My Favorite Books and Documentaries of 2021
Updated: Jun 11
I don't know if I've ever felt such a sense of learning-with-purpose as I did in 2021.
Perhaps, like me, as world events unfolded last year, maybe you also felt either or both of these emotions:
A gnawing sense of "what other important realities am I clueless about"?
As the ramifications of what has been set in motion the last two years continues to unfold...what do I need to learn (and do) to be prepared so I can provide for and protect my family and friends?
As I look back on what I learned last year, I'd say the theme that stands out to me is the search for first principles--those fundamental aspects of how the world actually works, which if understood, quickly helps sort important/relevant information from distractions.
Knowing we all have a limited amount of time to dedicate to learning, here are some books and documentaries I found that gave me a sense of being much more aware than I was when 2021 started.
Without further ado...
MY FAVORITE BOOKS OF 2021
BOOKS ABOUT MONEY, WEALTH, AND HOW WE THRIVE IN THE DAYS AHEAD
A History of Central Banking and The Enslavement of Mankind - Stephen Mitford Goodson
Wow. Whoa. Holy Moly. More than any other book last year, this one repeatedly blew my mind. By looking at history through the lens of the monetary system (specifically the central-banking model), I had a big reframe of many parts of history I thought I understood. This may be the most illuminating and paradigm-shifting book you could read all year. And... Amazon won't sell you this book, which might tell you something about its importance.
Thank God for Bitcoin: The Creation, Corruption, & Redemption of Money - Various Authors
More than a book about Bitcoin, this book explained the history of the invention called money, and along with the book mentioned above and below, helped me understand the morality question as it relates to our current monetary system. The authors didn't even cover Bitcoin until near the end of the book. I eventually realized that was because in order to understand why Bitcoin was invented, you first have to know what problem it is aimed at solving. It's a great, accessible read, and it also contains a Christian perspective on money and Bitcoin.
The Bitcoin Standard: The Decentralized Alternative to Central Banking - Saifedean Ammous
Similar to the book above, this awesome book holds off on talking about Bitcoin until the end, after laying out a deeper history of money, how the 20th-century economic policies have led to where we are, and it thoroughly explains how a just monetary system underpins a flourishing society. The author is also a fabulous writer who weaves complex topics with humor and super-helpful metaphors. It's not a book to read quickly, it's one to digest slowly because the principles are so profound.
Thou Shall Prosper: Ten Commandments for Making Money - Rabbi Daniel Lapin
This book examines some of the philosophical underpinnings of the Jewish faith and helps answer why Jews tend to be disproportionately prosperous. Overall, I found this book to be very insightful book with great reasoning from first principles. I think it misses a bit of the wisdom the other three books above have captured in terms of what we are witnessing with central banking and global corruption, but for people who don't wish to control money so they can rule the world, this book will put you on solid footing.
BOOKS ABOUT WHAT REALLY CAUSES DISEASE
The Invisible Rainbow: A History of Electricity and Life - Arthur Firstenberg
This book and the one below are up there in the mind-blowing category with Goodson's book mentioned above. This definitive work on the history of electricity/technology, and how they correspond diseases and outbreaks, will no-doubt reshape the way we think about contagion, EMFs, and every single degenerative disease we are experiencing today. I had been dismissive to apathetic about electromagnetic fields as they relate to health--not anymore!
The Contagion Myth: Why Viruses (Including "Coronaviruses) Are Not the Cause of Disease - Thomas S. Cowan M.D. and Sally Fallon Morell
This book puts together a very compelling case that viruses, the germ theory, and thus our countermeasures to combat these "invaders" have got us so fixated on one way of viewing the world, that we've lost our ability to look for any other way to explain both historical "outbreaks,"catching a "cold" or even covid. I think the conclusions in this book are solid, but I also think they are a few decades ahead of their time before the wisdom of these pages becomes self-evident. Highly recommended read.
BOOKS ABOUT MENTAL AND EMOTIONAL HEALTH
The Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America - Robert Whitaker
Similar to The Invisible Rainbow in terms of scope and comprehensiveness of research, this book lays out the entire history of psychiatry...and it's not a pretty history. From how psychiatry started, to the shady history of creating meds for made-up diseases, to comparing the breadth of all the outcomes of people taking meds for the head, this book shows how corrupt (and harmful) the whole discipline of psychiatry has become. If covid put any cracks in your confidence in pharma, this book will dramatically expand them.
It Didn't Start With You: How Inherited Family Trauma Shapes Who We Are and How to End the Cycle - Mark Wolynn
Talk about a book that took my empathy and humility to another level as a coach, this one did it. By exploring the biology of generational trauma, this book brought to light as aspect of trauma I had not understood, but it also provided so many great, practical nuggets reframing and coming to a place of healing with many of the painful, emotional blows life hands us along the way. If you've felt stuck in your emotional healing, this may get you unstuck.
The Art of Possibility: Transforming Professional and Personal Life - Rosamund Stone Zander and Benjamin Zander
This book was a pure joy to read. The husband and wife authors are the kinds of people we all wish we had as grandparents. Their decades of hard-won wisdom, packaged with entertaining stories, and life-giving principles not only have the potential to help the reader move past trauma or discontentment but also help the reader frame the future as a series of endless opportunities while becoming a non-anxious presence filled with joy and child-like fascination. Great read!
Psycho-Cybernetics: Tap Into the Power of Your Subconscious Mind - Maxwell Maltz
Funny name. Great content. Written by a plastic surgeon who was fascinated at the connection (or lack of connection) between how changes in our physical appearance helped some people step into a healthy self-image, and how it made absolutely no difference, this book is look at the power of the narratives we tell ourselves. It will help the reader see that if you can change your thinking, your can change your life.
