People have been writing books for centuries, so we can never entirely get rid of it even if technology has taken over almost everything nowadays. And as you continue to read this, there are thousands of people who are writing one now. So you can expect books to be written and exist for another long time to come. But setting aside the parts where we talk about the history of books, the question here is, “when was the last time you read one?”
If you are going, to be honest, I bet you would say that it has been a while since you last finished or started reading a book. That is okay; you don’t need to feel ashamed about it. We know that reading is a priceless activity, and not all of us are capable of spending a lot of our time sitting in the corner of our room and read.
Unfortunately, we know that the habit of reading books has been on a decline. We know that most of us do not have time to read due to our busy schedules. Unfortunately, not all of us understand that reading is a workout for the brain. It is just as important as physical exercise. So allow this article to enumerate some of the benefits of reading.
Provides Knowledge – Knowledge is the most obvious and significant thing about reading since the list of things we want to know to grow more every day. It helps us transmit information and helps us develop our intellect faster. So every time we read, it fills our mind with new bits of useful information in our everyday lives. The knowledge we get from reading enables us to better equip ourselves with proper decision-making and analytical thinking useful to tackle life challenges, from finishing up a project to navigating into a difficult relationship.
Strengthens Analytical And Critical Skills – One great thing about reading is its contribution to our analytical and critical skills. Reading can make us think through something by analyzing all the gathered information that we try to put together. That explains why sometimes we can immediately tell the end of the story even if we are still halfway through. The enhanced abilities come in handy in real life as it serves as a training ground for our mental alertness to solve problems.
Helps With Career Advancement – The more we read, the more articulate we become. The newly discovered words will eventually make their way to our daily vocabulary, which can somehow improve confidence. This particular development provides us with additional self-enhanced communication skills that can advance our career levels. And as we become well-read and well-spoken individuals that know a wide variety of topics, it makes us even closer to our career success.
Enhances Writing Skills – In addition to vocabulary expansions, exposure to well-written books contributes a lot to our own writing skills. The more we read other people’s writing, the more we get to understand different perspectives. Reading allows us to improve our expertise as we reflect on some of the easiest complicated writing styles. Aside from that, reading enables us to study grammar in context and helps us get inspired with new creative ideas.
Improves Memory – Reading books provide the opportunity for brain growth. It stimulates the brain and supports its function to its full potential. And when it reaches that potential, it enables a better brain memory boost. That explains why when we often read, we become more familiar with the assortment of words, characters, compositions, background, images, subplots, and various arcs of the content that we read. Reading creates a new pathway for the brain that helps prevents brain diseases such as dementia and Alzheimer’s.
Reduces Stress And Anxiety – With all the stressful life circumstances that we experienced almost every day, there is not much relaxation nowadays. Things are so overwhelming that we somehow can’t find the right reason to stay happy. But with reading, there is a safe, healthy, and productive coping strategy that helps replace negative thoughts and feelings. It secures a safe place for the mind to rest. Reading is proven to be effective at preventing mental exhaustion as it works faster and better than other relaxation methods.
Boost Motivation And Inspiration – Reading some inspiring and motivational books can contribute to the betterment of our mental and emotional growth and development. It provides us an endless amount of different perspectives that we can apply in life. It allows us to have an initial stepping stone to have the best ideas for success. Though we might struggle in finding answers to our problems, reading gives us an edge to understand the things we need to do. It offers us stories that inspire us to work hard and give our best.
In our generation where learning is technologically advanced, you might wonder, “what is the point of reading?” There are video tutorials that can guide you on doing stuff, there are short clips that can narrate a whole story, and there’s even a whole series of music videos that teaches kids’ ABCs. Learning is just at the tip of our hands, so again, why would anyone spend time reading a book?
In today’s fast-paced world, reading is considered a lame habit as most of us perceived it to be a boring, unentertaining, and time-consuming activity. Perhaps that perception is rooted in our growing dependence on social media. Sadly, it seems like technology made it impossible for books to recover from whatever damage that innovation has brought. But of course, it would be unfair to blame it all on the digital world as some other people intend to use the internet for educational purposes. It still offers many reading materials in the form of an e-book which provides the same concept as reading a book.
But to answer the question as to why don’t people read books anymore, there are a couple of reasons for that. This article will discuss a few of the common factors that affect people’s interest in reading.
Reason #1: People Don’t Have time
Truth be told, even if people would love to spend a quiet time reading a book, it sometimes becomes impossible. Everybody’s busy with their daily schedules from home, school, and work, and social life. Thus, reading a book can be looked at as a habit that would take so much time to do. Admittedly, people can’t just spend a couple of minutes reading because they will eventually have to finish an entire book. That particular goal often brings a negative feeling that discourages reading. As a result, people would say that they do not have time.
