If you love reading as much as I do, then you’re probably (like me) constantly on the hunt for the next good book. Enter these five books: Over the years, I’ve read some amazing, inspirational books, but these stand out as the very best. With subjects ranging from mindfulness to self-compassion to working through this messy, human life, these are my top five recommendations for books to read right now.
A deep and intense read; this isn’t something you can breeze through on a trip to the beach. It’s a book that requires the reader to invest attention and energy into the lofty ideas Eckhart Tolle presents about human life. Touching on everything from how we transmit energy to those around us (both good and bad) to releasing ourselves from the drive of our ego, this book encourages the reader to contemplate deeply personal questions about how well you are living your life. We learn that there is always the chance for great transformation, and that, through this, we can find our highest potential and fulfillment.
Before becoming the worldwide-known author of the amazing novel “Wild”, Cheryl Strayed answered people’s life and relationship questions under the pseudonym Dear Sugar. This book is a compilation of her favorite questions from readers going through everything from divorce to infidelity to self-realization to death of a loved one. Her advice is sweet, nurturing, and always compassionate. I fell in love with her view on how to approach the world with love, making sure you’re the first person you focus that kindness on. Her words to those in need will inspire you—and also probably make you tear up a little from just how relatable the human experience can be.
Ana Forrest is a fierce, wise, and powerful woman and yogini, and her life story is just as intense as you’d expect it to be. This book is a mix of autobiography and presentation of methods she uses within Forrest Yoga, sprinted with bits of with meditation and self-inquiry exercises for the reader to try on their own. The story of her incredibly rough childhood, the path she forged to find yoga and everything in between will leave a reader amazed by her strength and resilience. A powerful and moving story—great for yoga teachers and students alike.
Self-compassion guru Pema Chodron’s books almost always focus on diving deep to find that well of love for ourselves. Her voice is gentle and loving, and her writing style is simple, but moving. This is her most popular book, and a good introduction to her narratives on present-moment awareness, self-love—and how we can all live a life filled with kindness. Probably my favorite book to recommend to anyone looking for a quick pick-me-up of the soul.
Brown is as much for her work as a researcher in vulnerability as she is her incredible story-telling skills. (You need to watch her TED talks!) This book is a compilation of her richest research on vulnerability, and the struggles we face in opening up to others. She humanizes our fears around being hurt or judged if we choose to live authentically, and makes an unshakeable case towards how vulnerability will always benefit us, even if the journey to get there feels like a constant uphill battle. Beautiful and so very relatable, Brown’s voice is simple, informative, and witty.
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