One of my favorite authors shared the concept of focusing on a small shelf of books to re and re-read as opposed to constantly adding new books. The theory is the multiple readings of a smaller number of books will help you pull out more wisdom and learning from those few books. While I don’t agree wholeheartedly with this concept (as evidenced by the plethora of books I’ve recently consumed for the first time) I have to admit that there is definitely a benefit from his concept.
Another person I look up to highly recommended a mix of fiction along with more business focused books, biographies, and other non-fiction. The reasoning behind it was finding meaning and examples in story that help you better apply the concepts you’ve learned. It can also lead to comparisons to real life which may have been missed. While I lean more heavily toward nonfiction his advice still rings in my head and helps guide me towards different books at times.
One the past couple of days I’ve spent my non-coverage and/or early morning drive re-reading Once a Runner by John L Parker Jr. It’s a great story I’ve read a few times in the past focused on the fictional story of a college runner. The story is essentially one of grit and focus to achieve a huge goal.
As I read it this time around I caught a few more pieces that hadn’t sunk in until this read. There’s a portion that felt like it was written specifically for where my brain is at on one project. The funny thing is that I’ve heard similar thoughts and advice before but those words rang hollow in the past. It wasn’t until I heard it in the context of this story that the concept truly hit home. I re-read the chapter and then drove in silence as I let it sink in. For anyone interested, check out Chapter 23 with special attention to detail 😉
In addition to that very wonderful nugget there were several other ideas imparted into my brain. I’ve read them before, but it wasn’t until I’ve lived to this point that some of them finally made sense. In some cases I missed them, in others I hadn’t had relevant experiences to relate them to, and in others I was finally ready to receive the message.
Today I’m thankful for the advice of both of the individuals mentioned above. Without their insights I may not have circled back to this book when I did. I’m especially appreciative of Once a Runner as it has helped me find ways to be a better version of me.