Laughing in the face of Winter : New Personal Development books

If we can’t walk in the sunshine literally, let’s do it mentally and take a walk on the positive side this month! Have a bit of a laugh in the face of winter and explore the concepts of boredom, freedom seeking and embracing amateurism. From seizing the day to wishing away your problems, back around to turning obstacles into triumphs, we have a wide range of hilarious and upbeat books to help get you through those winter blues!

Syndetics book coverYawn : adventures in boredom / Mary Mann.
“The incisive and often hilarious story of one of our most interesting cultural phenomena: boredom. Deftly wrought from interviews, research, and personal experience, Yawn follows Mary Mann’s search through history for the truth about boredom. From fourth-century Christian monks and the first recorded accounts of lethargy, to Thomas Cook and the the birth of tourism, right through to contemporary boredom in couples, prisoners and soldiers. With the sharp wit of Sloane Crosley and the historical acumen of Sarah Vowell, Mann tells the unexpected story of the hunt for a deeper understanding of boredom, in all its absurd, irritating, and inspiring splendor.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverWalking on sunshine : 52 small steps to happiness / Rachel Kelly
Walking on Sunshine offers fifty-two tips and tools (one for each week of the year) to increase your happiness year-round and help you manage the mood-altering pressures of everyday life. Some of the strategies relate to particular experiences and events, such as holidays or exams; others are useful at any time. An ideal book to dip into whenever the mood takes you.” (Adapted from Mightyape.co.nz)

Syndetics book coverThe wish : the 99 things we think we want most / Bill Griffin.
“A Few years ago, Bill Griffin launched Crowdwish, a website and app that simply asked people what three things they thought they wanted most. Wishes poured in from all over the world and 99 of the site’s most popular wishes, are reviewed in this book. The result is a snapshot of the hopes, dreams and desires that unite us all, part reflection on a fascinating social experiment, part humorous rumination on the nature of happiness and part instruction manual for life. The Wish is funny, upbeat and genuinely helpful and uniquely the book will be published with 99 different covers, a selection of which can be seen inside the cover.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverFreedom seeker : live more, worry less, do what you love / Beth Kempton.
“Are you itching to do something different, but don’t know what or how? Is fear holding you back from living the life you want? Beth Kempton went from being a life-loving, risk-taking adventurer to a grown-up, settled-down mother, wife and business owner, before realizing the life she had built was suffocating her. She set out on a journey to find personal freedom, and along the way encountered many others who were also feeling trapped – by their circumstances, relationships, finances, beliefs, doubts and fears. Freedom Seeker brings together the insights, techniques and wisdom that Beth learned on her journey to freedom and will help you to live more, worry less and find a way to do what you love, every day.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe obstacle is the way : the timeless art of turning trials into triumph / Ryan Holiday
“Throughout history, iconic examples of successful people, who were not exceptionally brilliant, lucky, or gifted, achieved their success by overcoming extreme obstacles following a timeless set of philosophical principles. Now Ryan Holiday unpacks those lessons and reframes them for today’s world, building on the wisdom of the ancient Stoics and a rich trove of examples. He shows us how to turn obstacles into advantages, through controlling our perceptions, swift and energetic action, and true force of will.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMinimalism : live a meaningful life / Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus.
“In their debut book, Joshua & Ryan, authors of the popular website TheMinimalists.com, explore their troubled pasts and descent into depression. After a pair of life-changing events, Joshua & Ryan discovered minimalism, allowing them to eliminate their excess material things so they could focus on life’s most important “things”: health, relationships, passion, growth, and contribution.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe amateur : the pleasures of doing what you love / Andy Merrifield.
“In a modern world that has been taken over by experts and professionals, Andy Merrifield argues that we have lost our amateur spirit and need to rediscover the radical and liberating pleasure of doing things we love. Work, knowledge, cities and politics — these areas of our lives have fallen into the hands of box tickers, bean counters and rule followers. In response, Merrifield corrals a team of independent thinkers, wayward poets and others who challenge the accepted wisdom, think the unthinkable, seek independence and change the world. The Amateur is a passionate manifesto for the liberated life, one that questions authority and reclaims the non-team player as a radical hero of our times. (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverCarpe diem : seizing the day in a distracted world / Roman Krznaric
“We’ve all heard the saying “seize the day.” But what does it really mean and how can we use it to jump-start our lives? In the age of distraction, carpe diem is more essential than ever. In this thought-provoking and empowering book, cultural writer Roman Krznaric unpacks the history, philosophy, and modern-day applications of “seizing the day” and delivers a rousing call to action for anyone who wants to improve their lives-or our world. ” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

10 new self-help books to get you through August

It’s August and there is a light at the end of that winter tunnel! Have a bit of a laugh in the face of winter and explore life lessons from Making Your Bed all the way through to Adulthood for Beginners. We have a wide range of hilarious and upbeat books to help get you through those winter blues!

