Life-Changing Books You Need to Read

I’m not big on saying “this one particular thing changed my life!” because I don’t believe that there’s any one thing or person or moment that changes you–it is all these things, and all other things, combining over time, mingling together within you to create the growth and change you see.

But if there were ever books that could facilitate personal growth, really push you toward the next level, then these would be them.

Each of these books was recommended to me long before I read them. Sometimes years before. Each one was picked up at a different point in my life, for no other reason than that I remembered the book at the time, and though, “Huh, I’d like to read that.”

Invariably, I ended up reading each of these books at a time when I really, really needed them. They were all specific to the period of my life that I read them, significant in their meaning and what they taught me, and powerful tools for positive change for me.

So on this page (which I’ll update as needed), I’m going to share with you the books that have helped me most, in the hopes that they might help you, too.

The Gift of Fear by Gavin de Becker

This powerful book talks about something we all experience: Fear.

But rather than treat it like a negative, de Becker takes on a different angle. He acknowledges the importance of fear. The meaning of fear. We don’t experience emotions–not even unpleasant ones like terror–for no reason. De Becker teaches readers how to recognize and understand our fear, deciphering what it’s trying to tell us and using that knowledge to keep us safe and in power of our lives.

This book is empowering. It’s aimed at women, but it’s good for everyone. It applies to all situations, from intense stalker-death-threat scenarios to irksome acquaintances who won’t respect our boundaries.

I read The Gift of Fear when I needed the strength and guidance to escape what could have potentially become a dangerous situation. De Becker explains how many of us are conditioned to deny our feelings, minimize our fears, and ignore our instincts. By explaining fear, he empowers us to use it, rather than succumb to it, and that makes all the difference.

Radical Forgiveness by Colin Tipping

The title of this book doesn’t lie–it’s radical, for sure. This is the kind of book I want everyone to read, but I’m also hesitant to recommend, because it’s just so out-there. But that’s part of what makes it great.

Radical Forgiveness doesn’t come at the idea of forgiveness like other books you’ve seen. It takes a…uh…radical stance by saying that, rather than forgive our wrongdoers for hurting us, we recognize that there is no wrong to forgive, and there is no “wrongdoer” in the first place.

I’m not going to try and explain the book here, because it’s far too nuanced and wonderful to do justice to in a little blurb on my blog. Besides, the book speaks for itself. It’s empowering, it’s refreshing, it’s brilliant and it’s something that can do so much more for your life than relieve stress and anger. This is a book that, if the philosophy is adopted and practiced regularly, can change not only your life, but the entire world.

Maybe I’m sounding a little melodramatic here, but I stand by my words: This book can change the world. And if you read it and take it to heart, you can change the world.

 


 

This is in no way a comprehensive list, and only you can decide what books you need, and when you need them. If these books don’t speak to you, that’s okay. You might have different needs. You might be in a different place in your life. Be open to what you need, and accepting of how you feel. There are no right or wrong answers when it comes to helping ourselves.

Oh, and if you have a book that’s totally rocked your world, I want to hear about it! Email me at eve@hijackhighschool.com and tell me what books have changed your life.

Keep being awesome.