Stand Sure In Life
My Top Ten Inspirational Books
Over the next three weeks I’ll be counting down my top ten books, movies and songs. The criterion will be that they will be inspirational, uplifting, and helpful. This week I’m doing books!
The Power Of Positive Thinking - Norman Vincent Peale
This book was given to me by a former boss of mine. Although it’s perhaps a little dated now, it is still largely relevant. It is packed with sound advice and guidance. Using Bible quotes and anecdotal evidence Dr Peale truly does help you to think positively. Even if you’re not religious or Christian you can still get a lot from it.
Notes From A Friend - Anthony Robbins
This is a little hand book that has key points from two of his other books (which are mentioned in this blog). It’s a good size to take away on holiday and is very easy to understand. It’s full of great guidance and exercises you can do. Anthony Robbins has really made his mark in the Coaching industry as he has worked non stop for the last 40+ years.
The Magic Of Thinking Big - David J Schwartz
The only issue I have with this book is its title. It’s not magic! It’s practical advice and excellent food for thought. The bigger you can think - the bigger your results. Again some of the principals in this are a little dated, but as with Norman Vincent Peale’s book, there is a lot to be gained from it. My copy is full of highlights as there are bits that I wanted to refer to again and again.
Aesop’s Fables - Aesop
Aesop, a Greek philosopher and story teller was born about 620 years before Christ. His stories are well written and are largely relatable. A lot of the stories have moral guidance but even if you ignore that - you’re still getting cracking yarns! For me I’m always up for something that’s going to make me think.
Unlimited Power and Awaken The Giant Within - Anthony Robbins
This is a double whammy. Both of these books have taught me so much. Unlimited Power is best described as an introduction to NLP. It has some great exercises to do and really does make you think. Awaken The Giant Within is a rather large tome, but again is packed with information. It takes what is learnt in Unlimited Power and develops it.
The Power Of Now - Eckhart Tolle
This man influences me as, like me, he doesn’t identify with any religion but uses teachings from many areas including Zen Buddhism and The Bible. This book emphasises the importance of living in the present moment. It’s a guide for day-to-day living and really does give one food for thought.
The Shack - WM Young
This is one of two books to ever make me cry. Hardline Christian’s don’t like it because they feel it’s dumbing their faith down…they also accuse it of being heretic. For me it actually goes a long way to explain what I believe God (in whatever guise God appears) wants from us...namely a relationship. I first read this book when I had decided that Christianity wasn’t giving me the answers I needed. This didn’t pull me back to Christianity, but it did open my eyes to a whole world out there.
The Art Of Happiness - HH Dalai Lama
This was the first book I’d read by the Dalai Lama. A psychiatrist, Howard Cutler, interviewed the Dalai Lama. Cutler quotes the Dalai Lama almost verbatim and provides context and details of the settings in which the interviews took place. It really is a handbook for living and it explores training the human outlook that alters perception. It really does encourage you to think that the purpose of life is happiness and that happiness is determined more by the state of mind, rather than the circumstances one finds oneself in. It’s a philosophical book that really influenced my thought processes.
The Book Of Joy
Archbishop Desmond Tutu and HH Dalai Lama
This book came to my attention when I was scrolling through Social Media and I saw a video of Desmond Tutu and the Dalai Lama. They were in stitches! It was an advert (infomercial) for a new book called The Book Of Joy. I just knew that I had to have it as I’d admired both men for quite some time. It was given to me as a gift one Christmas and I read it one sitting - only one other book has ever done that to me! Both men are being interviewed by Douglas Adams, so there is a lot build up and background to the interviews, which took place over a week. Both men discuss their beliefs, their attitudes and throughout the book is a very clear indication that they have a deep, respectful, honourable love for one another. The second part of the book has practical exercises you can do to help make your life Joyful. It really is a joy to read.
The Red Tree - Shaun Tan
This book really needs to be number one because it is what opened my eyes that I needed to be a formal life coach. I’ve been coaching in one form or another for many, many years; but upon reading this book I realised what I needed to be doing! Since reading that book back in 2010 everything has been building up to me becoming a Life Coach - and I’m now here. It’s best described as a picture book with words. The pictures are the key thing. Every picture there is a red leaf to find. Every page has a short piece of text. I tell the story of how the Red Tree inspired me to become a life coach. Read the story here. The art work is brilliant and you spot something new each time you look at it. Being the size of an LP the book doesn’t sit comfortably on the bookshelf, but it’s perfect for the coffee table.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this little count down of books that inspired or uplifted me. Next week it’s Films!