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15 Self Help Books To Make You Live A Greater Life

15 Self Help Books To Make You Live A Greater Life

“A good book is an education of the heart. It enlarges your sense of human possibility what human nature is of what happens in the world. It’s a creator of inwardness.” Susan Sontag

To embark on a journey to live a great life is a courageous and life long journey. It is very difficult to do it alone and if you don’t have help, the chances of you reaching your goal to live a great life is virtually impossible.

Self Help books are the best way for you to get the knowledge, information, tools and strategies to guide and support you to achieving your goal to live a great life.

These 15 Self Help Books have changed millions of peoples lives and they can help you change your life too, so that you can live the life you desire.

1. Awaken The Giant Within – Anthony Robbins

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Anthony Robbins

    “in life, lots of people know what to do, but few people actually do what they know.” Anthony Robbins

    This book is the “bible for personal development”. The main message from the book is, that we have the power right now to control how we think, how we feel, and what we do. Anything we want or desire in our life, we have the power to achieve it.

    You hold within you the power and the energy force to achieve all of your dreams – hence the title of the book “Awaken the Giant Within”.

    2. Finding Your Own North Star – Martha Beck

    ““No one but you has the ability to find your own North Star and no one but you has the power to keep you from finding it. No one”

    Martha Beck

    North Star

      Your North Star is about you finding your passion and purpose in life. The tools and strategies are practical and uncomplicated. Martha Beck takes you through some very simple and effective processes  that will give you clarity and a better understanding of how to deal with internal conflict, internal dialogue and the feelings of unhappiness, discontent and dissatisfaction in your life.

      3. Mojo: How To Get It How To Keep It How To Get It Back If You Lose It – Marshall Goldsmith

      “Mojo” is, “That positive spirit toward what we are doing now, that starts from the inside and radiates to the outside”  Marshall Goldsmith

      Mojo

        I found my MOJO when I read this book. Marshall Goldsmith, for me, did exactly what the title says – he guided me through practical steps and provided me with tools and strategies that helped me get my mojo back.

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        Marshall Goldsmith defines Mojo as “the moment when we do something that’s purposeful, powerful and positive and rest of the world recognises it”.  A must read book that will change your life as it did mine.

        4. What Should I Do With My Life? – Po Bronson

        “I learned that it was in hard times that people usually changed the course of their life; in good times, they frequently only talked about change. Hard times forced them to overcome the doubts that normally gave them pause.It surprised me how often we hold ourselves back until we have no choice.”  Po Bronson

        Po Bronson

          This book is not going to give you the five steps to finding your Life Purpose or to living a greater life. It does not give you any tools or strategies to help you answer all those questions about life that are swirling around in your head.

          This book will provide you with a reality check as to how tough and complicated it can be when you decide to change your career and your life. It is an inspirational book as it is based on the true stories of ordinary people who made a decision and took action to answer the question “what should I do with my life?” There are no famous peoples’ stories in this book,  just ordinary people doing extraordinary things.

          5. The Magic of Thinking Big: Dr David J Schwartz PhD

          “Think you are weak, think you lack what it takes, think you will lose, think you are second class – think this way and you are doomed to mediocrity.”  Dr David J Schwartz

          Magic of Thinking BIg

            This book is an oldie and a classic. According to Dr Schwartz, to create change in your life and to attain all that you desire the key thing you need to do is, change your thinking and your attitude.

            The other key message from this book is, you must start preparing your mind and your thinking for the journey of personal change. If you are going to run a marathon, you need to train and get your body in shape. This is the same concept for taking on the challenge of personal change. If you want to chase your dreams you need to train your mind to dream big.

            6. The Art of Happiness A Handbook For Living – Dalai Lama

            “happiness is determined more by one’s state of mind than by external events.” Dalai Lama

            Dalai Lama

              There is not a person I know who is not in the pursuit of happiness. The Art of Happiness is a book that does not give you the answers you seek as to how you can live a happy and prosperous life. What the book does however do, is it introduces you to Buddhist teachings and the wisdom of the Dalai Lama, who lives a life that is content, happy, and spiritually fulfilled. There is no better way to learn about how to get happiness and fulfilment than from someone who is actually practising what they teach.

              The Art of Happiness is a book that will encourage you to self reflect and to look deeper into your inner self (your soul) so that you can truly clarify what happiness really means to you.

