Seek what they Sought


Seek not to follow in the footsteps of wise men; seek what they sought.” ~Basho

By: Martin Grunburg

After an incredible (albeit too-short) trip to Greece last week I had a fantastic opportunity to literally follow in the footsteps of some of the wisest of men; Socrates, Plato and Aristotle to name a few. If you’ve read The Habit Factor then you recognize the significance of that for me. In fact, any time you launch the app (on iPhone) the splash-screen is Raphael’s classic “School of Athens” Plato and Aristotle (not just “two men in robes” as some emails to our support email address identify them!).

Anyhow, as it relates to the above quote, it was fun for me to contemplate so many of the ideas and truths which they sought, surrounding topics like; truth, justice, virtue and character just to name a few. And somehow, this led me to realize that if you think you’re confused as you scan the personal development landscape of today’s self-help books, products and services, rest assured, you’re not alone.

With hundreds of thousands of self-help books, we’ve reached a bit of a tipping-point where many of these books and authors are regurgitating ideas often repeated but unfortunately with limited depth and understanding.

In fact, it seems the Kindle and iBook have spawned (for better or worse) a host of digital ebooks flooding the marketplace. Opportunistically, in an attempt to crank out as many cheap ebooks as possible under $3,99 — many of these authors are choosing quantity over quality— and in many cases diluting and confusing a once very legitimate and beneficial personal development marketplace.

Good for them (maybe) — but probably bad for you.

The good news is, it’s typically very easy to recognize such books and their authors. You’ll note that their work is almost never over 120 pages and many times the author has released a handful of similar titles within the last year. Again, all for approximately $2.99.

I encourage and at the same time challenge YOU, (the reader) if you’re truly interested in personal development (and, why wouldn’t you be?), to first, look for and seek originality and authenticity! Perhaps the easiest way to do this is go back in time— that is, seek some of the original classics.

Below I’ve listed a just a few truly old-school classic personal development / self-help books as I’m constantly amazed at how many people still haven’t read these!

What makes them great?
Original ideas backed by timeless questions and principles supported by a driving passion to teach and share the material!

So, here you go: (I will at some point, share a much more complete list of the essential personal development / self-help library.

Your Starter Set! – BTW: Feel free to go to the page and comment/share any books essential you think I should’ve mentioned (and like it too!) ; )

James Allen – As a Man Thinketh
Napoleon Hill  – Think and Grow Rich
Orison Svett Marden’s The Miracle of Right Thought
Earl Nightengal’s The Strangest Secret (this is a GREAT audio!)
Dale Carnegie Win Friends and Influence People

Marcus Aurelius  Meditations
Epictetus  Art of Living: The Classical Manual on Virtue, Happiness, and Effectiveness

RE: $$ Finances (must read)  The Richest Man in Babylon

Until next time,


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