I have created this resource list from books and other materials that I have used through the years. All these materials have inspired me in some way. I have rated the materials on a six star scale. A resource that earned six stars is one I refer back to often and find myself recommending often. I have also tried to write short comments on the resources to give an idea of what to expect. Understand that reviews are my opinions exclusively.
You will find the topic areas of:
I hope you find this list helpful.
Emphasis on Inspirational/Self-Help:
Beck, Martha. Finding Your Own North Star: Claiming the Life You Were Meant to Live. New York: Three Rivers Press, 2001.******LOVE THIS BOOK! I often recommend this one. It is easy to read and really helps women take an inventory of what is in their lives is meaningful and what is just taking up space.
Beck, Martha. Steering By Starlight: The Science and Magic of Finding Your Destiny. New York: Rodale, 2008. *****This book is really good as well. It is the book you should read after the North Star. She is more specific about overcoming your barriers.
Carlson, Richard. The Don’t Sweat Guide for Couples: Ways to Be More Intimate, Loving and Stress-Free in Your Relationship. New York: Hyperion, 2001. ***Short and sweet.
Ford, Debbie. The Best Year of Your Life. San Francisco: Harper San Francisco, 1993.***This is a nice way to get some guidance, although I went to work through it and I stopped half way. I do think she is very smart and clever in how she asks you to look at pieces of your life so I think this could be really helpful.
Ford, Debbie. The Dark Side of the Light Chasers. New York: Riverhead Books, 1998.****I read this a long time ago but this book was eye opening. I liked that she has you look at the parts of you that are often uncomfortable. So often we try to deny these qualities in ourselves and it creates more problems.
Hendrix, Harville. Getting the Love You Want: A Guide for Couples. New York: Harper Row Publishers, 1988.******OLD RECOMMENDATION that still works. Harville has an amazing way of looking at our partnerships and helping us to understand why we choose the people we do. He has simple easy to follow exercises that can help you gain self-knowledge.
Hollis, Rachel. Girl Wash your face. Nashville, Tennessee: Nelson Books, 2016. **** Hard to say, talks about the lies we tell ourselves as women. Some chapters may resonate more than others but the bottom line is she has some good points, she is real and talks about things that are relevant to us as women.
Hurley, Kathleen and Dobson, Theodore. My Best Self: Using the Enneagram to Free the Soul. San Francisco: Harper San Francisco, 1993.****If you do not know anything about the enneagram I would recommend doing some reading about it. It can be helpful in understanding your personality and give you suggestions on how to use your strengths and work on your weaknesses. This is a good one to google and see what book may interest you, many have been written. There are also books that talk about how different personalities work together for couples.
Katie, Byron. Loving What Is: Four Questions that Can Change Your Life. New York: Three Rivers Press, 2002.****Simple, and straight forward. This book helps you to look at the way you think about different situations in your life. She really has a simple way to look at almost anything and have a more healthy understanding of the situation.
Louden, Jennifer. Comfort Secrets for Busy Women. Naperville, Illinois: Source Books, 2003.**This is an easy read and a very cute book as a gift. It again gives practical suggestions for slowing down.
Markman, Howard and Stanley, Scott and Blumberg, Susan. Fighting For Your Marriage, The Best Selling Marriage Enhancement and Divorce Prevention Book. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2001.****Easy to read with good activities. Must admit that I have not used it very often with clients. However, it is a good straight forward book.
McBride, Karlyn. Will I Ever Be Good Enough? Healing the Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers. New York: Free Press, 2008.******If the title interest you then you should read this one. I have recommended this to my friends, clients, and my mother.
Neff,Kristen. Self Compassion. New York:Harpers Collins Publisher, 2011. *****This is an excellent book that will give you a new appreciation for how important it is for us look upon ourselves with kindness and offer ourselves grace in times of difficulty.
Quindlen, Anna. A Short Guide to a Happy Life. New York: Random House, 2000. ******This is my favorite bathtub book. I have read this one more times than I can count. When you are finished there is no way you will not feel good and it only takes about 15 minutes to read cover to cover.
Ruiz, Don Miguel. The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom. San Rafael, California: Amber-Allen Publishing, 1997.****Short and sweet with a good message. It breaks things down into four behaviors you can focus on to feel better in life.
St. James, Elaine. Inner Simplicity: 100 Ways to Regain Peace and Nourish Your Soul. New York: Hyperion, 1995.***This is another short and sweet read.
Seligman, Martin. Authentic Happiness: Using Positive Psychology to Realize Your Potential for Lasting Fulfillment. New York: Free Press, 2002. ******RECOMMEND THIS VERY HIGHLY. This is not an easy read but luckily it also comes on compact disc. You can also go to his website and take a quiz that will identify your strengths for free. A bonus is that there is a quiz for children as well.
