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Mental Health

4 Books and Podcasts That Will Leave You Inspired

I’m in a funk. If I’m being honest, I’ve been in a funk for a few months now. Sometimes when I’m in this headspace, it feels as though the world is against me and nothing will ever go my way. Whether it’s distress over my future career, sorrow over a relationship, or dissatisfaction with my 5-foot figure, I’ve been there, and I know I’m not alone. Life is not about what happens to you, it’s about how you deal with what happens. It’s about helping yourself, and that is what has brought me to write this today. Wallowing in self pity won’t help you — sounds harsh, I know — and looking at social media will not help you either. Watching TV may temporarily distract you, don’t get me wrong, but it most likely won’t help you in the long run either. Expanding your knowledge, though, will.

Whenever I’m feeling down, I read, but I don’t read just anything. Actually, I like to think my time is too valuable to waste on something that won’t make me a better person. So, to save your time, I compiled a fabulous list of the most divine books and podcasts for you to enlighten yourself with, not just for a chortle, but to leave you feeling empowered on those days you’re in a funk. For every issue you may face, here are a few reads and listens absolutely perfect for you. 

For the heartbroken…
Stassi Schroeder

Next Level Basic: The Definitive Basic Bitch Handbook by Stassi Schroeder

OK, this is easily the funniest book I have ever read. Schroeder is famous for her role on the show Vanderpump Rules, but what many don’t know is that she is also an author. As someone who is also going through a breakup, Schroeder gives many helpful tips on being a fierce force in a world full of rather inconsiderate men. She talks of gaining the confidence she so effortlessly flaunts, finding her voice, being a fashionista in Los Angeles and, of course, how she makes the perfect cocktail at 11 a.m. with no shame. 

If you’re looking for a good laugh and some unfiltered advice, check this book out here.

For the entrepreneur that needs a little inspirational kick…

Just B with Bethenny Frankel by Bethenny Frankel

I would seriously rather listen to this podcast for the rest of my life than any album or artist ever. Every time I listen to an episode of this podcast, I suddenly feel the need to start my own business and be the hardest working woman there ever was in America. Frankel is a self-made entrepreneur and founder of the lifestyle brand, Skinnygirl, and BStrong, a disaster relief initiative. With so many success, she has a plethora of career tips for those looking to own their own businesses, or simply for anyone looking to elevate their career. Frankel is bold, strikingly fearless in business and in life, and she is unapologetically hilarious. On Just B, Frankel shares her own experience with rising fame as an entrepreneur, and brings on a new guest each week for the ultimate scoop on his or her career journey. With guests such as Mark Cuban, Paris Hilton and Jonathan Adler, there is never a dull moment. 

If you’re feeling discouraged in your career or simply need some motivation to finish that paper like a boss, listen to Frankel’s podcast here.

For the one who needs some female empowerment…

My Own Words by Ruth Bader Ginsburg with Mary Hartnett and Wendy W. Williams

This book is a compilation of American Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s famous writings, speeches and personal recounts of life. With pieces from her days in middle school to her speeches in front of American audiences, this book is perfect for anyone feeling they aren’t strong enough to achieve big things. Ginsburg was everything elegant and powerful, and her passion for equality among all individuals is evident in this book. Ever since reading My Own Words, I’ve felt the need to go to law school and elevate my status to Judge Taylor, and you just might feel this too. 

Gender is an obstacle today, and it has been for a very long time. However, Ginsburg serves as a signal of hope for a more equal future. If you’re looking for a little female empowerment, you can find her book here.

For the one who needs a reminder that happiness is a choice…

Happiness Is…500 Things to Be Happy About by Lisa Swerling and Ralph Lazar

I always save the best for last, and this last book is my personal favorite. Not because it’s easy to read and doesn’t make my brain throb due to its long length, but because it brings me back to my childhood. Happiness Is… is a picture book with small reasons you should be happy. Whenever I’m feeling hopeless, I like to look through this book and remind myself of the little things to brighten my day. Happiness is the small things, whether that means “blowing bubbles,” “yelling from the top of a mountain and hearing you echo,” or “discovering underwater worlds,” there are plenty of things to be happy about. Happiness, in many ways, is a choice. 

This book is perfect for restoring your innocence and remembering the little things can bring you joy. So, if you’re looking for a spark of happiness, you can find this spectacular book here.

Whether you’re getting ready for a night out on the town, starting college, graduate school, or embarking on a new milestone in your life, a boost of inspiration will certainly compliment your soul. Do well and take advantage of the many resources out there, like these, that can help you push through the most arduous times. 

I hope these books and podcast spark your inner fighter and take you to that next level in life because they truly helped me and can help you too!

Taylor Walsh

Virginia Tech '23

Hi everyone! I'm Taylor Walsh and I'm a Professional and Technical Writing major here at Tech. I'm from Bristow, Virginia--about 40 minutes south of D.C. In addition to writing, I love painting, traveling, and hanging out with friends and family!
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