5 Books That Change Your Perspective on Life

5 Books that Change Your Perspective on Life - Girl Reading in a Library

What makes a great book, anyway?

Think back to the most memorable books you’ve read. They’re gripping. You experience intense reactions as you read them.

And most of all? They change you.

Here are 5 books that will change your perspective on life. If you’re looking for a fresh read that’s motivated and uplifting, check these books out.

 

Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl

5 Books That Change Your Perspective on Life - Man's Search for Meaning

Have you ever felt like your life lacked meaning? You don’t necessarily feel hopeless, but some days it feels like you’re unsure whether or not your life counts for something.

We all seek fulfillment in the world, whether it’s unconsciously or not. This memoir by Viktor B. Frankl shares that perspective from inside a Nazi concentration camp — and it’s considered to be one of the most influential books in the world.

The idea that a book on the Holocaust leaves you feeling positive and inspired seems counterintuitive, but a Man’s Search for Meaning does exactly that.

The author was a former psychiatrist imprisoned in a concentration camp. He describes the terrifying experiences they endured to share how his fellow prisoners adapted their mindset to cope with the awfulness.

 

Switch by Chip Heath and Dan Heath

5 Books That Change Your Perspective on Life - Switch

Change is tough. Even when we seek out a change in the future, it’s scary.

Think about your first day of college. You could be counting down the days until move-in, but when the day finally comes? You get pretty nervous.

So why is change such a nerve-wracking experience? That’s the question the Heath brothers seek to answer in the book Switch. Their vision is simple: In order to motivate change in your life, you have to understand both sides of your brain.

We have a logical type of brain and an emotional type. Using a simple metaphor, the authors of the book explain how you actually change your behavior.

 

Congratulations, By the Way by George Saunders

5 Books That Change Your Perspective on Life - Congratulations, By the Way

Think back to your graduation. Do you remember the speakers?

Commencement speeches can be hit or miss, but the really great ones leave you feeling encouraged. They move you.

This book is an extended version of George Saunders speech at Syracuse University in 2013 — it’s perfect for recent college graduates or anyone in need of a pick-me-up. It’s an easy, short read. His main point might sound a little corny but it’s an excellent reminder of what’s really important in life.

 

Leave Your Mark by Aliza Licht

5 Books That Change Your Perspective on Life - Leave Your Mark

What’s your dream job?

Aliza Licht is a top publicist in the fashion industry and a career mentor for young graduates just getting started in their industry. Her book spills the insider secrets of her experience in PR and offers a straightforward guide for getting ahead in today’s professional world.

But it goes a lot deeper than the fashion industry. Her lessons apply to every industry — and it’s not just for women.

Aliza fully embraces social media. She shares advice on building your personal brand, how to communicate, and the social etiquette inside the corporate world.

 

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

5 Books That Change Your Perspective on Life

You might have already seen the movie and that’s okay. I still believe the book is worth reading at least once.

If you don’t know the premise yet, here’s a little backstory. Hazel is a 16-year-old girl battling thyroid cancer when she meets Augustus in a cancer support group. Augustus is currently in remission after years of facing bone cancer.

I won’t give away the ending, but this novel deals with oodles of tough topics like death, cancer, love, and the afterlife. Sounds kinda depressing, right? However, The Fault in Our Stars is equally heartwarming and inspiring too.

How to Enjoy Your General Education Classes in College

How to Actually Enjoy Your General Education Classes in College

Kinda sucks, doesn’t it?

You enter college thinking it’s about taking courses on topics you want to study, not more general education requirements.

In reality, most of your first two years of college are spent taking these mandatory classes (aka your “gen ed” courses). Like most things in life, there are pros and cons when it comes to these required subjects.

For example, when you’re undecided on your major general education can help you figure out what classes interest you. Sometimes the topics we think we’re passionate about–or think we should be passionate about–don’t really interest us at all.

Either way, since gen eds are a must-do for graduating from college let’s talk about what you can do to make the most of them.

 

How to Enjoy Your General Education Classes in College

How to Actually Enjoy Your General Education Classes in College

 

Find Out Who Teaches the Class (Before You Sign Up)

If you haven’t already heard of it, Rate My Professors is the website that will become the game-changer to your college experience. You just plug in the name of a professor into their search box (or the name of your school) and you’ll find reviews/ratings of their classes from your fellow students.

Obviously, you should use your best judgment with the reviews. Not every review is reflective of the professor. The students’ effort affects their experience in class too. However, it’s great for getting a rough idea of the experience. If every single rating for a professor is 1 out of 5 or you discover all of the reviews mention an impossible grading system, you probably don’t want to take that class.

I always used Rate My Professors when it came to my gen eds. What did I get out of it? I met some professors that I genuinely loved learning from because they made the class fun.  


