Book Review #18 - How Will You Measure Your Life

Updated: Jan 5

The thing about living a fast-paced life as a professional is that you can see tangible results that validate you. Maybe a promotion, a new business, a recent success. All the markers that you are moving forward and you are doing something with your life. But is it the life you really want?




I’ve read this book twice now. I’ve read about four of Clayton Christensen’s book, and I am a fangirl. I like his style because it is simple, straightforward concepts, yet they stimulate deep thought, give perspective, and that can be a fertile ground to building better habits that go on to shape your life.


This book is apt for me, and both times I’ve read it, I’ve felt a sense of clarity condensed through the book from beginning to end. In other books, its usually micro-moments of clarity.


I have this hypothesis that there are two types of people. Some are hungry, and others aren’t. When I mean hungry, I don’t say this with regards to food. The hungry people are those who have a deep-seated need to live life; I mean truly live it. To experience and to pour their very essence, personality, skills into building a better world. Throughout their life, they yearn for something more, and they can’t place a finger on it. Still, they express this in different ways, often as over-achievers in their fields, or in a specific area of interest, which can be a good thing, and also a distraction, as the need is never really sated. If this sounds like you then you should read this book.


The thing about living a fast-paced life as a professional is that you can see tangible results that validate you. Maybe a promotion, a new business, a recent success. All the markers that you are moving forward and you are doing something with your life. 


A meaningful life is different; however, cliché, as it may sound, is not in our amassing of wealth or our ambitions. It’s something more textured, and very personal. 


“Fast-paced careers, family responsibilities, and tangible rewards of success tend to swallow up time and perspectives.”


- Clayton Christensen


It’s easy to believe that life is happening to you, but we have the power to define who we are and who we want to be. The path of least resistance is dangerous because it optimizes for you what is convenient, which in some cases can be what leads to an unfavorable outcome.


“The danger for high achieving people is that they’ll unconsciously allocate their resources to activities that yield the most immediate, tangible accomplishments. How you allocate your resources can make your life turn out exactly as you hope or very different from what you intend.”


The book also talks about ‘culture,’ my favorite topic. I think culture is a “virus” that exponentially multiplies. Create an awesome culture, and your reward exponentially replicates. Create a toxic culture, and it is the same. In the workplace, or at home, in your life, the question this book asks is:


“What culture have you created? What are you optimizing for? Are you sure that is what you want?”


I will be re-reading this book.


I recommend, and it is a great read to start the year. 


Love,

Maria


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