Reading books is good for the soul

There's so much content out there, but so little time. Personally, I'm wary of overstimulation yet want to stay updated, intellectually fresh, and maximize return on my voracious reading habit.

So my system now is to check Nuzzel once a day (mainly Marc Andreesen's feed), send top articles on Longform to my Kindle, and read weekly newsletters (e.g. Benedict Evans). In print, I read Bloomberg Businessweek and sometimes the Wall Street Journal.

I still enjoy the occasional Buzzfeed article, but my system allows me to read what's most relevant to my interests, stay current on the news, and go deep into a story. The time I may have otherwise spent clicking through sites and skimming stories is devoted to reading books.

There's truly nothing more satisfying than lounging around with a good book and sipping your beverage of choice. Books take you on adventures, challenge your perspectives, and a good one will shape the way you think and interact with the world. You get to go deep into a topic and play around with it in your head instead of get distracted by (admittedly amusing) clickbait. It's a medium I tend to forget in the world of instant gratification articles (plus a heavy school workload), but one I constantly push myself to return to.

Some favorites from this year:

Technology
Rise of the Robots - A panoramic glimpse into the not-too-distant future of automation— absolutely fascinating.
Why Information Grows - Explores ideas about economics and information through the eyes of a physicist. I love writing that gives me a new way of thinking, and this is definitely one.
You Are Not a Gadget - Another thought-provoking book about the nature of technology, and how it's influenced us.
Technological Revolutions and Financial Capital - Carlota Perez discusses patterns of technological revolutions through history, and the socio-economic paradigm shifts and fluctuations of financial capital that come with them. I wonder why more people don't rave about it.

Fiction
Barbara the Slut and Other People - A fun read with candid short stories, especially for a 20-something.
All the Light We Cannot See - Absolutely beautiful, intricate writing that made me sigh aloud.
Fates and Furies - The story of a marriage told from both perspectives, with beautiful language. I discovered Lauren Groff after reading her short story, "Above and Below," in the New Yorker in 2010. I had forgotten her name and in 2014 scoured through NYer archives to find her, and have since read most of her books (Delicate Edible Birds is my favorite).
White Noise - An enjoyable read with sharp observations about the effects of technology, information overload, and consumerism.

Economics
Other People's Money - In the frenzy of campus finance recruiting this fall, I wondered if it would be an industry worth exploring. This was a challenging read that didn't necessarily answer my question, but gave me a nice understanding of finance's origins and development to where it is today.
Economics Rules - A lively read with many insights. Made me happy to be an economics major.
The Idealist - Nina Munk examines the disconnect between big ideas in economic development, and the lives it tries to improve. Furthered my questioning into what effective international aid means.
Misbehaving - Richard Thaler, a pioneer in behavioral economics, introduces behavioral economics. Lots of interesting ideas that deepen my understanding of the field.

Self-help
Meditations - I carry a dog-eared copy of this around and read it often. Definitely wish it were less anti-woman, but I'll cut Marcus Aurelius some slack. Many great insights packed in here.
Daring Greatly - This book by Brene Brown (who gave a famous TED talk) examines the importance of being vulnerable. It changed the way I connect and communicate, and enriched me tremendously.
Tiny Beautiful Things - I know Cheryl Strayed from her excellent podcast, Dear Sugar— this book is a compilation of her original advice column and exudes compassion, wisdom, and empathy.
Peace is Every Step - Another dog-eared book I read often. Thich Nhat Hanh is a treasure.

Other
Between the World and Me - Ta-Nehisi Coates is a fantastic writer, and this book is powerful and resonant.
Yoga and Body Image - Beautiful essays on the struggle with body image and eating disorders, and the power of a yoga practice.
If Hemingway Wrote JavaScript - Literature + JavaScript = An absolute delight.

My advice for reading more would be to make it part of your daily routine— an inescapable habit. For me, it's now 30 minutes right after waking up, and up to an hour right before bed. My Kindle is always in my bag so I whip it out on public transportation as well. This probably makes me sound boring and old, but I'm okay with it.