I decided to take a little break from college tips (no worries, I’ll get back to them next week!) to share my new favorite book with you! I’m the kind of person that will read a whole book in a day. Right now, of course, I’m reading more textbooks than anything, but hopefully, I can get back to reading my favorite books soon!
I am a sucker for books that make me think. Don’t get me wrong, a good story will always keep me turning the page, but there is something I love about a book that does nothing more than make you think. That’s exactly why I love Big Magic – Creative Living Without Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert.
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I, of course, don’t want to tell you what is in the book. That’s for you to read for yourself. Since it’s not a story, it’s also hard to give a vague plot that leaves you wanting more. So, I decided to pull a few of my favorite quotes, paraphrase a few of my favorite parts, and then let you know how to get a hardcover of this book for roughly $5.
“The difference between a tormented creative life and a tranquil creative life is nothing more than the difference between the word awful and the word interesting.”
Y’all, read that again. It has literally changed my life. If whatever you are creating, whether it be art, your lunch, or an essay doesn’t turn out the way you want it to, you have two ways of looking at it. You can say “that’s awful”, throw yourself a pity party, and live a tormented creative life. Or, and this is the option I suggest you chose, you can say “that’s interesting”, look at what went wrong, and try to do better next time. Shift your mindset from awful to interesting and your life will shift from tormented to tranquil.
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This doesn’t just have to apply to a creative life either. Your roommate isn’t awful, she’s interesting. Your professor isn’t awful, she’s interesting. The grade on your essay isn’t awful, it’s interesting. When things become interesting, you get curious and you look for solutions. Rather than wallowing in your awful situation, you can begin to wonder how to fix them. It’s all interesting, very interesting.
“One of the oldest and most generous tricks that the universe plays on human beings is to bury strange jewels within us all, and then stand back to see if we can ever find them”
Oh my goodness, how I love this quote. When you have the stresses of life, school, and work building up inside of you, it can be so easy to forget that you have a purpose in this world and that there is something special about you. Whenever you start to feel down, remember that the universe has put strange jewels inside of you. When you start to feel the monotonous pattern of life, try finding that jewel. Seek it out, you may be surprised with what you find.
“I have come to understand what part of me is suffering when I fail: it’s my ego”
“My saving grace is this, though: I know that I am not only an ego, I am also a soul”
These are two separate quotes, but they go together so well. Gilbert talks about egos, how they only want rewards and that sometimes, they don’t get that reward. People may hate what you create, but you aren’t creating for them. You are creating for yourself. (Another life lesson learned in this book). Although an unfavorable outcome may wound your ego, your soul is unscathed. As Gilbert puts it, all your soul wants to do is wonder. When people are criticizing you, remember it is only your ego that is hurt, not your soul.
Ideas and inspiration
The way Elizabeth Gilbert talks about ideas is so captivating. She treats them like they are people, maybe spirits. I’m not sure the right word for it, but she sees them as alive and it is such a refreshing way of looking at it. Ideas seek you out and they want you to bring them to life. Some are patient and will wait until the right time, others are impatient and leave if you don’t work on them right away. She treats inspiration as a person or spirit as well. Inspiration is alive and it will come to you when it wants to. I love her outlook on this topic and the numerous stories she has to prove her point.
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The Court Lobster
You will not understand this one unless you have read the book. It is too good of a story to put it here and I’m afraid I would not do it justice. Just trust me on this one, get the book and you will understand. Once you have read the book, remember this: always be the court lobster.
Dear book lovers with little to no money, I have a website that will change your life. I found this website not too long ago and I am in love. Thriftbooks.com sells used books which means you can find hardcover books for as low as $3 or $4. And, the books are in great condition. It’s honestly like buying them brand new! And for cheap! If you aren’t already sold on this awesome website, then this next tidbit of information will do it. You get free shipping on orders over $10. FREE SHIPPING. I’ve never seen anything more beautiful in my life. My last order with Thriftbooks.com cost me $11.89 for three hardcover books. Go check it out! If you’re a new customer, you can get 15% off your first order!
Have you read this book? Jump on Twitter and let me know what you thought of it, tell me about your favorite book, or just say hi!