November 28, 2016, by Joshua Smith

3 books to read at University that will change your life.

If you have big dreams and want to become more productive (or are just sick of the status quo) – here are 3 of the best books around for making those positive changes a reality.


SWITCH – How to change things when things are hard, by Chip and Dan Heath.

A book that has so many “ahhh” and “oooh” moments – it focuses in on the psychology of how people actually make changes, and more importantly how to make the changes easier.

The book uses a great example in the opening chapter about shrinking changes, citing a very amusing popcorn study.

However I have a modern example on shrinking changes; the success of the 5p bag – Plastic bag use here in the UK recently dropped by 85% in the UK.

It dropped from 7 BILLION to 500 million in just 6 months. That’s a huge change.

Notice how the environmental experts could of told us that plastic poses a huge pollution population, that it takes 100’s of years to break down, or that it’s ingested by animals.

I’m pretty sure they’ve told us that already, and it didn’t work.

The 5p tax changed the game by shrinking the change, it altered the behaviour patterns of people at check outs who were automatically using numerous free bags before.

Now they were bringing them from home, buying bags for life, their behaviour completely changed almost overnight.

For anything to change, someone has to start acting differently – ultimately the book asks, can you get people to start behaving in a different way?


The Power of Less, by Leo Babuta.

The Power of Less is a fantastic read if you are want to become more productive.

It focuses on how to do less but get more; doing a huge number of things doesn’t mean you’re getting lots done.

We all have a set of values, things and people we love, and goals we want to achieve.

…but the rush rush rush of our modern day, is overwhelming.

In trying to squeeze as much as possible out of our time;

Are we diluting our values?

Are we spending quality time with those we love or are we on our phones?

…and are we really achieving our goals, or just procrastinating?

This book really focuses in on what we want, how to de clutter, and get back to what’s important.


Think and Grow Rich, by Napoleon Hill.

I believe this was one of the first ‘self help books’, which gleans it’s ideology to the most affluent and successful people of the era it was written (1937), people like Henry Ford, JD Rockefeller

There’s also a revised edition that looks at the lives of very successful people such as Steven Spielberg, Mary Kay Ash and Bill Gates.

Through an inspiring mix of real life stories, lessons and tasks – this book is the equivalent of a fuel to a fire.

It focuses on the principles that Hill believes, through his many interviews with some of the worlds most successful individuals, are crucial for success.

Such as desire, faith, and knowing exactly what you want.

(I will add, this book isn’t completely about financial gain as the title suggests, but personal fulfilment too).

It’s very full on and intense compared to the others mentioned… you will need a cup of coffee.


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