Self-Help Mornings

Weekend mornings are one of my favorite times of the week. Our apartment has great morning lighting, and being able to soak up the quiet and read without distraction is such a delight. It seems like this is one of the only times of the week where I'm actually able to actually relax instead of pretending like I'm relaxing while re-reviewing my to do list in my head.

I've been on a "lifestyle improvement" book trend here lately and have been absorbing some great knowledge. I know Harley is sick of me spouting off inspirational quotes any time I'm feeling down, but reading about these concepts and success stories has me so passionate about creating my own! ----------

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck // As you can probably tell by the title, this book is very straightforward. Mark Manson's writing voice is entertaining and hilarious, and his no-nonsense attitude to giving advice is a refresher in a genre that can often be cliched. This was the first book in my recent improvement journey and was a great intro to the self-help world. The entire concept of the book is that you can only care about a finite number of things, so you should make sure the things you focus your energy on are important and productive. A good, quick read that will challenge your perspectives by encouraging you to care less to care more.

You are a Badass // Okay, I am obsessed with this book. This is one I could see myself re-reading regularly, which is something I never do. It's broken up into 27 chapters that range in length but are all manageably sized. My favorite part is that at the end of each chapter, there's a 'digest' that goes over the concepts and how to apply them. The headline at the front of the book really says it all; it's the guide on how to live your best life. Some of the exercises Jen has you do are hard, forcing you to confront all kinds of subconscious feelings and doubts. I enjoy this approach because it can be easy to focus on the quick-fixes that to feel better without addressing the deep, important issues that influence every aspect of your life. If you're looking for a book that gives you the confidence to chase your dreams, this one is it.

The Happiness Project // I haven't started on this one yet but I am so enamored with it's concept that I can't wait to give it a try. Gretchen Rubin, sitting on a bus one day, decides she's unhappy with her life. What does she do? She decides right then and there that she's going to change it and create the happiness she desires. She then divides up the next year of her life into month-long sections where she completely commits to a lifestyle change to find what works for her. This is such an empowering concept and I am excited to read about her story!

----------

While I've certainly full on thrown myself into this new phase, I'm really excited about how it's helping me better myself! A lot of things in books like this may seem like common sense, but the execution of them is so easy to forget about. Like, duh, I'm supposed to always believe in myself to make the changes I know I can make, but it doesn't always seem that simple in our day to day lives.

Having authors who put these concepts into words and really believe them is an inspiration, and I know I'll pull from what I'm learning for years to come.

I'm about to move across the country, completely change my career to something I'm not yet qualified for, and leave all my friends and family behind. However, this is the life I know that I want for myself, and as long as I keep myself focused, determined, and working my butt off, I'll be able to create the best life I could possibly imagine (maybe one day I'll even get to buy all of my groceries at Whole Foods! That's what I call living your best life).

 

booksAmanda McDowell