Over a decade ago when I started my own healing journey, I was a bit of a self-help addict. I felt broken, beyond help. Even so, I read countless books searching for answers to the questions floating around in my head: Would I ever be enough? Could I really heal? I wanted a magic pill/book/guru to come save me from myself. One day a friend said to me, "When are you going to stop? When are you just going to listen to your own wisdom and heal yourself?" It had never occurred to me that I could do that. Heal myself? Was that even possible? I only wish I had had a book like this back then. Rather than seeking validation and help from external sources, in The Art of Talking to Yourself, Vironika encourages us to tap into the fountain of our own inner wisdom. She teaches us to listen, and more importantly, to trust ourselves as our own gurus.
The world is full of “experts” who are willing to tell you exactly what to do and how to live your life to find happiness, succeed in business, or almost anything else where you have a desire but don’t know how to go about achieving what you want in life. “Just follow my 5-step process,” “the step-by-step way to get what you want,” “the secret to succeeding at” almost anything is waiting for you at any bookstore, or online where all sorts of “experts” are willing to enroll you in their programs that promise success and fulfillment if you will just adopt their proprietary system.
The Art of Talking to Yourself is NOT a book in this genre of “expert” answers to all your questions. In fact, Viktoria Tugaleva states, right from the beginning, that she is not an expert, but a fellow traveller on the road to seeking wisdom and insight, not one who is there to sell you answers, but one to help you to ask questions. If you want easy answers, this is not your book. But if you want honest counsel, you’ve come to the right place.
There are no easy answers, Tugaleva writes, but there are honest questions. And the answers are not out there, but inside yourself. The key is to ask yourself the questions and listen to your own soul to find the path of self-knowledge and wisdom. This book is refreshing in its honesty and forthrightness. It won’t lead you down a garden path only to leave you disappointed when the “answers” don’t lead to the promised success and happiness, but it will point you to the one place where the meaning you’ve been seeking resides––in yourself.
If you want real meaning in your life, you will need to create it. If you want to really know yourself, you will need to embark on a journey of self-discovery. In The Art of Talking to Yourself, Vironika Tuvaleva stands ready to help you start that journey and walk alongside you as a guide––not an expert, but a fellow seeker––to share with you what she has learned in her years of walking down this path. The journey is well worth taking.
This is a anti-self-help-book that is truly a self-help book at its loving core. Author Vironika Tugaleva does everything in her considerable power to turn you towards the answers that lie within you. As Vironika writes, “The purpose of this book, more so than to provide tricks and tips, is to encourage you to travel with your eyes open, your heart courageous, and your mind always ready to learn.”
Author Tugaleva alerts us to the many traps of abdicating our own best answers, and the pitfalls of relinquishing our power to other, even well-meaning, voices eager to tell us how to live our lives. As she writes, only we, ourselves, can travel that journey to The Self. This is a much-needed truth! Nonetheless, we can still be grateful for the helping hands and inspiring words we find on our journeys. Vironika Tugaleva is one such guiding spirit that is destined to help many people along the way: a truly generous leader on the path to the self, and a writer of immense talent.
This book strikes a great balance between giving you guidance and allowing you the space to discover your own ability to find the path on this life journey that suits you.
It's refreshing to read a book that doesn't tell you what's wrong with you or how to fix yourself. Instead, Vironika uses her own incredible journey with readers to serve as an example of how someone can go inward for the answers that serve them best.
If you're through with experts telling you how to do what they did to be successful or to be happy, this book is a great resource. You are guided to a point, but then you are given permission to seek answers from yourself.
Compassion, happiness, and joy are always within our reach, but the journey there is a very individual and experiential one. This book provides you with a fresh and helpful perspective on realizing the best of you in your own way. Nicely done, Vironika!
It is scary to pick up a self-help book. You never know what it's selling you on. You learn things but you never have the oportunity to feel self-confident, to make your own decisions, to trust the answers you already have inside that no one has ever paid attention to.