               7.   The Gifts of Imperfection Brené – Brown

              “Healthy striving is self-focused: How can I improve? Perfectionism is other-focused: What will they think? Perfectionism is a hustle.”

              Brené Brown

              Gift of Imperfection

                Renee Brown’s Book the Gift of Imperfection will show you how to find your courage, rediscover your self-belief and self worth.  For without these key essentials you wont be able to have a greater life. The Gift of Imperfection is about the lifelong journey.

                This book takes you from the place where you are asking the question: “What will people think?” to the place where you are making the statement “I am enough”.

                8. Learned Optimism: How to Change Your Mind and Your Life – Martin Seligman PhD 

                “Habits of thinking need not be forever. One of the most significant findings in psychology in the last twenty years is that individuals can choose the way they think.”  Martin Seligman

                Martin Seligman

                  Dr Martin Seligman is Dr Happiness! He is an expert on how one can live a happy and fulfilled life. In his book Martin Seligman talks about the power of being an optimist and uses scientific reasons as to why you should be living an Optimistic Life.

                  Seligman believes that Optimism and Pessimism are habits of thinking and these habits of thinking have been learned through out our lives. We just need to learn how to change these habits of thinking so that we can live happier more fulfilled lives. There is hope for you, if you have a pessimistic view of life, as Dr Seligman will teach you how to be an Optimist.

                  9. If Life Is A Game These Are Rules – Cherie Carter Scott

                  “Remind yourself often that self-esteem is ephemeral. You will have it, lose it, cultivate it, nurture it, and be forced to rebuild it over and over again.”  Cherie Carter Scott

                  .

                  If Life is Game there are Rules

                    Have you ever wondered what the heck is going on in your life or asked the question “ why does this happen to me?” If so, then you need to read this book by Cherie Carter Scott. Cherie Carter Scott presents a set of life rules that she calls “The 10 Rules of Being Human’.  This book is a reality check about how you should be living your life.  After you have read this book you will gain more clarity about  you, how to move in forward in your life and how play the game of life, which of course will result in you living a great life.

                    9. Seven Habits of Highly Effective People – Steven R. Covey

                    “Habit is the intersection of knowledge (what to do), skill (how to do), and desire (want to do).” Stephen R.Covey

                    The_7_Habits_of_Highly_Effective_People

                      “Each of us guard a gate of change that can only be opened from the inside.”  Stephen R Covey

                      Have you ever wondered why it is that some people are very good at getting things done?  Do you go looking for excuses to be distracted rather than sit down and get those essential tasks completed? The road to living a great life takes a lot of effort, commitment and focus. Distraction and procrastination will not get you a life you love.

                      Stephen Covey will show you how to become more effective at completing those essential tasks that can change your life. The 7 Habits are the winning strategies you should implement in your life so that you can live the life you desire.

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                      10. The Four Agreements – Don Miguel Ruiz

                      “Every human is an artist. The dream of your life is to make beautiful art.”  Don Miguel Ruiz

                      Four  Agreements

                        Seeking the advice and knowledge of others, particularly those who had been on similar journeys. is essential to you staying strong and committed to living a great life.

                        Don Miguel Ruiz is one person I sought out – his depth of wisdom, his spirituality and knowledge about life is insightful and inspiring. The Four Agreements are Don Miguel’s code for life. The Four Agreements provide an inspirational code for life, for the way you handle your relationships, how you behave and how you communicate with others.

                        If you are seeking inspiration and knowledge to find your courage to follow your dreams – then read The Four Agreements. You will discover four life principles that will definitely help you reach your dreams and aspirations in life.

                        11. Switch How To Change Things When Change Is Hard – Chip Heath & Dan Heath

                        “So the question is this: How can you make your changes a matter of identity rather than a matter of consequences?” Chip & Dan Heath

                        Switch

                          To live a great life you have to make changes and they are big changes. If I had to recommend one book that showed you how to create and maintain lasting change in your life  – then it would be Switch.

