Friday, May 29, 2009

Joker in the Pack - Ritesh Sharma & Neeraj Pahlajani

What a time to reflect on the life at IIMB? Graduated in March with the convocation, it been just around 3 complete months but feels like ages since those magical days in the corridors on the college.
The book is a nice read for people going into the college but similarly, its worth while to be read post the college days. No new insights but gives good memories of the days.
The issues dealt in the book are really interesting for I could relate closely to many emotions but with a mix of characters.... Go ahead read if you want an interesting view on the life @ IIMs

Zen and The Art of Motorcycle Maintenance - Robert M Prisig

Some books are path breaking in the world of philosophy and this one is definitely one them, a book which has inspired new thinking of thousands across the world.
Did I like the book? Definitely, then I need to ask Why did I like to book as much as I did? May be its part narration, part the content - the questions that it has dealt with, part just the timing of reading the book.
The narration:
One of my hobbies as is clear from some of the blogs that I have posted is trekking, very similar to the motorcycle ride across The United States; these are times when you get to think a lot about your own ideology of life. On a trek, in the lap of mother nature, its time to reflect and search for any meaning that comes out, any new insights that comes from the past; this a one of the reason why I loved the book.
The content:
The details of the story apart, what interested me most of the many things the attempt at understanding quality, the unity of eastern and western approaches in searching for the meaning of life and to be most precise - the attempt at understanding 'dharma' in the Indian philosphy.
There are as I mentioned already a lot of other issues he deals with, its worth reading at a slow pace and letting things sink... I personally spent over 4 weeks to read this book, and I still feel there is lot more to this.
The timing:
While I am working for most of the time on starting up, this book talks of a lot of the philosophy, which looks so very true when I read about it and relate to the context in the real life. May be at some other point in time you can read it to be understood quite differently from what I understand it now - but that is so true of awesome works like these.

A nice read if somebody is interested in philosophy and the associated debate - just to emphasize... there is no much relation with 'zen Buddhism practiced in the east.'

Screw It Let's Do It - Lessons in life by Richard Branson

We are inspired by some people to the core, and Richard Branson is one of those some special people for me.
A man who has done so much in life, who has risked so much in life just to be himself is definitely one from whom you need to take a leaf.
This book is a short read, can be completed in a couple of hours; but inspires one to the core, probably one of the best books which I can compare with the likes of 'Alchemist'. Why did I choose this smaller book when I could have read the bigger one... well no explanation to that its just the paucity of time and the let me try it out first (may be I fell to the trap of what the marketing genius wanted me do .... would be more than happy for this one... coz it given me a lot more)
Some of the lessons shared in the book are worth being mentioned in a lot of places. Here are some of those gems which I would like to share; probably more relevant to those who would start off and experiment, the adventure type... every one would take something out of these definitely. So here I go
  1. Just do it!
  2. Believe it can be done
  3. Have goals
  4. Live life to the full
  5. Never give up
  6. Prepare well
  7. Have faith in yourself
  8. Help each other
  9. Have fun, work hard and money will come
  10. Don't waste time - grab your chances
  11. Have a positive outlook on life
  12. When it's not fun, move on
  13. Be bold
  14. Calculate the risks and take them
  15. Believe in yourself
  16. Chase your dreams and goals
  17. Have no regrets
  18. Keep your word
  19. Challenge yourself
  20. Aim High
  21. Try new things
  22. Always try
  23. Rely on yourself
  24. Chase your dreams but live in the real world
  25. Work together
  26. Live the moment
  27. Love life and live it to the full
  28. Enjoy the moment
  29. Reflect on your life
  30. Make every second count
  31. Value family and friends
  32. Put family and the team first
  33. Be loyal
  34. Face problems head on
  35. Money if for making things happen
  36. Pick the right people and reward talent
  37. Have respect
  38. Be polite and respectful
  39. Do the right things
  40. Keep your good name
  41. Be fair in all your dealings
  42. Do some good
  43. Change the world, even in a small way
  44. Make a difference and help others
  45. Do no harm
  46. Always think what you can do to help
This is definitely a long list... but its worth practicing. Having taken the entrepreneur way, I see the value of each of these in my daily life. The book is a must read for a quick dose of inspiration to change the world in our own small way.