A Crafter's Life, Audiobooks and Podcasts

Las Vegas and the “Ghost Children”

Have you ever wondered why suddenly you are upset or struggling with something and you do not understand why? Well it could be the “Ghost Children“…

Throughout 2018, nearly non-stop, I’ve been listening to non-fiction audiobooks (with a couple science fiction audiobooks peppered in).

Here is a list of many of the non-fiction audiobooks (all borrowed from my public library) that occupied my ears the past 8+ months:

  • I’m Judging You: The Do-Better Manual – Luvvie Ajayi
  • Awakening Your Ikigai: How the Japanese Wake Up to Joy and Purpose Every Day – Ken Mogi
  • Eat Fat, Get Thin – Mark Hyman
  • Living an Examined Life: Wisdom for the Second Half of the Journey – James Holli
  • Designing Your Life: How to Build a Well-Lived, Joyful Life – Bill Burnett
  • You Do You: How to Be Who You Are and Use What You’ve Got to Get What You Want – Sarah Knight
  • The Plant Paradox: The Hidden Dangers in “Healthy” Foods That Cause Disease and Weight Gain – Steven Gundry
  • The Power of Moments: Why Certain Experiences Have Extraordinary Impact – Chip Heath and Dan Heath
  • The Wisdom of Sundays: Life-Changing Insights from Super Soul Conversations – Oprah Winfrey
  • Nudge: Improve Decisions About Health, Wealth and Happiness – Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein
  • When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing – Daniel Pink
  • Faster Than Normal: Turbocharge Your Focus, Productivity, and Success with the Secrets of the ADHD Brain – Peter Shankman
  • Captivate: The Science of Succeeding with People – Vanessa Van Edwards
  • This Messy Magnificent Life: A Field Guide – Geneen Roth
  • Advice Not Given: A Guide to Getting Over Yourself – Mark Epstein
  • Soulful Simplicity: How Living with Less Can Lead to So Much More – Courtney Carver
  • Building a StoryBrand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen – Donald Miller
  • You Are a Badass at Making Money: Master the Mindset of Wealth – Jen Sicero
  • Rising Strong as a Spiritual Practice – Brene Brown
  • Yes Please – Amy Poehler
  • Fail Until You Don’t – Bobby Bones
  • The Art of Mingling: Fun and Proven Techniques for Mastering Any Room – Jeanne Martinet
  • The Artist’s Way – Julia Cameron

Between my daily walks (3 – 4+ miles a day), road trips, cross country plane rides, and sewing marathons, I’ve knocked off a lot of audiobooks so far in 2018.

Most of these audiobooks were highly engaging, filled with many useful ideas, tips, and inspirations; however one audiobook really stood out: Geneen Roth’s This Messy Magnificent Life: A Field Guide.

51p8yVuFvqL._SX454_BO1,204,203,200_
image credit: amazon.com

While listening to this audiobook, read by the author, I was introduced to the concept of “Ghost Children“. According to Geneen Roth, “Ghost Children” are the stories we repeatedly tell ourselves based on an unhealed/hurt part of us that believes things such as we’re not good enough, we are unlovable, we are not worthy – because at some point in our life, many times in childhood, we had unmet needs or a hurt which are still seeking to get comfort from.

Geneen Roth has done a lot of work with women who emotionally overeat (she holds workshops and has written books focused on this topic) and she ties the “Ghost Children” concept to why people emotionally overeat to comfort their hurting “Ghost Children” but I clearly saw a connection to other behaviors.

This connection helped me during a difficult time on a recent business trip attending a conference in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Las Vegas and the “Ghost Children”

I work in the healthcare industry and I attended a healthcare industry software related conference in late July/early August held at the Aria Hotel’s Conference Center in Las Vegas, NV.

2018-07-31_19-05-55_586
Las Vegas Boulevard

The healthcare software company sponsoring the conference was very generous to its attendees to include providing a private Train concert on one of the conference evenings, at the Brooklyn Bowl. I was very excited about this concert as I’ve like the band Train (Drops of Jupiter, Meet Virginia, Calling All Angels) since they first came out with their song Drops of Jupiter in 2001.

Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) accompanied me on the trip to Las Vegas and I confirmed with someone at the conference registration desk that he could also attend the conference. He is also a long time fan of the band Train, so I was excited to share this private concert with him which also included an open bar and food (as I said the sponsoring software conference company was very generous).

