2016 was an insanely busy and sleep-depriving year. The birth of my son is probably the biggest change in my life, followed only very closely by marriage. It's insane how it changes everything, and I felt totally unprepared. I've learned a lot about how we grow up to be the people we are, and I've read way too many books about baby sleep.
1. The Truth: Nice follow-up to The Game, and it's a fun read that somewhat mirrors the developments/progress in my own life.
2. Do the Work: Another nice follow-up to The War of Art, a book I loved. Really kicks your butt into gear to execute.
3. Peak: Heard about this on the Freakonomics podcast and enjoyed its exploration of deliberate practice. Quite applicable to magic and other fields.
4. Elevating Child Care: Really nice coverage of the RIE approach with practical tips and dialogue.
5. No Bad Kids: Toddler-specific applications of RIE principles.
6. Dear Parent: Concise and to-the-point explanation of all aspects of a baby's life by the founder of RIE itself, Magda Gerber.
7. Bringing Up Bebe: Nice, fun story I identified a lot with. Plus I reminisced about and enjoyed the descriptions of Paris.
8. Baby-Led Weaning: Foundational text on the solids introduction approach that made the most sense to me and worked best for us.
9. How to Talk So Kids Will Listen: Really helpful read, probably more for down the line in a few years, but still really nice frameworks and ideas and sample dialogues in here.
10. Einstein Never Used Flashcards: Great overview of the published scientific papers around baby brain development and what kinds of games, toys, and activities make the most sense. Actually backs up a lot of elements of the RIE method.
11. One Hundred Years of Solitude: This book kept coming up on Tim Ferriss's podcast, and it certainly was an interesting and complex read. I kind of got bogged down by the many characters and details after a while but enjoyed the way it was written and the entire world created by the author.
12. A Moveable Feast: Anything about Paris automatically earns brownie points.
13. In Order to Amaze: Insanely devious and well-constructed routines and principles in here.
14. Mnemonica: The encyclopedia on this very powerful piece of card magic and a lot of fun to read.
15. The Magic of Ascanio: Foundational text on magic theory and construction, inspiring so many ideas that many rely and build on today.
- Becoming a dad
- Feeding another human being
- Clothing another human being
- Cleaning up after another human being
- Getting another human being to fall asleep (without hypnosis :P)
- Sleeping less than 4 hours per night for many nights in a row. Feeling what it must feel like to be drunk or have a much lower IQ.
- Reading books about and for babies
- Learning to travel with a baby and the critical "shit:child" ratio to be optimized and minimized over time
Things that were good
- Becoming a dad
- Getting through the tough times by digging deep for strength and patience
Areas for improvement
- Patience and perseverance still have a lot of room for improvement
- Learning to enjoy each moment more rather than worrying about optimizing all the details
- Learning to go with the flow and relax more
- Learning to accept change and elements of life outside my control