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Books for Growth and Learning

Books for Growth and Learning

imageby Blinkist

Embracing your own talents, skill set, and abilities is often part of deciding the steps you should take in life and which journey you should take next. Whether it's recognizing your personality type, honing in on being a better leader, or just learning more about what makes you successful, there's always something that can be done to make us better. If any of this sounds like you, then opening up one of these books is a great way to start.

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Personality: What Makes You the Way You Are

2007 | Daniel Nettle

It is one of the great mysteries of human nature. Why are some people worriers, and others wanderers? Why are some people so easy-going and laid-back, while others are always looking for a fight? Written by Daniel Nettle--author of the popular book Happiness--this brief volume takes the reader on an exhilarating tour of what modern science can tell us about human personality. Revealing that our personalities stem from our biological makeup, Nettle looks at the latest findings from genetics and brain science, and considers the evolutionary origins and consequences of different personalities. The heart of the book sheds light on the "big five": Extraversion, Neuroticism, Conscientious, Agreeableness, and Openness. Using a stimulating blend of true-life stories and scientific research, Nettle explains why we have something deep and consistent within us that determines the choices we make and situations we bring about. He addresses such questions as why members of the same family differ so markedly in their natures? What is the best personality to have--a bold one or a shy one, an aggressive one or a meek one? And are you stuck with your personality, or can you change it? Life, Nettle concludes, is partly the business of finding a niche where your personality works for you. "It is a question of choosing the right pond," he notes, "and being mindful of the dangers." There is no ideal personality to have. Every disposition brings both advantages and disadvantages. Full of human wisdom as well as scientific insight, this book illuminates the pluses and minuses of personality, offering practical advice about living with the nature you were born with. It even includes a questionnaire so that you can assess yourself.

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Me, Myself, and Us: The Science of Personality and the Art of Well-Being

2012 | Brian Little

In the past few decades, personality psychology has made considerable progress in raising new questions about human nature—and providing some provocative answers. New scientific research has transformed old ideas about personality based on the theories of Freud, Jung, and the humanistic psychologies of the nineteen sixties, which gave rise to the simplistic categorizations of the Meyer-Briggs Inventory and the "enneagream." But the general public still knows little about the new science and what it reveals about who we are. In Me, Myself, and Us, Brian Little, Ph.D., one of the psychologists who helped re-shape the field, provides the first in-depth exploration of the new personality science and its provocative findings for general readers. The book explores questions that are rooted in the origins of human consciousness but are as commonplace as yesterday's breakfast conversation. Are our first impressions of other people's personalities usually fallacious? Are creative individuals essentially maladjusted? Are our personality traits, as William James put it, "set like plaster" by the age of thirty? Is a belief that we are in control of our lives an unmitigated good? Do our singular personalities comprise one unified self or a confederacy of selves, and if the latter, which of our mini-mes do we offer up in marriage or mergers? Are some individuals genetically hard-wired for happiness? Which is the more viable path toward human flourishing, the pursuit of happiness or the happiness of pursuit? Little provides a resource for answering such questions, and a framework through which readers can explore the personal implications of the new science of personality. Questionnaires and interactive assessments throughout the book facilitate self-exploration, and clarify some of the stranger aspects of our own conduct and that of others. Brian Little helps us see ourselves, and other selves, as somewhat less perplexing and definitely more intriguing. This is not a self-help book, but students at Harvard who took the lecture course on which it is based claim that it changed their lives.

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Leadershift Workbook: Making the Essential Changes Every Leader Must Embrace

John C. Maxwell

Change is so rapid today that leaders must do much more than stay the course to be successful. If they aren't nimble and ready to adapt, they won't survive. The key is to learn how to leadershift. In the Leadershift Workbook, which accompanies the book of the same name, bestselling author John C. Maxwell will help leaders gain the ability and willingness to make leadership changes that will positively enhance their organizational and personal growth. He begins by explaining seven principles they need to implement into their daily lives so they will be ready to face every situation with flexibility and confidence: Continually learn, unlearn, and relearn Value yesterday but live in today Rely on speed, but thrive on timing See the big picture as the picture keeps getting bigger Live in today but think about tomorrow Move forward courageously in the midst of uncertainty Realize today's best will not meet tomorrow's challenges In the remaining lessons in the workbook, Dr. Maxwell shares the eleven shifts he has personally made over the course of his long and successful leadership career. He explains how each of these shifts changed his trajectory and set him up for new and exciting achievements, ultimately strengthening and sustaining his leadership abilities and making him the admired leadership expert he is today. He concludes by challenging readers to implement these "leadershifts" in their lives and see how these principles change the way they think, act, and ultimately lead so they can be successful in an ever-changing world.

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