The above photo is of me, Ally Gregory, the author of this blog, mom, business coach, runner, and avid reader.
As business owners, it is often pushed on us to read all the newest and hottest non-fiction books. Books that are touted as so profound that they will make you reimagine the way you run your business or maybe reinvent business itself. Put your profit first by building a story brand that helps you win friends and influence people. We work hard all day and then spend our downtime stressing ourselves out by reading how we should make our business better, faster, stronger. Not giving ourselves anytime to let our mind wander. Giving no time to give our minds the freedom to ponder, to be curious.
Read More Fiction
It is unwise to believe that we can only learn about business and leadership from these non-fiction books. The problems we face day-to-day are rarely unusual, rather they’re simple and timeless. We’ve found the best way to conquer these issues and rise past them is to look within ourselves and maintain a level of empathy for those around us, both of these can be honed by reading fiction. Here is why we highly recommend reading fiction to become a better business owner and a better leader.
1. Increases Empathy
Most of us walk around believing that the way we perceive the world is absolute. Well-written fiction allows us see the world through another’s eyes, shifting our worldview and our mindset. Being able to view the world from other perspectives makes us more effective in engaging others and managing ourselves.
2. Enhances Creativity
Escaping into a book forces us to think about our world differently. By expanding the boundaries of our mind, we can see past a problem to possible solutions. Next time you’re looking for fresh marketing ideas, invite the cast of Harry Potter into your brain storming session!
3. Improves Leadership Skills
Reading fiction can help you improve your management skills, rethink how you make decisions, and lead people. The narratives of great fiction enhances your ability to understand complicated reality with more nuance and get to better conclusions and outcomes. Scroll down for examples!
4. Reading is Rewarding
Taking the time for yourself, to sit down with a good book is rewarding. Taking in a story is innately gratifying for us, as humans. Getting lost in a story detaches you from your day to day worries and inserts you in a world where conflict is resolved in just a few hundred pages or less in a way that is triumphant for our souls.
5. Improves Your Writing
Reading fiction exposes you to new words, phrases and styles of writing. It exposes you to different styles of writing, expanding your comprehension and your vernacular. This, in turn, improves your own written communication. (And, hopefully, verbal too!)
6. It is Fun!
Yes, please take the time to sit with literary masterpieces. The greats, both old and new. But, please, I insist you take the time for a quick read, a beach read. A John Grisham. An old whodunit. A book that you are unable to put down. Remember that reading should be fun! This kind of entertainment reduces stress and provides an escape that allows us to return to the real world invigorated.
Now that we’ve convinced you to spend time with a good book, you’re probably wondering what you should read. Below is a list of some of our all-time favorites and recent reads.
Cat’s Cradle – Kurt Vonnegut
The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath
1984 – Haruki Murakami
Frankenstein – Mary Shelley
Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams
The Night Circus – Erin Morgenstern
Fledgling – Octavia Butler
You Shall Know Our Velocity – Dave Eggers
Fairytale – Stephen King
How High we Go In The Dark – Sequoia Nagamatsu
And Then There Were None – Agatha Christie
Flowers for Algernon – Daniel Keyes
Hail Mary – Andy Weir
A Man Called Ove – Fredrik Backman
Seriously, we could keep going with this list. If you want a different book suggestion or want to have a nerdy conversation about any of these books, contact us today.