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books

Reboot

I am going to attempt to keep better track of the books I have read with quick posts here. These won’t be full reviews per se, but rather simply a note (perhaps just to myself) that I finished it and a few of the things I am taking away. The idea is that a year or more into the future when I am trying to remember either the title of a book I read or where I picked up an idea, I can just search my own blog. Rather lazy I know and another outsourcing of memory to the machines, but what can I say.

A colleague at work reccomended the reboot.io podcast to me several months ago. It sounded interestin so I added it to my feed, but didn’t get around to listening to an episode until over the Christmas break. Wow. I was interested in the subject mentioned in the title (reclaiming the shadow) but didn’t expect to hear what I did. I had to know more.

Turns out the podcast is a promo for a book of the same name, so a few days later I was absolutely devouring this book. The big idea I walked away from is that many (all?) of us bring our unresolved childhood issues to work for the very simple reason that that’s where most of us are most of the time so where else do we have to work them out. I am a little learly of the line of thinking that blames everything on childhood, but the way that Jerry tells the story drew me in. It’s very personal.

Another amazing take away are the questions that are peppered throughout the book, some in line with the text and some at the end as invitations to journal. Here are some of my favorites:

  • What am I not saying that needs to be said? What am I saying (in words or deeds) that is not being heard? What’s being said that I am not hearing?
  • How would I act were I to remember who I am? What choices would I make, what actions would I take, if I regularly said the things that needed to be said?
  • When our employees and colleagues leave our sides and our company, what do I want them to say about our time together?
  • The question “Does my life have meaning” is really another set of questions “In what ways have I been brave? and “How have I been kind?”
  • How will I know my work is done?
  • What would it feel like to not have to know?
  • What might my reluctance about looking inward say about the protective patterns of my life? How might such reticense be shaping my organization and our ability to consider alternative possibilities?

If you are looking for something to shake you out of our ledership rut and set you in the direction of doing the hard, but meaningful work of self discovery with through an amazing combination of real stories from the front lines of startups, developmental psychology and budhism, then this is for you.

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