Making the most out of self-help books

Self-help books are some of the most popular reads to exist. Almost everybody has had experiences where somebody comes over to them, buzzing with excitement, and ask in the most fervorous manner possible, "Have you read that book? You really should, this book changed my outlook on life!"

Despite all the uproar regarding self-help books, most that I have read never seem to be, well, helpful. The first chapter is usually about some deep, pretentious hogwash about how abiding by just a few simple rules has the ability to change somebody's lifestyle and perspective entirely. The books then continue to list the most ludicrous standards known to mankind, for example, eating vegetables grown in your own garden while you live in a bustling city. To entertain the notion that these books could have the power to be life-changing is like saying that Hero Alom has the potential to win an Oscar. 

However, there are ways you can make the most out of your experience with a self-help book:

Set achievable dietary restrictions

Although there is no need to follow the strict, ridiculous regimens suggested, try to set a few boundaries. These boundaries should be something you feel comfortable with and do not have a difficult time adjusting to. For example, instead of refraining from eating red meat at all, you could limit it to once or twice every fortnight. 

Aim for practical and affordable

Buying organic fruits and vegetables to stay healthy, or paying a premium for an app to organise your day down to the minute may look good on paper, but is a whole different case when you're being realistic. Especially for students with tight budgets, expensive items that make life easier aren't the most facile to come by. Go for things that do not put stress on your wallet, but at the same time you can make the most out of.

Make an efficient routine

Allocate different pockets of time in your day to fit in some meditation or exercise tips from the book. All the time slots do not have to be filled with productive activities either; leave out time for your luxury and relaxation. There is no need to stress yourself out if the routine goes awry either, try to continue with your day as best as you can. Your life is not something you can map out, things are bound to spin out of control from time to time. 

Rubama Amreen spends her time bawling over fictional characters. Send help at [email protected]