So the evening came for the concert and TTQH headed to the tour bus set up for conference attendees to be transported to the Brooklyn Bowl for the concert. While on line to load the bus, we discovered that only conference attendees with conference badges could get on the bus and attend the conference. TTQH was not able to attend with me.

We were in shock and incredibly disappointed as I had verified with the conference registration desk that he could attend, only to find out that the staff at the registration desk very misinformed. I was torn – on one hand I wanted to go to the concert on the other hand I did not want to just leave TTQH behind at the hotel with this sudden dispointment.

TTQH is a very enlightened and well-adjusted person (one of us has to be in the marriage – ha!) and he quickly recovered from the disappointment and strongly insisted that I just attend alone and have a great time.

So I got back in line and then got on the tour bus. The tour bus was filling up quickly and people were filling every available seat. Except in my row. No one sat with me. (This was likely because I had a very sad look on my face as I was so disappointed I could not share the concert experience with TTQH). The last person got on the bus and sat with the last seat available besides the one next to me.

So the entire bus was filled, except for the seat next to me.  Before I knew it I was quietly sobbing to myself on the bus ride to the Brooklyn Bowl and did not know why.

But – I remembered the audiobook I had recently finished, This Messy Magnificent Life: A Field Guide , and realized one of my “Ghost Children” had popped up!

When I was around 10 years old my parents had a major disagreement with other parents in the neighborhood and, unknown to me at the time, the other neighborhood parents had told their children not to play with me. For a couple weeks, none of my regular friends in the neighborhood, who I played with everyday after school, would play with me. They all ignored me.

I did not understand why and as you could imagine this was fairly traumatic for a 10 year old who was used to playing with most of the kids on my block for many years. Finally one of the children was kind enough to pull me aside and tell me what happened. It was a very upsetting and frustrating experience as I was being punished for something I did not do and I was now an outsider/outcast from my long-time playmates. It is one of those feelings you never forget and I guess it eventually became one of my “Ghost Children”.

Realizing where my sudden painful feelings were coming from as I sat alone on the bus (no one wanting to sit with me), helped me pull myself together. I decided: “yes I am attending this concert alone, but I am going to have a fun time and find a group of people to hang out with during the concert”. There is so much power in awareness of where an emotion/reaction is coming from – it gives you options on how you react.

And this is exactly what I did. Upon arrival, I asked a group of women if I could hang with them for the evening and eventually ended up in another group and had a wonderful time – a “Ghost Children” free evening!

The Train concert was incredible (I sat close to the stage in an elevated area of the bar to the right of the stage) and got to connect with some wonderful people before the concert and during. I learned some new trivia about some of their songs from another concert attendee: the lead singer, Pat Monahan wrote Drops of Jupiter about the death of his mother (now some of the lyrics I never understood make sense).

Here is a little excerpt from the concert (which was only open to concert attendees) – Train performing Lost and Found (I finally learned how to upload videos to YouTube):

I love the lyrics in this song (excerpt from Google):

My dad said son, one
Day we’ll have a drink together
You’re young
You got to take your time
Just trust
Let me raise you right, and later
We can raise a glass to life, and say
Here’s to the time we have
Here’s to the lines we crossed
Here’s to the ones we’re waiting on
And the ones we lost
Here’s to the time we have
Thank God for what we got
Here’s to the ones we’re waiting on, and the ones we lost
And found, the ones who stick around
Lost and found, the ones who stick around

 

I feel like writing Geneen Roth, the author of This Messy Magnificent Life: A Field Guide, and thanking her for introducing me to the “Ghost Children” concept. Thanks to what I learned from her book I was able to reset a moment and turn it around.

38235188_10212182140808357_5811144481528872960_n
Taking a break from the conference and relaxing at the Bellagio hotel, “Ghost Children” free

You are not a mistake. You are not a problem to be solved. It’s possible to treat yourself with outrageous kindness beginning today. Geneen Roth


Postscript

During the conference I got to attend my first TED Talks/TED Salon and that was a very cool experience.

38190952_10212182216930260_8407416683991400448_n.jpg
Dr. Andrew Bastawrous at TED Salon: Catalyst at the Aria Las Vegas

The TED Talks were focused on the future of health care. It was amazing after years of watching TED Talks online to see how formally TED Talks are filmed. There are hosts that coach the audience on etiquette for the Talk once filming starts.

