I went full force on the transformation theme for March with my first ever self-help book -- You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life by Jen Sincero.
I'm a fairly optimistic person, but I have terrible anxiety and that gets in the way of living life more often than I would like. I'm also determined to have a successful, fulfilling career in the arts, so any extra encouragement is welcome.
The first draft of this review was very apologetic, but as I reflected on my reading, I realized that that was stupid and the whole point of the book was transformation and a lot of what she said genuinely resonated with me so I’m dropping the baggage here.
Sincero’s approach was very human and light on the cheese. She focused on becoming more optimistic and appreciative of the wonderful life you're living and she has a point.
“Love yourself.” is the last note in almost every chapter and I don't care who you are, that's good advice.
Food for thought passages:
“Growth ain’t for weenies…”
“It never cease to amaze me the precious time we spend chasing the squirrels around our brains, playing out our dramas, worrying about unwanted facial hair, seeking adoration, justifying our actions, complaining about slow internet connections, dissecting the lives of idiots, when we are sitting in the middle of a full-blown miracle that is happening right here, right now.
We’re on a planet that somehow knows how to rotate on its axis and follow a defined path while it hurtles through space! Our hearts beat! We can see! We have love, laughter, language, living rooms, computers, compassion, cars, fire, fingernails, flowers, music, medicine, mountains, muffins!”
“When we get so wrapped up in our heads, we miss out on what’s available to us right now in the moment. Stop and notice how you feel right now. Feel your breath moving in and out of your body. Feel the air on your skin. Feel your heart beating. Your eyes seeing. Your ears hearing. Notice the energy inside and outside of you buzzing. Shut off your thoughts and feel your connection to Source. B-r-e-a-t-h-e. Even if you’ve got bone-chilling credit card debts or you haven’t spoken to your mother in six years, right now, in this moment, you can find peace and joy in that which simply is.”
Just Take My Heart
Mary Higgins Clark
I started reading MHC's suspense novels when I was 13 and home sick with pneumonia. I have almost every book she's written in her decades long career--I fell behind a little bit in the last few years. If you're a fan of a book where you at some point think every character is guilty--usually with an Irish Catholic, female protagonist, check her out!
It had the classic I-know-who-the-killer-is-wait-what-no-he's-the-killer-I-wasn't-expecting-that twist which I think is good for the soul every now and then. It felt a bit too expositional here and there and the ending wasn't my favorite, but the murder investigation element makes me want to be a detective in my next life.