Back in the Saddle Again

/Back in the Saddle Again

2016 was a very difficult personal year with the deaths of my mom and mother-in-law (whom I’ve known and loved since I was 15), followed by the funerals of four other very close relatives. When a colleague asked me at the beginning of this year what I had been reading lately, I was stunned to realize that I had read very little. It was definitely a year of surviving emotional trauma, with little to no room for additional mental challenges.

This year, rocked by the revelation that I had not read much, if anything, last year, I was determined to get back on the horse again and pick up the hobby (habit?) of reading once more. So, to honor my friend, myself, and my loved ones who have passed, I dedicate this the year of reading (again). I’ve already posted a reading list for others this year, but for accountability purposes – here’s a snapshot of what I’ve read this year. Yes, some are just for fun, some are for personal development, and some are for skills development. Truth be told, the first one I picked up was just for fun: Rogue Lawyer. I’ve always been a John Grisham fan.

As I read for skills and personal development, I consider the application of what I’m reading to my own life and business. My application strategy is this: as I discover key points, interesting ideas, and creative new twists, I capture those in the blank pages at the back end of the book, like this:

I scribble as fast as I can the key message/application that I gain from that reading section. I don’t worry that it’s illegible to anyone else. I jot down the page number, if needed for further reference. I used to dog-ear pages and highlight sections in yellow. I find that practice to be of little value now. My notes at the back are far more helpful than scanning the book and wondering where my stream of consciousness flow was going!

I’ve started my new list for the second quarter of 2017, and it looks like this so far:

Yes, some are old, some are new (or revised editions!), and some (as last quarter’s) are written by dear colleagues. I’m a firm believer that reading expands personal perspectives, and expanded perspectives enhance personal ability to learn more, embrace change, and thrive. Cheers to a thriving 2017 and beyond!

I hope this article has offered an application: what hobby is calling you to pick up again? Get back on that horse and ride, friend!

Exceeding client expectations for over 18 years in her own business, Jill’s extensive background and experience spans both public and private sectors, from small start-up firms to Fortune 500 companies, including those in manufacturing, energy, oil and gas, healthcare, retail, and business services. Clients span the globe and include industry giants for whom leadership training is provided at corporate headquarters and field locations throughout the USA and across the world.Coupled with an entrepreneurial spirit, Jill provides the leadership acumen needed for success in today’s business world. She is an experienced leader best equipped to guide your organization’s leadership development, implementation, and sustainability plans. Client success stories include creating and launching corporate universities, developing customized leadership curriculum, and providing group and individual coaching for leaders within global organizations as well as small, family businesses.

Jill is a an honors graduate from the University of Texas, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and a Masters of Human Resource Management from the University of Houston. She is a Past President of two Houston professional associations (Institute of Management Consultants and Association for Talent Development). Remaining an active member and volunteer in these and other professional, community, and service organizations, Jill demonstrates a powerful example of her firm belief in leadership’s responsibility to give back. She devotes her leisure time to family and friends, enjoys opportunities for travel, and nurtures her flower gardens whenever she’s home! Contact Jill@JillHickman.com for best practices in leadership coaching, training sustainability, and driving organizational change.