The Most Underrated Educational Resource for Your Business

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educational business resource

educational business resource

Let me guess: You have spent maybe a couple hundred (or thousands) of dollars on the shiniest, newest online course. Or perhaps you have put down close to a hundred bucks for a new workshop that promises to solve all your problems. Yet you are still in the same place that you were before you purchased these digital goodies. What’s the deal?

I have a strong suspicion that it all comes down to not truly implementing (or even consuming) the information from these resources -- and I have an idea of why that is.

No, it is not that you are lazy or undisciplined. In fact, it’s pretty common for digital products to gather proverbial dust. In my opinion, it’s actually that you’re using the wrong resource.

The good news? The solution is more obvious than you think. It’s simple: Turn back to the printed book.

Here is a list of reasons why physical stands to beat digital:

1. The price can’t be beat

You absolutely cannot beat the price of a book. There are so many books that you can get for free at a local library. Even if you want your own copy, it rarely costs you more than $25 from a retailer like Amazon or Barnes & Noble. (Talk about a huge relief after you’ve spent $2,000 on that last online course.)

2. They offer a break from the screen

If you are anything like me, you stare at screens all day. After I am done with client work, the last thing I want to do is look at the screen. Books are a relief for me; I am getting information without straining my eyes.

3. They’re completely portable

I don’t know about you, but my back is always in pain after I lug my laptop anywhere. The best part about a book is that it’s completely portable. You can take it with you pretty much anywhere without risking a trip to the chiropractor. You also don’t have the stress of trying to find a plug to charge your equipment or a wifi network with a strong enough signal. The best part? You can multitask while reading a book. You can read it while you are on the treadmill or while you are waiting in line at the grocery store.

4. You can go your own pace

When I am watching a live class, I feel like I don’t have time to digest all the information, and I almost certainly feel that way when I am reading an ebook on my computer. Something about reading a physical book slows me down. I can look up from my book and think about what I read. If I feel overwhelmed by the amount of information I am reading, I can put my book down and mark my place with my bookmark. I can leave at any time and immediately pick up where I left off. No more waiting ten more minutes for the video to finish or trying to find where you left off in your ebook.

5. You can mark up those margins

I love writing in the margins of my books. It helps me engage with the information and remember it. There is also the added benefit of being able to just open your book and immediately find the most pertinent parts (because you underlined them). As an added bonus, you will have your notes all in one place! You will no longer have to flip through all your notebooks to find the notes or go through all the Post-Its on your desk.

6. Endless information

Of course, I must not forget the most important part of reading books: getting information. There is no point in reading if you are not learning something (whether it is about yourself or your business). If you are looking for information on a topic, I can guarantee there is a book out there about it. The sky’s the limit! Also, unlike Wikipedia, the odds are good that the book’s information will be correct (at least, if it has been traditionally published).

Recommended business reads

There you have it, a list of reasons to take a note from Belle and visit your local library. Who knows? You might have a happily ever after for your business fairytale.

Not sure where to start? Here are a few books that I recommend for solopreneurs:

  • Get Rich, Lucky Bitch! by Denise Duffield-Thomas: Are you struggling with money? Do you feel like you are constantly pinching pennies? This book will help you feel like you are rich, even if you bank account tells you otherwise.
  • Creative, Inc. by Joy Deangdeelert Cho and Meg Mateo Ilasco: This was the first business book that I ever read, and it pretty much changed my life. If you are a freelancer, this book will give you everything you need to get your business off the ground.
  • Different: Escaping the Competitive Herd by Youngme Moon: Want to stand out from the crowd? This book gives great advice on how to be original and make a splash.

Keep learning

Learning is imperative as a solopreneur. But it doesn’t have to mean spending thousands of dollars or mastering tech. Go old school with the printed book and soak up all the new information that’s suddenly at your fingertips.

P.S. A quick note from the editor: We <3 books here at One Woman Shop. Check out some of our #OWSBookClub reads here.

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Sarah Fox is a novel writing coach and editor who helps ambitious authors start and complete their novels. When she is not working on her own novel, she writes for Quirk Books and Imaginary Book Club. You can find her thoughts on writing and pop culture at

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