                          The best way to create and sustain the change in your life according to the authors is when you:

                          Direct The Rider – by providing rules to follow, precise actions with small measurable goals

                          Motivate The Elephant – identify the motivation to change or an emotional rationale for change

                          Shape the Path – set the direction and shape the path to facilitate the journey of change

                          When you get these 3 elements aligned then creating and sustaining the change in your life is pretty much guaranteed,

                          12. The Success Principles: How to Get From Where You Are To Where You Want To Be – Jack Canfield

                          “You only have control over three things in your life—the thoughts you think, the images you visualize, and the actions you take (your behaviour).”  Jack Canfield

                          Jack 2

                            This book offers practical advice on how to change those attitudes and beliefs that are preventing you from achieving your success in life. It shows you how to harness the resources you have within you and around you so that you can achieve any of the goals you set.

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                            13. Life Was Never Meant To Be A Struggle – Stuart Wilde

                            “You’re the only one who can decide what’s best for you.” Stuart Wilde

                            Life was

                              Stuart Wilde believes that the struggles in life are “laced with emotion and desperation” and we were born to be free. To achieve that freedom we have to move from struggle to free FLOW.

                              This book will help you to identify the cause of struggle in your life and shows you how to eliminate it quickly through a concerted action plan so you can achieve flow in your life.

                              14. The Power of Now – Eckhart Tolle

                              “Realize deeply that the present moment is all you have. Make the NOW the primary focus of your life”. Eckhart Tolle

                              power of now

                                “See if you can give more attention to the doing than to the results that you want to achieve through it. Give your fullest attention to whatever the moment presents” Eckhart Tolle

                                The Power of Now I call the 101 guide to spiritual growth and enlightenment.  This book has great tools and strategies for those of you who are interested in; mindfulness, awareness and the quest to achieving living a life you love in the now!

                                15. Think and Grow Rich – Napoleon Hill

                                “You are the master of your destiny. You can influence, direct and control your own environment. You can make your life what you want it to be.”  Napoleon Hill

                                thinkandgrowrich-21-219x300

                                  Napoleon Hill wrote Think and Grow Rich to help people overcome the physiological barriers that kept them from wealth.

                                  According to Napoleon Hill money brings us stability, which brings relief to our life, which results in us feeling a sense of satisfaction and when we feel satisfied we have a sense of belonging –this does make us happy. When we are happy we are living a great life.

                                  Napoleon Hill believes that key requirements to create wealth in your life are; self-belief, self-awareness, the motivation to succeed, direction, focus and a positive healthy relationship with money.

                                  Reading these 15 Self Help books will not give you the one and only ultimate answer you may seek as to how you can make a great life. They will, however give you advise, wisdom, knowledge, and the tools and strategies that will support and guide you on your journey to living a great life.

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                                  Kathryn Sandford

                                  Career Resilience Coach passionate about supporting others to grow and thrive in a complex world.

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                                  Published on January 16, 2019

                                  How to Effectively Manage a Heavy Workload at Work

                                  How to Effectively Manage a Heavy Workload at Work

                                  We’re all busy, but sometimes we go through periods where the work piles up and it seems like it might never end.

                                  You might have such a heavy workload that it feels too intimidating to even start.

                                  You may have said yes to some or too many projects, and now you’re afraid you won’t be able to deliver.

                                  That’s when you need to take a step back, take a deep breath, and start looking at what’s working and what’s not working.

                                  Here’re 13 strategies you can use to get out from under your overwhelming workload:

                                  1. Acknowledge You Can’t Do It All

                                  Many of us have a tendency to think we can do more than we actually can. We take on more and more projects and responsibility and wear numerous hats.

                                  We all have the opportunity to have and take on more work than we can reasonably expect to get done. Unfortunately, our workload is not static. Even now, while you are reading this article, I’m guessing that your inbox is filling up with fresh new tasks.

                                  To make real, effective progress, you have to have both the courage and resourcefulness to say, “This is not working”. Acknowledge that you can’t do it all and look for better solutions.

                                  At any given time in your life, there are likely many things that aren’t going according to plan. You have to be willing to be honest with yourself and those around you about what’s not working for you, both personally and professionally.

                                  The more you exercise your ability to tell the truth about what’s working and what’s not working, the faster you’ll make progress.

                                  2. Focus on Your Unique Strengths

                                  Whether you’re an entrepreneur, a leader or working as part of a team, every individual has unique strengths they can bring to the table.

                                  The challenge is that many people end up doing things that they’re simply not very good at.

                                  In the pursuit of reaching your goals or delivering a project, people end up doing everything themselves or taking on things that don’t play to their unique strengths. This can result in frustration, overwhelm and overwork.

