Read these books to support a new year’s resolution or a change you want to make anytime of year. I read books to encourage simplicity, sobriety, anti-racism, boundaries, health and entrepreneurship because those things are important to me.
Whenever I’m making a change in my life, I intentionally surround myself with support and encouragement for what I’m working on. From books, to podcasts and who I follow on social media, I create an environment where change can thrive.
These books, whether writing or reading them made a difference in my life and I believe they will make a difference in your life too.
10 Books To Encourage Simplicity, Sobriety, Anti-Racism and Boundaries
1. Soulful Simplicity: I wrote this book! Soulful Simplicity is the story of how I used my multiple sclerosis diagnosis as a catalyst for change, and how simplicity was the heart of every tiny step I took. You can learn more, download a sample chapter and even order signed copies here.
2. We Are The Luckiest by Laura McKowen.
This heart-breaking, heart-warming book is a must read if you are curious about drinking less. McKowen addresses issues such as facing facts, the question of AA, and other people’s drinking. Without sugarcoating the struggles of sobriety, she relentlessly emphasizes the many blessings of an honest life, one without secrets and debilitating shame.
3. So, You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo.
This book helped me to better understand and be more aware of white privilege, race, and racism. In So You Want to Talk About Race, Ijeoma Oluo guides readers of all races through subjects ranging from intersectionality and affirmative action to “model minorities” in an attempt to make the seemingly impossible possible: honest conversations about race and racism, and how they infect almost every aspect of American life.
4. Big Friendship by Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedman.
After reading this, I wanted to call all of my best girlfriends and tell them how much they mean to me. An inspiring and entertaining testament to the power of society’s most underappreciated relationship, Big Friendship will invite you to think about how your own bonds are formed, challenged, and preserved. It is a call to value your friendships in all of their complexity. Actively choose them. And, sometimes, fight for them.
5. The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron.
I experienced the biggest shifts in my life, work and overall creativity thanks to this book. It’s one of the few books I still own. Julia Cameron’s novel approach guides readers in uncovering problems areas and pressure points that may be restricting their creative flow and offers techniques to free up any areas where they might be stuck, opening up opportunities for self-growth and self-discovery.
6. Loving What Is by Byron Katie.
“The Work” is simply four questions that, when applied to a specific problem, enable you to see what is troubling you in an entirely different light. As Katie says, “It’s not the problem that causes our suffering; it’s our thinking about the problem.” Contrary to popular belief, trying to let go of a painful thought never works; instead, once we have done The Work, the thought lets go of us. At that point, we can truly love what is, just as it is.
7. Untamed by Glennon Doyle.
I never want Glennon Doyle books to end which I believe to be the highest compliment you can give a book. Soulful and uproarious, forceful and tender, Untamed is both an intimate memoir and a galvanizing wake-up call. It is the story of how one woman learned that a responsible mother is not one who slowly dies for her children, but one who shows them how to fully live.
It is the story of navigating divorce, forming a new blended family, and discovering that the brokenness or wholeness of a family depends not on its structure but on each member’s ability to bring her full self to the table. And it is the story of how each of us can begin to trust ourselves enough to set boundaries, make peace with our bodies, honor our anger and heartbreak, and unleash our truest, wildest instincts so that we become women who can finally look at ourselves and say: There She Is.
Untamed shows us how to be brave. As Glennon insists: The braver we are, the luckier we get.
8. Sabbath by Wayne Muller. This isn’t the first time I’ve recommended this book and it won’t be the last. This book shows us how to find rest, renewal and delight in our busy lives. I’ve quoted it in my books and it always encourages me to take a deep breath and slow down.
We need not even schedule an entire day each week. Sabbath time can be a Sabbath afternoon, a Sabbath hour, a Sabbath walk. With wonderful stories, poems, and suggestions for practice, Muller teaches us how we can use this time of sacred rest to refresh our bodies and minds, restore our creativity, and regain our birthright of inner happiness.
9. Set Boundaries, Find Peace by Nedra Glover Tawwab.
I follow Nedra on Instagram and have no doubt that this book will, as the subtitle promises, help us reclaim ourselves.
Set Boundaries, Find Peace presents simple-yet-powerful ways to establish healthy boundaries in all aspects of life. Rooted in the latest research and best practices used in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), these techniques help us identify and express our needs clearly and without apology–and unravel a root problem behind codependency, power struggles, anxiety, depression, burnout, and more.
10. Project 333. Yep! I wrote this one too. If you want to create space, time and other precious resources in your closet and every other area of your life, this book and challenge are ready to help. Once we finally release ourselves from the cyclical nature of consumerism and focus less on our shoes and more on our self-care, we not only look great we feel great– and we can see a clear path to make other important changes in our lives that reach far beyond our closets.
With tips, solutions, and a closet-full of inspiration, this life-changing minimalist manual shows readers that we are so much more than what we wear, and that who we are and what we have is so much more than enough.
Read these books for encouragement, inspiration and practical ideas to help you make powerful changes in your life.