August 2009

Succulent Wild Woman

SARK’s incredibly juicy, loving manifestos to self-care, creativity and sucking the marrow out of life never disappoint. Succulent Wild Woman: Dancing With Your Wonder-Full Self is a SARK (Susan Ariel Rainbow Kennedy) classic, her “glowing invitation to live a rich, succulent life.” Topics range from wight to romance, money to creativity, fear, sexuality, love and more.

The book’s chapters, or “Menu Selections,” cover a multitude of vibrant and enriching topics to include in your life, such as going on outrageous adventures without money (SARK is famous for staying in expensive hotels, beaches and other places with little to no money), or creative expression through storytelling, journaling, using costumes and painting.

Why is God Laughing?

“Death is life on another frequency,” Deepak Chopra tells us in his comical yet moving Why is God Laughing? “The music doesn’t end just because someone can’t hear it.”

Chopra, known for his intensely spiritual and mind-blowing—if not at times confusing—books, tells the fictional story of Mickey Fellows, a comedian whose dead father delivers him a message about taking life a little more seriously and losing his fear in order to fully live his own life.

Walking in This World

Like Julia Cameron’s other works, Walking in This World is the kick in the seat of the pants that many artists need to keep coming back to the page every day and really be artists. While not as earth shaking and revelation-causing as The Artist’s Way, this second tome in the Artist’s Way series still focuses on Cameron’s three main tools—morning pages, artist dates and walking—to encourage people to become better artists.

In Walking, Cameron stresses on the need to simply begin, wherever you are. Whether you think you’re suffering from writer’s block, you haven’t painted in twelve years, you’re a former concert pianist turned homemaker—whatever—you can start right now, this moment, and embrace your own art. Just show up to the page, and let God handle the quality while you produce the quantity, advises Julia.

The Secret Daily Teachings

You’ve read the book. You’ve seen the movie. You may even have the gratitude journal where you record your daily blessings, wishes for blessings to come, and imaginings of what you have right now. But have you tried The Secret Daily Teachings, by Rhonda Byrne?

It’s actually in a tear-off-the-page, calendar-type format, though not dated by dates; rather, there is a teaching for each day of the week. There’s no introduction; instead, Byrne provides a quickie intro on the first Monday of the book and promises to that “the clarity, understanding, and wisdom you will receive every day will help you live the laws that govern human beings, so you may truly become the Master of your life.”

Live Boldly

You know how when you buy a book, thinking it’s going to be life-changing or inspiring and it ends up being rubbish, and you donate it to the library or give it away, wishing it had never been published?

Live Boldly is not one of those books.

Live Boldly: Cultivate the Qualities That Can Change Your Life, Marry Anne Radmacher’s second book, is full of wisdom, insight and good plain fun. Full of challenges to be fulfilled, prompts to be written about and quotes, poems and other tidbits, Radmacher elaborates on 34 qualities that everyone could use in his or her own life—and how to incorporate them.

Easier Than You Think

If you’re a fan of Dr. Richard Carlson’s Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff series and workbooks, you’ll probably be interested in his Easier Than You Think.

Published in 2005, it is similar to the Small Stuff series in size and design, and covers the same kinds of tips and topics—ways to enhance your life and general well-being through simplicity and living in the now.

I think a lot of Carlson’s advice in this book can probably be found in the Small Stuff series as well—though perhaps worded differently. Instead of focusing on what not to sweat, for example, the series contains thirty-nine things to actually make an effort to do.

Writing Down the Bones

Natalie Goldberg’s Writing Down the Bones has got to be one of the best books for writers on the market. In it, writing is used as a meditation as much as a creative process, something creative, circular, organic. Gone are the rules and regulations from school day writing assignments, the margin enforcements, the different line usage requirements based mostly on instructor preferences. Instead, a focus on nonstop writing, and frequent writing, without judgment, are the focus.

The Woman's Retreat Book

Whether you’re planning on scheduling yourself a much-needed becation or you simply need to take a breather, Jennifer Louden’s The Woman’s Retreat Book: A Guide to Restoring, Rediscovering and Reawakening Your True Self—in a Moment, an Hour, a Day, or a Weekend may be just what you need.

This “do-it-yourself” guide to creating inner peace and time for yourself within your current lifestyle can be used by anyone—whether office executive, working mother, or college student. It focuses on helping you to carve out a chunk of time just for you—no matter your location or the time of day.