This is by no means an all-inclusive list! These books are simply the ones that appeared at a pivotal point in my life and made such an impact that I either still have a copy (a small miracle, given my many moves and penchant for decluttering) or would purchase another copy if the opportunity arose.
I have included a brief paragraph with each book summarizing what I learned from it and why it was influential.
Man’s Search for Meaning ~Viktor Frankl
If you read no other book on this list, I urge you to read this one. It is the story of a man imprisoned in a German concentration camp as a child and how he lived and learned that, while the soldiers could control his circumstances, only he had control of his mind. I read this in the summer between my Sophomore and Junior years of high school, and it changed my life.
Something More ~ Sarah Ban Breathnach
I read this one after my divorce at about age 25. It was the first book I recall that gave me concrete tools that appealed to me for finding out more about myself. I love the author’s direct, yet romantic style and the emphasis on finding out what makes you happy and then going for it.
Psychic Development for Beginners ~William W. Hewitt
This book is just what its title proclaims it to be: a guide for developing your psychic abilities. I learned the method of meditation I still use from this book, and I learned the power of creative visualization.
The Artist’s Way ~Julia Cameron
If you are stuck in any area of your life, I urge you to read this book and at the very least, begin the practice of Morning Pages. This practice was fundamental to my learning to manage, and eventually cure, my lifelong struggle with depression.
A New Earth ~Eckhart Tolle
This book was my introduction to many new concepts that are now cornerstones of my spiritual practice. There is so much to love about Tolle’s writing style… his personality shines through and illuminates your life.
You Can Heal Your Life ~Louise Hay
My introduction to the power of affirmations. This was a fairly recent discovery for me and quite powerful.
The Four Agreements ~don Miguel Ruiz
Revolutionary. The simple language of the Agreements, and the explanations and examples make the concepts easy to learn. Mastering them is a lifetime’s work.
The Seat of the Soul ~Gary Zukav
I first saw Gary Zukav on Oprah, and I was impressed with his gentle, down to earth manner. The series of essays in this book are thought provoking and written in a deeply relatable way.
The Seeker’s Guide ~Elizabeth Lesser
Truly, a wonderful guide. There is so much information in this book that can be used as a jumping off point for exploring a universe of concepts. I love her discussions of issues that are exclusive to women. This was my first real look into the idea of the Divine Feminine.
The Desire Map ~Danielle LaPorte
An intuitive and groundbreaking way to look at goal setting. Actually, an intuitive and groundbreaking way to look at getting through daily life. How do you want to feel?
Wishcraft: How to Get What You Really Want ~Barbara Sher
My first taste of manifestation principles. This was a library book that I kept out for 6 months.
E-Squared ~Pam Grout
Another book about the power of thought and our ability to create our own reality. 9 Fantastically fun experiments to do to prove the concepts to yourself. If you enjoy this one, be sure to also pick E-Cubed.
Quantum Wellness ~Kathy Freston
Another one to thank Oprah for: this book was my first foray into mindful eating. While I am in no way a great or mindful eater, yet, this book convinced me there was reason to be. The author takes the time to explain how thoughts, emotions, and the circumstances of everyone who comes into contact with our food affects its nutritional value, and how we absorb those energetic vibrations when we eat it.