Books That Drastically Changed My Life

Riley Blue

1. The Gifts of Imperfection by Brené Brown

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No matter how strongly they deny it, very few people haven’t struggled with these questions:

  • Why isn’t everyone else working harder and living up to my expectations?
  • What will people think if I fail or give up?
  • When can I stop proving myself?

In this book, Dr. Brené Brown, a leading expert on shame, authenticity, and belonging, shares what she’s learned from a decade of research on the power of Wholehearted Living — a way of engaging with the world from a place of worthiness.

“Wholehearted living is about engaging in our lives from a place of worthiness. It means cultivating the courage, compassion, and connection to wake up in the morning and think, No matter what gets done and how much is left undone, I am enough. It’s going to bed at night thinking, Yes, I am imperfect and vulnerable and sometimes afraid but that doesn’t change the truth that I am worthy of love and belonging.”

How this book changed my life

During several paragraphs in the book, it felt as if Dr. Brown was writing my story. The conversational tone of the book made it feel more like talking to a friend. A dear friend who tells me showing my weakness to the world is not just important, but it’s also one of the strongest acts of self-love I can commit. But before I go there, I need to embrace my flaws, fears, and everything I perceive as my weakness..

2. Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert

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A treatise on living your best life as a creative person — this book is filled with theories and anecdotes that will change the way you look at your workflow.Liz Gilbert puts forward the idea that the universe buries strange jewels deep within all the living beings and then stands back to see if we can find them. The hunt to uncover these jewels is what she calls Creative Living.The biggest obstacle between where you are now, and your creative best is fear. It tries to hold you back from achieving your potential. This book teaches you to befriend that fear and uncover the jewels hidden in your soul.

“A creative life is an amplified life. It’s a bigger life, a happier life, an expanded life, and a hell of a lot more interesting life. Living in this manner — continually and stubbornly bringing forth the jewels that are hidden within you — is a fine art, in and of itself.”

How this book changed my life

My biggest takeaways from the book are:

  • Every idea in the world has already been worked upon. That doesn’t mean you shouldn't create content around it. Ultimately, your authenticity matters more than your uniqueness.
  • Treat an idea with respect and start working on it the moment inspiration strikes you. But that doesn’t mean you’ll sit and wait for ideas to come. You’ve got to work on your skills.

3. The Four Agreements by Miguel Ruiz

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I can already hear you rolling your eyes and saying, “Please, not another self-help book,” but hear me out. The Four Agreements by Miguel Ruiz is not your average self-help book that’s all talk and no substance. The author offers precise, implementable steps that can actually hugely impact your life.The agreements laid out here are so simple, you’ll often find yourself wondering how they are not common knowledge. But isn’t that how most of us live life? Knowing what’s best for us and yet, choosing to stay in denial. This book will force you to shatter that perspective and take a cold, hard look at the things that can actually help improve your life at least 10x.

“If you live in a past dream, you don’t enjoy what is happening right now because you will always wish it to be different than it is.

How this book changed my life

It taught me the Four Agreements I’ve since then tried hard to incorporate into my life.

  1. Be impeccable with your word.
  2. Don’t take anything personally.
  3. Don’t make assumptions.
  4. Always do your best.

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