top of page
  • Writer's picturesunny tran


Today, a friend of mine shared a post from someone they follow on Facebook, discussing 10 perspectives on reading books. I agree with some and disagree with others. Some of the views, such as "translation errors" and "self-help books are useless," have been ongoing issues for years.

Drawing from my many years of reading experience, I will share my thoughts on these 10 perspectives. These conclusions are based not only on my own experiences but also on the insights of successful people from various fields who emphasize the importance of reading.

  • Most translated books are of poor quality? The speed of translation today cannot keep up with the pace of book publication. Many good books need to be translated as quickly as possible to meet readers' demands. Therefore, poor translations are something everyone can notice. But does poor translation affect the entire reading experience? From my perspective, the mindset of reading can compensate for poor translations. The skill of reading is truly about understanding the concepts and content the book conveys, rather than measuring every sentence and word. If you haven't formed a reading mindset, even if you have the original book or a perfectly translated one, you might not grasp the core of the book.

  • Is reading self-help books useless? It's like saying the Internet, social media, or games will destroy your brain and waste your time. I am an avid reader who dislikes the Internet, but I do not deny the value the Internet brings. To this day, I share the value and passion for books through the internet more effectively than any other means. Self-help books can be useless for some and beneficial for others. Along with literature, self-help books are not only bestsellers in Vietnam but also in other book markets.  Reading self-help books can be motivating, encouraging, and increase the reader's positive emotions. However, these same points lead many to say that self-help books are worthless because they promise too much value beyond what they actually convey. Reading self-help books requires careful selection and the ability to separate the content conveyed by the book from your own emotions.

  • Is the timing of reading the most important? Yes. The timing of reading for me is about the state of reading. The most effective reading state. This includes the reading environment and factors that directly affect reading, such as music or drinks.

  • Can applying 2-3 points from a book lead to success? Even if you don’t find any immediate points to apply, reading helps you become more disciplined and focused. I always believe that reading 99/100 books may not yield immediate benefits.  But if just 1/100 books helps me connect and synthesize all the knowledge I have read, it is completely worth it.

  • More than 50% of the books read are useless. Should one have advisors and recommendations for books? There are books that are 1000 pages long, of which 90% might seem useless. But the remaining 10% can make the patience worthwhile. Einstein once said, “If I had an hour to solve a problem, I'd spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem, and 5 minutes thinking about solutions.” Don’t give up too soon before you derive value from what you are striving to understand.

  • Only 10% of books are worth reading from beginning to end. If you can only achieve 100/10,000 hours of reading, you will never master a skill. Reading is a skill worth investing in, even if you go through thousands of hours of reading without immediate benefits.

  • Case studies in books are only 50% true. I agree with this. The author of "Deep Work," Cal Newport, writes, “Don’t expect me to provide a 100% successful solution. If I could help you, you would have to pay me.” But 50% is more than enough when you have an effective reading mindset and method to filter valuable information from books.

  • One must not only read but also think while reading. Thinking alone is not enough to deeply understand what you are reading. Don’t be too confident in your mind and brain. Read - think - take notes and write down your thoughts.

  • Reading a lot will make you think you are knowledgeable?   True and false. If you read too little across genres and too much of one genre (e.g., literature or self-help), you are not as knowledgeable as you think. But if you read across genres and spend time analyzing and debating what you read, you will always question your own views while constantly seeking to improve your thinking and knowledge. This helps you avoid thinking you are more knowledgeable just because you read books.

  • Books are just one way to gain knowledge. There are other options. This is true. Books are just a tool, and sometimes the way books convey information is slower and more time-consuming compared to the internet or videos. But the benefits of books are not limited to just a channel for gaining knowledge or information. They are a tool to help you build good habits and become less distracted compared to some other mediums. Conclusion: To fully leverage the benefits that books offer: - Read with clear intentions. - Read widely and extensively. - Read in an appropriate state and environment. - Not only read but also think and take notes. - Consider reading as a form of self-discipline.

13 views0 comments


bottom of page