Easter: A time for Spring Reading?
Use your time off for some personal development with these chart-topping books
Feeling grouchy? Vitamin D levels reaching dangerous lows? With the Christmas a distant memory and the cold, bleak winter months stretching their way into 2016, we all need a break and the Easter holidays are a welcome chance to recharge those batteries with a good book.
However instead of losing yourself between the pages of a dramatic fiction set in some impossibly beautiful Caribbean island, how about using the time to do some head-clearing spring cleaning? We all said ‘New Year, New Me’…..
Okay, hear me out. ‘The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying’ by Marie Kondo has topped the New York Times best-seller list and has sold over two million copies in over thirty countries. An ‘organizing consultant’, Kondo is employed on a domestic and commercial basis to help people make sense of their clutter and has had so much success doing so, that her waiting list stretches on indefinitely.
Translated from the original Japanese, this book promises to turn your home from a well-meaning but cluttered home to an eternally tidy and joyful one with the ‘KonMarie method’. Now, we all know how to tidy but more often than not a tidying ‘blitz’ is ruined several weeks later when we’re late for the bus and can’t find our keys. Ms Kondo claims that if we tidy in one mammoth session, over a period no longer than six months, we can maintain show-home levels of tidiness.
It is proposed that we go through our items by category, for example clothes or books, and ask ourselves if each object ‘sparks joy’, and if not we should thank the item for its use and then dispose of it. If the thought of graciously thanking your novelty ‘New Years Eve 2014’ glasses before binning them seems a bit New-Age, just take a step back. Imagine a bedroom filled with items that make you happy, remind you of good times or excite you rather than looking through your wardrobe with sorrow at old clothes that are no longer in trend (if you are looking for a sign to throw out that poncho, this is it).
‘The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying’ is a joyful and motivating read, simple in its ideas and witty in parts; it is the perfect book for a productive Easter break.
Now your home is spotless (right?), let’s turn to your mind… well, they do say a clean room is a clean mind! Unless you have been living under a rock, you will have heard the self-help buzzword ‘mindfulness’ but what you may not have heard, is that comedian Ruby Wax now has a degree in the subject. ‘ A Mindfulness Guide For The Frazzled’ is for the group of people too suspicious for traditional self-help, but who are struggling under the pressures of modern life, or as Wax puts it “frazzledom”.
Mindfulness, in essence, is the practice of ‘being in the moment’ and as anxious thoughts encroach upon peaceful moments, using the senses to ‘anchor’ yourself back in the current moment. Wax explains the neuroscience behind this practice in an accessible and of course, witty manner with the frank tone of a former cynic and of someone with the experience of having gone through it all too.
Make this Easter one of self-improvement, spring cleaning for both home and mind!