                                  It can mean projects taking a lot longer to complete because of knowledge gaps, or simply not utilizing the unique strengths of other people you work with.

                                  It is often not about how to complete this project more effectively but who can help deliver this project.

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                                  So, what are your unique strengths that will ensure your workload is delivered more effectively? Here’re some questions to help you reflect:

                                  • Are you a great strategist?
                                  • Are you an effective planner?
                                  • Is Project Management your strength?
                                  • Is communication and bringing people together your strength?
                                  • Are you the ideas person?
                                  • Is Implementation your strength?

                                  Think about how you can bring the biggest value to your work and the projects you undertake.

                                  3. Use the Strengths of Your Team

                                  One of the simplest ways to manage your workload effectively is to free up your time so you bring your highest level of energy, focus and strengths to each project.

                                  Delegation or better teamwork is the solution.

                                  Everyone has unique strengths. It’s essential to think teamwork rather than working in isolation to ensure projects can be completed effectively. Besides, every time you give away a task or project that doesn’t play to your unique strengths, you open up an opportunity to do something you’re more talented at. This will empower both yourself and those around you.

                                  Rather than taking on all the responsibilities yourself, look at who you can work with to deliver the best results possible.

                                  4. Take Time for Planning

                                  “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe”. – Abraham Lincoln

                                  One hour of effective planning could save hours of time. Rather than just rushing in and getting started on projects, take the time to map everything in.

                                  You can take the time to think about:

                                  • What’s the purpose of the project?
                                  • How Important is it?
                                  • When does it need to be delivered by?
                                  • What is the best result and worst result for this project?
                                  • What are the KPIs?
                                  • What does the project plan and key milestones look like?
                                  • Who is working on this project?
                                  • What is everyone’s responsibilities?
                                  • What tolerances can I add in?
                                  • What are the review stages?
                                  • What are the challenges we may face and the solutions for these challenges?

                                  Having absolute clarity on the project, the project deliverables and the result you want can save a lot of time. It also gets you clear on the priorities and timelines, so you can block out the required amount of time to focus and concentrate.

                                  5. Focus on Priorities

                                  Not everything is a priority, although it can often feel, in the moment, that it is.

                                  Whatever you’re working on, there is always the Most Urgent, Important or Most Valuable projects or tasks.

                                  One tool you can use to maximize your productivity and focus on your biggest priorities is to use the Eisenhower Matrix. This strategic tool for taking action on the things that matter most is simple. You separate your actions based on four possibilities:

                                  1. Urgent and important (tasks you will do immediately).
                                  2. Important, but not urgent (tasks you will schedule to do later).
                                  3. Urgent, but not important (tasks you will delegate to someone else).
                                  4. Neither urgent nor important (tasks that you will eliminate).

                                  James Clear has a great description on how to use the Eisenhower Matrix: How to be More Productive By Using the Eisenhower Box

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                                    The method I use with my coaching clients is to ask them to lay out their Top Five priorities for the day. Then to start with the most important priority first. At the end of the day, you review performance against these priorities.

                                    If you didn’t get everything accomplished, start the next day with your number one priority.

                                    If you are given additional task/projects during the day, then you will need to gauge their importance V the other priorities.

                                    6. Take Time Out

                                    To stay on top of a heavy workload, it’s important to take time out to rest and recuperate.

                                    If your energy levels are high and your mind and body is refreshed and alert, you are in more of a peak state to handle a heavy workload.

                                    Take time out of your day to go for a walk or get some exercise in. Leave early when possible and spend time with people who give you a lot of energy.

                                    In the background, it’s essential to get a good night’s sleep and eat healthily to sharpen the mind.

                                    Take a look at this article learn about The Importance of Scheduling Downtime.

                                    7. Maintain a Healthy Work-Life Balance

                                    Maintaining a healthy work-life balance can be tough. The balance we all crave is very different from one another.

                                    I’ve written before about 13 Work Life Balance Tips for a Happy and Productive Life. Working longer and harder doesn’t mean achieving more, especially if you have no time to spend with the people that matter most. The quality of who you are as a person, the relationships you have, the time you spend in work, deciding on what matters most is completely within your control.

                                    Work-life balance is about finding peace within yourself to be fully present, wherever you are, whether that be in the office or at home, right now. It’s about choosing what matters most and creating your own balanced life.

