Self-Help Psychology Books
“Key to Yourself”
by Dr. Venice Bloodworth. Publisher: DeVorss & Company, Marina del Rey, California, USA This book was first published in 1952. Its author, Dr. Venice Bloodworth, was at the forefront of the “spiritual psychology” movement. She was a pioneer, not only in her own career, but also in her personal life. In the 1930’s and 1940’s, most women were fortunate if they could complete high school. Even if they did graduate from high school, their major role was to get married and become a homemaker. Venice Bloodworth, however, decided to take a different, nontraditional path: She received a doctorate in psychology (a Ph.D.) from Northwestern University, Chicago. She later moved to Atlanta, Georgia and set up her own private practice. The principles that guided her own life and made her successful are outlined in her book.
“The Game of Life & How to Play it”
by Florence Scovel Shinn. Publisher: DeVorss & Company, Marina del Rey, California, USA This book was first published in 1925. The wisdom of its author, Florence Scovel Shinn, is amazing when you consider that it was written in the 1920’s in New York City. She was probably at least 60 years ahead of her time. Much of the wisdom that she spoke about in the 1920’s eventually appeared in the New Age movement that began to sweep across the United States in the late 1980’s.
“Think and Grow Rich“
by Napoleon Hill. Originally published by Fawcett Publications, Inc., Greenwich, Connecticut, USA This book was inspired by Andrew Carnegie, the wealthy American businessman, who disclosed his “secret” formula for obtaining wealth. While most Americans languished in poverty at the beginning of the 1900’s, Andrew Carnegie rose from an impoverished, uneducated background to become one of the world’s most wealthy men. Even today this book is a bestseller.
Overcoming Family Issues
“Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming your Life”
by Dr. Susan Forward. Publisher: Bantam Books, 1989, New York City, USA This book is one of the most powerfully written books about the impact parents can have upon their children. It deals with parents who are emotionally, physically, psychologically, or sexually abusive. It also talks about parents that have substance abuse problems (for example, they are addicted to drugs or alcohol or both) and the damage these parents can inflict upon their entire family. You may be shocked to discover how much influence your parents have had upon you. The “hand that rocked your cradle, made you who you are today”, is an old, but accurate saying.
“The Family: A Revolutionary Way of Self-discovery“
by John Bradshaw. Publisher: Health Communications, Inc., Deerfield Beach, Florida, USA This excellent book is based upon John Bradshaw’s powerful television series about family issues. This book focuses on the impact that your family has had upon you. As John Bradshaw states: ” 96% of all families are to some degree emotionally impaired, the unhealthy rules we are now living by are handed down from one generation to another and ultimately to society at large. Our society is sick because our families are sick.”
Inspirational (Overcoming Hardship):
“The Glass Castle“
by Jeannette Walls. Published by Scribner, New York, 2005 A memoir of resilience and redemption. The setting is in Welsh, West Virginia in the Appalachian mountains, a coal mining town with extreme poverty. If you think you have lived a hard life, then read about this family’s life in Welsh: no electricity, no heat, no food, living in a house that was literally falling apart with an alcoholic father and a mentally ill mother. The enduring faith that a better life was in their future pushed Jeannette and her brother and sisters forward, never giving up.
“Half Broke Horses”
by Jeannette Walls, published by Scribner, New York, 2009 The incredible true story of Jeannette Walls grandmother, Lily Casey Smith, born in West Texas in 1901. After her birth, her family moved to Arizona where at the age of 15 years she left home to make a life for herself in a remote town in Arizona. Life in rural Arizona, especially in the 1920’s, was a “rough and tough” cowboy culture where women were expected to stay silent and invisible. Lily was anything but that! She proved herself equal to any man, particularly when it came to breaking in the area’s wild horses. She drank whisky, played poker, and lived a man’s life at a time when such behavior was unheard of from a woman. In spite of such drawbacks, she created the life she wanted and became incredibly successful. She was a true pioneer, honest and direct and had a life few people could ever imagine!