The 10 Best Books I Read in 2023

This year has been quite challenging for me. Following the passing of my father last November, my focus has been on navigating the aftermath of his departure. In the first half of the year, I dedicated most of my time to managing his estate and sorting his belongings. Despite my accounting background and passion for organization, I find the administrative tasks and constant decision-making draining. This is especially true as an INFJ personality type.

Moreover, the absence of my father has resulted in new responsibilities within the family. With my elder brother also moving to a new home this year, I have felt increasingly stressed and overwhelmed. The family dynamics have shifted once again, and with fewer individuals to share the load, a sense of imbalance has emerged. While I value having my own private space, the increased responsibilities have proven to be a challenge.

People Leaving My Life Is a Recurring Theme

During the past few months, I went through a challenging period called “The Dark Night of the Soul.” This wasn’t my first encounter. In fact, it was the third time. During this period, I experienced random anxiety attacks, which I believe were related to the separation from someone I deeply connected with. I consider my close friend my “twin flame,” even though I use this term loosely. He left Singapore and returned to his hometown, further reinforcing the theme of people moving out of my life this year.

Thankfully, I’ve dealt with The Dark Night of the Soul before, so I know that surrendering and allowing myself to feel the emotions is key when anxiety arises. I know that the anxiety will eventually subside. Unlike my first experience in 2015, this time I feel okay most days. The anxiety comes and goes, and I’ve learned to embrace it.

In terms of work, my main focus this year is to grow my YouTube channel. I’ve noticed a significant drop in website traffic, so I believe it’s time to pivot and explore other platforms. As part of my year-end recap, I’ve created a video that provides a more detailed overview of this year. Watch the video below for more insights.

Where Did My Interest Go?

Due to the events of this year, my reading habits have unfortunately taken a backseat. I managed to read 28 books, many of which were quick reads. However, increased responsibilities at home have dampened my curiosity for exploring new subjects.

My enthusiasm for music has suffered a similar fate. Although I started learning music production last year, I have lost all motivation to create music since my father’s passing. The spark of interest seems to have vanished, and currently, it’s not something I focus on.

Looking ahead to 2024, I have a strong desire to spend more time in the library, a place that recharges me and makes me feel alive. Hopefully, this will reignite my curiosity and passion for reading and learning.

My Top 10 Favorite Books: 2023 List

I have a rule: I only include one book per author on my list. Even if I enjoyed multiple books by the same author this year, I only chose the one that I liked the most.

Disclosure: Please note that the links below are affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate and Bookshop Affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases. I will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase, but it will be at no additional cost to you.

1. The Psychic Pathway by Sonia Choquette

“To lead the psychic life takes courage to stand apart from the majority and to direct your life from within, focused on your inner counsel.”

Sonia Choquette’s books have consistently ranked #1 in my charts for two consecutive years. As someone who considers themselves intuitive, I was naturally drawn to learn more about developing psychic abilities. I read this book earlier this year and even enrolled in one of Sonia’s courses, Ask Your Guides, in June. The course was fascinating and I applied the techniques taught, resulting in a deeper connection with my spiritual guides.

However, I experienced a setback later in the year during the Dark Night of the Soul. I found myself stuck in ego perspectives and felt a disconnection with my intuition and guides. Despite this, I know they are still there and I’m determined to clear the space and continue developing my psychic abilities for the upcoming year.

This workbook is not just for those interested in becoming psychics, but also for anyone seeking to expand their spiritual awareness. Unlike other workbooks that mainly consist of exercises, Sonia Choquette includes a wealth of her own personal experiences as examples. Divided into twelve weeks, this book is particularly beneficial for beginners looking to improve their intuition or explore their psychic abilities.

Amazon: Print | eBook

Bookshop: Print

2. The 6 Phase Meditation Method by Vishen Lakhiani

“I’m not a big fan of meditation.”

I selected the above quote because it’s incredibly amusing! It reminded me of the candid yet perceptive remarks that my INTJ and ENTJ friends often make.

Furthermore, this quote effectively encapsulates the essence of the entire book. The author favors the term “transcendent practice” over “meditation” since the latter tends to evoke images of monastic routines.

If you’re facing challenges with traditional meditative techniques, I recommend trying the 6 Phase Meditation. It combines six powerful mental exercises into a single, comprehensive practice. These include connection, gratitude, forgiveness, creative visualization, intentions for the day, and blessings. The book is structured around these practices. 