That's why this is not a self-help book. Like Vironika says, it belongs to a different section that doesn't exist and that could be called "Self-Discovery". It sounds way better, right?
I had the opportunity to read it last summer from a draft and got hooked. I am so used to people telling me all day long what I should do and think that the tone and attitude of someone who genuinely was interested in my opinion (as far as a book can go) shocked me.
That and her honesty. Tha author tells us how she's fallen for the tricks of marketing, the rules of others, the methods and the magic bullets, to end up more confused, lost and frustrated. This book is a guide you have to experiment if you really want change. This book won't change your life, you will.
After reading it I've slowly loose a knot I had for decades. Listening inside more, making mistakes and coming back to my inner compass a bit more faster every time. I've been doing yoga and meditation for some years now, the subject is familiar. But I have to admit that I was missing some details and I doubted myself so much I was an easy target for the guru or the expert of the moment.
Today I can say this book guided me to trust myself, giving me certainty in what I was suspecting inside but never had the courage to show up. I hadn't cross a finish line because that's not how life works, neither human beings. We are ever changing creatures, extraordinary and full of possibilities. So believing there is a magic solution that will make me into other person is losing all. My life is an adventure to discover everyday a little more of who am I instead of pushing me into some mould or covering up what's not required or valued in the latest trend.
This book is an opportunity to remember what we knew when we got here. That we are already enough. That we have all we need. That the most marvellous trip won't find us in a movie or a book, not even this one.
I'm all for healing and personal development. I've read numerous books over the years that promise magic formulas and unrealistic(sometimes drastic!) ways to attain happiness and success. This is NOT one of those books. And I'm so glad it isn't! Its raw and real. This is a book which invites you to look within and find the Light within. Vironika guides you to become a beautifully healed version of yourself all through self mastery and loving self talk. She gently teaches you to tap into your own inner wisdom, your light which doesn't require another expensive course to attain happiness and peace. Her take on this whole self help business is so refreshing, I wanted to hug her for her honesty and pure spirit. A MUST read for anyone who wants to get real, get raw and get truly healed.....minus the exorbitant self help costs!
I found “The Art of Talking to Yourself,” both fascinating and useful.
In my review of it, I make liberal use of quotes from the book. In my opinion the book speaks best for itself.
Self-help usually means finding someone to teach you skills, either via a class, workshop, magazine, book, or online—to help you with their techniques or by example. And often paying a lot for it. In the beginning of the book, this idea is examined: "The warning I want to give is not about self-help but consumerism." This is paradoxical.
"Part of my task is to leave you with some firewood and show you some pathways to find more. But my ultimate task is to encourage you to seek and find your own paths. I do not hope to show you the most sustainable way to gather kindling for the blaze inside your soul. More than anything, I want to show you the beauty of fire and awaken you to your inner urge—the same urge I found within me—to keep that fire burning."
I love the liberal and skilled use of metaphors to make the difficult become obvious.
"We are encouraged to begin the inner dialogue—to become best friends with the one person we will be with our whole life: ourselves."
These are some of the concepts dealt with: self-compassion, self-trust, awareness of one’s true self, being curious instead of judgmental, flexibility in the face of constant change, examination, observation, questioning, responsibility towards self.
"Of all the questions we ask ourselves from day to day, perhaps the most important is 'What does this mean?' This simple query is a catalyst between reality and our perception of it."
"To keep hold of reality, we must welcome and embrace its paradoxes. With inner balance, you can live a fuller life instead of only playing one small part in it."
The descriptions of process revolve around the inner communication as if the different parts of oneself were having a conversation. This is done very cleverly.
"You will forge your path as you walk it. The more you experience this, the more you will see how useless, and even dangerous, this book can be. And the more you realize how much this book can never do, the more you will come to appreciate the small purpose it can serve: to show you the warmth of your inner fire and inspire you to keep it kindled."
