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Books to Help You Find Yourself

Recently, I have been struggling with balancing my academic life, relationships, and if I’m being completely honest, life in general. The past few months have been stressful in the sense that I have reached the point in my life where I am focused on finding who I am, what my passions are, what I like, what I don’t like, what career I want to pursue and who I want to represent? Right now, I am an Exercise Science and Physical Therapy (P.T.) major at the University of Scranton. Coming into college my first year, I was confident that my future entailed becoming a Physical Therapist. After entering into my second year, I am taking more major related classes and they have forced me to question if P.T. is my path or if this is what I am truly passionate about. Throughout this journey of self-discovery, I have picked up a few books that have helped make this process enjoyable. Thanks to these few books, I have been exploring my passions and redefining what I want for myself, and hopefully it’ll help those of you on the same path.


1. The Alchemist by Paul Coelho

In The Alchemist, Coelho tells a story of a young boy named Santiago, an Andalusian shepherd, who wishes to travel in search of his treasure. As the story unfolds, Santiago teaches the reader of reading the omens that we encounter throughout our lives, and the importance of listening to our hearts and following our dreams. Definitely a good read for those who are struggling with being true to yourself and finding the things in life that make you happiest. 


2. Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert

I’m sure you all have watched the movie Eat, Pray, Love with Julia Roberts and James Franco, so I definitely recommend reading the book. In this book, Gilbert voices her journey to self-discovery after a grueling divorce. She left her bustling life behind and set out to discover various aspects of her interest. Over the course of a year, Gilbert explored three different countries, while experiencing something new in each place: pleasure in Italy, prayer and devotion in India, and a mix between worldly pleasure and divine transcendence in Bali.


3. The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom by Don Miguel Ruiz

This book is good for those who are struggling to find joy and entangle ourselves in this idea of suffering. He talks about these beliefs that we have as individuals, that force us to limit ourselves from reaching our fullest potential. Ruiz presents four agreements that are mottos to live by and force oneself to open themselves up to new experiences and look at life in a different way. 

Ashna Patel

Scranton '21

Sophomore Exercise Science Major at The University of Scranton
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