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Category: Self Development


Categories: Travel, Self Development

The "Before You Die" books

Here's a twist on all those "Before You Die" books:

101 Places Not to See Before You Die
by Catherine Price

Summary: 101 Places Not to See Before You Die brings you lively tales of the most ill-conceived museums, worst theme parks, and grossest Superfund sites that you'll ever have the pleasure of not visiting. Journalist Catherine Price travels the globe for stories of misadventure to which any seasoned traveler can relate - including guest entries from writers such as Nicholas Kristof, Mary Roach, Michael Pollan, Rebecca Solnit, and A. J. Jacobs -and along the way she discovers that the worst experiences are often the ones we'll never forget.

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Here are a few of the more traditional books in the "Before You Die" thread:

Unforgettable journeys to take before you die / Steve Watkins and Clare Jones.

1,000 recordings to hear before you die : a listener's life list / by Tom Moon.

1001 books you must read before you die / general editor, Peter Boxall ; preface by Peter Ackroyd.

and of course, the basic
1,000 places to see before you die / by Patricia Schultz.

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For many more along this vein, click here to see the list generated in the online catalogue by using a key word search using "before you die"


Review: A Thousand Names for Joy

A Thousand Names for Joy: Living in Harmony with the Way Things Are by Byron Katie and Stephen Mitchell

Shauna's Review: In her first few books, through her own personal brand of inquiry, Katie showed how suffering can be ended by questioning the stressful thoughts that create it. Now, in her latest book, sort of “ The work “ meets Taoism, she enables the reader to discover the freedom that lives on the other side of inquiry. Of all her works to date, this is undoubtedly the most complex and philosophical in scope. It’s no wonder, though, as her co-author is Stephen Mitchell, the renowned translator of the Tao Te Ching and by using the ancient text as stimulus for discussion she makes it resonate anew for the reader today. Throughout A Thousand Names for Joy, Katie weaves provocative excerpts and timeless insights from the Tao Te Ching, passages of text, quotes etc., to further discuss the human condition. Issues like good and evil, life and death, love, work and fulfillment, all such essential issues are explored therein.

More so then her other works, the reader gets to know the author intimately in this newest one. Whether she’s discussing her impending blindness or her grandchildren or how her home was burgularized, we get vivid and illuminating glimpses into Katie’s own personal life and the joy that has come to transform her ever since she “ woke up to reality “ – one morning in 1986. It seems that this woman is living the joy that Lau Tzu wrote about 2,500 years ago, a joy sweeping and authentic, a joy that is truly transformative and it comes across in writing that is as bright and fresh as it is compelling. Another must read for those interested in the field of self development.


Review: Stillness Speaks

Looking for a book to help you find inner peace? Check out this "classic" title as reviewed by our newest staff reviewer...

Stillness Speaks by Eckhart Tolle

Shauna's Review: Need some serenity to go? Then this little tome is exactly the one for you! Easy to read and accessible and quotable, it is perhaps the perfect fit for the modern spiritual seeker.

Eckhart writes “Silence is helpful, but you don’t need it in order to find stillness. Even when there is noise, you can be aware of the stillness underneath the noise, of the space in which the noise arises. That is the inner space of pure awareness, consciousness itself. You can become aware of awareness as the background to all your sense perceptions, all your thinking. Becoming aware of awareness is the arising of inner stillness."

Written in sutra verse and reminiscent of the style of the Tao Te Ching and the Vedanatas, Stillness Speaks is every bit as amazing as a spiritual work as it addresses the timeless concerns of life and death and our relationships with ourselves, God and one another. With his penetrating wisdom, Eckhart Tolle reminds us to live in the now, to seek the spacious stillness that is the realm of naked consciousness, in this insightful journey back to God. It is more or less a restatement of what he has said in his earlier works, yet these familiar spiritual themes shine with an even greater truth and resonance then before. Hauntingly truthful and beautiful, each sutra reads almost like a poem or prayer or psalm, reassembling the shattered fragments of consciousness and reality found in our post modern experience. It is certainly a worthwhile read and will be welcomed by those familiar with his other works and newcomers alike.


New Pop Pick Title

Women, Food and God: An Unexpected Path to Almost Everything by Geneen Roth is now a Pop Pick at Regina Public Library.

Book Description: If you suffer about your relationship with food -- you eat too much or too little, think about what you will eat constantly or try not to think about it at all -- you can be free. Just look down at your plate. The answers are there. Don't run. Look. Because when we welcome what we most want to avoid, we contact the part of ourselves that is fresh and alive. We touch the life we truly want and evoke divinity itself.

Since adolescence, Geneen Roth has gained and lost more than a thousand pounds. She has been dangerously overweight and dangerously underweight. She has been plagued by feelings of shame and self-hatred and she has felt euphoric after losing a quick few pounds on a fad diet. Then one day, on the verge of suicide, she did something radical: She dropped the struggle, ended the war, stopped trying to fix, deprive and shame herself. She began trusting her body and questioning her beliefs.

It worked. And losing weight was only the beginning.


Categories: Self Development

Vision Boards

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Vision Boards by Turner Layton

I had never heard of vision boards until this book came in to the library, so I am going to rely on the publisher's description: A Vision Board is a board for pasted images representing goals the creator wants to accomplish, made so that he or she might attain them. They are garnished with everything from photographs to 3-D objects. This book shows the steps to: imagining the desired results (from the perfect mate to improved health); breaking through obstacles to transformation; visualizing an improved future; and using the Vision Board to "retrain the brain."

