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Motivating and inspiring books - Elizabeth Gilbet and Emma Isaacs

Two books to bump to the top of your reading list

Are you feeling…flat? Lacklustre? A bit frazzled at the edges?

Despite what it may sound like, this is not an ad for hair care.

This my friends is a public service announcement.

I have, completely by accident, or perhaps by the work of some divine being, stumbled across the most inspiring, motivating and energising duo of books to ever exist.

It’s exciting, no? I feel giddy with power just thinking about it. I feel like with these two books in my arsenal (ahem, on my coffee table), why, I’m almost invincible.

You see, I too was feeling flat, lacklustre. I was feeling frazzled.

And then a friend gifted me a book.

And then I gifted myself a second book.

And everything kinda shifted.

I was given a fresh, new perspective.

So what were they?

Well I’ll tell you but be warned, be prepared to be filled, buoyed even, by the delectable wisdom of the two intelligent, successful, self-aware, adventure-making women who authored these books.

In no particular order (ok, the order I read them in), here they are…

  1. Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear, Elizabeth Gilbert

  2. Winging It: Stop Planning, Start Doing: Why Action Beats Planning Every Time, Emma Isaacs

Did you guess them? Have you read them? Do you love them? If your answers were no, no, no, stay with me.

Most people know Elizabeth Gilbert from her incredibly famous book-turned-blockbuster movie, Eat, Pray, Love. Big Magic comes after the success of Eat, Pray Love, and after many successes and sorrows that Elizabeth has lived through, so you can be sure she knows what she’s talking about.

In her book, Elizabeth guides you through the process of making magic happen. Magic, which in Elizabeth’s world is creative living, can be whatever you want it to be – painting, dancing, writing,cooking, innovating, making music. She flips accepted notions of creativity and success on their heads, teaches you that courage is about making room for fear but not letting it hijack you (her “welcoming speech” for fear alone is worth its weight in gold), that you need to nurture ideas or set them free to find their true home, and that whatever you do, to stay curious and keep working at it – not for money or recognition but because it’s what you’re here to do.

Then there’s Emma Isaacs. If you’re a working woman in Australia, there’s a good chance you already know Emma, or her company, Business Chicks. Long a fan of Business Chicks, a company that exists to make the world a better place for women, and Emma, known for being one of the loudest voices in support of women in Australian business, picking up Winging It was a no-brainer.

Where Big Magic talks about creativity, Winging It focuses on business, but at their core they’re talking about the same thing – cultivating a life you’re excited to live. As I flicked through chapter after chapter, it was like Emma was speaking directly to me through the pages. Here was more advice to move beyond fear. To quit worrying about what the next person is doing. To put the hard work in without complaint. To stop thinking and take action when inspiration hits. To live kindly and go the extra mile.  

It was a blissful few weeks of reading.

When I finished, I started again. This time with a pencil in hand.

Notes were scrawled in margins (delightfully spacious in both books, I’m happy to report) and phrases were underlined for impact. Each page dripping in experience from accomplished, messy, purpose-filled lives.

I no longer felt flat.

Suddenly I’m full of ideas for the blog. I’m up early exercising. Outdoors. In winter. Tonight, I baked cookies!

But enough about me and more about you.

Are you ready to feel something? To change something? Are you ready to get some really bloody good advice from people who haven’t done it all but, quite frankly, have done a fair bit?

Well then, quick! Navigate on over to your favourite online bookstore and, if you’re feeling bold (and why shouldn’t you be), place your orders.   

Happy reading, creating and magic-making, friends.

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  • Reply Steph

    Sounds amazing Bec. I need to get my hands on these books! I think reminders like these, cultivating a life enjoyable to live, are the type of reminders that never get old

    August 5, 2018 at 11:12 pm
    • Reply Bec

      Thanks, Steph. I agree! They really helped challenge my thinking on what success means to me, and why I do what I do.
      Always happy to lend my copies if you don’t mind some scrawling in the margins!

      August 6, 2018 at 8:29 am

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