5 Favorite Nightstand Books

Although my kindle is great and of course very practical, I am still a sucker for a physical book- the cover, turning an actual page, plus they always make for nice decorations around the house. I have a collection of books sitting on my nightstand, some I’ve read all the way through and some are still in progress.  From business inspiration to travel stories that make you want to take off around the world, below are my top 5 favorites!

1. #GIRLBOSS

Sophia Amoruso is nothing short of a total badass. This New York Times bestseller shares the inspiring story of how she went from hitchhiking to starting one of the fastest-growing retailers in the world.

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Photo: Design the Life You Want to Live

 

2. What I Was Doing While You Were  Breeding

I wish Kristin Newman and I could be besties in real life, or at least vacation together. I mean, we have the same first name so that’s a great start right? In this memoir Kristin shares her inspiring and hilarious jet setting tales from around the globe. Just be prepared to buy a few plane tickets after reading.

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Photo: The Everygirl

 

3. The 4-Hour Workweek

I first listened to this on audiobook during my long commutes to work back in the day. I loved it so much I bought the book years later and am steadily getting through my second read. The 4-Hour Workweek is a huge motivator and great resource to ditching the 9-5, living anywhere and joining the “New Rich”.

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Photo: The Bloguettes

 

4. Eat Pray Love

A classic of course! Live vicariously through one woman’s transformational life journey across Italy, India and Indonesia. I’ve read this book and watched the movie with Julia Roberts during good times and bad times in my life and it never disappoints. 

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5. Bossypants

What better way to end the list then with some much needed laughs with Tina Fey. I have brought this book on my last few plane flights and embarrassed myself plenty with laughing out loud in public.

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What books are currently on your nightstand?

 

Go-For-It Motivation

Time for a little motivation that will light a fire under your ass to go after what you really want in life. I recently began the process of a HUGE life change… leaving the safety and security of a full-time, office job to work on my own and develop my own company. For a long thing this has only been a daydream of mine, but despite the hesitation of those around me I’ve decided this year would be the year I start to make it happen.

It’s easy for us to get influenced by those around us. We feel like we need to conform to a certain lifestyle, certain job, or certain priorities. Some never have the guts to really take a big risk, and I can’t be one of those people who would look back in 15 years and wonder “what if I took that leap?”. Your friends, family, and colleagues can give you all the advice they want, but at the end of the day all that matters is what you feel in your gut is the direction you need to take. This is something I have to constantly remind myself of as I begin and carry through this new phase in my life. I’d like to share with you some quotes I love that keep my head up and my mind focused on what it is I REALLY want 🙂

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The Good, Bad & Totally Awesome

Every year we go through ups and downs in life. Actually forget every year, every week or DAY we go through ups and downs! I find myself wondering, when is everything going to just come together in this magical moment where I feel totally complete and settled? The reality is it never will, because life is a freaking never-ending roller coaster.

Now that doesn’t have to end up being a negative thing! After reflecting over the good and bad parts of 2015 I realized I can change the way I look at the “bad” and turn them into growing experiences. Phrasing it like that doesn’t sound so awful, right? This kind of thinking can turn your bad moments into good in the end, and in the end your good moments will become nothing short of  totally awesome.

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I’d love to share with you 2 specific hard times of mine in 2015 that I turned around into good… because life is just too short to carry around negative energy 🙂

#1- Letting Go of Colorado

I previously shared this experience with you on the blog, but if you need some catching up I was planning on moving to Denver, CO when my lease ended in April 2015. After taking another trip to Colorado in January I was ready to start a new phase of my life full of  gorgeous mountains, learning how to snowboard, and enjoying a young, eclectic city. Right around that same time we were going through some changes at my job. I was presented an amazing opportunity when, with the hiring of additional part-time employees, I began managing a design, marketing and social team to build our company brand. At this point I was already so focused on Denver, picking out options for downtown apartments, totally envisioning myself living the CO life, and I didn’t want to give that up.

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After a seriously honest conversation with my boss, I came home and cried my little eyes out over a bottle of wine (which for me means it’s a big deal, I don’t cry easily!). I had this pit in my stomach and knew deep down I needed to stay, but letting go of that dream and everything I had envisioned for my immediate future was truly challenging. In a way, I felt like I wasn’t accomplishing a goal I had been talking about for months. As I would eventually come to realize, ended up accomplishing a completely different goal instead.