The six speakers who talks about moving health care forward were amazing and here is a post on the TED Blog I found about the event:

Moving healthcare forward: The talks of TED Salon: Catalyst

2018-07-31_15-37-04_442.jpeg
A slide from one of the speaker’s presentation

By the way – I’ve finally finished my intense work on the secret art quilt project for a future WCQN show that is not yet announced. I am taking a little break from “creating” and then in the near future I will return to sharing what is on my design wall as I used to do in my What’s on the Design Wall series of posts.

 

 

A Crafter's Life, Fabric Scraps Obsession, Studio

Pinwheel Therapy

In my 11/6/16 post Pinwheel Piecing Party, I shared how I started making small pinwheels from a friend’s collection of trimmed triangles, that have otherwise been destined for the trash.

Here was my first load of pinwheels:

2016-11-06_15-18-05_728-2016-11-07t00_45_36-881

For the past week, as a way to escape from all the hate and unhappiness that seems to be seeping out of every corner of my country, I have been focusing on, during any spare moments, making more scrappy pinwheels.

In order to distract myself for awhile, I created a goal that I had to empty out the bag of pieced triangle scraps my friend gave me.

So I was busy at work “chain” sewing, or “chaining” little half square triangle blocks together. I was quite meditative.

IMG_3031.jpg

As a result, I now have approximately (I counted quickly) – 72 pinwheel blocks, each measuring approximately 2.5 inches x 2.5 inches!

IMG_3035.jpg

Also have two “oops” blocks, which I guess you might call – pieced “square within a square” blocks. My “pinwheeling” went awry during my piecing of these blocks!

IMG_3034.jpg

So what am I going to do with 72 (or more) 2.5 inch x 2.5 inch pinwheel blocks? Well your guess is as good as mine!

For now I am going to put them into my new “Parts Department” I created in my stash after seeing a trunk show and presentation by the Australian quilt designer, Jen Kingwell (see my post Revisiting Traditional Piecing). During her trunk show presentation she talked about using blocks from her “Parts Department” (leftover blocks from other projects, etc.).

Another project I worked on this past week was to go through my stash of fabric scraps and pull out all the scrap triangles and scrap small squares. I put them in separate bags to use for future improvisational quilting projects.

What’s next on the horizon for my crafting therapy? I am going to return to work on the traditionally pieced blocks last discussed in my post Revisiting Traditional Piecing: The Blocks Part II.


Postscript

A dear old friend in NYC, who has also being feeling blue about current events, sent me this photo to cheer me up a little – a photo of her sweet rescued kitty – Chummy – on a quilt I made her.

IMG_5411.jpg

Kitty cozy on a quilt! It is hard to resist smiling at that!

 

What timing !  The quilt that inspired me to start scrappy pinwheeling (which provided a therapeutic distraction) is connected to the photo a friend recently sent me to cheer me up!

Maybe the Universe at work, you never know (smile).

Audiobooks and Podcasts

Life is Nonfiction Revisited

(The featured photo is a beautiful sunset in Central Oregon, photographed while on my evening walk, listening to a nonfiction audiobook!)

Back in October 2014 I began a series of posts discussing my favorite non fiction audiobooks beginning with Life is Nonfiction. In the subsequent post: Life is Nonfiction: Part IILife is Nonfiction: Part IIILife is Nonfiction: Part IV, and Life is Nonfiction: Part V.

My sister is a Student Advisor for the Department of Social Work for a university. She contacted me yesterday to see if I had a list of inspirational books I recommended for their resource library for Social Work students (she knows about my addiction to self-improvement books).

I sent her the links to the above posts and then realized that since posting the original series, I have mentioned or discussed numerous other nonfiction audiobooks.

Somedays I cannot believe just how many nonfiction audiobooks (primarily in the “self-improvement” genre) I listened to over the past several years. Most of these audiobooks are from my local public library’s free digital downloads/audiobook loans; a couple of the books I purchased through audible.com.

I go on two walks each day for approximately 75 – 90 minutes of walking each day. This leaves a lot of time to listen to audiobooks. I also listen to them on the weekend while working on quilting projects.

