For 99 cents on Amazon, this quick read’s the right price.
It’s pithy and punchy. The cover art actually hints at the biggest takeaway from the book: the concept of motivation, momentum, and movement.
It’s a simple premise that completely resonates with me.
Essentially, when we do something — go workout, meet up with friends, complete a project at work — we’re creating some movement in our lives. The feedback that we get from that movement is (usually) positive — and so it motivates us to go out and pursue more of those activities. The cycle of movement and motivation generates momentum.
By contrast, in an inactive state, we’re not getting any positive feedback that would encourage us go out and get things done in the world. As a result, there’s nothing to motivate us to be active, which pushes the cycle towards something Tevelow calls “negative momentum.” This is a state of being demotivated and inactive.
It’s normal to feel this way time to time. What matters is how we get ourselves back on track towards the cycle of positive momentum.
In the way that the first few pedals on a bike ride require the most force, the first few actions you take when you’re feeling demotivated and inactive will be the hardest. But it comes with the territory. In the end, you have to get your game face on and do it.
Besides the momentum cycle that Tevelow discusses, there were some other points that I liked.
Tevelow alludes to The Personal MBA, by Josh Kaufman. The premise of the book is that instead of getting buried by six figure student loans in order to get credentialed with some fancy letters after your name, you could invest that time and money in experiences that would give you a similar background. As someone who’s vaguely flirted with the idea of business school, it was good to read about an alternative to the traditional B-School path.
I also enjoyed learning that Tevelow and I share a similar Amazon hack. We’ll read the free book samples — usually the first chapter. Often, the best information is revealed in the first chapter, with more details surfacing later in the book. If you do end up buying the book though, you shouldn’t feel obligated to finish it if you feel satisfied before reaching the end. A lot of the time we don’t need to read an entire book to get what we need out of it. It’s like going to a buffet. You can eat everything. But you don’t have to.
Last pearl — the value of working quickly. Not a new concept, but I enjoyed getting Tevelow’s take. He sites a few projects that had a very limited time frame to work with, and were very successful. For example, Million Dollar Baby – Best Picture of 2004 – was made in 37 days. When we have a limited time frame to work with, we’re hyper present and make every moment count. The result is frequently a cohesive product that reflects a sharp eye for detail.