The best books for freelancers in the digital age

Why am I passionate about this?

No one in my family has ever owned a business, so I always believed that the best way forward was to find employment. I followed the "expected path" in life until I obtained my Ph.D. in computer science. However, I always wondered if there was a way for me to "break free" from the corporate world. After reading hundreds of business books and watching countless hours of YouTube videos about creating a business, I finally managed to achieve my goal. I began working as a self-employed freelance developer and gradually moved towards a more scalable education business, which aligns with my purpose of helping people thrive in an exponential world.


I wrote...

Leaving the Rat Race with Python: An Insider's Guide to Freelance Developing

By Christian Mayer, Lukas Rieger,

Book cover of Leaving the Rat Race with Python: An Insider's Guide to Freelance Developing

What is my book about?

Leaving the Rat Race with Python is a practical guide for those looking to break free from traditional employment and create a successful career in the tech industry. The book is designed to teach readers how to leverage the power of Python programming language to build a profitable freelance business, allowing them to escape the rat race and achieve financial freedom. Throughout the book, Dr. Christian Mayer provides step-by-step guidance on developing essential programming skills, creating a professional portfolio, and finding clients. He also offers insights into the freelance lifestyle, such as managing finances and maintaining a healthy work-life balance. This book is an excellent resource for anyone looking to launch a freelance career in the tech industry and achieve financial independence.

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The books I picked & why

Book cover of The 80/20 Principle: The Secret to Achieving More with Less

Christian Mayer Why did I love this book?

The book helped me find more happiness, focus, and inner peace.

The focused life beats the modern-day, high-pressure corporate life by a mile. And, as a nice side effect, my productivity skyrocketed after reading it. I also understood why there is always room for leaps in human productivity – because of the fractal nature of the 80/20 principle.

After focusing on the 20% yielding 80% of the results, you can always find new leaps in productivity by focusing on the 20% of the 20% yielding 80% of the 80% of the results. It never stops!

By Richard Koch,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The 80/20 Principle as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Be more effective with less effort by learning how to identify and leverage the 80/20 principle: that 80 percent of all our results in business and in life stem from a mere 20 percent of our efforts.

The 80/20 principle is one of the great secrets of highly effective people and organizations.

Did you know, for example, that 20 percent of customers account for 80 percent of revenues? That 20 percent of our time accounts for 80 percent of the work we accomplish? The 80/20 Principle shows how we can achieve much more with much less effort, time, and resources,…


Book cover of The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results

Christian Mayer Why did I love this book?

Taught me the transformational power of focus and attacking one big task every day—I call it my command intent.

If I hit my command intent (e.g., contact X clients), I made progress on that day towards a bigger goal (e.g., a business revenue number).

The book focuses on the prioritization to achieve success in life and work. By identifying and focusing on the most important task or goal, known as the "one thing," you can maximize your productivity, achieve your goals, and experience greater fulfillment.

Focus is vital in business!

By Gary Keller, Jay Papasan,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked The ONE Thing as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

YOU WANT LESS. You want fewer distractions and less on your plate. The daily barrage of e-mails, texts, tweets, messages, and meetings distract you and stress you out. The simultaneous demands of work and family are taking a toll. And what's the cost? Second-rate work, missed deadlines, smaller paychecks, fewer promotions-and lots of stress. AND YOU WANT MORE. You want more productivity from your work. More income for a better lifestyle. You want more satisfaction from life, and more time for yourself, your family, and your friends. NOW YOU CAN HAVE BOTH-LESS AND MORE. In The ONE Thing, you'll learn…


Book cover of The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business

Christian Mayer Why did I love this book?

The book teaches nothing new – only one of the most important levers for business success, i.e., the habits you deploy in your life to reach the goals you want.

The goals are an emergent phenomenon of the habits you employ. If you choose the wrong habits, you’ll never reach your goals.

After reading this book, I started both my writing habit (at least one word per day) and my coding habit (at least one line per day) which both transformed my life

By Charles Duhigg,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked The Power of Habit as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • This instant classic explores how we can change our lives by changing our habits.

