The Power of Books

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“A book is a dream that you hold in your hand.” –Neil Gaiman

Books change lives.

I learned how to read with Dr. Seuss books.  Oh, the Places You’ll Go taught me to dream big.

I also learned with a collection of Little Golden Books.  One of my favorite stories was The Little Engine that Could.  It taught me to believe in myself and to keep trying, especially when things get tough.

Books have given me access to the world’s best wisdom, and have stretched my mind past any conceivable horizon.  They are the ultimate form of self-education, and the ultimate tool for personal empowerment.

Tony Robbins is also a big believer in the power of books.  In the book, MONEY Master the Game: 7 Simple Steps to Financial Freedom, he reminds us of the power of books as readers to change our lives, and as authors to change the world.

Books Help Us Find the Answers

Books help us find the answers, wherever we are, whoever we are.  They are always there for us.

Via MONEY Master the Game: 7 Simple Steps to Financial Freedom:

“The financial crisis caused tremendous pain, but it also made us reevaluate what’s most important in our lives–things that have nothing to do with money.  It was time to get back to basics, to the values that have sustained us through troubled times before.  For me, it made me remember the days when I was sleeping in my car homeless and searching for a way to change my life.  How did I do it? Books?  They helped to establish me.  I’ve always been a voracious reader: as a young man, I decided I was going to read a book a day.  I figured leaders are readers.  I took a speed-reading course.  I didn’t quite read a book a day, but over seven years, I did read more than 700 books to find the answers to help myself and others.  Books on psychology, time management, history, philosophy, physiology.  I wanted to know about anything that could immediately change the quality of my life and anyone else’s.”

Books Can Teach Us Limitless Possibility

So many people have dreamed bigger because of the books they have read.

Via MONEY Master the Game: 7 Simple Steps to Financial Freedom:

“But the books I read as a child made the deepest impression.  They were my ticket out of a world of pain: a world with no compelling future.  They transported me to a realm of limitless possibilities.  I can remember Ralph Waldo Emerson’s essay on self-reliance, and the lines ‘There is a time in every man’s education when he arrives at the conviction that envy is ignorance; that imitation is suicide; that he must take himself for better, for worse, as his portion.’  Another was a book by the philosopher James Allen, As a Man Thinketh, echoing the biblical proverb ‘As a man thinketh, so his heart will be.’ It came to me at a time when my mind was a battlefield filled with fear.  He taught me that everything we create in our lives starts with thought.”

Books Give Us Access to Great Leaders, Great Thinkers, and Great Doers

Books help us learn how great people have done great things, and how we too, can unleash what we’re capable of.

Via MONEY Master the Game: 7 Simple Steps to Financial Freedom:

“I devoured biographies of great leaders, great thinkers, great doers, like Abraham Lincoln, Andrew Carnegie, John F. Kennedy, and Viktor Frankl.  I realized that the great men and women of the world had experienced pain and suffering much greater than my own.  They weren’t just lucky or even fortunate; somehow there was something in them, an invisible force that would not let them settle for less than they could do, or be, or give.  I realized that biography is not destiny; that my past was not equal to my future.

Another favorite was an American classic from 1937, Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich.  Hill spent two decades in the early 20th century interviewing 500 of the world’s most accomplished individuals, from Andrew Carnegie, to Henry Ford, to Theodore Roosevelt, to Thomas Edison, finding out what them them tick.  He discovered that they all shared a relentless focus on their goals, and a combination of burning desire, faith, and persistence to achieve them.  Hill’s message that ordinary people could overcome any obstacle to success gave hope to a generation of reader’s struggling through the Great Depression.  Think and Grow Rich became one of the best-selling books of all time.”

Books Help Us Build a Better Future

Authors that share their gifts or the gifts of others, help people improve the quality of their life, and build a new and better future.

Via MONEY Master the Game: 7 Simple Steps to Financial Freedom:

“Napoleon Hill’s quest has become an inspiration to me.  Like his classic, this book is modeled on seeking out the best of the best in the world, from Warren Buffet to Sir Richard Branson–and including the man that experts in the field have called the Edison of our day: Ray Kurzweil, who invented the first digital music synthesizers, the first software to translate text into speech; he’s the man behind Siri on your iPhone.  He developed a device that allows the blind to walk the streets and read road signs and order from any menu.  Today Ray is head of engineering development for Google.  But I wanted to write a book that went beyond the psychology and science of achievement to come up with a  real plan, with real tools that you could use to build a better future for yourself and your family.  It would be a handbook, a blueprint, an owner’s manual for the new economy.”

If you want more out of life, somewhere there is a book on a shelf that will be your friend and guide.

If you’re an author, write with might, and birth your book that will light the way for others.

The power of books is in our hands.

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Image by Abhi Sharma.

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