Monday, 29 June 2015

WRAP-UP: Can books really fix everything?

Over the last four weeks, I've read more self-help books than I've ever read before in my life. This is the final installment - and the wrap-up - to my investigation. How do I feel reaching the end of this personal challenge?

It's such a relief for this to finally be over! The books I've read have ranged from the god-awful to the mildly helpful, but have definitely leaned towards the former. 
So what self-help books did I read in this final week? Well, I'm embarrassed to say that I actually only managed to read one of them - namely '7 Secrets To Confidence' by Steve Miller. Surprisingly, this is the best of the self-help books that I've read; Steve's voice is very humorous, making the best of terrible situations and honestly recalling multiple times in his life that have been trying and difficult. Any self-help book that can talk about bullies as "little dicks" is friendly and approachable enough for me to actually try and take some of the advice on board.
Don't get me wrong, it's not a perfect self-help book. Each of the secrets are demonstrated in real-life situations, which definitely makes them feel trustworthy. However, they're recalled by the author rather than testimonials from his customers vouching for the secrets, so at points it definitely feels as though it could be crafted or over-exaggerated. 
As well as this, there are lots of scripts for relaxation exercises that just didn't see to have any affect on me - this could be because I didn't read the scripts out loud, or didn't have a friend read them to me, but they just seemed a bit too cliched to be genuine. They didn't really take away from my enjoyment of the book, just meant that I skipped a few of them later on as I felt I'd already read them before - they were all based off of the same formatting. 
However, I'm definitely feeling more positive about self-help books than I was at the beginning of this month long challenge. None of the ones I've read so far have been life-changing or mind-blowing, but I've been interested in the psychology behind them and I've definitely picked up a few hints and tips that I will attempt to utilize in the future. 
I definitely wouldn't say that self-help books have fixed everything for me. In fact, I'd say that self-help books made me feel worse more than they made me feel better! But because I'm still interested in the genre, I'm going to keep reading them (only posting the reviews on my Goodreads from now on though!) and hopefully I'll find the self-help book for me. In the mean time, I'm going to continue having fun with my friends and going on long relaxing walks - socialising and exercising seem to fix things a lot better than words can. 
I hope you've enjoyed my investigation into self-help books! If there are any you recommend feel welcome to comment them down below and I'll try to get around to reading them. Thank you for following me on this personal journey, even if my viewpoint didn't move as much as I'd been anticipating it would.  

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