The best source for understanding Martha Beck Life Coaching is–you guessed it: Martha Beck. Do check out her blog on whatever issue intrigues you; you are likely to find her incredibly funny as well as profound.
Her books on Finding Your Own Best Life (“Life Coaching” or “Life Design” for Yourself) are:
- Steering by Starlight: The Science and Magic of Finding Your Destiny (2009). Probably Martha’s most coherent, direct “instruction book” on figuring out how and why you feel stuck in life, and moving on to what your inner self really wants to do.
- Finding Your Way in a Wild New World: Reclaim Your True Nature to Create the Life You Want (2013). Martha’s newest: a sort of “Whole Earth Catalog” of ways to get in touch with Oneness and with Your Own Best Life.
Steering by Starlight: The Science and Magic of Finding Your Destiny, The Joy Diet: 10 Daily Practices for a Happier Life (not about weight loss), and The Four-Day Win: End Your Diet War and Achieve Thinner Peace (is somewhat about weight loss, and more).
If you want to go further: to work on Enlightenment and find and make Magic in the world, try these:
- Martha’s newest book is Diana, Herself, an Allegory of Self-Awakening (2016). This book is self-discovery wisdom, written as fantasy Fiction. Says Elizabeth Gilbert (of Eat, Pray, Love): “This book is everything. It’s a romp, a fable, a myth, an inspiration, a teachable moment, a true hero’s journey, a cautionary tale, and a fairy tale for an entirely new (or rather, ANCIENT) species of fairies. It’s rare that so much wisdom can be found wrapped up in such comedy, such kindness, such lightness of touch. It’s a perfect book. I want every woman I know to read it. This is storytelling at its very best, and also at its most important”.
- If you would prefer similar subjects in a more self-development form, with exercises, check out Martha’s Finding Your Way in a Wild New World .
Martha’s Expecting Adam: A True Story of Birth, Rebirth, and Everyday Magic is Martha’s autobiographical story of how, as a PhD student at Harvard, she began to learn that the world is a much more beautiful and magical place than what she had been learning as a high-achieving academic. “A wonderful book, funny unbelievably tender, and smart. It shimmers.”–Anne Lamott
Other Incredible Books & Videos:
- Lissa Rankin‘s Mind Over Medicine and her mystical The Fear Cure: Extensive, incredibly footnoted development that much of what causes people to heal or to be sick (only starting with the placebo/nocebo effects) that is totally ignored by modern medicine. Rankin, an M.D., quit medicine for eight years because our medical world “burns out doctors”, then came back to fundamentally change the way medicine is done in the western world. These books are starting to do just that.
- Brene Brown’s first two Ted Talks: The Power of Vulnerability (2011) and Listening to Shame (2012).
- Byron Katie’s “The Work”, in her book Loving What Is: Four Questions That Can Change Your Life (a core text of our Life Coach Training), and the many videos of her demonstrating her work at her website.
- Fringeology by Steve Volk. “How I tried to Explain Away the Unexplainable–and couldn’t”. A journalist explores the mystical, and also explores why it is so difficult for people of a scientific mindset to be scientific about anomalous phenomena. (For instance, the brain registers an attack on your core beliefs with the same neural reactions as if a lion is attacking you.)
The More Beautiful World Our Hearts Know Is Possible: Is it okay to take time out from saving the world to create local beauty or to take care of Grandma? Charles Eisenstein’s somewhat difficult book tackles our thinking and beliefs around huge causes, along side of the necessity and importance of small acts of caretaking and Love. Medicine for a burnt-out activist’s mind and soul.
And Incredible (but totally Credible) resources for Academics who suspect that there might just be more to all of this than they have been told that they are allowed to believe:
Extraordinary Knowing: Elizabeth Lloyd Mayer, a professor of psychology at Berkeley and organizer of sessions for the American Psychological Association, posts an impromptu session for professionals who have personally experienced knowing things that they couldn’t possibly know, and beautifully describes her spending the next decade investigating paranormal phenomena and the associated scientific literature with extreme scientific rigor.
Jill Bolte Taylor: My Stroke of Insight (Youtube and Book). What is like to live without that left-brain chatter in your head? Ask a brain scientist who lived it for 6 years after having a stroke. (Hint: it is incredibly beautiful; she didn’t want to leave).
One Mind: How Our Individual Mind Is Part of a Greater Consciousness and Why It Matters. Larry Dossey’s incredibly readable development of weird things you know of and have experienced (the sense of being stared at; sometimes knowing when a loved one is in trauma) through much grander documented proofs that science prefers to avoid incorporating.