I’m SUCH a bookworm! (*major nerd alert) I have been ever since I was really young. As a child, during summer vacations my grandma used to take me to the public library almost every other day to get a new book to read (I also had friends I swear I just really liked reading hahaha)
I love detective and spy novels, some fiction and for the past years also inspiration books. Well, these days self-improvement isn’t a dirty word anymore. We all want to be happier, live better lives and we are not afraid to admit it. Sometimes, we just need some inspiration…
People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily. Zig Ziglar
Yep. Motivation doesn’t last. Just like gaining those extra pounds when not going to the gym, your happiness muscle will loosen up if not practiced. Your thoughts create your feelings which create your actions which end up creating your life. If you want to be happier, then you need to change your thoughts first. Undeniably, A great way to get some new food-for-thought is books.
Sow a thought, reap an action; sow an action, reap a habit; sow a habit, reap a character; sow a character, reap a destiny | Stephen R. Covey, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
I think books, and inspiration in general, are super personal. Like art. Or coffee. Some like long exploratory books, some like short and concise, others will just read a blog post about the subject and some get their inspiration from a podcast on their way to work.
There are soooo many books out there. You can’t read them all. You shouldn’t read them all. Just find the book or concept you can relate to. Plus, learn to take what you need from each one. Just the gist. No need to become an expert on the subject (unless you want to start an inspiration blog – Then yes, definitely read everything. twice)
It isn’t what you have or who you are or where you are or what you are doing that makes you happy or unhappy. It is what you think about it | Dale Carnegie
Hope you’ll try some and could relate. Getting some inspiration before you go to bed or on your next vacation (planting those positive seeds in) can’t hurt so why not try?
Yes, I know I’m about 20 years behind on this one but WOW! Best book I’ve read all year. This book tells the ‘story of Julian Mantle, a lawyer forced to confront the spiritual crisis of his out-of-balance life, and the subsequent wisdom that he gains that enables him to create a life of passion, purpose, and peace’.
I was already familiar with most of the concepts there (in one way or the other) but the way Sharma puts it all together did the trick for me. A lot of us could relate to an unbalanced overworked way of life and the desire to make small but meaningful changes to it.
The book provides a step-by-step approach to living with greater courage, balance, abundance, and joy. The advice he gives is quite easy to implement and really makes you think things through.
You’ve probably already heard the hype about this one by now. I got to tell you – It’s all true. Manson tries to shift your mindset to one that will make you happier and does it in his own funny and care-free way of writing. He makes you relate to what he says and of course – stop giving a f***. In the book, he encourages you to choose what you care about. These values become your metrics by which you can determine whether you’re succeeding (and not by what society says).
Manson is definitely not your standard self-help all-successful guru nor does he tries to be. He is totally keeping it real and that’s his beauty. No bullshit with this one – he will show you how to stop trying to be “positive” all the time so that you can actually become happier.
This one is definitely going on my “reread list”.
Marci Shimoff presents her theory that people can be happy for no reason. Sounds good right? She actually offers a breakthrough approach to being happy. Incorporating the latest findings in positive psychology, powerful tools, and tech¬niques, and moving real-life stories, this life-changing 7-step program will raise your “happiness set-point.”
Her theory, in a nutshell, says that: People have a basic happiness set-point that defines their general level of happiness. Although people’s happiness levels may raise and lower in response to specific life events, people will return to their set-point. Set-points can be raised through changing perspective and practicing happiness.
No conceptual mambo-jumbo for Shimoff. She has a really refreshing practical, well-researched point of view on happiness which I liked a lot.
Unlike other happiness experts that encourage you to find the things that make you happy, and do more of those (which is a solid good advice), ‘Happy for No Reason’ takes a different approach. It teaches you different methods to consistently experience the long-lasting happiness that’s beyond reasons. Just because.
Based on ancient Toltec wisdom, the book offers a powerful code of conduct that can rapidly transform our lives to a new experience of freedom, true happiness, and love. The main topic is self-limiting beliefs. Whether we’re consciously aware of it or not, there are more than likely several ways we’re all limiting ourselves and robbing ourselves of joy.
I know some (A LOT of) people that swears by this book, saying it change their life completely. I have to say I can’t really relate to that feeling, unfortunately. The book is interesting and offers another perspective on happiness but I must say my life before and after it remained pretty much the same. It’s super easy to read (you can finish it in a day) so why not? It might be your cup of tea and change your life completely…
Can You Learn to Be Happy? According to the teacher of Harvard University’s most popular and life-changing course you can. And this book allows you to take part of his course and learn how positive psychology enables you to live happily right here and now.
The book combines scientific studies, research, self-help advice, and spiritual enlightenment into a set of principles you can apply in order to learn how to be happier.
It’s less theoretical and more like a guidebook. It has practical advice and exercises that help you turn thoughts into actions. For me, it makes it a bit harder to read but if you’re not looking for stories and quick fix solutions and really ready to put in the work and improve your thought then it’s definitely the book for you.
O.K. I know it isn’t your “traditional” happiness/inspiration kind of book but it’s one of my all-time favorites. I’ve reread it a couple of time during my life and each time it puts a smile on my face. The simplicity of the Taoism philosophy put together with Winnie-the-Pooh’s adorableness just wins me over each time.
This book is an introduction to the Eastern belief system of Taoism for Westerners. It allegorically employs the fictional characters of A. A. Milne’s Winnie-the-Pooh stories to explain the basic principles of philosophical Taoism. Winnie-the-Pooh himself, for example, personifies the principles of Wei Wu Wei, the Taoist concept of “effortless doing,” and Pu, the concept of being open to but unburdened by experience.
Pooh in his charming, life just “is”, kind of way makes you really stop and think. And then just be. If you’re looking for a casual, fun light reading for your next vacation this is the book for you.
Looking for more happiness blog posts? Check out my ‘Happy mind’ page.
In conclusion, there are so many happiness books out there. I do recommend reading some, experimenting a little with different approaches to happiness and finding the one that works best for you. Just remember, being inspired by other people is great but don’t get too caught up with reading that you’ll forget to just BE happy. You can read a million recipes and still not have a cake. Action is a must here.
Have a great book recommendation? Please share in the comment below – I love learning about new books I haven’t read yet