If I am not listening to an audiobook, then I am listening to one of my favorite podcasts: The Miminalists, The TED Radio Hour, Freakonomics Radio, or The Moth Radio Hour. I am drawn to listening to material in which I learn something or I am inspired by someone’s personal story. Occasionally I do listen to a Science Fiction/Fantasy novel (I love Neil Gaiman!) or Young Adult Fiction (yes I have listened to the Hunger Game series, Twilight, etc.) but I continue to primarily seek out inspirational listens.

I put together the list below for my sister of my favorite inspirational nonfiction books and  I am sharing in this post as a summary of all my recommendations posted on this blog to date. (Disclaimer: In graduate school, we were required to use American Psychological Association (APA) format for citing references and bibliographies; this list is not in proper bibliography format and if you are a stickler for correct format – my apologies!):


Favorite Nonfiction Audiobooks Mentioned on the tierneycreates Blog:

  • Acuff, Jon – Do Over: Rescue Monday, Reinvent Your Work, and Never Get Stuck
  • Brown, Brené  – Daring greatly: how the courage to be vulnerable transforms the way we live, love, parent, and lead
  • Burroughs, Augusten –  This is how: proven aid in overcoming shyness, molestation, fatness, spinsterhood, grief, disease, lushery, decrepitude & more – for young and old alike
  • Cain, Susan – Quiet: the power of introverts in a world that can’t stop talking.
  • Dyer, Wayne – 101 Ways to Transform Your Life
  • Dyer, Wayne – Excuses Begone!: How to Change Lifelong, Self-Defeating Thinking Habits
  • Duhigg, Charles – The power of habit: why we do what we do in life and in business
  • Fey, Tina – Bossypants
  • Fiore, Neil – The Now Habit: A Strategic Program for Overcoming Procrastination and Enjoying Guilt-Free Play
  • Gilbert, Elizabeth – Committed: a skeptic makes peace with marriage
  • Gilbert, Elizabeth – Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear
  • Gladwell, Malcom – What the dog saw and other adventure stories
  • Gladwell, Malcom –  David and Goliath: underdog, misfits, and the art of battling giants
  • Gordon, John – The Energy Bus: 10 Rules to Fuel Your Life, Work, and Team with Positive Energy
  • Guillebeau, Chris – The art of nonconformity: Set your own rules, live the life you want, and change the world
  • Heath, Chip – Decisive: how to make better choices in life and work
  • Heath Chip & Health, Dan – Switch: how to change things when when is hard.
  • Huffington, Arianna – Thrive: the third metric to redefining success and creating a life of well-being, wisdom, and wonder
  • Huffington, Arianna – The Sleep Revolution: Transforming Your Life, One Night at a Time
  • Iyer, Pico – The Art of Stillness: Adventures in Going Nowhere
  • Jeffers, Susan – Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway
  • Kaplan, Janice – The Gratitude Diaries: How a Year Looking on the Bright Side Can Transform Your Life
  • Kelly, Matthew – Off balance: getting beyond the work-life balance mouth to personal and professional satisfaction
  • Kondo, Marie – The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing
  • Lamott, Anne – Small Victories: Spotting Improbable Moments of Grace
  • Levitin, Daniel – The Organized Mind: Thinking Straight in the Age of Information Overload
  • Levitt, Steven and Dubner, Stephen – Think Like a Freak
  • Loyd, Alexander- Beyond Willpower
  • McGonigal, Jane  – SuperBetter
  • Patchett, Ann – This is the Story of a Happy Marriage
  • Robinson, Ken  – Finding your element: how to discover your talents and passions and transform your life
  • Rubin, Gretchen – Better Than Before: Mastering the Habits of Our Everyday Lives
  • Singer, Michael – The untethered soul: the journey beyond yourself
  • Souza, Brian – Become Who You Were Born to Be
  • Stulz, Phil and Michels, Barry – The Tools: Transform Your Problems Into Courage, Confidence, and Creativity
  • Taleb, Nassim – Antifragile: things that gain from disorder
  • Tolle, Eckhart – A new earth: awakening to your life’s purpose
  • Tolle, Eckhart – The power of now: a guide to spiritual enlightenment
  • Weber, Lauren – In cheap we trust: the story of a misunderstood American virtue
  • White, Jennifer – Work less, make more
Audiobooks and Podcasts, Quality of Life

The Thorn Bushes Have Roses…

Abraham Lincoln said:

We can complain because the rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses

I have just finished a wonderful audiobook, The Gratitude Diaries: How a Year Looking on the Bright Side Can Transform Your Life by Janice Kaplan (2015).