                                    If you feel there is not enough balance, then it may be time to make a change.

                                    8. Stop Multitasking

                                    Multi-tasking is a myth. Your brain simply can’t work effectively by doing more than one thing at a time—at least more than one thing that requires focused attention.

                                    So get your list of priorities (see earlier point), do the most important thing first, then move to the next item and work down your list.

                                    When you split your focus over a multitude of different areas, you can’t consistently deliver a high performance. You won’t be fully present on the one task or project at hand.

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                                    If you allocate blocked time and create firm boundaries for specific activities and commitments, you won’t feel so overwhelmed or overworked with everything you have to do.

                                    9. Work in Blocks of Time

                                    To keep your energy up to produce your best results it’s essential to take regular breaks.

                                    I use the 60-60-30 method myself and teach it to my coaching clients.

                                    Work on a project for a sustained period of 50 minutes.

                                    Then take a 10-minute break. This could be taking a walk, having a healthy snack or just having a conversation with someone.

                                    Then continue to work on the project for a further 50 minutes.

                                    Then take another 10-minute break.

                                    Then take a complete 30-minute break to unplug from the work. This could be time for a proper lunch, a quick bit of exercise, reading or having a walk.

                                    By simply taking some time out, your energy levels stay up, the quality of your work improves and you reduce the risk of becoming burned out.

                                    10. Get Rid of Distractions

                                    Make an estimation on how many times you are distracted during an average working day. Now take that number and multiply it by 25. According to Gloria Mark in her study on The Cost of Interrupted Work, it takes us an average of 23 minutes and 15 seconds to return to the original task after interruption.[1]

                                    “Our research has shown that attention distraction can lead to higher stress, a bad mood and lower productivity.”

                                    Distractions don’t just take up your time during the distraction, they can derail your mental progress and focus for almost 25 minutes. So, if you are distracted 5 times per day, you could be losing almost 2 hours every day of productive work and almost 10 hours every week.

                                    If you have an important project to work on, find a space where you won’t be distracted, or try doing this.

                                    11. Commit Focused Time to Smaller Tasks

                                    You know sometimes, you need to simply tackle these tasks and take action on them. But there’s always something more pressing.

                                    Small tasks can often get in the way of your most important projects. They sit there on your daily To Do list but are often forgotten about because of more important priorities or because they hold no interest for you. But they take up mental energy. They clutter your mind.

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                                    Commit to spending a specific period of time completing all the small tasks you have on your To Do list. It will give you peace of mind and the space to focus more on your bigger priorities.

                                    12. Take a Time Audit

                                    Do you know exactly where your time is going each day? Are you spending too long on certain projects and tasks to the detriment of bigger opportunities?

                                    Spend a bit of time to analyze where you are spending your time. This insight will amaze you and give you the clarity to start adjusting where you focus your time and on what projects.

                                    You can start by taking a piece of paper and creating three columns:

                                    Column A is Priority Work. Column B is Good Work. Column C is low value work or stuff.

                                    Each day, write down the project or task and the time spent on each. Allocate that time to one of the columns.

                                    At the end of the week, record the total time spent in each column.

                                    If you are spending far too much time on certain types of work, look to change things so your focused time is in Column B and C.

                                    13. Protect Your Confidence

                                    It is essential to protect our confidence to ensure we don’t get overwhelmed, stressed and lose belief.

                                    When you have confidence as a daily resource, you are in a better position to problem solve, learn quicker, respond to anything, adjust to anything, and achieve your biggest opportunities.

                                    Confidence gives you the ability to transform fear into focused and relaxed thinking, communication, and action. This is key to put your mind into a productive state.

                                    When confidence is high, you can clearly see the possibilities at hand and create strategies to take advantage of them, or to solve the challenges you face each day.

                                    Final Words

                                    A heavy workload can be tough to deal with and can cause stress, burnout and ongoing frustration.

                                    The key is to tackle it head on, rather than let it go on and compound the long-term effects. Hopefully, you can take action on at least one of these tips.

                                    If it gets too much, and negatively affects your physical and mental health, it may be time to talk to someone. Instead of dealing with it alone and staying unhappier, resentful and getting to a point where you simply can’t cope, you have to make a change for your own sanity.

                                    Featured photo credit: Hannah Wei via unsplash.com

                                    Reference

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