I’m not a big fan of self-help books and magazines. Except of course for my ‘Quest for Positivity’ reading frenzy, and to be fair most of the reading I did was related to the business/professional end of the spectrum, i.e. motivating and managing people, I have read next to absolutely zero self-help books. I suppose that is at least partially a reflection of the cynic in me. Whatever.
But and but and another big but, the Best Piece of Advice I Ever Got came from a self-help book entitled ‘Finding Your Own North Star: Claiming the Life You Were Meant to Live’ by Martha Beck. Ms. Beck is some big, self-help, life-coach guru person and I have absolutely no idea how I came across this book but I did. I think that I was attracted to the pretty blue cover with the star on it.
Of course the book is all about finding your well, North Star and well, leading the life you were meant to live. But the best piece of advice I ever got came out of chapter 7 of this book which is called Soul Shrapnel: Repairing Your Emotional Compass. The title of the chapter probably gives a hint and in it Ms. Beck makes it perfectly clear that we’re never going to realize our potential until we heal the emotional gun-shot wounds we’ve suffered in life. She doesn’t get all touchy-feely and mushy, she just states it plainly and simply.
So thank you Martha Beck for the best piece of advice I have ever received, and probably will ever receive in my entire life. I never did finish the book, maybe someday when I’m done with therapy who knows. But I do know this, all the self-help books, all the life-coaching sessions, all the positive little mantras, all that stuff would have been a complete waste of time without the therapy. So for all of you consumers of life-coaching services and readers of self-help books do yourself a favor, if you haven’t already - spend your hard-earned money on a good therapist and then use what’s left over for the life-coach if you still need her/him.
For the record Ms. Beck is a pretty funny gal and a good writer so if y’all like that in your self-help books perhaps you should look her up. Oh and Martha when you read this, don’t bother sending me a check for the free plug I just gave you, I owed you one.