I read The Slight Edge after hearing it recommended by Sean Spooner in his podcast.
It is a really powerful book with an important message:
Your philosophy creates your attitude, your actions, your results and these create your life. Little steps, compounded, do make a difference. The things you do every single day, the things that don’t look dramatic, that don’t even look like they matter, do matter. That they not only make a difference – they make all the difference.
The book describes the power of good habits and how quickly bad habits form. A message that really resonated with me is, “It’s more effective to take one business-building action every day for a week, than to take seven… all at once and then take the rest of the week off… The daily rhythm of the thing starts to change you. It becomes part of your routine, and as it does, it becomes part of who you are. That doesn’t happen with a once-in-a-while, all-out effort.”
Towards the end, I felt that the book became a bit preachy. This idea of doing something every day to improve became quite draining. I was reading the book in bed and was lying there feeling very guilty for all of the things I hadn’t done that day. The fact that I was reading this in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic and all routine I had had been cancelled out in the lockdown made the guilt even worse!
What have I learned by reading the book?
I need to try to find ways to create habits and do things regularly to improve. These things matter and will add up over time.
I’ve just finished reading Stuffocation by James Wallman. If I’m honest, I found it really hard going. Ironically, the book itself is now just ‘stuff’ that I’ve got left in the house that I don’t need.
It’s not that that I didn’t like the idea of the book. Living more with less is a powerful message that has really resonated with me. It’s more that this message could have been written in about two pages and not the 358 that this takes up.
The key message in the book is that stuff doesn’t bring happiness – experiences bring happiness. And there’s an important environmental message accompanying this too. These principles have really hit home with me and I’m going to do my best to follow them in future.
The most useful part of the book is the appendix: The 7 habits of Highly Effective Experientials. Here is my interpretation of these seven habits:
- Know your stuff: Only buy stuff that makes a difference and adds value to your life. Do you really need it?
- Find your ladder: Do something that you love. Life is about enjoying the journey, not reaching a destination.
- Be here now: Don’t treat experiences as a tick list. Enjoy them – be in the flow and savour the moment.
- Be your own audience: Do things for you, not so you can share your experiences on Instagram to make yourself look great and impress others.
- Put people first: Put simply, connections are what makes life. Build them and enjoy them.
- Spend well and feel good: Use your resources carefully, consciously and sustainably. Be mindful of the energy, time and money that you use so that using it makes you feel good.
- Choose life, choose experience: Be less goal-oriented and worry a little less about achieving the future. Slow down and enjoy life and value experience. Memories live longer than dreams. Be happy.
Recently my daughter and I have fallen in love with Daisy Butters books.
Daisy Butters always seems to find herself getting into trouble somehow, and it’s never her fault. She, and her best friend Gabby, get up to all sorts of mischief which usually ends up embarrassing her mum, or her neighbour Mrs Pike. Daisy takes great delight in winding up her enemy, Jack Beechwhistle.
Written by Kes Gray, the books are really funny to read as an adult. Lily laughs her head off at the adventures which are narrated by the child herself which makes them even funnier!
So far, our favourite has been Daisy and the Trouble with Life which is all about a strawberry dib dab.
So far we have read…
We are currently reading Daisy and the Trouble with Chocolate. But we still have Daisy and the Trouble with Vampires from the library still to read! There are also some Daisy books suitable for younger readers and we have read 006 and a Bit and Eat Your Peas a few years ago!
The author has started to write books starring Daisy’s archenemy Jack Beechwhistle and we will be reading Jack Beechwhistle and the Rise of the Hairy Horror next.
I can highly recommend the stories, Lily is seven, nearly eight and we love reading them together!
Leave a comment with your own book recommendations!