In my opinion these four books are game changers. They are a must read for every coach who wants to be the best they can be. I wish I would have all of these available to me when I started coaching.
Brain Rules – 12 Principles for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home, and School by John Medina. I just finished reading this for the second time. It is so rich in content it almost does require a second reading to absorb all the details. Medina takes the most current research on cognitive neuroscience and puts it into twelve rules he calls the brain rules. The rules are understandable and easy to apply. This rules can make a real difference in your coaching and in life.
The Chimp Paradox – The Mind Management Programme for Confidence, Success and Happiness by Steve Lewis. Lewis by training is a forensic psychiatrist. He worked with British cycling the last eight years. I first heard of him in an article I was reading about Chris Hoy the British cyclist who gave Peters much of the credit for his success. According to Peters we have three brains: the Human Brain, The Computer Brain and Chimp Brain. The trick is to learn to use the human brain and the computer brain to your best advantage and learn when to put the chimp in the cage and when to let the chimp out. The key is to get the three brains working together. The Chimp can be your best friend or your worst enemy, hence the chip paradox. This is without a doubt the best book I have read on mental preparation. Get it, read and reread it, it is a great resource. Learning to manage the chimp can make a big difference.
A Failure of Nerve – Leadership in the Age of the Quick Fix by Edwin H. Friedman. He pulls no punches in his recommendations and criticism of the quick fix society we live in. By no means is this light leisure reading, but this man who was an advisor to presidents and business leaders imparts a wisdom that only someone who has worked at the highest levels of leadership and decision making would be able to do.
Winning Matters - by Frank Dick. This is another gem that I just reread for the second time. Frank is a friend and mentor who has had a huge influence on my coaching career. This is a practical work full of ideas and aphorisms that will make a difference in your day-to-day coaching. His wisdom and experience as a leader come through loud and clear. It is clearly a handbook for winning.