Are you feeling unsatisfied or meaningless lately? Do you feel there is something you are supposed to be doing, but you just can’t quite figure it out? The books below are filled with stories to inspire you and spark the idea you’ve been searching for. If your schedule is too full to fit in another thing, you don’t have to, just load them up on audio and listen during your commute to work, in the shower, or while folding laundry.
1. Big Magic
By Elizabeth Gilbert
You’ll be able to really enjoy this latest book by Elizabeth Gilbert if you feel you’ve hit a road block in your path to express yourself. Whether you are feeling bitter that the world hasn’t rewarded your creativity or you feel trapped in mundane tasks with no room for self-expression, the author will motivate you with inspiration and creativity promoted by her years of thinking about and observing them in herself and others. It enchantingly draws in all readers and reassures that there is truly enough room, reason and value for us all to create. Since you are contemplating this list, you are already on the right path to open the floodgates of your unique expression.
2. Let’s Pretend This Never Happened
By Jenny Lawson
Known by her fans first as “The Bloggess,” Jenny tells her life story in this, her first novel. It will have you laughing out loud at the truth. It’s so good you know she can’t make up the tales she shares. Her sense of humor shines through as an anchor in her anxiety prone waters. Her stories include her uniquely eccentric father, her job as a snow cone creator, a human resources worker, and a Texan. Full of charm, awe and creativity she literally wrote the book about how to handle life when it seems to be throwing lemons, or in her case, raccoon carcass puppets, at you.
3. It’s Hard Not to Hate You
By Valerie Frankel
Valerie’s years spent trying to accept herself, put on a smile when she felt bad, and generally ‘flip her egg to sunny side up’ get turned on their head when she decides to own her actual feelings. This is packed full of dry wit and humor with deep golden insights about accepting all your emotions and making them work for you. Some of her chapters titles include, Hate Your Way To Happiness, Why I Have No Friends Part I and II and I Hate Your Kids. If books like The Secret were not your thing, check this out for a different kind of understanding.
4. F*ck Feelings
By Michael Bennett MD & Sarah Bennett
This is also definitely not your mama’s self-help book. It was written by a father/daughter pair, he’s a psychiatrist, she’s a comedian. It is packed with advice from years of the Dr.’s work with patients in psychiatry in the lingo of a straight talking comedian. You’ll especially want to read this if you are dealing with chronic negative habits. The book will guide you about how to set standards to live by, regardless of your feelings.
5. Tuesdays with Morrie
By Mitch Abloom
This is a classic and warms your heart whether you are reading it for the first time or again, with a few more years of perspective. It is one of those timeless volumes that offers a dose of insight, touchingly delivered in a quick read. Like the main character in the book, you will have no choice but to expand your consciousness while listening to a mentor and his student navigating life and appreciating those who guide us.
6. Year of Yes
By Shonda Rhimes
For Shonda Rhimes it is clear that telling a story is her thing. She has been the Queen of Thursday night television, with hits like Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal, for some time. This novel tells the other side of her life, the personal side, which is just as interesting as the tales she weaves! The look at her personal life, including struggles to live both in and out of the basic life script we all have written in our heads, leaves you feeling very connected. The glimpse at her genius fills you with hope and motivation.
7. Breakfast with Buddha
By Roland Merullo
The is the story of an unlikely pair of men that take a road trip and toy with life’s big questions. The author enjoys his life and yet has an empty feeling that creeps up on him often. The writing is a perfect blend of humor and wit, with just enough suspense and wisdom to help you get back on track. While it is fiction, you will find the characters so charming and believable you’ll be googling them on-line, just to be sure. While this is not a heavy read, it does provoke a wide range of emotions. You will defiantly laugh out loud, possibly tear up, and definitely reflect on the true meaning of life as this book evokes a feeling that you are discussing your world view with a wise teacher.
8. Uganda Be Kidding Me
By Chelsea Handler
Chelsea’s style is definitely crude and unconcerned about political correctness, or correctness in general. This is one of her many books and has a highly relatable base line theme of travel between friends as a show of support and adventure after some romantic relationship struggles, yet it is handled Chelsea style which is one few of us could relate to or ever pull off. She will make you laugh, of course, but she will also inspire you to be true to yourself.
9. 7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess
By Jen Hat maker
Is your material stuff or the daily scramble up the ladder getting you down? If you are feeling overwhelmed by the literal stuff of life, this book will offer you a plan to find a solution. While the author’s scale of commitment to clearing her life of clutter (in multiple arenas) is admirable you could easily try a smaller scale mutiny to test the waters of this idea yourself. Sometimes a little rebellion will shake up your perspective enough to get you back on track. This book will make you consider possibilities and be worth the read.
10. The Strange Case of Origami Yoda
By Tom Angleberger
If you are thinking that you’d like to actively look for and remind yourself of purpose, why not share a read with your favorite children. Beyond an entertaining read for all ages, this is a heartwarming reminder about staying open to positive possibility and accepting the gifts you have to offer, even if you sometimes aren’t sure what they are. In the cadence of the wise paper Jedi, “Master this also you shall.” If you go the audio route for this book, you’ll have a cast of characters that create added depth, and on paper you’d get a graphic novel with great teen type sketches.