419-630-5430 judy@judyguessphd.com
Select Page
The Last 10 Books on Dr. Guess’ Audible

The Last 10 Books on Dr. Guess’ Audible

I love getting book recommendations from clients and I tend to listen to a podcast and want the book written by whoever is interviewed. I thought it might be a cool idea to list out the most recent books on my Audible account.
These books have no particular themes, but I feel like all of them gave me a little something. The topics include: coping with grief, finding strength in unexpected places, as well as confronting fears head-on. Here are my thoughts on the books and I hope one or two might speak to you. Here it goes

#1: The Creative Act: A Way of Being by Rick Rubin

I love this book! I bought the audible and about half way through I broke down and bought the hardcover version as well. It is dog-eared and marked up. Did I say I loved this book?

Rick Rubin’s The Creative Act is an inspirational and insightful book that delves deep into the creative process. This book presents a variety of strategies to get more creative, including exploring different types of creative media and developing a creative lifestyle.

On a deeper level Rubin’s book spoke to that part of me that drips with the fear of being “not enough” or wondering “who do I think I am”. He emphasizes all humans are creatives and we are only limited to what we allow to filter into our awareness. I was pleasantly surprised with the approach to confronting all those existential crises that occur throughout our lives.

I bought this audiobook after listening to an interview with Rick Rubin on a podcast. I’m so glad I ran across him. The Creative Act is an invaluable read for anyone looking to get more creative or explore the depths of their creativity. Highly recommended!

Read this book so you can …

  • Learn strategies to get more creative
  • Develop a creative lifestyle
  • Gain insight into the creative process
  • Feel inspired and motivated to explore your inner creativity
  • Live a richer and more meaningful life
  • Connect with your own potential

#2: The Mountain is You: Transforming Self-Sabotage into Self-Discovery by Brianna Wiest

I decided to listen to this book after a session with a client. The Mountain Is You by Brianna Wiest is a must-read for anyone wanting to make meaningful and lasting changes in their life. This inspiring and informative book speaks to how to break through our self-imposed limitations, move past fear and uncertainty, and begin living with the courage, confidence, and clarity that comes from embracing who we are and what we want.

The Mountain Is You presents the tools to build a life that is built on their own terms and filled with joy, adventure, and success. The author shares her personal story of transformation, which makes the lessons learned easy to relate to. Her message of using mountain-climbing metaphors as powerful reminders of our own resilience and strength is both uplifting and inspiring.

The Mountain Is You offers practical advice on how to shift our mindset, create meaningful and sustainable changes in our lives, and move forward with intention. The exercises throughout the book are there to help readers develop a growth mindset while also helping them challenge themselves and push past their comfort zone.

Read this book so you can …

  • Learn how to break through self-imposed limitations and move past fear and uncertainty.
  • Gain the courage, confidence, and clarity that comes from embracing who you are and what you want out of life.
  • Discover practical advice on how to shift your mindset, create meaningful change in your life, and take action with intention.
  • Find a source of inspiration to reach new heights in your life journey with ease and motivation!

#3: The Winners: A Novel (Beartown Series) by Fredrik Backman

Fredrik Backman is one of my guilty pleasures for sure. I love his books and most of them have been “beach reads” – which are wonderful. However this series of books (The Winners being the 3rd in a trilogy) hits a little harder than a beach read.

The Winners is a compelling and inspiring story about the power of community, resilience, and hope. Set in a small Swedish town called Beartown, the novel follows the lives of its inhabitants as they struggle to rebuild their town after a devastating tragedy.

Through an engaging cast of characters (some of who I felt like I knew) and a powerful story, Backman conveys the idea that while we cannot always control our circumstances, we can work together to overcome them. The Winners is an emotional rollercoaster of a novel that left a lasting impression. It was hard not to think about the story even when I wasn’t actively reading.

Backman’s writing style is engaging and incredibly moving. He is able to capture the nuances of human emotions and experiences in a way few other authors can. This book is an absolute must-read for anyone looking to gain insight into the power of community and hope in times of adversity. There are valuable lessons to be learned from Backman’s characters and their individual stories, which make this novel not only enjoyable, but also thought-provoking.

Read this book so you can …

  • Experience the power of community, resilience, and hope in a small Swedish town called Beartown.
  • Receive insight into the nuances of human emotions and experiences through an engaging cast of characters
Get Fredrik Backman’s Beartown Series:
Beartown by Fredrik Backman on Audible or Paperback
Us Against You by Fredrik Backman on Audible or Paperback
The Winners by Fredrick Backman on Audible or Paperback

#4: Never Finished by David Goggins

Okay, first of all, this guy makes me feel super lazy! Second of all – if any of you know me – my daughter the hiker and runner bought it and told me to read it. I’m not sure if I should be insulted. I’d also like to recommend the audio version that includes extra features of conversations at the end of each chapter.

