What I’ve Been Reading Recently – My Bookshelf #9

What I've Been Reading Recently - My Bookshelf #9

Intro

I read 39 books in 2016 (as of April). I’m ahead of my last year’s count (this time, last year). I don’t do speed reading. I try to read slowly. I enjoy it. It’s not a hobby. It’s something I do everyday for a substantial amount of my time.

Most of the books I read this year are non-fiction. A few of them are audiobooks (fiction and self-development) and approximately 10-12 of them are programming books – which I had to go through even slower because they implied practicing with code.

What I’m currently mostly interested in is: genomics, bioinformatics, epigenetics and small-scale entrepreneurship. It’d be only reasonable to think that the books I read come from these fields.

Additionally, I read research studies, and, besides audiobooks, I listen to podcasts, interviews and watch lectures on these subjects. Coursera’s online courses also take a stretch of my time.

15 Compounds with Effect on Lifespan

15 Compounds with Effect on Lifespan

A crowd-funded project on the topic of longevity was successfully funded on June 16, 2015. The scope of the project was to create a longevity cookbook. They raised $57,770. In March 2016, the team published the first chapter of the book for free. It details a list of compounds that have been research and could be used to increase lifespan. In short:

Myelin Thickness – The Unromantic Approach to Reaching Mastery [1,2,3]

Myelin Thickness - The Unromantic Approach to Reach Mastery [1,2,3] - myelin - 1

Introduction

The summer of 2011 portrays weeks on end of agonizing urban heat. I can vividly remember it. Most afternoons, you would find me on the track, jogging for 40 minutes to an hour. I was enjoying it, even though it was like walking into an oven.

I seldom knew how time flew by. With my earplugs on, Brian Tracy was whispering motivational stories from his program The Power of Self-Confidence. His voice was pleasant, his language simple, his advice practical – a delight!

People inherently know the concepts and ideas pushed in such books and programs. Many folks read motivational books on an ongoing basis, yet never achieve anything in their lives. They barely move a finger. It took me some time to learn that achievement is about acting in a persistent, feedback-driven, and constantly-optimizing fashion.

Ever since my earlier exposure to self-development, I knew that there is something more to personal success than mere positive self-talk.

My curiosity got me to more solid grounds when I stumbled upon Joe Dispenza book, which presented a somewhat neuroscientific approach to human achievement. It got me hooked when I read how people can, in a systematic fashion, become better versions of themselves. I became more convinced that in self-growth there’s no magic, no overnight success, and no follow your passion bland advice. It’s more about pure, deep and systematic practice.

Five Videos with Gary Vee – Grind, Hustle, Persistence…

I follow Gary Vee. He cuts through the crap and he doesn’t refrain from using offensive language.

Taking things for what they are, staying away from romanticizing personal beliefs and being ruthlessly objective. This is what I like about Gary.

Oh, and one more thing. There’s this quality that I’d like to call super-practicality – being extremely action oriented.

I usually don’t do posts that are so short, but I thought I have to pack these 5 gem-like videos with Gary so that you could get the same (if not, more) value and motivation that I get when I watch them.

I usually watch them a couple of times every week.

  1. Monday Mornings – A Rant

Good for kick-starting every week.

ColorNote – Sneak Peak into One of My Productive Daily Habits

Main

Introduction

There is no single successful individual that I follow who does not keep a daily to-do list or a notebook to write things down. Whether it’s a small spiral pad in your back pocket or an app on your smart phone, use it daily and you’ll see how your reality changes overnight (caveat: there’s no such thing as overnight success).

All my mentors swear by this habit.

I adopted it almost three years ago. Back in early 2013, I had the most basic of it. I adapted it as I went along. With time, it became more complex.

Now I keep a daily list, a monthly list, a long-term to-do list, a travel to-do list, a list for anything.

How I do it and how it impacted my life and my productivity? This is what you’re about to find out.

Laptop Entrepreneur – How I Started Making Money Online in 2015 – [Case Study]

Laptop Entrepreneur - How I Started Making Money Online in 2015 - [Case Study]

Intro

I met Andrei in 6th grade. He was the new kid. We befriended. We used to mock one of our classmates by calling him names. We came up with an interesting new entry every day. We had a lot of fun. Then, as we finished 8th grade and went to high school, our roads diverged.

