When I was putting together this list of books to inspire my 2016, I kept in mind a few of my priorities for this year: growing this blog, growing and expanding my business and managing my time better. It took me quite some time to do my research and pick the books that seemed right for me, but now that the list is complete, I'm beyond excited to dive in, take copious notes and implement all the lessons learned along the way.
And per usual, I would love to know: do you have any books that influenced positively your life and that you would recommend?
Sophia Amoruso: #Girlboss. This book has been all the rage among bloggers for the past two years, but somehow I never got around to reading it, until now. From a school dropout committing petty theft and taking random jobs for health insurance, Sophia moved on to build the Nasty Gal empire, a company worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Sharing her story and her own nuggets of wisdom gleaned along the way, she demonstrates how you can find your own unique path to success. Even if it's one that's windy and lined with naysayers.
Hal Elrod: Miracle morning. You may have already heard that plenty of successful people wake up well before sunrise, and use those quiet hours to work on their passion projects or to truly focus without interruptions on work issues in need of solving. I myself have always been a morning person, but I've never really thought of ways my morning routine could influence and change my life and my success. This book is supposed to do just that: show us how to wake up each day with more energy, motivation and focus to make things happen.
Jen Sincero: You are a badass. Besides having the most kick-ass title of them all, this book is also marketed as the self-help book for people who desperately want to improve their lives but don't want to get busted doing it. Its purpose is to help you identify and change the self-sabotaging thoughts and belief, and create a life you will love. Filled with blunt and sassy no-nonsense advice, it's both inspiring and fun.
Greg McKeown: Essentialism, The disciplined pursuit of less. There are three questions to ask yourself first:
1. Gave you ever stretched yourself too thin?
2. Do you simultaneously feel overworked and underutilized?
3. Are you often busy, but not productive?
Way too often, my answer to these questions is a resounding yes. That's why I guess (and hope) that this book could be useful for me. It's not a book about getting more done in less time. It's about getting only the right things done, through discerning what is essential, and discarding the clutter (especially the mental one).
Lewis Howes: The school of greatness. I'm not a regular reader of Lewis' blog, but when I stumble upon it every now and then, it's always chock-full of no-nonsense and inspiring advice. In his book, Lewis shares the essential tips and habits for successful life he gathered in interviewing his "heroes" and mentors on his podcast. His basic premise is that greatness is cultivated from within, and that success has nothing to do with luck or good fortune. Motivating, right?
Steven Pressfield: Do the work. There is one question present throughout all Pressfield's books on creativity: Could you be getting in your way of producing great work? Or, in different words, is your resistance preventing you from finishing the work you have started? And how do you even recognize the work that truly matters? I think these are the questions any creative person asks at one point or another. And Pressfield may have the answer: instead of waiting for great ideas to just happen, you have to start actually doing the work. Beat the resistance. Take action. This books is your roadmap for taking your project from Page one to The End.
Camille Styles: Entertaining. If I should pick just one coffee table book to save from a burning house, it would be this one. Camille is my favorite blogger ever, and my most trusted source of inspiration. I know that whenever I'm in need of a little bit of inspiration in food, entertaining, healthy living or life in general, I can always turn to her. And because life shouldn't be all about work and hustle, I have Camille to remind me to celebrate the everyday moments and live my life as stylishly as possible.
Brené Brown: Daring greatly. Being vulnerable isn't something we're encouraged to do these days. In the present culture of "bigger, better, stronger and more, always more", admitting our fears and doubts may seem really intimidating. Putting ourselves out there is risky. But avoiding fear and vulnerability altogether can prevent us from achieving our goals and really hurt us in the long run. This book is about finding your courage within your vulnerability, and that is definitely something I should learn how to do.
Chris Guillebeau: The $100 startup. Chris is here to prove that in order to build a successful business, you don't have to quit your day job, take a huge loan and plunge into the unknown, hoping for the best. You can start small, commit a little bit of money and some more time, and wait to be sure it would be successful before making the leap. This book is full of advice from people who were able to turn their passions into profitable businesses, and the most important would be "in the battle between planning and action, action wins."
Danielle Laporte: The Fire starter sessions. This is supposed to be THE book to give you the right kick in the pants when you feel overwhelmed (me), unsure of your next step (me) and stuck (me, me, me). It will walk you through defining your vision, managing your fear of failure to finally making things that truly matter happen.
Jocelyn K. Glei: Manage your day to day. I'm all about productivity these days. Time (alongside my health) is my most precious resource, and I would love to be able to use it more wisely, and to my best advantage. There are days when I feel like a dog chasing its tail - working my butt off, only to realize at the end of the day that I haven't accomplished the most important tasks on my list. This book is a compilation of advice from some of the most creative minds (like Leo Babauta or Seth Godin), and I'm hoping to glean as many nuggets of wisdom on using my time better as possible.
Brian Tracy: Eat that frog. This is the ultimate book for my procrastinating self. I'm forever striving to do more with my time, fit more things in my schedule, but I'm not really sure this is the best approach to take. Probably not. What's good about this book is that it doesn't dwell on explaining the psychology of procrastination - it gets right to the action and explains all the steps you can take every day to become more productive.