As I’ve said on previous posts, I am far from a Positive Polly. Especially at the moment after our failed IVF cycle. However, throughout my life and specifically in the past year, I have found that letting positivity prevail is the best, and often only, way to be. No one likes a negative nelly, and whilst it is very, very hard to sometimes believe the usual guff that “everything happens for a reason” and “it’ll be worth it in the end”, I really have to try and go forth with a positive mind-set as much as I can.
To that end, I have read a lot of articles, journals, and books since starting our IVF journey on positivity and how to create a positive vibe in your life that could potentially assist in struggles you’re experiencing.
Below I have written a summary on 4 books that I have found to be inspirational. On my darkest days I have reached for one of these and have always found them to help me see the light and to be grateful for the wonderful life I do have, and to stop focusing on what I don’t have.
These are not IVF books or in any way related to infertility, but are targeted at anyone who is experiencing a tough time in their life who needs a little bit of support and a gentle kick in the bum.
The views and opinions on these books are entirely my own. If I offend anyone, sorry!
1. ‘Happy’ by Fearne Cotton
I have to begin this synopsis by saying that I absolutely adore this book. It is not only a book, it is an interactive experience that includes exercises that really get you thinking about what you want from life, how you can achieve it and techniques on how to enjoy the little things in life. Essentially it offers a guide to happiness without setting yourself unrealistic expectations of happiness, i.e. “I will be happy when”, or “when I’ve done this, then I’ll be happy”. It encourages you to be happy in the here and now.
Throughout the chapters Fearne lets you in to her world and draws on her own experiences of depression and the ways she found to cope with it. There are questionnaires for you to fill out, themes for you to draw and space for you to write down your own thoughts and feelings. It really makes you think about how you view your life and the people and things that surround you. It also includes expert advice from the mental health charity MIND, a valuable resource for anyone experiencing a very low period.
Overall, I can’t recommend this book highly enough. It has been written and thought-out with such care and attention and really is a great addition to any bookshelf.
2. ‘Letting Go’ by Emma Woolf
The synopsis of this book reads “how to heal your hurt, love your body and transform your life”. And it really does just that. A lot of the book focuses on Emma’s life-long battle with anorexia and other associated eating disorders, however can be useful for anyone experiencing any type of hurt, low self esteem or a broken relationship with their body.
Through glimpses of humour and ironic notes, this book teaches you to how to love yourself again, to build confidence, open new doors and ultimately realise that you are good enough.
Although it’s told in an almost memoir-style, it offers unique ways to heal any hurt you’ve experienced, be it emotional or physical, and find your own path in life.
3. ‘Light is the New Black’ by Rebecca Campbell
This is the type of book I never thought I would read. I’m only just getting used to shaking off my sarcastic self and promoting positivity and good vibes like some sort of infertile female Dalai Lama, but this book looked to me like it really took the biscuit.
The synopsis talks about a new breed of women who are on the earth to bring bright lights into the world and bring you back to the calling of your soul. Really, I was starting to feel a bit sick.
Despite my initial scepticism however, there are elements of this book that I found really useful. If you feel like you have lost your purpose in life and need assistance getting back on track, then this book is definitely for you. It also enforces confidence, spirituality and gives some handy tips of meditation and healing exercises.
Overall, whether you’re looking for female empowerment or just a bit of a confidence booster, this book definitely has its place and is extremely well written.
4. ‘What Remains’ by Carole Radziwill
This book is technically not a book on positivity; rather it is a memoir written by someone who has experienced great loss.
If like me you’re a huge Real Housewives fan, you will recognise the name Carole Radziwill as being one of the Real Housewives of New York. Unlike many of the other housewives who are desperately trying to climb the ladders of society however, Carole is, or rather was, already there. Although a more down to earth woman you will never find.
Carole was married to Anthony Radziwill, nephew of Jackie and John F. Kennedy, until he died from cancer after only four years of marriage. Three weeks prior to this, Carole’s best friend and her husband (who happened to be Anthony’s cousin), Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy and John F. Kennedy Jr. were killed in a plane crash.
It’s therefore safe to say that Carole has experienced immeasurable loss in her life.
What Remains is a memoir of these tragic events and how she has tried to deal with them and move on to a new life; not the one she thought she would have, but a life all the same.
Whilst this book will more than likely tug at your heart strings, it is one of those stories that really gives me a kick up the bum when I’m feeling sad or sorry for myself about our own situation. To think that someone has been through the unimaginable pain that Carole has and still live her life every day to the fullest, enjoy every new opportunity and learn to love again, is really a lesson for us all to enjoy the time we have on this planet, and stop moaning about inconsequential things, as we never know when life will be taken away from us.