Choose Topics that Grab Your Attention

Even though they’re required courses, you get to choose which classes to take. There is still a lot of wiggle room when it comes to general education. Not a fan of geometry? Take a statistics class to fulfill your math requirement. Don’t want to take another American History 100 class? Consider a class in art history or an area of history that interests you.

The more engaged you are in the topic, the better you’ll do in class. It’s just easier when you like what you’re learning. Who knows, you might even decide to switch majors after taking. That’s why colleges recommend you don’t put off these courses. You might discover a new opportunity or passion in life…or discover your current major isn’t the path you wanted to take after all.

If you take these classes early on, there’s still plenty of time left to change your major or figure out what industry excites you.

 

Don’t Make it Too Hard on Yourself

Not a morning person? Think carefully before you sign up for that 8 am MWF class. Like I mentioned earlier, you should choose your classes based on what subject matter interests you. Not on the convenience, availability, or how easy you think it will be.

Some courses might fit better into your schedule, but that doesn’t mean they’re a good fit. If you think about it, each class costs you hundreds of dollars in tuition. Why take something that is a total bore and waste of your time?

In order to make the most of your general education, don’t take a class that will make you miserable. Or if you take the class and realize it’s not for you, drop it ASAP before the cutoff date.

 

Talk to Your Classmates

Your gen eds are a great place to meet people outside your major. Engage with your classmates!

You can find amazing new friends and create relationships with people. Once you get to your junior year of college, the rest of your classes will mostly be with the same group of people. General education courses can introduce you to cool friends you may not have met on campus otherwise.

4 Reasons Why You Should Do an Internship in College

Why You Should Do an Internship

You’ve heard the advice a bazillion times.

Get experience before you finish school and you’ll have a better shot at getting hired when you graduate. Everyone makes it sound so easy…as if your schedule wasn’t already packed with exams and studying.

Here’s the thing:

Internships are a stepping stone that can launch your entire career. Sound too good to be true? It’s not. Formers interns report higher rates of employment and higher salaries than recent graduates who didn’t complete an internship.

But you know what else? Internships can offer you a ton of advantages when it comes to your future work (and personal life).

Let’s look at four reasons why you should do an internship.

 

#1 You’ll Discover What Things Are Really Like

To begin with, college internships let you see what it’s really like in the trenches. You get the opportunity to experience the reality of working in a particular role, or what it looks like to work for a specific company.

Why should you care? Believe it or not, your dream job isn’t always what it seems. I’ve been there myself. An internship lets you test out your dreams before you’re 3-years-deep into a career you absolutely hate.

If you find yourself on a career path you despise, you have to start all over again. This might not seem like a big deal. However, you might realize you can’t stand to work another minute at your stupid job at a time in your life when you want to focus on other things. Like your personal life. Or earning a higher income.

Without interning, you won’t really know what your vision looks like until you accept the position. Then you’re kinda stuck until you figure a way out.

 

#2 You Can Break Into Ultra-Competitive Industries

Want to break into an industry with fierce competition? You’ll need experience. There’s no other way around it unless you have some powerful contacts.

Internships lead to the chance to build an incredible network, spice up your resume, and learn the realities of your potential career path. These are all golden opportunities. You’ll be able to beef up your resume with your accomplishments, new job, and technical skills, giving you job experience that employers are seeking out today.

But let’s back up a little bit. Why does networking matter so much?

You often hear that finding a job is about who you know. This is often portrayed in a negative light; people sometimes look down on a candidate who landed a job based on their connections. But there’s more to the story than what it seems.

Networking doesn’t have to be sleazy.

It’s simply about having contacts in the industry who know the type of work you’re capable of producing. These are people who can trust you. These types of referrals can get you far, so stay in touch with your industry network! It’s easier than ever keep contact with these connections online, via email or a social network like LinkedIn.

Why You Should Do an Internship

#3 You’ll Learn How to Handle Situations

When you work as an intern, you get a glimpse into “the real world” of professional environments.

You see, there are many different departments within an organization or company. You learn how each of these departments interact with each other. Ultimately, you see how your job role affects other departments. You’ll learn more about how your work benefits your future employers–which helps you sell yourself as the perfect candidate–and learn how to climb the ladder to reach your end-goal.

You also gain experience working under pressure. Yes, you’re learning this in college, but it’s a lot different at your job. You get to make decisions and show your boss what you’re truly capable of.

But there’s one small catch. You might also get a first-hand glimpse into office politics. While you hope to avoid workplace drama, it’s inevitable sometimes. As much as it sucks, you want to learn how to handle these situations like a pro (so you can avoid them in the future).

