Since I turned thirty several years ago, I have been all about self-discovery. I became master of my training and development at work, entering a development program that allowed me to discover my strengths and weaknesses, define my values and just learn about me. I have spent many an hour reflecting on my passions and how best to incorporate them into every facet of my life. Over the past year, I have noticed an unusual and slightly disturbing/intriguing trend – every time I stumble on a new question or reach a breaking point in my life, I find myself reading a book that helps me uncover the answers.
The first time this consciously occurred to me was with Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat, Pray, Love; I read it at a time when I was trying to find peace in an increasingly hectic and overwhelming world. Ms. Gilbert helped me find it. Earlier in the year, I was trying to figure out my future goals to align them with my strengths but was struggling to define my strengths. Enter Now, Discover Your Strengths, and I have a list that fits me perfectly, one I have been able to hone and build those strengths into my current role, my anticipated future roles and into my personal life as well. Looking for more career guidance? I get asked to review Career GPS. Starting a weight loss contest? A review copy of Substitute Yourself Skinny arrives in the mail.
The most recently finished book, This Is Not The Story You Think It Is, filled a void of which I was completely unaware. I found myself dog-earing pages in order to remember quotes. Almost every page spoke to me of happiness and empowerment. This sense of fulfillment I received from reading the book, the knowledge gleaned and have already started to incorporate into my life, got me thinking about books. Is it coincidence that I am picking up these books when they are most applicable to my life? Or is it something else? Eat, Pray, Love was sitting on my shelves for MONTHS before I finally picked it up to read; what caused me to decide that the time was right for me to read it? Is Someone guiding my reading choices, so that I am picking the books that are most appropriate for my life at that point in time?
Has this happened to anyone else? I ask because the first few times I noticed this phenomenon, I figured it was just a very happy coincidence. However, now that it keeps happening, I wonder. At what point in time does coincidence become something more? What does everyone think? Am I making more of this than it truly is? Should I even bother to question it? Am I all alone in thinking there is Something out there helping me through books? What are your thoughts?