Dive into the list of my favorite books which I loved reading in 2020. It is a list of five books that can influence us and help in our well-being.
I shared my top five reads from 2019 with you. This year, sharing top 5 wellness books I which read in 2020. Since 2020 we were all home, I could read much more. If you are wondering about how to find time to read, please read the article here. As a busy parent or professional, reading might take some time to get used to, but it can feel very relaxing, especially in these times.
How can books affect our well-being in these busy times?
A few books have consolidated knowledge to attend to the specific problems of being overwhelmed, emotionally, or physically drained. They can help us gain perspective(s), streamline activities, feel less busy in life and less cluttered in the head. Ranging from physical well-being to handling stress, diet, emotional and inter-personal challenges, there are some real gems available to us – which I certainly think we should read!
I’ve been reading a lot lately and vouch for their enormous power to influence our well-being.
Books for Well-being: Top picks from 2019
Advantages of reading as a parent or a professional
Work or parenting can be demanding and might leave us with no energy or the will to read. But if we try to bring reading into our routine, the rewards are many.
(a) Increased focus – With reducing attention spans due to gadgets all around, I’ve found books to anchor my thoughts and provide a sense of focus.
(b) Today, books address most of the issues we face at home and work. Biggest benefit? Reading these books can normalize how you feel.
(c) Meditative – The calm from reading is next to meditation and, therefore, can help achieve emotional well being.
(d) Good books can be life-changing! It takes only one new perspective to address any challenge that we might be facing. Reading has helped me introspect which has been a pleasant and unbelievable experience.
1. Atomic Habits
A few books are so insightful that they can keep one glued from start to finish. That’s what “atomic habits” is like. The author breaks down habit formation for us. My favorite one is where the author says that the systems help us make progress, not just our goals. A good quote is “all big things come from small beginnings.”
Another analysis from the book that I loved was, “Here’s how the math works out: if you can get 1 percent better each day for one year, you’ll end up thirty-seven times better by the time you are done. Conversely, if you get 1 percent worse each day for one year, you’ll decline nearly down to zero.”
If you have read “The power of habit,” this book is a more uncomplicated read than that and builds on it. Another note from the book that left an impact on me was: instead of saying, “I have to,” use “I get to.” If you are a parent, instead of thinking, “I have to cook for my family,” think, “I get to cook …” Instead of “I have to play with my child,” “I get to play with my child.” And this small shift can have such a significant impact.
The book’s core to me was that instead of making significant changes, break down your purpose into small behavior changes and make them a habit. Also, make these habits easy, attractive, and be system-oriented!
2. The Little Book of Hygge
Oh, this is such a warm, quick, and almost a must-read for winters. The book is a quick read about Danish happiness. Denmark is known for having the happiest people globally, which is why this book can be intriguing. The author is the CEO of the happiness institute. Frankly, I had no clue there is such a thing as a happiness institute, but now I feel it should be present in every country, if not every state. Hygge means conscious coziness, though there is no literal translation for the word in English.
Since the Danish have long-drawn dark winters, they have found ways (candles, friends, fireplace, sweets, hot drinks, and more) to create a cozy feeling to keep the spirits uplifted. I loved the Hygge manifesto in the book – you got to read it, and it will likely bring a smile to your face. We brought our cozy breakfasts back as a family after reading the book! Strongly recommended read.
3. The Coaching Habit
I am a health coach, so I ordered this book to understand coaching better. However, after reading it, I feel it could be a good read for many of us in many aspects of life. The phrase “advice monster” that the author uses has stuck with me. I use it to quieten my mind even when talking to a friend, family member, and it helps the conversation so much! Once you get the hang of taming your advice monster (or jumping too early to give advice), this can be such a calming experience and add depth to your conversations. You may want to give it a try!
4. The Healthy Brain Book
If you like books on health and wellness, this one will be an excellent read for you to find the brain’s workings and healthy habits without getting too much of a textbook-feel. It is a very well written book by two doctors, and the explanations are stellar!
The authors state that “Turmeric gets our smartest spice award,” instead of “turmeric is a very healthy spice.” This is an example of why this book is a good read, which is very informative too!
5. The Subtle Art of not Giving a F*ck
“Life is essentially an endless series of problems. The solution to one problem is merely the creation of another.” True that, right? The book’s language has abusive words, but the messages are crisp and hard-hitting. Especially if you feel too busy or looking for approval from people, or hoping that life would be rosy but isn’t, this is the one to read!
Another good one from the book: “If you live your life solely in search of pleasure, you will end up living a life full of mistakes. Conversely, if you experience the occasional instance of sufferings, you will be equipped to lead a better, happier life.” In a nutshell, I took away from the book: I have a limited stock of things that I can bother about, so I need to be careful about worrying about stuff – not everything needs attention or worrying.
I hope the list is of use. Which book did you like the most in 2020, and do you have reading targets for 2021? Please share in the comments below.
Happy Reading! I hope we gain a discipline for reading in this new year, and in turn, be well in lives!