Susanka, Sarah. The Not So Big Life: Making Room for What Really Matters. New York: Random House, 2007.******Love this book. This was the book I read that finally got me to really take quiet time or meditate whatever you want to call it, I was able to slow down.
Wilkinson, Bruce. The Dream Giver. Sisters, Oregon: Multnomah Publishers, 2003.****Energizing. If you have a dream in your life and you have not been able to get there this book makes you think about it and gets you energized to work towards it.
Emphasis on Cancer
Geist, Laura and Sorenson Susan. Praying your Way Through Cancer.***** short encouraging daily devotionals written by women for women.
Kaelin,Carolyn. Living Through Breast Cancer. McGraw-Hill. 2005 *** Intro to breast cancer, basic facts and things you can use to make things a bit easier.
Geffen, Jeremy. The Journey Through Cancer, An Oncologists Seven-Level Program for the Healing and Transforming the Whole Person. New York: Three Rivers Press, 2000. **** Currently reading and seems to give options for a healthy lifestyle to prevent reoccurrence.
Greenlee, Sharon. Grief Entanglements: Understanding Unresolved Grief and What You Can Do About It.**** This is a wonderful book about grief. The author speaks from a point of view of personally having experienced her own deep grief.
Moorjani, Anita. Dying to be Me. Carlsbad, California: Hay house,Inc, 2012**** Interesting book about the authors 24 hour death experience and her finding a release in her life from expectations and self judgement. As a gentle spoiler alert, this author believes that her recovery and complete remission, from the cancer that almost killed her, is a result of her letting go of the negative, suffocating beliefs she had in her life.
Servan, David. The Anti-Cancer-A new Way of Life. New York:Penquin Books, 2008. *****Very good book that talks about the emotional and physical consequences of being treated and diagnosed with cancer. The author is a medical doctor and also provides holistic and natural ways to help your body heal.
The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer by Siddhartha Mukherjee ******
This is video offered on PBS. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, The Emperor of All Maladies is a magnificent, profoundly humane “biography” of cancer—from its first documented appearances thousands of years ago through the epic battles in the twentieth century to cure, control, and conquer it to a radical new understanding of its essence. This is an amazing documentary.
Emphasis on Spiritual/Religious:
Borysenko, Joan. Inner Peace for Busy People: 52 Simple Strategies for Transforming Your Life. Carlsbad, California: Hay House, Inc, 2001***More simple ideas that are paired with bible readings and reflections.
Buchanan, Mark. The Rest of God, Restoring your Soul by Restoring the Sabbath. ******This is an excellent book. If you are rushing around and never living in the present, always exhausted. It helps you to see the benefit of rest without feeling guilty. You almost feel badly, after reading this, if you do not rest.
DeMoss, Nancy. Choosing Gratitude, Your Journey to Joy, A 30 day devotional. Chicago, Illinois: Moody Publishers, 2009.******Excellent and uplifting devotional that is encouraging if you are going through a difficult time.
Doyle, Laura. The Surrendered Wife: A Practical Guide for Finding Intimacy, Passion, and Peace with a Man. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1999.**I had a difficult time with this one. I think it is probably great for some people. If you feel like everything is a power struggle you may want to google this one and read a little more.
Hanh, Thich Nhat. Peace is in Every Step: A Path for Mindfulness in Everyday Life. New York: Bantum,1991.***Simple daily meditations.
Huff, Benjamin. The Tao of Pooh. New york: Dutton, 1982.*****If you are interested in eastern philosophies this is a good starter. I also think this is a great book for mothers that want to to let go of some control and relax.
Kornfield, Jack. A Path With Heart: A Guide Through the Perils and Promises of Spiritual Life. New York: Bantam Books, 1993.****This book only gets four stars because it is difficult to read. This author on the other hand is amazing. I have attended one of his workshops and he is absolutely one of my favorites. He has mounds of books and materials. If you are interested I recommend looking at his website. He blends western and eastern philosophies very well.
Maxwell, John. Running with the Giants. Warner Books, 2002.****Inspirational stories from the Bible.
Meyer, Joyce. The Confident Woman: Start Today Living Boldly and Without Fear. New York: Warner Faith, 2006.***This is an easy read but it felt like it was lacking in a lot of substance. She does have a good message.
Mother Teresa. A Simple Path. New York: Ballantine Books, 1995.*****I just love her and what she embodies.
Nouwen, Henri. Life of the Beloved. New York: Crossroad Publishing, 1992.******This is a great book about loving yourself despite our shortcomings. I highly recommend it and have read it at least three times myself. We all have our faults and bad days.
Nowen, Henri. Here and Now Living in the Spirit. New York: Crossroads Publishing Company, 1994. ******Loved this book. It is quick and easy to read and offers short meditations and thought provoking ideas on topics such as: suffering, family, prayer, living in the present, and joy.
