Books have the power to change lives. I really believe that. If I cast my mind backwards, there are countless memories of troubling times, comforted only by a loving book. There are also happier times where it’s because of a book that I’ve got a spring in my step that day. When I’ve needed them most, books have served up words of wisdom, thought-provoking insight and Aha moments.
It occurred to me that if books have played such an important part of my life, they might also help you too. So I’ve put together a list of the 10 books that have had the most impact on my life. They aren’t ‘career books’ per se, but books that have touched my soul in some way. I hope one of these books will impact you in the same way 🙂
1. What I Know For Sure by Oprah Winfrey. I remember reading this book cover to cover in Bali. I was mid-burn out and my adrenal glands were frazzled to a pulp. This book gave me hope. And it made me realise the importance of self-care. There are so many bite-sized nuggets of wisdom ~ it’s like Oprah’s entire life lessons whittled down into succinct snippets. I cannot recommend this book enough, it’s guaranteed to inspire you and make you feel like Oprah is right there next to you giving you a massive hug.
2. The Obstacle is The Way by Ryan Holiday. I found out about this by Tim Ferris (thankyou Tim!) and it seriously helped me through some pretty dark times. Based on Stoicism, Ryan shares inspiring stories of historical figures who have taken their greatest struggles and turned them on their heads and into solutions. Amazing, amazing, amazing book to read, especially if you’re having a tumultuous time or life has served you up a poop sandwich recently :p
3. Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda. I’ve read this book maybe ten times (and certain chapters more than that). From the moment in Rishakesh (India) where the alluring book cover drew me in, I’ve had a very special relationship with this book. It will open your heart and mind to what’s really possible in life (along with some serious spiritual truths along the way). It’s said that this book was the only book found on Steve Jobs’ laptop and that he read it every single year.
4. Turning Pro, Steven Pressfield. This book is crazy good if you’re getting stuck in the claws of procrastination and not living up to your potential in life. It’s a super short read, but it literally feels like your best friend is right there whispering smart encouraging advice in your ear. It’s especially good for anyone who’s trapped by the inertia of either changing careers or getting a hobby-business off the ground.
5. Return to Love by Marianne Williamson. This book is powerful and so beautifully written. It will open your heart to life in ways unimaginable. If you ever struggle with fear in your life, this is the book to read. The section on relationships is really, really, insightful too.
6. The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle. Game changer. Happiness lies in the present moment ~ this is the truth that Eckhart unveils in this masterpiece. All of our troubles lie in the past or the future: the present moment however, is where peace lies. A simple, but honest truth. The book teaches you how to connect to the present more easily so you can tap into the joys of life.
7. The Power of Intention by Wayne Dyer. I’ve read this maybe 5 times. It was one of the first personal –growthy type books I read and it completely blew me away. I do really believe that intention is everything. Also, everything is energy too (this is just physics right?). Wayne explains the concept of energy and it’s relation to creating success in your life in a really fun, warm way.
8. Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway by Susan Jeffers. An oldie but a goodie. I think I read this at least 10 years ago now, but the no nonsense advice cuts through any fears you may be facing in life. It’s a wonderful tool to get you out of ‘feeling stuck’ and into action! Plenty of references to changing careers in this one too (including a great section on how to know if you should quit your job and try something new).
9. Tears to Triumph by Marianne Williamson. Hmm two books by Marianne! I just had to include this one because I read it recently and the section on grief literally cracked my mind and heart open to a new way of processing loss. This book comforted me so, so, much during a period of deep grieving (I have shared this book with at least 7 friends in the last 2 weeks).
10. Like a queen by Constance Hall. This one’s for all the mammas out there. A hilarious, uncensored, deep-dive into the truth of motherhood. I laughed out-loud reading this and on those really tough days you have as a parent, it made me see a light at the end of the tunnel and realise how great I’m actually doing. A MUST if you’re a mamma (a great gift for other mammas too, my bestie gifted this to me when I was pregnant to lighten the load).