Syndetics book coverAdulthood for beginners : all the life secrets nobody bothered to tell you / Andy Boyle
“Many of us spend a decade or more figuring out how the world works through a humbling process of trial and error that by age 30 we’re hoping no one who was there remembers. Does Boyle have everything figured out? Of course not. But the breezy and funny advice, lists, jokes, and other helpful tidbits in this engaging book will help readers get through the hard parts faster!” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverLifetonic : a modern toolkit to help you heal your life and soothe your soul / Jody Shield.
LifeTonic engages you in a revolutionary experience designed to transform your soul at the highest level and shift you up a gear. Let Jody guide you safely through her powerful self-help tools and ‘tonics’ in order to overcome the negativity, fear and anxiety and issues that are holding you back from fulfilling your true potential. Learn how meditation can change your brain and can be easily integrated into your daily life.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverLovelands / Dr Debra Campbell.
“Nothing is more important to us than love, yet nothing is more painful than love gone wrong. During the course of our lives, we can develop dangerous faultlines and crevasses in our inner emotional landscapes due to past hurts, losses and disappointments. Lovelands is psychologist Dr Debra Campbell’s map for traversing the treacherous terrain of love and cultivating the wisdom and self-compassion for healthy love relationships.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBarking up the wrong tree : the surprising science behind why everything you know about success is (mostly) wrong / Eric Barker.
“Much of the advice we’ve been told about achievement is logical, earnest…and downright wrong. By looking at what separates the extremely successful from the rest of us, we learn what we can do to be more like them, and find out in energsome cases why it’s good that we aren’t.” ( Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe zen of you & me : a guide to getting along with just about anyone / Diane Musho Hamilton.
“The people who get under your skin the most can in fact be your greatest teachers. It’s not a matter of overlooking differences, but of regarding those difficult aspects of the relationship with curiosity and compassion, for those very differences offer a path to profound connection. This practical, reality-based guide to living harmoniously with even your most irritating fellow humans, shows that “getting along” is really a matter of discovering that our differences are nothing other than an expression of our even deeper shared unity.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMicro-resilience : minor shifts for major boosts in focus, drive and energy / Bonnie St. John, Allen P. Haines.
“Leadership consultants and executive trainers, Bonnie St. John and Allen Haines heard the same story from clients for years; periodic burnout, lack of focus and low energy. So they dug into the latest research looking for big answers. Instead they found that small adjustments in daily routines, including thought patterns, food and drink, rest and movement can fight the forces that sap our energy and store focus and drive. They call these amazing efficient restorative techniques ‘micro-resilience.'” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverA colorful way of living : how to be more, create more, do more the Vera Bradley way / Barbara Bradley Baekgaard.
“From the co-founder of the Vera Bradley empire, a practical and inspiring book that shows women how to awaken their full potential, at any age. A Colorful Way of Living offers practical, inspiring advice to empower women to navigate life by the values that provide the foundation of the Vera Bradley empire. In this highly readable book, Barbara Bradley Baekgaard shares the values that have helped her to thrive in business, health, and relationships” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverEgo is the enemy / Ryan Holiday.
Ego Is the Enemy draws on a vast array of stories and examples, from literature to philosophy to his­tory. We meet fascinating figures such as George Marshall, Jackie Robinson, Katharine Graham, Bill Belichick, and Eleanor Roosevelt, who all reached the highest levels of power and success by con­quering their own egos. In an era that glorifies social media, reality TV, and other forms of shameless self-promotion, the battle against ego must be fought on many fronts. ” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe art of people : 11 simple people skills that will get you everything you want / Dave Kerpen.
“In a world where we are constantly connected, it’s those with the best people skills who win the day. Those who truly understand and connect with their colleagues, their customers, their partners. Those who others like, respect and trust. The Art of People reveals the 11 people skills that will get you more of what you want at work, at home and in life. Accessible, easy to execute and often counter-intuitive, Kerpen will show you how to charm and win over anyone, no matter who you are or what profession you’re in.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMake your bed : little things that can change your life… and maybe the world / Admiral William H. McRaven (U.S. Navy retired).
“If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed. On May 17, 2014, Admiral William H. McRaven addressed the graduating class of the University of Texas at Austin on their Commencement day. The original speech went viral with over 10 million views. Building on the core tenets laid out in his speech, McRaven provides simple wisdom, practical advice, and words of encouragement that will inspire readers to achieve more, even in life’s darkest moments.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

To Self Help or Not Self Help – Recent Picks from Personal Development arrivals

This month, take a look at different ways of thinking and managing your life, explore the importance of habits and find simple exercises for building new routines. Find ways to manage stress and anxiety with a focus on positive thinking, kindness, generosity and fun! Then perhaps consider this advice for self-improvement from an entirely different angle, rejecting the urge for self improvement by urging self acceptance.

Syndetics book cover365 ways to live generously : simple habits for a life that’s good for you and for others / Sharon Lipinski.
365 Ways to Live Generously features lessons each day that focus on one of the seven generosity habits: Physical health, Mindfulness, Relationships, Connecting with yourself, Gratitude, Simplicity and Philanthropy. Each habit appears once a week, giving you a year to practice and make them all a part of your daily life. Learn why the habits are important, discover tips based on the latest research about making positive change, and explore simple exercises for building new routines.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverStand firm : resisting the self-improvement craze / Svend Brinkman ; translated by Tam McTurk.
“How can we resist today’s obsession with introspection and self-improvement?In this witty and bestselling book, Danish philosopher and psychologist Svend Brinkmann argues that we must not be afraid to reject the self-help mantra and “stand firm”. The secret to a happier life lies not in finding your inner-self but in coming to terms with yourself. By encouraging us to stand firm and get a foothold in life, this insightful anti-self-help guide offers a sobering and realistic alternative to life-coaching, positive thinking and the need always to say yes!” (Provided by publisher)

