Three great books to find clarity in your life and relationships

Books to read at La Crisalida Retreats, health and wellbeing retreat, Spain to find clarity

In this article I take a look at three books that you can pick-up and work through to help find clarity in your life. All three books contain great questions that can help you to become your own life coach, to take control of the life that you live. We have all three of these books in the library at the retreat for you to read during your stay with us. They are also available to buy and read at home. Working through these books with a pen and notepad is highly recommended!

Book 1 – Byron Katie: Loving what is

Four questions that can change your life

Loving what is book

If you want to pick up a book that gives you four insightful questions that you can ask, for any and every experience that is bothering you in your life right now, then this is the book to start with. It is easy to read, but that does not mean that it is easy to do! You need to be honest with yourself and really delve in deeply.

This book, Loving what is, is a great introduction to Byron Katie’s approach, called “The Work”. It is full of practical examples of problems, emotions and challenges that real-life people experience, based on her work with thousands of people over the many years since she started. These examples help to illustrate how asking specific questions about a problem or situation you are challenged or upset by, can help to make massive shifts and find clarity in your life.

The Work is based around four questions and a turn-around:

  • Is it true?
  • Can you absolutely know that it is true?
  • How do you react when you think that thought?
  • Who would you be without the thought?

And – turn it around

You start by writing a statement about the issue that is bothering you, an inquiry. You then explore your thoughts around this issue, using the four main questions. Supplementary questions can be asked and she shares a number of these in the book. Byron Katie also includes more details on the turnaround – turnaround means take the thought or judgement and look at it another way, for yourself, to the other and the opposite. Writing it here might sound a little weird, but the examples in the book make it really clear.

If you follow Byron Katie’s approach, you can find clarity and insight on relationships, work, finances, self-judgements, children, your body, addictions, thoughts, beliefs, the worst that can happen, and much more. The book includes chapters with examples for all of these areas. Byron Katie is very practical in her work and, if you feel quite overwhelmed, she suggests that you identify the one thing that is causing your stress right now, narrow it down and work on that.

The book also contains a number of interesting statements, two I will leave you with are:

  • When I argue with reality, I lose – but only 100% of the time
  • Would you rather be right or free?

Get it now on Amazon: Byron Katie, Loving what is (External link to Amazon)

Note: La Crisalida Retreats are an Amazon Associate and earn from qualifying purchases.

Book 2 – Susan Jeffers: Dare to connect

How to create confidence, trust and loving relationships

Dare to connect book

This short and easy to read book from Susan Jeffers is for you if you have ever asked:

  • Why do I feel lonely, even though I am surrounded by people?
  • Why do I feel like an outsider, looking in?
  • How can I increase my connection with my partner, children, work colleagues?
  • How do I approach people to make friends?

By asking insightful questions Susan Jeffers explores the topic of connection, to oneself as well as others. For example, in the chapter, Healing the lonely heart, she explores loneliness and explains how our reaction to loneliness can either galvanise us to take action to connect, or can lead to self-destructive actions as we attempt to fill the loneliness inside. We all need times of solitude to rest and rejuvenate, however many people are uncomfortable with silence or, more specifically, with the emotions that can arise during the silence. There is a chapter on connecting with your partner and another for single people who wish to meet a partner.

The chapter about work is also interesting. If you wish to progress or get-ahead at work, it can feel like you enter a competition with other colleagues. Susan asks some useful questions to equate getting ahead with caring with colleagues, rather than competition. For example, am I a positive force in this office? Do I help people to feel good about themselves by building them up, or do I pull them down by being judgemental and critical? Competition can help to alienate us from others. Connecting with others can help us to progress at work.

Susan Jeffers notes that trying to act the way we think others want us to act is a futile activity. I’m sure I’m not the only person to think “I wonder what he wants” and then try to be that person. (As I get older I’m getting less and less inclined to think and act like that!). We can never truly know exactly what that other person wants. However, the thing we can do is to understand who we are and what we want. When we find clarity about ourselves, we can honour who we are. If you are fiery and love to be running things, then don’t become passive and try to hide your passion and organisation. If you love deep conversations with one or two people and pottering in the garden, be that person, don’t force yourself to go out to rowdy clubs with big groups of people. By showing up as our true self, in all that we do, we can find the people to truly connect with, who appreciate us for who we truly are.  

Get it now on Amazon: Susan Jeffers: Dare to connect (External link to Amazon)

Note: La Crisalida Retreats are an Amazon Associate and earn from qualifying purchases.

Book 3 – Dr John Demartini: The Values Factor

The secret to creating an inspired and fulfilling life

The values factor book

What is the most important step you can take to achieve the life you’ve always dreamed of?

That’s a question to ask yourself! It feels like a rather large and important question, so The Values Factor is a great book to pick it apart. It begins with a thirteen-part questionnaire to help you to identify your highest values – the things that matter the most to you. John Demartini helps you to explore how you spend your time (and more importantly why you spend the time doing what you do), what energises you and what do you talk about, amongst other things.

By identifying your values, you can more easily identify where you can make changes to your life, so that all that you do meets your highest values. For example, two important values to me personally are my relationship with my partner and health. John and I decided to create La Crisalida Retreats together a few years ago back in 2013, and as a business it is rooted in health and wellbeing. (One of John’s values is wellbeing). We designed the retreat to be able to offer a healthy place for guests to stay, re-connect and re-balance, and to be able to explore how they can take responsibility for their own health and wellbeing. It enables me personally to continue to research and explore topics related to health, and to share that information with others (learning is another one of my top values). Whilst working with my partner does come with challenges, it has also brought rewards. That’s another one of the messages that Dr Demartini explores in this book – every “reward” has its opposite and equal amount of challenge, and vice versa!

The Values Factor also looks at how to link your goals and values, in seven areas of life, so that you can live congruently, with inspiration, love and gratitude. Dr Martini uses insightful questions to help you to explore your own life, your thoughts, emotions and reactions to events. It is quite an in-depth process which takes time to work through, but I feel it is really worthwhile.

Dr John Demartini is a human behaviour specialist, who has spent decades researching and teaching many topics. His landmark programme is the Breakthrough Experience. John and I have done a number of training programmes with John Demartini and we always leave feeling inspired and focused. You can read more about him and his training programmes on the website: (external link).

Get it now on Amazon: Dr John Demartini: The Values Factor (External link to Amazon)

Note: La Crisalida Retreats are an Amazon Associate and earn from qualifying purchases.

Find clarity in your life

Come and participate in one of our health and wellbeing retreats and experience the health benefits for yourself. If you are interested in exploring your values, thoughts and emotions in more detail, but feel that you need more support, you might be interested in our life and success coaching with John. Life coaches often ask questions to help you to find clarity and discover your own truths.

I hope you enjoy these three great books. Grab a pen and a notebook and get to it! 

About the author

Lisa is one of the founders of La Crisalida Retreats. She is an Epidemiologist, therapeutic hatha and yin yoga teacher and also teaches mindfulness meditation. Lisa has studied NLP and hypnosis, as well as nutrition (she designs the menus).