A Year Of Positive Thinking by Cyndie Spiegel

519XfFFf-vL._SX260_It’s almost December, and you know what that means – It’s time to start thinking about your New Year’s Resolution. If you’re not sure what you’re going to resolve to do in 2019, maybe you should consider making this book your resolution. It’s a book of “Daily Inspiration, Wisdom, And Courage.”

I read this for review purposes, all in a few days, but I intend to reread it throughout 2019 and follow closely the wisdom within. I hope that it will inspire me to have an even better year (as 2018 was a very good year for me).

So, the book has a tidbit of information for each day of the year. Sometimes that info takes up an entire page, sometimes a couple dates share the same page. Sometimes it’s simply a quote, other times it’s a tip sharing some way you can better your life. Through this wonderfully positive book, you will learn to imagine, create, manifest, dream, and be more grateful. And more…

I love this book. It is my new guide.

 

I received this book free from the publisher, and this is an honest and unbiased review.

Drive Thru Deception by Laurie Ayers

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Most of the time, people tell you that body language is the key to determining whether or not someone is lying to you. This book will teach you how to tell when someone is lying by actually listening to them. Laurie Ayers, a human lie detector residing in Jenison, MI, put together this “quick read” to help people learn when people are lying to them – whether you need it in your personal life or at work.

One of the things I really liked about this book (aside from it being a quick and easy read – yet full of information) is the reflection portion. At the end of each section, you will briefly reflect on what you just read – which helps you remember what you read, allowing your mind to digest the info.

My favorite tip is asking one question at a time. I’ve had experience with this, and throwing too many questions at once toward someone makes it easier for them to deceive you in their responses. I think when you ask too many questions at once, you’re also allowing them to gloss over the questions they don’t want to answer, and you may not even realize it.

The wordplay pointed out as hints that someone is lying made me a bit concerned, however. A lot of the words and phrases are things that I use in my regular daily speech and in my writing. Maybe this is an indication that I should start working on my assertiveness again, or am I just a big fat liar?

Actually, you would use what they say to you to look deeper into whether or not they’re guilty of a lie. It’s not as cut and dry as accusing someone of lying because of one single sentence.

I enjoyed reading this book. I learned a lot and just might have to change up my “normal” vocabulary some (haha). I highly recommend this book if you’re interested in spotting deception or simply interested in the art of communication itself. Grab a copy of Drive Thru Deception – Clues To Detect Deceit on Amazon.

Feel Better Fast And Make It Last by Daniel G. Amen, MD

978-1-4964-2562-5.BACKIf you want a comprehensive guide to overcoming “negativity, anxiety, anger, stress, and trauma,” Daniel G. Amen, MD, has taken his experience as a psychiatrist to develop this book to help you become more optimistic and happier. ‘Feel Better Fast And Make It Last‘ is a book that will change your life, if you read it and follow what it says.

There is so much stuff in this book that you’ll initially be overwhelmed by it – but don’t fret, once you get into the strategies, exercises, and steps that are described throughout, you’ll start getting a better understanding.

What I really liked about this book is that it has so much information – it’s not just one part of how you can feel better, it’s all of the things that you need to do in order to change your life for the better.

My favorite chapters, the ones that did the most for me, are “I Is For Inspiration” and “N Is For Nourishment.” As someone with a lot of hobbies, and someone that works in a creative career full-time, passions and inspiration play a huge role in my life (and now I am better understanding why I am so much more a positive person than a negative one, even when things seem to be going bad). The chapter on Inspiration also talks about addiction, something I’ve been able to overcome on my own (hoarding) and never had a major issue with in the more life-threatening sense (like drug addiction).

The Nutrition chapter attracts that side of me that took a ton of classes on nutrition in college. “The Feel Better Fast Diet” is filled with info on the foods that are best for your all-around health and wellness.

I enjoyed this book. I didn’t like the overabundance of brain photos (I felt like they weren’t really needed), but aside from that, it’s a book that will help you be healthier and happier.

 

I received this book from Tyndale in exchange for my honest review.

Brain Hacks by Lara Honos-Wedd, Ph.D.

Brain Hacks: Life-Changing Strategies To Improve Executive Function has a cover that claims this book will help you “Work smarter, stay focused, and achieve your goals.” It is 140+ pages of useful information that actually gave me tips that I will use forever. As someone that works with numerous clients, from home, taking on a variety of tasks (reviews, article writing, editing, etc.), and has their own creative passion projects, I find it hard to stay on task sometimes – this book has the tools that will help even the busiest worker or entrepreneur.

This book, rightfully, begins with a chapter that explains exactly what executive function is. The key, here, is to keep your business life afloat and tap into the part of you brain that focuses on work (that’s my super-simple layman’s terms description anyway). I like that this chapter is filled with questions that will help you determine your executive style, which will help you learn what strategies will best work for you when it comes to getting your work done.

The layout of this book makes it easy to read. You won’t get bored with super-long paragraphs, and you’ll find the exercises are useful and easy to follow.

