I often get asked what I listen to as 1) a woman, 2) a counsellor and 3) a business owner/entrepreneur. I'm always looking for ways to stay inspired, motivated and empowered. I find audiobooks are so helpful for this, because I can listen to them when I'm doing things that are not so inspiring... like my commute. So, depending on my mood at the time, here are some tried and true audiobooks that are classics IMHO.
Bossypants, Tina Fey. Narrated by Tina Fey. Well this is top of the list for a reason. Tina Fey's hilarious account of her life up to this point and "how it feels to be the boss" is punctuated by true stories that make me feel like I'm her bud. I like this book because it's SO funny and I'm intrigued by what it's like to be a successful woman in the comedy world. There are approximately one million great quotes from this book, and I'll choose this one to share: "My ability to turn good news into anxiety is rivalled only by my ability to turn anxiety into chin acne." This book is a classic.
Hard Choices, Hillary Rodham Clinton. Narrated first by Hillary which I liked, and then she brought in a pinch hitter, which I had to get used to. I don't want to lie to you. I had to google "pitch hitter" and then I found out it's really "pinch hitter". I'm not a baseball person but I sometimes use their terms incorrectly. Ok, so I originally bought this audiobook because I thought it was a good deal. 27 hours of listening for only 1 credit? Yes please! Full disclosure: I've only gotten through 3/4 of it. But I'm enjoying it so far because of Hillary's intense stories as secretary of state. I also feel like I'm learning more about US politics, past "current" events, and how to be a diplomatic leader who doesn't say the word "just" all the time. I admire Hillary for many reasons and feel like I'm learning more about her (and women in politics) listening to this book. One caveat: I would have liked it if she narrated the whole thing but I guess she didn't want to spend hundreds of hours in an audio booth. It really took away from my impression forming, but I guess I can just listen to the first part again to smooth out my "Hillary" voice.
What I Know for Sure, Oprah. Narrated by... Oprah! Well, if you want to feel like Oprah is talking directly to you about her life, then this audiobook is for you. This book is based on her monthly article in O Magazine where she discusses something she "knows for sure". She talks briefly about healing from childhood sexual abuse and a series of boyfriends that didn't treat her well. I like this because of some great messages, but mainly because I love Oprah.
You are a Badass, Jen Sincero. Narrated by Jen Sincero. This is a motivational, love yourself, funny book by a life coach who is no nonsense. When I've talked to people about this book they usually love it or hate it. Her goal is to motivate the listener to love themselves and follow their passion in life rather than living unconsciously. She has a very up front approach and is often quite funny. If you want an audiobook that will give you a playful but firm motivational slap in the face, this one is it. “Maybe, if you put your disbelief aside, roll up your sleeves, take some risks, and totally go for it, you’ll wake up one day and realize you’re living the kind of life you used to be jealous of."-Jen Sincero.
Yes, Please! Amy Poehler. Narrated by Amy Poehler. This is another great book about a strong, smart, funny woman in a male dominated industry. Amy Poehler is fun to listen to and discusses what it's like to be a strong leader (and what it's like to go into labour before she was supposed to be on Weekend Update, and ended up watching it from her hospital bed).
Playing Big. Tara Mohr. Narrated by Tara Mohr. Tara isn't funny-per-say, but this is an amazing book if you're going places. She explores how women can "play big" in their lives and reach their highest potential by recognizing their inner critic, embracing their inner mentor, challenging fear and detaching self-worth from other people's opinions. This book makes "playing big" not so scary.
There are many more audiobooks that I feel are fun/empowering and worth a shout out:
- Mindy Kaling's "Is Everyone Hanging Out Without me?" and "Why not me?"
- Rachel Dratch "Girl Walks into a Bar"
- Kristen Johnston "Guts"
I am ALWAYS on the hunt for awesome audiobooks by women who are living their best lives. Feel free to leave some of your favourites in the comments section.