It wasn’t until 6 years later when I met Andrei during a train trip to Timisoara, in Romania. I barely recognized him. Since then we kept contact. He never lost his entrepreneurial spirit. We have a lot of things to talk about when we meet.

In May 2015, I wrote a blogpost on different ways to make money online. Andrei picked it up. It was something new to him. He was on the verge of reinventing himself, so timing could not have been better. You’re about to find out what he did next. In his own words, enter Andrei.

What I’ve Been Reading Recently – My Bookshelf #7

What I've Been Reading Recently - My Bookshelf #7

Intro

One of the driving principles for spending vast amounts of time on my self-education has been inspired by Jim Rohn who said that formal education will make you a living, while self-education can make you a fortune.

Since the last blog of this kind, I added a few dozen books to my reading list. All previous book related posts are: #1 #2 #3 #4 #5 and #6.

I’ve long gone from reading personal development books only. In my experience, it’s not enough to read only motivation; yet, most people start and stop here. If I don’t add specific knowledge to develop my skills, I may get nowhere. And I cannot get specific knowledge from the abstract ideas that I see in personal development books.

Don’t get me wrong. I agree with Zig Ziglar that motivation is like showers. You have to do it daily. It’s why I always keep a personal development book at my bedside so that I can read a few minutes everyday.

As you will see in the following list, even though I read books on several different topics, most of them are interconnected. I also read research studies and textbooks. This is not a disparate strategy, but an eclectic approach to knowledge acquirement. It also helps me limit certain cognitive biases that I may fall into…

Supplements – Stack #1 – What I’m Using and What I’ve Experimented With

Supplements - Stack #1 - What I'm Using and What I've Experimented With

Introduction

June 2016 Update: I stopped using most of the supplements below (minimalistic approach). Read my about page, here, and here to understand my arguments.

Original post (August 2015):

I think that no matter how much I try to optimize my nutrition, I still have to use a few supplements.

If you consider the nutrient depleted soils in which our foods grow (hence, the poor nutrient content of foods), the increased levels of toxicity we are exposed to, the stress, the lack of sleep, and many other factors, you may understand that the recommended daily doses for vitamins, minerals, and micronutrients are sub-appreciated.

I use some supplements because I currently consider that this strategy helps me improve my healthy lifespan. So, please don’t take this as general recommendation. We are all different, we live in different environments, and we’re exposed to different epigenetic modulators. So, a careful strategy should be individually crafted.

Some of the providers of my supplements are local companies (Romanian), while some are imported. I will try to link those from local companies with their approximate Amazon counterparts (in terms of concentrations, form, and bioavailability) for convenience.

Key takeaway:

Supplements should add on top of, and not replace, a well formulated diet. They are very important, but diet is the starting point.

May 2015 Pedometer Logs – Struggling with Maintaining Weight

May 2015 Pedometer Logs - Struggling with Maintaining Weight

Introduction

Those of you following my blog are familiar with my 2 most recent trips to NYC. For the newcomers, I’ve condensed my traveling experience as digital entrepreneur in my most recent book Urban Escape.

During both of these trips I noticed that I’m struggling with maintaining my weight while following a similar nutritional approach with the one from Romania. I had to overfeed (feast) every few day just to break-even. Not that it was unpleasant or inconvenient (just saying). If I would have rigidly followed my strategy (low-calorie + daily IF + strength training) I would have lost more fat, which was not my goal.

Obviously, I was using more energy.. But how, or when?

My smartphone came with a widget that’s been running on a side screen. It’s basically a pedometer. I don’t care about how much I walk everyday, but if I can explore the data from my walking routine and analyze what’s been collected for almost a year, it’s a nice feature indeed.

So, let’s look into it.

Recent Blood Work #2 – July 2015

Recent Blood Work #2 - July 2015

Introduction

Last time I posted about my blood tests was in November 2014. I’ve taken a few other samples ever since, but not much has changed until now. So, let’s see what’s been going on.

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