Never Finished is a powerful and inspirational book that touched my heart and made me want to push past my comfort zone (and I’m not a big fan of being uncomfortable). It details Goggins’ remarkable journey from a humble upbringing to becoming one of the most accomplished endurance athletes in history, showing readers how setting goals and taking steps to achieve them can lead to lasting change. Goggins outlines his mental and physical strategies, inspiring readers to take control of their own paths in life by pushing themselves beyond what they think is possible.

Goggins’ story is an inspiration to anyone looking for motivation to push their limits and take control of their own lives. The lessons outlined in this powerful book will help readers break through barriers and find the strength to succeed. Never Finished is a must-read for any reader looking to make lasting change.

Read this book so you can …

  • Learn how to set and reach ambitious goals.
  • Gain insight into the power of breaking through comfort zones.
  • Understand the importance of perseverance in achieving success.
  • Discover motivation for making lasting changes in your life. 

#5: Starry Messenger by Neil deGrasse Tyson

I am a little bit of a Neil deGrasse Tyson fan girl. If I hear or see him on a podcast, or youtube, or some Netflix special then I’m going to pause and listen. I love how he makes astrophysics – of all things – somehow relatable.

Starry Messenger by Neil deGrasse Tyson is a captivating, educational, and insightful book. Drawing from centuries of observation and study, the renowned astrophysicist provides an incredibly detailed look at our place in the universe. He touches on topics such as how the Earth’s position in the Milky Way impacts the night sky we see, why the stars twinkle, and the beauty of constellations. As he guides us through these celestial wonders, Tyson presents a captivating overview of our understanding of the cosmos, often peppered with his trademark wit and charm … I love his trademarked wit and charm.

The writing style is accessible to readers of all ages, from beginner stargazers to experienced scientists. Even those without a background in astrophysics will find it engaging, as Tyson’s passion for his subject shines through on every page. With its abundance of diagrams, photographs and illustrations, the book helps to develop the reader’s understanding even further. Make sure to download all the images on the audible version.

While exploring our place in the universe can be daunting, Starry Messenger is an incredibly rewarding read. It offers an opportunity to learn about our universe in a fun, informative, and entertaining way.

Read this book so you can …

  • Learn about our place in the universe in a fun, informative and entertaining way.
  • Develop an understanding of topics such as why stars twinkle and the beauty of constellations.
  • Gain insight into astrophysics without needing any prior knowledge or background in the subject.
  • Enjoy Tyson’s passion for his subject that shines through on every page.

#6: The Myth of Normal by Gabor Mate

Gabor Mate is one of the rockstars in the field of psychology. Pretty much if he has a new book, then I’m going to read it. This one really spoke to the normalization of all of those defense mechanisms we developed in childhood that may not be working for us anymore – you know, like when we’re 50.

Gabor Mate dives deep into the psychological, neurological and biological causes of mental illness. He dispels many of the myths and stereotypes that people have come to accept about those living with mental illness.

Mate begins by discussing how modern science has revolutionized our understanding of mental health. He then delves into why so many of us struggle with emotional, psychological and even physical issues. Through his thoughtful analysis, Mate demonstrates that issues such as anxiety, depression and addiction are often caused by underlying biological and environmental factors rather than simply being a matter of “weakness” or poor character.

Read this book so you can …

  • Gain insight into how our minds work and why we may struggle with certain illnesses.
  • Gain a greater understanding of the psychological, neurological and biological causes of mental illness.
  • Understand how different individuals may be affected by their environment or biology in terms of mental health issues.

#7: Educated by Tara Westover

Confession: I have read this book more than once and have listened to it more than once (mostly on long trips). This book is amazing! I made both of my daughters read it and neither one complained.

Educated by Tara Westover is an incredible and inspirational story of a woman’s journey from growing up in a fundamentalist, survivalist family in rural Idaho to becoming a Cambridge University graduate. The book chronicles Tara’s personal struggle for self-formation, as she faces difficult decisions about how to reconcile her past with the future she wants to create for herself.

Tara’s story is so beautifully written, and her courage in facing the challenges she faced is truly remarkable. The book left me feeling inspired to take stock of my own life and make a conscious effort to stretch beyond the limitations of expectations and reach for the future I want.