Reason #2: The Internet Is More Convenient
Yes, reading can be very beneficial in terms of stress reduction. It helps stimulates the brain through an enhanced imagination and creativity. Unfortunately, a lot of people refer to books as outdated stuff. That is why they find social media and other internet-related stuff more convenient and entertaining. So instead of reading a book, many people would prefer to spend time posting pictures, sharing video clips, liking quotes, and just basically doing nothing but scroll their news feeds. Truthfully, the internet offers many things and sources thatch basically make a book look less interesting.
Reason #3: Books Are Expensive
Perhaps some individuals are still more than willing to purchase the bestselling books at the bookstore, especially when written by their best-selling author. These people are simply those who find reading a habit that they value and continue to practice. However, it becomes an excuse not to read for those who can’t afford to buy a book. Understandably, their excuse can be valid since books can be quite expensive at times. And to think that people will only read it once, they might not consider it a good investment of their money.
Reason #4: Visual Representation Is More Engaging
Books can provide a better source of creativity and imagination. It helps the mind to think about beautiful things around. However, there is some stuff in the book that is more engaging when visually viewed. That explains why people prefer watching films or movies instead of re-creating scenarios in their heads. Movies adapted from books pretty much make people not want to read anymore. That is because people would never have to go through some filler parts of the story aside from convenience when they watched the film’s version.
Reason #5: No Idea What To Read
Some people do not read books just because they do not want to. Some of them honestly like to read books but are having a hard time what books to read. Admittedly, finding the best book topics can be exhausting at some point. If the individuals do not know what type of books they prefer, it may take a while before they can finally decide. And sometimes, when that exhaustion kicks in, the enthusiasm for reading gradually fades. Yes, people can try reading something. But if that book does not impact, people will soon lose interest in reading in general.
Reason #6: Reading Is Not Their Thing
Another lame reason people often use to validate their excuse for not reading is telling everyone that reading is not their “thing.” Some individuals would rather stick to their ideology that reading is not part of their everyday lives. Some of them excuse themselves by telling others that they are not used to the habit. And some don’t entirely care to read books at all because they find it unrewarding.
As a writer, you’re certainly good with words and explaining your thoughts and feelings. Thanks to years of experience, you may even be capable of writing up to 4,000-10,000 words in a day.
However, dealing with grief, anxiety, and other mentally-draining emotions may stop you from sharing your innermost feelings. Facing immense pressure to publish your book within a set deadline can take a toll on your mental health.
If your mental problems are starting to disrupt your work and other daily tasks, then it’s time you seek help. Seeking medical help can mean seeing a therapist or psychologist, taking prescription medication, and even joining meditative groups.
But while therapy can certainly nudge you in the right direction, you’d also need some external help. To help you stay on track with your progress, you’ll need support from the people you love. You can also join support groups. Through this way, you can enjoy your journey towards mental clarity with like-minded people.
But if you’re looking for ways to boost yourself without much help from others, you can focus on meditating. You can also engage in physical activities like running and enjoyable hobbies like cooking. And while you’re inside your bubble, why not read a psychology book? After all, sitting down and reading a book can be the perfect time for reflection and self-improvement.
By reading more about your condition, you can improve how to control the symptoms and react to the triggers. Besides, you may even realize hope from success stories of people who’ve also experienced something similar to your situation. Additionally, you can also gain some inspiration on how you can continue writing your book. Most importantly, reading can also help improve your writing skills.
But, there are countless books around the world. Choosing a book to help you maximize your therapy results can thus be a challenging feat. Luckily, you’ll find the best of the best in here. Below, you’ll find a list of the psychology books you may read about to boost your progress from therapy.
What are the best psychology books to read?
Psychology covers lots of topics, including social, cognitive, and behavioral psychology. The best books to read about them are:
The Power of Habit – Charles Duhigg
50 Great Myths of Popular Psychology: Shattering Widespread Misconceptions About Human Behavior – Scott Lilienfeld, Steven Jay Lynn, John Ruscio, and Barry Beyerstein
Stumbling on Happiness – Daniel Gilbert
Phantoms in the Brain: Probing the Mysteries of the Human Mind – V.S. Ramachandran and Sandra Blakeslee
Influence: Science and Practice – Robert Cialdini
Blink – The Power of Thinking Without Thinking – Malcolm Gladwell
Man’s Search for Meaning – Viktor Frankl
Thinking, Fast and Slow – Daniel Kahneman
What are some of the best life-changing books?
The best life-changing books to read are:
The Happiness Hypothesis – Jonathan Heidt
Rich Dad, Poor Dad – Robert Kiyosaki
Stumbling on Happiness – Daniel Gilbert
Civilization and Its Discontents – Sigmund Freud
The Miracle Morning – Hal Elrod
Thinking, Fast and Slow – Daniel Kahneman
Sapiens – Yuval Noah Harari
Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion – Robert Cialdini
The Power of Now – Eckhart Tolle
Outliers: The Story of Success – Malcolm Gladwell
Mindset – Carol Dweck
How to Win Friends and Influence People – Dale Carnegie
What books should I read in 2020?
