When I think of the superpower I’d most like to have (sure, flying would be awesome), I usually think of books.
I’d like to be able to put my finger on a book and be able to absorb the information. (And to feel the pleasure I get from reading.)
What I notice about myself is that my eyes are often bigger than my, um, eyes. In other words, I buy more books than I read. I often start reading one book, really like it, then pick up another. More books do not get finished that get finished.
Part of feels a little guilty for not finishing a book. Like I’m throwing away perfectly good food or something. Being wasteful in some way. But I know that not really my voice in my head; it’s just some old programming playing itself out.
Because here’s how I really look at the situation.
I don’t buy books.
I invest in them.
Books give me a return, a return of information, ideas, or pleasure.
I can get my return on that investment in just one sentence. To me, one new idea is worth many times over whatever amount I invested in the book.
Case in point. I bought Seth Godin’s new book Linchpin. I’m currently reading at least three other books. I don’t know where Seth’s book falls in my queue. But during coffee in the bright sunshine this morning, I picked up the book and just opened to a page.
I came across a story about Steve Jobs telling one of his people who was working on perfecting something before getting it out the door. According to the story, Jobs said three words to the man.
“Real artists ship.”
I took this to mean that you gotta get your stuff out the door and into the marketplace. You have to let people experience you and your idea.
If I never read another word of that book, it was $15 well invested for me.
Even if you’re not into books, don’t just spend your money.Invest it.