Syndetics book coverMaybe it’s you : cut the crap, face your fears, love your life / Lauren Handel Zander, with Marnie Handel Nir.
Maybe It’s You picks up where You Are a Badass leaves off–it’s a no-nonsense, practical manual to help readers figure out not just what they want out of life, but how to actually get there. Filled with practical exercises, inspiring client stories, this book enables readers to identify, articulate, and account for their own setbacks so they can transform them into strengths.” (adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverEyes wide open : overcoming obstacles and recognizing opportunities in a world that can’t see clearly / by Isaac Lidsky.
“When Isaac Lidsky learned that he was beginning to go blind at age thirteen, he initially thought that blindness would mean an end to his success and hopes for the future. Paradoxically, losing his sight gave him the vision to take responsibility for his reality and thrive. Whether we’re blind or not, our vision is limited by our past experiences, biases, and emotions. Lidsky shows us how we can overcome paralyzing fears, avoid falling prey to our own assumptions and live with open hearts and minds.” (adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverWillpower : discover it, use it and get what you want / Ros Taylor.
“Willpower is the heartbeat of a successful, fulfilling work and personal life. But you either have willpower or you don’t, right? Regardless of what you want to achieve and where you’re starting from, Willpower shows you how to: practice the scientifically-proven skill set for enhancing you willpower; make progress immediately and have new, positive habits in just three weeks.The difference between those who get what they want and those who don’t comes down to self-control, Willpower is the way you master it and use it for personal and professional success.” (adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverNotes from the sick room / Steve Finbow.
“Incapacity provides time for contemplation and creativity yet pain and discomfort detract from inspiration. Serious illness confronts the individual with the reality of death, the complacency of being is jolted by the shock of non-being. Notes from the Sick Room is an investigation into the connections between physical illness and creativity, concentrating on physical illness – cancer, HIV, tuberculosis and disabilities caused by accidents. ” (adapted from Amazon)

Syndetics book coverThe success intersection : what happens when your talent meets your passion / Pat Williams with Jim Denney.
“From the age of seven, Pat Williams’s greatest passion was baseball. However, after two years in the minors, he had to admit it was not his greatest talent. But a phenomenally successful career in sports was just beginning and when he combined his passion for sports with his greatest talents-leadership, salesmanship, and promotion, he found his success intersection. Williams shows readers how to a) identify their greatest talent b) pursue their greatest passion and c) multiply their efforts through teamwork. Readers will discover how to maximize their natural gifting, focus their enthusiasm, and leverage their talent and passion into a lifetime of success.” (adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverLife after loss : a practical guide to renewing your life after experiencing major loss / Bob Deits.
“One of the classics in the field of crisis intervention” (Dr. Earl Grollman), Life after Loss is the go-to resource for anyone who has suffered a significant life change. Loss can be overwhelming, and recovery often seems daunting, if not impossible. With great compassion and insight, Deits provides practical exercises for navigating the uncertain terrain of loss and grief, helping readers find positive ways to put together a life that is necessarily different, but equally meaningful. (adapted from Amazon)

 

The secret is to put it into practice : Self Help picks for May

Every month when we see all these amazing titles we may be tempted to think, “Wow, if only I could read all these books, my life would be so much better!”. But the task seems impossible and we give up before we start. What if instead, we chose only one of these books, every month, but actually took on one of the messages and actively put it into practice? This would actually change our lives, incrementally, for the better.

Syndetics book coverHappiness : a philosopher’s guide “A best seller in Europe, Lenoir’s book is an eminently readable and fantastic treatise on happiness. Drawing from subjects as diverse as psychology, sociology, history, biology, and neuroscience, Lenoir, a professor at France’s L’École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, constructs an intriguing philosophical dialog about what happiness is and whether it is possible to be happy. The author weaves in and out among sources from both Western philosophical and religious traditions and Eastern religions, in order to focus on the subject and not on the philosopher or scientist. He doesn’t present a definitive conclusion; rather, like most philosophers the questions he raises are answered to a degree that can be applied generally, leaving readers to discover their own solutions. Yet the author does provide an overview of six philosophies (Stoicism, Buddhism, Taoism, Michel de Montaigne’s philosophy, Hinduism, and Spinozism) to exemplify ways to counteract the pessimistic modernist take on the possibility of the attainment of happiness (and therefore, wisdom) in contemporary society.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe world beyond your head : on becoming an individual in an age of distraction “IN this book, the author takes a unique look at attention, positing that it is a commodity. He sets out to establish that in a world of increasingly pervasive distractions, individualism can only be attained through focus. Crawford uses examples of skilled labor and craftsmanship to explain how people can gain back some of their lost autonomy (a word he works over quite thoroughly) through concentration. He explains his theories well, with strong writing and citations, and the resulting argument is fresh and extremely enlightening. What is most satisfying is that technology is not blamed for the modern deluge of distractions-it is discussed as the cumulative effect of a number of influences found within Western culture. ” (Sundetics)

