Books That Will Change The Way You Think About Life
Did you feel it?
That jolt... you know, the Earth tilting on its axis? Oh, don't worry. That was just your latest read turning your world upside down.
Books have a funny way of doing that — completely changing your perspective on life.
They have the power to morph you into an entirely different person with new thoughts and beliefs, all within the span of a few chapters.
It's pretty remarkable when you think about it.
With that mantra in mind, here are six reads guaranteed to give you a new take on everything you know. Sometimes, getting a new perspective is just what you need to gain some clarity on your own life.
1. "South of Forgiveness" by Thordis Elva
They say forgiveness gives you peace of mind, yet some truly reprehensible behavior seems impossible to move past.
Elva, however, managed to come face-to-face with the man who raped her when she was 16, and even participated in a TED talk with him.
We believe something so horrific would hurt us forever, yet Elva faced it head on. She makes us reconsider how to approach the worst moments of our lives.
You have to give her credit; there's no denying the strength she must have, in order to relive something so awful.
2. "No Baggage" by Clara Bensen
The last thing I associate with online dating is spontaneity. I'm personally not too keen on taking risks after meeting someone new.
But Bensen — who mustered up the strength to digitally date after a quarter-life crisis — decided to embark on a completely unplanned eight-country trip with a charismatic professor... but no reservations... or anything else most people would plan before leaving home with a stranger.
But maybe there's something to be said about her jovial approach to travel and life.
Sometimes you just have to leave your bags behind and focus on you, as difficult or unrealistic as it might seem.
3. "Heaven Is For Real" by Todd Burpo and Lynn Vincent
It might sound selfish, but I think my grandfather's life was cut short at 91.
The man who played 18 holes of golf, climbed ladders and had a countable number of bad days in his entire life was taken from me within months, and he didn't make it to 100, like I was convinced he would.
I couldn't handle the loss, nor could anyone in my family. My relatives passed around "Heaven Is For Real," and listened to the story of young Colton, who watched his parents from heaven when he had been sick and in surgery.
Regardless of your religious beliefs (trust me, I'm a former angsty Catholic school girl), there's something comforting about this little boy's story. It'll make your loss feel less distant, prove your loved ones are still connected to you.
It makes you wonder what it's like to be the one who's gone instead of mourning.
I just hope when my gramps is looking down on me, he didn't see the disarray I left the basement (once his work area, now my personal storage space).
4. "The Happiness Project" by Gretchen Rubin
I'll be honest, the last place I find inspiring is the New York City bus.
I'm too busy attempting not to get carsick in the back seat, which inevitably is only available place to sit.
Rubin, however, realized during her commute that she wasn't doing meaningful activities, that she wasn't devoting herself to happiness. Thus, she created her 12-month long personal happiness project to readjust her values.
Sometimes inspiration comes in the unlikeliest of places, but you just have to go with it.
Here's hoping I get bitten by the creative bug on the overcrowded F train tomorrow morning.
5. "Promises To Keep" by Joe Biden
Our favorite politician (yes, we're quite fond of Justin Trudeau, too) has one hell of a story.
Regardless of political preferences, there's no arguing Biden is one of the most selfless human beings on the planet.
Despite all of his losses (his first wife, his daughter and his son), he managed to persevere and serve his country.
I could never imagine suffering such devastating losses and still managing to put everyone else before myself.
We might have been led to believe it's easy to crumble after tragedy, but Biden grew stronger.
6. "She Persisted" by Chelsea Clinton
For any woman who has felt powerless, Chelsea Clinton is here to remind you with her forthcoming picture book just how strong females are.
Inspired by the 2017 battlecry of women everywhere, "Nevertheless, she persisted," Clinton tells the story of 13 powerful women throughout history, including Helen Keller, Sonia Sotomayor and Oprah Winfrey, to name a few.
Women have been conditioned to be agreeable. However, the ones who stick up for themselves — even if they're disagreeing with a man in the process — are the ones little girls can look up to.