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Self-Help for the Self-Help Averse

By Beth Clark • January 22, 2019

Helping Yourself Without "Self-Help"

(Disclaimer: we do use the term "self-help" but only because the thesaurus alternatives were lame and "independent quest for human improvement" doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue.) If the term "self-help" makes you roll your eyes and groan or the thought of going on a play date with your inner tween as part of improving your life makes you cringe, then this blog is for you. Ditto if you developed an aversion to "self-help" after a previous attempt had you repeating embarrassingly cheesy (and meaningless) mantras to yourself in the mirror or enduring six chapters of depressing stories before getting to what you needed. (But giving up at that point because you felt so depressed, which wasn’t your actual problem). Traditional self-help books will always exist for people who need them (not judging), but there’s a whole sub-genre for those who prefer the cut-to-the-chase-no-cheese-swear-at-me-and-make-me-laugh approach. Based on how many of the titles below are bestsellers, that’s a lot of you. And now, the books!

For Straight-Talk: Sarah Knight

"How many times do I have to tell someone I don’t eat sushi before they will accept it and allow both of us to move forward with our lives? I KNOW PEOPLE ENJOY SUSHI. I THINK IT SMELLS LIKE THE BOTTOM OF A DOCKWORKER’S SHOE." — Sarah Knight, Recovering Perfectionist

Anti-guru Sarah Knight’s You Do You: How to Be Who You Are and Use What You've Got to Get What You Want is about putting your happiness first instead of letting others tell you what to do, how to do it, or why it can't be done…without losing friends or alienating people. In her trademark no-bullsh*t way, she imparts advice about how to take risks, silence the doubters, and prove the haters wrong, as well as:

  • The Tyranny of "Just Because"
  • The social contract and how to amend it
  • Turning "flaws" into strengths (aka "mental redecorating")
  • Why it's not your job to be nice
  • Letting your freak flag fly

Get Your Sh*t Together: How to Freak Out Less, Accomplish More, and Generally Win at Life is straight talk on cutting through the bullsh*t cycle of self-sabotage to get happy and stay that way by organizing the f*cks you want and need to give. In her second "self-help to swear by" guide, you'll learn three simple tools for getting your sh*t together, how to manage anxiety, avoid avoidance, and conquer your fear of failure, plus practical ways to spend less and save more. To help you stay on track, there’s also the Get Your Sh*t Together Journal.

The Life-Changing Magic of Not Giving a F*ck: How to Stop Spending Time You Don't Have with People You Don't Like Doing Things You Don't Want to Do is Knight’s first book, and it brilliantly parodies Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up while taking a blunt, unfiltered approach to ridding yourself of unwanted obligations, shame, and guilt so you can give your f*cks to people and things that make you happy instead. Her two-step NotSorry Method for mental decluttering will help you unleash the power of not giving a f*ck about family drama, having a "bikini body," or co-workers' opinions so you can live your best life instead of being stressed out, overbooked, and underwhelmed by it.

For Badasses Who’ve Forgotten How to Use The Force: Jen Sincero

You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life is the self-help book for people who desperately want to improve their lives but don’t want to get busted doing it. Success coach Jen Sincero is in a category of her own, and in 27 bite-sized chapters of hilarious stories, sage advice, easy exercises, and the occasional swear word, she helps you change the self-sabotaging beliefs and behaviors that are stopping you from getting what you want. You’ll learn how to love what you can't change, how to change what you don't love, and how to use The Force to kick some serious ass so you can create a life you love.

You Are a Badass at Making Money: Master the Mindset of Wealth
Hilariously and honestly drawing on her own transformation from living in a converted garage with tumbleweeds blowing through her bank account to traveling the world in style, Sincero channels the same inimitable sass and practicality that made You Are a Badass a bestseller. If you’re not making the kind of money you want to be or you have limiting beliefs around it, she will help you uncover what's holding you back, give your doubts, fears, and excuses the heave-ho, and relate to money in a new (and lucrative) way. She does a brilliant job of conveying the concept that financial abundance is an inside job that begins with your mindset and has no limits.

Her brand new book, You Are a Badass Every Day: How to Keep Your Motivation Strong, Your Vibe High, and Your Quest for Transformation Unstoppable, keeps the breakthroughs you made in the first two books going strong by keeping you motivated, holding you accountable, and guiding you over the speed bumps of transformation. (Note: We wanted to include it since it’s a companion to Jen Sincero’s first two books, but because it was just released, we don’t have it in stock yet except on audio, so be sure to add it to your Wish List, and we’ll notify you when we do!)

For Head-Dwellers: Gary John Bishop and Dan Harris

In Unf*k Yourself: Get Out of Your Head and into Your Life, Gary John Bishop more than earns his spot next to Sarah Knight and Jen Sincero as one of the "cool kids" who gets it done ("it" being your self-empowerment and growth) with a no-BS, no excuses demolition of the things that are making you feel fu*ked up and replaces them with seven assertions that will unfu*k you: I am willing. I am wired to win. I got this. I embrace the uncertainty. I am not my thoughts; I am what I do. I am relentless. I expect nothing and accept everything. (So you can lead the life you were meant to have.)

10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help That Actually Works — A True Story author Dan Harris wanted to call his book "The Voice in My Head Is an Asshole" but went with "10% Happier" instead. After the thing he always thought was his greatest asset (the incessant voice in his head) caused him to have an on-air, full-on freak-out, Harris had to find an effective way to shush it. The answer surprised him, but it worked, so he takes you on a ride from the outer reaches of neuroscience to the inner sanctum of network news to the bizarre fringes of America's spiritual scene and leaves you with a takeaway that could actually change your life.

For Women Who Need to Get it Together Financially: Nicole Lapin

Rich Bitch: A Simple 12-Step Plan for Getting Your Financial Life Together...Finally by financial expert Nicole Lapin shows women how to take charge of their lives by taking charge of their money. Speaking as a friend instead of a lecturer or know-it-all, she lays out a 12-Step Plan in which she shares her experiences—mistakes and all—of getting her own finances in order. She put a modern, sassy spin on traditional financial wisdom and takes a fresh approach to deciding how to spend your money. There are some hard-and-fast rules about finance, but her advice focuses on investing in yourself so you don’t have to stress over the little things, rehabs any bad money habits you might have, and provides you with a sustainable plan you can thrive on.

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Comedy | Self_Help
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