Traditional school was never my "thing." Learning, however, was always something I was interested in. As most people, I enjoy learning about things that interest me. While I succeeded at my primary years doing relatively well in traditional school, large college classrooms were another story. “Disaster” would be a nice way of describing my 18-21 year old self. When I finally buckled down, picked a major, and graduated, my average GPA was a joke. If you think I was worried about those transcripts, you have another thing coming. I had a winning personality and my wits about me. Could I rattle off the periodic table? No. Could I talk to you about actual business and grit? Yep. I was gritty from early on. And that was not something I learned in traditional school. Let me introduce you to my top 10 self-improvement books. They are much more exciting than knowing what the light of speed is, at least to me.
Writing out my goals for the year. Reading is on there!
Moving Right Along to Georgia
At 24 years old, I packed up and moved to Atlanta, GA to be closer to my then-boyfriend. I just knew I had to get out of New Orleans, where I had lived pretty much my whole life. The city was stale, and I was restless. Growth and opportunity felt right, and that was my time to shine. Somehow I landed a job at IBM (remember that winning personality I mentioned?), and when they did finally get my transcripts after my delaying, they told me I was on probation. Did I care? Nope. I knew my thirst for work was exponentially bigger than for sitting my ass in a class. Guess what? I ended up getting Rookie of the Year. How do you like them apples? I was on the fast track to my definition of success. My world was being rocked by some super smart people, and I loved every second of it.
My First Experience with Self-Improvement Books
Mentors were enlisted (by me) all throughout my career at IBM, and I had people asking me to move all over the country to work on their team. Las Vegas was where I had my eye on the prize, and I left IBM to move there. I got married to a Brazilian guy and had the worst time of my life navigating marriage. We couldn’t speak each other’s language, and decided therapy was the best route. It’s where I read my first “self-improvement” book, called The Dance of Anger
. It set me on a path to work on myself, because we all know that depending on someone else to change is nothing but a waste of time. The road was rocky for years, I’m not married to said Brazilian anymore, but I did remarry and have found my groove with life for the most part. It’s a roller coaster, so let's enjoy the ride!
The Black Sheep Gets the Character
Through the last decade or so,I have become kind of obsessed with growth. Maybe I like to grow my mind so much because I come from a family that values staying the same way too much for my comfort. I always felt different, like the proverbial black sheep (of which title I carry enthusiastically and proudly). Carrying on unhealthy traditions is not how I wanted to live my life, and my family seems to excel at that. Reading self-improvement books is something that I have incorporated into my daily routine, as my life has been lived in between various crises. Just being honest.
Serious About that Reading
The Trifecta of Successful Growth: Books, Podcasts, Therapy
Between book reading and podcasts (and let’s not leave out therapy), I have drastically improved how I move about this world, and how I think. My brain has become my best tool for leveling up in my life. It’s powerful, interesting, and creative. Oh, how I wish I would’ve known this earlier. It may have saved me so many valuable learning experiences. You don't know what you don't know, though. When I found out I do not know as much as I want to know, I asked my “book teachers” - AKA authors - to impart all their life wisdom on me. They have done a splendid job, if I do say so myself. As it goes, here are my top 10 self-improvement books that I recommendation. And yes, I’ve read them all and incorporate pieces of each into my everyday life. Every.Single.Day.
You’re Paying for the Self-Improvement Books - Read Them!
The best part about reading is that if you simply join your local library, which is FREE...ish. You can have literary genius at your fingertips at no charge to you. Except if you pay taxes, which I hope you do, and then you’re paying for it anyway. As in, you’re paying for the library. Use it. Or buy the books. The ones I listed above even have a link to my affiliate account on Amazon, so you can support me if you want to buy one there. Either way, reading these top 10 self-improvement books has been one of the most profound tools for change, growth, and mindset. I kind of love myself in ways that I didn’t know I could. And I’m really proud of myself. Don't you want to feel that way about yourself? I want every single person I meet or know to feel the same way. Bad news: it takes work, effort, grit. Good news: it’s worth it.
My Favorite Reading Place with One of My Favorite Reading Buddies
Whatever your level is right now and feelings are towards books, I encourage you to read one more sentence, one more paragraph, or one more chapter each day. I'm stealing this idea from Ed Mylett! You might even find that it’s hard to stop because the book is just that good. And if you don’t want to dive head-first into the self-improvement world, read something fun to start. Something you know you’ll simply enjoy. If you’re anything like me, though, you’ll want to be learning about yourself, and reading improvement books is a great way to get there. So what do you say? Buy yourself a book, or check one out from the library, get your emotional support pets, and curl up with a nice cup of who-the-hell-am-I??….I’m-reading-a-book! I can't wait to talk to you about everything you've learned.