 

#4 It Can Lead to a Full-Time Offer

While there’s no guarantee, you might get hired on as a full-time employee after your internship is finished.

I’ve seen it happen over and over again with my peers. Many companies will hire from their intern pools. It’s just easier that way because they’ve already devoted their time and energy into training you. Hiring for a job is a long process and these positions need to be filled!

Plus, once employers know how amazing your work is and can see with their own eyes how much value you add to their team, they won’t ever want you to leave.

 

So When Should You Start Looking?

If you’re looking for a summer internship, February is the best month to apply. It doesn’t hurt to start searching for what’s out there in the meantime. That gives you time to work on your resume and portfolio too.

But I’m going to let you in on a secret. Another option is applying for a fall or spring internship: there’s far less competition.

This is especially important if your field is in a hyper-competitive industry. For instance, I have a friend who attends one of the best schools in this country. She couldn’t find a summer internship, even though she applied to dozens. What did she do? Even though she felt discouraged, she kept searching over the summer.

By July, she landed the fall internship of her dreams.

Some programs require an internship before you can graduate. Other programs don’t make it mandatory but will offer credits toward your degree. If it’s not required, the choice is yours…but I think it’s worth it.

Resource:

How To Land Your Dream Internship: Proven Step-By-Step System To Gain Real World Experience by Tam Pham

Why is Crazy Rich Asians Important? Here are 5 Reasons to Read the Novel.

It’s already crushed tons of records over the last month, but Crazy Rich Asians shows no signs of slowing down its box office domination yet.

The mainstream rom-com has become the biggest summer hit in this genre since 2015. Why all the buzz? Why is Crazy Rich Asians important? Well, it’s significant for two reasons. In the first place, Crazy Rich Asians is the first Hollywood studio film with an all-Asian cast in over two decades.

Not to mention, it’s an opportunity for us regular folk to indulge in the lush, over-the-top fantasy lifestyle of the mega-rich.

How can you pass that up? It’s pure, fun escapism.

If you haven’t had a chance to catch the movie, go see it! Meanwhile, you should also check out the bestselling novel by Kevin Kwan. If you enjoyed the movie, you’ll love reading the books. Just be warned: they’re highly addictive.

If you aren’t familiar with the novel yet you probably want a little backstory, right?

The plot follows a young couple, Nick and Rachel. They’ve been dating for two years in the States, but Nick wants to bring Rachel to stay with his family in Singapore for the summer. When they arrive in Singapore, Rachel discovers her boyfriend is crazy rich.

Here are 5 reasons why you should read Crazy Rich Asians (and the rest of the trilogy).

 

1. RICH CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT

There are a bazillion characters to keep track of in this book. But they’re highly entertaining! Nick comes from a huge family, but as you get further along in the book you start to recognize everyone by their personality and how they’re all connected.

The novel digs deeper into the character development–it really fills in those gaps that weren’t fleshed out in the movie. While I personally enjoy Nick and Rachel’s love story, his family members are what make the story hilarious.

 

2. YOU’LL GET SUCKED IN BY THE DRAMA

If you think your family is out there wait until you meet Nick Young’s circle of relatives. They’re unwelcoming toward Rachel, to say the least. Nick’s family believes she’s in it for the money– they refuse to accept her because she’s an American. This leads to a whole lot of drama and entertainment from everyone.

And if you have trouble keeping up with the zillion characters in his family? There’s a family tree to help you follow along.

 

3. PEEK INTO ANOTHER CULTURE

The author, Kevin Kwan, includes snippets of Malay language throughout the book. This is one reason why I highly recommend the print version of this novel: He offers translations via footnotes throughout the book. On the Kindle version, these notes can appear of out of order.

Not only is the book rich with language, but you get to look at another culture. One that I didn’t previously know much about. Crazy Rich Asians lets you imagine the beautiful landscapes, mouth-watering food, and designer clothing of the wealthy elite in Singapore.

 

4. RICH AND DESCRIPTIVE DETAILS

Crazy Rich Asians paints an impressive portrait of opulence and culture. Seriously, you’ll be dying to taste all of the food he describes. You can see the exotic, vivid landscapes come to life across the pages. The glitz of luxury makes this book the perfect escape.  

 

5. IT’S AN EASY AND LIGHTHEARTED READ

Whether you need a break from the whirlwind of school or just want to read something amusing, this novel is a breeze to get through. You could easily read this in a day. Between the fantasy and drama, I couldn’t put it down.

It’s perfect to take along as a vacation read or you can save it for a rainy Saturday. And once you finish? Trust me, you’ll have questions. It gets even better with the sequels, China Rich Girlfriend and Rich People Problems.

So what are you waiting for? Check out the movie while it’s still in theaters and grab a copy of the book today!