“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world”
- Nelson Mandela
Start With Why, by Simon Sinek.
This book focuses on a way of thinking, acting and communicating that inspires others by presenting ideas about the power of asking “Why”. The ideas presented in Start With Why seem so simple while simultaneously expressing a deep exploration of purpose. To find out more about Simon’s theories I recommend listening to his Ted Talk:
I Thought It Was Just Me, by Brené Brown.
Ms. Brown makes an excellent examination of perfectionism, feelings of inadequacy and power. She has dedicated her career to understanding how we can become more resilient to the emotions and experiences that may interfere with healthy living. For example, the idea of needing to be perfect can sometimes hold us back. Clients going through divorce may feel very vulnerable. This vulnerability can hinder making sound decisions about choosing to divorce and how to move on. There are many stories in the book about flight, fight and freeze behaviors. I think Brené Brown’s studies and insight help us understand the fear, shame and disconnect that all of us feel at some point in our lives. Understanding why and how these feelings happen can help us become more resilient.
Difficult Conversations, by Douglas Stone, Bruce Patton and Sheila Heen.
This book addresses what makes conversations difficult and how to develop effective communication skills that can be used in all aspects of life. I use the book in teaching my Collaborative Law class because it demonstrates a structured and constructive way of working through conflict. Family conflict can be extremely difficult and we often handle conversations with our children and spouses in ways that do not make us proud. Often we feel we are not being heard or have trouble finding the right words to express our feelings. Difficult Conversations is a user-friendly exploration of how we can more effectively communicate our feelings and beliefs in personal relations and in a professional setting.
Stop Walking on Eggshells, by Paul T. Mason and Randi Kreger.
The authors address the challenge faced by people who have relationships with persons with Borderline Personality Disorder. Compassion, understanding, and knowledge are key to resolving conflict peacefully. I find that the more I equip myself with the knowledge and skills to help understand my clients and the people in their lives, the more effective I am in advocating for my clients.
The 10 Laws of Enduring Success, by Maria Bartiromo.
Ms. Bartiromo shares stories and observations that are inspiring and informative for those looking to take charge of their lives and find a positive approach to self-improvement. I love Maria’s personal story of success and endurance. One aspect of taking control is getting a grip on finances instead of the “stick you head in the sand” approach so often used when life gets overwhelming. Taking control and finding a workable structure actually helps alleviate the stress that is associated with life’s challenges. Maria’s views on integrity, adaptability and courage are well-written and inspiring, especially for people who want to take control of their own lives.
Your Life Calling Reimagining the Rest of Your Life, by Jane Pauley.
We often take stock of ourselves when we experience a life-changing event or reach a milestone age. Thinking about making a change, whether it is voluntary or involuntary, can cause a state of fear and anxiety. A certain paralysis may set in from indecision. What opportunities do we have that we may not see? How do we move from a panic state to a state of passion and performance? Change does not happen until we make it happen. This book explores the stories of people from all walks of life that have changed paths for one reason or another. Because Your Life Calling is anecdotal, I found it more interesting than a "how to" book. The stories of people's improbable life changes inspire a very positive approach to the future. I have recommended this book to everyone I know who is considering a new path in the workplace or in their personal lives.
When Harry Left Sally, by Marion Korn & Eva Sachs
This book looks at the growing trend of older people going through divorce that is sometimes know as the “grey divorce”. It is an easy read and provides practical wisdom and stories that help bring meaning to the ideas the authors have about working out a divorce in a sensible way. Issues such as where to live, how to deal with retirement benefits and health care as well as estate planning are key concerns that are addressed with an emphasis on the point of view of people facing a divorce later in life. Included in the book is valuable information on how to make assessments about whether or not to divorce and how to work towards mutually beneficial solutions in the event of a “grey divorce”. I enjoyed a quote referenced in the book in the chapter about what people say about life after divorce:
The divorce has lasted way longer than the marriage, but finally it’s over.
Enough about that. The point is that for a long time, the fact that I was
divorced was the most important thing about me. And now it’s not.
The book helps to demonstrate that it is possible to manage your way through a grey divorce without court and with both parties keeping the respect of their children.