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Self help books for the New Year, selected by Charlotte Helmer and Jennifer Adams. Summaries and book covers from ContentCafe. January 2011.

On Spirituality

  • The Art of Happiness in a Troubled World by the Dalai Lama and Howard C. Cutler
    A self-help book rare for its thoughtfulness, community spirit, and reverence for wisdom and experience, that celebrates the depth of human capacity for wonder and reason while offering no easy answers... Indeed, this book is for anyone--Buddhist, Christian, agnostic, or otherwise--seeking a happy life in a happier world. BZDZ.B849ar 2009

  • Made for Goodness: and why this makes all the difference by Desmond M. Tutu and Mpho A. Tutu
    edited by Douglas C. Abrams
    In his most personal and inspirational book to date, a beloved Nobel Prize-winner joins his daughter, an Anglican minister, to share a powerful vision on why each of us can find hope and joy even in troubled times--because we are all made for goodness. CK.T881m 2010

On Addiction

  • Addiction: a 14-part series (DVD)
    Strives to break through the myths and explain what addiction really is, what causes it, and how to get the best available treatments. 4 discs. Q.Ad23 2007 DVD

  • Undrunk: a skeptic's guide to AA by A.J. Adams
    A.J. Adams uses self-deprecating humor, entertaining anecdotes, and frank descriptions to introduce readers to the complete Alcoholics Anonymous 'undrunk' lifestyle. Beginning with the story of his first AA meeting, he takes the mystery out what goes on behind closed doors, in order to encourage addicts who are reluctant to get help walk through them. QFUA.Ad17u 2009

  • iWant: my journey from addiction and overconsumption to a simpler, honest life by Jane Velez-Mitchell
    Drawing from her personal experiences with a wide range of addictions, a nationally recognized television personality empowers addicts of all kinds to confront the underlying issues that are masked by their addictions and create new habits that lead to happiness and fulfillment. EV543.A 2009

On Weight Loss

  • The Mayo Clinic Diet: eat well, enjoy life, lose weight
    A simple healthy diet from a leading authority in health and nutrition is divided into two phases--"Lose It!", where the readers can lose 6 to 10 pounds in two weeks, and "Live It!", where readers learn how to keep the pounds off through healthy living--in a book that includes meal planners, recipes, exercise tips and more. RW.M454 2010

  • The Skinny: on losing weight without being hungry: the ultimate guide to weight loss success by Louise Aronne
    Explains how our bodies are programmed on a genetic level to resist weight loss, and how to fix internal biology by adjusting eating and exercise habits one step at a time to defeat hunger and cravings and keep the weight off for good. RW.Ar67s 2009

On Budgeting

On Career

On Hobbies

  • Shop Class as Soulcraft: an inquiry into the value of work by Matthew B. Crawford
    With wit and humor, the author deftly mixes the details of his own experience as a tradesman and then proprietor of a motorcycle repair shop with more philosophical considerations. HF.C858s 2009

  • Creative Girl: the ultimate guide for turning talent and creativity into a real career by Katherine Sise
    If there’s no stability in the corporate world, why not do what you love? Creative Girl shows women how to turn their talents into a money-making career…smartly. Whether readers are just tapping into their creativity and want to see where it takes them, or if they’re already making a creative living and know it’s time to grab hold of the next level of success, this book has specific advice for women at varying stages. IKMV.Si81c 2010

On Depression

  • Hide & Seek: how I laughed at depression, conquered my dears and found happiness by Wendy Aron
    Hilarious and refreshingly honest, this chronicle of a year-long journey of self-exploration and self-help offers solace and solidarity to the myriad sufferers of clinical depression and anxiety disorders. A far cry from the typical self-help manual, this wry and subversive account is leavened with a healthy dose of humble pie and a keen sense of the absurd. QFN.31Ar67h 2008

  • The Mindful Way Through Depression: freeing yourself from chronic unhappiness by Mark Williams
    Written in clear, friendly prose, and filled with practical tips and frequent case studies, this guide gives the reader instruction in applying mindfulness to their life with the specific goal of alleviating depression. QFN.M661w 2007

On Happiness

  • Seven Pleasures: essays on ordinary happiness by Willard Spiegelman
    Spiegelman takes a look at the possibilities for achieving ordinary secular happiness without recourse to either religion or drugs. In this erudite and frequently hilarious book of essays, he discusses seven activities that lead naturally and easily to a sense of well-being. Seven Pleasures is a marvelously engaging guide to the pursuit of happiness, and all its accompanying delights. BQS.Sp44s 2009

  • The Little Book on Meaning: why we crave it, how we create it by Laura Berman Fortgang
    Life coach/interfaith minister Fortgang believes people can find meaning if they look for it in small, incidental events. Readers looking for something that goes beyond self-help's usual "love yourself" tenet will appreciate this heartfelt book. BTB.B456L 2009

  • The Dance: moving to the rhythms of your true self by Oriah Mountain Dreamer
    Practical, inspiring, and profoundly illuminating, The Dance is an invitation to discover a place of connection, serenity, and joy that is uniquely our own. BTB.M864d 2001

  • Happy at Last: the thinking person's guide to finding joy by Richard O'Connor
    Draws on the latest scientific and psychological research to discuss how the brain responds to happy stimuli and can be trained for greater receptivity to happiness, in a guide that shares practical advice and exercises on how to develop core skills for managing sadness and experiencing happiness in today's world.' BQS.Oc5h 2008'

  • The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch with Jeffrey Zaslow
    Reflections of a Carnegie Mellon computer science professor who lectured on "Really achieving your childhood dreams," shortly after having been diagnosed with terminal cancer. His advice concerned seizing the moment while living, rather than dying. BQS.P287L 2008

On Making a Difference

  • Do One Green Thing: saving the earth through simple everyday choices by Mindy Pennybacker
    Everything you need to know is right here at your fingertips. Unlike a lot of other overwhelming green guides on the market, this is green decision making in bite sized pieces. Forward by Meryl Streep. PYSE.P385d 2010

  • The 100 Best Volunteer Vacations to Enrich Your Life by Pam Grout
    From building houses in Appalachia to saving sea turtles in Costa Rica to teaching English in Thailand, this book is a rich resource of ways to use your skills to help out the world and reap some lasting benefits yourself. G.6G918o 2009

  • The Life You Can Save: acting now to end world poverty by Peter Singer
    Singer contends that we need to change our views of what is involved in living an ethical life. To help us play our part in bringing about that change, he offers a seven-point plan that mixes personal philanthropy (figuring how much to give and how best to give it), local activism (spreading the word in your community), and political awareness. IG.Si64L 2009

  • 365 Ways to Change the World: how to make a difference one day at a time by Michael Norton
    Presents a year's worth of locally applicable conscionable acts through which everyday people can make practical differences in today's world, from reserving no-spending days and planting a "peace pole" to sewing AIDS memorial quilt panels. IAE.N825t 2007

Category: Reading Lists

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