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Michael’s Badass 3 Book Theory

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Hi, it’s Michael again!

As you guys know, I like to read. I guess that’s an understatement, I love to read.

I read a lot and I try to read in all subjects. Currently I have been reading Charlie Munger’s ( Warren Buffet’s partner of over 40 years ) book, Poor Charlie’s Almanack ( which is basically a modernized version of Ben Franklin’s, Poor Richard’s Almanack ).

One of my favorite quotes ( & there’s a lot from Charlie ) is, “in my whole life, I have known no wise people ( over a broad subject matter area ) who didn’t read all the time – none, zero.”

I could not agree more with this and it’s the same basis for which I started reading so much early on. At some point in your life, looks will fade, you will get old, and you need something more to add to a conversation than what happened on the weekend.

My dad always had these wild stories and facts that he would throw into conversation out of nowhere. As a kid, I thought it was amazing how much he knew. He would take an old saying like, “he’s not worth his salt” & when we would all look at him with a confused expression, he’d go on to explain, “they used to pay people wages in salt, that’s true”. And it is true, salt used to be worth more than gold in some parts of the world ( he later sent me an amazing book called, Salt: A World History ).

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Lauryn frequently catches me hopping from book to book. Often I won’t have even finished a book, but I switch in another one. I typically do this with 3-4 books at a time. I have a theory on this and it has worked for me for years ( it may not work for you, but it doesn’t hurt to try ).

My theory is that reading different types of books actually increases my retention and creativity.

When you read a book from one author and then switch to another author, you hear different points of view and speaking in your head. I believe this helps the flow of creativity and it also helps me get through dry books.

It’s quite difficult to sit down and read a really dry book ( think of your textbooks in school ). If you pair the dry reading with a fascinating fiction or biography, it can be much easier ( at least for me ) to slam through the book and actually retain the information.

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What do you guys think of this theory?

If you’re up for the challenge I recommend starting with 3 books. Try a fiction, a biography, & a non-fiction preferably related to a subject area you find stimulating. Recently for me it was, Evolutionary Psychology: The New Science of the Mind, Fifth Edition. I was able to get through this book in about 4 days which is quicker than I would have read it if it was the only book on my table, and I retained a lot ( women – I now understand 5% of the reason you do things, before it was 0% ).

So! Read a chapter or two at a time and then switch books. See what works. If you can sit in a quiet part of your home and throw on some noise canceling headphones that also helps a lot.

Do you guys think this 3 book theory would work in the dating world? Grab an interesting partner or two to get through the boring bland one? Hahaha, just joking… I think this has been tried before with mixed reviews? Cheers! – michael

“Let us read, and let us dance; these two amusements will never do any harm to the world.” -Voltaire

{ PC } | lauryn’s dress found here.

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  1. Omg , I always read two books at a time. This year I will start 3 books. So good to know I’m not the only one with head drowned in a book andhoarding books all the time. Thanks for the post.

  2. As one who can never stay focused long enough to actually finish a book, maybe this could be the approach to get me through! 🙂 I love acquiring new knowledge, love watching documentaries on basically any topic!

    What have been some of your favourite non-fictional books?

    1. Hi Rse,

      This may help you, i did a post a couple weeks ago on some of my recent favorites. check it out if you have time

  3. Hi you guys, Michael thanks for sharing your reading habits. I read several books at a time as well, otherwise I can not focus enough. My problem is that sometimes due to lots of work, family and other responsibilities I find myself struggeling with finisihng the books I start and just end up starting new ones. Of course that’s a problem I have to fix. So I am curious: how many hours a day do you read?

    1. Hi Flora,

      I try to read for at least 4 hours a day. This may sound extreme but I break it up. I wake up early and read the paper or a book for about 1.5-2 hours. Whenever I have some spare time in the day I read for couple of minutes here and there. Then at night before bed I try and read for another 1.5-2 hours. It’s hard to be consistent but I try to make it a habit. Whenever I find myself wasting time with television or social media distractions I try to remember to pick up a book. Hope this helps!

  4. Any advice on not falling asleep while reading? Also is this your office? It’s beautiful!
    Love That Lauryn is giving you a chance to share on here. I’ll stay tuned!

    1. Yes, sit up in a chair or couch. Don’t lay back and when you are reading, really try and focus. I tell myself that nothing else exists in the world but the page I am reading. This is my home office/man cave! It is supposed to by my fortress of solitude but Lauryn and the Chihuahuas invade it every day.

  5. My mom does the same thing and swears she can get through the books faster because of it. Now that I’m in business school, I know what you mean, you have to have more to contribute to the conversation than last weekend’s party…people want to know how you feel about the currency fluctuation in China, so this is the perfect post for me. My New Year’s resolution was to read way more. Thanks for the tip!

    1. Hi MacKenzie, we’re glad you like the post! What books are you reading right now? Michael and I are always looking for recommendations! Send us your absolute favorites! Happy New Year, xx

  6. Hmm, I don’t think I’ve ever tried reading more than 2 books at once – unless it was for school. I’ll give it a shot though!

    Also, I love Michael’s guest blog posts. Keep em coming! Maybe I can convince my boyfriend to do that for my blog!


  7. One of my resolutions is definitely to read more! My dad has always been so well read and the guy I go to for any random questions I have – he always has the best, more educated answers! I love this series you do and look forward to all your (and lauryn’s) recommendations. Just ordered Salt!



