#1 Zen Bender: A Decade-Long Enthusiastic Quest to Fix Everything (That Was Never Broken)
The Author: Stephanie Krikorian is a New York Times bestselling ghost-writer, an Emmy-nominated reality television creator, and an executive producer.
What it’s about: If you are looking for a self-help quick fix, then this book is for you. The author, who previously did ghost-writing for many self-help books for big celebrities as well as ordinary women, eventually wrote one on her own about how to reinvent one’s life.
The mantra: Stephanie says, “Oprah created a mantra: ‘Live your best life.’ Which surely meant I wasn’t living mine. None of us were, presumably. Just a big world full of humans not living up to our potential.”
What others say about the book: “Inspiring and hilarious, Zen Bender perfectly captures our misguided quest for perfection, as well as Stephanie’s amazing spirit. I face the same daily struggles, so her writing really hit home with me, as I’m sure it will with everyone who has tried (and laughed about) all the fixes out there.”
Patricia Velasquez, author of “Straight Walk” and UNESCO Artist for Peace.
#2 The Happiness Project: Or Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean my Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun
The Author: Gretchen Rubin is a five-time NYT bestselling author, speaker, podcaster, and creator of the four tendencies of framework.
What it’s about: Rubin’s Happiness Project is a massive record of observations from her own life and facts based on the latest scientific research. Giving insights on how to be happy, this book stayed on top of New York Times bestselling list for more than two years and was translated into more 30 languages.
The famous epiphany: It was a rainy afternoon and Gretchen was riding a bus when she suddenly thought: “The days are long, but the years are short. Time is passing, and I’m not focusing enough on the things that really matter.” That’s when she decided to do a year-long happiness project and document it.
What others say about the book: “The Happiness Project largely focuses on Gretchen’s own experience applying mountains of classic advice on happiness (from Thoreau to Epicurus to the Dalai Lama to Oprah) to see what actually worked – and what didn’t. It’s mostly written in a memoir form covering a single year in which she applied these ideas, which works really well for the material covered (and makes it engaging to read).”
The Simple Dollar
#3 The Universe Has Your Back: Transform Fear to Faith
The Author: Gabrielle Bernstein is an American motivational speaker, life coach, and author.
What it’s about: This book is all about transforming one’s fears into faith and unblocking the inner self. It’s about being open and learning to let go of the need to control all the time and instead to relax. The book has a spiritual undertone, and teaches the readers how to connect with the universe and be positive, loving, and receptive.
Pearls of wisdom: “When you let yourself dream big dreams, and learn to rely on your inner wisdom, you will receive the gift of certainty.”
What others say about it: “I highly recommend picking up this book if you feel that sometimes life is just too overwhelming to keep up with and want to reconnect with true happiness. Gabrielle has created a book that will do down as a true classic; offering insights, advice, and true stories from her life that are sure to help anyone with an open mind.”
Irina Dorko, fitness & fashion entrepreneur, blogger.
#4 Badass Affirmations: The Wit and Wisdom of Wild Women
The Author: Becca Anderson is a teacher and author. She is a women’s studies scholar and the author of The Book of Awesome Women.
What it’s about: The book points out that even a badass woman needs daily positive affirmations. Not everyone wakes up in the morning believing that they are great, so they may need external motivation to push towards their potential. It shows how people are often making everyone around them happy yet failing to do so for themselves.
Badass to the bone: According to Becca, these are some of the inherently badass women: Maya Angelou, Gloria Steinem, Joan Baez, Madonna, Hannah Arendt, and Susanne Lenglen.
What others say about the book: “Listen up! These badass women have advice we all need. Some of it will make you laugh and some may make you cry but it is all solid gold wisdom that has the power to change your life for the better.”
Varla Ventura, author of ‘Sheroes’
#5 On Being Human: A Memoir of Waking up, Living Real, and Listening Hard
The Author: Jennifer Pastiloff is an American author, yoga teacher, and founder of the online magazine The Manifest Station.
What it’s about: This inspirational memoir is the story of how the author’s life experiences taught her to be strong yet subtle, fierce yet vulnerable, and imperfect yet full of beauty. It is a journal of Jennifer’s struggles and her eventual emergence as the winner of her own life.
The outcome: On Being Human is now not only a bestseller but also a movement. Jennifer travels around the world conducting workshops for thousands of women where she gives a mix of yoga, writing, sharing stories, letting go, crying out loud, and the occasional dance party.
What others say about the book: “On Being Human is heartbreaking and triumphant. And it has plenty to teach us about listening, forgiving, and ultimately, finding peace.“