Self-Care Awareness Month: Self-Help & Personal Growth and Development Books
Self-Care Awareness Month
September is Self-Care Awareness Month, and I kicked things off last week with a blog post about self-care, what it is, and some tips for beginning a daily self-care routine in your life. Because I’m such a big believer in participating in the types of things I ask others to do, I included my story of how I began developing and implementing self-care activities in my own life.
Self-Help & Personal Growth and Development Books
In keeping with that theme of using my own journey as an example, I will admit that when I first started on my self-care journey, I found self-help and personal development books to be intimidating, and I avoided them. I had spent years reading textbooks and clinical books about ways to help clients in my therapy office, but I had never really read many self-help or personal development books.
It felt like a slippery slope. I knew if read a self-help or personal development book, I would feel compelled to make changes in my life, and that prospect was terrifying. I was great at helping other people, but I felt so stuck when it came to helping myself. And, I felt completely overwhelmed when I would imagine changing things in my life. Change is hard, and I have never loved it, but I also knew it was needed.
Self-Care as a Theme
Each year, I adopt a theme to guide my processes as I go through the year. It’s kind of like a resolution, but not as rigid. I’ll be writing a few future blog posts on this process soon, so stay tuned for more information about that. Anyway, I decided my theme for 2018 was going to be self-care, so that is where my self-care journey really began.
Starting the Journey
The first step was hiring a life coach. I knew I needed guidance as I started this journey, and it is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. She met me where I was on this journey, and she allowed me a lot of space and time to figure out how to create my daily self-care routine. I feel like it may be helpful to give some tips on picking a good life coach, so that will likely be another future post. But, for now, let’s get back to my self-care journey…
Cassandra, my coach, was my guide, and I’m so grateful I found her when I did. During our first meeting, I was honest about how overwhelmed I felt, and she allowed space for me to feel that, but she also pushed me to push through it. She suggested I start reading You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay, and I reluctantly agreed to do so. Sometimes the woo woo stuff is hard for me to connect to, but Cassandra helped me to see that just because I read a book, doesn’t mean I have to adopt all the concepts, ideas and approaches of the author of the book. Rather, reading self-help and personal development books is a way to add different perspectives to my ways of thinking.
I have a tendency to be an all-or-nothing thinker, which is one of the ways my OCD shows up, and I had not realized I was approaching self-help books from this perspective. Rather than seeing the self-help book as a decree that I should adopt in my own life 100%, I gave myself permission to read the books more objectively. If something didn’t ring true to me, then I didn’t have to change my own ways of thinking to match the author. Instead, I could look at things from different perspectives, and make a determination of what best fits into my life.
That was the key to changing how I approached self-help and personal development books. Once I pushed through my own stuckness, it felt like a whole new world opened up. Books that once felt scary and overwhelming, became a framework for me to develop new ways of thinking by taking pieces of each one and applying those things to my life. My all-or-nothing thinking was keeping me stuck, but once I figured that out, I was able to move forward.
I decided to completely embrace this new found freedom, and I joined a book club of other entrepreneurs, coaches, and helping professionals called The Book Club for Busy People. I wanted to find more perspectives to add to my own ways of thinking, and what once had been overwhelming and scary, was suddenly empowering! The first book we read was The 5 Second Rule by Mel Robbins, and I it completely changed my life. I have written a few blog posts about The 5 Second Rule, (here’s a link to the first one and here’s the link to the second one, if you’d like to check them out) and I was hungry for more.
After a few months of being part of the book club, I even started volunteering to lead chapter discussions. It was such an awesome experience, and I’m so grateful I was able to push through my own discomfort, because the personal development I gained feels invaluable now.
A few months later in June of 2018, I signed up for a monthly subscription service called Coach Crate. In addition to many self-care, self-help and personal growth and development products, there is a book of the month and a fabulous book guide included. I look forward to getting my Coach Crate each month, and the books have helped me further develop my self-care routine, improve my mindset, and have helped me to continue my journey of living my best life. If you would like to use my link to sign up for your own Coach Crate, I think you’ll really love it!
I also discovered the benefits of listening to audio books. My entrepreneur life often requires me to spend time in my car driving to events and meetings, and signing up for Audible allowed me to doing some self-care and personal growth and development from my car or through my earbuds connected to my phone. If you’ve never used Audible, you can sign up for a 30 day free trial and get your first 2 audio books free when using this link, and I highly recommend it!
My Book Recommendations
I get asked for book recommendations all the time, so I decided to sign up as an Amazon Associate in order to share direct links with you. As an Amazon Associate, I may earn a small commission from qualifying purchases, so thank you in advance.
If you are looking for a place to start, I thought I could give you a few of my favorite books that I’ve read or that I’m in the process of reading!
