If you’re looking for a good book to read on vacation this summer, you’re in luck. This summer’s best wealth and wisdom reads are hopeful, humorous, and actionable, and they’re all a good length for reading on the plane! Here are five books we’re loving this summer:

1. Crushing It: How Great Entrepreneurs Build Their Business and Influence-and How You Can, Too

Gary Vaynerchuk gives us a good look at how modern entrepreneurs are rocking their businesses and shows us how we can implement their strategies into our own businesses right now. If you own your own business, or are thinking about starting your own business, Crushing It is a must-read.

I enjoy Vaynerchuk’s writing style. It’s approachable and his advice is very practical. I like that the strategies in the book aren’t the usual vague stuff we see in most career and business guides—this is a “so and so did it this way, and here’s how you can do it too” approach. A lot of his advice is on how to rock social media (Twitter and Facebook, but also newer platforms like Spotify, Soundcloud, and iHeartRadio), which is an ever-changing target if there ever was one.

2. You are a Badass at Making Money

If you aren’t rolling in fat stacks of cash every night, it’s probably because you have some deep-seeded belief about money that’s holding you back on your road to wealth. In You are a Badass at Making Money, Jen Sincero gives you strategies to break your money-repelling cycle so you can begin building wealth.

In some places, Sincero’s book is a little like a potty-mouth version of The Secret, but her advice is very good. She tells it like it is, and weaves short exercises for breaking through your money roadblocks at the end of every chapter. I’m not rolling in the dough yet, but maybe if I repeat “I love money and money loves me” enough times, it might just happen. You are a Badass at Making Money is a good before bed read to help you visualize the life you want at the end of each day.

3. What Color is Your Parachute? 2018

If you’re struggling with your career in any way, it’s time to pull out the job hunter’s bible, What Color is Your Parachute?

Even if you’ve read it before, the book is republished every year with the latest in job hunting and career soul-searching advice. It’s a fantastic read every year. Sadly, Richard Bolles died last year, but his son continues the tradition of updating the book for 2018.

Seriously, if you’re stuck in your career path, and you only have time to read one book, this is the book you must read.

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4. Factfulness: Ten Reasons We’re Wrong about the World and Why Things are Better than You Think

If you haven’t heard, Bill Gates is giving all 2018 college graduates a copy of the book, Factfulness. There’s a good reason why. We are bombarded by media messages that life sucks and our planet is on fire. Hans Rosling proves that this simply isn’t true. The world is in a better place than it’s ever been.

Bill Gates describes the book in this short video:

This isn’t a political rant about “fake news” or that sort of thing. This is a logical look at what’s really going on in the world, and how we can change our perspective to continue making the world a richer, better place. This is a book about using our brains instead of our reactionary emotions. Hooray!

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5. Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life…And Maybe the World

Despite the title, Make Your Bed is about the author’s experience as a Navy Seal and how it taught him to think about leadership, teamwork, and how making small efforts can lead to meaningful change. It’s about perseverance in the face of adversity.

William H. McRaven gives us 10 principles to follow to change our lives, and then the world. It all starts with making your bed (which you should do anyway. It only takes a minute!).

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5 Books to Make You Wealthier and Wiser this Summer - #goodbooks #bookreview #career #careeradvice #summer

Most everyone who reads this blog has worked a purposeless job, or a job we found boring, bland, or soul-sucking. We tell ourselves that these jobs are just part of life, and we carry on, doing the same meaningless work day after day. We tell ourselves that our work has purpose to someone somewhere, but what if it doesn’t?

In his new book, BS Jobs: A Theory, David Graeber explores the idea that purposeless jobs are a “systemic inefficiency” that actually make things worse for corporations (and everyone else)…yet they keep doing it for reasons you don’t expect.

Capitalism According to Graeber

Graeber describes how in a world that is built around capitalism, a strange phenomenon is occurring that is counter to the very nature of free-market thinking. In its simplest form, capitalism is based on the idea that private enterprise will continuously improve to provide better products and services, at a better price or quality than before.

To understand Graeber’s idea, think of Ford’s Model T, the first mass-produced car on an assembly line. When Ford invented the assembly line for car manufacturing, he was able to make and sell more cars. It was capitalism at its best.

If you’ve seen the movie The Founder (2016), you might remember the scene where the McDonald brothers choreographed their employee’s movements, and placed their kitchen equipment in a specific order to increase the amount of food they could produce. Increasing efficiency made McDonald’s billions of dollars. It illustrates that capitalism is about making commodities more efficiently, especially when it comes to the costliest business resource: humans.

Humans Create Inefficiency

Graeber describes how despite the principles of capitalism, there is systemic inefficiency in the system, mainly by people having what he calls “BS jobs.” These are jobs that have no true added value, tasks that are created purely due to bad design, and employment purely for the sake of empire building.

Graeber claims that up to 50% of the workforce is engaged in a BS job, and more importantly, that it is political—or rather, maintaining it is political. Graeber argues that there was no set plan by the ruling class to promote the “BS-ization” of the free-market model, but its existence keeps the ruling class in power. It’s a form of people management through labor.

The Pitfalls (or Opportunities) of Automation

Graeber’s BS Jobs is a good read. Although it sounds like a conspiracy theory, the idea of BS jobs is relevant in a time where we are seeing such strong progress in automation. As tech news is dominated by self-driving cars, artificial intelligence, and machine learning, how can we not wonder how automation impacts our role in the workforce?

Think about it—how many of your job tasks could be eliminated if management found a structural solution? How many meaningless forms do you fill out? How many tedious spreadsheets do you monitor?

And the bigger question: How many jobs would be eliminated if we all didn’t waste time on meaningless tasks? Graeber’s theory is not only based on the feeling that a job is redundant or could be done a 100% quicker and more accurate by proper software or code, but it’s also the idea that the job adds zero value to society.

How do You Avoid a BS Job?

The best way to avoid a BS job is to employ yourself. You could start a side hustle or your own business enterprise. Finding the money to start your own business is easy these days with the many business start-up loans with no credit check available.

Graeber describes in his book that with meaningless jobs, the ability to influence the world is taken away from us, with profound dramatic emotional results on the human psyche. If he’s right, going out there on your own, regardless what business you start, at least will yield greater promise of happiness ROI.

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 We review David Graeber's book, BS Jobs: A Theory