Learn something new every day

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I am a huge fan of turning my car into a virtual classroom, and I regularly listen to podcasts or audiobooks on my commute rather than music. I find that it makes traffic a little bit more bearable, and helps me to never stop learning.

If you’ve never taken advantage of an Audible free trial, it’s a great place to start. You’ll get your first audiobook free, and can cancel after the 30 days if you’re not digging it. Your local library may also offer a collection of audiobooks that you can e-borrow for free, so check out that resource, too! You can learn more about two of my favorite self-development books here. Some of my other favorite Audible listens have included this book about the Zodiac Killer and any John Grisham novel ever (I’m kind of obsessed with learning about law and crime).

If paying for audiobooks isn’t your thing, podcasts are definitely the way to go. They’re typically 30 minutes to two hours long, which is awesome for those of us who like a variety of content. Bonus: they’re totally free and you can set it up so that new episodes auto download to your phone. Here’s a few of my go-to podcasts:

Undisclosed || If you loved Serial, you’ll love this spin off series that includes a little bit more legal discussion. This season, they’re analyzing the case of Joey Watkins, who has been convicted of murder in Rome, GA.

Women, Work, and Worth || If you’re a long-time reader of this blog, you know how much I love Mavenly.co. Women, Work, and Worth is a great resource for young women trying to figure out their purpose and live their best life. Kate does a great job of recruiting expert guests to share their knowledge. Fo’ free.

The Dave Ramsey Show || I’ve become just a little bit obsessed with becoming a financial boss this year. I love how real Dave keeps it, and that there’s three hours of new content every weekday, which means I can listen to parts that apply to me and fast forward through ones that don’t (like when he’s advising on how to teach kids about money).

Radiolab Presents: More Perfect || This is a podcast miniseries about the Supreme Court. They do an incredible job talking about high impact Court cases and giving insight into how our nation’s most important part of the Judicial System runs.

The Tim Ferriss Show || I love Tim Ferriss’ podcast simply because it’s created for people like me who love to learn. There’s a wider variety of content than many of the other podcasts I listen to, but I especially love when he tackles health and fitness topics. All-in-all, a great listen for lifelong learners that will inspire you to research a little more in your free time.

QLQB Reads: You Are a Badass

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It’s time for another installment of QLQB Reads! Today, I’m talking about Jen Sincero‘s book, You Are a Badass. It’s one of my favorites, and it is especially great as an audiobook, since Jen reads it herself! She’s funny and she is REAL. This book is the most no-nonsense self development book out there. Besides, her name is Jen. She’s gotta be awesome. See, video:

This book is for you if: you think personal development books are dumb, but you totally need a little kick in the butt. Pep talks are your jam, or you love Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. You like to laugh. Your life is in a little bit of a rut and you are totally sick of it. You want to listen to your book of choice (I’ll say it again, this audiobook is the greatest) — I even listened to it for the entirety of a half marathon once.

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Top three takeaways: 

  • Figuring out who you are and what you want is going to be tough, but it’s so important. We are constantly bombarded by what we “should” be or have or do. We have subconcious beliefs that are deeply entwined, especially our beliefs about money and success. It’s important to recognize that we’ve been influenced by people, past events, and experiences, and that in order to get exactly what we want, we have to a) figure out what that is for ourselves, b) surround ourselves with people who will support us, and c) get rid of our limiting beliefs that we can’t have exactly what we want.
  • Gratitude is a game changer. Sincero suggests writing down ten things at the end of each day that you’re grateful for. Gratitude keeps your thoughts positive, which allows you to operate at your highest possible frequency. Viewing our lives through a lens of gratitude also helps us to put negative occurrences into perspective — even on the worst days, there is always, always something to be grateful for.
  • Believe that we live in a world of limitless possibilities. Jen makes a great point — what do you have to lose? Assuming that everything you want is there for the taking, and that it’s totally within your control to go out there, kick butt, and take it empowers you to go after what you want. It enables you to take risks, fail sometimes, and get back up and go get it because you truly believe that nothing is impossible.

