I made a promise to myself at the beginning of the year that I would double the amount of non-fiction that I read. Not just any non-fiction, I’m only interested in those books that truly have valuable information that will help me become better.
I started by reading It’s Not How Good You Are, It’s How Good You Want To Be by Paul Arden. While this book is centered around the advertising field, the lessons in here are honestly great for anyone that simply wants to get ahead in their career and life in general.
It’s a very quick read and can easily fit into your pocket or purse that you can pull out to read on the commute to work (if you’re not driving of course) or during any downtime you may have.
Here are my favorite takeaways from It’s Not How Good You Are, It’s How Good You Want to Be:
Without having a goal, it’s difficult to score.
We need a goal and have to set plans so that we are able to properly measure success.
Do not seek praise, seek criticism
We love praise but get upset about criticism. Constructive criticism is good and needed. Instead of constantly seeking approval, why don’t we find ways to make our work better?
Don’t be afraid to work with the best
Sure, the best people won’t be the easiest to work with but so what? I’m sure you don’t want to spend the majority of your career surrounded by mediocrity. Apply for that job, work for that person even if they are deemed difficult to others. The right people and the right situations can catapult your career to new heights. If these difficult people are truly the “best”, isn’t it worth it?
This also reminded me of another important point: stop being afraid of competition. Healthy competition is necessary. We can’t close ourselves off to working with people and hoard all of the information for ourselves. Some of our best ideas can come when we bounce information off of each other. Sharing information with people does not harm you in any way. Just because you share an idea with someone or show them how to do a particular thing doesn’t mean that they can perform at your level.
Do not try to win awards
Too many times we do things simply for the recognition. Awards are great but it shouldn’t be why you do a particular thing. Awards are judged by other people and what they think you deserve. Be true to yourself. If you are consistently and honestly doing your best work, rewards will come if they are merited.
It’s Not How Good You Are, It’s How Good You Want to Be is filled with gems and provides “original and logical answers to everyday questions.” This is simply a great guide for anyone who wants to get ahead and strive to make the “thinkable unthinkable.” It’s also less than $6.00 on Amazon, so how can you really argue with that?
Who has read this book? If so, what did you think?