I once read a quote that a person who doesn’t like to read isn’t any different from someone who doesn’t know how to read. Reading has always been one of my favorite alone time activities. Compared to movies or TV, imagining what the author’s vision for the story is much more stimulating for me than just watching it. That’s why I agreed to work part time in the public library as an assistant even at a minimum wage! That’s how much I love books that I’m so willing to be surrounded by them all the time!
When I was a lot younger, I loved reading fiction as a form of escape from reality. But in my 30s, I’ve been obsessed with non-fiction, particularly self-help that have that witty kick to it. I like putting a book down smiling at the thought that I learned a new psychological or emotional tool to equip me better at dealing with life.
Below are my top picks as far as non-fiction is concerned. And they’re usually out in the library too which means they’re hot commodities!
1) ”The Subtle Art About Not Giving A F*ck” by Mark Manson
The title sounds a bit crass but the content of this book changed my life forever! The author wrote it with so much directness that it’s impossible not to say out loud, “On point!” on certain lines. If you have people pleasing tendencies or having a hard time finding your identity in a society that constantly judges you when you want to express your true self, this book will yank you out of that fear. It pushes you to be true to who you are with no holds barred. Because either way, you conform or you don’t, you get judged anyway. So might as well live your truth! Couldn’t put this book down when I opened it. It’ll really make you not give a f*ck about what others think and it’s liberating! The quote that stayed with me is, “This is the most simple and basic component of life: our struggles determine our successes.”
2) “Becoming” by Michelle Obama
I’m a fan of Michelle Obama. I see her as this strong, intelligent woman who worked hard to get the privilege she deserves. Her assertiveness and articulacy showed effortlessly as she took on the role as the former First Lady of America. Reading her story will inspire you to keep moving forward in achieving your life goals and not allow race, skin color or status to hinder you from doing so. With all the setbacks she experienced, the racism she had to deal with along with the criticisms and pressures as the former president‘s wife, her memoir is one solid proof that success favors the bold, smart and persevering. I’m inspired to write my own memoir just by reading her incredible journey to success. One of the most powerful quotes I loved in this book is, “I wasn’t going to let one person’s opinion dislodge everything I thought I knew about myself.”
3) “Tribe Of Mentors” by Tim Ferris
Ironically, as an inspirational blogger, I’m the kind of person who constantly needs to hear words of encouragement or motivation. If I don’t maintain my mental tune up, I get plague with self-doubts that will paralyze me from uplifting other people. This book has everything a self-sufficient achiever can ever ask for. It has powerful quotes and tips from super successful people, their stories of failures at the initial stages of their empires, health habits that they cultivate and practical life advices. The book is a thick one and it can get redundant at times because the questions are the same for each interviewee. But it’s worth reading if you need a great pep talk to push you at greater heights. This book will equip you for the competitive world out there. The quote that hit home for my case is, "Not dead, can't quit" by Kyle Maynard.
4) “The Power Of NOW” by Eckhart Tolle
The title sounded cliche at first but when I read it, I was indeed enlightened. The author will bring you to a place of stillness and contentment as you fully become aware of being in the NOW through mindfulness and meditation. It speaks about joyfully soaking in your very present moment with joy and gratitude as you let the past melt away and get unattached to the results of your future. The book also foresaw the possible questions and doubts that could cross your mind so it was written and addressed by the author. There are certain chapters towards the end that got me yawning but overall, it‘s still a great read to be reminded of how great life can be if you practice mindfulness. The quote in this book that I kept repeating to myself when I feel discouraged in life is, "Power over others is weakness disguised as strength. True power is within and it is available to you now.”
5) “Big Magic” by Elizabeth Gilbert
This book eradicated my perfectly crafted excuses why I should just stop living the creative life. The author has the most accurate rebuttals for each of them. She just knows how to push you to keep creating the art that you’ve been meaning to create regardless of your worst inner self-critic or possible judgments from others. I could be biased as Miss Gilbert has always been one of my favorite authors but this one is a must-read for every creative soul out there dying to come out. My favorite line from the entire book? “And what if people absolutely hate what you've created? What if people attack you with savage vitriol, and insult your intelligence, and malign your motives, and drag your good name through the mud? Just smile sweetly and suggest - as politely as you possibly can - that they go make their own fucking art. Then stubbornly continue making yours.”
How about you? What are your favorite non-fiction reads at the moment especially during this self-quarantine period? :)
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