No matter what your religious affiliation, inside of your body there is a soul that craves nourishment. Time spent reading material that inspires and touches you will enhance your stress management efforts. There are several authors I have found that stir my spirit each time I read their books or listen to audio CDs of their great ideas. I keep a special handwritten journal of quotes from many of these books and add to the material when I find something special. I use the computer for most of my writing and correspondence but find that writing by hand in this journal gives me time to slow down and give each quote proper time and attention. In times when I am spirit-hungry, I can pick up this journal and use these words to stimulate my soul.

Even reading time in small bits and pieces can invigorate me. One of my favorite authors, Victoria Moran, writes her books in short chapters that can be enjoyed anywhere. The first book I read by her is still my favorite: Lit from Within. It sits in a very prominent place where I usually go to sit some times per day (depending on how much water I have consumed) and each time I pick up this little book of wisdom I am blessed by reading just a few pages. I have two copies – one in hardback that I shared with my Mom and the other in the powder room that was signed by the author. Another favorite from her is Shelter for the Spirit. I have this on CD and listen to it when I am home alone puttering around in the kitchen or doing a downstairs straightening. It keeps my spirits up while I perform tasks around the house as it is all about making the home a haven.

I spend a lot of time in my car as I travel between two hospitals to see patients. I keep audio lectures by Dr. Wayne Dyer in the car to listen to during that commute time. I enjoy reading his books but prefer to listen to his longer lectures on CD. I have Secrets of an Inspirational (In-Spirit) Life in my car and have listened to it some times. Although I probably have most of it memorized by now, I still enjoy listening to it! It helps me to stay focused on what is important in life and keeps me positive even in trying times. This program is also especially useful for examining difficult life events in a different light and reframing your feelings and responses to those events.

Another favorite book is Gracious Living in a New World by Alexandra Stoddard. This was the first of many of her books that I have read and still the favorite that I go back to time after time. This particular book looks at how to make life special in each and every moment. Some reviewers have labeled this author pretentious, but I enjoy her work.

Just a few suggestions to get you started. Of course, if none of these authors seem to inspire you, keep looking. We are all individuals and enjoy different writers and styles. Just remember to spend some time nurturing your soul.

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