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Coach John Wooden’s 7-Point Creed: #4: Drink deeply from good books, especially the Bible

As a young child, I was not a reader of books. I wanted to play outside – ride my bike, climb trees, play sports, sneak off in the middle of the night with my best neighborhood friend and meet up at the tennis courts. The nature lover in me has continued.

When I got older, both my granddad and my mom influenced me on the importance of being informed and increasing my vocabulary. And one of the ways of being informed was reading. Reader’s Digest was a staple in our household and Word Power was a must! In addition to that, I was encouraged to read newspapers, journals, history books, whatever written material I could get my hands on. Reading soon became my passion. I wanted to learn and grow. I wanted to understand the world, the different cultures, the history behind what I learned. I wanted to absolutely drink that knowledge in and be informed.

I also became a scholar of the Bible, having read its entirety in different versions four times. I also studied other spiritual philosophies. Being deeply committed to learning principles to better myself as an individual, I studied Jewish, Islamic, Hindu, and Buddhist philosophies. The more I read, the more I realized what I didn’t know, which just encouraged me to read even more!

As an entrepreneur and coach, professional development reading has become my passion. There are so many ways to learn from the rich experiences from other professionals.

Below are four points to apply from reading:
1. Broaden your mind. If you are prone to sticking with one type of material, consider broadening your reading material. How can you expand your learning by reading something you have not been exposed to – whether it is history, religion, a different culture, a different genre entirely?

2. Tap into your creativity. When you read and are broadening your mind, you have this amazing opportunity to tap into your creativity. Perhaps you get a new thought or an idea from reading. When you do so, write it down and then apply an action step to make that new thought or idea come into reality!

3. Learn from others in your professional industry. See what they have written. What golden nuggets can you pull out? There is a wealth of knowledge out there – and people are gracious enough to share their knowledge so that you can learn and grow. Take advantage of that opportunity.

4. Listen. As you broaden your mind and learn from others, you also learn to listen. Use your knowledge so that you are able to relate to others and listen effectively. When you listen, you will build rapport by being fully present to who they are. In doing so, you can develop rich relationships with others.


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