Why I Bought a Book Instead of a Beer

Actually, 2 beers.

That’s about how many beers I could get for my $13 dollar personal development book.

I’ve read all the self-help, personal development books you have. We know “investing in ourselves is the best investment.” We know spending money on junk and filler is bad.

But we still eat the Pringles.

We still balk at going to the gym.

We still binge through Netflix and Hulu.

We still obsess over sports teams, our selfies, pleasing other people, get fat and sleep in and I get it.

We know what the “better” choice is, but we still choose the opposite.

Except today! My wife and I have a budget we’re (actually) sticking to, and I have a limited amount of “blow” money — money I can spend on whatever I want. Since we moved to Korea, there’s virtually no avenues for me to continue my craft beer obsession, so I’ve been wringing my hands waiting for this big craft beer festival next month.

But yes — I spent some of my limited beer money on a damn book today.

Why Your Next Purchase Should Be a Book

Look, I’m still probably going to eat Ritz crackers tonight with dinner. Maybe even have some soda.

But I’m also going to eat a healthy(ish) dinner. And I might go for another jog, because I just started running again. My beer belly is slowly disappearing. And maybe I’ll buy another book next week with my beer money.

Buying a book is a small investment, but an investment nonetheless. It’s money that could go to other of your usual spending — clothes. Trinkets. Eating out.

If your next purchase is a book, you’ll create a small little spark. You’ll push that huge boulder. The spark will be small, and the boulder will budge a few inches. Because there’s no open flame, no momentum yet.

But there’s a little bit of it.

Don’t feel bad about not exercising/reading/journaling/creating/working more or harder. What I’ve discovered is that these areas are all individual rhythms, and it takes a while to get in tempo for one, let alone several. It start with a single little push, a small purchase of a good book.

So start with buying a book instead of a beer. Maybe next time, you’ll buy another book, and increase your the size of your brain instead of the size of your belly.

That’s what I’m hoping.


6 Proven Steps How to Get Your Dream Job Faster Than Anyone Else

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This short checklist covers how I got my dream job in less than 11 months.

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  1. Kevin Hoelscher says:

    David McCullough once told of Teddy Roosevelt during his time in the Dakota Territory and before his arrival on the world scene. Two thieves who had been on something of a crime spree in the territory had stolen Roosevelt’s rowboat, and he was determined to chase them down and arrest them. He chased the thieves for 40 miles of rough landscape, through deep snow and in constant danger of attack, and indeed brought them to justice. McCullough then tells the reader: “But what makes it especially memorable is that during that time, he managed to read all of Anna Karenina. I often think of that when I hear people say they haven’t time to read.”

    Right now I’m reading a book about Dodge City, Kansas, the wickedest town in the Wild West. Wyatt Earp and Bat Masterson were instrumental in enforcing the law amidst all the cowboys, saloons, brothels, prostitution, buffalo hunting, cattle driving, etc.

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