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The Wall Street Journal • Financial Times

In The Power of Habit, award-winning business reporterCharles Duhigg takes us to the thrilling edge of scientific discoveries that explain why habits exist and how they can be changed. Distilling vast amounts of information into engrossing narratives that take us from the boardrooms of Procter & Gamble to the sidelines of the NFL to the front lines of the civil rights movement, Duhigg presents…


Book cover of Managing Oneself: The Key to Success

Christian Mayer Why did I love this book?

Perform from your strengths! There can hardly be a more effective success principle than this one.

The book is very tiny – you can read it in 1-2 hours. But it has had a profound impact on my life. After reading it, I decided to quit my job and focus 100% on business because I discovered that I didn’t need a corporate environment to reach success and I didn’t need a boss either.

Only after reading Druckers' “Perform from your strengths” principle I gave myself permission to do just that – and it changed things quickly for me.

By Peter F. Drucker,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Managing Oneself as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Peter Drucker is widely regarded as the father of modern management, offering penetrating insights into business that still resonate today. But Drucker also offers deep wisdom on how to manage our personal lives and how to become more effective leaders. In these two classic articles from Harvard Business Review, Drucker reveals the keys to becoming your own chief executive officer as well as a better leader of others. "Managing Oneself" identifies the probing questions you need to ask to gain the insights essential for taking charge of your career, while "What Makes an Effective Executive" outlines the key behaviors you…


Book cover of How to Win Friends and Influence People

Christian Mayer Why did I love this book?

Smile. Be interested in the other person. Make the other person feel important.

This book helped me navigate through the difficult world of social interactions—basically allowing me to be myself rather than try to be somebody else. It contains many profound principles on how to treat and not treat people and if no matter your area of expertise, you’ll benefit greatly from reading and studying these timeless principles.

By Dale Carnegie,

Why should I read it?

17 authors picked How to Win Friends and Influence People as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Millions of people around the world have - and continue to - improve their lives based on the teachings of Dale Carnegie. In How to Win Friends and Influence People Carnegie offers practical advice and techniques, in his exuberant and conversational style, for how to get out of a mental rut and make life more rewarding.

His advice has stood the test of time and will teach you how to:
- make friends quickly and easily
- increase your popularity
- win people to your way of thinking
- enable you to win new clients and customers
- become a…


You might also like...

Api's Berlin Diaries: My Quest to Understand My Grandfather's Nazi Past

By Gabrielle Robinson,

Book cover of Api's Berlin Diaries: My Quest to Understand My Grandfather's Nazi Past

Gabrielle Robinson Author Of Api's Berlin Diaries: My Quest to Understand My Grandfather's Nazi Past

New book alert!

Why am I passionate about this?

Author Retired english professor

Gabrielle's 3 favorite reads in 2023

What is my book about?

Gabrielle found her grandfather’s diaries after her mother’s death, only to discover that he had been a Nazi. Born in Berlin in 1942, she and her mother fled the city in 1945, but Api, the one surviving male member of her family, stayed behind to work as a doctor in a city 90% destroyed.

Gabrielle retraces Api’s steps in the Berlin of the 21st century, torn between her love for the man who gave her the happiest years of her childhood and trying to come to terms with his Nazi membership, German guilt, and political responsibility.

Api's Berlin Diaries: My Quest to Understand My Grandfather's Nazi Past

By Gabrielle Robinson,

What is this book about?

"This is not a book I will forget any time soon."
Story Circle Book Reviews

Moving and provocative, Api's Berlin Diaries offers a personal perspective on the fall of Berlin 1945 and the far-reaching aftershocks of the Third Reich.

After her mother's death, Robinson was thrilled to find her beloved grandfather's war diaries-only to discover that he had been a Nazi.

The award-winning memoir shows Api, a doctor in Berlin, desperately trying to help the wounded in cellars without water or light. He himself was reduced to anxiety and despair, the daily diary his main refuge. As Robinson retraces Api's…


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