Let Me Out by Peter Himmelman

letmeout

Originally published in: 2016

What it’s about: Professional musician and innovation consultant Peter Himmelman explains his methods for unleashing creativity and breaking free of “stuck thinking.”

What made me pick it up: I figured that if I was going to read about creative thinking, it couldn’t hurt to see what a professional musician and composer had to say on the subject.

My favorite things: Himmelman argues that there aren’t really creative and non-creative types. He explains the ways in which we can all learn to be more creative and improve communication – as long as we’re willing to commit. I love that he includes specific activities to encourage creative thinking at the end of each chapter. He provides concrete examples of when to use them and illustrates their benefit in the given situation. He also offers plenty of illustrations from his own experiences of the kinds of “stuck thinking” that can sabotage creative efforts and ideas. There are a lot of great ideas here that can easily be applied no matter where you are in your life.

Who it’s great for: Those who don’t view themselves as creative people and those that feel as though they’re stuck in a rut. People having trouble finding inspiration. Anyone interested in boosting their own creativity and productivity. Readers curious about what a professionally creative person has to say on the subject.

Abby’s rating: three-and-a-half-shells

The Hoarder in You by Robin Zasio

hoarder

Originally published in: 2011

What it’s about: Dr. Robin Zasio, a consulting psychologist on A&E’s Hoarders, talks about the reasons behind hoarding and cluttering and how to overcome those tendencies and compulsions.

What made me pick it up: I felt like I needed this after I finished reading Messy by Tim Harford. I chose to the audiobook so that I could listen to it while I rounded up clutter to remove from my home.

My favorite things: Dr. Zasio introduces the idea of a hoarding continuum, ranging from keeping a tidy home to the dangerous conditions that can accompany compulsive hoarding. She explains how to identify where you fall on that continuum and offers great suggestions for improving your hoarding or cluttering tendencies. Zasio does a great job of explaining these kinds of compulsions without judgement and offering solutions that feel very attainable.

Who it’s great for: Anyone who wants to work on their clutter and organization but doesn’t know where to begin. People worried about their own need to acquire or that of a loved one.

Abby’s rating: three-and-a-half-shells