The best books to read in 2020 are:
A Synthesizing Mind – Howard Gardner
Hidden Valley Road: Inside the Mind of an American Family – Robert Kolker
The Psychology of Money – Morgan Housel
Perspectives on Cognitive Neuropsychology – G. Denes, C. Semenza, P. Bisiacchi
Yes to Life: In Spite of Everything – Viktor Frankl
Critical Thinking – Ian Tuhovsky, Sky Rodio Nuttall
How You Say It – Katherine Kinzler
The Biggest Bluff – Maria Konnikova
Curiosity and Information Seeking in Animal and Human Behavior – Wojciech Pisula
What is the best psychology book for beginners?
The best psychology books for beginners are the following:
The Willpower by Kelly McGonigal
Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me) by Carol Tarvis and Elliot Aronson
On Becoming a Person by Carl R. Rogers
The Emotional Brain by Joseph E. Le Doux
Why you should read psychology books?
Reading psychology books allows us to make better and correct decisions. It influences our minds as we move forward. It also affects the way we take control of our habits. Since it affects our minds, the execution of our decisions through habits also becomes affected. Reading psychology books inspire us. It motivates us to stay focused on the goal. Ultimately, it makes us become more productive individuals.
All of the books listed above can surely help you maximize your therapy outcomes. So, make sure to pick even one which suits your situation and budget, and you’re good to go.
Are you having a hard time choosing one? Just pick a title that speaks to your heart. If you want to be more methodical, you can always search and read book reviews online.
There is often an urge to buy numerous books. Although you can do as you please, much better if you can finish all of the books you’re getting. Getting a book is one thing, but finishing it and living its lessons is another. So, be wise in choosing which of the books to purchase.
As said before, there are many books in the world. Although we support fellow authors, we also can’t deny how some books aren’t as factual and unbiased as they should be. Some authors may even mean well. But it is necessary to acknowledge that different factors may impact the author while writing the book. With that, it might influence them to publish some problematic views.
So, if you’re planning on buying or reading something other than what’s on our list, make sure it has good reviews and fact-based content. Recent books may also be the better choice because psychology is a lively field, with numerous breakthroughs every now and then. You can also ask your therapist to suggest some psychology books for personal research.
Besides sharing commendable psychology books, your therapist can also directly help you achieve your book-writing goals. You can ask your psychologist to share some tips on how to become a better author. You’d be surprised at what they may have in store for you. They may even guide you to write something admirable and appealing to your target audience. After all, they’re experts in seeing and reading patterns in people’s thoughts and feelings.
With the right book, proper support, and commitment to betterment, you’ll surely get back to writing in no time. What once was difficult to express will become easier for you to write down.
And by the time you improve, we hope you’ve learned the lesson of how reading can also help you with writing. Who knows? Maybe your book will even be an entry to other lists like this article. So, what are you waiting for? Pick up your book, and start reading for the better.
People have this writer stereotype: introverted, addicted to caffeine and alcohol, or simply insane. This image of a struggling and frustrated writer sometimes limits what we could be. Like everyone else, we should take care of our mental well-being. The stress that comes with being a writer is indeed real. Even so, having good mental health and healthy coping mechanisms can make your life and works better.
Reading books and writing itself can be therapeutic. Numerous studies have supported the physical and emotional benefits of reading and writing. These include lowered blood pressure as well as reduced anxiety and stress levels. Our work as writers can be taxing and tedious at times. Bombarded by deadlines, drafts, and lack of inspiration can deeply affect and demotivate us. With this, how can you bring back the joy in writing and possibly improve your work?
Therapy is available to help us deal with all of these feelings and problems. For some, however, therapy can be a daunting endeavor. Sitting at a therapist’s office and opening up maybe a terrifying situation. In this case, traditional therapy may not be the best option for you.
Despite this, other therapy methods are available for people who find traditional therapy ineffective or uncomfortable. Text therapy which involves messaging your therapist instead, is a good alternative. In this type of treatment, you will communicate to your therapist through chat or other messaging platforms. It may or may not involve call or virtual sessions, depending on your service plan. Like other methods, text therapy may be beneficial for people who prefer texting instead of real-time interaction.
Text therapy is especially helpful for people who express themselves better through writing rather than speaking. However, there are also some downsides to this. Delay in responses from your therapist and misunderstanding due to lack of verbal and non-verbal cues are possible. Meanwhile, you may opt to do an initial consultation to determine if this therapy mode is good for you.
Read on to learn about the frequently asked questions about text therapy.
Is It OK To Text Your Therapist?