Unlike lengthy meditation sessions, these practices are condensed into a 15-20 minute daily routine, making them more suitable for the modern individual who has work commitments.

On a side note, Vishen Lakhiani, the author, is also the founder of Mindvalley. Over the past 5 years, I’ve gained valuable insights into spirituality through Mindvalley quests. Although I’ve decided not to renew my subscription next year due to budget constraints, it remains an excellent learning platform for those interested in spirituality, career growth, health, relationships, and the mind. Mindvalley offers a wide range of courses to choose from. If you’re curious about the courses, I recommend reading this article on my favorite Mindvalley quests.

Amazon: Print | eBook | Audio

Bookshop: Print

3. The Five Elements by Dondi Dahlin

“Once you understand that everyone has a challenge with his or her dominant element, and reacts to stress in their own way, then you no longer feel alone in your experiences.”

Dondi Dahlin, is the daughter of Donna Eden. I first learned about the Five Elements from their Energy Medicine for Gut Health course. This ancient system from China not only enhances our well-being but also offers profound insights into ourselves and others.

As a self-proclaimed enthusiast of personality systems like MBTI and Enneagram, I was naturally intrigued to delve deeper into this profound Chinese system. The book includes a personality assessment quiz for each element, allowing you to gauge its strength within you. While we all possess the five elements, a few tend to dominate. In my case, Water is my primary element, followed by Metal. When I read about the elements, I find it to be rather accurate.

Filled with a lot of real-life examples, you’ll discover techniques to balance your energy and gain insights into how your element influences your relationships in this book.

Amazon: Print | eBook | Audio

Bookshop: Print

4. A Balanced Life by Kimberly Parsons

“The prevailing theme I uncovered is that balance always has our higher self at its central core.”

In November, as part of my research for my blog posts, I delved into several chakra books available at the library. The information shared was quite similar. However, what set them apart was their unique presentation styles and organization.

One particular book caught my attention due to its readability. I have always been drawn to well-structured and easy-to-understand books. While some books provide detailed instructions on yoga poses and meditation techniques, I personally prefer videos for learning such practices.

What captivated me about this chosen book was its simplicity. It cuts straight to the chase without any unnecessary fluff. Each chakra is succinctly summarized, accompanied by practical advice on diet and behavior. The delightful colors and harmonious illustrations added to its appeal. This book is perfect for quick recaps and browsing when you need to refresh your knowledge.

Also, check out my top 10 chakra books for a wider selection catering to beginners and advanced learners.

Amazon: Print | eBook 

Bookshop: Print

5. Super Attractor by Gabrielle Bernstein

“Being a Super Attractor means that what I believe is what I receive.”

I discovered Gabrielle Bernstein’s books a while back, but it wasn’t until this year that I finally got around to reading one. 

This particular book delves into manifestation and the Law of Attraction. It guides you on how to strengthen your spiritual connection to effortlessly attract the things you desire in life. Whether you’re new to the Law of Attraction or have been practicing it without much success, this book is perfect for you. It teaches you to trust the Universe and overcome any obstacles that hinder your manifestation abilities.

The author mentioned her practices are greatly influenced by Abraham Hicks and Wayne Dyer, two beloved authors whom I also admire. Perhaps that’s why I resonated so deeply with her books. I look forward to reading more of her books in the future.

Amazon: Print | eBook | Audio

Bookshop: Print

6. Think Like a Monk by Jay Shetty

“The goal of monk thinking is a life free of ego, envy, lust, anxiety, anger, bitterness, baggage.”

This captivating title grabbed my attention a couple of years ago. It’s a book written by a former monk who shares his learnings and experiences from his time in the monk school.

After completing college, the author embarked on a journey to India to pursue a life as a monk. But after three years, he decided to return home and began coaching his stressful, old school friends on topics such as well-being, purpose, and mindfulness.

If you struggle with overthinking, procrastination, and anxiety, this book is a valuable resource for you. In the beginning, the author highlights the differences between the monkey mind and the monk mind. Then, throughout the book, the author teaches readers how to adopt the monk mindset without completely disconnecting from the modern world.

Taking inspiration from ancient wisdom, the book introduces various practices including breathwork, visualization, and sound. It will teach you how to let go of obstacles and external influences to create space for growth and find ways to serve others to create a more meaningful life.

Amazon: Print | eBook | Audio

Bookshop: Print

7. You Only Fall in Love Three Times by Kate Rose

“The purpose of our third love isn’t just to be in a relationship with each other but also to grow as individuals into our best possible selves.”

