5 Books to Read to Jumpstart the New Year

Looking for some inspiration to get you going this year? I read some great books last year that challenged both my faith and creativity and motivated me to pursue good work and cultivate a deeper devotion. If that’s what you need as you work through goal setting and resolutions, then consider the following titles. These are great books to read to jumpstart 2016.

5 Books to Read to Jumpstart 2016

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Start by Jon AcuffStart: Punch Fear in the Face, Escape Average, and Do Work that Matters by Jon Acuff

I love Jon Acuff! In Start he challenges you to face your fears and pursue awesomeness. We all want to do work that matters in this world and that can only happen when you determine to ditch the mundane and start on the journey to awesome.

I HIGHLY recommend the audiobook (or any of his books on audio for that matter) because Acuff reads his books really well and it’s an extremely entertaining listen!

The Art of Work GoinsThe Art of Work: A Proven Path to Discovering What You Were Meant to Do  by Jeff Goins

Jeff Goins is another of my favorite authors and in his latest book, he talks about looking at calling and creativity and what it takes to pursuing what you were meant to do in life.

When you can take a passion, that thing that you wake up dreaming about every day, and pair it with the mission to to fulfill the needs of others, you’ve got something wonderful. But it takes rising above the status quo and chasing something more than what society expects of you. No gimmicks here. Just hard work, passion, and a love for your fellow man. I read the hard copy I have (which was great cause I did much underlining!) but you can get the audio as well. Goins reads it himself and it is a pleasure to listen to as well!

Tortured for ChristTortured for Christ by Richard Wurmbrand

Okay, so let’s shift gears to something a bit more intense. I lie — way more intense. I listened to this as an audiobook and amazing doesn’t do this book justice. I’m going to take the liberty and assume that your spiritual life could use some bolstering. Mine always does.

I don’t spend enough time truly considering the religious freedom I enjoy and what Christians have suffered and continue to suffer for the cause of Christ. Don’t start another year forgetting what being a Christian truly means. Start off the year with a spiritual awareness, humility, and boldness to live for Christ in all you do. This book isn’t for the faint of heart but I HIGHLY recommend it. It will give you a series kick in the pants and should send you to your knees in prayer.

Radical David PlattRadical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream by David Platt

This is another kick-in-the-pants kind of book. Not quite as intense as the previous title but inspiring nonetheless.

It’s easy to get comfortable in our microwaved, mega-sized, over-hyped, suburban church culture. But is what we have what Jesus had in mind when He was here? No doubt our experience is worlds different from that of the 1st-century church.

This year, take a counter-cultural look at your Christian experience and challenge yourself to embrace the walk Christ set out for us. I listened to the audiobook version of this one and it was quite enjoyable!

Make it Happen CaseyMake it Happen: Surrender Your Fear. Take a Leap. Live on Purpose by Lara Casey

This one’s for the ladies. Casey tells the story of her life before she truly got a life. I remember listening to this audiobook in the car and thinking “Yes! I so needed this!”. Life is full of surprises and takes turns that we couldn’t have anticipated. Living in fear isn’t the answer. Embracing purpose and taking chances, trusting God leading and timing is the way to live a meaningful life. If you’re nervous about starting something new, if you’re tired of being stuck in the mundane and don’t know how to get out, if you need encouragement and the assurance that you’re not alone, then read this book. If you haven’t noticed yet, I’m a heavy audiobook listener and can definitely recommend this one!

Lara Casey also has a great website with some great products that are definitely worth checking out!

What titles do you have on your book list this year?

Happy Reading! 


The blogger at Purple Ink Studios is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com


The 2016 Reader's Notebook Page

5 Podcasts that Make Mondays Better

I love podcasts. They are one of the ways I stay inspired, motivated, challenged, educated, and entertained.

I’m trying to love Mondays. They are a chance to start fresh, do great work, and face challenges head on.  But man, are they difficult to lean into sometimes! Just like mornings can set the tone for the rest of the day, for me Mondays really set the tone for the rest of my work week. If I don’t get Monday right, I have a hard time making up for it during the rest of the week. So I try to fill my day with things that inspire and challenge me. Podcasts are great for this.

Below are five podcasts that are currently some of my top favorites. These are what inspire me, make me think, cause me to consider things I wouldn’t have otherwise considered, or simply make me laugh! If you haven’t ever listened to any of these, then I highly recommend you check them out and you may like them too!

5 Podcasts That Make Mondays Better

1. This is Your Life with Michael Hyatt

I’m a great Michael Hyatt fan, I love his blog. I’ve learned so much since reading Platform, which I reviewed on my book blog, and since becoming a Platform University student. If you feel like you want to embrace more of what you were called to do in your life, polish your talents, tackle life skills, and cherish your relationships, this podcast is for you!

This Is Your Life


2. Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me!

I love this NPR show. It’s funny and informative and I usually catch up on it during the week when I miss it on the weekend. If you just need an upper on a Monday-ish Monday, you know what I’m talking about, take a load off and listen to this show.

NPR's New's Quiz Show, Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!


3. A Way with Words

I loooooooove this show! You don’t have to be a word-lover or a book-nerd like me to appreciate this language show. Their tagline is “the show about language and how we use it,” and it’s super fun and informative and interesting!

A Way with Words


4. The Portfolio Life

I’m a great Jeff Goins fan. He just recently released the book The Art of Work which I’m itching to read but must remain on my shelf where it waits patiently for me to carve out time between school and the other books I’m currently reading. Anyway, he’s a great writer, blogs at Goins Writer, and is such a great inspiration, not just to writers, but to anyone who wants to engage in the work they feel called to do. The Portfolio Life has reeeeeeally great content and I love listening to episodes all through the week, not just Mondays :).

The Portfolio Life


5. This American Life

I’m such nerd, I know, but this is a great show. If you have never listened to This American Life, you should. It’s like what I dreamt reading the paper was like when I was a kid. You know, that consumption of great journalism that is so very dignified and intellectual and cultured. It’s well put together and tackles stories that I wouldn’t otherwise encounter. Great stuff.

This American Life

 


In the comments below, let me know what podcasts you love! I’m always up for checking out a new show!

Happy Monday, y’all!