A reading list for fresh ideas and optimism

Find a way through the chaos...

Cheakamus RiverI did a little shopping during a bitter cold snap (another case of extreme weather where I live). I decided to fill my mind with positivity, optimism and fresh thinking for the year ahead. Immersing myself in a good book (the paper kind, I’m old-school), is one way keep my head up from the downward spiral that follows from mindless doomscrolling.

In case you’re looking for inspirational reads this year, here are my non-fiction picks:

Green Swans: The Coming Boom in Regenerative Capitalism by John Elkington.

If you’re looking for a manifesto for system change designed to serve people, planet, and prosperity – then add this to your list. The author is known for introducing the concepts of triple bottom line, people, planet & profit for business, and is an authority on corporate responsibility and sustainable development.

Uncharted: How to Navigate the Future by Margaret Hefferman

This author’s mantra is: “Let’s not play the game, …let’s change it”. Sign me up! I am thinking this one will be integral for my work in facilitation and engagement. The book builds the case for “Radical exercises in forging new futures with wildly diverse participants allow everyone to create outcomes together that none could do alone”.

The Mother of Invention: How Good Ideas Get Ignored in an Economy Built for Men by Katrine Marcal

I’m new to this author but I’ll also add her bestselling book “Who Cooked Adam Smith’s Dinner?” to my list once I finish The Mother of Invention. I came across this book after listening to a SHEEO.World podcast. They interview people like Katrine who are redesigning, reimagining and rethinking the systems we live in to solve the biggest challenges of our times.

Think Again: The Power of Knowing What You Don’t Know by Adam Grant

I think we’re living with so much divisiveness due to our assumptions and biases. We’re largely reluctant to listen to other perspectives since it may be a threat to our ego. I’m interested in this read to cultivate my ability to “rethink and unlearn”. These ideas will be valuable for facilitating deeper conversations and leading effective engagement sessions.

The Generosity Network: New Transformational Tools for Successful Fundraising by Jennifer Mccrea.

I am stepping into fundraising roles more and more in my work and with the nonprofits that I support as a volunteer board member. I’m interested in flipping the traditional models to support causes through asking for money, and instead, looking at models of partnership: to share resources, ideas and networks to achieve goals.

What’s on your reading list these days? Share what has helped you cultivate fresh ideas and stay optimistic through the chaos!