Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Three cheers for audio books

It's Three for Thursday – and this week I am going to make a case for audio books and why you should incorporate them into your commute. 

I read in a book once (I honestly can’t remember the title) that if you listen to non-fiction audio books on a general subject area on your drive to and from work or school every day for a year, you would have accumulated the equivalent knowledge as that of a graduate degree.

I’m not suggesting that you call your registrar’s office and tell them that you got a new boom box, so they can go ahead and tear up your academic records and refund your tuition payments.

What I am suggesting is that your education shouldn't be confined to the classroom. 

#1: Education never stops – especially after college.

The truly successful people in this world are constantly learning - and developing the habit of a perpetual learner is a key to success. 

And when you're busy and may not always have time to sit down to read, turning your drive time into learning time will compound and help you improve immensely. 

#2: Fiction can be a great start for you when making the leap into the world of audio books – it expands your vocabulary, imagination, and creative process skills – those are all things that the 21st century workplace and job market appreciate. 

But definitely find ways to integrate nonfiction that interests you.

Go for broad subjects, anything that piques your interest or anything you want to learn about. Really - anything!

I love learning about people - how they operate, what they feel, how they are affected, and how they become successful; so in addition to self-help and success books (e.g. The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy), I love books on the millennial generation, how people build relationships, how the brain works socially, how we are motivated, and one of my favorites in my CD player right now (that I got for free from the library) - The Social Animal by David Brooks.

#3: The knowledge you gain from books is invaluable – it adds to everything you do whether you realize it or not. For example, it will lead to better papers, more interesting conversational topics, expand your vocabulary, and help you better connect to and understand the world around you. And yet the reality is that as a college student with a lot of required reading, you won’t always have the time to fit in recreational reading.

So go audio. 
You’d be surprised how many audio books you can download to your iPod or Smart Phone from your college or personal library – they also offer cds if you know what those are ;)

I recommend and, of course, the audio books available on iTunes. 

Reading will always be important to success –  regardless of technological advancement. Whether you're reading on a Kindle or listening on an iPod... 

The information acquired is priceless.

So while I still rock out to a song or two before something exciting (and Pandora is on in my office for most of the day), I like to dedicate my drive time to learning. I hope you discover the kinds of audio books that bring you as much joy and engagement as mine have brought to me.

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