I don’t know who or where I would be without reading the books mentioned in this post. They gave me so much insight along with many growing pains. These books are always the ones I recommend when people tell me of their struggles or the ways they want to improve themselves.
For those of you who are out of school for the summer or going on a summer vacation from work and want a good read, try one of these books. I know many of us are often tempted to read other genres like fantasy or drama but these books are just as interesting. I will also be sharing a bit about how these books helped me. For the most part they just opened my eyes to a totally different perspective about how to live my life. I hope you find some value in this and decided to read at least one of these.
Personality Plus by Florence Littauer is at the top of my list. I struggled while reading this book because it made me question who I was and who I wanted to be. The author spent 7 years researching and writing this book. It details different personalities traits as a way for you to understand yourself more. To help you recognize your strengths and weaknesses and also help you relate with others. Instead of feeling frustrated with others you come to understand who they are and why they do the things they do. This book helped me come out of my comfort zone and face my faults. It helped me feel at peace with who I am and gave me some direction to where I want to go. If you feel lost or confused and want to understand yourself better, then this book has a lot to offer.
This next book came into my life at a perfect time and has helped me in every aspect. Who Moved My Cheese by Spencer Johnson is about change and the different ways of dealing with it. Change is something that is reoccurring, whether we like it or not change is inevitable. This book helped me realize that I wasn’t handling all the changes in my life as great as I thought I was. My perspective changed and I realized that my bad attitude and negative vibe was not doing me any favors. I kept trying to blame my problems and unwanted change on other people. In reality the changes that were occurring in my life where not their fault in any way. Soon, I realized some of the changes where not all bad. When I stopped resisting I realized I had nothing to fear and I was able to see that these changes were guiding me where I needed to go in life. After a while I learned how to control some of the changes by the decisions I was making. This book may be small but definitely mighty.
The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman is not just meant to be applied for your significant other but can also be used on friends and family members. Love is a universal language but not everyone receives and gives love in the same ways. This book changed my entire perspective about how I give love to those in my life. It opened my eyes to the many problems that were festering due to my ignorance. After reading this book, my relationship with my partner grew for the better. We started to communicate better, therefore we had less arguments and we started to show each other the ways we need to feel loved. For example, I feel loved and appreciated when he cleans up around the house and finishes some errands for me. Before he thought I felt loved by all the gifts he would buy me but it wasn’t what I needed. This book really opens your eyes to how you treat your loved ones. Sometimes, we think “oh my partner (kids, parents,etc.) knows I love them, I am not worried about it”, and yet problems and difficult arguments arise that is saying otherwise. Give it a read if you want to make sure you are helping those in your life feel loved and appreciated.
Next, How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie is a book that took me months to read! One of my weaknesses (yes, you read that right, I’m sharing with you one of my biggest weaknesses, that I try to improve on every day) is that I am horrible at building relationships! It seems like others can make new friends on a whim and start conversations with anyone. I don’t aspire to be that way but I do envy the people who can do that. I am not as forthcoming and open with others. This book helped me change the way I view and treats others. Even though I feel like I still have a long way to go, I feel more relaxed with people. There are so many people in our lives, from our families, friends and coworkers, it is important to learn how to treat others and how to handle certain situations.
The Power of Introverts in a World that can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain is a must read for every introvert out there. If you would like a sneak peak, the author also has a TED Talk on YouTube you can check out. I recommend this book to extroverts as well because we all have a friend or a family member who is introverted and this book can help shine some light on them. This book gave me so many “ah-ha” and “oh my goodness, this is so me” moments. It helped me realize there is no need to be ashamed or apologetic about my quiet self. If you are an introvert reading this, you will definitely receive a change in perspective.
Next, Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill is a must read! Some people get thrown off by the title and think this is such baloney! There’s no way that you can just think and grow rich. In a way those people are right. It is not something that happens overnight, growing “riches” takes a certain mentally. People who grow riches know and live by different rules. You do have to think differently and it is definitely something you can learn. “Riches” means something different to everyone, not everyone wants the same lifestyle, like in the book, you need to decide what you truly want in life before starting the journey. This book helped me realize I can create any life I want by putting my mind to it and starting one step at a time. Nothing is off limits.
Lastly, Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki is a book that proves to you that there is no one right way to achieve what you want. You don’t need to follow what society is telling you to do, there is an entire different way to accomplish what you want out of life. Whatever you desire is going to take work, there is no shortcut. This book helped me in a time when I felt lost and ashamed. I had just decided to drop out of college and live with my boyfriend and his family. My parents were furious! This was something that I didn’t decide on a whim, I spent weeks thinking about it and all I knew was that I was unhappy where I was in life. I was 19 years old and I felt so out of place. Everyone else was in school and here I was with no direction, money, car or job. After making the decision, the one thing I did feel, is that I was right where I needed to be–even if I did feel scared out of my mind. This book taught me how to build something for myself and taught how money works. Through all that, I was able to start a couple of businesses, get different jobs, and most importantly find the direction I wanted to go in.
I didn’t read all these books at once, It took me less than a year to get through these. The people around me started to notice changes. They would ask me what I was doing differently or would ask about “sudden” changes they were seeing in me. Maybe to them it was sudden but to me it took countless minutes, hours, days and months of reading and reflecting. It took many sleepless and worried nights– nights where I just cried and felt like I knew nothing about myself or my future. These books gave me the information and perspective I needed to find my place and move forward. No matter where you are in life these books have a lot to offer and can bring to light so much about your life and help you move onto the next level.
Life is always going to be a little weird and challenging but these books may help you find your strength and confidence.
Don’t underestimate the power of reading, all the greats do it!!
Keep an eye out on my Instagram stories, I will be sharing these books there!!!
Let me know in the comments which one you have read or want to read!!
Until next time,