There is a saying that goes thus, ‘You are what you read’ At some point in my life I read a lot and I hope to continue reading because most of the knowledge I have gotten aside experience, are from books… What Bie did here was a very brilliant review of these books and I already want to get them…Obehi.

I am one of those people that can’t keep her mouth shut once they find things that have worked for them and that others might find useful. I have been opportune to make acquaintance with a number of books that in my opinion are life changing … I just thought to share. Since my dear friend Obehi has a blog and is generous enough to allow others share things on her blog, I thought, why not? So here are my

top 5 books at the moment. While they are amazing, I do not take all they say hook, line and sinker but examine them to see how they fit with my life and context. For instance ‘Raising financially confident kids’ was written based on life in America. This does not make it useless to parents who live in other countries such as Nigeria, it just means you have to apply it to your context, stick with what works for you and throw out the garbage.

If you find it difficult to read a book to completion and have loads of books awaiting your attention like me, this might be helpful. A great way to successfully read a book is to form a book club with a group of friends. How this works is that you get a maximum of four friends, select the books you are all interested in reading and set a goal as to how long you want to spend on each book. Maybe you agree on one chapter per week or two weeks and meet at the end of that time to discuss the chapter you have read, or whatever works for you. You do not have to see in person if this is not convenient, with technology today you can meet via Skype google hangouts, BBM video chat, etc.

Here it goes:

His needs, Her needs by Dr. Willard Harley– An acquaintance of mine said recently that this book should be read by everyone before they go into a relationship and/or marriage. According to its writer, ‘This book will educate you in the care of your spouse’ and I dare add boyfriend??? Fiancé? . Not to worry if you haven’t read this and you are married, just get a copy and go through. According to the book, the two individuals that make up a relationship both have needs and when any of those needs are not being met, there is bound to be friction in the relationship. The book not only identifies those needs but also teaches how to fulfil those needs. I dare say reading this book will spark up some ‘ohh that’s why she does that’ and ‘no wonder he always demands that’ moments. The ten needs according to Dr.Willard Harley are: Admiration, Affection, An attractive spouse,Conversation, Domestic support, Family commitment, Financial support,Honesty and openness, Recreational companionship, Sexual fulfilment.
Some of these needs come before others and some apply to him while others apply to her. Find out more in this captivating book.

Raising Financially Confident Kids by Mary Hunt – I first heard about this book on the radio show ‘Focus on the family’ (an amazing program by the way) when Jim Daly was interviewing Mary Hunt about this book. What caught my attention was that she did not just write something from other people’s experience or her imagination but had tried, tested and proved this method in her own home. She grew up in a poor home and when she became of age, she thought all her problems stemmed from being poor and decided she wasn’t having any of that any more. She went about on a shopping spree, buying what she couldn’t afford in cash and before she knew it, she was swamped in debt. It took her many years to come out of debt but then she realised that she had to train her two sons to manage their finances so that they don’t fall into the same mess she found herself in. She presents a guide to what she did and more in this book. (I won’t tell you what she did so I don’t spoil it for you but …) What she did was absolutely fantastic in my opinion and it worked. Her first son got his first car at the age of 16, paid for out of his pocket, no borrowing, nothing. Both boys have never asked their parents to bail them out financially, one of them currently runs his business, they both live in their own houses and are very successful. Learning how to manage one’s finances and to be financially disciplined is one of the best gifts a child can be given.
Recently, I heard of a girl who was given money to pay for her studies from first to final year in the university but used it all up in a pool of ‘foolishness?’ Her parents had two options, send her another fees or end her education (take a wild guess as to what they did).
There are so many cases of people who have made wrong financial decisions and were thrown in the deep end as a result. Research shows that one of the main causes of divorce is finance. You will be giving your child a life long tool by teaching him/her how to be financially smart. Plus you might learn a thing or two yourselves. The beauty about her methods is that it not only teaches financial wisdom but also teaches core characters like: decision making skills, taking responsibility, problem solving, leadership. These are also the soft skills employers search for.

Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman – This is just an absolutely brilliant book. Well-done Gary! Based on his work with hundreds of couples that wanted to know how to love their spouse over donkey years, he found some re-occurring themes and decided to look into them. He then concluded based on this that there are five main ways that people give and receive love (5 love languages): quality time, words of affirmation, gifts, acts of service, or physical touch.
According to him, each person exhibits one of these as their primary love language and one might be doing everything they think should make their spouse feel loved but so far as he/she is not speaking their spouse’s love language, the spouse may still be feel unloved. Have you ever heard someone say this: ‘I give you everything you want yet you still complain’? Well, the problem here is that yes, you are doing a lot but you aren’t hitting the nail on the head. This is a great for building relationships as you can identify what makes you feel loved and communicate that to your man/woman as well as identify what makes them feel loved and speak that love language. It is also a great self-awareness tool. If you know what your love language is, you can play it to your advantage. A classic example is the gallant owner of this blog who never thought she could write or dreamed of owning her own blog until her
husband spoke her love language and today she’s found her passion for writing.

Confessions of a good Christian girl by Tammy Maltby – I stumbled on this book while on holiday recently and it is one of the most realistic books I have ever read … Still on it though. Contrary to popular opinion, being a Christian does not mean that one automatically becomes perfect. We live in a fallen world and truth be said, we are all fallen. This book is for all them ladies like me who have struggled with one thing or the other; failures, mistakes or shame springing from divorce, masturbation, child sexual abuse, rape, domestic abuse, suicide, name it! This book just about covers it all.
As a reviewer said: ‘This is a rare book indeed’. The church doesn’t address these issues, people sit afar and judge a person for the wrong they’ve done. Many churches today are a breeding ground for hypocrites. I don’t mean to be critical but with the way it’s wired, hardly anyone is honest about his or her brokenness. We are masked up to fit a certain profile or a picture that might not even exist as we imagine. Tammy does not only deal with true life issues but also talks about saving grace through it all using real life examples including hers. Have you experienced some sort of brokenness? Well, you are not alone.

By Biebele Alex-hart