The KonMari Method of Tidying Books

I love books. My favorite job ever was a student job working in the library at the University of Rhode Island (probably because I never worked a shift more than a few hours long), and my favorite task was taking a cart of books to be filed on the peaceful upper floors.

I still love going to bookstores and libraries, even though I usually get books online now. The library has seriously come a long way in a few short years in their ebook and audiobook offerings.

Still, it’s nice to keep a small collection of books that were purchased during the years of reading books not on electronic devices. I am not a huge re-reader of books, so the bookcase is more for decoration and the happy feeling it gives me to look over at it than functional. continue…

Book Nook Review: Co-creating at Its Best

“You are powerful creators, you see. You’re not facers of reality. You’re creators of reality.” – Co-creating at its Best by Wayne Dyer and Esther Hicks

I jump at any opportunity to read a Wayne Dyer book. Co-creating at Its Best: A Conversation Between Master Teachers by Wayne Dyer and Esther Hicks is a transcript of a live event that they held in Anaheim, CA in 2013. The book is very short, less than 200 pages.

This book is a conversation between Wayne Dyer and “Abraham” of Esther and Jerry Hicks fame. For those who are unfamiliar, Esther Hicks is a channel for a collection of entities referred to as “Abraham” who speak through her.

After reading my first book by Esther Hicks, Ask and It Is Given (also Teachings of Abraham), I was excited to finally understand what this whole Abraham thing is all about. While some may find it “weird”, I find it quite pleasant and comforting. I was very excited to read a collaboration between two major spiritual influencers on the planet today. continue…

Book Nook Review: Ask and It Is Given

“Pay attention to the way you feel, and deliberately choose thoughts – about everything – that feel good to you when you think them.” – Ask and It Is Given, by Esther and Jerry Hicks

If you have ever felt a negative emotion and wished there was a way to train yourself to get out of that place, and either enjoy or at least tolerate metaphysical discussion, this book is certainly for you!

Ask and It Is Given: Learning to Manifest Your Desires by Esther and Jerry Hicks (The Teachings of Abraham) was sitting on a shelf in an adorable little bookstore called Kate’s Books in Jerome, Arizona. This shop is basically an attic turned used bookstore, and the owner was peacefully crocheting squares for an afghan when we visited.

We were in Jerome for my birthday weekend in January, and it seemed like the perfect book to enjoy in the bathtub (which I did for a good part of the next day!).

At the time, I had only cursory awareness of Ester and Jerry Hicks and “The Teachings of Abraham.” What does that even mean? I had heard about Esther Hicks from a friend several years ago, so I had watched a few videos of her on YouTube. I still didn’t get it.

I will keep this explanation brief and let you decide for yourself: Esther Hicks claims to be a channel for “Abraham” which is an entity from the “beyond” that speaks through her.

And that is all I am going to say, because I don’t think I can really explain it without sounding crazy myself (which I assure you I am not). Regardless, I loved the book and am excited to share all the positive messages. Here we go! continue…

Book Nook Review: Loving Yourself to Great Health

“Everything is thoughts and food.”

Paleo, vegan, vegetarian, raw vegan, low carb, gluten free…which diet is THE ONE?

Did you ever consider your thoughts to be equally as important as diet and exercise in the equation of your optimal health? Loving Yourself to Great Health: Thoughts & Food–The Ultimate Diet by Louise Hay, Ahlea Khadro, & Heather Dane teaches that our health hinges on our thoughts. I couldn’t agree more.

If this is all too metaphysical for you, no one can deny that before doing anything we almost always think a thought (or a string of thoughts) first. Before going for a walk, eating a piece of pizza, making a green smoothie, drinking a coffee…there is a thought that precedes the action. From a very practical standpoint, it makes perfect sense that our thoughts influence how we look and feel.

The first part of the book spends a lot of time on the subject of loving ourselves, something that isn’t exactly emphasized in our culture as the most important, most basic component of our human power. Although it certainly is!

“Most of us have not been taught to listen to our bodies and inner wisdom, so we don’t trust it.”

I never really understood what intuition was, not believing that I could have some supernatural power to predict the future or know if the decision I made was right or wrong. I have a feeling that taking the time to develop a strong sense of personal intuition at a young age would spare a lot of people a lot of pain and heartache. Not to mention save a lot of time spent doing things that don’t feel right.

Listening to our bodies, asking our bodies what they need and then really listening, is a foreign concept for most. Some might say it is downright kooky. But that is exactly what this book calls us to do. continue…

Feel Good Financial Planning: Money, A Love Story by Kate Northrup

“To have a good relationship with money, you must know who you are and what your purpose is in this world.” – Money, a Love Story by Kate Northrup

Organize your life. Sounds like it should be so simple, right? But to reclaim our own attention and time for long enough to make progress in the areas that we feel called to can be more challenging than it sounds.

