Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Two Books I Like

I am not as much of a reader as I think I should be. Here are two books I would recommend that I have just finished or am in the middle of that I like very much. They are not "religious books" as such. But, I believe they have great applicability to College Ministry. All of us in College Ministry speak to large groups and/or lead group meetings. I am always about how can I be a better speaker, connect better to audiences and lead more effective group meetings. These two books speak to those abilities.

PRESENCE by Amy Cuddy

Cuddy is a Harvard professor who had a brain injury while in college that affected her abilities and self confidence that she had to learn all over. She is a Social Psychologist who is famous for her TED Talk. Hint: You can watch the TED Talk on YouTube and have the summary of the book or to decide, if you want to buy the book.
Cuddy points to her own research and the research of others that says contrary to our assumptions, our body movements affect our sense of inner presence and therefore our outward presence and presentations. She says, "We don't sing because we are happy; we are happy because we sing.". Simply put, she says we can do things physically ("power posing") that will affect our inner senses that will help us perform better. It is fascinating stuff.

TALK LIKE TED by Carmine Gallo

I got onto this book as it was listed as a book that many who bought Cuddy's book also bought. The subtitle is "The 9 Public Speaking Secrets of the World's Top Minds". Gallo has analyzed the most popular TED Talks (some viewed more than one million times) and uses them as the examples of each of these traits or "Secrets" of these powerful presentations. For example, one of the 9 Secrets is "Stories" and how they connect to people. But, he goes further and quotes the research done by those who have done brain scans that demonstrate how the brain reacts and connects to stories as they are being told. You will not be surprised by some of the "secrets" but you will understand them much better.

What books do you like that have helped you do what you do better and more effectively?


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