Reflecting on the situation I can 100% say I am happy with my decision. That “bad moment” of 2015 ended up a turning point of my career. In a matter of 9 months I grew more professionally than I ever expected.  I gained confidence in my eye for design and visual aesthetics, learned how to manage a creative team, completely elevated the look of our brand such as product packaging, the website and styled photography.  Overall  I grew into a whole new level in my career. Instead of focusing on the immediate gratification of moving, I invested my time over the past year into something that will carry me forward in so many positive ways in my future. After all,  while the opportunity of moving never really goes away, some career moves only come around once.

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#2- Yep, I’m Still Single

At this point I’ve been single for about a year and a half. For some that may seem like nothing, for others that may seem like forever. For me, it’s like this awkward in between feeling. The “bad” part about this is obvious- not having that companion in life to be with you through those ups and downs… someone to celebrate your highs, comfort you in your lows. Obviously you have your family and friends but it’s not quite the same. Being in a relationship means you have someone with whom to share cooking nightly dinners, cozying up on the couch,  taking vacations, and spending holidays together.

I think one of the worst parts of being single for a while has been having people say things like, “you’re not dating ANYONE?” or “it’s okay, you’ll find someone soon” or “better hurry, all the good ones are getting taken!” or “shouldn’t you start thinking about marriage soon, you’re not that young anymore”. I’m not even joking, the last one totally happens. Usually these comments come from people a generation older than me, I think it’s a different mindset and timetable these days. The one I had to laugh at the most was “you know, your child bearing years are coming up, maybe you should be taking finding a man more seriously”.  WHAT?! I’m 27, give me a little break here. It’s easy to let comments like that get to you and make you feel self conscious, especially when everyone around you, including your ex, is pairing off.

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I prefer to turn this “bad” situation into a GREAT one (cue Beyonce’s Single Ladies right here). Being single this year has allowed me to focus more time and energy on my own dreams without having to adjust them for someone else’s. Not just the actual time spent working on things like this blog and other projects, but the mental time to reflect on myself and what I really want out of life. I’ve also learned through casual dating what I like and don’t like in someone… a very important thing to know when choosing your life partner! I know the time will come when I’ll no longer be a single lady. But in the meantime, I’ll be enjoying this precious alone time to further develop my own talents and values, while keeping an eye out for that 1 special guy who gives me butterflies, believes in me, challenges me to be better, shares my taste for adventure, and keeps me on my toes in a good way.

And for my fellow single girls out there who need a little pick-me-up…  pour yourself a glass of wine, blast this song, and have a little solo dance party. Kind of cheesy?? Yes, for sure. But you can’t deny it helps turn that bad moment into a totally awesome one.

 

Stop and Reflect

It can be so easy to get wrapped up in the day-to-day stress of trying to make it all happen when there’s seemingly not enough hours in the day. I regularly stop and remind myself to be proud of my achievements, appreciate what I have, to get excited about the things to come and to not get caught up in the temporary frustrations that arise. Here is a little inspiration to get you through those times!

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Surprise Endings & Beginnings

As I was just saying, plan as much as you want but life usually has it’s own set of plans in store for you. I was reminded of this truth big time a few weeks ago when I knew in my gut I had to put any moving out west plans on hold. After all was said and done, I decided  to grow and expand my career, right here in ATL. It was a very difficult decision to allow myself to make. I had envisioned myself living in Cali for many, many years and very recently was putting together plans to move to Colorado when my lease ended.

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This all changed after a very heart felt conversation with my boss about my desire to move. Afterwards I came home, poured myself a few glasses of wine and settled into all the thoughts and emotions running through my head. By the end of the night, I knew deep down I needed to be patient and stay put. Although it wasn’t easy for me to accept at first, I would never take back that decision.

Since then, our in office team has doubled in size. This little Graphic Designer became Art Director & Product Design Assistant, and plans for me to join in on international trips are already in the works. Talk about some exciting beginnings and future life adventures! Certain opportunities only present themselves once and I have a feeling I would look back and agree that this was one of them.

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