Syndetics book coverBetter than before : mastering the habits of our everyday lives “Bestseller Rubin (The Happiness Project) returns with this fun and informative self-help tome on the ways we unthinkingly shape our lives with habits. As she shows, habits affect our lives in both positive and negative ways. By acquiring positive habits and eliminating negative ones, we can increase our overall happiness. “How we schedule our days is how we spend our lives,” Rubin asserts. The subtitle calls to mind Julia Child’s cookbook Mastering the Art of French Cooking, suggesting a goal similar to Child’s: to collect all the available information on the subject and break it down into components for readers to apply to their own lives. Writing that “we can build our habits only on the foundation of our own nature,” Rubin goes on to identify four tendencies, or personality types, in relation to habit-formation: upholder, questioner, obliger, and rebel.” (Syndetics)

realReal : living a balanced life   This visually stunning, thought-provoking book is about looking around with awareness, noticing life’s quiet details and knowing that the honesty of time changes everything – from a human face, a family home, or a fragile sampler book of antique lace. Real is about the agelessness of integrity; appreciating the imperfect; beauty and our involvement in creating it; acceptance; ancient crafts and craftsmanship; and letting everything age with grace. Illustrated with photographs taken by the author in 27 countries, Real affirms that we are more alike than we sometimes admit – we all have a desire for warmth and love – and that there is dignity in simple things.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverCaptivology : the science of capturing people’s attention
“The former editor of Mashable and cofounder of DominateFund examines the psychological phenomena that captivate our attention–and how we can leverage them to draw and retain attention for our ideas, work, companies, and more. Whether you’re an artist or a salesperson, a teacher or an engineer, a marketer or a parent, putting the spotlight on your ideas, insights, projects and products requires a deep understanding of the science of attention. Ben Parr explains how and why the mind pays attention to some events or people–and not others–and presents seven captivation triggers–techniques guaranteed to help you capture and retain the attention of friends, colleagues, customers, fans, and even strangers.Parr combines the latest research on attention with interviews with more than fifty scientists and visionaries–Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg, film director Steven Soderbergh, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner, magician Jon Armstrong, New York Times bestselling author Susan Cain, Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto, founder of Reddit Alexis Ohanian, and more–who have successfully brought their ideas, projects, companies, and products to the forefront of cultural consciousness. The result is an insightful and practical book that will change how you assign jobs to your kids or staff, craft a multi-million dollar ad campaign, deliver your next presentation, attract users to your product, or convince the world to support your cause”. (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe art of creative thinking
“THE ART OF CREATIVE THINKING reveals how we can transform our businesses, our society and ourselves through a deeper understanding of human creativity. Rod Judkins, a lecturer in creativity at the world-famous St Martin’s College of Art, will examine the behaviour of successful creative thinkers and explain how all of us can learn from them to improve our lives. Judkins will draw on an extraordinary range of reference points, from the Dada Manifesto to Andy Warhol’s studio, via Steve Jobs, Nobel Prize winning economists and many others, and distil a lifetime’s expertise into 90 succinct chapters. Along the way he shares the story of most successful class in educational history (in which every single student won a Nobel prize); shows why graphic nudity during public speaking can be both a curse and surprisingly persuasive; and reveals why, in the twenty-first century, it’s technically illegal to be as good as good as Michelangelo.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverImprove your memory every day
“Memory is like a muscle: you either use it or lose it. Consider this definitive guide a personal trainer for the brain, one with a huge assortment of entertaining and fast-acting memory-strengthening techniques. Use them to draw upon daily, when trying to find lost keys, recall anniversaries, or study for exams. Test your sharpness with fun instant assessments. Try intriguing short- and long-term memory tasks, such as remembering a series of long words and recalling landmarks on a map. Follow a monthlong plan of “do it in a day” exercises. In addition to invaluable “Tips and Tricks” boxes, there’s advice on boosting concentration, using mnemonics, and other forms of mental association.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverHighly intuitive people : 7 right-brain traits to change the lives of intuitive-sensitive people
“Do you struggle with small talk and prefer deep conversation? Are you extremely sensitive to other people’s moods? Do people describe you as highly perceptive? Are you exhausted after being in busy places? If you’ve answered ‘yes’ to any of the above questions, you may be a Highly Intuitive Person: someone who is especially sensitive to the energy of others. Highly Intuitive People, also known as Intuitive-Sensitives, are a refined group of sensitive people who are said to make up 15-20 per cent of the population. They experience their world through the deeper senses, generally have a calm persona, care deeply for other people, are very perceptive and are often described as extremely wise and ‘knowing’. This book will help you to understand your talents and how to unleash them in an empowering way for deep self-development. The techniques in this book have already helped thousands of Intuitive-Sensitives to discover and develop their incredible gifts. This is a must-read for those who are driven to understand the deeper meaning and purpose of their life.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverHow to be creative : rediscover your inner creativity and live the life you truly want
For many of us, creativity is something that belongs to other people actors, writers, musicians, artists it is not something we would describe ourselves as having. However, creativity is innate in everyone and a key part of our personality. As children, we are in touch with our natural creativity. We learn by engaging all of our senses and we know the value of curiosity and fun. As we get older this creative and intuitive self is stifled and locked away as we become burdened with responsibilities at work and home. In ‘How to Be Creative’ Liz Dean shows you simple ways to bring creativity back into your life. She starts by looking at the biggest obstacle to creativity: making time. Liz shows you how spending just ten minutes a day on a creative project is enough time to spark new ideas and tap into your creative power.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverSo you’ve been publicly shamed
“For the past three years, Jon Ronson has been immersing himself in the world of modern-day public shaming–meeting famous shamees, shamers, and bystanders who have been impacted. This is the perfect time for a modern-day Scarlet Letter–a radically empathetic book about public shaming, and about shaming as a form of social control. It has become such a big part of our lives it has begun to feel weird and empty when there isn’t anyone to be furious about. Whole careers are being ruined by one mistake. A transgression is revealed. Our collective outrage at it has the force of a hurricane. Then we all quickly forget about it and move on to the next one, and it doesn’t cross our minds to wonder if the shamed person is okay or in ruins. What’s it doing to them? What’s it doing to us?” (Syndetics)

