I have written within this here blog before about my penchant for note take as I read. I don’t do it nearly as much when doing audiobooks. Some of that is because I mostly do fiction and biographies for audiobooks, hard cover for nonfiction or educational books. The majority of my audiobook consumption is done while doing by morning walks. A chapter a day does a pretty good job of occupying that 1.5-mile walk to start a day.
Well, I recently did a biography that had me stopping during my walks and typing out quick emails to myself, my version of mobile note taking. It was a biography that had me sending myself “life lessons and solid reminders”.
I will list some of the stuff I emailed myself below:
Never give up the battle, for it is not yet won.
Be pragmatic in your approach.
Do not get sucked into the allure of outrage.
Find opportunities to engage in critical thinking.
Words matter. Make it so they can’t slip a knife in between your argument.
Turn in your best work, every time.
No matter how far we come, there is always further to go.
Frame your arguments in a way the person can not only hear, but relate to.
Find someone who will pull their weight in your family life.
Find someone who will care for you at your weakest.
Find someone who will care for you, and push others to believe in you too.
Be gregarious, be lively, put yourself out there. Enjoy her, and make sure she enjoys you.
Have a good time of these. Find delight in the small successes. It is okay to ask for help.
Go above and beyond in helping others.
Find someone who will make you laugh, no matter how serious you are.
Find ways to connect with people, no matter the differences in opinion. Be there for those you care about.
Maintaining personal animosity and grudges ate things that diminish you. Ithey keep you from remaining focused on your own goals.
Sometimes the simplest things you can do mean the most to the ones you care about.
Know one does this alone. Be sure to thank those who have paved the way, frequently and loudly.
We often have something to aim at because someone else has already hit the target.
So often in life, things thought to be an impediment turn out to be fortunate.
In the slow progress of persuasion be a reserved radical.
When dissenting do so without anger insult or patronizing.
So, what was this book full of such wisdoms?
The RGB Way: The Secrets Of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Success
This book, by Rebecca Gibian, was released in 2019. I had downloaded it from Audible before her passing, but did not get to reading it until after she passed last month. This is one of the shorter books on RBG (160 pages, or 4 hours, 35 minute audio), but it was a decent starting point book, and it was a free selection a few months back.
There was not much original information in this one. It mostly refers to material found in other books about RBG, or quotes from articles and interviews. In the entire book, we never have reference to the author having even talked to the Supreme Court justice, only people around her and previously written works. Still, if you want to know more about RBG, her life and philosophy without a larger time investment, it was very much worth the read. Just go in knowing it not as in depth at RBG’s life likely was and you will be fine with it. This book is more about her philosophy than her life, and that is okay.
Of course, after I spent that time on my walks emailing myself repeatedly, the last chapter of the book was a nice little wrap-up of the whole thing. Some of these are repeats from above, but it is worth including once again.
Lessons To Take Away
1. FInd your passion and pursue it, and it is okay to have more than one.
2. Hard work pays off. Find when and where you work best, and get to it.
3. Turn in your best work, every time.
4. Have a plan, but be prepared to adjust it when obstacles arise.
5. Looking at what other people, organizations, countries have done can help you figure out that plan, and can provide guidelines for what has worked and what hasn’t.
6. If you decide to have a life-long partner, however you define partner, find one like Marty. Someone who thinks your career is just as important as theirs, someone who makes you laugh, someone who doesn’t see building a life together as a sacrifice.
7. Friendships are important, and you can maintain them despite political differences. Ways to maintain friendships: eat good food together, embrace your similarities and shared interest, say thank you, support each other through the ups and downs life presents, focus on what matters.
8. Always recognize those on whose shoulders you stand. Do this for people who paved the way and for people who are currently on the path with you.
9. In times of hardship, going back to work, or getting back on a schedule, can help you stay afloat. Continue the battle if you can. But if this doesn’t work for you, don’t do it. Put your health and well being first and find what is best for you.
10. It is okay to be angry, but find a way to utilize that anger to persuade others to create positive change. People might be more willing to listen if you are not yelling. Being angry may affect your ability to convince people that they should be on your team.
11. And when persuasion doesn’t work, dissent. Dissent loudly, dissent clearly, dissent with the goal of creating a response.
12. We can not just wait for our idols to save us. We need to roll up our sleeves and do the work to make active change in society so that the court and the law can follow.