15 Nov The Most Inspiring Books We Read in 2019
Estimated reading time: 5 minutes
When we launched Streetlamp Creative earlier this year, we made it a point to read all books on entrepreneurship, positivity, and work-life balance that we could get our hands on. These six are the ones that stuck with us, made us LOL, and kicked our butts into gear. Read on, and get inspired!
This was, possibly, the definitive book for our entire year. Jen Sincero is a hilarious, relatable author and world-renowned speaker/coach who uses her real-life stories and experiences to teach us all how to channel our inner badass. In 27 easy-to-read chapters, she walked us through concepts as esoteric as universal energy and as concrete as unapologetically charging what you’re worth. This book is a delightful, funny, and inspiring read – and a wonderful audiobook to play on repeat, too! It’s impossible to finish this one without feeling motivated to take action and make positive changes in your life.
Heather is an enthusiastic runner, so her picks on this list lean toward strong female athletes. In this book, Olympic runner Deena Kastor shares her story and explains how a positive minset helped her secure record-breaking American times in almost every distance, from the 5k to the marathon. She also earned America’s first Olympic medal in the marathon in twenty years! There’s no question that Deena is a naturally talented runner, but her positivity tips and techniques can be applied to any endeavor in your athletic, business, or personal life!
Dr. Kristen Neff is one of the world’s leading experts on self-compassion – in fact, she was the first one to define the term more than a decade ago! Self-compassion is the idea of treating ourselves with kindness and shifting our mindset from self-criticism toward self-acceptance, mindfulness, and forgiveness. It’s all too easy to focus on our shortcomings and forget to appreciate our inherent worthiness as human beings. Dr. Neff’s book is an indispensable resource if you’ve found yourself overwhelmed, exhausted, and in need of self-care.
In Year of Yes, Shonda Rhimes teaches us how to summon the courage to say “yes” to opportunities outside our comfort zones. This New York Times bestseller was written by the creator of TV shows including Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal and executive producer of How to Get Away With Murder. While her characters are often outspoken, Rhimes herself is an introvert, which makes her story all the more relateable. Using a raw, honest voice and witty anecdotes, she teaches us how our world can expand when we start with the mindset that anything is possible.
While Jen Sincero’s book above has claimed the “badass” title, there’s no doubt that Catra Corbett is one of the most badass women we’ve ever come across. Catra is a vegan ultramarathoner and former meth addict. In this memoir, she shares her incredible story in detail for the first time. Nicknamed the “Dirt Diva,” Catra is a heavily-pierced, tattooed runner with brightly-colored hair and even brighter running attire. She’s the first American woman to run 100+ miles on more than 100 occasions, and she’s competed in more than 250 ultramarathons. She holds the Fastest Known Time for a number of West Coast trails, and she once finished a 212-mile race, turned around, and ran the whole dang thing all over again.
Hopefully, we don’t need to explain this one to you. The entire Harry Potter series is a beloved masterpiece that helps us reconnect with our childhoods and escape into a world of magic, courage, humor, and love. We’ve both been rereading the series this year. In Deathly Hallows, the storied trio venture outside the comfort of Hogwarts and directly into the fight against He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named. 12 years after this book’s release date, it feels as timely and relevant as ever. Fun fact: Heather is a Hufflepuff while Emma is a Gryffindor!