Feel-Good Friday Book Series: Hope for the Flowers

FEEL-GOOD FRIDAY

BOOKS THAT GAVE ME SEEDS TO THRIVE (Click link for the introduction to the series)

Today I’m going way, way back. I received this book when I was fourteen years old. I was a teen in crisis.  After getting some help, I was given Hope for the Flowers by Trina Paulus. My counselor told me to hold on to it. As you can see, I did. It’s been almost 30 years now and the book still sits on my go-to bookshelf. Hope for the Flower is the reason why I’m so connected to the butterfly transformation. I pulled the book out in preparation of my upcoming seminar, because sometimes the greatest wisdom is in the simplest of details.  

In Hope for the Flowers, Paulus follows the life of two caterpillars on their journeys. She describes separation and connection so simply that even a child can understand. She talks about finding courage when there is no way to know what is coming next. The pictures and images bring on new meaning for me with every read. For a maybe 20 minute read, it allows the reader to really think about their life choices. And hopefully inspires courage to follow that call inside us no matter how scary it is to go in a different direction. 

After re-reading the book, I saw parts that I never noticed before, or at least didn’t remember acknowledging at the time. We see what we are ready to see, when we are ready to see it. We connect and absorb the material that is important to our journeys right now. I love how this works. I hope you will feel inspired to get your copy. If you do, I would love to hear what you think in the comments below. 

Favorite Quote from Hope for the Flowers

(click on the book title to check out the book for yourself)

“You must want to fly so much that you are willing to give up being a caterpillar.”

-Trina Paulus

With Love and Gratitude, 

Rachael Wolff

Feel-Good Friday Book Series: Your Creative Brain

FEEL-GOOD FRIDAY

BOOKS THAT GAVE ME SEEDS TO THRIVE (Click link for the introduction to the series)

Your Creative Brain: Seven Steps to Maximize Imagination, Productivity, and Innovation in Your Life by Shelley Carson, PhD was a game changer for me. I read the book in college for a creative processes course. I’ve written about this book once before in a post called, I’m Not Stupid After All: School Testing and Self-Worth. I have this book in hardcover and audio, and I needed both! There are self-tests and quizzes to help readers assess where their comfort mindset is, which if you truly want to understand how your brain works is a VERY powerful tool.

Shelley Carson is a Harvard professor. You’re Creative Brain is the science behind how our brains process what is in front of us. It helps us get a true view of what and where our strengths are and how to work on areas that aren’t as developed. Carson reminds us that we are all creative in different ways, and that understanding our mind’s comfort zones is key to seeing our true potential.

I used to think something was wrong with me all growing up (You can read more about my personal struggles in the link above). If I knew that I was a divergent thinker, I may not have beat myself up so much. Carson says on page 124, “Divergent thinking is a type of cognition in which you see many possible answers to question and problems. In fact, you will risk becoming overwhelmed with possibilities for creative innovation!”

The current school system can treat divergent thinkers as failures, but if they looked a little closer, they could see they are our innovators. I didn’t learn I was an divergent thinker until I was almost 40 years old. I can’t tell you how much it’s helped me knowing it. I’ve been faced with so many challenges and opportunities where I finally understood how to use my mind’s strengths.

There are so many amazing jewels this book has to offer. You definitely need a physical copy of the book to get the most from it, simply because some of the tests you need the book to do. This book won’t just help you understand your brain, but it will help you be able to see how different people feel comfortable functioning from other mindsets. It helps us in our schooling, careers, personal relationships, communities, and our inner world. When we know how our brain works, we gain understanding of how best to help ourselves succeed. We gain access to solutions and research that can help our world become better and stronger by focusing on the strengths each of us inherently have.

If you are anything like me, you will gain understanding about why it is so important that we allow people to develop their strengths, because each way of thinking is valuable. If we understand that the person in front of us is coming from a different mindset, we are more likely to ask questions than make judgments. We improve the quality of humanity when we gain understanding about ourselves and others.

Favorite Quote from Your Creative Brain:

(click on the book title to check out the book for yourself)

We are all creative. Creativity is the hallmark human capacity that has allowed us to survive thus far.”

