I’ve always loved books. Oddly it turns out the three best books I’ve ever read happened by accident.
Rich Dad, Poor Dad
I’d gone from school (work), to college (work) to work (work) on the usual path that a lot of people in Ireland do. Get educated and get a job and keep working. Three years later I’d worked hard & well but was burnt out, so had hopped on a Quantas flight and found myself in a house on stilts in Caboolture, north of Brisbane, Australia. I was over doing some horse training and living nearby for a few weeks. One evening I was picking out a book to read, and stumbled across ‘Rich Dad Poor Dad’ on the bookshelf. I’d never heard of it before. It’s an entertaining read, with a lot about building up assets and making money from property. But what COMPLETELY clicked in my brain was the concept of earning money by making a product once, and selling it multiple times. I wasn’t sold on the property side of things as the property market was in too much of a bubble in Ireland but the asset idea stuck firmly in my head. When I came back to Ireland from then on I was always working on some type of ‘creating an asset project’ in my spare time.
Fast forward a few years later. I was still on the ‘create an asset’ quest. I had tried a good few things… writing books, cdroms, online learning sites, jewellery, various websites and a equestrian society. I’d dabbled in apps as well publishing a range of about 30 on iOS and a few less than that on Android. All cool stuff and great fun to do, but no home runs yet.
I hadn’t used twitter much, so a friend grabbed my mobile and insisted I needed to get on it if I wanted to know what was going on in the startup scene in Dublin. About 2 mins later I was on it, and she had me following all the startup people she thought would be interesting. One day, I read a tweet about an app book some guy had published. I opened the link, saw he had a book on amazon and ordered it. That was about 10 months ago. Since then Chocolate Lab Apps was founded and things have been exciting. All totally by accident, but with a fair amount of effort.
The Slight Edge
This was another accident. I was reading a techie blog post. The author had written something along the lines of ‘if you are reading this, stop right now and order this book from amazon’. You tend to read these things and not do anything, but I thought if this guy was recommending it, it has to be worth a shot. The book arrived about a week later.
It turns out (ironically) that a lot of the stuff in it is EXACTLY how I approach my horse training. Live in the moment. Turns out with my lovely horse this is the best way not to get bucked off. Everything you do today is with the goal to be a tiny fraction better tomorrow. This is EXACTLY what I do with the horse. To succeed more you have to fail more. Doing the right stuff is painful at the start but gets easier. When you make the right choice you won’t see the results straight away, but they will come. 100% the same with horses. I was applying all this in my horse training but didn’t realise it really works in all aspects of your life, from to friends, knowledge, health, food, you name it.
So, if you are reading this post by accident, perhaps you’ll read one of these books and let me know what happens