Mindfulness, grief and self-love – New Self-Help books in April

Lessons from this month’s selection include:

How to find your true self behind the performance of relationships,
How to integrate mindfulness in your life, at work and at home,
How to be more tolerant and accepting of yourself,
How to deal with grief when your parents pass away.

Syndetics book coverScary close : dropping the act and finding true intimacy
“In a conversational tone, Miller discloses thoughts about intimacy and how to find it: taking off the masks worn to hide the true self. The personality we show to the world often is that of a performer, created to hide who we are while trying to win approval and get attention, he says. Miller’s contemplations come as the result of courting his wife, Betsy, who changed his thinking when it came to relationships with women. Short chapters tackle topics that range from personal memories and experiences to practical advice about factors that affect people as they develop relationships.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book cover Mindful work : how meditation is changing business from the inside out 
“Big business often seems the reserve of ruthless money-grubbers desperately looking for a way to make their next buck. But a quiet revolution is reshaping the corporate world, as the world’s most dynamic entrepreneurs and businesspeople are starting to change how a successful business is run. A new breed of mindful managers are using meditation, yoga and other Zen techniques to focus on feeling good while making money – and using the money to do good too. Materialism is out and mindfulness is in. Featuring insights from high-level managers at Fortune 500 companies through to Google employees and the Dalai Lama himself, Mindful Work is an inspirational guide to mindfulness based in the realities of running a successful business.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe sweet spot : how to find your groove at home and work 
“In The Sweet Spot, Carter shares what she calls “the sweet spot equation,” a combination of strategies and practices for attaining happiness without giving up success, and for achieving success without compromising happiness. Using a simple formula, The Sweet Spot shows us how to take a brief recess, an inoculation against “The Overwhelm” and the key to converting stress into productive and creative energy institute daily micro-habits that free you up to focus on and enjoy more important things unplug from seemingly time-saving gadgets that can sap our strength, and use technology more strategically prioritize our relationships, making use of the hard science that points out how healthy connections help us thrive.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverTame your inner critic : find peace & contentment to live your life on purpose
“This book takes you on a journey of self-discovery, exploring the energy of your thoughts and turning the negative into positive. Discover how to use your innate intuitive abilities to heal these energies and discard judgments and criticisms that have built up over the years. Find your true north – your own internal wisdom that is connected to the divine and gives you guidance. With specialised exercises and meditations, this book shows you how to banish negativity, improve your relationships and realise new ways to share your gifts with the world around you.” (Book cover)

Syndetics book coverI [heart] me : the science of self-love
“In this transformational book bestselling author David Hamilton fuses science with self-help to offer simple yet powerful strategies for learning to love yourself. Throughout I Heart Me, you will learn that loving yourself means more than feeling good about yourself or being kind to yourself – it’s about being self-confident, being able to express yourself without fear, being unconcerned about whether you’re liked, and living your own life – not someone else’s idea of what your life should be. With the most up-to-date research and findings on the subject of self-love, this book offers simple ways to achieve significant breakthroughs in your own journey to self-acceptance.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverBeyond willpower : the secret principle to achieving success in life, love, and happiness
“Based on more than twenty-five years of clinical experience, and rooted in science, ancient wisdom and proven therapeutic techniques, this programme will help you remove any personal obstacles so that you can achieve health, wealth, and relationship success beyond your dreams.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverEmpower yourself : daily affirmations to reclaim your power!
Following the overwhelming response to Treasure Yourself, Miranda continues to explore similar themes in her latest title, providing insight on what she believes it means for young, modern women to be empowered in all areas of life and how this can be achieved. For Miranda, one of the most powerful tools to facilitate change, both in her own life, and in the lives of others, is the use of positive affirmations. Here, she has written over 250 personal affirmations that can be used to achieve and maintain a healthy lifestyle, harmonious relationships, fulfilling career and happiness.”(Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverHealing the adult child’s grieving heart : 100 practical ideas after your parent dies
“Offering heartfelt and simple advice, this book provides realistic suggestions and relief for an adult child whose parent has died. Practical advice is presented in a one-topic-per-page format that does not overwhelm with psychological language, but provides small, immediate ways to understand and reconcile grief. The common challenges that face grieving adult children, such as helping the surviving parent, resolving sibling conflicts, and legal and financial issues, are addressed clearly and concisely.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverMidlife orphan : facing life’s changes now that your parents are gone
“The word “orphan” usually calls to mind the image of a child. But even self-sufficient adults can feel the pain of “orphanhood” when their parents are suddenly gone. Complicating the natural mourning process is the fact that this loss often occurs in our thirties, forties, or fifties — as we are raising our own children, watching them leave the nest, and facing other adjustments in our lives, from our jobs to our marriages to our health.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe big little book of resilience : how to bounce back from adversity and lead a fulfilling life
“Most of us set out quietly hoping for, and secretly expecting to live a happy, successful and healthy life. But life doesn’t always go to plan.The Big Little Book of Resilience is about developing flexibility, acceptance and self-compassion when those plans go awry. In this beautifully illustrated book, Matthew Johnstone guides the reader to an understanding of how resilience plays a key role in wellbeing. He offers an accessible roadmap to developing and maintaining resilience and how it can help you overcome and learn from difficult life events.” (Syndetics)

