I'll admit that I used to feel embarrassed about reading books under the category of self-development or spirituality. After all, not many of my friends (at the time) seemed to feel the same need to read this kind of material.
However I now realise that it's not a bad thing at all. To want to better myself and to be more self-aware can only be a good thing right? I'm not saying this to sound like 'I'm more in touch with myself than you are because I've ready XY or Z' but because I think there's a kind of stigma around self-development books which I predict will have disappeared within the next ten years. People are only just cottoning onto the benefits of meditation after all. I really do hope that when I have kids one day, they'll be teaching the things that really matter in life. Like how to know their self-worth, how to manage finances properly, how to listen to their intuition when making important decisions, how to stay in their own lane. I could go on and on!
I guess some people will go through life being very successful - depending on what you define as success - without having to do the inner work. I'm not quite sure if I feel better or worse for knowing that I have control over my life circumstances and the way I feel, or if I'd be happier plodding along none the wiser.
To reference Oprah Winfrey's book, what I know for sure is that I love love love reading inspiring material by authors who are changing the way people view the world. From learning about how our minds can heal chronic illness to how habits are wired in our brains. Being on this journey of investing in myself and learning how to be a better person in the world every day is what keeps me motivated and inspired each morning when I wake up. No matter what I'm doing, I ask myself 'what's the most fun way I can do this?' and options open up.
I've always loved reading. Even from a very young age you'd find me with a book in my hand everywhere I went. I was obsessed with The BFG and Harry Potter. There was something so magical about them and the stories still feel very real to me. I somewhat lost my love of fiction after doing my degree in English. Holding a new book didn't give me the same excitement it once had. It felt more like a chore than anything else. 'Why does each sentence have to have a hidden meaning?!' I would question. What if the author was just writing for the sake of writing? I started reading books that were more relevant to my life and developed my self-awareness.
If I'm honest, blogging can sometimes feel a bit like a chore at times. A lot of people promote 'adding value' to readers but sometimes I just want to write what I want to write! Like take this post for example, there isn't much structure to it (sorry about that) but I trust that people will take from it what they need to.
So I say write for the fun of it, take photos on Instagram for the fun of it, create things you love, not only to get a certain outcome. And most importantly, live for the joy of it.
If you want to find out my book recommendations, you can download the reading list I created just for you here.