Where would you be without support in your life? Maybe you have just begun dabbling in what it feels like to let your guard down and be truly supported. Maybe you are a seasoned giver and receiver of healthy support. We are all different in the ways we ask for and take in support. We are all strong and independent women AND we all need connection and support to thrive.
I used to think needing support meant I was weak, that I should be able to do it all by myself and I was the only one capable of doing it right anyway. I also didn't want to be a burden on anyone. I didn't think I was worth the time and energy others would have to spend on me to help. Moreover, if they DID help me, then I would owe them something somehow. It was a very lonely way to live.
Through my healing journey I have learned that asking for support (from the right people) is actually giving them a gift. Every time I've ever been supported or given support, both people benefit. Over the years I have been supported by a cornucopia of fantastic people, organizations and books. The books have been forefront on my mind lately as it's been cold out and I've been spending more time inside reading (and re-reading some of my favorites). Some of these are very popular. Others are a little more obscure, but they've all been powerful for me. So, this week I made a list of my top eight favorite eye-opening, jaw-dropping, game-changing, life-shifting, hallelujah-praising, empowerment books. I hope a few might be helpful for you.
My 8 Favorite Life-Changing Books:
Playing Big by Tara Mohr - This incredibly empowering book uses spirituality, psychology and even a little history to offer practical ways of understanding, meeting and exceeding the challenges of being a woman in today's society by EMBRACING the feminine, not suppressing it. It also includes amazing insights on how to effectively communicate with our inner critics and how to cultivate our inner mentors.
The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron - One need not be an artist to benefit from this book. All humans are creative and this is about recovering those lost creative parts. It shows how cultivating creativity helps us move past the paralysis of perfectionism. This is the book that helped me get over my fierce resistance to and judgment around journaling.
Daring Greatly by Brene Brown Ph.D. - Brene Brown is the expert on shame and vulnerability. I love her analogy of being and living IN the arena. The book contains mind blowing insights to our human behavior due to the shame epidemic and societal expectations. It, then, offers gentle and practical life exercises to help us recognize, move through and let go.
Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda - This is the book that brought me back to spirituality after having given up everything God related due to the closed-minded religions of my childhood. It's a dense, fascinating and entertaining explanation of the Science of Spirituality.
A Return to Love by Marianne Williamson - I love this heart-opener! Based on the author's reflections on A Course In Miracles teachings. Her writing is down to earth, direct, and simple. It's all about Love.
The Energy of Money by Maria Nemeth, Ph.D. - For years I thought money and spirituality were mutually exclusive. They aren't. This book contains incredibly powerful exercises to help us flush out what's really important, unearth some of our unconscious beliefs about money and life and then use that energy for our good.
Flirting with Danger by Lynn Phillips - Fascinating research and insight into how females are socialized around gender, relationships, sexuality, and power. Empowering and healing information for any woman who has experienced sexual trauma, assault or abuse.
The Ethical Slut by Dossie Easton and Janet Hardy - Although a good chunk of this book is dedicated to the 'how-to' of having an open relationship, the vital and most empowering part for me was the fresh insight around what each person's responsibilities are in ANY healthy relationship. Honesty, ownership and boundaries, we'll find, are the antithesis to co-dependency.
There you have it! I would love, love, love to hear from you about these books or any other books that have changed your life. Please share them in the comments below. Peace! Jacque
Jacque Saltsman is a Healer and Life Coach who is committed to the empowerment and healing of women locally and globally. Jacque has attended and staffed the Woman Within Training Weekend and sits in an amazing E-circle in her hometown of Louisville, Kentucky. She can be found at jacquesaltsman.com.