Nouwen, Henri. Turn My Mourning Into Dancing. Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2002.*****Great book about letting go and forgiveness, both others and ourselves.
Omartian, Stormie. The Power of a Praying Woman. Eugene, Oregon: Harvest House Publishing, 2002.**I do not remember a lot about this one, sorry.
Rohr, Richard. Everything Belongs, The Gift of Contemplative Prayer. New York: A Crossroad Book, 1999.*****This is pretty intense but incredibly good. The best I can say is that it helps you to understand how important everything is in your life the good and bad.
Shannon, Maggie. Prayers for Hope and Comfort: Reflections, Meditations and Inspirations. San Francisco: Conari Press, 2008.*****This is great too. Just short poems, and prayers for everything. It is very comforting, just like the title suggests.
Wagner, C. Peter. Your Spiritual Gifts. Ventura, California: Regal Books. *** This is a good book that can make you look at your gifts.
Emphasis on Health:
Hartmann, Thom. Walking Your Blues Away: How to Heal the Mind and Create Emotional Well-Being. Rochester, Vermont: Park Street Press, 2006.****This helps to explain why walking while solving your life issues works so well. The first chapter is the best as far as explanation.
Khalsa, Shakta Kaur. Yoga for Women: Health and Radiant Beauty at Every Stage of Life. London: DK Publishing, 2002.*****This is a great book if you want to start yoga at home. Great pictures and explanations. It even has a chapter on motherhood and postpartum, there are also some couples poses and nothing is intimidating.
Lundgren, Chris. Running and Pregnancy: How to Stay Fit, Keep Safe, and Have a Healthy Baby. Rodale Press, 2003.****Great if you want to run while pregnant.
McCall M.D., Timothy. Yoga as Medicine: For the Yogic Prescription for Health and Healing. New York: Bantam Books, 2007.***Easy to use and has many diagnosis to reference.
McCloud, Andrea. Yoga: Simple Steps for Health and Well-Being. San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 2003.****Yoga made very simple and right to the point. She gives you the pose and an explanation, divids the book into sectios depending on what you ae looking for.
Shaw, Scott. Yoga Breathing: Pranayama Made Easy. SanFranscisco, California: Weiser Books, 2004. ****Just a few short breathing exercises.
Emphasis on Motherhood:
Cardozo, Arlene. Sequencing. Canada: Collier MacMillian Canada. * This is a very old book, one of the first. The main message is that durning motherhood women are able to sequence their lives. Taking motherhood as a time to redefine their work priorities and they may decide to do something very different.
Crittenden, Ann. The Price of Motherhood: Why the Most Important Job in the World is Still the Least Valued. New York, New York: Henry Holt and Company, 2001. ****This book is filled with facts about what we as women are facing in society today. It is very interesting to understand why it is that we can feel conflicted and unsupported in motherhood.
Crittenden, Danielle. What Our Mothers Didn’t Tell Us: Why Happiness Eludes the Modern Woman. New York, New York: Touchstone, 1999.****This is another book that makes you think about societies vision of motherhood, aging, and being a women across a lifespan.
Doe, Mimi. Busy But Balanced: Practical and Inspiring Ways to Create a Calmer, Closer Family. New York, St. Martin’s Griffin, 2001.**This is a light read that you can do in parts. It has quick, little suggestions for bringing more peace. My criticism of this book is that it does not create internal, long term, change, but if you are looking for suggestions on how to be more calm or connected it can be of help.
Douglas, Susan and Michaels, Meredith. The Mommy Myth: The Idealization of Motherhood and How It Has Undermined Women. New York: Free Press, 2004.***This is a validating look at motherhood and how the media has portrayed motherhood in the last 30 years, normalizing the struggles that we as women go through.
Gottman, John and Gottman, Julie. And Baby Makes Three. New York: Crown Publishers, 2007.****** LOVE THIS BOOK and recommend it to couples with new children and couples with older children. This man has been doing research for over twenty years and brings practical, tested suggestions to your marriage.
Jeffers, Susan. I’m OK, You’re a Brat, Setting the Priorities Straight and Freeing You from the Guilt and Mad Myths of Parenthood. Los Angles: Renaissance Books, 1999.***Skimmed this book. Helps to normalize the feelings of frustration and impatience mothers can have with their children. Really addresses the guilt issue.
Isaacs, Nora. Women in OverDrive: Find Balance and Overcome Burnout at Any Age. Emeryville, California: Seal Press, 2006***This book was a little disappointing to me but again normalizes what we as women feel as we try to do so much in todays society. It also give short term, practical suggestions to slowing down. It is an easy read.
Hewlett, Silvia Ann. Creating a Life, What every woman needs to know about having a baby and a career. New York: Miramax Books, 2003**I do not remember a lot about this one. I know when I looked it over again I did not highlight much but if this is something you are struggling with it may be worth checking out.
