3 Books that Changed My Life
When my grief was fresh and intense, something strange happened. I, who am a voracious reader, just could not bear to read fiction. The characters and plots seemed trite. And I didn’t particularly care. My life was hellish and no convoluted plot or character twist could match the reality of what was going on with me.
The books that my soul felt nourished by were 1) memoirs 2) spiritual/self-help. The stories of real people who were living real lives, finding the courage to plough through some serious stuff, and get back on their feet inspired me. It was also a time when I was seeking, learning, growing. Many, many books served as my guides during that tumultuous time in my life. But there are three that stand out as truly special signposts.
A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose by Eckhart Tolle
This book was THE FIRST book that started me on my journey. I read it like it was a thriller! My mother’s death had me questioning, examining, and reevaluating everything. Tolle’s book was chock full of ideas on why I needed to live a spirit-driven life, not an ego-directed one. I’d been living a life primarily feeding the demands of my ego and reading this book was a wake-up call for me. In particular, his definition of the “pain-body” was very useful for me to understand the stories and emotions I’d been carrying for a lifetime. I also learned about the power of the present moment, a constant theme in Tolle’s books. If you’re feeling weighed down by life’s struggles and are looking for ways to live a life guided by your higher consciousness, this book is for you.
The Shift: Taking Your Life from Ambition to Meaning by Wayne Dyer
This book was a game-changer for me. Dyer, one of my all-time favorite authors, draws our attention to the question of what matters in the morning of our lives and the evening of our lives. Once we’ve obeyed the dictates of our ego, we move into a phase of life where we seek more meaning. We want to find our purpose. My mother’s death had opened me up to these life-changing questions. And so I was ready for this book, as ready as I’ve ever been. Dyer explores the themes of our oneness with Spirit, why we came here, and what we can do to live a life of meaning and joy. This book is one I return to again and again. It’s my life-refresher. If you’re stuck in a dead-end job and feel a divine nudge to reboot your life with what you came here to do, this book will speak to your heart.
Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life: Living the Wisdom of the Tao by Wayne Dyer
This book structured as a series of 81 short essays is one of my favorite reads. This is Dyer’s interpretation of the Tao Te Ching, the wisdom of Lao-Tzu an ancient Chinese philosopher, and its adaptation to modern living. You can open the book at any page and read the essay. It will likely have some ideas on what you can change in the challenges that haunt you. Or you can read the book in a linear fashion. Either way, the short essays are a perfect way to start the day. Every time I read this book, my understanding of these spiritual concepts deepens. I love this book because it teaches me to surrender and trust the divine perfection in everything. I need this reminder because it helps me stay grounded when my day can easily be consumed by a trivial tech challenge or a stubborn need to be right. If you’d like the big-picture view of life, savor this book. One essay at a time.
What are some of your favorite reads? I’d love to add them to my list.
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