Goal setting is one of my passions, but I’ve found myself so busy lately (and it’s not that steady, “regular” schedule busy), so my goal setting falls to the wayside. My work is sporadic, and I fit in my own projects every chance I get – which sometimes isn’t much. Brain Hacks has a lot of tips on goal setting – ones that I am pretty sure will assist me in making it easier to set my own goals even with a sporadic full-time schedule.

This book will make you look at the way you set goals, the way you focus (or your lack thereof), and how you organize (your stuff and your life). It’s a must for busy professionals, whether you work for someone else or for yourself.

 

I received this book free from the publisher, and this is an honest and unbiased review.

Modern Astrology by Louise Edington

Astrology has been a passion of mine since a young age, but at that time I only really delved into my sun sign. It wasn’t until I was in my twenties that I even learned what my moon sign was (It’s Aquarius, by the way). At that time I was reading a book that had all of the planetary and house info that you get from a natal chart, but it was too difficult to figure it all out. These days you can do all of that online, sometimes for free.

What I didn’t like about doing my birth, or natal, chart online was reading what everything meant online… I am a book girl, always will be. That means that holding a book in my hands with the info I need will always be my preferred method of learning. Louise Edington’s book, Modern Astrology, is just what I needed.

So, why do you need this book and a birth chart? Have you read your horoscope and spent hours trying to figure out how that “prediction” actually fit into your life? It’s sometimes hard to do because your sun sign is only one small part of who you are when it comes to astrology. By knowing where the planets were and what signs were ascending at your time and place of birth, you can understand yourself better.

I found this book to be extremely informative. I went through it with my birth chart, highlighting all of my planets and houses, and then read what it had to say. I thought, “Yep, that’s right,” “That explains things,” and “That is totally me.” Sure, there were a couple that explained me more when I was younger and less jaded.

A bonus within this book is that it contains journal prompts, as well as other things that will inspire you to learn more about your birth chart. I gave this book a five-star review on Goodreads because it is easy to use and understand, it is extremely informational on the subject matter, and it’s written in a way that allows you to enjoy reading all of the info within, even if it isn’t about your own signs!

I received this book free from the publisher, and this is an honest and unbiased review.

30-Minute Cooking For Two by Taylor Ellingson

Most recipe books are filled with recipes that feed a family. 6 to 8 servings, with maybe a few 4-serving recipes within the pages. If there are only two of you eating you can freeze those leftovers, but not all frozen leftovers are created equal. I’ve reheated frozen leftover noodle dishes only to have nightmares about the paste I had to eat afterward (yuck). So, why bother with large quantities of food when you don’t need them?

Taylor Ellingson’s 30-Minute Cooking For Two combines small portioned recipes with easy to make meals, and you don’t have to spend a ton of time slaving away in the kitchen and then get stuck with a bunch of leftovers that end up in the trash.

This isn’t a “skimpy” cookbook either. It’s not just a bunch of boring recipes from every other cookbook you’ve looked at. These are also “Healthy Dishes Without All The Fuss.” I like seeing the world “Healthy” on cookbooks.

This book starts out with tips on how to shop for two – tips that will assist you in making sure that you don’t buy more than you actually need. There are also lists of pantry staples (for the healthy pantry), must-have cooking equipment, and best of all, tips on storing any leftovers you might end up with. With a cookbook meant for cooking for two, it’s less likely you’ll have leftovers, BUT… not every person eats the same portions as everyone else.

You’ll find breakfast, lunch, and dinner recipes within these pages. There are dessert recipes, recipes for soups and salads, and pretty much anything you might be interested in dining on. That’s another thing I liked about the book – the variety. It even has smoothie recipes!

I highly recommend trying out some of the more creative recipes – like Pumpkin Fettuccine Alfredo (one that is on my list to try soon). My favorite so far has been the Teriyaki Chicken Rice Bowls. Don’t eat meat? Swap the meat portions out with your favorite soy or other meat-free product.

I gave this book five stars on Goodreads. It’s a great book that will be staying in my collection (right in my kitchen for ease of use)!

I received this book free from the publisher, and this is an honest and unbiased review.

Book Girl by Sarah Clarkson

518Ek4zaVJLI was attracted to Book Girl because I am a “book girl.” To be a writer for a living and an author, you kind of have to be. You can’t be an accomplished and talented writer without also being a reader. It’s like a rule or something.

I chose this book because it is a book about books – a book filled with reading lists. Now, the author is a student of Theology, so her book reading and interpretations revolve around her chosen religion. That aside, this is still an excellent book about books. You can read anything you want into the words you read on a page, whether you want to find connections between God or yourself.

I was surprised with how many great books are out there that I haven’t read yet. This tome is one that will guide me a bit on making sure I expand my reading repertoire some.

The author, Sarah Clarkson, breaks her lists into different categories – like the books that helped shape her and the books that inspired her. You know, if you’re a reader that is, that books are a guiding light in our lives. They help us become who we are and even avoid who we don’t want to be. They teach us things that are real while also helping us hone our imaginations.

I am open minded with all religions, so I found the Theology side of this both interesting and distracting. Because of this, I give the book 4-stars (out of 5). It was definitely worth the read, but aside from skimming through to write down a few books I’ve missed in all my years as a reader, I probably won’t pick it up again.

 

I received this book from Tyndale in exchange for my honest review.