3 inspirational books to read this summer

Is one of the things you most look forward to about your summer holiday the ability to read a book from beginning to end without interruption? There is nothing better than having the time and space to lose yourself in a book, getting immersed in the plot, the characters and the story that time drifts away and you are transported to another world. There are so many good books out there … how do you choose which ones to take? My Amazon wishlist runs into the hundreds! 

Let me help ease your holiday planning just a little and recommend three inspirational books that made an impression on me and will leave you with a lovely warm glow inside to match your tan!

Number one: Rachel Hollis "Girl Stop Apologising" This will give you the biggest proverbial kick up the backside that you’ve ever had (in a good way). I see many women that put everyone else’s needs before their own. They try and do the right thing all the time, worrying about how they might be perceived otherwise. Rachel Hollis gives you the permission to stop living your life for other people and start living your life unapologetically for yourself. She challenges women to stop talking themselves out of their dreams. The book tackles a whole host of excuses that we use to not do things for ourselves, and equips you with the skills you need to live the life you want. Rachel Hollis has a really friendly, funny, chatty style. It’s almost like talking to a best friend about your life, the book will make you cry with laughter.

Number two: Hal Elrod "The Miracle Morning"
Following a period of grief after a family bereavement I tried everything to get my mojo back, this book literally revolutionized the way I go through each day. I always knew that meditating and exercising were good things to do. I had the intention of trying to weave them into my routine but never seemed to find the time, something else always took priority. I got to the point where I either needed to stop working or wait till retirement until I could live the life I wanted! I didn’t want to do either of those so had to find another option - then I stumbled across a whole community of people practicing “The Miracle Morning” routine. The Miracle Morning is about getting up an hour earlier than you normally would (it is not as painful as it sounds!) and spending 10 minutes doing six life “SAVERS” (Silence, Affirmation, Visualisation, Exercise, Reading, Scribing). You might think doing 10 minutes of something is hardly worth it, I have found the Miracle Morning to give me a crystal clear focus every day. I love that 60 minutes whilst everyone else is still sleeping to spend on planning my life. I get a deep sense of satisfaction knowing I have done something for myself before the rest of the world has even barely woken up. Yes it might only be ten minutes of exercise or meditation but it is ten minutes more than I normally would have done. The Miracle Morning, without doubt, is now my favourite part of the day.

Number three: Jonathan Hoban "Walk With Your Wolf"
We all know that walking can be beneficial for improving mental health. It is one of the simplest forms of exercise as it does not involve any fancy equipment, clothing or paying a membership fee. People that walk for pleasure can be stereotyped. I remember when a boyfriend told me that he was a member of the Ramblers Association I was guilty of labeling him a bit of a nerd, I teased him about having special walking boots and a walking pole. However, walking is a sure fire way to restore balance in both body and mind. In attempts to balance out the hectic, crazy lives we live, people are beginning to realize the power the environment has in calming the mind. Psychotherapist, Hoban, decided to take sessions outside of the counselling room and into parks around London. The results were quite astounding. Walking provided space for people to process feelings, tune into their intuition and as a result find answers to problems. Hoban shares his own personal story through addiction and breakdown, as well as stories from his clients. As a fan of mindful walking I know that trees omit something called "phytoncides" - an antibacterial substance that protects trees from disease. Phytoncides have a calming affect on us and strengthen our own immune systems. Just getting outside for a walk each day we can make a huge difference to how you feel. What are you waiting for? Grab your trainers and a coat, get outside and see for yourself!