This book is a must-read for anyone looking to be inspired to break the boundaries of their upbringing or simply grow as an individual. It’s a beautiful story of self-discovery and courage that will stay with you long after you finish reading it. Highly recommended!

Read this book so you can …

  • Gain insight into the struggles and triumphs of a woman’s journey from rural Idaho to Cambridge University.
  • Feel inspired to take stock of one’s own life and reach for the future you want.
  • Learn how to break boundaries, face challenges, and grow as an individual.
  • Receive motivation to push beyond comfort zones.
Get Tara Westover’s Educated: A Memoir on Audible or Paperback.

#8: Greenlights by Matthew McConaughey

Okay, another confession. Matthew McConaughey is not only nice to look at, he’s fun to listen to. For the love of all that is worthy – listen to the audible.

Matthew McConaughey’s Greenlights is an inspiring, uplifting and refreshingly honest memoir about life, love, and the pursuit of personal growth. The book chronicles McConaughey’s personal journey from his childhood in Texas to his eventual superstardom. It is a deeply personal exploration of the many highs and lows of his life and career, sharing timeless lessons to be taken away.

McConaughey’s book provides a unique perspective on the meaning of success and how to live your best life. Through honest storytelling, he offers readers insight into what it takes to succeed – from hard work and determination to personal growth. Greenlights is an inspiring read for anyone looking for a little motivation or seeking to uncover their own life’s purpose.

Whether you’re just starting out on your journey or are already well on your way, Greenlights is a great reminder that life is all about following your passions and making the most of every opportunity.

Read this book so you can …

  • Gain insight into what it takes to succeed in life and career.
  • Learn timeless lessons about hard work, determination, and personal growth.
  • Feel inspired to pursue your passions and make the most of every opportunity.
  • Get motivated by McConaughey’s uplifting story of success.
Get Matthew McConaughey’s Greenlights on Audible or Paperbook.

#9: I’m Glad My Mom Died by Jennette McCurdy

Even though the title is a little scary – and especially since my daughter told me to read it – this was an incredible read. Despite the author being a child-actor from the days my kids watched “kid-TV”, I could relate so much to her story.

I’m Glad My Mom Died by Jennette McCurdy is a poignant and powerful exploration of grief, loss, and finding strength in unexpected places. The book is a raw portrayal of one woman’s journey through her mother’s death, and how she navigates the complex emotions that accompany it.

The narrative follows Jennette as she deals with the death of her mother, and the struggles that come with it. Jennette describes in vivid detail how she copes with her loss, from long days spent alone crying to moments of anger and confusion. Through these experiences, she discovers a strength within herself that she never knew existed before.

The writing is heartfelt and honest, capturing all of Jennette’s raw emotions. At times, it is hard to read, as she confronts her deepest pain and fears. Yet the narrative never feels exploitative; instead, it has an authentic and compassionate voice that truly resonates with its readers.

Overall, I’m Glad My Mom Died is a moving story of resilience and perseverance. Its honest and brave exploration of grief is both inspiring and heartbreaking, and it will stay with you long after you finish reading. If you are dealing with the loss of a loved one, this book can provide comfort, understanding, and hope. It’s definitely worth a read!

Read this book so you can …

  • Understand and cope with grief in a healthy way.
  • Find strength in unexpected places.
  • Connect with an authentic and compassionate narrative.
  • Gain hope and comfort from a story of resilience and perseverance.
  • Learn to confront pain, fear, and other difficult emotions head on.
Get Jennette McCurdy’s I’m Glad My Mom Died on Audible or Paperback

#10: The War of Art by Steven Pressfield

Yet another confession. Not only do I have the audible, but I have bought this book about a half dozen times. I keep giving it away. This is a book I return to over and over. It is a short, easy read and whenever I am feeling that resistance pop up – it’s my go to. I made my oldest daughter read it … well kind of. She quit half way through because she was going to “lose it” if she saw the word “resistance” one more time.

The War of Art by Steven Pressfield is a must-read. This work provides powerful insight into the psychological blocks that can stop individuals from achieving success and offers useful strategies for overcoming these negative influences.

Pressfield examines the inner struggles that many individuals face when attempting to move forward with their lives, and he offers an interesting perspective on what separates those who succeed from those who fail. He speaks candidly about the idea of “resistance” — namely, the negative inner voice that keeps one from taking action and moving toward their goals. He then goes on to discuss strategies for combatting this resistance, from recognizing and accepting it to developing daily rituals that help one stay focused and motivated.

