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Four Inspirational Books Every Millennial Woman Should Read

After the incredible success of GIRLBOSS, Yes Please, and Bossy Pants, inspirational books are really taking their spot in the limelight – especially those by fantastic and funny women.

There’s never been a better time to get some really good advice on optimising your life and reaching your goals. Whether you’re looking for motivation, are planning a big life change, or just want to while away your lunch hour, here are four amazing books that every millennial woman should read.

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?, Mindy Kaling

Mindy Kaling is something of a magician. Writer, actor, producer, and director make up just a section of her CV – which should include realist and comedian too. Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? is the first of her books, a collection of personal essays telling stories from her life up to now. It’s wonderfully light and sweet, and can cheer you up in an instant as it tackles day-to-day worries that have crossed everyone’s mind. She goes into how she got where she is today, recalling stories of impersonating Ben Affleck and theorising over Steve Carrell’s possible moonlighting as Perez Hilton. There’s an element of behind-the-scenes Hollywood cool to it, too, laced with important comment on the way people look at ‘girly’ women and body image. She stands for the feminine, romantic comedy-watching fashion-lover, and it’s a good reminder not to judge at face value.

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, Marie Kondo

Probably one of the most hyped books of the last few years. Marie Kondo is a Japanese organising consultant – which seems to be a pretty niche job, admittedly – but there’s a reason everyone has been going on about this book. It’s all about surrounding yourself with things that make you happy, rather than just lots and lots of stuff. We’ve all been a sucker for some advertising at least once, and there are probably a few unworn items lurking in the back of most wardrobes, but what Marie explains is that all that stuff isn’t actually serving you a purpose – it’s just taking up space. That satisfied feeling you get after tidying up can actually be something you feel all the time! There are a few unconventional suggestions – for example, thanking all your possessions after using them. If you can overcome having a quick talk to your handbag at the end of the day, however, you’ll find the rest is just about going through your things and being honest about what you actually like owning. If you follow it through, you’ll get rid of a lot of stuff. It’s really quite remarkable, and there is nothing more satisfying than a good clear out.

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Quiet, Susan Cain

In a world where the confident, the loud, and the extroverted seem to absorb the majority of the success, it’s so refreshing to see this book. The cover is beautifully – and aptly – understated, but inside it’s an analytical look at the wonderful traits of introverts, crossed with Cain’s own personal thoughts. From psychological profiles to her own advice for introverts on how to better navigate the world, she highlights all the good things that come from being quieter or needing time alone. This book is such an interesting insight into a world you never normally hear about – and it’s comforting to read and realise that whatever you think makes you socially awkward is just a reasonable reaction most of the time.

The Last Lecture, Randy Pausch

Randy Pausch was a computer science professor at Carnegie Mellon in the US. Probably not an obvious choice for reading material – but his story is a little different from most. When he was 45 he was told he had terminal pancreatic cancer and just six months to live. He chose to spend that time creating a lasting legacy for his young children, so that they could still grow up knowing their father. This book is the written form of his final lecture at the university, which you can also watch online. Of all the motivational, self-help style books to swamp the shelves, this is probably the most inspiring, touching, and devastatingly heart-breaking one you will ever read. His main focus throughout the lecture is how to achieve your childhood dreams. As he recalls memories and anecdotes from his life, he throws in practical, honest advice about working for the things that make you happy and how bending the rules and making connections can make all the difference. If you’re looking for a bit of motivation to go for your goals, this may just be the book you need.

Sometimes we all need a good reminder to make the most of our lives and shoot for the things we want. What books have most changed the way you think?

Written by:

Katie Hopkins lives amongst piles of books and pug memorabilia. As a copy-editor and freelance writer, she is always immersed in words, and is captivated by the world of careers and the pursuit of happiness, alongside a little fascination with true crime. She tweets as @katie_louh.

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