Summer is a favorite time for a vacation at the beach, which calls for a good beach read to make your holiday complete.
What is a beach read? The popular book website Goodreads has some fun with its definition, saying: “It’s a book you read at the beach…right? Or perhaps it’s a book you’d like to read at the beach. Maybe it’s just a book that takes place near an ocean?”
But you don’t have to be at the beach. The Macmillan dictionary defines it as “a book you can take on holiday, which is good enough to keep you engaged but not so serious it will spoil your holiday.”
So in the interests of enjoying a good beach read in any location and at any time, here are our top 5 suggestions for great, inspiring beach reads, with a focus on health and self care.
1. The Happiness Project
Gretchen Rubin describes the background to her book this way: “The days are long, but the years are short,” she realized while sitting on a city bus. “Time is passing, and I’m not focusing enough on the things that really matter.” She then dedicated a year to being happier, and writing it down for the benefit of the rest of us. She found that novelty and challenge are powerful sources of happiness; the smallest of changes can make the biggest difference; and more nuggets that you may want to copy.
2. The Self-Love Experiment
This book will help those who spend their energy looking after others. Shannon Kaiser will encourage you to carve out time to love yourself. Her book provides 15 concrete ways to be more accepting of who you are, which in turn will influence your relationships with the people around you. Shannon explains how she learned the secrets to “loving herself, finding purpose, and living a passion-filled life” after recovering from eating disorders, drug addictions, corporate burnout, and depression.
3. The Wellness Project
Don’t skip this one just because it’s another “project.” Phoebe Lapine, who writes the popular blog Feed Me Phoebe, has written a book about finding a healthy life balance. After being diagnosed with an autoimmune disease, Phoebe Lapine tried every fad diet and new health program to try and get well. In this book, she explores 12 of her own wellness directives, providing insight and humor into changes that truly impacted her health. There are even 20 healthy recipes included.
4. Does This Beach Make Me Look Fat?: True Stories and Confessions
We can’t be serious all the time! That’s where this fun beach read comes into play – it’s a combination of self help and good laughs. It’s written by authors Lisa Scottoline and her daughter Francesca Serritella. Here’s what Lisa has to say about this book, just one that they have written together:
“More and more, especially in the summertime when I’m sitting on the beach, I’m learning not to sweat it. To go back to the child that I used to be. To see myself through the loving eyes of my parents. To eat on the beach. And not to worry about whether every little thing makes me look fat. In fact, not to worry at all.”
We can all use a reminder to accept ourselves – and to wear the bikini, in whatever size!
5. How Not to Become a Little Old Lady
This is another one that reminds us not to take ourselves too seriously. Written by Mary McHugh, with humorous illustrations by Adrienne Hartman, this fun little book provides advice on how not to act older than our age. As a mini book, it’s also small enough to fit in your purse. It will give you over 100 pointers of things not to do to stave off little old ladyhood, like not boiling vegetables until they are gray. This easy to read book is perfect when you don’t have big blocks of time to read. Work your way through it a snippet at a time, and enjoy smiling when you’re encouraged not to carry a tissue up your sleeve.
Take Care of Yourself
Holidays are when many of us relax with a good book, taking our body and mind on holiday. It’s also a great time to try something new, like keeping a journal, or trying yoga. Some of our great beach reads will help you figure out a new routine that will benefit your health and well-being.
Whether you’re on vacation or at home working, it’s important to look after yourself. If you have any concerns about your physical or mental health, don’t wait. Use our Physician Finder to find a doctor who can help you on your wellness journey.