TayloredReads Monthly Book Review

TayloredReads Monthly Book Review

i am on a ROLL with my monthly reads goal!  did you catch my last two month reviews here and here?  there’s nothing like setting a personal goal, no matter what the type and fulfilling it.  i cannot express how important continued learning is, whether you want to learn more about outer space, zebras or your brain – keep soaking in more and more information!

the world is SO big with SO much information just waiting for us to get our hands on and wrap our lives around.  when it comes to reading, you never know what you’re going to find behind that cover of the book in your hand.  but i am a firm believer that books i each brought into your life for  reason.  whether you end up loving it or ditching it half way through, you WILL learn something from it.  you may learn what you don’t like thus making you learn a little more about yourself, and you may come across one sentence in a book that will change your life.

isn’t that so exciting?! not knowing how a piece of literature, case-study or passionate story will impact your life?  i have come across books that absolutely shifted the way i viewed specific things, looked at people differently and more importantly forced me to reflect and dig deep inside myself so I can become a better person.

so without further adue… your TayloredReads Monthly Book Review – which unintentionally ended up being all books about the brain and happiness!

TayloredReads Monthly Book Review

The Happiness Equation by Neil Pasricha

TayloredReads Monthly Book Review

Score: 10/10

This was one of those books, that the moment it came into my life I knew it was going to be good.  And with this one in particular, it wasn’t even physically in my life yet – I simply heard the author speaking as a guest on a podcast I listen to regularly.  After 10 minutes into the interview, the vibes and positive outlook I got from Pasricha, I immediately got on Amazon and ordered his book he was on there promoting. I had no clue what it was about, but I knew I ‘needed’ it in my life. this was definitely the first time I’ve ever just hopped right on amazon and purchased a book before even looking more into it – but I can say did not regret the hasty decision.

Just like the book You Are a Badass.. a few pages in I was hooked and knew it was going to be a 10/10 and one I’d gift to friends and family.

I tabbed and highlighted so much in this book that I’ll be able to refer back to as either friendly reminders, good insights and just snipped I really ‘felt’.  He really pushes for celebrating life and all it’s present moments which is what I am personally all about.  How making yourself priorities and sticking to what’s most important will change the way your life lays out – like the importance of family over work, which I know is nothing new, but his approach to making it more playful and exciting is always a good reminder.  Being happy is all about how we react to life, not how life plays towards us.

I also appreciated how he broke down different ‘steps’ on how to be happier in all aspects of your life, and tricks to incorporate them into your routine and life – which again is how I live my life and love love LOVE learning new ‘tools’ to add into my toolkit.

So yep, get yourself this book ASAP, whip out a highlighter and tabs because it’s a good one and truly only took me a few evenings to read.

Hardwiring Happiness by Rick Hanson

TayloredReads Monthly Book Review

Score: 8/10

This was a book that jumped out at me at the library.  As I’ve shared before, most of the ways I find my books are by simply walking into the library with no set intention on what type, I just grab one off the shelf that ‘speaks’ to me. Hardwiring Happiness – I love learning about the brain and happiness, so I assumed this would be a great read.


I appreciate Hanson’s approach on the different aspects of our brain, going into how it’s wired for begin on the ‘look out’ all the time and then in turn how we can calm it and allow ourselves to really see the happiness and good in our life when our brains what to do the opposite.  Teaching ourselves to re-hardwire our brain to see the GOOD in everything quicker, so eventually it becomes natural.  He provides different steps, like “The Four Steps of Taking in the Good” by using the acronym HEAL. “Have a positive experience” “Enrich it” “Absorb it” “Link positive and negative material”.  So things like that always get tabbed for me to file into my toolkit and remember throughout my day and life.

Great book – definitely worth a read!!

Mind Hacking by Sir John Hargrave

TayloredReads Monthly Book Review

Score: 4/10

This was another book I was wondering the paths of the Library and it jumped out – again the whole brain and happiness combo is what tied me in.  In the end it was a bit of a bummer because he comes from the background of computer gaming and such he referred most of the book around that sort of arena.  SO if you’re into computers and online gaming you’ll appreciate how he bounces back and forth between how a computer is wired to how our brain is wired then you will like this book. BUT I am not into computers, soooo it wasn’t a very fun read for me.

Essentialism by Greg McKeown

TayloredReads Monthly Book Review

Score: 10/10

SUCH a classic.  This book has been on my ‘wish list/must read’ for a LONG time, so I am happy I finally dove in.  He breaks down the two types of people: the Nonessentialist and the Essentialist.  We want to strive to live an essentialist life, giving our attention to what’s MOST important so we can get the MOST out of life.  The importance of looking at options we have but then training our brains to pick the one that will get us the most bang-for-our-time AND at the same time excel us forward faster than other options.  So when you are approached with a choice in life and you may think that that specific project is better for your time because it will reap the awards FASTER… but in the end it’s not really an investment so over time it will lose its fizzle and then in the end you wasted your precious time when you could’ve chosen the other option that had long term benefits and less overall work.

There’s so many more examples I could give… but instead…


8 Keys to Practicing Mindfulness by Mischke Reeds

TayloredReads Monthly Book Review

Score: 10/10

I’ve now read this book 2 times over the past year because Mindfulness is truly a lifestyle and not a quick-fix to be happy.  Mindfulness is an ability we all already possess, we have the capacity to self-witness, to be aware, to tune in and find out for ourselves what we are feeling, sensing and needing in EVERY SINGLE MOMEMENT and then have the ability to make immediate tweaks and changes to make that moment even more fulfilling.

Reeds provides such beautiful examples of not only what Mindfulness IS but then how to make it a part of your life, effortlessly as you continue to practice it daily.  Like when you have a great experience or talk with a friend – how are you feeling? Are you really soaking in the wonderful moment?  She makes you see how truly wonderful every single moment we have in each second of our day is if you just are MINDFUL of it.  Aware of your surroundings. You hear the birds chirping a bit more, the leaves are greener, your heart is more full.. etc.

At the end of each type of mindfulness she gives a meditation exercise along with a writing exercise so you can not only feel the different ways to be mindful but then when you’re done with the book, you have so many new great tools to put into your toolkit on different ways to meditate, think and absorb each day and moment through writing.

If you want to begin living a life of Mindfulness, 24/7 – get this book, and be ready to live a whole different way of thinking and being.

So there you have it! What I read over the past 4 weeks.  I can never express how important it is to read books that empower you, strengthen your mind and simply help you look at different ways to live your life thus creating a better life.  Because isn’t that what we all want? Promise yourself, if you don’t already, to start to make reading a priority.  Either 30 minutes once a week you sit down with a book or every night before bed.  Regardless, make it a part of your routine and life and I can promise you’ll see positive changes!


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