I haven’t read up on recent reviews of the whole 50 Shades phenomenon. It hasn’t been of interest to me, plus I am aware that the plotline enforces the myth that whatever we have in this life and in our intimate relationships simply is not enough.
Part of my “work” as a therapist for women is to read books about women from different eras, cultures and circumstance (tough gig, huh?). What I loved about these books below is that it has challenged and expanded my understanding of who I am as a Japanese-American female therapist in my 30s living in Orange County in 2015. These books also make space for imperfections, reconciliation, satisfaction of life as-is, and a renewed visual of success and beauty – all critical topics that us women discuss in counseling! Even if you’re not a bookie, I challenge you to replace just one hour of television (which de-activates the mind and provokes comparison and inadequacy for women) with reading (expands the mind and invites realistic pictures of women across history). Here are some fiction and non-fiction books that I have read within the last year that have positively impacted me. Enjoy!