Relevant. Purposeful. Selected for you.

There are countless books available on improving professional skills, but most of us have little time to read them, let alone sift through all to find the ones worth reading. So, we decided to help with that first step by sharing books we've found very helpful and relevant to our nonprofit sector.

The club is open to all staff at Center member organizations. We know how busy everyone is, so we'll allow plenty of time for each book.


Sixth book: Atomic Habits by James Clear

No matter your goals, Atomic Habits offers a proven framework for improving--every day. James Clear, one of the world's leading experts on habit formation, reveals practical strategies that will teach you exactly how to form good habits, break bad ones, and master the tiny behaviors that lead to remarkable results.

If you're having trouble changing your habits, the problem isn't you. The problem is your system. Bad habits repeat themselves again and again not because you don't want to change, but because you have the wrong system for change. You do not rise to the level of your goals. You fall to the level of your systems. Here, you'll get a proven system that can take you to new heights.

Join us as we learn how to make "good habits inevitable and bad habits impossible."

Fifth book: The Mountain Is You by Brianna Wiest

This is a book about self-sabotage. Why we do it, when we do it, and how to stop doing it—for good. Coexisting but conflicting needs create self-sabotaging behaviors. This is why we resist efforts to change, often until they feel completely futile. But by extracting crucial insight from our most damaging habits, building emotional intelligence by better understanding our brains and bodies, releasing past experiences at a cellular level, and learning to act as our highest potential future selves, we can step out of our own way and into our potential.

For centuries, the mountain has been used as a metaphor for the big challenges we face, especially ones that seem impossible to overcome. To scale our mountains, we actually have to do the deep internal work of excavating trauma, building resilience, and adjusting how we show up for the climb. In the end, it is not the mountain we master, but ourselves.

Fourth book: The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz

A New York Times bestseller for over a decade, Don Miguel Ruiz reveals the source of self-limiting beliefs that rob us of joy and create needless suffering. Based on ancient Toltec wisdom, The Four Agreements offer a powerful code of conduct that can rapidly transform our lives to a new experience of freedom, true happiness, and love.

“This book by Don Miguel Ruiz, simple yet so powerful, has made a tremendous difference in how I think and act in every encounter.” — Oprah Winfrey


Third book: Deep Work by Cal Newport

Deep Work dives in to how to revolutionize work habits in a world where distractions are prevalent and attention spans are short. Newport presents a rigorous training regimen for readers to follow, as a series of four "rules" for transforming your mind and habits.

Cal Newport is a computer science professor at Georgetown University and a New York Times bestselling author of seven books. Newport is also a regular contributor to the New Yorker, the New York Times, and WIRED.

“The Center’s book club is excited to dive into Cal Newport’s book about staying focused in a world where distractions are around every corner.” Patrick Rabiecki, Member Associate and co-planner of the Book Club.

Second book: For Every One by Jason Reynolds

After listening to Jason Reynolds' inspiring words at the Center’s 2020 Annual Celebration, we are excited to dive deeper into his mind through his book of poems, For Every One.

Jason is an author and poet from Washington, DC. He has occupied three slots on the New York Times best seller lists for children's literature and won The National Book Award in 2016.

“I'm excited to read For Every One, a collection of poems by Jason Reynolds. I have a feeling that the poems will be inspirational and will encourage introspection,” Aziza Rush, VitalHealth Customer Operations Coordinator and co-planner of the Book Club.

First Book: The Ideal Team Player by Patrick Lencioni

The Center's Book Club is proud to announce the completion of our first book, The Ideal Team Player by Patrick Lencioni. Through this book, Lencioni introduces readers to the “3 essential virtues” (humble, hungry and smart), delving into the aspects of each and what makes them so important. Each month, the Center team sent out notes on what they had read that month, and gave others a chance to share their thoughts on what they read. On Friday, April 16, we held our wrap-up meeting to discuss the book in its entirety. A huge thank you to all who participated in our first round of our Center Book Club!