  8. Thank you so much for this!! I am definitely going to have to try this out, especially with all the reading I have to do for my degree which can be a bit bland to say the least! Thanks again!

  9. Michael – it is VoltairE?Otherwise I find your theory really cool.Always have been a reader and cannot agree more that it makes you creative and gives you loads of topics to talk about.Readers rock!

  10. Hiiii Michael! LOL are you ready for all us chicks in the blogging world to blow your shit up with questions?! HAHA

    First, thanks for bringing reading to light here, I think it’s super important, and to the point of your theory. where you believe it helps your creative brain, I think it also helps me to be more interesting in conversations. For any book that I’m reading, there’s often so many ‘nuggets’ that you can pull out to discuss with people and share interesting stories without even having lived them.

    I am so often reading self help books, or books on leadership, business, so sometimes they get dry. So having a mix up with another book available is such a good idea. I love it.

    I will check out your book list too. My boyfriend would be really interested in whatever you’re reading, I’m sure.

    Love the post, glad you’re posting here too!

    Happy New Year,

    1. Hiiii Krista,

      I am definitely not sure if I am ready. haha. I am glad you like the post, I read a lot of biz, self help, and leadership books but I read even more fiction and literature books. People hear the word fiction and they think there are no facts in the book. I have learned a lot through reading fiction books throughout the years. My favorites are historical fictions, based in factual settings throughout history.

  11. When it comes to fiction, I can’t put a book down. I really live through the story. I have a harder time with nonfiction and motivational books. I totally love this theory for getting through those. Sometimes I feel like our brains need time to really absorb the info we have just read.

  12. Hi Michael,

    Want to start off by saying how much I enjoy Lauryn’s snapchats and your “Panicky Susan” appearances. I truly admire how much you love to read. I think it’s a lost hobby that’s under-appreciated. I myself love to read. I go through books easily and as cliche as it sounds, knowledge is power and you can usually find that in books. I would love if you would make a Goodreads account where you show books you’ve read or that you would like to read. Also, have you thought about making a book club? I would definitely join in.

    A recommendation of what I’m reading right now is Way of the Peaceful Warrior by Dan Millman.

    Anwho, thanks for your insight.

    1. Hi Kimberly,

      I am glad you enjoy my appearances, sometimes I wonder who is actually seeing all these snaps of me… apparently there are a few of you.

      Thank you for the compliment, there is nothing more powerful than information. I have thought about a Goodreads account, maybe I will make one. In the meantime Lauryn is going to let me post some monthly book recs on TSC.

      Thank you for the recommendations, I will check it out!

  13. I agree with your theory. I kinda got stuck on ‘We need to talk about Kevin”, so I moved on to another book and came back to the first book a few weeks later. Somehow it was much easier continuing from then on and I was really glad that I did.

    1. Arinah, I am glad this worked for you. Not all books are easy to get through but the information is still valuable. I don’t like to stop reading books in the middle. It really irritates me so I had to figure out a way to get through them.

  14. I really enjoyed this post Michael and Lauryn. Michael, you seem like a really good solid guy and I’m glad Lauryn has a good man like you in her life. I would love to see your fiction selections and your historical biographies. Have you ever read a biography of Churchill? He is on my list of bios to read. I love to read but work has been crazy lately. I need to find some other ways to relax at night that do not only involve alcohol, food, or exercise, LOL 🙂 Thanks for sharing with us! 🙂

  15. You and Lauryn have to be my favourite couple ever. Love your book theory and am definitely going to try it out. I’m still in school and recently did a big switch in majors from Psychology to Marketing. Anything to help kickstart reading retention and creativity is perfect for me right now! Hope to hear more from you on the blog Susan!

  16. Jesse,

    Thank you for the compliment, I am amazing (haha jk). I will post some of my fiction and historical biographies soon. Read the “Last Lion” series on Churchill by William Manchester. I think you will enjoy those. Cheers!

  17. Hi Michael! I’m really enjoying your guests posts! Especially love this one because reading is my #1 hobby. If you’re looking for a quick fiction novel that you’ll probably fly through within a day or so, I’m currently reading “The Kind Worth Killing” by Peter Swanson and I can’t put it down. After this post, I might choose a historical fiction novel because you’ve got me intrigued! Thanks 🙂

  18. Hey PS, great post!

    I usually have a book that I’m reading and a book that I’m listening to on Audible. I find that listening to a book and reading a book stimulate the mind in very different ways- and I love both.

    Do you have a “Goodreads” account? If not, it’s a great way to record the books you’ve read with notes and reviews for yourself and others. Goodreads also makes pretty good recommendations based on the books you’ve read and enjoyed.

    See ya on Snapchat 🙂

  19. You have inspired me to read more?This theory seems legit & reading 3 books at once makes me feel like an overachiever… I like it! Good guest post, you guys are awesome.

  20. As someone who inadvertently ends up doing this anyway, I felt relieved to read that I’m not the only one! I usually end up reading about three-four books at a time because I use a variety of different reading platforms to engage. For example, I have one hard-cover book, one Kindle, and be listening to one audiobook. I completely agree – this trick works magic, especially when you encounter a particularly dry part in one book, which you can remedy by just flicking over to another for the time being. Thanks for the post!

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