People who have witnessed my massive transformation in recent years often ask how I did it. A lot of it was due to coaching but much of it came from reading (or listening) to powerful books that offered ideas or tools that when I incorporated them literally changed my life.
It's amazing how books and the stories and messages in them can strongly impact how you view life or help you to make changes that have a significant impact on your life. That's what these books did for me. Because of my schedule I listened to most of them on Audible and bookmarked sections that I listened to numerous times. I also bought the hard copy of most of them so I could highlight sections to go back to as well. Yes, they are that good. I hope you gain some tools that bring you peace if you choose to try them.
Expectation Hangover by Christine Hassler - for all of my fellow perfectionists and ultra planners, this book has many tools to help you navigate the delta between what you expected in your life and what you got. It especially addresses the mind drama and suffering we create about the difference. This is the book I referenced in a previous post about release writing. Christine does an exceptional job of outlining the challenges we face because of the way we respond to things not going as expected and tools to help when you aren't feeling your best. When I struggled with a lot of anxiety and frustration, I found the tools in this book incredibly helpful to shift my level of energy and minimize the negative experience. This is by far the most impactful book in my life and one I strongly recommend if you struggle with perfectionism or get attached to the way you think things are "supposed to be".
The Gifts of Imperfection by Brene' Brown - All of Brene's work is incredibly impactful but as a former and recovering perfectionist, I found this book to be her very best. Brene' outlines the ten guideposts to wholehearted living. The guideposts not only help us understand the practices that will allow us to change our lives and families, they also walk us through the unattainable and sabotaging expectations that get in the way. As most of you have experienced, Brene's work on shame and resilience is truly inspirational.
You are a Bad*ss by Jen Sincero - How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life. Jen provides numerous doable steps and ways to look at your life that will have you laughing out loud and making a meaningful impact in your life if you follow her advice. She has several follow up books because of the popularity of this one. This was one of the first "self help books" that I read that really helped me. I listened to and read parts of it over and over again.
Loving What Is by Byron Katie - In this book, Byron Katie discusses what she calls "the Work" which is essentially asking 4 questions for anything that is causing you stress or unhappiness. 1. Is it true? 2. Can I absolutely know that it's true? 3. How do I react when I think that thought? 4. Who would I be without the thought? When you find yourself struggling with a thought that you can't seem to move away from or is making you miserable, if you'll try asking yourself these four questions, you might be surprised to see the shifts you experience.
Girl Stop Apologizing by Rachel Hollis - I highly recommend both of Rachel's first books, Girl Wash Your Face and Girl Stop Apologizing. Overall, I think Girl Wash Your Face might be a bit better but one of the things that Rachel does in her books is to go on sort of a rant about something and in Girl Stop Apologizing, she was on a rant about being your best and really going for your all that completely inspired me. I don't remember exactly what she said but I remember exactly where I was in my car when I was listening to her and her words had such an impact on me, it completely changed the way I was thinking about my career and ultimately led to me creating my coaching practice and what I expect to be my legacy. Incredible!
Much of the underlying themes in these books are similar and give you tools and ideas to help you take care of yourself, help you change your thoughts to create improvement or peace in your life. I find that as I read or listen to these, I capture some new nugget that is impactful in some way to improve my life. I hope you find this too.