-Shelley Carson p. 9

With Love and Gratitude,

Rachael Wolff

If you are looking for doses of daily feel-good you can follow me on social media.

Friday Feel-Good Book Series: Books that Gave Me Seeds to Thrive

New Series Starts September 20, 2019

Hello Friends, Followers, and Visitors:

I’m starting a new series! I decided Fridays was a good day to tell you about the books that gave me seeds to thrive. Each Friday, I will tell you about a book I’ve read on my journey and why I would recommend it. The books will not be in any particular order. Just know that every Friday, until I feel like I’m done, I will share one of my treasures with you. It will be your choice if you decide you want to plant one of these seeds in your garden. I encourage comments, insights, and sharing the books that helped you. You never know what book I will feel energetically pulled to read next. I tend to have a good two to three books going at a time. Just remember the name of my site, comments should come from a loving place, or they won’t be posted. If there is a quote from a book that inspires you to live better, you can share it along with the author name, book title, and the page number the quote is from.

Why am I Doing This?

I’m often asked about the books I read. For those who don’t know me, I’m an avid reader of ways to make life better. I started my love of reading about this over thirty years ago. Here are a few of my favorite topics: self-help, spirituality, personal transformation, mindfulness, meditation, yoga, healthy living, brain studies, human development, sociology, psychology, religion, and cultural anthropology. Reading all these books has helped me see the person I want to be, ways (not one way) to get there, and be open to see what could be holding me back. They helped me discover my strengths and weaknesses, along with what I was ready for and what I wasn’t. I also have read about plenty of ways I don’t want to live. 

In every book I’ve read, I’ve discovered there are no new concepts, just different ways of presenting them. If the writer is viewing a concept through a place of fear, I look at how that affects their view of interpretation. If a writer is seeing a concept through a place of love, I look to see how I’m connecting to their beliefs about the topic before I consider their perspective of truth. No matter what, I know and understand that every writer is speaking from his or her own place of truth. I understand that just because they believe a certain way of doing things is the right way, it’s up to me to decide what is the best way for me. In the end, only I can decide the perspectives of truth that I will form my reality around. No one can force us to have a belief that serves or doesn’t serve us living our best lives. We have to be open to see how our own beliefs are affecting our reality and make a choice on whether or not to keep our energy believing what we do. 

I believe I can learn from EVERYTHING I read. If I feel an energetic pull to read something, I know there was a reason I was meant to read it. I look for the lessons. There hasn’t been a book in the categories I listed above that I got nothing from. There are some that I put down, because when the energetic force stopped pulling me to read it, I knew I got what I needed. Being a reader of this kind of material, it’s good to trust the journey. We don’t know where it’s leading us. 

When I read A Return to Love by Marianne Williamson at fourteen, I had no idea the journey I was about to go on. I’ve read the book at least four times now and I find something new and different that resonates EVERY time. My fourteen-year-old self wasn’t ready for a lot of what I was reading, but it gave me seeds. I could see I wanted to live from a loving place. I just would have to go through a lot of life experiences before the material would truly sink in. 

I picked up The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle three times throughout a period of five or six years before I was ready to grasp his voice. I would make it through a couple of chapters, then put it down. I actually ended up reading A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle first. I did the Oprah course she had on it. After doing that, when I picked up The Power of Now again, I got it and loved it! I read it right when I needed to and right when it was important for a big step in my journey. 

The point is, when we are invested in this type of material, TRUST THE JOURNEY! Don’t beat yourself up about what you should read, or what you should do. You are ready when you’re ready. If you feel pulled to read something, GET THE BOOK! If you’re reading and all the sudden you stop—It’s okay! You read what you needed to for now, or you would have felt pulled to read more. Don’t get rid of the book! Sometimes you will find that it’s years before you’re ready, but it’s good to have so that when you are ready for it, you can open it and just start reading.  I can’t even begin to tell you how many times this has happened to me. 

I hope you are excited to get on board! The fun will begin soon. See you back here Friday!

With Love and Gratitude, 

Rachael Wolff ©2019