A lot of us spend our lives delaying gratification. Often, the reward is higher later if you can forego the pleasure today. Value investors know all about this. But there is a risk that tomorrow doesn't come. When Breath Becomes Air is written by a guy who spent his whole life deferring potential rewards, only to be cursed with terminal cancer just as he was about to graduate as a surgeon.
I was deeply affected by the author's story. He experienced death daily as a resident at the hospital, and was learning how to deal with it, when the situation was flipped and *he* became the patient. He was robbed of the rest of his life while just in his mid-30s, giving him only enough time to write a book about his experience.
This book definitely exercises the areas of the brain concerned with empathy. It makes you grateful for your own life, and reminds you how fragile it is.
It's also really short, at just over 100 pages. I highly recommend it, as it won't take up much of your time either.