Start 2021 Strong by Reading These 5 Books

Photo by Jonathan Borba on Unsplash

It’s no secret that reading unlocks new perspectives and concepts in your life.

One of my favourite transformational coaches, Katie Webster says in her first podcast episode, “You already have everything you need to succeed inside of you”. Books can help you unlock the skills you already have within you to succeed in all areas of your life.

That is why I’m going to recommend 5 powerful books that ask you to think a little deeper about what you can do for yourself, for others, and for the world.

These books transformed how I approach relationships, money, mindset, and communication. Topics that are incredibly powerful to start with, or even deepen your journey of conscious growth in 2021.

The books are:

1. Getting the Love You Want

This book introduced me to the concept of awareness in relationships. Inside you’ll find practical exercises to recognize your self-defeating behaviours and enhance your communication skills with your partner. Even if you are single, you’ll get incredible insights and reflect on your past relationships.

Not going to lie, I got triggered by this book. The author, Harville Hendrix, compares between our childhood relationships with our parents and our chosen relationships today. When I read his bold statements in the earlier chapters, I immediately put the book down, turned to my partner and said, “what the f*** is he talking about?! I don’t like this book.” I felt attacked and disgusted — all the more reasons to continue reading the book to dig deeper into my triggers. Instead, I put the book down for a month before I continued reading on. Eventually, I approached the book with an open mind. I began to enjoy the book, nodding my head with “oohs” and “ahhs” as I read Hendrix’s exercises and case studies.

This book made me realize that it is in an intimate, conscious relationship where you will find the most growth, transformation, and substantial love. Your intimate relationships are a mirror of who you are. What you’re irritated by, jealous of, or scared about in your partner, is really a feeling towards yourself.

The one thing I got out of the book is:

I learned the concept of taking ownership and responsibility for how I feel and what I need. I am the one responsible for communicating to my intimate partner about what I need and in turn, use the mirroring technique to actively listen to him — a whole other magical individual with his own beliefs and backstories. I became more open and aware that we are two people in this conscious and beautiful relationship.

Who’s this book for?

This book is for anyone who wants to be in the realm of being a more conscious person in an intimate partnership.

‍2. Think and Grow Rich

This is one of the most influential books I’ve read in 2020. Written in 1937 by Napoleon Hill, it’s been raved about by thought leaders, psychologists, and coaches around the world. This is my introduction to manifesting career and money.

Oprah’s got a great definition of what manifestation is:

“Manifestation is bringing something tangible into your life through attraction and belief, i.e. if you think it, and it will come.”

Manifestation is more than just positive thinking, though. It requires visualizing and feeling what you want.

Think and Grow Rich is a formula on how to manifest a certain dollar amount you want to possess. With case studies and information on how your subconscious plays into the practice of manifesting, you will be able to give it a try yourself as you follow along the chapters.

I really like this quote from Jim Rohn that captures WHY it’s necessary to manifest money:

“Become a millionaire not for the million dollars, but for what it will make of you to achieve it.”

Along the way as you grow your income, you will find empowering resources and experience what you need to experience to become the person life makes you to be. You’ll expand your mind, your perspectives, and your skills to be the ideal person you aspire to become.

The one thing I got out of this book is:

The steps to manifesting my income, my career, and my life, is in my hands. We have the power to change our subconscious, and to change our story and limiting beliefs through discipline and practice. It is not impossible. I manifested my dream job in 3 weeks and you can, too.

Who is this book for?

For those who want to unlock their subconscious mind to manifest their ideal self and life.

3. ‍Creative Confidence

This book is one of the reasons why I started to post content publicly. Written by David and Tom Kelley, the book argues that we need to create for the world and that creativity is truly within all of us.

They’re not talking about creativity in terms of painting, dance choreography, or even writing. It’s more than that. It’s thinking outside the box and having the confidence to share new ideas with others. It doesn’t matter if you’re an engineer, a surf instructor, a teacher — your creative thinking can help transform the workplace, the norm, and ultimately, the world.

I especially liked Chapter 2 and 4. What resonated with me was that I realized I have a lot of fear around judgment when I post my content publicly. I realized that the fear stopped me from contributing to the world. Most of all, I realized that I had identified myself solely with my creative work, putting myself at risk of taking things personally when my work is criticized or inflating my ego when my work is praised. After reading this book, I discovered that my creative work does not define me.

The one thing I got out of this book is:

When I fail, it’s not the end of me. When I fail, it’s an indicator — even an opportunity, to explore other avenues to reach my desired outcome.

Who is this book for?

For those who want to unleash their creativity for the benefit of contributing to the world.

‍4. A New Earth

Eckhart Tolle’s “A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose” was nothing short of mind-blowing. My therapist introduced me to this book and has asked me to re-read it a couple of times to let the concepts fully sink in.

“A New Earth” opened my eyes to the concept of accepting what I’m feeling in the present moment. As human beings, it’s natural to feel anger, jealousy, insecurity, fear, or pain. I forget that I’m allowed to feel my emotions and so I suppress emotions quite often, causing more harm than good for myself and others.

I’m still practicing the art of acceptance when it comes to my feelings — even when they are a little messy. A quote from the book still resonates with me everyday:

“Life will give you whatever experience is most helpful for the evolution of your consciousness. How do you know this is the experience you need? Because this is the experience you’re having at this moment.

The one thing I got out of this book is:

We are allowed to feel the pain, anger, insecurity, jealousy, and whatever emotions we might experience. I learned that staying present with our emotions is the best way to heal ourselves.

Who is this book for?

For those who want to go one step deeper in their conscious living and step into the realm of spirituality.

5. C‍rucial Conversations

A crucial conversation is “a discussion between two or more people where (1) stakes are high, (2) opinions vary, and (3) emotions run strong.”

A crucial conversation will pop up in ANY relationship you have — with work colleagues, intimate partners, family members… even your neighbour.

“We pulled an all-nighter at work and you didn’t even come by when you said would.”

“Why did you leave all the utensils in the sink instead of finishing all the dishes?”

“Hey mom.. I don’t think I want to go to grad school anymore.”

Any time differing or controversial opinions come into play, things can either take a turn for the worst, or go smoothly.

And this is why I am heavily recommending this book. Our lives are filled with interacting with others as we develop and grow as individuals, so… we need this book. “Crucial Conversations” has actionable, comprehensive steps to practice over and over again so we can stay mindful with the right intentions during hard conversations with others.

The book talks about taking ownership of your emotions, separating the facts from your stories, inviting open dialogue, creating safety, and more. The necessary tools we need in our toolkit to connect and understand one another. Honestly, we should’ve learned this in school.

The one thing I got out of this book is:

By understanding which silence or violence behaviour I automatically turn to in difficult conversations, I was able to practice safer communication in real relationships. Now, I practice the concept of making sure everyone feels safe to contribute to the dialogue in hard conversations.

Who is this book for?

For those who communicate. Everyone should read this.

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These books were transformational for me and I hope they will be nothing short of extraordinary for you. Let’s start 2021 off strong together.

Originally published at

into ux design, reading books and telling stories

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