It depends on your arrangement with your therapist. It’s important to set ground rules and boundaries first with your therapist. Remember, this kind of texting should not replace treatment or therapy. Hence, it’s just an accessory to it. Most therapists allow texting, especially during emergencies.
Is Talkspace Real Therapy?
Yes, Talkspace is an online text therapy platform with licensed therapists. Text therapy is a good option for people who do not have time for traditional treatment. Talkspace covers a broad range of mental health services. It offers unlimited therapy through subscriptions allowing you to text your therapist 24/7. However, although you can send messages to your therapist 24/7, they may not give immediate responses depending on time differences and working hours.
How Effective Is Talk Therapy?
A study showed that early talk therapy treatments could reduce long-term risks for severe mental health conditions. Talk therapy, also known as psychotherapy, allows clients to discuss and voice their health professionals’ issues.
This form of treatment believes that mental disorders are mostly based on reactions to the environment. It treats such conditions through discussion, behavioral changes, and mindset changes. However, its effectiveness relies on the client’s willingness and honesty throughout the process, for the patient-therapist dynamic can affect the therapy’s success.
Does Online Therapy Work?
In general, yes. Research shows that online treatment is as effective as face-to-face therapy for depression. Online therapy offers a lot of benefits in terms of convenience, accessibility, and comfort.
Online therapy is ideal for:
People who prefer having therapy at home;
Those who want more time to process their responses;
People who express themselves better through writing;
Those who wish to notes of their therapy sessions;
People who feel pressured or judged during face-to-face sessions;
A greater sense of comfort and safety.
Why Is Online Therapy Bad?
Despite the advantages of online therapy, it has some limitations. In recent years, the information privacy of these sessions has been questioned. Make sure to use a site that has encryption. It is a must to protect your privacy. Clients must ensure a therapist’s licensing. This is to guarantee their qualification for mental health services.
Critical limitations of online therapy are the following:
You cannot receive a prescription. You will need to visit a medical doctor for one.
The tone of voice is hard to replace, and this can cue therapists on emotions.
Nonverbal cues are lost.
Can Therapy Be Harmful?
Therapy can be potentially harmful. For example, a client with past trauma will need to revisit these experiences to help the therapist understand their current needs. Therapy may make the client feel re-traumatized by the experience. Meanwhile, therapists with a narrow treatment approach can also be harmful or ineffective as some people respond better to medication than talk therapies and vice versa. Continuously forcing one treatment, despite being ineffective on the client, will be harmful.
What Should I Not Tell My Therapist?
You can tell your therapist anything. However, do this at your own pace. You don’t need to share everything during the first session. Take your time until you feel comfortable sharing difficult experiences. Rest assured, therapists are required to keep your sessions confidential except if they have reasonable cause to suspect that a client is dangerous to themselves or someone. They may need to have a third party involved in this case.
Is It OK To Hug My Therapist?
It depends on the therapist. Some will be perfectly OK with the idea, and some won’t.
Make sure to set boundaries and discuss this with your therapist. Therapists, in principle, are not allowed to initiate hugs due to ethical guidelines, as these can be easily misinterpreted. Hugs and other forms of touch may lead to softening and breaking boundaries between the client and therapist, which can be dangerous for either of them.
What Are The Signs Of A Bad Therapist?
Here are some signs of a lousy therapist to watch out for:
Crossing Boundaries: if they make you uncomfortable, touch you inappropriately, make sexual advances, or ask to meet you outside therapy sessions.
Misaligned Or Poor Training: if they lack sufficient or specific training to address your issues and attempt to treat your problems
Dismissive: if they seem disinterested, do not provide actionable guidance, always reschedule, ignore what you tell them, and dismissive of your issues.
Controlling: if they try to control your behavior or enlist you to support their personal or business interests.
How Do You Know Therapy Is Working?
Your therapy is working if you start to feel better. You may observe a shift in mindset, better relationships with others, and altered diagnoses. Remember that progress looks different for everyone in terms of time and goals.
Therapy is a dynamic process. Goals can change over time. And the process is not linear. Sometimes, feeling worse can also be a sign of progress. Therapy requires clients to deal with issues – these changes can be challenging. Feel free to discuss with your therapist how progress can look like for you. They can define your goals and measures of success.
Is It Normal To Hate Your Therapist?
You may not always like your therapist. Anxiety and stress in the therapy process are expected, and you will not always agree with your therapist. Hating your therapist can be due to several factors such as the therapy process itself, the stress either you or the therapist is experiencing, or something else. Make sure to recognize the difference between short-term stress due to disagreements or working on specific issues and a long-term problem. Long-term issues may be due to a bad therapist. Or simply because you don’t get along with them.
Do Therapists Give Up On Clients?