In her book, Janice Kaplan shares plenty of meaningful quotes, like the one above, as well as wonderful stories (personal and of others) about living each day filled with gratitude. The author also provides lots of social science/research (aka “Malcolm Gladwell” style) that supports why true happiness and peace comes from living an existence soaked in gratitude.

A very inspirational and very joyous audiobook listen.

Photo Credit: Amazon.com
Photo Credit: Amazon.com

One of my favorite quotes in the book is one by the Greek Philosopher Epicurus:

Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for.

roses-66527_1920
Photo Credit: Pixabay
Audiobooks and Podcasts, Quality of Life

The Four Cardinal Virtues

I just finished the audiobook CD Excuses Begone!: How to Change Lifelong, Self-Defeating Thinking Habits by Dr. Wayne Dyer, positive thinking guru. I did not realize until doing a little “googling” for this post that Dr. Dyer passed on August 30, 2015. What a legacy he left behind.

I loved this audiobook and his writing appears to be heavily influenced by Eastern Philosophy. In the book he discusses Lao-tsu’s Four Cardinal Virtues. They really resonated with me and I wanted to share them with you:

Four Cardinal Virtues

  1. Reverence for all life
  2. Natural Sincerity
  3. Gentleness
  4. Supportiveness

What a beautiful and peaceful world we would live in if all humans lived these virtues.

IMG_2719

Audiobooks and Podcasts, Studio

Progress and Fear

Interesting combinations of words, huh? One sounds positive (Progress) and the other sounds, well…fearful (Fear)!

Actually the title is about two positive things!

PROGRESS

Making progress on the five (5) quilts that are back from the long-arm quilter and need bindings to be completed (refer to the posts “Some Progress Made” and “The Quilting Husband Saga Continues” for more info). Terry the Quilting Husband assembled the bindings and I have sewn them onto all 5 quilts. Now they are waiting in a nice pile to taken turns sitting on my lap and have their binding sewn down. Then they will be complete!

"Please complete us" (Pile-o-Quilts waiting for their bindings to be sewn down)
“Please complete us” (Pile-o-Quilts waiting for their bindings to be sewn down)

FEAR

My previous post was on Creative Inspiration: Words. Currently listening to Susan Jeffers’ fantastic audiobook Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway and feeling very inspired. I wanted to share her 5 Truths About Fear she has published on her website (susanjeffers.com):

  1. Fear will never go away as long as you continue to grow (this is a good thing)!
  2. The only way to get rid of the fear of doing something is to go out and do it!
  3. The only way to feel better about yourself it to go out and do it!
  4. Not only are you afraid when facing the unknown, so is everyone else!
  5. Pushing through the fear is less frightening than living with the bigger underlying fear that comes from a feeling of helplessness!

I am really enjoying this audiobook. Of course now you all expect that I will quickly complete the bindings on the stack-o-quilts as I should feel pretty fearless about them now…

A Crafter's Life, Audiobooks and Podcasts

Addicted to Audiobooks

I appear to be addicted to audiobooks – I listen while working on textile crafts, driving, walking, cooking, housecleaning, etc. I know it has truly become an addiction because I am currently listening to three (3) audiobooks at the same time:

  • Better Than Before: Mastering the Habits of Our Everyday Lives by Gretchen Rubin
  • Beyond Willpower by Alexander Loyd
  • Blue Labyrinth by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child

Alright, I am not actually listening to three (3) audiobooks at once (that would be insane) but I have three different audiobooks loaded on my iPhone and I juggle between the three of them depending on my mood.

It is all the fault of my local library (in true addiction you are supposed to blame someone else, right?) for providing an endless supply of downloadable audiobooks through the Overdrive app. If your library has digital downloads, and you enjoy audiobooks, you should take advantage of this free community resource.

Disadvantages of free audiobooks from the library include only being able to keep them for 14 days (they expire from your device after 14 days) and your library may not have exact book you want. I like the pressure of 14 days though – it makes me actually finish up the audiobook. Usually I have books going at various staggered intervals where one expires in 5 days while the other expires in 11 days.

