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While I argue that a life coach is a better resource than articles and books about self-improvement, there have been several books that have kickstarted my outlook on life. I’ve read all of these books and found immense value in them. In fact, some of them were so life changing that I dropped what I was doing and did the action! From meditation to minimalism and simple living to creativity and writing, these are great books for you to start your journey on your own time.
Yes! I was a skeptic. Reading this book was a huge sigh of relief that my meditation life wasn’t a total failure. Finally there was someone out there who didn’t ‘get it’ the first time around. Meditation is actually hard, and it takes a lot of work to be able to sit and actually recognize thoughts. This is a great source of calm for anyone stressed that they haven’t figured out the secret.
Meditations by Marcus Aurelius
Okay, it’s not a meditation book per se, but it is full of great stoic wisdom that you can apply to meditations! One of my favorite stoics, Marcus Aurelius really challenges you to think on things and encourages you to live a better life. It’s a philosophical reflection that leaves you with some really awesome self-improvement mindsets and changes your perspectives.
Minimalism and Simple Living
Minimalism: Live a Meaningful Life and Essential by The Minimalists
If you want to start your minimalist journey, you have to start here. Simplifying your life is just one path to changing your future. The Minimalists take us into their lives and what it meant to clear their excess to make room for… the essential. In the second book, you get a collection of really great and thought provoking essays that go above and beyond what they have over on their website. You really start to question your stance on topics you used to take for granted.
The Power of Less by Leo Babauta
This was the kick in the butt I needed to get my productivity and life goals in order. I have grand plans and ideas so this resource was perfect timing. The foundation of my prioritization habits, this book helps you get clear on your goals and actually gives you the push to start them! You can change with action.
Some Thoughts About Relationships by Colin Wright
How much thought have you given into any relationship you have – romantic or platonic? Have you ever taken a minimalistic approach to them or thought rules would help the exchange? Trust me, this book is life changing. I’ve found so much more value in my relationships with friends, family, and my partner.
Creativity and Writing
Troubleshooting Your Novel by Steven James
This is the ultimate writing toolbox all in one. This is great for plotting OR editing your novel, especially if you’re doing it yourself. You get ideas of what to look out for in your writing, finding plot holes, building twists, and more. I have this guy highlighted with sticky notes on every page. It’s seriously the greatest resource I’ve ever touched and the worn cover is proof.
No Plot? No Problem by Chris Baty
Whether you’re into National Novel Writing Month or not, if you’re a beginner writer and want someone to talk you through all your crazy thoughts, this is what you need to be reading. While it’s geared to writing a novel in 30 days (totally doable, by the way. I’ve done it three times), it’s an awesome book to read when you get overwhelmed by the process. You’ll get help on overcoming obstacles and getting through the story. Remember, you can’t edit a blank page. This book will help you get your words out.
Steal Like an Artist by Austin Kleon
You are an original, and no one makes you feel better about that than Austin Kleon. Creativity is for everyone, and even if you don’t feel like one right now, you will after reading this. It’s a great tool to get you out of a funk and help you build more creativity in your life. Then, you take it a step further with Show Your Work! so you can get noticed and take advantage of your beautiful creative life.
Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke
I’m still not a poet, but it’s fun sometimes to pretend. Luckily, this book isn’t just for young poets. Rilke’s letters are absolutely beautiful and so inspiring for any type of writing career. If you ever question your passion of writing in any genre or style, please read this. It will absolutely change your life.
What are your favorite books in these categories? Which ones have been life changing? Share!