In general, therapists do not “give up” on clients. However, the following are cases where a therapist will stop seeing a client when:
The client cannot pay for their services;
The therapist determines that the client’s issues are outside their training and license;
The therapist finds the client particularly difficult to work with;
There is no improvement on the client;
And when the therapist determines that the client is well enough to be on their own.
Do Therapists Cry In Therapy?
Therapists crying in therapy is not a rare occurrence. A study reported that over 70% of therapists have reported having cried in therapy sessions. Therapists described themselves, tearing up rather than sobbing. The study covered beginners to experienced and noted that older and more experienced therapists were more likely to cry.
This occurrence can be dependent on the dynamics of the client and the therapist. Some therapists feel comfortable doing so and feel it positively impacts the relationship through sincere empathy. However, some clients can find therapists crying off-putting or upsetting.
Do Therapists Fall In Love With Clients?
From an ethical and professional perspective, therapists don’t fall in love with clients. Therapy is intrinsically an unbalanced relationship where the therapist focuses solely on the client. Their responses may be incredibly supportive and loving, but it’s from a therapist’s standpoint rather than a friend or relational partner. A brief attraction or infatuation may be possible, but therapists should not let it go further from that.
Can Therapists Tell When You Are Lying?
Yes, but it’s OK. It’s natural for people to present a better version of themselves. We also tend to see things from our perspective and remember them a bit differently each time. Therapists understand this and will wait until you’re ready to share honestly.
There are many instances where we neglect our mental health as writers. Deadlines and other demands can carry us away and allow us to forget both our physical and psychological health. Regardless, we are still humans. Rest from work and other possible stressors in our life is important. Good results won’t come if we continue to burn ourselves out.
Many writers find comfort in words. Words are part of who we are – our work and most likely passion. Writing may also be the path on which we can heal ourselves. The therapeutic power of writing and reading are supported in numerous studies over the years. There are ways and methods on how to use writing to express and explore ourselves in therapy. It includes text therapy as an option.
Text therapy services offer a messaging platform that connects us with a therapist we can talk to asynchronously. You are free to message your therapist any time, but there can be a delay in the response. But rest assured that the therapist will get back to you with a thoughtful response to your problems.
Text therapy is for you if interacting with your therapist is a great hindrance in expressing yourself. This therapy can help reduce the anxieties of talking, which then allows for more comfort. Compared to traditional therapy, text therapy is usually more affordable and convenient.
If you find yourself managing your stress and anxieties better, it’s an indicator that text therapy is effective. Although progress is measured differently from person to person, reaching goals set during therapy sessions is a good gauge. Of course, text therapy may not be for everyone. Feeling re-traumatized, harassed, or uncomfortable is a sign that you either have to change your therapist or treatment mode.
There are currently over 130 million books worldwide. This large number may be overwhelming, especially if you’re thinking about the focus of your first book. You may think there isn’t any topic left to write about anymore—but there’s always something sparking someone’s curiosity. If you’re still stuck on what to write about, you can consider mental health and everything about self-improvement.
The Popularity Of Self-Help Books And Other Mental Health Books
Mental health has become one of the world’s most significant discussions. With the political climate nowadays, people have become increasingly aware of mental health issues. As a result, many have started integrating mental health habits into their everyday lives.
This growing awareness has led to the rise of the self-improvement industry. Personal coaches, motivational speakers, holistic institutes, and self-help books are part of this industry. Simply put, these products and services aim to help people better themselves, not just mentally but also holistically.
At the current rate of the self-improvement industry’s growth, experts predict it to increase by 4.8% each year. Coaching services and self-help products are the major contributors to this growth. With almost a billion dollars in sales, researchers predict an annual increase of 8% for self-help and other mental books.
Mental Health As A Book Topic
With the projected statistics, you may become inclined to write anything about mental health. Before you do so, you have to look at the books already present in the market.
One way to incorporate mental health into your book is by exploring the idea of contentment. Most self-help books claim to have tips on how to improve the quality of life. These books provide in-depth discussions about overall satisfaction and the factors affecting this state.
There are also more specific self-help books. Some may focus on helping readers improve the financial aspect of their lives. Other books help readers find happiness. Getting over a breakup and healing a broken heart is also one of the industry’s leading topics. Readers benefit much from these books because they often have step-by-step processes on how to improve their situations.
Another genre of mental health books involves specific mental disorders. Some books tread lightly on the symptoms of depression and anxiety to help spread awareness. Often, these books help their reader understand themselves and their illnesses better. The more readers are aware, the easier they can gain control of their mental health.
Other books have the complete package, from the causes of mental health disorders to possible treatment plans. These books usually promote changes in lifestyle and way of thinking as complementary treatments to mental conditions. With the tips of these books, readers can achieve overall and holistic self-improvement.
Licensed psychologists and renowned lifestyle coaches write some of these mental health books. Their level of expertise makes their books effective, and thus, marketable. So, if you’re planning on writing about mental health, make sure you have enough credibility.
