9 Self-help books that actually help

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9 self help books

I love reading books, though between family, friends, work and time for myself, time is limited and I can’t afford to waste it. Are you in a similar position? Whether you are or have all the time in the world, your time is still valuable. You can’t afford to read books that waste your time.

I have had the blessing of reading some really helpful books focussed on very different areas of life from spirituality to physical aspects of how the mummy brain works and thought I’d share them with you so you can decide whether it is worth your time. AND I just want to reiterate, I love these books and happily recommend them to others all the time.

  1. The Reality Slap by Dr Russ Harris
    The Reality Slap
    Ok, while the others are in no particular order, this has to be my favourite go-to book all the time. Dr Russ Harris specialises in ACT  (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy) and built ACT Mindfully. I attended the Introductory training a few years ago which went over 3 years. I bought this book just before I went for lunch on the first day and I finished it on the 3rd day. I couldn’t put it down (though obviously did for the training). What I was pleasantly surprised about was that Dr Russ Harris writes as he speaks so I could hear him speaking through the book in the same way as he was teaching in the training. Though, that doesn’t explain the benefit of the book. This book addresses those sucky situations where you can’t change the details. Situations like divorce, infidelity, death, betrayal – basically situations where you can’t change without a time machine. People talk about just thinking positively, though it isn’t so simple. The Reality Slap takes you through an easy to understand-process of working through the barriers in your mind to accept what you can’t change and commit to what you can. There are exercises built in throughout the book for you to use which is great to break up the amount of information you take in. Talk about a transformational book! Please note, it is not a magic wand, you will still experience pain and grief, though you will be able to live with pain and grief without it taking over your life, better than that, you will be able to grow and flourish with it.
  2. The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren
    The Purpose Driven Life
    I love books that walk you through practical steps as you read it. I’m the kind of person who needs to apply info as soon as I learn it, and this book does exactly that.
    Rick has an amazing ability to walk through the various intricacies of life as though he were speaking directly to me. The exercises are relevant and easy to use, throughout you get a real deep understanding of how to live a life of purpose that God planned for you right from the beginning.
  3. The Oxytocin Factor by Kerstin Uvnäs-Moberg
    The oxytocin factor
    For the science geek to the Mum who wants to know what the heck happened to her brain after childbirth, this book is for you! I gave birth 15 months ago for my second baby (6 years after my first), and I continued working… and studying… and felt like I was going crazy. Why were things so difficult all of a sudden? Sure I was tired, and breastfeeding, though why was I struggling with emails that would take me two seconds to answer normally? Why was I struggling to explain concepts to people that usually I can do in my sleep?This book answered all my questions.

    Yes, it’s a bit technical and scientifically-wordy, though 4 months postpartum, struggling with all of the above and I still managed to feel reassured that I wasn’t going nuts.

  4. A Woman’s Secret to a Balanced Life by Lysa TerKeurst
    A womans secret to a balanced life
    I must admit, the flowery cover grabbed my interest as I was choosing what to use my birthday gift voucher on from my Mother-in-Law. Though I also really wanted to know what the secret was too. Lysa has a way with words, I love following her on Facebook with Proverbs 31 Ministries. Through this book, Lysa melodiously communicates peace and tranquillity in a practical sense that makes just logical sense.
    Admittedly, with love of practical application, Lysa meets my love for analogies in the form of weaving a picture that pieces together throughout the book, namely through a waterfall starting from God and flowing into every other aspect of life.
    Want to know the secret? Read this book!
  5. Wisdom in Leadership by Craig Hamilton
    Wisdom in leadership
    This is a down to earth, nuts and bolts book on leadership. Craig Hamilton is an experienced pastor who gets what is involved in leading others with integrity and authenticity. While I love flowery visuals and practical application, I am a sucker for down to earth approaches. Throughout this book, Craig explains that there is no biblical model of leadership, which opens up the option for us to be individuals. Oh, the freedom!
    We learn the values and application of leadership to consider, and this can translate into all walks of life whether you are a church leader, a team leader in a corporate setting, or a parent leading your family as they grow.
  6. The Father Heart of God by Floyd McClung
    The father heart of god
    Throughout this book, Floyd explores the relationship between our earthly father and God the Father. While easy to read, this revelatory journey has a transformational impact on your relationship with your Dad and with God as you start to see them for what they are as they are. Quite separate.