February Self help – Overcoming obstacles to achieve success

Success is a very subjective concept and can take many forms. What is success for one person might not be for the next. Is financial wealth a real success if your heart is not content? Can you reach fulfillment without money? What are your goals in life? Professional success, academic or sporting achievement, a happy romantic relationship, having a lot of friends or having only a few very close ones, fighting for a worthy cause? Does change make you anxious or do your thrive for novelty and adventures? Everyone will have a different answer to these questions. Whatever your life’s quest, this month’s selection should give you some useful insight on the way to a content life.

Syndetics book coverThe millionaire mystique : how working women become wealthy– and how you can, too!
“Business psychologist Jude Miller Burke looks at today’s self-made female millionaires and how they successfully manage career and family life. What can struggling women learn from them? Miller Burke backs up her findings using results from a ground breaking study of millionaire women. In this book will you’ll learn: the surprising number of millionaire women who were successful in their careers in spite of difficult, even abusive childhoods; why starting “at the bottom” isn’t a disadvantage and how you can build on your childhood and early career circumstances, whatever they are; what personality factors wealthy working women have in common and how to foster them for yourself; how to develop the two most critical traits for overcoming obstacles to success. Jude Miller Burke is a business psychologist, executive coach, and a millionaire.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverRewire your anxious brain : how to use the neuroscience of fear to end anxiety, panic, & worry
“Do you ever wonder what is happening inside your brain when you feel anxious, panicked, and worried? In Rewire Your Anxious Brain, psychologist Catherine Pittman and author Elizabeth Karle offer a unique, evidence-based solution to overcoming anxiety based in cutting-edge neuroscience and research. In the book, you will learn how the amygdala and cortex (both important parts of the brain) are essential players in the neuropsychology of anxiety. The amygdala acts as a primal response, and oftentimes, when this part of the brain processes fear, you may not even understand why you are afraid. By comparison, the cortex is the centre of “worry.” The author offers specific examples of how to manage fear by tapping into both of these pathways in the brain. As you read, you’ll gain a greater understanding how anxiety is created in the brain, and as a result, you will feel empowered and motivated to overcome it.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverManaging for change : how to make your future brighter, today
“The world around us is constantly changing – and at a faster and faster rate. These changes have an impact on our lives at many different levels. It’s possible that the things we are doing now will not work in the future. So how do we alter our current trajectory? And to where should we set our new course? And if change is inevitable, why not plan for it? And why not go one step further – and actually manage for it? Letting change happen to us is no guarantee of a happy and successful life. Reaching that goal for now and tomorrow means constantly assessing the future and developing skills in predicting and managing the forces of change. Managing for Change is your guide to doing just that.” (Adapted from Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverHow the body knows its mind : the surprising power of the physical environment to influence how you think and feel 
“Though the brain is the organ most commonly associated with thinking, psychologist Beilock (Choke) makes a fairly fresh case about the rest of the body’s contribution to the process. The book begins with the premise that the body’s interaction with its physical surroundings affects cognition, and Beilock goes on to show how the body can be used to manipulate everyday perceptions. She builds her argument with a variety of anecdotes and cultural references. Often these examples flip conventional wisdom to highlight the influence of our body on thought. For example, she connects the correlation between musical ability and IQ to finger dexterity. Beilock offers an unconventional perspective that will stimulate the mind.” (Adapted from Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverYou can be happy : 101 ways to smile
Imagine you have been told that this is the last day of your life and you have twelve hours to live .. ..are you really going to worry about the report you haven’t finished for work, the negative comment you received from a friend a year ago or how you will manage Christmas at your place this year? Probably not! This book will help you to place all life issues into perspective, recognise your strengths, become more assertive and in doing so increase significantly your happiness level for the rest of your life. This book provides useful strategies for you to focus on breaking through the roadblocks to smile and step back onto the happiness path. Smiling is contagious. People around you will be smiling too.” (Adapted from Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverImproving your memory : how to remember what you’re starting to forget
This book provides readers with tools for understanding and improving memory, including sixteen helpful exercises. Simple techniques like writing information down, creating a catch word or phrase, altering something in your environment, and reviewing details in advance can put you actively in charge of retrieving information more easily. As in previous editions, Improving Your Memory reinforces memory techniques through real-life examples. This accessible handbook also discusses how memory works; how it changes with age, stress, illness, and depression; and why people remember what they do. Many readers will see immediate improvement in their memory after reading the book.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe energies of love : using energy medicine to keep your relationship thriving
“A relationship begins with the meeting of two unique energies. This union of energies determines the way you communicate, fight, love, and want to be loved. Donna Eden and David Feinstein draw on the real-life experiences of couples who have attended their popular ‘Energies of Love’ workshops, as well as their own experience as husband and wife, to show how an understanding of your energy system and that of your partner can help you build a more harmonious and loving bond. We all have different ways of making sense of the world around us, but when faced with conflict, especially with those we care most about, we tend to revert to one of four ‘Energetic Stress Styles’. The Energies of Love is filled with tools to help you diffuse arguments and energy exercises to increase your overall sense of joy and wellbeing.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverMindfulness : 25 ways to live in the moment through art
“In this internationally best-selling book, French psychiatrist Andre guides the reader through the practice of mindfulness to art itself. Using color photographs of classic and modern works, the author shows readers how to quiet the outer world and intensify their presence in the moment, neither trying to escape it or change it. Andre responds to each art piece in terms of feelings and sensory perceptions, helping readers to visualize themselves inside the canvas, smelling, hearing, and really seeing the scene. A fascinating book!” (Adapted from Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverImagine this : creating the work you love 
“Life coach and poet Clair (Rattlebone) advocates the New Age mission of self-realization with this succinct, easy-to-follow workbook. A survivor of domestic abuse, Clair earned two advanced degrees; after a long career as a medical technologist, she became an English professor at George Washington University and an award-winning writer. Setting the example for how self-realization improved her life, she outlines the journey to empowerment that worked for her in nine steps: for example, the first step toward “pursuing a greater sense of wakefulness” is simply to keep a journal. For those who may be floundering, she advises looking for inspiration in “places that hold your idea of beauty” or simply chilling by watching “wall paper dry”.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverIt’s not about the shark : how to solve unsolvable problems / David Niven, PhD.
“”We limit what we think is possible based on the boundaries the problems set for us,” Niven asserts. “We stare at our problems and cannot see anything else.” Niven uses Steven Spielberg as an example, explaining how the malfunctioning mechanical shark built for Jaws forced the director to suggest, rather than show, his story’s antagonist for most of the movie. According to the book, focusing on a problem can make it harder to find an answer; conversely, looking away from a problem often makes it easier to find a solution. While it’s natural to be scared of failing, particularly when trying new things, Niven advises readers to “fail with joy,” and relish the freedom to explore new alternatives that present themselves with failure. This fresh, enthusiastic approach to problem-solving will encourage readers to open themselves up to opportunity and make for a valuable addition to anyone’s self-help shelf.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe motivation manifesto : 9 declarations to claim your personal power
“Burchard reveals that the main motive of humankind is the pursuit of greater Personal Freedom. We desire the grand liberties of choice–time freedom, emotional freedom, social freedom, financial freedom, spiritual freedom. Only two enemies stand in our way: an external enemy, defined as the social oppression of who we are by the mediocre masses, and an internal enemy, a sort of self-oppression caused by our own doubt and fear. The march to Personal Freedom, Burchard argues, can be won only by declaring our intent and independence, stepping into our personal power, and battling through self-doubt and the distractions of the day until full victory is won.” (Syndetics)