I have been in the middle of a thrilling audiobook and then boom – it expires – and there are other library patrons who have it on hold so I cannot renew it. I end up having to put the audiobook on hold and wait my turn to finish up my book. But that is okay – it is worth it (and it is free!)

Happy Listening!

Audiobooks and Podcasts

Life is Nonfiction: Part V

We arrive at the conclusion of a series of posts which began with Life is Nonfiction, a listing  of my favorite nonfiction audiobooks and subsequent discussion of key insights I gained from listening to these books.

In my prior post in this series, Life is Nonfiction: Part IV, I opened with a brief discussion of  the fictional audiobooks I have listened to recently as part of my 2015 “a year of fiction”. I realized forgot to mention that I had recently finished the Ann Patchett’s book The Magician’s Assistant, a highly enjoyable listen about being in love with someone you cannot have, closure, and finding your own way. Currently I am listening to Ann Patchett’s The Story of a Happy Marriage, an excellent collection of her essays. After reading or listening to Bel Canto, State of Wonder, The Magician’s Assistant and now The Story of a Happy Marriage, I have decided to start with her earliest novel, The Patron Saint of Liars and read/listen to her entire catalogue of novels. I have become interested in exploring an author’s entire body of work. It is intriguing to find reoccurring themes in an author’s writing. So far several of Ann Patchett’s novels touch upon some version of unrequited love.

Now onto the key insights I gained from the remaining favorite nonfiction audiobooks:

Robinson, Ken (2013). Finding your element: how to discover your talents and passions and transform your lifeNew York, NY: Viking.

KEY INSIGHT: Be brave and identify where your passions lie. The pursue them!

Singer, Michael (2013). The untethered soul: the journey beyond yourself. Oakland, CA: New Harbinger Publications.

KEY INSIGHT: I think this book is a mandatory read for humans. I first read it and then I listened to the audiobook. The audiobook is humorous in a way, after reading this very profound book, as the narrator sounds like a slightly irritated New Yorker telling you to “get over yourself”. The key insight of the book is basically “get over yourself”! Don’t listen to your ego talking and bossing you around, find your real voice, the voice at your core. This book helps you dispel with the negative self-talk and “chatter” and get to the magic and the beauty of being a conscious living being. I must recommend that for your first exposure to this book – read the book and then if you want to revisit it listen to the “slightly irritated New Yorker” narration!

Taleb, Nassim (2012). Antifragile: things that gain from disorder. New York, NY: Random House.

KEY INSIGHT: Awareness of the fragility in systems, what makes them fragile, and how to protect yourself professionally and personally.

Tolle, Eckhart (2005). A new earth: awakening to your life’s purpose. New York, NY: Dutton/Penguin Group.

KEY INSIGHT: Like the book The untethered soul, this book focuses on the awareness of the ego and then letting go of the ego. Listening to this book helped me gain quite a sense of peace and release from things that I was obsessing and worrying about as ultimately many of them do not matter in the whole scheme of the universe.

Tolle, Eckhart (1999), The power of now: a guide to spiritual enlightenment. Novato, CA: New World Library.

KEY INSIGHT: Live in the moment. The past is not changeable and the future is not ultimately known. This book helped me let go of many worries and to appreciate what I am experiencing in the moment. This book is about being fully present in the Present.

Weber, Lauren (2009). In cheap we trust: the story of a misunderstood American virtueNew York, NY: Little, Brown.

KEY INSIGHT: This book was an enjoyable discussion on the history of frugality and that “being cheap” is not a bad thing!

White, Jennifer (2004). Work less, make more. Ashland, OR: Blackstone Audiobooks.

KEY INSIGHT: This book encouraged intense scrutiny of what was really important to me in life. I realized that my health care career was not at the top of the list. At the top of the list is family (including furry family members) and my tierneycreates creations!

Whew – not sure what I was thinking when I decided to take on discussion/key insights of so many nonfiction audiobooks. I hope you will find a book or two that inspire you after all these insights. I did notice repetition in “self-help” nonfiction audiobooks but repetition of important ideas/concepts can be a good thing. Happy Listening!

Audiobooks and Podcasts

Life is Nonfiction: Part III

I did not realize so much time had passed since my last post briefly discussing my favorite Nonfiction audiobooks that I enjoyed listening to while working on quilts and various textile projects.

