The more I read, adventures I undertake, and clients I have the opportunity to work with, the more I believe there’s a budding storyteller inside all of us just waiting to find our stage – no matter how big or small.
Irrespective of our age, we all have previous life experiences to draw on that do, in most cases, teach us some wonderful insights, wisdom and gems to cherish, and on the flip side, show us things we’d rather not experience or want to know for that matter.
As someone who had a stutter as a child, and subsequently went to elocution lessons to iron out the creases, reading and ‘storytelling’ was not something I jumped at the opportunity to do – however I did love having stories read to me, especially when the reader embraced the words and delivered the narrative with energy, pace and passion. In addition, being forced to read pages of books I was studying and to speak out loud in class at secondary school and sixth form was not an activity I relished.
Delicious delights of the written word
At secondary school I had a wonderful English Teacher – ‘Thank you Mrs. Turner” – who took the time to show me the delicious delights she experienced with the written word from various authors – subsequently her enthusiasm rubbed off on me.
To this day, when delivering workshops and presentations, I still get stuck on words that start with certain letters, so have to pause, take a deep breath, and gently rummage through my memory bank to fish out an alternative piece of vocabulary to slot into place – whilst hoping my audience hears a poignant purposeful pause.
Stir your curiosity – My top 5 reads to inspire new thinking
So decades later, now an enthusiastic reader with a passion for personal development and transformation, keen to continue growing and giving back, which books have inspired me to keep turning the page? Both in paper and digitally on my Kindle…
The Code of the Extraordinary Mind
Author – Vishen Lakhiani
The founder of Mindvalley, Vishen is widely recognised as one of the most influential people in personal growth. A unique blend of personal stories and cutting edge theories delivered with compassion and humour, The Code of the Extraordinary Mind shares wisdom from interviews with Elon Musk, Richard Branson and Arianna Huffington, reveals a 10 point framework for understanding and enhancing our everyday lives, and shows you how to bend reality using consciousness engineering to help you grow at speeds like never before. If you’re looking to accelerate your growth, this is a great place to start.
Nonviolent Communication – A Language of Life
Author – Marchall B. Rosenberg
When a friend and fellow marketer told me they were reading this book I questioned why as the title seemed quite confrontational. However on doing a little research I discovered that the book is based on the integration of four things – consciousness – to support living a life of compassion, collaboration, courage and authenticity; language – to understand how words contribute to connection; communication – to know when and how to ask for what we want and how to hear others to move toward solutions; and means of influence – which means sharing ‘power with others’ rather than using ‘power over others’.
If you’re looking to increase your ability to live with choice, meaning and connection, and to connect empathetically with yourself and others to enjoy more satisfying relationships, then you’ll gain invaluable life long insight from delving into this book.
The Magician’s Way – What it Really Takes to Find Your Treasure
Author – William Whitecloud
I was introduced to this book when on a course with Natural Success, a business that is run by coach and author, William Whitecloud. I’ve worked with William at various workshops, in London and last summer in Africa on a voyage called the Soul Safari. The narrative of The Magican’s Way takes you on a journey on how to create the success you want to see in your life – by focusing on the end result, and not the process. I’m currently reading this for the second time and discovering new insights.
Pivot – The Only Move That Matters Is Your Next One
Author – Jenny Blake
A fascinating lady, Jenny Blake was the co-creator of Google’s Career Guru Programme that shows people how to build on their assets, identify their strengths, bring out their interests and to build on their networks to launch a new meaningful and adventurous career, doing something they love.
Her book Pivot shows you how to channel your energy to identify new opportunities, to facilitate and transition from your current work environment, and to whole-heartedly take steps to build the next. If you’re looking to expand and grow, this book will help you discover your next move.
In her own words…
I LOVE HELPING AWESOME PEOPLE LIKE YOU ORGANIZE YOUR BRAIN, MOVE BEYOND BURNOUT AND BUILD A SUSTAINABLE CAREER YOU LOVE.Jenny Blake
Daring Greatly – How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead
Author – Brene Brown
I was first introduced to Brene Brown when I listened to and watched her very funny and engaging TED Talk on The Power of Vulnerability.
By means of a brief intro, research professor and author Dr. Brené Brown has written several books having studied courage, vulnerability, shame and empathy. She challenges everything we think we know about vulnerability, and dispels the widely accepted myth that it’s a weakness. She argues that, in truth, vulnerability is strength and when we shut ourselves off from vulnerability – from revealing our true selves – we distance ourselves from the experiences that bring purpose and meaning to our lives. It’s a fantastic read that encourages you to be courageous, to show up, and to dare greatly.
On the subject of Brene Brown, I’m looking forward to reading her new book ‘Whole Hearts’ – which is due for release this October.
When your ears prefer to do the reading
Encourage your mind to open and be prepared to think differently. Stir your curiosity by checking out some TED Talks – there’s something there for everyone.