By now you’re probably waist deep in resolutions you set on January 1st. Perhaps you made resolutions ranging from no negative self-talk to don’t hit the snooze button. If you’re anything like a vast majority of people, you may have set a goal to read more in 2017.
Here’s five books that are guaranteed to set up your year for success. We’ve included literature ranging from self help to fiction that is bound to leave you up at night flipping through pages and then strategizing on how you’re going to be a new woman (or man) by December 31st.
1. The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. A classic for those navigating through this journey called life. The Alchemist is comparable to The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry but for an older audience.
Unlike the other books on this list, The Alchemist, doesn’t fall under the self-help category and is fiction. However, the lessons Coelho tells through the story of a young man searching for treasure will leave you reading, rereading, and then reflecting on the gems you’ve been looking for. In the book Coelho writes: “…when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.” It’s a personal motto, and hopefully after reading this book you’ll find yours too.
2. Strengths Finder 2.0 by Tom Rath. It never hurts to understand and take advantage of your strengths. My boss handed everyone in our department this book at the end of 2016. My initial thought was “does she think I have that many things to improve?!” However, after I started reading, I realized she saw potential in my strengths and wanted me to use them to my advantage in the workplace.
With that being said, I’m (virtually) handing you this book so you can do the same. Just imagine the things you can achieve when you focus on what you can do and not what you can’t do. Each book also includes a code to the StrengthsFinder website that grants you access to a questionnaire giving you personalized results on your strengths. It’s like having your own little life coach in the form of a book.
3. You Are a Badass: How To Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life by Jen Sincero . I’m currently reading this book and it’s amazing. Unlike most self-help books that easily get preachy and boring, Sincero uses narratives to get her point across. This book is extremely relatable with antidotes depicting awkward yoga classes to self sabotaging relationships that we’ve all experienced or can relate to.
Sincero also gives her readers simple tips that are easy to do every day without feeling like a chore. One of my favorite tips in this book involves choosing an uplifting phrase and repeating it 10 times when you wake up and 10 times before bed. After you tell yourself you’re a flawless superstar who is loved with a bright future 20 times a day, your mind has no choice but to accept it.
4. The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin. Rubin starts her book in a place that most of us have been. Wake up. Go to work. Go home. Sleep. The Happiness Project challenges readers to change an entire year of their lives, breaking down the year into monthly goals. For example, January’s challenge is to “Boost Energy” while February ,fittingly, pushes readers to “Remember Love.”
If you’re looking for some rejuvenation this year and need a self-help book that will keep you on track month by month, this book is a great place to start.
5. I Almost Forgot About You by Terry McMillan. Sure, I’ve read every single Terry McMillan book. And yes, the Waiting to Exhale soundtrack is on constant repeat in my head. But that doesn’t take away from the fact that this book is a necessity for 2017. This book probably won’t make you think about the depths of the universe or how your middle school bully scared you for life, but sometimes we need a good fun read.
I Almost Forgot About You is about a women reexamining her past relationships after she discovers an ex has died. Noble right? If you’ve ever read McMillian’s books before, you’re no stranger to her ability to captivate, motivate, and leave you in a room for 5 hours laughing and crying all by yourself. This book is a great way to self-examine and evaluate events that shape our own personal growth. A necessity for 2017.
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