The Books You Read Tell Your Story


I looked at the books on my bed, and it got me to thinking that what you read, and what you want to read, can say a lot about you, in that moment.

For me, right now there are four books on my bed. No magazines. I usually read one book at a time, but now I’m actively reading all four of them. The four I’m reading, and my rationale for doing so/what I think that says about me are:

The Opposite of Loneliness by Marina Keegan. Her tragic death as a recent college graduate overflowing with potential got a lot of publicity here in MA, because it’s where the accident happened. The eponymous essay got a lot of attention as it went viral almost immediately upon her death. That essay intrigued me, the book is popular, and I’m curious to explore what other emotions dominated mind of a young person so perfectly poised for greatness.

Self-Compassion by Kristin Neff, PhD. The cover says “Stop beating yourself up and leave insecurity behind.” Since that is what I (desperately) need to do, I’m having a crack at it. I have some friends that snicker when I dabble in self-help books, but sometimes I need it. Despite having excellent self-awareness, it is easy to forget that one is not alone, in anything really.

On Grief and Reason: Essays by Joseph Brodsky. This one was pointed out to me in a few different contexts, and I figured a cerebral yet motivating read would challenge me to stretch both my brain and emotions, and what better and more satisfying challenge is there?

Think Happy, Be Happy” by a lot of people. This small, square of a book has pages packed with happy. Quotes, pictures, trivia. You name it, it’s in there. Surround yourself with happy, and happy will follow you, right?

In total, these books reflect the critical place I am in my life’s journey, given the fragile nature of life and love, with a layer of “oh shit, I really need a job.”

But in the end it’s all good, even the things that aren’t good. Only I can choose how I look at things, how I feel, and how I respond. Sometimes I can do that on my own, sometimes I need friends, and sometimes I need my books.

Bottom line is I am doing something about it, something to help myself. Want to change? It’s as simple as starting the process. So go do something now and let positive momentum drive positive results. Just start. Now. Go. Feel happy, do happy, be happy.


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