While researching spiritual awakening for my blog posts, I stumbled upon the term “twin flame.” Initially, I dismissed it as just another word for soulmates. However, as I delved deeper into the concept of twin flames, I realized that they are distinct and resonate with my special bond with my friend.

In this book, the author discusses three types of love: soulmates, karmic, and twin flames. Not everyone will experience these three types of love. Soulmate love resembles a fairy tale, love at first sight that feels comforting, but deep down, we know it’s not what we truly desire. Karmic love teaches us about ourselves and our needs through challenging lessons. It’s intense, starting passionately but ultimately causing pain.

Twin flame love is unexpected. This person complements and challenges us simultaneously. They defy our preconceived notions of love and relationships, yet we feel an undeniable connection. 

If you are interested in learning more about the three types of love, I recommend reading this book. It provides valuable insights into these concepts.

Amazon: Print | eBook | Audio

Bookshop: Print

8. The Light Between Us by Laura Lynne Jackson

“For much of my life, I tried to carve a path for myself that did not involve being a psychic medium.”

This memoir follows the captivating journey of a woman who discovers her true purpose and our interconnectedness with the world around us. 

The author used to live a double life. By day, she is an English high school teacher, but by night, she is a psychic medium. One day, she received a message that compelled her to share her story and the profound life lessons that emerged from her readings. 

A psychic medium is an individual who possesses the ability to read energy and establish connections with those who have transitioned to the other side. If you’re curious about the work of a psychic medium or their struggles, you will be interested in this memoir. 

However, this book is more than just a memoir. It shows us the spiritual realm and how to see the world beyond the physical form. If you are currently experiencing the loss of a loved one, this book will also offer solace and comfort during this time of profound grief.

Amazon: Print | eBook | Audio

Bookshop: Print

9. Expand Your Magnificent Mind by José Silva​​

“If you need $1 million, just give $10 million worth of service to humanity.”

José Silva, the creator of the Silva Method, has developed a powerful technique to consciously tap into our subconscious and unlock our psychic abilities. Curated by José Silva Jr and Ed Bernd Jr, this book is a collection of José Silva’s reflection and analysis. These brief short articles are easy to read and inspire you to change your life for the better.

What I love about this book is its ability to identify the pitfalls we encounter when manifesting our dreams. For instance, the author emphasizes the importance of directing our energy towards what we are willing to give, rather than solely focusing on what we want to receive. By embracing this perspective, we can align ourselves with our desires and manifest them successfully. If you seek a deeper connection with your intuition and the ability to solve life’s challenges, this book is an invaluable resource.

In the appendix, the book also provides instructions on how to access your intuition more easily by entering the alpha brainwave level. I found the audiobook version to be particularly relaxing, especially during the implementation of these techniques.

For those interested in exploring the Silva Method further, you can join the Mindvalley quest, The Silva Ultramind System, or watch the free masterclass. This is where I initially discovered this transformative method.

Amazon: Print | eBook | Audio

Bookshop: Print

10. Clear Thinking by Shane Parrish

“The truth of the matter is, you weren’t thinking. You were reacting, exactly like the animal you are. Your mind wasn’t in charge. Your biology was.” 

Published in October this year, this book is relatively new. It was also one of my recent reads. Discovering it while browsing in a bookstore, I found the preface intriguing. This book teaches us how to think, something we rarely learn in school or from our parents.

Drawing upon his years of experience as a former intelligence officer and the founder of the popular blog, Farnam Street, the author uses real-life examples and thought-provoking exercises to help readers reflect on their own thinking patterns.

The author emphasizes our tendency to rely on biological instincts, leading to automatic responses without conscious processing. These biases can cloud our judgment and prevent us from seeing the full picture. By recognizing these biases, we can learn to actively challenge them and make more rational decisions.

If you want to enhance your mental clarity, improve your thinking, and make better choices in life, this book is for you.

Amazon: Print | eBook | Audio

Bookshop: Print

Honorable Mentions

Below are a few other books I read in 2023 that didn’t make it to the list but are worth mentioning:

Yong Kang

Yong Kang

Hey there, I’m Yong Kang, best known as Nerdy Creator. I’m an author of seven books. I write about spirituality, self-compassion, and mindfulness. I love reading books, especially non-fiction. The list above is a combination of what I have read and my research. Each year, I create a Top 10 list of my favorite books.