This Habit Will Put You in the Top 1% of Experts and Money-Makers

What if you could become an international expert and top earner with ONE habit for only ONE hour per day?

This one strategy changed everything for me.

I used to be a huge TV junkie. I still have a few favorites on Netflix that I turn to when I need a distraction.

But once I learned that doing this instead could make me more successful and open up tons of opportunities, I made the switch.

Before I get to that, check out these statistics:

  • 25% of people have not read a book in the last year
  • 46% of adults score in the lowest two levels of literacy
  • Reading frequency declines after age eight

What’s the message?

That most people don’t read. Half of adults are basically illiterate, and 1 out of 4 adults haven’t read a book in the last year. Here’s one more: “Reading one hour per day in your chosen field will make you an international expert in 7 years.”

In other words, reading leads to expertise. And expertise leads to success.

See where I’m going? The magic formula is to be among the very few adults who actually read. It’s no secret that if you read, you will learn.

But you can do even better. What if you commit to reading at least 1 hour every day? How about 1 book per week?

According to Brian Tracy:

“If you read only one book per month, that will put you into the top 1% of income earners in our society. But if you read one book per week, 50 books per year, that will make you one of the best educated, smartest, most capable and highest paid people in your field. Regular reading will transform your life completely.”

What have we learned so far?

  • Most people don’t read
  • If you read 1 hour per day, you can quickly become an expert
  • If you read 1 book per month, you can be in the top 1% of income earners
  • If you read 1 book per week, you can be one of the most successful people in the world

Simple, right?

You: “Great idea. But…I have no time to read one book every week!”

Ah, there’s that problem. The whole “not enough time” thing. I’ve found that if I know why I want to do X instead of Y, it makes X more important, which motivates me to do it.

Try this. Write down a list of 10 things you do every day that take up at least 30 minutes. For example:

  • Watching TV — 3 hours
  • Browsing the web — 1 hour
  • Using social media – 1 hour
  • Playing video games (or game apps) — 2 hours
  • Driving to get lunch or coffee (instead of making your own) — 1 hour

You’ll be surprised to discover that you probably have 3-6 hours of things you could easily do less of.

Then, imagine yourself 6 months from now as an expert in your field. Idle conversation won’t get you there. Watching TV won’t get you there.

But reading will get you there.

Successful German film director Werner Herzog said, “Those who read own the world, and those who watch television lose it.”

Now that you know that reading (X) is more valuable to you than your chosen time-waster (Y), take these steps TODAY to start reading more:

  1. Identify 1 hour every day where you can eliminate or reduce one of your time-wasting activities
  2. Create a daily “Read for 1 hour” calendar reminder that blocks off that hour
  3. Go to your bookshelf and find 4 books to start reading (or buy physical or ebooks online)
  4. Stack the books next to your favorite reading spot to make it really hard to ignore
  5. Move all of your digital devices AWAY from your reading spot
  6. Read every day for an hour
  7. BONUS STEP: Put a pen and notebook (waiter’s pad or Moleskine) on the stack of books so you can write down the hundreds of ideas you’ll get from reading

You: “OK, but what should I read?”

In his book The Choose Yourself Guide to Wealth, James Altucher (one of the most successful people out there) shares his daily reading formula. It’s a great place to start. Every day, read:

  • 10% of a nonfiction book to get ideas
  • 10% of an inspirational book
  • 10% of a high-quality fiction book
  • BONUS: Read a game-related book (or play a mental game like chess)

This should take you about an hour (or two if you’re feeling ambitious). If you do the math, that’s 30% of a book every day, or 1-2 books per week.

As for the specific books, here are some ideas:

  • Google the “favorite books” of your favorite successful people
  • Ask people you admire what they read
  • Follow your interests
  • I put together a list of resources if you want some more ideas

As Thomas Corley puts it in Rich Habits: “Successful people are slaves to their good daily habits.”

Become a slave to your new reading habit. Then you’ll be smarter. That will make you an expert. Which leads to success.

To learn more, check out


Philip Pape is an author, software engineer, public speaker, and life-hacker who helps smart people demolish their fears and become totally confident at He specializes in effective, counter-intuitive strategies to attain success. Check out his approach and get free stuff by clicking here. Follow Philip on Twitter @philip_pape.


Erin shows overscheduled, overwhelmed women how to do less so that they can achieve more. Traditional productivity books—written by men—barely touch the tangle of cultural pressures that women feel when facing down a to-do list. How to Get Sh*t Done will teach you how to zero in on the three areas of your life where you want to excel, and then it will show you how to off-load, outsource, or just stop giving a damn about the rest.

33 Responses to This Habit Will Put You in the Top 1% of Experts and Money-Makers

  1. Anonymous says:

    Thank you for the tips!

  2. E says:

    Thank you for the tips!

  3. Zuko Mkondo says:

    Thank you very much this is helpfull

  4. Ls says:

    Thank you, this is great motivation to start reading more

  5. Anton says:

    I’m on the way there… thank you for the words of encouragement.

  6. Marilyn says:

    Does audio books count?

  7. Alex says:

    So who read books like this strategy mentioned and is now the top 1% earner in their field?

  8. morph tv says:

    I love audio books, they are the most convenient way to gain knowledge it’s the best mode for preparation for students like me. I prefer morph tv to get some audio books.

  9. Thanks for sharing this tip. I’ll start working on this from today itself. Audiobooks are a great way to go through a book in less time. They are also more efficient in their behavior as listening helps me more than reading.

  10. Dom says:

    I’d like to see you reading 30% of a book in 1 hour.
    The average non-fiction has around 470 pages. Lets take a third of that, that would be about 123 pages in 60 minutes.

    To clarify: The average reading speed is between 200 and 250 words per minute. A page has in average 250 words on it. If you finish 2 pages each minute you are gifted with an insane reading speed.

    To correct your statement above: You could read 1/3rd of a book in ruffly 2 hours a day. Most likely longer if the content is more demanding or the book is non-fiction and more elaborated.

    That means you would have to invest around 25% of your free time daily to read about 2 books a week, and 100 books a year.

    That is a huge commitment, you shouldn’t make it sound easy just because that makes your statement look more impressive. It’s impressive enough as is: Reading daily lets people read A LOT of book in the course of a year. It accumulates. 20 pages a day comes out as 14 books a year.

    50 pages daily will probably let you read more than 35 books a year!

    As with all habits, start small, stick to it, raise in small increments (kaizen) once the habit is firmly established

  11. Pokevision says:

    Thank you for the amazing tip. I used to read books when I was a kid and I want to tell you I had learned a lot from them. But As I grew up I left reading and started watching movies and wasting my time on many other things.
    After reading this article, I would definitely start working on this 🙂

  12. James Mark says:

    Thanks for your information.

  13. malik tabish says:

    Such a worthy piece of knowledge you have shared. I will definitely give it a try to earn money.

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    Thank you for sharing your experience. Also, Check the Anime Streaming Sites

  17. Chirag says:

    Oh Lovely Info. Thanks for the topic

  18. shan haider says:

    thanks for sharing your experience. I’ll start working on this from today itself.

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  21. Readlax says:

    Great article. A lot of useful information. Most I like this one “if you read one book per week, 50 books per year, that will make you one of the best educated, smartest, most capable and highest paid people in your field”. Recommend Readlax to train speed reading without losing comprehension.

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