We all know that it’s important to keep our bodies healthy. That’s why we do our best to eat right and stay active. Having a healthy mind and spirit is equally important though. It’s not always easy, but when you do find that balance, you’re able to accomplish more than you ever realized, all while finding peace and happiness within. It’s just a start and it’s always going to be hard work, but here are our top five self help books to guide you and help you be a better you this year.
“The Artist’s Way” by Julie Cameron
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Whether you’re a working, aspiring or wannabe artist, “The Artist’s Way” is a great tool for unlocking that artist within. Even if you don’t consider yourself a creative person, the exercises and signature morning pages will inspire you and help you discover what’s stopping you from being your full creative self. At times it can be frustrating and even painful, as you figure out what’s been blocking you from doing the things you truly love. However, if you stick with this 12 week workbook, you’ll soon start seeing roadblocks (often that you’ve put up yourself) melt away. Next thing you know, exciting and more fulfilling opportunities start to present themselves, and because you’ve done the work on yourself, you’ll be ready to accept with open arms. Meanwhile, you’ll find that you’re having more fun, especially when you do your once a week “artist date” and take yourself somewhere fun that feeds the creative need we all have inside. juliacameronlive.com
“The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up” by Maria Kondo
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Just because it’s trendy right now doesn’t mean it’s not a good book. In fact best selling, super popular manual, “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up” can make a huge difference in your life. Following Kondo’s guidance and asking yourself, “Does it spark joy?” you’ll learn how to declutter your closets, and soon the rest of your house. Before you know it, following the Kondo way will make a huge difference in how you organize the rest of your life too. It’s especially great for those “neat-freaks” or people who love orderly things, but can’t seem to keep things that way. Maria Kondo helps explain why we fall back into bad clutter habits, and how to avoid it. The end result is a neater, tidier home that fills you with joy, because each item has been vetted specifically to what makes you feel joy. tidyingup.com
“Mindset: The New Psychology of Success” by Carol Dweck
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How often have we heard, “She’s got so much potential” and yet that’s where things end? It’s a problem for millions of people and finally, Stanford University psychologist Carol Dweck puts her years of research into a great book that will help you learn how to fulfill that potential. Rather than just knowing or being praised for our talents, Dweck says the difference is if we approach those with a “fixed or growth mindset.” Having the right mindset can motivate you, those around you and help you actually reach those goals, not just have the potential to. Her research shows that this simple mindset idea, a key component of the brain, can actually rewire you to love learning and have the resilience to accomplish more than you even realized was possible. mindsetonline.com
“The 5 Love Languages” by Gary Chapman
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An oldie but a goodie, “The 5 Love Languages” was published over 35 years ago, but it still holds true. Gary Chapman helps explain the various ways we feel and interpret love. Some are through acts of service, other feel loved through kind words and praise, while others feel loved through gifts. While you may love getting flowers, your significant other might feel loved when you do something nice for them. This doesn’t mean one of you loves more than the other, but these differences can lead to miscommunications and frustration. By figuring out not only how you best feel loved, but how those in your life feel it, you’ll be able to build much better and more fulfilling relationships. Often used for couples, the book is certainly helpful for friendships as well. Because once you know your own love language (we often show our love the way we like to receive it), communication and appreciation become much more clear. To get started, check out the 5 Love Languages website to learn more about the book and take a quiz and figure out your love language.
“The Happiness Project: Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun” by Gretchen Rubin
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When it comes down to it, we’re all just searching for happiness. Whether in our jobs, relationship, family, social lives or hobbies, it’s one of the biggest shared human experiences - the need to be happier. In the New York Times bestseller, Gretchen Rubin dedicated an entire year to her project. She tested out theories, scientific research, lessons from pop culture and words of wisdom to figure out where true happiness comes from. Turns out, this isn’t just a “the feelings on the inside make you happier” kind of book, Rubin learned some real truths, like how yes, money can help you be happier if you’re wise with it and how having inner peace really is affected by outside factors. Taking what she learned during that year can really make a difference in your life too. In fact, it’s so influential that Happiness Project discussion groups have formed all over the world and it’s regularly assigned for ready in the academia world, and by clergy, psychiatrists, and friends who want to help other friends find true joy. gretchenrubin.comThis post was originally published on Laila Ali Lifestyle