3 Books That Positively Changed My Life

books that positively changed my life
One of my favorite ways to unwind from a busy day is to read in silence. I try and turn off all technology and dive into a book 60 minutes before bed to decompress and have a little me time. I personally like real paper books vs. tablets to give my brain a break from electronics and fall asleep faster. Plus, the smell of books gets me every time!

I know I’m not alone when it comes to the love of reading, so I wanted to share 3 books that have honestly changed my life (for real, I’m not being dramatic!). I probably think about something in one of these books every single day, as they are full of life lessons. I’ve read each one multiple times and all are easy reads. Some of these might be “self-help,” but I’ve never been one to shy away from “self-improvement,” as I like to call it!

Here they are:

1. Zen Habits by Leo Babauta
I actually found this author via his amazing blog when I was going through a confusing, unmotivated period. When he started publishing, I pre-ordered this book as quickly as I could. I’ve since gifted it to tons of people—all who reach out after to share the positive effects.

The author suggests a simplistic approach to living a “zen” life. He talks about habits, personal struggles, and gives action items for achieving a peaceful life—and everything is realistic; there’s no woo-woo here. I’d rec this book to anyone who loves lists, wants to incorporate minimalism, or needs obtainable ideas on how to live a happy, healthy life.

2. The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
A friend gave me this book, who actually got it from her therapist, and it’s such a nice read! I especially like the section about communication and how humans speak to each other. This is a short, compassionate book that makes you stop and think about how you’re living your life and treating others. It extra fitting if you’re feeling a little self-centered (because we all get selfish at times) and want to practice being humble.

3. The Life-Changing Magic of Not Giving a F**k by Sarah Knight
I’m sure most of you have heard of The Life Changing Habit of Tidying Up (which is also stellar), but I loved this version even more. I’ve been a lifelong people pleaser and in 2016 I made one of my resolutions to “care less.” That might sound harsh, but I needed that lesson to focus more on myself. This book was PERFECT for figuring out what was essential to me as an individual, and it gave me support to eliminate things—including people—that I didn’t need. Can’t recommend this more!

Has anyone read these? What books have changed your life?

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  1. I have heard about The Four Agreements from my boyfriend a while back but never gave it a read. It sounds like a great book, I’ll have to check it out. I think it might be stashed away somewhere in the apartment… hahaha. Also loving the title of Sarah Knight’s book. Sometimes it is important to just not give a f**k. lol

  2. A book that once helped me was Scovel Shinn’s “The Game of Life” (and then her “Secret Door to Success”). But, also “The Little Prince”!

  3. Hi! Love to see because i’m addicted growing, but you should name the author in the beggining of every article and in the home page. Although your styles and subjects are different (and complimentary, Chelsea is good to have you here!), it’ll be more straightforward this way.

  4. So wonderful to see your shared list of books. I definitely want to check out Zen Habits. I just yesterday recommended The Four Agreements to a new aquaintance. Also great is The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success by Deepak Chopra and The Power of Now and A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose by Eckhart Tolle.

  5. Sarah Knight’s book legitimately changed how I live! I usually deal with varying degrees of guilt, which subsequently influence whether or not I do something I don’t really want to/spend time with someone I don’t really want to/otherwise waste my own time doing something not in line with my own interests of values. Her book really helped reshape how I perceive the value of my own personal time, and now I regularly refer to my own f/ck budget! 😀

  6. Hi Chelsea,

    Just read your post and added some of the books to my list 😉
    You should definitely read ‘Tuesdays with Morrie’ by Mitch Albom; my all time favorite inspirational book. ‘How to become a buddha in 5 weeks’ by Giulio Cesare Giacobbe also changed my life a lot. I think you might like them too!

    Sandra – Morrie & Me

  7. A book that was life-changing for me was Shad Helmstetter’s Choices. I have read a TON of self-help books in my life. This one is most certainly one of the top 3 I related to.

  8. Very interesting list, thank you ! 🙂
    I did found amazing the other Life-Changing Magic and think everyone should read it. What you do about it stay in Vegas.
    I haven’t read Zen Habits and the Four Agreements and will certainly check them out.
    I would suggest “The Alchemist” and “Design the Life you Love”.
    Thank you again for sharing

  9. This post came at such a perfect time in my life! Ordering Book #3 right now because I need to stop giving a f*ck (so envious of people who know how to!). I’m also going to look into The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success, sounds really interesting.

  10. I think if I had to pick one it would be Poor Dad Rich Dad! It opened my eyes to looking at money in a way I just haven’t before. Great post!

  11. Thanks for the list. Looking forward to reading all of them. Like all true lovers of reading, thumbs up to real books. It somehow feels luxurious to hold a book in your hand and the pleasure of turning pages, feeling their texture and taking in the smell of fresh new books is irreplaceable. The list that you have given quite goes with the mood I am in and hope they help me.

  12. Yes! The Four Agreements changed my life. It is a wonderfully written book, with very simple ways to think about habits we all share, like taking things personally. It is empowering. You feel lighter after reading it. Thanks for the list!

  13. THE best “self-help” book I’ve ever read: How to Want What You Have by Timothy Lee Miller. I wish I could get everyone to read this most excellent book!

  14. I’m currently reading Quiet by Susan Cain. As she describes it it’s a book about ‘The power of introverts in a world that can’t stop talking”. As in introvert myself I’m finding it really interesting learning how our brain functions differ from that of extroverts and why. It also names numerous introverts who are famous but no one thinks of them as introverts. For example Einstein and Eleanor Roosevelt. Would highly recommend

  15. I love to find books that have a strong impact me and change the way I think in a positive way. I am really happy I came across this post, thanks for sharing with your readers. I recently read a book that really blew me away called “The Light” by author Judith Lambert(http://www.judithlambertbooks.com/). Anyone that has ever questioned what all of this means, as in the world, why we are all here, etc. needs to give this a read. The book follows a woman that is literally brought out of sleep, almost as if she was assigned to this pursuit of spiritual enlightenment. She rises to the occasion, refusing to give up on the idea that it is we who are bound to societal pretense and that “The Light”, so to speak, is something that anyone from any system of faith not only can, but should pursue, the hope for spiritual unity. Again, this was a brilliantly crafted story and I would love to hear your opinion

  16. I haven’t heard of any of these books, but the Zen Habits sounds interesting. One book that changed the lifestyle of my family is called The Daniel Plan. Diving deep into treating your body like the temple that it really is.

  17. Have you ever heard about The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron? Take a look at this book on how to be creative or to have a creative life… you’re not supposed to be an artist in the strictest sense ^_^

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