Benefits Of Mental Health Books
The variety of mental health books in the market provide readers with infinite options for references. If you can think about a mental health topic, maybe a couple of books are filed under it. And the reason why people keep on buying these books lies in how it benefits the readers.
Mental health books bring awareness to different conditions. Some writers discuss mental illnesses such as anxiety, depression, eating disorders, stress disorders, and personality disorders. By examining these conditions, writers can raise awareness and help avoid the stigma towards mental health patients.
Books discussing these illnesses inform readers of symptoms, causes, diagnosis, and treatments. These books also contain ways to deal with loved ones with these disorders. If you plan on writing about mental illnesses, make sure to consult experts. You can also gather firsthand information from survivors willing to share their own stories for accuracy.
Mental health books can also provide readers with complementary treatments. Through tips and suggested lifestyle changes, books can help readers throughout their self-improvement journey. Studies have also found a positive impact of self-help books focusing on specific problems.
Since some psychologists and therapists also write books, they may suggest their books as a complementary workbook. Patients will then follow these books as they progress with their prescribed medication and therapy.
Self-help books not only help readers with self-improvement. These books can also teach readers how to accept their lives as they deal with everyday tasks and problems. Self-help books are also about breaking the stigma of failure and teaching compassion and consideration to oneself.
How To Write Mental Health Books
You want your book to sell, and readers are highly inclined to buy and read books from trusted sources. So, before writing about mental health in your book, make sure you are knowledgeable enough.
Research by reading books and talking to people with expertise or experience in a specific mental health disorder. You can even interview mentally healthy people to share their insights and life hacks. Just make sure you inform them of your intentions even before interviewing them.
Another way to write about mental health is by talking about yourself. If you aren’t a licensed mental health professional, you can instead write about your own experiences and journey to self-improvement. This tactic can help you grow your following, making people see you as an authority-figure in mental health.
With the increasing mental health awareness nowadays, self-help and self-improvement books have become more popular. And you can use this trend to help you start on your book. As long as your readers trust your credibility, you will indeed have a fruitful writing career.
Becoming a writer and seeing my book on the shelves of a bookstore has been my lifelong dream. I went through the whole shebang to achieve it. When I went to college, I majored in both creative writing and marketing. I thought it would help me promote my books later. When I needed to get a part-time job, I applied to a local publishing company and got a paid internship. Granted, I only did get coffee and writing supplies for the writers and editors for two months straight, but the experience drove me to pursue my goals.
Unfortunately, life happened post-graduation. I tried to get a full-time writing job at different publications, but they were only looking for seasoned writers. Some were willing to give me a shot, but they would only do it if I allowed them to publish my work under someone else’s name. I ended up doing the latter during a desperate moment, but I eventually quit after a few months. I realized then that I would rather be a regular office worker than be unable to get the credit I deserved for my creativity.
The Big Break
I stopped writing after getting married. My wife, Mary, wanted to become a stay-at-home mom, so I tried to make it happen by working hard and providing for our little family. The income was great because I was a marketing executive in a growing company, but I wasn’t genuinely happy with how my career turned out. Deep inside, I still wanted to be a writer.
The big break came one afternoon, however, when a literary agent called and praised my manuscript. I was confused at first about what he meant and thought that he might be prank calling me. The only manuscript I could think of was for the fictional story that I wrote many moons ago. No one had ever seen that except for my wife. I printed it and even had a cover designed for it, but I did not plan on looking for a publisher. I figured that my writing days had been over a long time ago, and I just wrote it because I had free time.
Once I got over the initial shock and understood that the man on the other end of the line was indeed an agent that Mary contacted on my behalf, I felt excited about writing again. My feelings intensified when the agent offered his help to get my book published. And in a matter of weeks, he managed to find a publishing company that read my work and believed in it.
Saying that I was over the moon when I got the first copy of the book in my hands was the understatement of the year. If I was honest, it felt like holding my baby for the first time. It was such a surreal experience. On my family’s part, they were very supportive of me. My wife always came with me wherever I went. Even my kids promoted the book to their friends and teachers at school and took pride in telling their peers that their dad was an author.
Nevertheless, things became a tad bit challenging for us when the publisher asked if I could turn the book into a series. I had many ideas for sequels, of course, but it meant that I would be unable to spend enough time with my family.
Balancing My Life As A Writer, Husband, And Father
My wife and I had been through enough ups and downs, so I was not scared to be vulnerable in front of her. I told her how much I feared taking another step towards my writing dreams because I might turn into a lousy dad and husband. Mary hugged me then and assured me that she would help me make sure that it would never occur. What we did was fix my schedule so that I had time for everything and everyone I held dear to my heart.
For eight hours a day, I worked in the office. I did not give up my position in the corporate world because — let’s be honest — it was a stable source of income. After work, I would help the kids with their homework and catch up with my wife. An hour or two before my family was up in the morning, I would be on the balcony, writing my next book.
