Best of 2015 - Books


2015 was a big year for me. It was full of surprises and change, and I suspect more is coming my way in 2016!

To wrap up the year, I've been reflecting on everything that was fun, exciting or meaningful about 2015, and I will be sharing it with you over the next few days. 

I wanted to start with books because these three have been definitely life changing, although they have come into my life accidentally --or perhaps serendipitously??

The order in which I read them was also accidental/serendipitous. 

Below are my favourite books of 2015, with my very own Cole's notes review.


1. The Places That Scare You, by Pema Chodron.

Although I owned a copy of this book for over a year, I didn't start to read it until the day after I quit my full-time, stable job and to kick-off the event, I went on a two week beach vacation. Nothing about this book says fun in the sun, but something told me I should bring it with me, just in case. I am so grateful I did. I have no doubt it prepared me for what was coming next, and still does. 

This is the gist of it: Don't be afraid to be afraid, uncomfortable or in pain, it's kinda part of life. Also, nobody thinks those are fun things to feel either. Don't escape it. Feel it all anyway. Be a warrior. There's magic on the other side of all of that.


2. Big Magic, by Elizabeth Gilbert.

I came back from the beach with no job, plenty of ideas and dreams and a lot of overwhelm. Again, by accident, I heard a podcast by Liz Gilbert and it moved me so much, I had to buy the book. I already suspected I needed to do something creative with my life. I had always been a creative person (now I am beginning to think, who isn't?!). Before reading this book, I had already started my blog and had made a commitment to living a creative life. After reading it, I became convinced this was without a doubt what I was meant to do.

The gist of Big Magic: You don't need permission to live a creative life. Don't be afraid to do it either. In fact, you are doing the world a service by honouring creativity. Keep doing it please. 

Whenever I felt discouraged in the past 6 months, I keep hearing Liz Gilbert's nuggets of wisdom over and over in my head and kept going, in spite of doubt or having a case of the blah's (one of my favourites: 'done is better than good') This book has changed my life. Thank you Elizabeth Gilbert!


3. Rising Strong, by Brene Brown.

I just started reading this book and I already know it will change everything. I think it's the perfect ending to the 2015 trilogy.

The gist of it: Our vulnerability is our superpower. Don't be afraid to embrace all of what life brings us: the good, the blah's and the really ugly. It's often the very parts that we want to ignore or forget the most - the difficult, the yucky bits- that make us who we are. And who we are is awesome. 

2015 has been a very powerful year for me. It's been a year of big change and doing scary (but exciting) things and being terrified but doing it anyway. These books were the perfect companions for the journey. 

I can't recommend them to you enough!

But enough about me... what are the best books you've read this year? What do you plan for 2016? I'd love to know! 

Feel free to either post on the comments below and/or share your own list of good things with #F15BestOf2015 on Instagram & Twitter.

Here's to an even more meaningful and inspiring 2016!