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Top 5: My Favourite Self Development Books

Top 5: My Favourite Self Development Books

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Hello All,

I hope everyone is having a great Thursday! I received such great responses from my last post on self development books I first off want to say a huge thank you. I appreciate all the love and support out there in the book blog community. I never could have imagined all the positive feedback and the number of views I received for Self Development Thursday! It is truly humbling to see and I am excited others enjoy these genre of books as much as I do. I have decided to continue on with the Self Development Thursday theme. I bring to you today my top 5 favourite self development books of all times. Each book in their own way has touched my soul and helped me reach my potential- even in areas I did not think possible. So without further adieu, here we go!

1. Girl Stop Apologizing by Rachel Holli

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What a great women powering book!! Rachel outlines that it is okay for women to have aspiring goals that go outside the family group. Rachel also gives lots of tips and tricks to help you stay motivated and reach your goals! Some of these include having daily practices such as a gratitude journal, writing your goals down every day and the 5 to Thrive! If you listen to the audio book it is read by Rachel herself so you can hear the enthusiasm which empowers you even more!

2.Awaken the Giant Within by Tony Robbins

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This wouldn’t be a top 5 self development book if there wasn’t a Tony Robbins shout out. The king of motivation and self development Tony Robbins has inspired and helped millions. This short read will be sure to motivate and inspire you to be the best version of yourself! My husband loves Tony Robbins. He has read a bunch of his books but highly recommends this one and I have to agree with him.

3.The Secret by Rhonda Byrne

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Probably one of the more famous books on this list most people have heard of The Secret. Maybe you’re more familiar with the movie but hey it’s actually a book. Not everyone may agree with the Laws of Attraction. Self development is the ability to take in knowledge and see what suits you the best. I enjoyed the Laws of Attraction for the main reason that it’s based in positive thinking. You get what you put out into the world!!

4.The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz

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Another oldie but a goodie on this list is the Four Agreements! It is a self powering book that increases self awareness. The 4 agreements with yourself include: be impeccable with your word, don’t take anything personally, don’t make assumptions, and always do your best. These seem so simple and we would already do these but hey it’s a lot harder than it appears. Don gives us tips and tricks to try and incorporate these into our everyday lives. All of these books sound like they promote daily habits – seems like my first Self Development Post!

5.The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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This is a great book to learn to live in the moment and be present. It follows the mindfulness movement and outlines that our current emotional stresses are a result of our thoughts not who we actually are at the core. It’s a lot to wrap your mind around but its a super great and eye opening read. Worry and anxiety are a product of our thoughts and it’s our job to learn to live in the present moment and allows our thoughts to pass through our mind without reacting to them.

I hope these have opened your eyes to all the possibilities out there in book form to help you change your life- if this is what you are looking to do. If you have any self development books you would like to recommend I would love to hear from you. Also if you have read any of the above books please feel free to leave a comment below with your thoughts and feelings regarding the content!

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Happy Reading and Development!

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Book Review: The Woman in the Window by A

Book Review: The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn

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Better late the never I say. Yes I just recently read one of the best selling suspense books of 2018. It was worth the wait. I have heard a lot of mixed reviews but I really enjoyed this book. There were a few predictable ‘scares’ but all in all, I enjoyed the building suspense and chaos filled climax. As a lot of the books I review this was the author’s debut novel. With so many talented writers coming out the next few years seem to be a reader’s paradise!!!!

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We are introduced to the novel by the narrator who we learn is looking out her window and spying on her neighbours. She is watching the wife have an affair with the handyman in one house and a kid playing a cello in another house. The narrator (Anna Fox) talks about Ed and Olivia who seems to have left her. Anna has agoraphobia from some episode which is pinnacle in the backstory of this novel. The reader learns that before she was stuck in her house Anna was a prominent child psychologist. Now she helps out fellow agoraphobic people on a website.

Some new commotion goes on across the neighbourhood, a couple and their teenage kid move in! Enter Halloween Anna is of course at home watching her old movies. Kids start to throw eggs at her house. Anna becomes so enraged she actually tries to go outside to stop them. She becomes dizzy and disoriented from the open space causing her to have panic attacks. The new neighbor comes to the rescue. Jane Russell ushers Anna back into her house and a strange connection is made between the two.

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The next day Jane’s son comes over and brings a lavender candle from his mother. Anna makes a connection with Ethan as well. She psych senses tingle and she guesses Ethan is troubled at home, possible with an abusive father. In the next few chapters the reader gets a glimpse into Anna’s backstory. Her therapist Dr. Fieldings brings up a trip. All we get is that Anna thinks if they did not take that trip their family would still be together… bababa. We also see that through the Agora website she started to form a relationship with a user called GrannyLizzie. All key information to understanding the story’s ending.

She admits to herself that she spies on the neighbours not to be nosey but its a window for her into the world. A way for a recluse to keep in touch with what’s going on outside in the real world. I could not imagine how it would feel to be kept inside and not be able to go out and experience things. Having panic attacks myself I know the debilitating feeling so having a panic attack triggered by open spaces, horrible. We also see that she drinks a lot, I mean way too much. She mixes her meds and alcohol with she knows it is not good. I love the fact that this book opens up the foe paye regarding mental health that as a society we do not like talking about all the time.