 

How to guides to life

Because we can all do with a little bit of help and encouragement, here is a selection of books that will guide you through life’s meandering journey.

Syndetics book coverCould I do that? 
Yes you can!
Hands up who feels like a completely inadequate underachiever whenever you hear about someone’s great achievement. When someone in the office is off cycling around the world, or someone on TV has just launched a great new business which will save the planet? Most of us envy the drive and determination of these people. They’ve actually made this stuff happen rather than just day-dreamed about it. We all ask… Could I Do That?
Well Simon Hartley is here to show us that we can! Taking on a challenge – big or small – in your career or personal life, can be intimidating but also totally transformational. Simon will show us how to work out what it is we want to do and then how to make that happen. He uses examples and advice from others who have achieved big things.
The book examines how you should go about preparing for change, which problems you’ll face along the way, and demonstrates why and how your life will be better as a consequence.
Practical and motivational, it’s about embracing change and defeating limiting beliefs
It challenges readers to think big and take steps to achieving their goals
It puts power in the hands of people who don’t yet realise that they can do extraordinary things too.” (From amazon.com)

Syndetics book coverRisk savvy : how to make good decisions / Gerd Gigerenzer.
Posits that “most of us, including doctors, lawyers, financial advisers, and elected officials, misunderstand statistics much more often than we think, leaving us not only misinformed, but vulnerable to exploitation. Yet there is hope. Anyone can learn to make better decisions for their health, finances, family, and business without needing to consult an expert or a super computer, and Gigerenzer shows us how”. (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe life plan : 700 simple ways to change your life for the better / Robert Ashton.
“Do you ever feel you’re just floating through life with a lack of direction? Or get that nagging feeling that things could be better? People’s lives can be thought of as stories -filled with challenges, turbulence and adventure – and, like all great classic stories, they follow a pattern. By understanding this pattern, you can develop the perspective you need to write your own story and live an extraordinary life. Your Life Plan brings together practical tools and approaches to help you master the art of personal change, by developing a plan to identify and realize your life goals.” (Back cover)

