Read It Up

Miles Redd

I was thinking about taking a cute, unrealistic, completely styled photo of my bedside table to show you what I am reading in an artful, perfect without trying way. But I don't have time to go buy some fresh flowers - girl's gotta work! - so let's just all admire Miles Redd's book collection above. Below are a few currents on my kindle and bedside table.

I can rarely read one book at a time unless it is really ridiculous and juicy (ummm The Husband's Secret). True to my ADD roots, I like to flip around between reads - usually fiction and self growth books as I like to call them - hey, I'll take all the help I can get. (But I am a little embarrassed about Amazon's recommending Maria Menuos' latest book - I'm sure it's a wonderful book but lawd. )

Who isn't reading The Goldfinch right now? It is long and I thought a little hard to get into but now things seems to be rolling easily. Everyone whom I spoken with that has finished it says its ah-maaazing. So, I'm plowing through the 700 page novel.

It Starts with Food. Have you all heard of the Whole 30 movement?  I came across it through Jenna Rammell's instagram feed. The Small Fry blog contributor and mother of two took on the Whole 30 challenge and instagrammed her way through the meals and adventures of committing to the clean eating experience. Which lead me to the book that started it all: It Starts with Food. The book, (which I'm about half way through) outlines the scientific and emotional impact that food has on your body before. And man is it right! We get tired at 10am and 3pm everyday for a reason - and reaching for that sugar loaded granola bar or coffee only perpetuates the problem. The idea (I think - still reading...) is to eat only unprocessed foods for 30 days. And as much organic as you can get in. No booze, no coffee, no juice, no dairy, no legumes. The goal is to eliminate certain foods to see how it impacts your body, which has lead to an endless amount of positive results. The program has been credited with significantly alleviating, if not curing, symptoms associated with joint pain, crohn's disease, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, skin conditions and more. With those results, I am gearing up to do a Whole 30 experience of my own. More on that later...

And lastly on the bedside table, The Gifts of Imperfection. I am a huge Brene Brown fan - I think I've even blogged about her here before. Don't even get me started. Oh wait, too late I'm already rolling. My oh so lucky husband has gotten to hear all about her as I've followed him around the house reading excerpts from her books. But if you aren't familiar, check out her Ted Talks.

I am rereading her books all the time for a little inspiration - and that's easy to find in her writing especially with all the underlining and overly enthusiastic stars and exclamation marks I've put on the pages. Here are a few gems from Brene's research:

"Authenticity is the daily practice of letting go of what we think we're supposed to be and embracing who we are." 

"Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are- Marianne Williamson".  Next to that sentence in the book, I wrote, "BOOM!". Because that sentence is just so good.  I see so many people forget to be grateful and spend so much energy stressing about what they don't have or the fact that they think their life doesn't look like someone else's.
Over it. 
We are all too damn lucky to not be grateful for every single moment we get to have - especially in the part of the world that we live in. I feel grateful for every moment in every day even if it's an awful day. At least I got to live it.  From the clean water coming out of my faucet (that instilled in me by Unicef) to my job and even the past jobs that I didn't get. And if I see something amazing that someone else has or experiences, I feel grateful that they get to experience that and that if I want to, I can work my way to that place.

"You can't do anything brave if you're wearing the straight jacket of 'what will people think'" So true. The second you let go of caring what other people think you can start living the way you actually want - which is way more fun and fulfilling.

"Our stories are not meant for everyone. Hearing them is a privilege, and we should always ask ourselves this before we share: "Who has earned the right to hear my story?" If we have one or two people in our lives who can sit with us and hold space for our shame stories, and love us for our strengths and struggles, we are incredibly lucky." In a world filled with so much social media that counts the number of friends, and followers and likes that we have - it's nice to realize that all that does not matter. It doesn't. What feeds me is really great conversation with people that show up for me regularly and that I show up for in return. And having gratitude for the quality of those relationships enriches everything even more.

Also, basically all of page 82 and 83. And the whole book. I mean, I could go on about this for days. Clearly.

Would love to hear any great reads that you have! Comment below or shoot me an email!