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Jane comes over and the girls bond over booze and chess. Jane’s controlling husband comes over to see if she was at Anna’s house. Then catastrophe hits, Anna hears a scream coming from the Russell house. She sees Jane bleeding with a sharp object protruding out of her chest. All this time Anna has been drinking and mixing her pills as she usually does. Police called and no one believes a drunk recluse. Mr.Russell says that Anna has never met his wife. ‘Jane’ comes over and to the readers shock this Jane is not the same Jane that came to play chess. Is Anna delusional ? It does seem fitting to the reader because at this point we know she heavily drinks with very potent pills.

As the plot thickens Anna/s basement tenant and her get cozy, well sleep together. She goes into his room and finds a pearl earring that looks like the one Jane was wearing when they had the chess day. So much confusion is thrown into this story which makes for a great mystery read. Anna then follows not Jane into a coffee shop – leaving the comfort of her house because she is determined to find out the truth.

The plot thickens as Anna finds a picture of herself sleeping on her phone. The police still does not believe her and actually thinks she took it to look for attention. Anna has hit rock bottom. This is when we learn the true backstory of Ed and Olivia. It turns out that Anna had an affair on Ed and this northern trip was supposed to bring them together. However, Anna had driven off a cliff in a storm ultimately killing Ed and Olivia. She has such bad PTSD she developed agoraphobia. She was actually talking to Ed and Olivia’s ‘ghosts’.

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Now the climax of the book. We find out that Ethan, the innocent troubled child is severely mentally unstable. He was the one who took the picture and it was his biological mother that was stabbed – he was adopted. Wow it was a good twist. He is also GrannyLizze! There is a fight scene where Anna has to go outside in order to survive Ethan’s attacks. She ends up killing him and gets the help she needs to come to terms with her agoraphobia and PTSD. The end of the book was very hopeful as Anna was venturing out on her own terms into her garden.

So for all of you who have read Woman in the Window what did you think of the book? Yes it did have some predictability in it but there was some great twists like ‘Jane’ being Ethan’s biological mother, I did not see that one coming. What did you like and did not like about the book? It kind of reminded me of Gone Girl in some way. What other books were along these lines? I also thought it was a great mental health book. Please feel free to leave any comments below I would love to hear your thoughts!!!

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Happy Reading !!!!!

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Book Review: The Silent Patient By Alex Michaelides

Book Review: The Silent Patient By Alex Michaelides

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This is Alex’s debut novel and what a debut !! I read this back in April and it still is my favourite of this year. This psychological thriller will definitely deliver all the shocks and on your seat reading! He is a screenwriter that wrote The Devil You know (2013) and The Con is On (2018). If Alex keeps pumping out books like The Silent Patient he will move up fast in the bestselling author world. I can’t wait to read what he puts out next!!!

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We start off with a bang, literally. Alicia is a well known artist who lives with her successful photographer husband Gabriel. Years years ago Alicia shot her husband in the face, then refused to talk. Alicia was found with her wrists slit and Gabriel was tied to a chair. She is sent to a psychiatric hospital in hopes with therapy she will talk, think again. Enter Theo a new psychiatrist transferred to the hospital where Alicia is residing called the Grove. He does this because he says he was interested in her case 6 years ago and he thinks he can help her talk now.

Theo discovers through his digging that after the murder Alicia’s painting changed. The one immediately after is based on the Greek Mythology called -self sacrifice . Was this her way of coping and expressing her feelings after the murder?

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We see that Theo himself has some mental health issues. He has addictions like smoking and marijuana use. He also has some past issues. Early psychoanalytic therapy has saved him. Alicia also has some childhood issues so maybe he sees himself in her broken psyche. Is this what would happened to him if he did not get help? Does he want to save Alicia because someone has saved him? His view on psychotherapy is that it is his job to feel the patient’s feelings then send them back to the patient. Does he feel Alicia’s feelings?

We get a character view of Alicia through these mysterious journal entries. We see that she loved Gabriel very much but this may have turned into an obsession – she started painting him in Jesus’s image. Theo is also exhibiting an obsession with Alicia even after she attacks him after a 1:1 and he has her medications decreased.

Obsession seems to be a common theme throughout this novel. Theo is obsessed that Kathy is cheating on him. Instead of talking things out with her he proceeds to stalk her and read through her computer. Alicia becomes obsessed that a man is stalking her and she cannot tell anyone.

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We find through the journal entries and through Theo interviewing Alicia’s friends and family Alicia had previous suicide attempts. After her father dies to tries to kill herself, she has had many suicide attempts at the Grove. We learn further in the book that her mother drive herself and Alicia into a wall, killing the mother but not Alicia. Alicia’s father then blames Alicia for killing her mother and she is dead to him – where her mental health issues started.

While reading this book I was thinking of so many different possibilities for the ending – which makes this a great thriller. When the reader cannot guess the ending because there are too many possible endings it’s a great book. The endings of this book is freaking amazing. Huge spoiler alerts ahead. So we learn that the person Kathy was cheating on Theo with was Gabrielle. Yes it gets better. Theo then stalks Kathy and Gabrielle and he is the man that Alicia sees outside her window. Wow And Theo goes bat shit crazy , breaks into into Alicia’s home to tell he that her husband is cheating on her. He ends up tieing bot Gabrielle and Alicia up and gives Gabrielle a chance to choose between saving himself or Alicia. He chooses himself. Theo then gives Alicia the gun and tells her she has a choice, shoot a man who does not truly love her and is extremely selfish. (Hence the greek mythology Alcestis reference). She ends up shooting Gabrielle but what a twist to get us there!!!!!!!

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So what did you all think of the Silent Patient. Did you love it as much as I did or was it not your favourite? As always feel free to leave comments below ! If you have any suggestions for psychological thrillers please leave them below.

Happy reading!!