Three favorite quotes (sorry, this time there are four):

  • “You are responsible for what you say and do. You are not responsible for whether people freak out about it.”
  • “You are loved. Massively. Ferociously. Unconditionally. The Universe is totally freaking out about how awesome you are. It’s got you wrapped in a warm gorilla hug of adoration. It wants to give you everything you desire. It wants you to be happy. It wants you to see what it sees in you.”
  • “Even though they’re often doing it out of love and concern, having others smear their fear and worry all over you is the last thing you need when you’re strengthening your superhero muscles to step out and take some risks, so I highly recommend keeping your mouth shut around people who are gonna bring you down. Instead, seek out those who are already totally kicking butt (or who are lifiting up their foot to do so), or people who you know will be supportive, and confide in them. Because you’ll have your own internal freak show to deal with as you try to overcome the objections from your own BS.”
  • “It never ceases to amaze me the precious time we spend chasing the squirrels around our brains, playing out our dramas, worrying about unwanted facial hair, seeking adoration, justifying our actions, complaining about slow Internet connections, dissecting the lives of idiots, when we are sitting in the middle of a full-blown miracle that is happening right here, right now. We’re on a planet that somehow knows how to rotate on its axis and follow a defined path while it hurtles through space! Our hearts beat! We can see! We have love, laughter, language, living rooms, computers, compassion, cars, fire, fingernails, flowers, music, medicine, mountains, muffins!”

How I’ve adopted You Are a Badass into my life: I listen to this book whenever I need a pep talk. It makes me laugh, and it makes me laugh at myself, especially when I’m totallyfreakingout. After reading it the first time, I started a gratitude journal. It also ties in really well with The Miracle Morning’s call to visualize, since Jen advocates visualizing exactly what you want and believing that it can be yours.

Should you read it? Yes. Even better, you should listen to it. The audiobook is a great investment, because you can use it as a pick me up whenever you need a good laugh or a little reminder that you are unstoppable.

Convinced? Buy the audiobook here, the physical book here, or the Kindle edition here.  Have you already read it? Share your thoughts in the comments!

QLQB Reads: The Miracle Morning

One of my (not so secret) passions is devouring personal development books. I love learning about other people’s paths to success, and I think Charlie Jones hit the nail on the head: “You will be the same person in five years as you are today except for the people you meet and the books you read.”

Enter my newest series: QLQB Reads. My goal is to provide reviews that cover the basics of the content while giving you enough insight to decide if you should read it for yourself, all in a quick (and easy!) to read format.

If you’re not currently a reader, getting into the personal development genre can be scary. Lucky for you, I’ve got some of my favorites queued up on Amazon for you here. I am a reader and a listener: if you’re afraid of physically reading, audiobooks are an awesome alternative.

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Today we’re talking about The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod. TMM is my current favorite personal development book because it’s so easy to implement in your own life. And because it works!

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What is The Miracle Morning? The Miracle Morning is a way of structuring the first hour of your day so that you set yourself up for maximum success. It gives you more time to be productive, and it may even turn you into a morning person.

This book is for you if: you feel like you need more hours in a day. If you don’t think you’re a morning person. If your day job doesn’t energize you and you need to rediscover your passion. It’s also for you if you feel like you’re a little lost or you’re in a bit of a funk.

Top three takeaways: 

  • The Miracle Morning consists of starting your day at least an hour earlier and then going through your morning routine called SAVERS: Silence (or meditation), Affirmations, Visualization, Exercise, Reading, and Scribing. Then, a healthy breakfast.
  • Want to be better at waking up? Put your alarm clock across the room, force yourself to brush your teeth and drink a glass of water, and then either take a shower or put on your gym clothes. He’s right, after all of those steps, you don’t want to get back in bed.
  • You are as rested as you convince yourself to be. Hal insists that you can feel rested or exhausted after any number of hours of sleep, and that it totally depends on how you convince your mind to view the number of hours. I totally have to agree: before, I thought I needed seven hours, but after a few Miracle Mornings after only five or six hours, I still felt rested and ready because I went to be pumped to wake up.

Three favorite quotes:

  • “There is nothing to fear, because you cannot fail – only learn, grow, and become better that you’ve ever been before.”
  • “Our outer world will always be a reflection of our inner world. Our level of success is always going to parallel our level of personal development. Until we dedicate time each day to developing ourselves into the person we need to be to create the life we want, success is always going to be a struggle to attain.”
  • “Always remember that where you are is a result of who you were, but where you go depends entirely on who you choose to be from this moment on.”

How I’ve adopted the Miracle Morning into my life: Over the last week, I’ve begun getting up at 6:00 AM and starting my day with the SAVERS method. I leave for work feeling energized and accomplished, and I can honestly say that I look forward to my morning routine. I tried waking up at 5:30 AM yesterday and overslept, so I may need to ease myself into waking up even earlier (but I totally want to).

Should you read it? Yes! Yes yes yes yes yes. This is my favorite self development book since I first discovered Brian Tracy, and I love that guy. Miracle Morning is a quick read, and should definitely be on your list.

Convinced? Buy the audiobook here, the physical book here, or the Kindle edition here.  Have you already read it? Share your thoughts in the comments!