Kaufman, Loretta, and Mary Quigley. And What Do You Do? When Women Choose to Stay Home. Berkley, California: Wildcat Canyon Press, 2000.***I remember that I liked this, but again I can not remember much. The tow women that wrote this had solid career and then decided to stay at home.
Kleiman, Karen. The Tokens of Affection. New York: Routledge, 2014. ***This book gives solid examples of attics and characters you can bring into your marriage after having a baby that can help with positive interactions in the marriage. The date and examples are solid. Warning: if you are in a difficult place you could start to feel like you are not doing much right. Relax that belief. Even if you are not currently doing many of the behaviors it does not mean your marriage is hopeless.
Krasnow, Iris. Surrendering to Motherhood: Loosing Your Mind, Finding Your Soul. New York: Hyperion, 1997.***
Lerner, Harriet. The Mother Dance: How Children Change Your Life. New York, New York: Quill, 2001.***This book looks at the struggles that mothers face across a lifetime of raising their children.
Maushart, Susan. The Mask of Motherhood: How becoming a mother changes our lives and why we never talk a bout it. Harmondsworth, Middlesex, England: Penguin Books, 2000.****I liked this book. It got a lot of press when it first came out. Mothers liked it because it was very real and frank.
Miller, Karen. Momma Zen. Bosten, Massachusetts: Trumpeter Books, 2006.***This book gives short little meditations around different topics and situations we find in motherhood.
Shields, Brooke. Down Came the Rain: My Journey Through Postpartum Depression. New York: Hyperion, 2005.****This is a good, honest story about Brooke Shields experience with Postpartum Depression.
Simpson, Bria. The Balanced Mom: Raising Your Kids Without Loosing Your Self. Oakland, California: New Harbinger Publications, Inc., 2006.****Bria gives some good suggestions for things you can do to create more balance. Her chapters are short and each reflects a specific task. If you are interested in this book just make sure the things you decide to focus on are things that are truly important to you.
Orenstein, Peggy. Flux: Women on Sex, Work, Love Kids and Life in a Half-Changed World . New York: Random House, 2000.****This book is very interesting. She is a journalist and gives a lot of good information about different life stages.
Wolf, Naomi. Misconceptions, Truth, Lies and the Unexpected on the Journey to Motherhood. New York: Anchor Books, 2003.****This is another interesting book. She looks at women’s adjustment in motherhood and gives some interesting conceptual ideas. Talks a lot about the birth process.
For the Men:
Eldridge, John. Wild At Heart: Discovering the Secrets of a Man’s Soul. Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 2001.****This was a nice book for me to read and I thought it offered some good insights to what may be motivating to men. My husband felt that it was only an ok read.
Kimes, Joanne and Kimes, Jeff. Pregnancy Sucks for Men: What to Do When Your Miracle Makes Both of You Miserable. Avon, Massachusetts: Adams Media, 2004.**I think I had higher hopes for this book. It sounds interesting but you may want to thumb through it before you purchase it or get a copy from a library if you are interested.
Real, Terrance. Two Books:
I Don’t Want to Talk About It.
How Can I get Through to You?*****Both these books are very good couples books. Good reading for both men and women. If you have a husband that does not want to talk about “It” the first book is really good. I have had men in my private practice read this and really like it. The wives also like it because they can understand a little more of what may be going on in their husbands head. The second book is good for couples. I think men can relate because it is written by a man. This is also available on compact disc so can be good discussion on trips.
Sears, William. Becoming a Father: How to Nurture and Enjoy Your Family. Schaumburge, Illinois: LaLeche League International, 1986.**It is ok. They really need some better books for dads, or maybe I just need to search a little harder.
Professional Books, Articles:
Jordan, Judith & Kaplan, Alexandra & Miller, Jean Baker & Stiver, Irene & Surrey, Janet. Women’s Growth in Connection: Writings From the Stone Center. New York: Guilford Press, 1991.******Most people may not want to read professional journal articles but if you are interested in women’s growth and development these are really interesting. There is a really interesting article about fathers and daughters in here. It may take some time to get through but is worth it (at least in my opinion).
Coelho, Paulo. The Alchemist. San Francisco: Harper San Francisco, 1993.****This was one of the first inspirational books I ever read. It is a fictional story of a boy that goes on a journey. It is filled with inspiring words about the power we have inside of us.
Pearson, Allison. I Don’t Know How She Does It. New York: Alfred A Knoff, 2002. ****This is pretty good. Definitely a discussion book about how we handle motherhood for a book club.
Weiner, Jennifer. Little Earthquakes. New York: Atria Books, 2004.****Same as above.
Anderson, Joan. A Year By the Sea. New York: Broadway Books, 1999.****This was an inspiring story about a women that takes some very personal time to find who she really is and what she cares about most in her life. Good group discussion.