The top 10 books I have read that changed my life.


  I have never hid that I am a huge book worm.

When I was kid, I would sometimes play sick from school, just so I could finish a book that had kept me awake almost all night long.

Disappearing in to a dream land, where kings, castles and far away realms existed, helped me make it through most of my life.

When reality got to be too much, I could open a book and be transported to a magical world where nothing could get to me.

But most of my life I would only read fantasy.

I believed that self development books would help me, so I bought many. But they sat on the shelf, looking at me and making me feel guilty.

I suppose I could have just stopped buying them, but I didn’t. Like torture, I knew they would make a difference, bought them, brought them home, and watched them collect dust.

Until three years ago.

When I went in to my own darkness and had to face my inner demons.

As I struggled against fear, pain and anxiety, I reached for the self development books like they were water in the middle of the desert, and began to read them. And once I started, I couldn’t stop.

These are the top 10 self development books that have significantly changed my life, in no particular order, and the message that still resonates with me.

1.   The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz

This book is so sincere and easy to read. The 4 principles; don’t take anything personally, be impeccable with your word, do your best, and don’t make assumptions, are flawless in their simplicity.

My biggest take away was when Don talks about people spewing their poison at you, and can choose not to drink it. Of course!! People are going to try to force their thoughts, opinions and expectations on us, but we don’t have to take them in. This lesson was a game changer for me!

2.   The Desire Map by Danielle LaPorte

Cheers to my fellow Canadian!

When I came out of my darkness, I didn’t know who I was. I was so lost and disconnected, finding my own voice was hard. Reading The Desire Map reconnected me to my own feelings. What I wanted. But more importantly, it connected me to how I wanted to FEEL. Creating my core desired feelings in 2015 made a major impact on what I was able to clear and I have set new ones every year.

This year includes Affluent, Magical, Effervescent, Grounded and Spirit-Driven.

3.   The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks

THIS BOOK CHANGED MY LIFE!!! How many times do we stay comfortable doing one thing, when there is something else we are meant to be doing? How many times do we find a way to sabotage ourselves when we are about to morph in to our greatness? Welcome to your Upper Limit Problem!

From page one, I was completely invested in what this book was saying. I was picking up everything Gay was putting down. I love this book SO much, I buy it for every single one of my Avalon clients! If you are ready to bust through resistance, this book is for you.

4.   The Celestine Prophesy by James Redfield

After my awakening, I started to see the world differently. It felt quite lonely at first. The world felt so open, and bright, and full of opportunity. I couldn’t understand why some people in my life, couldn’t see it this way. There were quite a few months I didn’t understand what was happening. Then I read the Celestine Prophesy and everything made sense.

It was as though the author had reached in to my mind and took the words out of my head. I couldn’t believe it.

I loved that this book explained the energy of the world, and how we learn each level independently as we move forward. Once we have learned it, we then turn around and share it with the person standing behind us, until we have found our way to divine connection. Just writing that brings me joy!

5.   Codependent No More by Melody Beattie

Man did I ever resist reading this one. I mean, seriously resisted it. My therapist (love her so much) told me to read it almost as soon as I started working with her and I just wouldn’t do it. Until I wrote my first book My Kid is Driving me Crazy. Oh my f*cking god!!!! It was everything I needed to hear and more. If only I had read it in the first place! However, I now know that I wasn’t meant to receive the message in the book until I DID read it, but it was definitely a game changer in how I looked at my relationship with my mom and son.

If you struggle with a loved one who suffers from addiction or mental illness, I highly suggest this book. It made a world of difference in some pretty big relationships in my life.

6.   A Course in Miracles

So… I was baptized and confirmed Anglican, but viewed religion, or God really in a very angry way. Even though I don’t remember anything from church, there was always some discomfort whenever I would think of the bible. I couldn’t explain it. Then one day I started to hear angels, and my above mentioned therapist (who I had been seeing for over 10 years I may add), mentioned me coming to her house to study "A Course in Miracles". I had no idea what it was about, or why she suddenly felt I was ready, but it felt right so I joined.

My life has never been the same.

7.   Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert

I freaking loved this book. I inhaled it, and so did my husband. The idea that inspiration is alive and can shift and move away from us if we don’t tend to it, has brought so much clarity to my life.

I once met a man who made his decisions fast and yes, and it reminded me of this book. When you receive an idea to create something, go all in, or it will leave. I now instantly move on what I receive when I know it is for my tribe and what I am meant to do in this world. Big Magic is pure magic!

8.   The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

This book was a dream for my mind to enter and create. From page one, the story enraptured and captivated me. If you haven’t noticed in the above list, spiritual teachings really vibe me up, and this book has a frequency like no other. My body, mind and spirit was invested in each page. The trip of a lifetime to find your way to the one place the answer always resides… (I won’t spoil the end).

9.   You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay

I hummed and hawed about adding this book, but the truth is, it’s my go to book for every ache and pain I have. It never fails. To be honest, it’s in arms reach of where I sit for easy access. So I am absolutely adding it to the top ten list. I’ve always known that emotions that aren’t dealt often wreak havoc on the body, and Louise Hay masterfully explains this concept in detail AND created an encyclopedia of the pain and the emotion for us. I am sending major gratitude bombs to heaven for this amazing gift!

10. The Naked Mind by Annie Grace

Confession. I just started this book and am only a third of the way through, but it is blowing my mind and it wouldn’t be fair not to include it. This book talks about alcohol and how it is an addiction, but it is immersed in the conscious and unconscious mind, which totally gets me fired up. Our subconscious mind is driving our decisions in everything we do, even drinking, and learning how to reprogram that is everything. Science and spirituality meet in a perfect dance in this book for me. In love!

There are so many other incredible books that I have read that could have made the list, "Return to Love" by Marianne Williamson, "Start with Why" by Simon Sinek and "May Cause Miracles" by Gabrielle Bernstein, but the above ten are the ones that had the biggest impact on changing my life.

I am also guaranteeing you that there are loads of books that I haven’t read that you may be thinking, “how can she not have x book on this list!!!”.

As an honourable book worm, I read at least one development, and one fantasy book a week, so I am always open to suggestions!

Pop on over to the Facebook page and share your favourites! I have a list going as we speak and would love to add some more to it.

Books make me happy. The end.

Lots of love,


Tamara Arnold, The Enchanted Fairy