The author’s first book, ‘The Love Mindset’, has been pivotal in the way in which i have chosen to change for the better the way in which i experience my life. It was after reading ‘The Love Mindset’, and its truly remarkable influence upon me, that i have since found myself supporting Vironika’s work. Vironika’s own modesty and authenticity means that she does not have vast corporate resources at her disposal - so my being able to support her journey as well as my own is a remarkably humbling experience, and is due to Vironika’s conspicuous online presence and her exceptional accessibility.
I feel that this is where Vironika differs from many self-help ‘experts’ or ‘gurus’. Basically - and as Vironika herself freely admits in her introduction to ‘The Art Of Talking To Yourself’ - she is definitely NOT one of those self-help experts or gurus. She is as flawed and vulnerable as any human being, and i feel that this is what makes her exceptional. As she says in ‘The Art Of Talking To Yourself’, she does not have answers. Instead, she has a refreshing honesty and vulnerability, and a pragmatic curiosity about life. She does not bestow this upon the reader from a lofty height; instead she shares her own thoughts and experiences, so inviting comparison, encouraging the reader to feel their own wonderment and to make sense of their own lives. Vironika does not say, “This works - so you do it too”; rather, she says, “This works for me - see what comes up if you want to try it.”
I like the idea Vironika shares in ‘The Art Of Talking To Yourself’ that she does not offer self-help - she offers self-discovery. I like that. To me this does not make me, as somebody who follows her work, into a Vironika clone; but instead it encourages me to seek to be my authentic self, which is a theme that consistently runs through the book.
I was fortunate enough to be able to support Vironika with an early draft of this book. Although i had already previously been pleasantly struck by her narrative style and use of metaphor in ‘The Love Mindset’, i was unprepared for the advancement of her stylistic excellence and metaphor in ‘The Art Of Talking To Yourself’. In this, her second book, her narrative style has clearly refined and elaborated. In ‘The Art Of Talking To Yourself’ she frequently uses metaphors which relate to anybody’s everyday experiences - there is nothing lofty or pretentious about the writing style in this book. Some other (‘self-help’) authors i have read write with a kind of superiority and prescriptiveness which makes their readers (perhaps intentionally) feel small and dependent and ashamed, no doubt with the (however unconscious) aim of making that readership dependent spiritually, psychologically and financially upon the author’s apparent expertise. Instead, i get the impression from ‘The Art Of Talking To Yourself’ that Vironika would be happiest if everybody on the planet discovered their authentic selves and lived accordingly. As she says, then she would just do something else. Simple as.
One of the main things i derived from my reading of ‘The Art Of Talking To Yourself’ is, as I mentioned earlier, indeed the importance of self-discovery instead of self-help (i think self-help implies a measure of dependency upon a body of expert knowledge and largesse). Perhaps self-discovery leads to a psychological and spiritual emancipation, which is instead of the sort of dependency fostered by self-help. I found the chapter on balance in particular to have a great deal of resonance, perhaps because i was reminded of important aspects of my own life such as equanimity, and mindfulness, and self-compassion. This is a good thing, because it places the author’s work firmly within a tradition of spiritual and psychological comprehension - simply put, better living. As somebody who has been plagued for much of my life by negative self-talk, I felt myself connect profoundly with the author’s discussion in the chapter called ‘The Great Balancing Act’ of the notion of balance within one’s experience, and her overall message of why balance in experience is not only desirable but achievable. Vironika offers realistic and mundane (mundane in the sense of everyday and ordinary) metaphors throughout ‘The Art Of Talking To Yourself’ to which i felt i could relate very easily. One doesn’t have to already have a degree in linguistics or philosophy in order to ‘get’ this book. And that is a remarkable, and in my experience exceptional, thing in the area of self-help (or should i say self-discovery). It is definitely something to be applauded.
There is nothing speculative in or about this book. It is grounded not only in human experience, but most importantly in the author’s own experience. And her often excoriating honesty about her own experience gave a welcome resonance with my own. I heartily recommend this book, and i hope that it offers as valuable and life-changing an insight into a unique and enormously underrated approach to the self, as it has given to me.