Interestingly, I have decided for 2015 to try and make it a year of Fiction and to listen to primarily Fiction audiobooks while I working on quilting projects. I did begin in December by listening to Ruth Ozeki’s wonderful audiobook A Tale for the Time Being (2013), narrated by the author. I love when an author reads/narrates their own book – they are able to give the inflections and emphases that they want on the reading of their book. I have listened to several Barbara Kingsolver audiobooks and she does an excellent job of narrating her own books, giving a real sense of authenticity to the story. I also enjoyed listening to Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Love Pray and Committed) narrate her own books.

Of course my plan to primarily only listen to Fiction audiobooks did not lasted long, and I just finished listening to a very interesting nonfiction audiobook – The Disaster Diaries: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Apocalypse by Sam Sheridan.

Returning to the nonfiction audiobooks I originally listed in the post Life is Nonfiction: I realize you as the blog readers, can search the web yourself and read the synopsis/overview and reader reviews on each book; so I am going to just focus on the key insight(s) I gained from each audiobook as I continue the discussion started in Life is Nonfiction: Part II.

Gordon, John (2007). The Energy Bus: 10 Rules to Fuel Your Life, Work, and Team with Positive Energy. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.

KEY INSIGHTS: This book presents taking a different perspective/view of your life via a parable of getting on a bus and taking charge of the ride. Though this book is strongly focused on how to successfully lead and motivate a team by being a role model of radiant positive energy, for me it reinforced how destructive negative thoughts and energy can be on moving forward in my life. Although I know it in my heart it is wonderful to have a reminder to just say no to “victim” behavior and that I am in charge of how I react and act in life!

Gladwell, Malcom (2009). What the dog saw and other adventure stories. New York, NY: Little, Brown and Company.

KEY INSIGHTS: Malcolm Gladwell is another author who also provides the narration for his audiobooks. He narrated this intriguing book which is a collection of stories published in the New Yorker. The key insight I gained listening to this book is the importance of being open to different perspectives and experiences of others. Gladwell is a master storyteller and his stories make you think about how you would personally handle a specific experience and gain respect for what others have experienced and persevered.

Gladwell, Malcom (2013). David and Goliath: underdog, misfits, and the art of battling giants. New York, NY: Little, Brown and Company.

KEY INSIGHT: Another great nonfiction audiobook narrated by the author; the key insight I gained from listening to this book (which is also the theme of the book) – is it is not always a bad thing to be the “underdog”. Gladwell discusses many examples of where the outsider, underdog, misfit succeeds and why this success make sense. I like books which reinforce selecting the path less traveled and I admire the bravery of those who walk on those paths!

Duhigg, Charles (2012). The power of habit: why we do what we do in life and in business. New York: Random House.

KEY INSIGHTS:  1) The science behind habits and how habit operates in the brain; and 2) how to remake your habits – eliminate those you want stop, implement new positive habits, or modify existing habits. This well written and well researched book is about taking control of those habits you feel control you.

Fiore, Neil (2007). The Now Habit: A Strategic Program for Overcoming Procrastination and Enjoying Guilt-Free Play.  New York, NY: Tarcher/Penguin.

KEY INSIGHTS: Well, my key insight was that I have an issue with procrastination – but isn’t first admitting you have a problem the first step to dealing with it? This book provides an excellent plan to overcome procrastination and I did implement many ideas from the book. Unfortunately they did not include my plan on keeping up my blog on a more frequent basis! Seriously,  I think this book helps you work through an honest and non judgmental examination of why you really procrastinate. I found the self honesty empowering and each day is a new opportunity to as Nike says “Just Do It”!

Wish you all a very Happy New Year!

Audiobooks and Podcasts

Life is Nonfiction

Please see Sassy’s blog in Schnauzer Snips for an update on her (and her new brother Mike’s) adventures.

I like to multitask – even though I once saw a magnet that read (and I bought it for my fridge) : “Multi-tasking: Screwing a lot of things up at once”.

I could never just work on a quilt, in the quiet, I have to be also watching a movie, listening to music or an audiobook. When I was primarily working on traditional quilts from a pattern, I would watch what I call “Quilting Movies” – movies or documentaries that do not require my full undivided attention, just an occasional glance at the screen an listening to the dialogue. I have discovered that when I work on non patterned quilts – art quilts – glancing at a screen breaks my creative thought. Instead, a couple years ago I developed the habit of listening to audiobooks while I quilt.

