The holidays are a perfect time to squeeze in a book you might not otherwise find the time for. As a gift from the Women of Influence team, we’re offering up our favourite inspiring reads to indulge in before jumping into 2016.
If Chimamanda’s inspiring TEDx talk “We Should All Be Feminists” wasn’t poignant enough, she’s adapted it and written a personal, beautifully-argued essay to define feminism in the twenty-first century. She’s drawn from her own experiences, in the U.S, abroad, and in her native Nigeria, to shine light on blatant discrimination, but also the more insidious, institutional behaviours that marginalize women around the world. Chimamanda writes in witty and clever prose to explore what it means to be a woman today, and the book is a confident rally for why we should all be feminists.
In the summer of 2010, Brandon Stanton moved to New York City with an ambitious goal: to single-handedly photograph 10,000 New Yorkers and create a photographic census of the city. Five years later, he’s grown his online audience to 15 million viewers and has written his second book, Humans of New York: Stories, stemming from the success of his first book, Humans of New York. His second book focuses on a whole new group of people, stunning photography, and more importantly, longer stories that delve deeper into the lives of more people with surprise, heartbreak, inspiration, and compassion.
How can you use a game to leap back from trauma and setbacks to recovery and personal growth? Jane McGonigal, game designer and author suffered a concussion in 2009. Rather than let herself sink into a growing depression, she turned her recovery into a game. Today, more than 250,000 people have played SuperBetter. The idea behind SuperBetter is that we can cultivate the same powers of recovery and resilience by applying its core concepts in everyday life, and be “gameful” in the face of stress. The book explains these psychological strengths you naturally display when playing, such as optimism, creativity, courage, and determination, and relate these to real world situations. SuperBetter is the ultimate, down-to-earth yet inspiring self-help book for those that need an extra push to live a better life.
Recommended by Indigo’s CEO, Heather Reisman, at our latest Toronto event, this children’s book will educate and inspire readers of all ages. Musical icon Robbie Robertson, born of Mohawk and Cayuga descent, learned the story of Hiawatha and his spiritual guide, the Peacemaker, as part of the Iroquois oral tradition as a child. Now, he is sharing the same gift of storytelling with a new generation. Whether you’re reading it to your children or to a friend, this beautifully illustrated and educational story is sure to inspire.
Jenny Lawson has a lifelong battle with mental illness, and she’s used it as the subject for her latest bestseller, Furiously Happy. This book is the go-to manual if you’re looking for joy in outrageous ways, and how to embrace everything that makes us who we are – the beautiful and the flawed. If you’re looking to laugh your ways through the holidays, whether you deal with a mental illness or not, Furiously Happy will have you in tears.