Over the years and throughout my training and practice I have read hundreds of books on self-development, spirituality and self-improvement. Some of these were so-so and some were really interesting. However, five books in particular have had a really powerful and life-changing affect on me so I wanted to share these with you:
This book is a fantastic tool if you’re looking for purpose and meaning in your life. If you don’t really love what you do but you’re not sure what you actually do want to do, this book helps you discover your passions, talents and purpose. It is packed with exercises, including meditations and mind-mapping (where you ‘dump’ your thoughts into a kind of ‘map’ on paper). It helps you understand what you’re good at, what you love, what you know, what makes you happy and who your kind of people are. Then there are exercises to bring all this together so you can form an action plan. Reading this book many years ago is what helped me to understand that my purpose was to help people grow, change and heal. After reading this I enrolled on my energy healing diploma and never looked back.
I first read this book over 15 years ago and really struggled to understand it – it’s not the easiest of reads! However, it then appeared back in my life a few years later and its messages suddenly made so much sense to me and had quite a profound affect. It explains the importance of living in the present moment – that the past and the future don’t exist – all you have is right here in this moment. It helps you understand how your thoughts, emotions, to-do lists, deadlines, meetings etc all get in the way of actually living and enjoying life. When you’re ruminating over the past or worrying or getting excited about the future you’re not actually living and this book explores this concept. It also introduces the ‘pain-body’ - the part of you that is triggered by other people’s behaviours or by situations and how you can recognise and stop this so you can focus on enjoying every moment of your life.
I absolutely love this book and it is particularly powerful if you are someone who is very visual or if you have a strong imagination or creativity. The author shows you how to view your life as a series of landscapes all laid out on a map and it teaches you how to use your own inner compass to explore the map. It teaches you to consult with your own wisdom, through conversations with imaginary beings and exploring different ‘terrains’. It helps you to break old habits, gain a really deep understanding of yourself and your behaviours and find authentic purpose and meaning in your life. I read this book years ago and still regularly do the exercises in it when I come across a problem in my life because the learning I get from them is so powerful!
You may well have heard of the concept of the ‘inner child’ – that part of us with those unmet needs from childhood such as love, respect, affection or attention. In this book Susan Anderson takes this concept a step further and introduces the ‘outer child’ – the part of us that tries to meet our inner child’s needs but does this through self-sabotage, instant gratification and destructive behaviours. Have you ever been doing well on a diet and then binged on cake? Given up smoking and then gone out for a cigarette? That’s your outer child playing up! The book is full of exercises to help you start a dialogue between your wise adult self, your inner child that has unmet needs and your outer child that self-sabotages to try and meet these needs. It helps you bring these three parts of yourself together and form an understanding, helping you to release shame and guilt and feel happier and more fulfilled.
I have always firmly believed that our thoughts affect our emotions which in turn affect our reality – and there are many books on this topic. However, this one actually scientifically proves this. It explores the fields of quantum physics, neuroscience, brain chemistry, biology and genetics to prove undisputedly that by changing your thoughts you actually change your reality – in the way that scientists observing particles actually change the way they behave just through the act of observing them. The third part of the book gives a step by step process for how to release the old ways of thinking that have been holding you back and create new neural pathways to bring into your reality whatever it is you want. I had to read this twice and go back and underline the key science bits so I could really understand it!! But it has been well worth doing.
If you’re up for changing your life in powerful ways I’d highly recommend stocking up, taking some time out and devouring what these books have to teach you. Let me know your thoughts!
Lindsay Heath is a hypnotherapist and energy healer helping people to achieve lasting change. Find out more.