Money, A Love Story by Kate Northrup takes a spiritual approach to deal with the practical aspects of achieving personal freedom. I read this book concurrently with The Motivation Manifesto by Brendon Burchard (as much as I try to read only one book at a time, sometimes I just can’t help myself!).

This was a perfect self-help book pairing. The Motivation Manifesto gears us up to claim our personal freedom, while Kate Northup provides practical tips for taking steps to ensure that the financial foundation is in place to live a truly free life.

Spiritual Finances

This book approaches personal finance from a spiritual perspective. Kate Northrup takes the spiritual principles we have read about in other self-help books, and applies them specifically to the process of creating financial freedom.

Money, A Love Story demystifies the whole concept of money that we humans have come up with. In its simplest form, money is a symbol of trading value for value. When we present our earned money to the world, we are exchanging it for something that we are assigning value to. Likewise, when we earn money, we are being valued for the services we provide to the world.

Kate Northrup authentically opens up about her own financial path of going into credit card debt and finding her way out through the spiritual process she shares in this book.

What You Will Learn

This book taught me to provide value to the world in a way that makes me feel good while helping other people. I learned that working in a stressed out, frantic, chaotic manner, something I once mistakenly believed others value, is not making the world a better place. So, what’s the point? I now refuse to provide value while feeling stressed out or devalued. I simply refuse!

Here are a few more money lessons: continue…

Book Nook Review: Motivation Manifesto by Brendon Burchard

Ever feel like you need someone to sit you down and give you a pep talk to supercharge your life into action? Reading The Motivation Manifesto by Brendon Burchard is kind of like that. Squared. Cubed, even.

“We must ask if our desires to feel safe and accepted are in fact enslaving us to popular opinion—and to boredom.”

If you ever felt like you were destined for a greater existence but felt conflicted or overwhelmed about taking the necessary actions, this book is so for you. You might want to stop reading here and go get a copy to see for yourself. It is that good. continue…

Book Nook Review: Walking with Elijah

“The life journeys of humans are not random.” – Elijah, in Walking with Elijah: The Fable of a Life Journey and a Fulfilled Soul by Doobie Shemer

Shamanism is one of those practices with which most people are unfamiliar. I was one of them before reading Walking with Elijah by Doobie Shemer.

Doobie Shemer is a corporate computer software engineer-turned-shaman after an Introduction to Shamanism workshop. What is shamanism, you ask? continue…

Be Yourself to Be Successful

It is no secret that Lea Michele has made a permanent name for herself over the past few years. Sure, you could attribute her success to luck and being in the right place at the right time. Or, you could choose to believe that she has achieved her success in life based on her dedication to remaining true to herself and her dreams despite the disappointments, non-believers, and self-doubt that are inevitable along any path to success.

Being a self-proclaimed Gleek, I was ecstatic when I saw that Lea Michele had a book out. It was an extra indulgent treat to listen to her read her own words in her upbeat voice on Audible.

Brunette Ambition starts out with a brief look at a young, pre-Glee Lea Michele and a glimpse into her home life. The beginning few chapters of the book are full of inspirational messages about being ourselves and embracing our uniqueness rather than trying to washout and be like everyone else. continue…

Don’t Die with Your Music Still in You

“When we hide who we really are in order to fit in or belong, we are suffocating our souls.” Serena Dyer

Would you like to start leading a more meaningful life today, but sometimes struggle with balancing “real life” and following the seemingly complex spiritual principles out there? If so, Don’t Die with Your Music Still in You: My Experience Growing Up with Spiritual Parents by Serena Dyer is for you!

Spiritual Technology

Don’t Die with Your Music Still in You is Serena Dyer’s recount of what it was like to grow up under the spiritual parenting of Marcelene and Wayne Dyer. Serena shares spiritual principles we read in Wayne Dyer’s books from her own perspective.

If Serena’s goal with this book was to take many of the spiritual teachings we have learned from her dad and relate them in a very practical way that we can incorporate into our lives immediately, she certainly succeeded! There is a light, easiness to reading her voice, and she breaks down the concept of living a life on purpose into its simplest components.

The main message I received from this book was to feel the feeling of what you want in your life as if you were already there. It can feel very confusing to do this, because what you want inside does not match what is outside (yet). continue…

Blogust Schedule at a Glance

Since I have committed myself to 30 more consecutive days of posting, I figured today would be a good time to plan out my posts for the month. I have been wanting to do this ever since I started blogging but never got a grip on the organization of my thoughts more than a few days in advance.

Themed Days

I have always liked the idea of posting based on specific themes on certain days of the week. This is how I came up with the idea for Meditation Mondays. Here is the general idea for my posting schedule during Blogust: continue…

Book Nook Review: Angels of Abundance by Doreen Virtue & Grant Virtue

“Positivity is the language of heaven.” – Angels of Abundance by Doreen Virtue and Grant Virtue

I have long believed that living life on purpose is the way to go. After reading countless self-help books, one thing is crystal clear: each individual person has a unique purpose in life that is waiting to be fulfilled.

