How 8 Books Changed My Life

I recently wrote a piece for Divorce Magazine titled: 8 Books That Helped Me Create My Perfect Life after Divorce – And Not One of Them Is About Divorce! Here’s a little background about why I wrote the piece — and how I hope it can help you.

First, I wrote it because I had a deadline and needed to come up for an idea for an article! #writerslife #procrastination

Second, I was cleaning out bookcases at my apartment (seems we all have a little more time for home organizing project these days, doesn’t it)? I must admit – even though I love reading and have worked as both a librarian and a writer my entire working life – I actually do not like to have a lot of books around. Clutter stresses me out. And, probably because of my background, my philosophy is: “That’s what the library is for – to keep all the books!”

But I realized there was a stack of books I was setting aside and didn’t feel I could get rid of.  What was holding me back? I knew they’d been around for a number of years, but why? Opening each one to page through and try to recall, I discovered lots of underlining and notes to myself. Which reminded me how much these eight titles had been helpful to me as I was figuring out my life after divorce. I wanted to “do” divorce in a way that would be beneficial to myself and my family. And I wanted to figure out how to coparent in a way that felt best for our three children. My ex and I had decided we would attempt bird nesting (keeping the kids in the family home while he and I did the moving in and out) – which is a somewhat untraditional approach. There wasn’t much written on the topic of nesting, or even on how to divorce differently than tradition seemed to dictate (i.e., hate each other forever, never interact, stress the kids out). I was devoting a lot of energy and brain space to figuring this all out.

These were all books that seemed to enter my life serendipitously. And looking at them again, I realized how essential they had been in getting me to, well … to my very happy Now.

I certainly didn’t seek them out with the goal of helping me divorce and/or coparent better. Not a one of them is even about divorce or nesting or coparenting! They are each, in different ways, about bringing creativity into your life, about the importance of making space in your life to figure out your passions and priorities, about connecting with others in a more genuine and fulfilling way. I had not considered myself a “self-help” book reader per se… but I guess can be!

I hope you’ll enjoy the article. Even more, I hope that at least one – or maybe even two or three – of these titles will help bring more creativity into your life, more time for pursuing your passions, and stronger and better connections with other. That they will give you whatever you need to help you move into next stage of your life or make the most of your life where it is now.

You are creating your life and your world in every moment.” 

 Janet Bray Attwood and Chris Attwood in The Passion Test: The Effortless Path to Discovering Your Life’s Purpose

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1617 946 Family Nesting • Beth Behrendt, Author
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