I love anything by Mel Robbins, and I cannot recommend her highly enough. She gave me the push I needed to take control back over my life. Here are my top recommendations from her:
I recommend anything and everything from Brene Brown, because she is amazing, but her books took me a bit to work through. She tells it like it is, and the directness can be hard to swallow for some people as they begin the journey of self development. If you want to push yourself, the rewards are worth it! You can find her books at the following links:
Jen Sincero is the author of You Are A Badass and You Are A Badass At Making Money. I have read them both, and I found them helpful. I think you can even purchase them as a set at this link. In addition to her books, I also decided to buy her motivational calendar which gives a daily quote or idea or perspective that I have thoroughly enjoyed as a part of my self-care morning routine. I just ordered the 2020 calendar, so I won’t miss any days!
Susan Jeffers is the author of the book Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway which toucheds on a number of similar concepts as Scott Allan, but her book took a much deeper dive into the role fear plays in our lives. My blog about Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway and The 5 Truths about Fear can be found here.
My Current Reading List
I’m always adding new books to my currently reading list, and I thought I would share some of the ones I’m currently reading.
Finish: Give Yourself the Gift of Done by Jon Acuff which is helping me push through procrastination and helping me finish what I’ve started.
I just started reading Expectation Hangover by Christine Hassler, and it has already rocked my view of expectations and how to deal with the let down when they aren’t met. It is pushing me to dig deep, and I love it! I may have to write a whole blog post about Expectation Hangover soon, because it is that amazing!
I just received two books by Gretchen Rubin. I took her only quiz on The Four Tendencies, and I knew I needed more information, so I ordered her book The Four Tendencies. I can’t wait to dive into it. I also decided to pick up a copy of her book Better Than Before, because it was recommended by Brene Brown.
Lindsay’s Tip: I recommend reading things that are recommended or endorsed by other people you connect with and trust.
Lindsay’s Tip: These were recommended by an entrepreneurial friend of mine that I trust, so I decided to add them to my collection. If you don’t know where to start, ask someone you trust where they began their journey.
***This post contains affiliate links, and I may receive a very small commission if you purchase through those links at no additional cost to you. Thank you for helping me out.***
Start Where You Are, Do What You Can
I realize that is a pretty long list of book recommendation, and there are so many more I want to eventually read and share. I don’t want to overwhelm you or make you think you have to order them all and spend all your time reading. Pick one that you’d like to start with and just focus on it. Start where you are, do what you can, and don’t hold yourself to anyone else’s standard. I do think reading self-help and personal growth and development books can be a powerful and incredibly helpful part of a self-care routine, and I think everyone can benefit from them.
My daily routine usually includes some read or listening, but it really depends on my day. The idea is not to be rigid with yourself, but rather to allow space to develop a routine that fits your life and your needs. You have to figure out how you want to implement them into your life. Give yourself permission to try some things, but only keep the things that work for you!
Work with Me
If you are interested in setting up an appointment for therapy, life coaching, or consulting or if you would like more information about ways to incorporate and implement self-care into your life, you can call my office directly at 314-485-9189 or feel free to send me a message. My direct email address is email@example.com and you can also follow me on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest for more life and relationship tips!
I will be launching a number of new workshops and coaching groups in the next few months, so there will be many ways to connect and work with me! Stay tuned for details on them coming soon!
Therapy Thoughts Workshops
If you are local to the St. Louis area and interested in attending my monthly Therapy Thoughts Workshops, I just wanted to let you know they are on hold for a bit, but we will be back soon with more helpfulness. I love being able to bring you a great discussion with tips to implement into your life. I’m so grateful to the The Bike Stop Cafe for this opportunity, and I can’t wait to see how this develops in the future! If you have topics or questions you’d like me to cover in a future workshop, please let me know. Either send me an email firstname.lastname@example.org or call my office 314-485-9189.
Therapy Thoughts Podcast
My Therapy Thoughts podcast has re-launched, and I am so excited!!! Each new episode will be uploaded to my Therapy Thoughts Podcast Blog on the website each Thursday afternoon at 2:00pm CST, and then I’ll share it to all the podcasting sites from there. It is also available on the Apple iTunes podcast site, and you can subscribe so you never miss an episode!
We may be changing the name of the podcast soon, but I’m not sure yet. There is already a Therapy Thoughts Podcast, and I don’t want there to be any confusion. I will update you as soon as we make a decision about what to do.
More than anything, I am so happy to have this up and running again, and I am so grateful to all of you for your continued support. Remember to make sure you are following all my social media platforms so will know when each new episode is available. And, make sure you subscribe to my YouTube channel, so you will be able to watch the episodes once I have the videos ready to go!