My next discovery was that I enjoyed to listening primarily to nonfiction audiobooks and over the past 2 years I have listened to one nonfiction audiobook right after the other – while quilting, while walking my fellow blogger Sassy (and her new brother), in the car (audiobooks are exquisite for long drives), and while gardening, cooking, or cleaning. The nonfiction audiobooks I am drawn to are those that expand my view of the world, bring new insight and understanding, and contribute to helping me be a better version of myself. There are moments listening to these types of books that I had to stop sewing a moment, pause in my power walk or sit for a quiet moment in my garden when a big “Ah Ha Moment” came upon me.

Over the next couple of weeks (or more) I will share a little about audiobooks that I have found meaningful over the past 2 years. I will provide a brief summary of the book and share what were the key insights I gained from the books listed below.

Life is nonfiction.

Favorite Nonfiction Audiobooks (alphabetical by author)

  • Brown, Brené (2012). Daring greatly: how the courage to be vulnerable transforms the way we live, love, parent, and lead. New York, NY: Gotham Books.
  • Burroughs, Augusten (2012). This is how: proven aid in overcoming shyness, molestation, fatness, spinsterhood, grief, disease, lushery, decrepitude & more – for young and old alike. New York: NY: St. Martin’s Press.
  • Cain, Susan (2012). Quiet: the power of introverts in a world that can’t stop talking. New York: Crown Publishing.
  • Fey, Tina (2011). Bossypants. New York, NY: Little, Brown and Company.
  • Gilbert, Elizabeth (2010). Committed: a skeptic makes peace with marriage. New York, NY: Viking.
  • Gordon, John (2007). The Energy Bus: 10 Rules to Fuel Your Life, Work, and Team with Positive Energy. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.
  • Gladwell, Malcom (2009). What the dog saw and other adventure stories. New York, NY: Little, Brown and Company.
  • Gladwell, Malcom (2013). David and Goliath: underdog, misfits, and the art of battling giants. New York, NY: Little, Brown and Company.
  • Duhigg, Charles (2012). The power of habit: why we do what we do in life and in business. New York: Random House.
  • Fiore, Neil (2007). The Now Habit: A Strategic Program for Overcoming Procrastination and Enjoying Guilt-Free Play.  New York, NY: Tarcher/Penguin.
  • Guillebeau, Chris (2010). The art of nonconformity: Set your own rules, live the life you want, and change the world. New York, NY: Penguin Group.
  • Heath, Chip (2013). Decisive: how to make better choices in life and work. New York, NY: Crown Business.
  • Heath Chip & Health, Dan (2010). Switch: how to change things when when is hard. New York, NY: Books on Tape.
  • Huffington, Arianna (2014). Thrive: the third metric to redefining success and creating a life of well-being, wisdom, and wonder. New York, NY: Random House.
  • Kelly, Matthew (2011). Off balance: getting beyond the work-life balance mouth to personal and professional satisfaction. Ashland, OR: Blackstone Audio.
  • Kingsolver, Barbara (2007). Animal, vegetable, miracle: a year of food life. New York: Harper Collins Publishers.
  • Kornfield, Jack & Siegel, Daniel (2011). Mindfulness and the brain. Louisville, KY: Sounds True.
  • McKeown, Greg (2014). Essentialism: the disciplined pursuit of less. New York: Crown Business.
  • Robinson, Ken (2013). Finding your element: how to discover your talents and passions and transform your life. New York, NY: Viking.
  • Singer, Michael (2013). The untethered soul: the journey beyond yourself. Oakland, CA: New Harbinger Publications.
  • Taleb, Nassim (2012). Antifragile: things that gain from disorder. New York, NY: Random House.
  • Tolle, Eckhart (2005). A new earth: awakening to your life’s purpose. New York, NY: Dutton/Penguin Group.
  • Tolle, Eckhart (1999), The power of now: a guide to spiritual enlightenment. Novato, CA: New World Library.
  • Weber, Lauren (2009). In cheap we trust: the story of a misunderstood American virtue. New York, NY: Little, Brown.
  • White, Jennifer (2004). Work less, make more. Ashland, OR: Blackstone Audiobooks.
Listening to audiobook while I sew
Listening to audiobook while I sew