The War of Art is a great read for those looking for an inspiring guide to overcoming the psychological blocks that impede success. It’s packed with practical advice and wisdom that can be applied in any situation, making it an essential companion for anyone looking to break through their current obstacles and find success.

Read this book so you can …

  • Gain practical advice on how to tackle resistance and other negative inner voices that can hold individuals you back from achieving goals
  • Gain powerful insight into what separates those who succeed from those who fail
I hope you have enjoyed my reviews of the most recent books on my audible account. Please shoot me a message if you have any recommendations of a book that has made an impact on your life.
Let’s Discover the Psychology Behind Your Reading Experiences with Dr. Guess!
Book Review: The Gown

Book Review: The Gown

The Gown” is a suggestion from one of my clients. She sold me on it. I never was one to follow the royals. However, I do have memories of the Charles and Diana wedding when I was in grade school. Maybe I was a little young, but I never quite understood why Americans were so enthralled. I gave it a chance and I’m glad I did.

“The Gown” by Jennifer Robson is a well-written historical fiction novel. It tells the story of two friends who work as embroiderers for the wedding gown of Princess Elizabeth. The novel is beautifully crafted, with a well-researched depiction of the post-World War II era in London. The characters are relatable and the friendship between Ann and Miriam is touching.

The novel delves into the lives of the embroiderers who created the iconic wedding gown. The history of the era is seamlessly woven into the story. Although the book does contain a trigger warning for difficult sexual content, the author handles the subject matter with sensitivity and respect.

One of the strengths of the book is the way it jumps back and forth between different time periods. Adding in just a touch of generational trauma to the mix. However, the time movement gives the reader a sense of the broader historical context. Although there are some coincidences that tie the story together conveniently, the book is a satisfying read overall.

I especially appreciate the author’s portrayal of the bosses.  They are presented in the story as reasonable and decent people who treated their employees well. This is a refreshing change from the typical villainous boss archetype that often appears in literature.

Overall, “The Gown” is a good read for anyone interested in historical fiction, particularly those who enjoy stories about friendship and strong female protagonists.

Psychological Slant

The story of “The Gown” highlights the importance of friendship and support in difficult times. The two main characters, Ann and Miriam, are able to navigate the challenges of their work and personal lives through their strong bond. Additionally, the book explores the theme of resilience and the ability to overcome adversity, as the characters face difficult circumstances and historical events. Overall, the psychological lesson from the story is that having a supportive social network can be a powerful tool for coping with life’s challenges.


The Verdict

Thumbs up for me.

Book Review: Essentialism

Book Review: Essentialism

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the demands of life and work, then “Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less” by Greg McKeown may help.  I struggle sometimes with all the details of having a practice, piles of todo’s at home, running from one kid event to another, and all while making sure my family knows they are my priority.  It’s easy to lose sight of what is essential when there is so much to do.

I find myself going to books about making life more simple on a regular basis.  This is an older book (2014) and has been on my shelf for closing in on a decade .  I have reached for it every 2 or 3 years when I feel a lack of focus.  I love the premise of “Less but better”.

As a former computer science student, I can’t help but think about the old mainframe machines.  If you were alone in the lab, everything was lightning quick. But, fill the lab up with 30 people working on their assignments that are due later that day and then it’s dragging.  The mainframes would split time among the users. If there are 30 users then you will get a slot of time every 30 slots of time offered.  Not only do you only get a fraction of the computational effort, but also much of the computer’s time goes to swapping between tasks at the expense of productivity.

In this book, McKeown argues that the way to achieve more is to actually do less. By focusing only on what is important, we can live a more fulfilling life and accomplish more in the process.  It would be like having the lab to yourself without the need to spend so much time redirecting your focus.
McKeown emphasizes the importance of saying “no” to non-essential tasks and commitments, and instead, learning to prioritize our time and energy on the things that matter. He provides practical tips and strategies on how to identify what is essential in our lives, how to eliminate distractions, and how to make the most of our time.
One of the most valuable lessons from this book is the distinction between “non-essentialist” and “essentialist” thinking. Non-essentialists try to do everything, resulting in a lack of focus and burnout. Essentialists, on the other hand, focus on what matters most and are able to achieve more by doing less.
“Essentialism” is well-written and an easy read, but can be a little bit redundant – maybe that’s the point. This is a thought-provoking book because it is so much more than the words on the page.  You can’t help but wonder while reading how each idea will apply specifically in your life.

The Verdict

A single Thumbs up!  Essentialism is a good read for anyone who wants to live a more meaningful and productive life.