This routine was so straightforward; that’s why it’s so effective. In no time, I got to send a new manuscript to my publisher and was later given the signal to write another one.
Am I at the peak of my career now? Perhaps yes. If there is one thing that I’m sure of, though, it’s that I made the right decision to major in both marketing and creative writing. Without the former, I would be unable to provide for my family. Without the latter, my life would be incomplete
If you are a parent, then by now you should already know that what you do and say around your kids make a lasting effect on them. It is important that when we speak to them, especially during these COVID times, when most of us, including children, feel the challenges that the pandemic has brought upon this world, we must consider how our words would make them feel. The phrases that we use when talking with them not only mirror our beliefs about life but also influence how they face their life challenges. And although most of the phrases that we usually say may seem safe and undamaging, these phrases could lead your children to grow up with low self-esteem and a mentality that is not beneficial for their future success.
Below are some of the harmful phrases that parents must not use during COVID times and always.
“I don’t like my job.”
You may have had a tiring and annoying day work, and your boss explicitly told you that the job you did was average no matter how hard you work on it, so you were so off, and you just want to vent to your spouse when you get home. But regardless of how your day was, you must not let your kids hear you say this negative phrase, as they will pick up on this kind of message.
Studies have proven that parents’ attitudes about how they talk about their job have an impact on foreseeing the future of our kids’ success, particularly their academic success. When you complain about your job around your children, this gives them the idea that work can never be fun, and it’s all just about earning a living to survive, not about fulfilling one of their life-long careers. It would be best to talk to them about career choices and how they could make their lives better by valuing what they do.
“We can never afford to buy that.”
If there’s something that your kid has been longing to have and he asks you if you can buy it for him, don’t tell him that you won’t be able to afford something like that forever. Don’t let him think that money is the only thing that’s keeping him from getting what he wants. Instead, tell your kid that for now, you don’t have sufficient funds to buy it for him, but that you can always try next week or the following month. Let him see that you are in managing your finances well, and with confidence, hard work, and patience, you can have almost anything you want.
Also, you can tell him about what you want, like buying your dream house for the family. Say, “I’m saving up for our dream house, but right now, it’s way off our budget. I’m working on an extra project, so that dream house will become a reality soon.” That’s giving them hope and spirit.
“You make me so furious.”
As a parent, it is crucial to stay calm and keep the desire to put the blame on your kids – or on anyone else for that matter – because of how we are feeling. Rather than getting mad for something that your kid did, a safer and healthier thing to say would be, “What you did was wrong, and I didn’t like it.” This will let them understand that it’s not him that you’re mad at but what he did, his actions. This will assure him that he can do better next time and be aware of other people’s feelings.
“Everything will be fine.”
If your kid doesn’t get chosen as the star player for the school team, making him believe that things will turn out differently won’t help him prepare for the future. For instance, this pandemic has been costing us our businesses, our children’s education, and a lot more. Telling your kid to wait without doing anything because things will turn out well soon is a lie and will definitely not benefit him. You will need to explain to him that the virus is infectious, which is why there are social distancing guidelines in place. He should know that we should do our part to help prevent its spread. Likewise, not being chosen to be part of something that is important to him is only one of the many small failures in your kid’s life, something that he must face and overcome.
Comfort your kid and tell him that perhaps he is best in different things or that he may just need to do more. Finally, encourage him by saying that there are a hundred more opportunities for him to showcase his talents and abilities. Just as the COVID times will soon subside, your child will also be strengthened by the fact that his failures will be replaced by successes, and they will only help him become as strong and successful as he can be.
Even during the opening day of the 2019 Craft Event, people knew it would be super successful. It was actually a whole-year event with different fairs, shows, and garage sales every month and in different neighborhoods. There was an assortment of unique handmade treasures including home décor and other crafts that the community members spent time making. The antique show was something that most people looked forward to yearly, as these were sold at relatively low prices compared to the bigger auctions.
Craft festivals were also held at different months and these festivals showcased a range of beautiful, bizarre, colorful, and transformed stuff from the community members. It was always fun and frenzy. Lastly, garage sales, which were frequently filled with lots of people, including those that are not from the neighborhood. Sellers were free to sell whatever they wanted and were assigned hours of the day to sell so that the stalls would not be crowded.
What To Buy In A Garage Sale
There are many articles online that warn people of the things that they should and should not buy during a garage sale. This is due to the safety issues or perhaps that some old stuff may be more trouble than they are really worth. These things include old cookware, baby items, and electronics. So what things are worth buying in a garage sale? Here are some suggestions.
Old sewing patterns of dresses, contemporary women, and the like.
Vintage maps so you can enjoy tracing where you came from
Classical books, old cookbooks, and history books
Old picture frames. The picture frames today are usually made from plastic but the classic ones are metal – very durable.