I have struggled with anything that hasn’t felt purposeful. But I have also come to realize that we get to choose to assign purpose and meaning to those things that previously didn’t feel super purpose-filled, on the path towards living our dreams.

Doreen & Grant Virtue’s book Angels of Abundance: Heaven’s 11 Messages to Help You Manifest Support, Supply, and Every Form of Abundance is an excellent, practical guide on what it takes to live a life that was previously only imaginable. The thing I admire most about Doreen Virtue is that she doesn’t sugarcoat it; she never for one second pretends that it doesn’t take hard work and sacrifice to pull it off. continue…

Book Nook Review: I Can See Clearly Now by Wayne Dyer

“My life is my message.” – Gandhi

Ever feel like you don’t belong on the path your life seems to be on? Like there is a different path you’d rather hop on to? I Can See Clearly Now is Dr. Wayne Dyer’s personal reflection on the pivotal moments in his life that shaped him into the influential spiritual teacher he has been for many years. These moments were not all glamorous, but Dr. Dyer reflects on his past with nothing but gratitude for the lessons he takes away from even the most difficult situations. continue…

Book Nook Review: Assertiveness for Earth Angels by Doreen Virtue

“Your need for other people’s approval puts them in control of your happiness. No one deserves that power over you.”

Have you ever caught yourself using the word “sorry” excessively, talking too quickly so you don’t take up someone’s else’s precious time, or being a people-pleaser? When I first read the table of contents of Assertiveness for Earth Angels: How to Be Loving Instead of “Too Nice” by Doreen Virtue, I was tempted to skip ahead to a few of the chapters with my name on them. Not too far into the book I was wondering: how does Doreen Virtue know me so well? continue…

Book Nook Review of Forgiveness by Iyanla Vanzant

“Forgiveness is not an occasional act, it is a constant attitude.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.

I hadn’t thought of forgiveness as an essential component of moving forward until I read Forgiveness by Iyanla Vanzant. Since I selected this book to read, I have been hearing about the importance of forgiveness from other authors concurrent with my reading.

Iyanla Vanzant calls us to recognize all the places in our lives that we need to bring forgiveness to, beginning with ourselves. The book is intended to be worked in exercises to be completed during 30 to 60 minutes on each of 21 days. The work of each day focuses on extending forgiveness to practically every type of relationship we could possibly have.

Each chapter starts out with a “forgiveness story” written by either Iyanla Vanzant or a guest writer. These stories provide personal examples from the writers’ own lives, describing how they came to realize their need to forgive others who they had spent energy resenting. Following each chapter’s forgiveness story are the forgiveness exercises.

The forgiveness exercises begin with a forgiveness prayer, followed by an exercise of writing personalized forgiveness statements tailored to the individual reader’s unique forgiveness needs in their own relationships, all leading up to the tapping sequences. Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT, or tapping)  can be thought of as acupuncture sans-needles, according to Vanzant. The idea in this case is to tap (with your fingers) on specific meridian points to clear out blocked energy attributed to negative thoughts born of unforgiveness. continue…

Book Review: You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay

“I am as close to changing my life as my current positive thought.” – Louise Hay

Love yourself. Easier said than done, but that is the basic call to action you will be left with after reading You Can Heal Your Life.

Life really is so simple, claims Louise Hay. We overcomplicate the whole thing, even when we set about the seemingly simplistic task of attempting to love ourselves.

The premise of You Can Heal Your Life is that our outer lives are a direct reflection of our thoughts. This was the big message of the movie The Secret, and permeates the genre of self-help books. Ms. Hay teaches that loving ourselves and the willingness to forgive are essential prerequisites to seeing the changes we imagine in our lives. continue…

Meditation Mondays: Book Nook Review of Love Your Enemies

I came across a book that seemed interesting, and was pleasantly surprised to discover that this book could not be more fitting for a Meditation Monday!

“You can become conscious of what you were formerly unconscious of.” – Love Your Enemies, by Sharon Salzberg and Tenzin Robert Thurman

Love Your Enemies: How to Break the Anger Habit & Be a Whole Lot Happier by Sharon Salzberg and Tenzin Robert Thurman reaffirms that we hold within us the power to create our own happiness. Loving our enemies is about more than finding a way to feel love for bullies. It is about wishing love and happiness for everyone, including ourselves. continue…

Review of The Radical Practice of Loving Everyone by Michael Chase

Dogs have a unique way of communicating directly with out hearts and souls. The Radical Practice of Loving Everyone by Michael J. Chase is a personal account of one man’s spiritual journey toward enlightenment, guided by his mischievous yet wise poodle, Mollie. continue…