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We love books in our household! All three of us are massive readers. We have overflowing bookshelves, Kindles and we’ve even gotten into audiobooks. But, for me, nothing beats the feeling of curling up with a good paperback or hardcover book. The smell of the paper and the swish of each page-turning. The way you can disappear for hours to other lands, times, and experiences… all from the comfort of your own home or campsite.
About 10 years ago, I began my journey of self-help/spirituality. I was at a crossroads in my relationship and a girlfriend suggested I read Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat, Pray, Love. I got a copy and read it in two days. The moment on the bathroom floor in the middle of the night… I’d been there. The desire to be more than what was expected of me as a women/a partner… Hell yes, I was there. The niggling feeling in the pit of my stomach to go travel… check, check, check! I ended my relationship. Booked
I ended my relationship. Booked myself a flight and tour through Morocco. And found myself in another relationship because I hadn’t learnt how to be alone, and be happy with me. It was like Liz and I were twins/besties/spirit sisters.
But, then something shifted. I studied Eat, Pray, Love for my honours project at University. It’s beautiful, inspiring, quote worthy pages, now defaced by pen and pencil scrawl and colour-coded post it notes picking apart every authorial decision she ever made. I have read the book so many times now. I don’t know if I love it or hate it anymore. But, I do know this. Ten years ago, it changed my perspective on life. I stopped living for others and started living for myself. And for that, I will forever be grateful!
My go to whenever a physical illness/ailment crops up in my body. The Universe guided me to this book. A friend had mentioned it to me while I was in South Africa for my friend Jeremy’s memorial service. Walking around the International Airport in Johannesburg, killing time before my flight back to Australia, what should I see on the bookshelf… yep, Anatomy of the Spirit by Caroline Myss. My boarding pass from that flight still lives in the pages of the book. Faded, but reminding me of the way the Universe knows what we need and when we need it.
Anatomy of the Spirit has taught me so much about the human body and the way the mind works. And the self-examination questions at the end of Chakra chapters help you dive deep into yourself. But, my favourite part is the Energy Anatomy table. It’s my go to. Digestive problems… check the Energy Anatomy for mental and emotional issues. Hips out of place… emotionally what am I worrying about? The Energy Anatomy table covers body parts, emotional responses/issues and physical dysfunctions to help you get to the bottom of what is really going on in your body… and start to let go of what no longer serves you.
Don’t have time to read? This is the book for you!! Each chapter is about 3 pages long (some are as short as one page and a couple are as long as six pages). Just the perfect amount to read before falling asleep at night or to read quickly while the kids are eating (pretty much the only time they stop talking in our house for 5-10 minutes!). Rise Sister Rise by Rebecca Campbell is a guide to unleashing the wise, wild woman within. It invites us to return to our feminine strengths, cycles, and energy, instead of fighting to fit into more masculine energies we’ve previously felt we had to live by.
Each chapter has questions to spark the imagination and help you to dive deep. The questions, mantras, and exercises encourage you to explore your fears and limiting beliefs in order to change your perspective and life.
Dictionary of Dreams
In the lead-up to every new moon, it seems this book gets an almighty workout! Dreams are messages from our subconscious. They can be warning signs or signs to pay attention. Dreams can help us to set new goals and intentions or change direction if we’ve strayed off course. We will regularly check the dictionary first thing in the morning if one of us has had a dream during the night and it’s surprising the revelations we have!
People often think that enlightenment is a happy, joyful journey. Well, it’s not! I was one of those people who thought that it was all sunshine, rainbows, laughter and calmness. That is until I started unravelling and rediscovering myself. The journey of self-discovery and enlightenment is not a pleasant one, in fact, it’s going to be the toughest thing you ever do. You crack open, you cry, you scream, and you feel like you are losing your mind (because you are. You release the attachment of the Ego to connect with your true self).
Adyashanti’s The End of Your World is a beautiful book explaining the nature of enlightenment. I regularly draw on the teaching in this book in my yoga classes and mastermind program. If you’re looking to learn more about the Ego, our emotions, and how we react in situations on our journey to enlightenment or consciousness then I can’t recommend this book enough. It blew my mind!!
There are so many books that have changed my life, but these are just a few. What books have changed your life? I’d love to know and add some new ones to my reading list!