My 4 Top Self-Care Books to start 2020

I'm not a huge fan of setting New Year resolutions. They never worked, plus there was an anxiousness around Christmas which kept cropping into my head when I was enjoying myself. It was long overdue to make a change. Menopause is great that way as not only do you tend to have no patience for toxic people in your life, you also want to do things that work for you. As self-care is no.1 priority for me over the last few years most of these books are my go-to for creating the vision for the year ahead.

Now creating the vision doesn't mean it'll work out perfectly. I broke my right arm in 3 places in April last year. That is after spending most of the previous 3 months with flu, gut issues and a respiratory infection. With the broken arm I spent most of the year getting back to health and fitness.

The good news out of all this is that the vision kept me on track. I couldn't take clients nor run my courses but I could sit at a desk, learn to write with my left hand (new skill, still needs a bit of improvement, but getting there). Plus I could complete courses in coaching skills and stress management. Plus tons of other continuous professional development. I used my nutrition training to help me heal quicker than expected. Plus I practiced my skills of managing stress and pain. 

Whatever the setback you just have to pick yourself up, dust yourself off and move forward, would you agree? It can take time but you can never give up on yourself. 

Anyway back to the books. I can't say that they'll help you, but you may glean useful tips to optimise the priorities you set for the coming year. Or even to use them as a guide/steer to choose books more suited to where you are at now.  

After years of trying to nail down my goals I now try to discover the meaning of my life and set my top goals for the coming year based on that. For example this Christmas and holidays we didn't put up decorations. Instead we decorated the table on Christmas Day and didn't have it Christmassy. It meant we had to look for the meaning of Christmas itself.

We were worried about news on my hubby's health so from 30 November we took every chance to be out enjoying ourselves, whether it was a coffee overlooking the sea or a delicous meal out in one of our favourite restaurants.

It was all about savouring the moments, so in essence, living mindfully. You have to feel it, the external expression wasn't there so by looking deep we found the meaning of Christmas for us. It brought so much contentment, happiness and pleasure. 

IKIGAI

IKIGAI, your reason for jumping out of bed in the mornings. Every now & then I’m at a talk or reading and this word pops up. So much so I bought a book last year titled “IKIGAI”. As it’s the time of year most people are reviewing the last year & prepping for the new one I thought it might be useful to you. I’ve only started reading this book and enjoying the content so far.

The book is written by Hector Garcia & Francesc Miralles.

Get Your Shit Together 

The title made me laugh so after flicking through it in a shop last year I bought it. I read it a few times while dealing with the varioius illnesses last Christmas and early January and subconsciously used it throughout the year. As the author Sarah Knight so eloquently puts it "Practical ways to cut the bullshi*t and win at life". I'm planning on using this more proactively this year. Before each section there is an outline of what is being covered. What I like are the various tips and exercises to basically get out of your own way and tool up and get your life in order.

Five Minutes in the Morning

Again this journal had to be put on standby and all I could do last year was flick through it. It's purpose is to help you focus. To focus more on what needs to be done instead of mult-tasking when not needed. By the end of the year I've become more focused with my time and what I do, both personally and in business. 

This focus journal is published by Aster.

My Life Goals Journal

This was a turning point book for me, especially with regard to my health. I am one of those people that doctors and other medical staff ignore. I got treated very badly by the nutritional professionals in hospitals over the years. Physiotherapists wouldn't tool me up. I was constantly sick and it was hugely hampering my life in every way. 

As with the author, Andrea Hayes, she used this book to help her manage illnesss. I knew that unless I could get a handle on my health nothing else would work. The no fuel in the engine or missing parts in the car spring to mind. 

It works by completing certain tasks, meditations and more for each month's topic. After 12 months it's about moving forward and she has published another book to help with that. 

I've used this book and got to month 5. It was enough to help me frame the steps to move past the constant illness. I've move a long way but now it is time to go back to the book and set more targets to help me on my wellness journey. Thankfully I am a nutritional therapist so I can optimise my own nutrition and lifestyle, have decent doctors and a fantastic physiotherapist. I no longer have to rely on others who hampered it. 

I really like this book as it gives me a sense of control over my chronic illness so I can optimise my health and wellness and hopefully keep my kidney and the rest of me in good shape.

Sometimes it's just setting the intentions of your future life and taking even the smallest steps to get there. Progress is moving forward, standing still is just stagnation and won't necessarily help you to achieve your vision. 

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