Does this interest you? If so, the book has just arrived, so make sure you put a hold on it.


The Happiness Project

The Happiness Project (2009) New and Popular!

Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun

By Gretchen Rubin

From Publisher's Weekly (Starred Review):
...Rubin's funny, perceptive account is both inspirational and forgiving, and sprinkled with just enough wise tips, concrete advice and timely research (including all those other recent books on happiness) to qualify as self-help. Defying self-help expectations, however, Rubin writes with keen senses of self and narrative, balancing the personal and the universal with a light touch. Rubin's project makes curiously compulsive reading, which is enough to make any reader happy.


The secrets and science that could save your life!

The Survivor's Club (2010) New!

by Ben Sherwood

Summary: From award-winning journalist Sherwood comes a fascinating exploration of survival that can help prepare you for life's inevitable struggles, from cancer and crime to car accidents and airplane crashes.

From Booklist: According to Sherwood, two questions are central to this book. What does it really take to survive a catastrophic event and what kind of survivor are you? You might be surprised at the answers. While there are tactics and strategies to surviving life tragedies, unforeseen accidents, and other catastrophes, many of these are instinctive (some, like exhibiting transitory superhuman strength, are manifested physiologically, without conscious planning). Some of us...are better survivors than others -- in prisoner-of-war camps, for example, the people most likely to collapse are the eternal optimists who believe rescue is imminent and fail to come to terms with the possibility of long-term imprisonment. The book is a useful, insightful exploration of the nature of survival, the resilience of the human mind and body, and the ways in which we can all use our natural gifts to maximize our chances of coming through catastrophic situations. --David Pitt


Categories: Self Development

It's All Too Much

With a new year about to begin, what better time is there to not only become a better person, but to clean your house as well.

It's All Too Much: An Easy Plan for Living a Richer Life with Less Stuff by Peter Walsh takes a look at consumer culture, packrat natures and the stress that comes by having too many material possessions. Instead of showing us how to store all of our stuff, Walsh examines our belief that we need to keep so many things, and helps us look at what we truly want our living spaces to be. This book is a call to action to clean up our cupboards, counters and closets, and essentially to clean up our lives.


Motherhood in the Twenty-First Century

Bad Mother: a chronicle of maternal crimes, minor calamities, and occasional moments of grace, by Ayelet Waldman

Waldman is the author of the "Mommy Track" mysteries and two previous works of non-fiction. She is married to writer Michael Chabon, and they live in California with their four children.

Waldman shot to fame (or notoriety) when she wrote an online piece called "Modern Love", confessing that she loved her husband more than her children. A firestorm of public opinion ensued, culminating in her appearance on "Oprah."

Here in Bad Mother, Waldman makes her case for giving both ourselves and other mothers a break. Such contentious topics as stay-at-home versus working moms, breastfeeding, organic foods, roles of dads, in-laws, and hyper-competitive parenting are all covered with clear sight and common sense.

Waldman's bottom line, and her most important message, is that the more secure and comfortable we are in our own parenting choices, the less need we feel to act as the "Bad Mother Police" for other mothers.

This compelling book is both enlightening and encouraging for those still trying to navigate the never-really-clear waters of parenthood.


The Unthinkable: Who Survives When Disaster Strikes - and Why

Amanda Ripley: The Unthinkable: Who Survives When Disaster Strikes - and Why (2008) 155.935 RIPLE

Publishers Weekly review: Ripley, an award-winning writer on homeland security for Time, offers a compelling look at instinct and disaster response as she explores the psychology of fear and how it can save or destroy us.

Surprisingly, she reports, mass panic is rare, and an understanding of the dynamics of crowds can help prevent a stampede, while a well-trained crew can get passengers quickly but calmly off a crashed plane.

Using interviews with survivors of hotel fires, hostage situations, plane crashes and, 9/11, Ripley takes readers through the three stages of reaction to calamity: disbelief, deliberation and action. The average person slows down, spending valuable minutes to gather belongings and check in with others. The human tendency to stay in groups can make evacuation take much longer than experts estimate. . . .
Ripley's in-depth look at the psychology of disaster response, alongside survivors' accounts, makes for gripping reading, sure to raise debate as well as our awareness of a life-and-death issue.

My thoughts: After reading this book, I have been paying more attention to fire exits and I will start to read the safety cards in airplanes. This very readable book makes a good point - in many disaster situations you are your own "first responder" - it may be minutes or hours (or even days) before official help appears. What you and your fellow survivors do in that time can be the difference between life and death.

from the Table of Contents page:
Part One: Denial
1. Delay: Procrastinating in Tower 1
2. Risk: Gambling in New Orleans

Part Two: Deliberation
3. Fear: The Body and Mind of a Hostage
4. Resilience: Staying Cool in Jerusalem
5. Groupthink: Role Playing at the Beverly Hills Supper Club Fire

Part Three: The Decisive Moment
6. Panic: A Stampede on Holy Ground
7. Paralysis: Playing Dead in French Class
8. Heroism: A Suicide Attempt on the Potomac River

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Check out the author's blog

posted by Sharon

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