Old LCDs with the 70s or 60s music that your mom and dad will love listening to.
Antique décor, like figurines, dinnerware, frames, and vases.
If you happen to find an item that your parents or grandparents used to own but not anymore, then buy it! Take it home and make them happy. It’s always nice to buy some things that are worth buying, those that can carry a whole lot of memories from you and your family.
From timeless to current, from real-life to fiction to memoirs and biographies, these are some of the few books that I have read from the time that I stayed home. They have kept me moving forward every day and have made my few hours worthwhile. Cure your boredom one day at a time and get a hold of these books now.
The Plague by Albert Camus. A friend of mine recommended a virtual book site where I can read this book from, and when I did, I found a lot of solitude in this author’s work. It was quite challenging to look for it in the online library because it’s one of the many classic books that the millennials have probably never heard of. But I tell you, the fictional county where the supposed plague happens is a picture of the future if you imagine this pandemic progressing for the long-term. The book conveys the hopeful message of taking one day at a time and embracing what the unknown future holds. As per Camus, “I do not know what awaits me or what will happen when all of this ends, but for now, I know this – there are sick people that need curing.”
The Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling. You can’t argue with me on this one. Harry Potter has been and always will be one of my favorite reads and movies forever! It’s classified as a children’s series, but I don’t know. I find it rather enjoyable. The magic steers my creative mind, and each time I read, I become more and more confident that I have the power to unlock a door using the Alohomora spell. I invite you to try reading the first book (if you haven’t still). It has been my 3rd reading, and yet I am again drawn to the magic. I am also encouraged to survive this crisis. Harry did, amidst the bullies and the ruthless enemies.
Texas Gardening Almanac by Doug Welsh. Friends, so far, I find these times the darkest. We are often anxious and worried about our future, and we anticipate a coming recession. We won’t recover in just two or three months. I read this because I was thinking of learning to grow my garden and harvest a few fruits and vegetables that are safer and healthier. Plus, it’s going to help me save up big time. I wasn’t disappointed with the read, so why not read this on one of your dreary days? Perhaps after, you can share this with other community members so that in a way, you’re helping too.
Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman. This is a happy book, so it can never go wrong, especially during these times. The main character, Eleanor, does not know how to act socially. The story is all about her befriending a filthy man at work. They become close, and in one of their walks together, they encountered an older man who fell on the sidewalk whom they decided to help. Soon, these three personalities became good friends and depended on each other in almost everything. It is a reminder of how friendship can lighten up even the dullest days. I love this. I love my friends.
Recollections of My Nonexistence: A Memoir by Rebecca Solnit. This is a new book which just came out last March. She is a brave and assertive feminist. She writes about social change, activism, and climate problems. Despite the negative issues that she writes about, she manages to end on a hopeful and inspiring note. You can feel from her essays the rage she has over the social and climate issues that we are experiencing right now.
Her Body And Other Parties by Carmen Maria Machado. This I found interesting, and maybe you will too. When you’re stuck at home, you get bored pretty quickly. Lately, I tried experimenting on things, like migrating my kitchen to the outdoors, sleeping in the patio once a week, and putting paper decor on my ceiling. Maria Machado’s books are told in a highly fun and experimental way. It will make you realize that there is no one standard rule for writing something, and so with staying at home.
When I organized the 2018 Book Author Conference with my fellow writers, I was extremely excited. For one, I met authors from different parts of the state—some of which I genuinely idolized. I also invited a few well-known publishers and rising novelists to become guest speakers, and they responded positively.
What I did not expect at all was the number of non-writers who came to the conference. I guess it was wrong to call them as such because they were aspiring to become one. They went to the event, hoping that they could come across a successful author who could mentor them.
Assuming you also want to become an author, but you don’t know how to write your first book, here is a simple guideline to remember.
Think Of Your Genre
Genre is the first thing that you should decide on before anything else. Ask yourself, “In what topic do I want to be known for?” There is no right or wrong answer here; you can choose romance, thriller, science, self-help, etc. You can even write a memoir if you want. It is not advisable to keep on putting it off because the genre shows you where to start.
Create An Outline
An outline consists of ideas that should be found in the chapters, arranged chronologically. Feel free to write down subtopics underneath each chapter so that you won’t forget anything. You can see it as a very rough draft of the book in your mind.
Polish Your Drafts
I am yet to meet an author who can go from writing their first draft to publishing. Most—if not all—writers need to go through several drafts before they can feel that the book is already done. My advice is to keep on polishing your drafts before showing it to other people. If it feels right to you, then it must be good.
I should probably remind you never to write for your agent, publisher, or anyone else. A book becomes a success when the author cares for it 100%. In case you do it more for the money than for your passion, there’s a high chance that your efforts may go down the drain.