My Spring reads & Summer reads of 2021

My spring reads, but also the books I read up until August 2021. Pre-warning, for some reason this seasons books had quite ‘colourful’ titles. The messages within though were powerful and I wanted to share them with you.

I will choose books with less aggressive titles for my next list. I already have a few lined up. However, this is my Spring-Summer reads posts so…

What were my spring reads?

In all honesty, not much. I ended up having to move house and change jobs in May. Most of spring was spent getting store room and van hire quotes, packing, unpacking, address changes, stressing about money and lack of space, job applications, interviews, organising and celebrating my 30th birthday and lots of other life distractions. There was some good stuff too like baking, moving to London, finding a new job which I started in July, seeing friends and family both virtually and FINALLY a few actually in person. However, this has meant that reading has taken a back seat for a while, I managed to squeeze in the reading of a few books to completion in between though.

Those chosen few were:

The subtle art of not giving a f**k

The Mark Manson book that I had heard so much about, so I gave it a go. Its secondary title is ‘a counterintuitive approach to living a good life’. If you do not like expletives I would not recommend this book to you as they feature frequently throughout the text. However, if like me it does not faze you the messages within the swearing is quite thought provoking.

Mark Manson discusses; our habits as communities and individuals, how we care too much about a lot of things, vulnerability, failure, relationships, connection, how to choose what to care about and why we should, common problems, ‘disappointment panda’, unhealthy mindsets, self-awareness, our values, choices, rejection, boundaries and so many other topics.

The book is just over 200 pages long, but I had to read it in sections to be able to digest what I was reading along the way. I wanted to make sure I was processing it all as I read rather than devouring the whole text and getting overwhelmed. It challenges a lot of what most people would probably include in a column of ‘what is normal’.

I would definitely recommend this book.

Everything is f*cked

A second book by Mark Manson, this one is ‘A book about hope’. As with his first, this book features the ‘f’ bomb quite heavily, but not as often as in ‘the subtle art’. A big chunk of part 1 of this book covers religion, spirituality and belief systems in a slightly unusual way which threw me off a little but it gets back on track. It also discusses ‘the uncomfortable truth’, the fight between our feeling brains and thinking brains, Nietzsche, Greek mythology and more. Part 2 talks about Kant, Einstein, the differences between child, adolescent and adult mindsets, personal growth, maturity, freedom (and not in the way you might think), pain, the pursuit of happiness, Quang Duc and Vietnam, antifragility, meditation, fake news, Edward Bernays, Freud, money, feelings, marketing, Plato, AI, algorithms and his own hopes for the future.

This book is less than 250 pages long (if you don’t read the acknowledgments, footnotes etc) and it took me a long time to read it. Mostly due to not finding the time, but I didn’t find part 1 as engaging as the first book if I’m being completely honest. However, part 2 I got through quite quickly as it was more my style of writing. Lots of things to think about and reflect on. There are also lots of philosophers I feel I should research into more.

A good read but not as highly recommended as his first book.

You are a badass at making money

Part of a collection by Jen Sincero which I so far really enjoy. My first experience of these books was the ‘you are a badass’ which was included in my winter reads post. The way in which Jen writes is like she is having a conversation with you, it feels direct but informal which I love. There are examples of how other people have succeeded and quotes interspersed throughout the book.

This book is all about improving your relationship with money. Learning your subconscious negative bias towards it and why you think in that way. Techniques on how to find out your negative money talk and how to overcome it. There are mantras, case studies, success stories, quotes, and a bit of light homework at the end of each chapter.

Out of the books I’ve read in these seasons, this is by far my favourite. I read it in the quickest time and didn’t feel like I wanted to give up on it like I had moments of in most of the other books.

All of these books I read on kindle which I always find a bit strange. I much prefer reading from paper copies and physically turning the pages rather than swiping through but the messages still got through to me. Having mostly unpacked now (and after buying a few more books as a payday treat) I have access to physical books again. I started on my collection of physical self development books as soon as I finished the kindle ones above. I’ll be going through some of those in the next instalment of my seasonal reads at the end of autumn (this year is flying by so quickly!)

What were your spring reads/summer reads?

What books have you read so far this year that you would recommend? Are you a fan of self help books?

What books have helped you get/keep on track to pursue your dreams?

I hope the perfect book comes to you soon to help you on your way to your dream life.

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Rachel Parker

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