Three Books For Inspiration

guidebooks

Whilst I do love my fiction and fantasy, I also have a huge passion for inspirational guidebooks. I’m really interested in psychology and the human mind so these kind of books fascinate me and have helped to shape my personality and views of the world. These three books have had a significant effect on me so far and I find myself going back to these words when in need of a little confidence boost.

Dr Wayne Dyer: Living an Inspired Life 

I think that this book was written purely from the heart and you can see it on every page. Reading this work in a way opened my eyes a bit more about the idea of God and spirituality, and how it all is tied to your actions. I find spirituality extremely fascinating and this book explains a very interesting way to incorporate it into your everyday life. The main idea behind this book is that there is this Spirit that lives within all of us and when you truly live an inspired life, you live in spirit. This is the message that is being explored through Dyer’s own experiences in life, and ways of practicing this kind of living are introduced alongside the examples.

Even though you don’t believe in God or any kind of spiritual being, Living an Inspired Life is still worth the read as behind everything is generally the act of kindness and showing that towards other people, and noticing the signs of generosity that we face in life, that might easily go totally unnoticed. There is so much that the reader can take from this book and incorporate it to their own life, because this book is just full of good intentions and inspiration on how to live your life in a way, that you feel like you get something good out of it.

Brené Brown: Darin Greatly 

When I read this book for the first time, I found myself constantly having moments when I just went “yes, this is so true” or “I definitely need to work on this” or something along these lines. This book explores the concepts of shame and vulnerability which are such an important human emotions and we often tend to underestimate them in our lives. At least I have done so quite a long while, and for that reason I found this book to be really helpful on how to show my vulnerability in situations rather than keeping everything hidden inside.

This book introduces ways in which to express vulnerability in different situations in life and also explores different examples that are very close to many people’s daily life. Daring Greatly is divided into different sections, each expanding the topics of life, love, children and leading. This was such a quick work to read as the writing is very eloquent and easy to understand, but still complex enough for it to have this certain kind of credibility. The core message of the book is that by showing up with vulnerability and being in the “arena” you show your worth to the critics instead of never entering the arena and conforming to shame. This is a idea that I find to be very intriguing and I definitely want to explore it more in my life, and try to really take it to my heart.

Elizabeth Gilbert: Big Magic 

Eat Pray Love is one of my ultimate comfort books and I like to go back to it to find a bit inner strength whenever needed, so I was extremely excited to read Big Magic when it came out as I enjoy reading Gilbert’s works tremendously. This books is all about creativity and how to lure it back in when it is lost. Gilbert covers her own relationship with creativity in the book, and she introduces the idea of this specific Genius that ultimately leads to inspiration and creativity. The main idea of the book is that we all have this Genius that comes to us during creation and gives us the inspiration that is needed. I personally really like the idea that we all have this kind of gift that we can use if we need, but that it can only be accessed when you are open to it.

This book gives great guidance on how to get over time periods when the creative work doesn’t seem to flow and how to listen to this Genius to regain inspiration and creativity. I think this book is a good read even though you don’t consider yourself as a creative person as the idea can also be applied to your life in general, and it’s a really interesting take on the creative process and it’s pros and cons.

Even though I don’t go following blindly everything these kind of books say you should do to get a better life, I think it’s important to read them as they offer different kinds of perspectives to life. These points of view can be used as influences to your life choices or they can help you realise something about your lifestyle, that you haven’t given a lot of thought before. It’s fascinating to read about things that you wouldn’t normally read but ultimately it’s all for developing wider perspective of the world and it’s people.

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Flowing My Way To Strength

LIGHT

Yes, I’m talking about yoga. I’ve now been practicing yoga pretty much daily for about a year, and it has affected me in a lot of ways which I’d like to write more about in detail. I had been quite intrigued by yoga for a while before I actually started practicing it myself, and I had heard quite mixed feelings about it too. I started my yoga-journey on Youtube by following YogaWithAdriene videos. I went straight in with the 30 days of yoga challenge which was a great choice as it kept me returning to my mat daily and I fell in love with the practice. I have done a lot of sports in my life so I had a pretty good basic physical condition to start, which had an effect on my progress physically. It took me a while to get into the practice also mentally and I still sometimes struggle to keep my mind focused. Here’s just a few things that I’ve discovered so far in my practice.