BOOKS ABOUT PRODUCTIVITY...AND PEACE OF MIND
Smarter Faster Better: The Science of Being Productive in Life and Business - Charles Duhigg
If you're looking for a book to help you more effectively lead your business, your family, or yourself, this book is a great look at the psychology of some basic human drivers. Through the use of a lot of insightful case studies, Duhigg discusses things like our need to be in control and how that impacts our motivation, how group dynamics can bring out the best and worst in us, and how sometimes we need to unlearn old ideas so we can learn new ones.
Effortless: Make it Easier to do What Matters Most - Greg McKeown
If you've wrestled with "how to get it all done," this may be a book you want to read. We all eventually come to our crisis of limitations, and the question is what to do when we get there. This book is a great answer to that question. It helps you step back and invert your thinking about why things feel so hard in the first place, and what would it look like if they were easy. If you liked his book Essentialism, you'll like this book too.
A BOOK ON PARENTING
The Dad Advice Project: Words of Wisdom From Guys Who Love Being Dads - Craig Kessler
This was my fun read for the year and it had a lot of good nuggets for my most important job--that of a family man. Kessler is blessed to have a lot of introspective, successful friends who also love their kids ferociously and they all gave him their best tips as he entered fatherhood. Give it a read if you're looking for some short lessons from the parenting trenches.
FAVORITE DOCUMENTARIES I WATCHED IN 2021
Along with a tremendous amount of covid-related videos, too numerous to mention, here are a select few videos I think are really worth your time.
If I could only get you to watch one documentary to help you understand what we're actually living through with covid, this would be the film. It's a very eye-opening look at the easily-verifiable puppeteering going on that is literally trying to consolidate power and take over the entire world. If you have any friends who still believe in the mainstream covid narrative, see if you can get them to watch this film.
If you or a friend needs to "see the science" this documentary looks at the published Pfizer documents to explain how deadly and harmful Pfizer knows their "vaccines" to be. I've not seen a shorter, more compelling presentation that definitely argues for these injections to immediately be pulled from the market.
If you had told me two years ago that our governments not only have the technology to control the weather but have been actively using it, I would have said you were crazy. Then came covid, and with it, my openness to questioning just above everything. As it turns weather manipulation is alive and well, and is having devastating impacts on our health and the health of our planet. Next time you hear "climate change" hear "political football with a control agenda" and if this is a battle you can fight, get in there and make a difference.
This is a fascinating, different take on both the events that lead to the founding of the United States, and a look at how those with an insatiable drive for power pivoted around a system of government that put power in the hands of "We the People" instead of "We the Rulers." At the same time our forefathers established the USA, we also established the corporation as a faceless entity that can collect wealth and power. History always has lessons if we're willing to look for them.
WHAT NINA AND I ARE STUDYING FOR 2022
With our upcoming program called The Sovereignty Project, Nina and I taking a divide-and-conquer approach to our learning this year.
She will be diving deep into all things food preservation, gardening, EMF protection, and survival.
I'll be focusing on finance, digital independence, and health/healing at home.
Knowing 2022 will have some twists and turns, we're also being strategic and intentional about building local community.
As you think about where to study/spend time in the year ahead, I wanted to pass along a quote from James Clear that I found insightful.
"The world contains far more information than any single person can learn in their lifetime.The question is not whether you are ignorant, but what you choose to be ignorant about. Few topics are worth your precious time. Choose what you pay attention to with great care."
I would add, be smart about who you spend your time with too.
Invest in community (give with no expectation of return) before you "need it."
The more wisely you invest, the higher returns it pays.
HOW I FILTER INFORMATION TO FIND WHAT'S IMPORTANT
If, like me, you're barraged with a lot of information that might be valuable, here are a few tips for how I filter information:
Does this feel important and urgent, or is it a distraction?
What important gap in my understanding is this email/blog/video, etc likely to fill?
Might this content contain timeless wisdom about faith, health, finance, relationships, nature, or human nature?
A few tips before you dive into any piece of content.
Learn to skim effectively - scan for headlines, block quotes, and bullets. If you learn something from them, consider going deeper.
For books, read the back cover, the table of contents, the introduction, and the first paragraph of a chapter (or two). Then you'll know if it's worth going deep.
Listen "fast" - i.e. watch videos and listen to podcasts/books at 1.5X - 2X speed. If I'm not distracted, I find this increases my concentration.
When you find someone who has a lot to teach you, dive deep into all of their content.
Keep listening/reading until you feel like you've heard them make all the same points.
When you can predict what they are going to say, you can look for a new mentor. Hint: The good ones never stop learning and will likely always have things to teach you.
FINAL THOUGHTS, AND...I'D LOVE YOUR HELP
Nina and I are turning our skills of teaching, coaching, and distilling down complex information into a program we're calling The Sovereignty Project.
We're looking to curate and synthesize the most important and urgent aspects of reclaiming personal agency from those who seek to control us.
If you know any good, foundational books or documentaries I should be aware of that talk about any of the following topics are they relate to reclaiming our freedoms, please leave a comment below; I'd appreciate your suggestions.
Here are the areas of sovereignty we're studying in 2022.
Health and Healing
Home and Community
OK, I hope you find the above resources and tips helpful.
Stay well, my dear readers.
And bring it on 2022.
We got this,
PS. If you're interested to find out more about The Sovereignty Project, click here. It will be the opposite of a fire hose of good information. It's a strategic, approachable, year-long program to fully disentangle from the control grid, and build the life-giving communities we never knew we always wanted.
PPS. For current clients, the program is totally free. If you're curious about becoming a client, click here and you can request a consultation.