“Read This for Inspiration” can inspire you to make a change. This book isn’t a checklist. It’s not another thing to do. It’s another way to think.
You may be wandering the aisles of a bookstore and come upon this book just like I did. The cover caught my eye because it was so unlike the others. Plain and simple. At least on the outside.
But the inside is a different story. Actually, many different stories to inspire you – from “Progress is a Horseshoe” to “A Tom Hanks Kind of Day”.
“Read This for Inspiration” sold me with two pages alone. I opened the book to see a page about grief and the Portuguese word “saudade” (pronounced “sow-dahd”) which is a melancholic longing for a time that will never return.
“In some ways, the only part of grief that is beautiful is its presence…that we have something to miss in the first place.”
On the next page, there is advice about not wasting your time with negative people, with the poet Maya Angelou’s famous words, “When people show you who they are, believe them.”
“Instead of giving your time to people who don’t treat you the right way, take it back. Keep it for yourself or give it to those who build and lift you up.”
My favorite story in “Read This for Inspiration” is about “mirando.” The author, Ashly Perez, is visiting her grandfather (abuelo) and grandmother (abuela). She spends most of the afternoon with her abuelo in the living room, looking through photo albums and learning about family history.
When Perez takes a break, she finds her abuela has been sitting outside, on the porch, for hours. Perez sits beside her abuela, and expects to be asked questions, but there is only silence and no eye contact.
After scrolling through her phone and quickly running out of things to do, Perez asks her abuela, “What are you doing?” Her abuela smiles at her and says, “Mirando” (Looking). When Perez turns back to take in the view, she realizes all that she has missed: birds, trees, a bubbling fountain, a noisy lawn mower.
“Sometimes, when I’m overwhelmed, I think back to that afternoon…where my job is not to do, but rather to look. Close your eyes and join us on the porch.”
Beyond the words, this book requires you to look at things in a different way through illustrations, different fonts, and lots of color on its pages.
Some pages are designed so that you must turn the book to read the text. Just by making you read differently, you’re already making changes.
“Read This for Inspiration” includes an appendix that groups the stories under categories, such as creativity, science, motivation. So, depending on what you need, you can be inspired again.
After finishing this book, I put “mirando” into practice. While waiting for a ferry, I didn’t reach for my phone or even a book to read. Previously, I would have thought I wasn’t doing anything. But I was. I was looking.
Making a small change can make a big difference in your life. Pick up this book and make your change happen.
See more Books to Read:
The Reader on the 6.27
Once Upon a Tome
No Time to Spare
Vivian Maier Developed
Jane Austen: A Life
Books overlooked. Bakes for home bakers. Places unexpected. Find your new favorite thing.