Self Help Challenge—For Us and a Better World

For our next challenge, Laura and I each picked a book you might categorize as “self-help” to read and follow. Our intention isn’t just to improve ourselves; we hope that by using the concepts, strategies and practices from the books, we’ll be better equipped to address the endless stream of confounding problems our society is facing.

“The 21st century has been marked by crises that force us to re-learn where we fit, and how we should get where we want to be,” writes Kelli Maria Korducki of Forge by Medium. ” The personal “ladder of success” feels increasingly outdated when set against a giant framework of systems and technologies, involving billions of other people.” She goes on to present a list of life changing books you can find here. I’ve read many of the books on Korducki’s list, and we suggest two more.

Laura is reading The Body Is Not an Apology: The Power of Radical Self-Love by Sonya Renee Taylor, who is a poet, author and activist. Laura says, “Taylor isn’t interested in self confidence or self acceptance, that’s waaaay too easy. Her thesis is that radical self love is the only way to change your relationship with your body, which will then make it possible to change society. She wants us to move from body shame to creating a more just, equitable and compassionate world. I’m excited and a little nervous about the journey!”

I ‘m reading Think Like a Monk: Train Your Mind for Peace and Purpose Everyday by Jay Shetty, the host of the popular podcast On Purpose. I heard Shetty interviewed on another podcast and was attracted to his charismatic speaking style and the fact that this handsome man, who is now married and very much part of the material world, actually lived as a monk for several years in India. I’m a sucker for anything that speaks to finding your purpose, which Shetty defines as “passion in the service of others”. At age 57, it’s high time I found mine.

We’re already deep into our two books and will report back with our key learnings in a couple of days. But until then, we’d love to hear if you’ve read any books that were transformational, or even just plain useful. Self-improvement is a great fit for our mission here at Style Challengers. Nothing’s more stylish than smarts!

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