Yes! It’s April! (Or it will be next week, anyway…) I’m so excited to share my books to read in April list with you guys!
April means flowers are blooming and spring is straggling to its feet. It means warmer days and longer nights. And spring cleaning! Is there anything better than spring cleaning?
Okay, maybe spring cleaning isn’t the best (unless you’re Marie Kondo), but spring is a great time to start anew…new wardrobe, clean environment, and a better you.
Last Year, I Did a “Better Me” Project on My Blog in April
I set precepts every day to follow on my quest to be a “better me”. April seemed like the perfect time to be reborn, so to speak. So in keeping with that idea….
My Theme for Books to Read in April is…Self-Help Books
I hear you groaning from over there. Believe me, I get it. Until last year, I would have never in a million years read a self-help book. In fact, I wouldn’t even read any non-fiction unless I was forced to for work or class or something.
But once I read a few books about having a better outlook on life and taking control of my feelings, I started to enjoy them. And most of the ones I read have not been traditional “self-help” books, but rather, “living a better you” kind of book.
So My Books to Read in April 2019 List Will Not Be the Traditional Type of Books I (and Probably You) Read
But I took a lot of time picking them out, I wanted to encompass several types of writers and styles, along with a medley of topics. So here they are, my books to read in April 2019 list, in no particular order.
Calm the F*ck Down by Sarah Knight
Okay, yup…I’m really starting out the gate with a bang with my list. I saw this book and I HAD to get it. This book is about “how to control what you can and accept what you can’t so you can stop freaking out and get on with your life”.
First of all, this book screamed to be taken home to my daughter. She is an almost fourteen year old on her way to high school in a few month and she freaks out about EVERYTHING. Not only do I want to read this, I want HER to read this. You know, so she can calm the f*ck down. I tell her to do that on a regular basis. And she doesn’t listen. But maybe if some one else told her that…
Anyway, I leafed through this book in the library and it looked hysterical…but helpfully hysterical. I think we could all do with a little calming down, especially those of us with anxiety. So…I hope this book is as promising as I think it will be. My daughter is already on page 20 and she is enjoying it so far.
It’s Not Supposed to Be This Way by Lysa Terkeurst
Disappointment. It’s pretty much the story of all of our lives. All of us can recount a time when things were supposed to happen one way, but ended up happening another way…much to our dismay.
In fact, it seems to occur this way over and over and over again. Which is something I’ve tried to explain to my kids, but at the same time, I don’t want them to get the impression that it’s not worth following through with anything because of being afraid of disappointment.
What’s most important is the way we react to disappointment. That’s what is imperative to learn. And it’s never too late to learn, either. When you have a better reaction, it sets you up for a more positive outcome.
The only thing that I must add as a caveat to this book is that I see the author talks about God a lot. I am not a religious person at all, but I am generally not bothered by reading books by religious authors (as long as it has a purpose in the writing and isn’t just shoving religion down your throat). If you are bothered by that sort of thing, I would steer clear of this book.
Happiness is a Choice You Make by John Leland
This may not necessarily be classified as “self-help” in the traditional sense of the word. I heard about this book on a podcast with Gretchen Rubin. She’s the author of The Happiness Project. Reading that book last year was one of my inspirations to start my “Better Me” project (along with You Are a Badass).
Anyway, the author John Leland, interviewed and followed the lives of six New Yorkers that were over the age of eighty-five. He captured the wisdom of these “oldest-old” individuals and compiled it into this book.
I think while it’s not traditional self help, the wisdom of elders can certainly help us become better people. Or at least, can help us to reevaluate our lives and become better versions of ourselves. I’m very excited to start reading this book and get a fresh perspective on life.
Grit by Angela Duckworth
Okay people have been trying to get me to read this book for quite a few years now. Initially I was planning to read it—the premise seemed interesting to me. Yet, at that point in time, I was still pretty adverse to the whole “non-fiction”/”self-help” genre.
So I put this on my TBR list and promptly forgot about it.
But recently, I was listening to a podcast where they mentioned the book (I can’t remember which one, sorry) and I was reminded that I wanted to read it. So I got it out from the library in hopes that what I discover in this book can give me some tools to help my struggling thirteen year old.
As I mentioned earlier, she’s struggling with anxiety and self-doubt (as most teens are). Hers is crippling at times, and I am desperately searching for a book, a podcast…something can inspire her to keep pushing forward…even in the face of adversity. Hopefully, Grit will be that book.
Kind is the New Classy by Candace Cameron Bure
What teenage girl growing up in the 80s and 90s didn’t want to be like DJ Tanner? The clothes, the peppy attitude…that hair. I probably would have gratefully lopped off my left big toe to have that hair.
Anyway, fast forward twenty or so years and Candace Cameron is all grown up and married and STILL perfect. So what’s her secret? According to her newest book, it’s Kindness.
Kindness???? What a novel concept! But it’s what Cameron Bure credits her success and her ability to stay centered and empowered to.
I have to admit, of all the “self-help” books I plan to read, this has me the most curious. If it is that simple, if kindness is all we need to live a good life, than sign me up. Sure, it’ll be difficult to break my resting bitch face (and accompanying resting bitch attitude), but isn’t the saying, you’ll catch more flies with honey? Maybe it’s true. Maybe DJ Tanner is on to something. And maybe it’ll be easier to do than I think.
But first, let me read this book and get back to you on that…