Author Archives: AJ Kessler

Best Books of 2015

I read a lot, at least a book a week, and get asked for recommendations. Rather than continuing to respond privately to emails, I have semi-regularly posted my recommendations here. Below are my favorite reads from 2015, not in any … Continue reading

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Momentum Creates the Ability to Seize Opportunity

Keep yourself as busy as possible.  Good opportunities are going to come up along side you.  It’s a lot easier to steer into one when you’re already moving than it is to try to catch up to one when you’re … Continue reading

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Showing Up

As you go through life, you’ll meet the people who have it all figured out. The girl who, in 8th grade, starting taking zoology classes at the local junior college because she knew she wanted to be a Giraffe veterinarian. … Continue reading

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Creating v. Finding

The problem, often not discovered until late in life, is that when you look for things like love, meaning, motivation, it implies they are sitting behind a tree or under a rock. The most successful people recognize, that in life … Continue reading

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Contentment

Once you obtain a certain level of success, some people start to act strangely.  They wonder aloud why you’re not content with what you’ve already achieved.  Whether it stems from a desire to see you not get further ahead or … Continue reading

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First Principles: Internalization

As a 10 year old, I was barely taller than a washing machine and I weighed less than half as much.  But I was fast, so I played on a competitive soccer team.  Or, more accurately, I played when the bigger, stronger, … Continue reading

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Reading Recommendations – 2014Q1

In school, we read a lot of fiction.  We are instructed to look for similes and metaphors, to search for the hidden meaning in the text, to guess at what the author was really implying or thinking about.  Because of this, even … Continue reading

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First Principles: Mindset

The worst thing my parents ever told me was that I was smart.  When they bought me a toy piano when I was four, my dad tried to teach me to peck out the notes of Mary Had A Little Lamb.  … Continue reading

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Best Books I Read In 2013

I read a lot and am often asked for recommendations.  Rather than continuing to respond privately to emails, I decided to post my recommendations from 2013 here. I’ll continue to post recommendations, either in separate posts or under some consolidated … Continue reading

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Superiority

“There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.” – Ernest Hemingway

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Declare Victory or Failure

Whenever you start a project, you should have a plan for finishing it. One outcome is to declare victory, to find that moment when you have satisfied your objectives and reached a goal. The other outcome, which feels like a … Continue reading

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The Greatest Enemy of Knowledge

The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge. –Stephen Hawking

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Perspective, Pt 2

A Jewish man was sitting in a Starbucks reading an Arab newspaper. A friend of his, who happened to be in the same store, noticed this strange phenomenon. Very upset, he approached him and said: ‘Moshe, have you lost your … Continue reading

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How to Say Nothing in 500 Words

Paul McHenry Roberts (1917-1967) taught college English for over twenty years, first at San Jose State College and later at Cornell University. He wrote numerous books on linguistics, including Understanding Grammar (1954), Patterns of English (1956), and Understanding English (1958).  Paul also wrote this essay, which … Continue reading

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Systematic Learning

Chris Guillebeau was interested in building a lifestyle business (i.e. something that requires little startup capital and lots of flexibility).  Instead of picking a business at random, Chris did what we should all do. In The $100 Startup, Chris started … Continue reading

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