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Category: Books

6 Inspirational Books That Changed My Life

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These are my must-read books…  the ones that when I was reading them it was like a light being switched on, the ones that made me think “I must do that now!”, the ones I keep on my bookcase and return to again and again. These books are my life and heart companions, and yet they are also the ones I frequently give away and have to reorder!

1. Games People Play – Eric Berne

I first read this when I was a teenager and the realisation that ordinary interactions could be ‘scripts’ was a revelation. Made sense of many things that had been puzzling me and it has been a constant guiding light over the years, especially when I feel that I am being ‘played’. His other books are great too, but this is the one that really changed my life.


2. Families and How to Survive Them – John Cleese & Robyn Skinner

This was also an early ‘find’ that I have returned to many times. It’s easy to read and amazingly insightful. No family is perfect and this helps you see the bigger picture – and realise that it’s all about patterns of behaviour and that you do have the power to change things, if only how you react! If you like this one, do read the companion volume ‘Life and How to Survive it” too.


3. Happy Children – Rudolf Dreikurs

My parenting bible, which helped inspire me to start Funky Angel back in 2003. ‘Happy Children’ is not just a highly practical and useable guide (which it really is, the best out there by far), it also helps us see how we and our relationships are shaped by family dynamics – and to make changes in the way we parent so we do it better. Highly recommended, not just for parents, but for all grown up children too – and yes, this is one I have lent, given away and repurchased many times 🙂


4. Inner Game of Tennis –  W Timothy Gallwey

This is so much more than an approach to playing tennis: it is a whole philosophy of life, helping you build your confidence and find your inner flow in everything you do. Brilliantly helpful in a work environment but also hugely inspirational for creatives too, especially when you are experiencing a ‘block’!

It’s one of the many books I read when I was training to be an NLP life/business coach and the one that has stayed with me after most of the others were given away.


5. Transform Your Life – Penny Ferguson

Great practical insights and case studies to help you challenge your thinking and ultimately change your life for the better. At age 50 Penny realised that her life was a disaster because of the way she was in herself, and she then read widely (from Louise Hay to Eckhart Tolle) to try and understand why she wasn’t happy and why everything was falling apart and then fix it – which she did very successfully.

This is my favourite of her books as I can open a page and immediately be inspired because it’s distilled wisdom and offers a hugely practical blueprint. However, I can also thoroughly recommend ‘The Living Leader’ and if  you want to take it to a whole other level, especially from a work perspective, seriously consider taking her (honestly) life-changing Personal Leadership Programme – I promise you won’t regret it!


6. Understanding and Healing Emotional Trauma – Daniela Sieff

Subtitled ‘Conversations with pioneering clinicians and researchers’ this is an amazingly insightful, and very easy to read and understand book. Pretty much everyone has a degree of childhood trauma – it’s part of being human – and these conversations with experts in their fields helps you make sense of it and gives you the tools to heal and overcome anything that is holding you back or affecting you deeply.

I attended a lecture that Daniela gave locally, and throughout it I felt I was being reminded of an inner truth I had been aware of, but hadn’t articulated, and then when I read the book (twice, back to back) it was like experiencing a series of revelations about myself, other people, and society in general. Mind blown. A must read for everyone.


I hope you found my list interesting and inspiring, and that if you haven’t read all (or even any) of them, that you will. Please do share any of your ‘must read’ books too in the comments – all light bulb moments happily received 🙂










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