9 Books That Can Change Your Life
If there is one thing that is constant about life, it was once said, it is change. And no, this is not in reference to pocket change either, I’m talking about the change that is life itself.
Right now, you are changing. You just changed. Old cells died, new cells developed, you just aged a bit, and a billion other things in the world just shifted…including you.
The thing with change is this…there are the things we CAN change and the things we CAN’T change.
But what about changing your life for the better? What about having a few little doors in your mind opened?
Below I’ve listed out 9 powerful books I think every human should read once in their lifetime. They have had a huge impact on my life and forever changed my life in one way or another. Sure, I know many may not be your cup of tea, but I bet at least one of them will strike a bit of interest in you. I’m so glad I discovered these great books in my life. They all created that “ah ha” moment within me or opened new doors to my life, changed the way I live life, and the way I also view it.
9 Books That Can Change Your Life (in no particular order)
1. Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu
One of my favorite books of all time. The Tao Te Ching was written roughly 2500 years ago in China and is considered the most influential Chinese book of all time. It serves as the basis for the philosophical school of Taoism. Taoism teaches that there is one undivided truth at the root of all things. It breaks down life to the most simple foundations and truths in 81 short chapters.
The first time I read the Tao Te Ching I was simply blown away by it’s wisdom and simplicity. Everything written within rang true to me and made complete sense. I simply refer to it as the handbook to life. It covers it all.
Simple, powerful and chock full of wisdom. The Tao Te Ching should be read by everyone and fully absorbed. I truly believe the world could be a much better place if everyone simply implemented just a fraction of it’s wisdom. You can read it online right here.
Little things come in small packages, and this tiny little book (more like a pamphlet) is no exception. It’s small enough to fit in your pocket, only costs $2-$3 bucks, but it can simply transform your life. It Works shows you how you can manifest anything you want in your life by focusing on it. The steps are dead simple, but don’t be deceived. I’ve actually used the simple method in this tiny red book on all kinds of things…and many of them actually manifested and came true. No joke.
If you have goals in life and there are things you would like to achieve, It Works will show you a simple formula to get what you want. Don’t ask me how it works, I just know it does. It’s a mix of the power of thinking, the law of attraction, and more…all put very simply in one tiny book you can read in a matter of minutes.
Give it a shot and see how it can affect your life.
3. The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
This book came out of nowhere for me. The Power of Now is simply just about that…the now. Many of us run around this life going from this thought to that thought, this chore to that chore, paying this bill or that bill, and we are never fully present. This book taps into why we need to stay in the now, and what it can do to transform our lives. Tolle writes beautifully and in a precise manner that makes this book easily digestible, yet at the same time, deeply challenges your mind and your view of living.
The Power of Now is probably my favorite book of the last few years, without a doubt. What he is saying is nothing that has not been said before about being mindful and present. This concept has been around for centuries. But it is the way Tolle directs the message that makes this book special.
Who would have thought that being in the NOW would be the greatest present (no pun intended) to leading a happy life?
4. Working On Yourself Doesn’t Work by Ariel and Shya Kane
I think this is probably the greatest title to any self-improvement book out there. Working on Yourself Doesn’t Work couldn’t be a more fitting title either…that is exactly what the book is about, letting go. Ariel and Shya Kane are a happily married couple who have walked down many roads to try to find happiness, including going to lengthy meditation retreats and more, looking and searching for contentment. After many years, they finally realized that we don’t have to do anything to be happy or content. We simply just have to BE.
Yes, once again, this is very “zen” but the way in which they explain why it is important to surrender and accept many thing in our lives is what makes this simple little book so profound. It is a quick and easy read, and so dead simple a young person could understand the concepts. I highly recommend any and all books by the Kane’s.
5. Zen and the Art of Happiness by Chris Prentiss
I’ve read many many books on happiness but Zen and the Art of Happiness sums them all up the very best. Once again, this is a small book with amazing insight into what makes us happy, and what we are doing wrong. I remember stumbling across an ad for this book in Psychology Today and thought it sounded interesting. Once I read it, I read it again because it simply spoke to me. I’ve since recommended it to many people.
This book is simply life changing if you apply it. It strips away the nonsense we put ourselves through in our daily lives and struggles and shines a light on what is leading us astray from real, genuine happiness.
6. The Places That Scare You by Pema Chodron.
Life is hard. Life can be very difficult and we all face really tough times that can scare us to pieces. Pema Chodron, a Buddhist nun, explores these areas and shows you how you can get through these difficult and challenging times. She uses mindfulness, slogans, aspirations and more to show that we can make it through when times are tough. Simply written and easy to follow, Pema is one of my favorite authors on the subject of contentment and happiness. I feel this is one of her best books.
I discovered this book during a really rough period in my life and it helped me immensely. Reading it gave me a sense of peace that everything is going to be ok, and I will make it.
Everyone hits hard times in life, and I know you are no exception. I truly feel the wisdom in this book can ease those difficult and scary times for you. I highly, highly recommend it.
7. Loving What Is: Four Questions That Can Change Your Life by Byron Katie
What an amazing book this is. Katie literally went “crazy” at one point in her life and was put in a house with other people with problems. She fell into deep depression, misery, and things looked very bleak for her. Then one day, she woke up on the floor of this “half-way” house (in the attic) and noticed a cockroach cross the floor…and then a light went on in her mind. Call it transformation, call it whatever you want…at that point Katie had a life breakthrough. She discovered the root of her unhappiness and her life changed forever.
What Katie discovered is that our thinking is the cause of our suffering. She developed “The Work” to help cut through our thinking and get to the real truth, the present, so that we can relieve the mental weight and suffering we carry on our shoulders. “The Work” simply consists of 4 questions you can apply to your thoughts or beliefs, and it will strip away the unnecessary, and create inner freedom. To watch Katie use “The Work” on live people, simply visit YouTube.com and put in her name. It’s amazing how, in a matter of minutes, she can transform people’s thinking with her simple process.
8. Hope and Help For Your Nerves by Dr. Claire Weekes
Everyone of us usually faces anxiety at some point in our lives. In fact, anxiety is one of the most common mental disorders in the USA. This can include generalized anxiety or panic attacks. Personally, I know what both feel like and I can tell you…it’s miserable. It can seriously take over your life in a hurry. At one point, I was getting therapy, trying medications, and reading book after book on anxiety. There were many good ones, but this one, Hope and Help For Your Nerves simply rose above the rest. Written by Dr. Claire Weekes, Hope and Help For Your Nerves shows why we are anxious, what is going on internally, and most of all…simple and effective ways to overcome anxiety and panic. It can be a lifesaver for anyone with anxiety. Everything you need is covered in this little book and I highly recommend it.
9. The Bible
The Bible, the greatest selling book in the world, the Word of God, what hasn’t been said about this book. Now, I know this is touching on one’s own religion and beliefs, but The Bible truly is an amazing, life changing book. Simple call it the handbook to one’s soul, a guidebook for proper living, and the breath of God.
Powerful, mind blowing, and always relevant.
I consider myself a Christian, so of course The Bible speaks true to me. But then again, I’m an avid fan of Buddhism as well. So I consider myself a…Christian Buddhist.
I know this book selection is a bit controversial, but I had to add it as it is the greatest “book” of all time.
I sincerely hope you have enjoyed this list. I do think many of these books can serve you well and be life-changing. I know they have changed mine for the better, without a doubt, and many of them I return to again and again. They are like close friends that will always be with me over the course of my journey through this thing called life.
So now my question goes to you (the reader)…
What books have changed YOUR life?
I would love to hear what you have to say!
Posted on July 22, 2009