, why’d I read this book? Well, the other day I asked my followers for recommendations for mental health books, and someone swore by this book, so I checked it out. And hot damn is it good.
I’m so glad that this book has been read by so many people because it’s such a fantastic book. I was put off by how long this book is, but I breezed through it because I couldn’t put it down. Most of the book is rooted in the philosophy of stoicism, but Derren brings a wisdom to the book that is refreshing. He discusses the self-help movement and all the nonsense “cures” for sadness are out there and then goes into various challenges that we all deal with. Brown uses the lens of stoicism to discuss how we judge ourselves, judge situations, and judge others. He provides interesting anecdotes along with quotes from the ancient stoics as well as research throughout the book.
I just can’t put into words how awesome this book is, and it made me want to go read some of my other books about stoicism. This is one of those books that I’ll definitely revisit in the future, and I’m officially a huge fan of Derren Brown.
by Derren Brown
I’m always reading about the work and idea os John Stuart Mill in various books on philosophy and politics, but I knew little to nothing about him. As I was browsing new releases the other day, I came across this one and decided to check it out. This book lives up to the title and gives a fantastic introduction to the work of John Stuart Mill. I always worry that books like this are going to be a bunch of confusing quotes from 150 years ago, but the author did a fantastic job explaining Mill’s ideas, what was going on at the time, and how his ideas were received. And throughout the book, there was a bit about Mill’s life as well, which was pretty cool.
I definitely recommend this book if you’re interested in learning morea bout Mill. But, I must say, as an audio listener, the narrator made this book extremely difficult to listen to. He had a strange cadence to his voice that drove me nuts and made it difficult to focus on the content. Other than that, fantastic book. So, if you read physical copies, you don’t have to worry about that.
If you’re an ambitious, hard-working parent, you need to stop what you’re doing and go get this book. I can’t even begin to express the amount of inspiration, validation, and comfort I got from this book. Lara Bazelon is a badass. She’s not just an author, she’s a lawyer and a professor, and a mother. As a father who works his ass off and is always trying to find balance, it was so refreshing to read this book and realize that I’m not the only one dealing with all of these internal conflicts.
Yes, the book is female-focused, but dads can gain a ton from this book as well. In fact, Lara discusses how a lot of her ambition came from her father. In this book Lara discusses her internal conflicts of being a mother while also trying to pursue her goals. As a man, it was really interesting to learn about all of the biases, stereotypes, and overall BS women have to deal with in the world as mothers. Bazelon discusses double-standards for women as well as the unrealistic expectations of women that were really highlighted during the pandemic as more parents had to work from home.
I could go on and on about this book, but I just hope it gets as much attention as it deserves. Lara interviews amazing women throughout the book. Through her personal story as well as theirs, you’ll walk away from this book knowing that you can be a badass parent while also working hard. This book will be an inspiration to anyone who reads it, and I know I gained a ton from my experience with it.
by Lara Bazelon
This week, I finished 4 books and each one was fantastic. I learned about the ideas and history of John Stuart Mill, read an absolutely amazing new book about being an ambitious parent, and a surprisingly great book about happiness and stoicism. The list starts with a book I just had to read again, which is all about how randomness rules our lives. Enjoy!