Mental calmness & focus

I’m quite an anxious person and my mind is alway running without a break as stream of thoughts, even when I’m sleeping they cannot stop their race. The more I’ve practiced yoga, the more I’ve been able to notice when my thoughts are turning into anxiety. Just simply noticing the change in my mind I’ve had the opportunity to turn my thoughts away from bad to good. Yoga is all about focusing on the breath and how it moves through the body and I’ve found that I now take this mentality into my life outside the mat too.

Another change in my mind has been my responses to things and people who irritate me. I used to be quite easily annoyed but as I’ve grown my practice, and actually grown in age too, my responses have become more neutral and rational rather than a full burst of negative emotion.

Strength & energy

The practice of yoga has definitely had an effect on my physical strength as well as mental. I really enjoy how you sometimes cannot even tell that you’re strengthening certain muscles as the practice feels in a way extremely relaxing, at least to me. It’s almost like this invisible strength that comes from within and turns into physical strength. I’ve also noticed an increase in energy as I’ve continued my practice and I can feel it’s effects during the day.

Gratitude & happiness

This boost of energy also comes with increased happiness to me. My feelings are a lot more positive than they used be, of course there are days when I’m feeling low but nevertheless my general mood is happier than it was before. With yoga I’ve also applied a practice of gratitude into my life and together they form this strong sense of connection to the world through appreciation. There is also the sense of vulnerability that I’ve noticed in my practice which has helped me to deal with people and my own thoughts as well.

I can’t wait to see what else this yoga-journey will bring to my life, but I think I’ve now formed a life-long habit of yoga and I’m integrating it to my daily habits more and more every day and finding my way to my own practice.

 

 

Recently Read #9

sherlock

Sherlock: The Essential Arthur Conan Doyle Adventures Volume II

I’m a huge fan of the TV-series of Sherlock so it was about time I read some of the original work the episodes are based on. I’ve been meaning to read the works of Arthur Conan Doyle for a while actually, since I first discovered the show and now that I finally came around going it, I’m even more in love with the world of Sherlock Holmes.

This book is a selection of the short stories picked and introduced by the showrunner, writer and executive producer of the show; Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss, who alongside acting is also the co-creator. The book itself contains eleven stories as follows:

  • Silver Blaze
  • The Yellow Face
  • The Musgrave Ritual
  • The Greek Interpreter
  • The Final Problem
  • The Hound of Baskervilles
  • The Empty House
  • Charles Augustus Milverton
  • The Adventure of The Bruce-Partington Plans
  • The Adventure of The Devil’s Foot
  • The Adventure of The Dying Detective

My personal favourite from the adventures is definitely The Hound of Baskervilles. I found it to be a bit darker than the other stories and there were slight elements of horror included, which I especially enjoyed. The Hounds of Baskerville is actually also one of my favourite episodes in the series and I’m glad that I really enjoyed the original one as well. In this adventure we get to follow Dr Watson a bit more, while Sherlock performs his own investigations in peculiar ways behind the scenes. There is a lot of tension and uncertainty around the mystery and I love how it unravels very slowly. The Hound of Baskervilles is also the longest story in the book which might be why I enjoyed it so much as it didn’t feel rushed and there were many interesting side plots to uncover as well as the main mystery.

At first I wasn’t so sure if I liked the style of writing that Doyle performs but the more I got into the book, the more I started enjoying the writing which is very eloquent and keeps the reader really interested. It also truly feels like reading the articles of Dr Watson which I liked as we get a really close look on how Sherlock works from the point of view of Watson. I found it quite nice that there were also lots dialogue included in the stories instead just telling what happened and I also enjoyed the use of letters, telegrams and Watson’s personal journals as a way of telling the stories.

Another favourite of mine was The Adventure of The Dying Detective, which just gave a glimpse of the classic Sherlock Holmes and his unbelievably clever ways of catching the murderer whilst doing a bit of acting. I felt that this was a really good story to end the actual book as it shows the true friendship between Holmes and Watson and the trust that lies between them even in a matter of life and death.

I’m really happy that I picked this book from the bookstore as I’m now acquainted with the works of Mr Doyle and I adore them just as much as the TV-series or maybe even more, as I’m a lover of a good historical period book with a couple of murder mysteries and a super intelligent private detective with his clever companion.