    Sharing personal stories of the testimonies of others who have been through this leg of the journey, this makes it easy to identify with and move towards a place of healing in your Christian walk.

  7. Toxic Mom Toolkit by Rayne Wolfe
    Toxic mom toolkit
    While our relationship with our earthly Dads has such a powerful impact on our lives, it is also true about our Mums. Rayne shares her own story in a powerful way. Through sharing the raw life journey of her own relationship with her mother, Rayne has also shared the hope of life beyond. The promise of enjoying life on your own terms without being swept up through the bitterness of hate towards the one person who is supposed to breathe life and love into your very being.
    Along with this journey of healing, many others share their raw and honest experiences of healing in the process. Though please note, a trigger warning is needed. Some experiences are incredibly painful and traumatic. Be sure to read when you are ready, in small doses if need be, and use those self-care practices you’ve been using to protect you.
  8. The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman
    5 love languages
    Ever wonder why you and your spouse just keep getting it all wrong? Like, you both have good intentions, though it keeps blowing up in your face?

    This book is a game changer when it comes to getting relationships back on the same page.Relationships need more than just love, they need communication to let the love be known!

  9. Family Ties that Bind by Ronald Richardson
    Family ties that bind
    Starting a family is easy, keeping it healthy is another ballgame entirely. To keep the oxygen flowing, it is really helpful to understand how families work as a system and an appreciation for how the family we grew up in have an impact on how our newer family works. Richardson has a captivating and easy to understand approach to the family system, explaining in ways that make sense which is great when you understand things on a visual level like I do.

    So if you are wanting to understand your family on a deeper level, adjust your approach or find ways to shake things up (in a good way!), then this book is for you!

 

I hope these books help you as much as they have helped me in my journey.

Have you read a book that has deepened your faith and life journey? Share in the comments! I would love to add to my collection!

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Addictions: What are they?

What to do when you feel stuck

Addictions are a growing issue that many people from all walks of life, deal with in one way or another. Addictions can be in any shape of form, from drugs and alcohol, pornography, internet, food, lack of food, exercise, people, and the list goes on.

It is also quite often that people will develop more than one form of addiction which can feel overwhelming and out of control, while some, more so myself, will admit to having an addictive personality (not to be confused with people being addicted to my personality!), in which we exert some self-control by not engaging with certain things that we know we will get hooked on.

Dealing with multiple addictions can feel like living in an incredibly messy house – where to start? The task at hand just feels insurmountable and that there is no point to even try to tidy up, because one person can only do so much on our own.

Let’s look at what addictions actually are. They are a defence mechanism that we develop over time to take away the pain we are feeling, to drown out the messages we don’t want to accept. It starts off small, a house doesn’t get messy overnight, we believe we have things under control – then realisation sets in years later, if at all!

Personally, I would feel like setting fire to the house, though for some reason I would hate to let it go – a really confusing feeling! Why would I want to hang on to such a messy place?

Because it is my place.

Mine! 

That will never change.

Same with addictions, the addiction is the mess, the house is us – our identity is not shaped by our addictions, our addictions hide our true value.

Let me re-frame this concept: we develop addictions because we are valuable.

As highlighted above, addictions are defence mechanisms, defence mechanisms are engaged to protect something that is worth defending – you would not be defending yourself if you did not believe you have value.

Now, I am certainly not advocating for the use of addictions, there are healthier defence mechanisms we can develop to protect ourselves, and at the same time enjoy the serenity of a clean house.

This process only needs to happen one step at a time and a bit of help goes a long way. See here for helpful services or feel free to contact me to develop an action plan.

Remember, the mess wouldn’t be here in the first place if you didn’t see some self-worth in you.

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