My Top 5 Posts For 2017

I thought I would summarise my blogging year for 2017 with my top 5 most read posts this year.  For a few years now, I have been posting every Friday for which I feel quite proud. Until you read how there are other bloggers who write nearly every day or even more than once a day! People blog for a variety of reasons though so for now I’m happy with once a week.

Originally, when I started posting on Fridays, it was with the intention of writing the post live on the Friday. But the more I read and learn about blogging and how to make it interesting, the longer it takes to actually post a blog.

I’m still trying to find a niche that combines what I like writing about with what is popular and actually gets read.  This led me to looking at my stats for which posts gets the most views.  Below are my top 5 for 2017: Continue reading “My Top 5 Posts For 2017”

Refuse to Choose by Barbara Sher

Refuse to Choose by Barbara Sher

I came across this book, Refuse to Choose, while I was looking at different VA services website and one of them had recommended this book. I am so glad I found this book. It’s a lovely book about how to follow all the things that interest you and you are passionate about. The author calls these people ‘Scanners’ and it makes being indecisive and wanting to do everything acceptable.

Another Notebook!

The things that she suggests you do are not really new concepts but they way she writes about it makes it all feel ok. As with nearly every single book or course I read now, they all start with buying a brand-new journal in which to write in. For this book, your notebook or journal needs to be new and special for you to write, draw and doodle all your fantastic ideas. Something like Leonardo da Vinci’s notebooks. I dutifully complied.

Even though I did start my new notebook, I haven’t actually kept up to date with it. It’s currently sitting pretty in my bookshelf along with my notebooks on accounting, tax, blogging, writing and the 3 page a day(!) diary.

Chapters

The book is split up into two parts and 19 chapters. The first part describes what is a scanner and the second part describes what kind of scanner are you? These are the chapters in the book:

Part one
1. All about Scanners
2. What’s Wrong with me?
3. Scanner Panic
4. Commitment Phobia
5. Too busy to do What I Love
6. I won’t do anything if I can’t do everything
7. I can’t get started
8. I never finish anything

Part two
9. About Cyclical Scanners
10. Are you a Double Agent?
11. Are you a Sybil?
12. Are you a Plate Spinner?
13. About Sequential Scanners
14. Are you a Serial Specialist?
15. Are you a Serial Master
16. Are you a Jack of all Trades?
17. Are you a Wanderer?
18. Are you a Sampler?
19. Are you a High-Speed Indecisive?

Type Of Scanner

In Part two, at the beginning of each chapter is a list of questions about that particular type of scanner and if you can answer yes to a lot of these questions then that is the type of scanner that you are. You can be more than one type of scanner. When I went through this, I got Jack of all trades and Double Agent. It then gives a few examples of people in that group and what they do and then lists out potential careers of types of careers and finally what type of tools a scanner needs. There is a list of tools for a scanner in the appendix which is useful as most of these things I’ve not really ever heard of. Some of favourites are the portable dream deck where you can keep several different projects going at the same time, the scanners day book, A ring binder for all your different projects and a catalogue of ideas with potential. Actually, I think I would probably like them all.

The Good Enough Job

Another big theme I found in the book is to find a good enough job if you can’t find the perfect job and then you can spend the rest of your time pursuing the things that you enjoy. There are several chapters that I want to go back and read again but it really does make you feel better that its ok not to have a niche figured out and pursuing. You don’t need to be a specialist and focus all your energies on the one thing, if you enjoy doing several things at the same time.

If, like me you are wanting to everything that you find interesting without giving up anything, this book is for you. I can see why the VA feels like this book is a must for all other VA’s out there because you can offer lots of different services that you are good at as a VA.

The author, Barbara Sher, also has a website and mailing list which can be found here: http://barbarasclub.com/

Go and enjoy this book as I try and figure out how to organise my life so I can do everything I want to pursue!

Buy the book from amazon here:

 

Hands Free Mama by Rachel Macy Stafford

Hands Free Mama is an amazing book and Rachel has a way of writing which is very emotional and very raw.   The book starts with turning off your gadgets so you can spend more time with your children and partner.  However, it goes into more depth and just turning off your mobile phone is not enough, you need to connect and be present for your kids. Continue reading “Hands Free Mama by Rachel Macy Stafford”

The Price of Privilege – Madeline Levine, Ph.D.

The Price of Privilege is another parenting book highlighting the plight of parenting in this day and age. The author is a psychologist who treats a lot of wealthy family kids – especially teenagers.  The case studies themselves are enough to make you feel unbelievably sad and unhappy. It gets you thinking about your childhood and that of your kids.  You hope and pray that you are doing everything right and the doing your best is enough. But there are so many little incidents that ring true that make you think, is that me? Will that happen to my girls? Continue reading “The Price of Privilege – Madeline Levine, Ph.D.”

How to live on 24 hours a day by Arnold Bennett

This book, ‘How to live on 24 hours a day’ is about how to use your time more effectively during a working week.  It assumes you get home for about 7, eat and rest and then you still have about 3 hours to do something productive.  I’m not too sure what I think about this book. At times it can be a little condescending and patronising but I have to remember that it was written in 1908 originally. Continue reading “How to live on 24 hours a day by Arnold Bennett”

The Little Book of Talent by Daniel Coyle

The Little Book of Talent – 52 Tips for Improving Skills by Daniel Coyle

This is a follow on from the last book, the Talent Code, my review for which can be found here.  The 52 tips are split up into three sections as follows:

Introduction
  • Part one: Getting started
Stare, steal and Be Willing to Be Stupid

Tip 1-12

  • Part two: Improving skills
Find the sweet spot, then reach

Tip 13-42

  • Part three: Sustaining Progress
Embrace Repetition, Cultivate Grit, and Keep Big Goals Secret

Tip 43-52

  • Glossary
  • Appendix: The New Science of Talent Development

 

In the last book, he looked at talent from the point of view of a student and a coach.  In this book he mainly focuses on honing your talent from the point of view of a student and what a student needs to do to become great.  There are 52 tips, however, I have listed out the 17 most important steps that I found useful in a previous blog here.

You can also download this by following this link: Cultivating your talent in 17 steps.

This book too, I found very useful and as my children are at and starting school, this is something I want them to try and practice in all the areas of their studies.  Some of the things that he mentions I can see in my older daughter happens almost instinctively without much input from me, especially with her reading and spelling new words. However, I also want it to happen in her maths and her dance and other after school activities apart from watching spongebob squarepants on loop.

Little book of talent book cover

 

 

 

The Talent Code by Daniel Coyle

The Talent Code is a very interesting book for anyone learning and trying to become talented in their chosen activity.  It is also good for people wanting to coach these people as it also looks at it from the coaches point of view. The book mainly goes through case studies of different coaches and talented individual from different talent ‘hotbeds’.  These talent hotbeds are different places from around the world which all tend to have some similar ideas on how to practice your specific skill. Continue reading “The Talent Code by Daniel Coyle”