I’m never going to be a 52 in 52 girl. While I consume A LOT of written content in a day, sitting down to read a book typically doesn’t get worked into my schedule. However, I’ve always got a personal development book or two in the queue and, throughout all of those I’ve read, there are a few that I refer to over and over and over again — seriously, I think all three of these books have appeared on the blog numerous times before, just not in a round up this way.
These are books that are perfect to read anytime of year but particularly at the beginning of the year when you’re thinking about how to get your life in order and how to achieve the goals that you’ve set forth. I’ve taken notes, written down quotes, and changed the way I approach everything from career to organization to creativity because of the nuggets I’ve learned within these pages.
So, without further ado, let’s get into the best books to get your life organized and inspired.
The Best Books to Get Your Life Organized and Inspired
Big Magic | Elizabeth Gilbert: This book on creativity carries one super important lesson — you don’t need to create for any reason beyond creating. I’ve always lived by this rule and it’s exactly why I have canvases that have been painted over again and again. Creating something isn’t necessarily about an end product, it’s about the enjoyment you get out of it in the moment. One of the first stories she tells in the book is about a woman who takes up ice skating. Clearly she’s not Olympic bound but it’s something she loves, so she does it. That’s how we should all live our lives. Bonus: Elizabeth Gilbert was on the Bad on Paper podcast this week! She’s so refreshing, I can’t get enough of listening to her chat about her creative journey.
Better Than Before | Gretchen Rubin: I could seriously list all of Gretchen Rubin’s books here. From The Happiness Project to The Four Tendencies to Happier at Home, everything she writes resonates so deeply with me as a Type A upholder. However, Better Than Before is the book I chose to read in January of this year as I focused on how I wanted to create a plan for achieving my 2021 goals. She discusses topics that seem so obvious yet we don’t often apply them to our own lives, from recognizing that orderly spaces can contribute to a sense of calm (yes, even drawers and closets) to acknowledging that sometimes the worst type of procrastination is procrastinating work with work (how many of you have drowned yourselves in busy work rather than tackling the large project at hand?). This book sets a framework for how to create realistic habits in a way that works for the way you function and how to keep them.
You Are A Badass Every Day | Jen Sincero: I picked this book up on a whim in an airport after hearing about Jen Sincero’s You Are A Badass series for a few years. I’ll be honest, for those who don’t respond well to a tough love approach, she’s probably not for you. But, if you’re someone who can’t stand excuses and would rather someone just tell it like it is, you’ll totally get into Jen Sincero’s motivational, pump you up vibe (it’s got a bit of the “you’re the only one standing in your own way” mentality of a certain R. Hollis, but without the condescending MLM-adjacent feeling). She motivates you to think about what’s holding you back in your career, in money, and in life, plus, how you can reconfigure your thinking going forward. It’s a super easy read, not a well-researched narrative like the other two books — that could be a positive or negative depending on what you’re looking for.
So, have you read any of these books? Thoughts? Are there other books along the same lines that you would recommend?