Syndetics book coverThe ecstasy of surrender : 12 surprising ways letting go can empower your life / Dr Judith Orloff.
“In this hope-filled offering, Orloff (Emotional Freedom) posits that the only way to live a powerful, successful life is to surrender to it. Blending neuroscience, energy medicine, psychiatry, and the art of intuition, Orloff, an assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at UCLA, addresses major life issues by breaking them into 12 different “surrenders,” including “redefining true success, power, and happiness”; the “four vital insights into power and letting go”; “cultivating impeccable communication”; and “exploring the divinity of your body and sexuality.” With a compassionate and empowering tone, she counsels others not to micromanage life details, but to be in “flow” with them and to look for the lessons in all situations as well as to refuse to live a life governed by fear. Self-assessment quizzes allow readers to measure their level of involvement in self-defeating behaviors; helpful and non-judgmental suggestions provide strategies for overcoming these negative mind-sets. Orloff demonstrates her own adherence to these principles by unflinchingly sharing her own experiences in the spirit of teaching others.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverLiving with intensity : understanding the sensitivity, excitability, and emotional development of gifted children, adolescents, and adults “Gifted children and adults are often misunderstood. Their excitement is viewed as excessive, their high energy as hyperactivity, their persistence as nagging, their imagination as not paying attention, their passion as being disruptive, their strong emotions and sensitivity as immaturity, their creativity and self-directedness as oppositional.
This resource describes these overexcitabilities and strategies for dealing with children and adults who are experiencing them, and provides essential information about Dabrowski s Theory of Positive Disintegration. Learn practical methods for nurturing sensitivity, intensity, perfectionism, and much more.” (From amazon.com)

Syndetics book coverThe good psychopath’s guide to success / Kevin Dutton & Andy McNab ; cartoons by Rob Murray.
“What is a good psychopath? And how can thinking like one help you to be the best that you can be?
Dr Kevin Dutton has spent a lifetime studying psychopaths. He first met former SAS hero Andy McNab during a research project. What he found surprised him. McNab is a diagnosed psychopath but he is a GOOD PSYCHOPATH. Unlike a BAD PSYCHOPATH, he is able to dial up or down qualities such as ruthlessness, fearlessness, conscience and empathy to get the very best out of himself — and others — in a wide range of situations.
Using the unique combination of Andy McNab’s wild and various experiences and Professor Kevin Dutton’s expertise in analysing them, together they have explored the ways in which a good psychopath thinks differently and what that could mean for you. What do you really want from life, and how can you develop and use qualities such as charm, coolness under pressure, self-confidence and courage to get it? The Good Psychopath Guide to Success gives you an entertaining and thought-provoking road-map to self-fulfillment both in your personal life and your career.” (Back cover)

Syndetics book coverLaugh your way to happiness : use the science of laughter for total well-being / Leslie Lyle.
“Lyle, neuro-linguistic programming practitioner and founder of Laughter Business, introduces readers to Laughter Yoga, the practice of “laughing for no reason” popularized by Dr. Madan Kataria, and its physical and psychological benefits. She details her trip to study with Kataria at the School of Ancient Wisdom in India, his methods, and her struggle with doubt and self-criticism that was resolved in a powerful “moment of simple joy.” Lyle started a “laughter club” at a pub where members experience joy through laughter and group activities. Scientifically, Lyle discusses laughter as a natural stress reliever and empathic response that strengthens the immune system and increases blood flow and pain tolerance. She shares examples of therapeutic exercises, some Dr. Kataria’s and some her own, including speaking gibberish, “milkshake laughter,” and bringing levity to otherwise dull tasks. Lyle also recommends practicing a state of childlike exuberance that she calls “Elliotology,” named after a friend’s two-year-old son. Additionally, her guide to self-hypnosis purports to manage the symptoms of psychosomatic illnesses. This is a good introductory text to Laughter Yoga, and Lyle’s narrative adds a personal touch; however, much of this information is available on her own website for free.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverNice girls don’t get the corner office : unconscious mistakes women make that sabotage their careers / Lois P. Frankel, PhD.
“The New York Times bestseller, which has become a must-have for women in business, is now revised and updated in celebration of its 10th anniversary. Internationally recognized executive coach Dr. Lois P. Frankel teacher women how to eliminate unconscious mistakes that could be holding them back, and gives invaluable coaching tips that can easily be incorporated into social and business skills. The results are career opportunities women never thought possible and the power and know-how to occupy the corner office! Stop making “nice girl” mistakes such as: -Mistake #13: Avoiding office politics -Mistake #21: Multi-tasking -Mistake #54: Failure to negotiate -Mistake #82: Asking permission -Mistake #100: Smiling inappropriately. These and other behaviors are why Nice girls don’t get the corner office.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverIt ain’t over … till it’s over : reinventing your life- and realizing your dreams- anytime, at any age / Marlo Thomas.
“Introduces readers to sixty amazing women who are proving that it’s never too late to live out a dream — to launch a business, travel the world, get a PhD, indulge a creative impulse, make a family recipe famous, escape danger, find love, or fill a void in life with a challenging new experience.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe pocket book of positives : a reassuring companion for life’s journey.“Life’s journey can sometimes seem like a succession of trip hazards, with fate deliberately placing obstacles in your path. At times like these, devling into The Pocket Book of Positivies will provide the tonic you need, helping you to put life in perspective and find the strength to look the world squarely in the eye. Picking you up and dusting you down will be – among others – Maya Angelou, Bertold Brecht, Marie Curie, Samuel Johnson, Carl Jung, Franz Kafka, Abraham Lincoln ans Socrates.” (Back cover)