On my 28th birthday (back in January) I never would have expected Khloe Kardashian’s latest memoir Strong Looks Better Naked to be my favourite gift. Of course, this was given to me by my mother, because who else really knows you better? Not to mention, she got me a hard cover.
As I continuously watch Keeping up with the Kardashians each Sunday of every season on E!, I’m very aware that some people hate these famous, iconic women (Kim especially). Even my own father makes fun of me for watching when he hears their shrill voices and contagiously-silly laughter beaming out of the TV speakers. But I don’t care. For whatever reason, maybe because I have female cousins who I’m extremely close with or my big Italian family is very much like their Armenian American one, I can’t help but feel connected to their life events and shenanigans.
When I heard Khloe Kardashian was releasing a memoir, I couldn’t wait to read it. It could’ve been all the trashy news about her divorce with Lamar (along with his near-death experience) and my curiosity, but Khloe has always been one of my favourites from that clan. Just like all those other memoirs Meagan and I have read (Yes Please! – Amy Poehler; Not that kind of Girl – Lena Dunham; and Is Everyone Hanging out without Me? – Mindy Kaling), I was surprised at my own reactions and feelings towards Khloe’s book. When I opened up the book that birthday morning, I noticed the titles of each part. They are: Part 1 Body, Part 2 Mind, and Part 3 Heart. Little did I know this wasn’t just a memoir, but instead, a self-help book.
Khloe goes in-depth about the years following her divorce with Lamar, which relates back to her depression, sadness and immature behaviour (acting out) after the death of her father, Bobby Kardashian. Looking back, Khloe is aware that she didn’t know how to handle her overwhelming loss(es), and she takes full responsibility for her immature actions in the past. Relying on partying and drinking to cope, her lifestyle changes are something she more than highlights. She is an advocate for being healthy (mind and body). She goes into great detail about her gym routine(s) and healthy eating choices. Making the conscious decision to be pro-active, eating right and maintaining exercise routines that she actually enjoys. Recipes of her favourite home-cooked meals are also included. Along with cocktails she makes at home – making her new spin off Cocktails with Khloe make a whole lot more sense.
The part that stood out the most, though, was closer to the end of the novel. Part 3 Heart. One of the chapters, titled Mindfulness, couldn’t have come at a better time for me. I had been experiencing a lot of anxiety, panic and over-thinking at the end of last year and going into this year (2016). To the point where I couldn’t just focus on the here and now. To my surprise, this is connected to being more mindful. Living in the present and not fixating on the past or worrying about the future – is a key part of mindfulness.
For some people it’s hard to appreciate the present moment, and I had become one of those people. My A-Type personality didn’t help, but through reading Khloe’s memoir I realized that you have to coax your brain into coming back and focusing on the present. This can be done by concentrating on your touch, sound and smell in any given moment. By being quiet, breathing regularly and letting your body acknolwedge that you’re safe – is another technique. Just absorbing everything that’s happening in the now. This was the biggest takeaway for me. Along with the encouragement from Khloe that going to the gym should be a daily-lifestyle change not a task on your to-do-list. If going to the gym or working out is just something you’re checking off your list, you’ll lose your focus as well as motivation. It’s important to keep in mind how great you feel even after only 20 minutes of exercise.
With plenty of personal anecdotes, positivity quotes and explanations of her own little life lessons, this book is a definite must read for anyone who is trying to reflect on their own life. I would like to think that she actually wrote this memoir. I know ghost writers exist, and she probably had most of the book transcribed, but I can’t see her publishing something that wasn’t accurate or not true to her word.
Unopposed to the overall self-help theme, I settled into reading, and I’m glad that I did. I took some hard-learned lessons along with me, and hey, there are some pretty tasty recipes in there.
“My goal is to be happy. I know there will be periods of happiness and periods of unhappiness, and like it or not, I will have to live with both. But, my goal is to live a rich, interesting, productive, generous, kind, mindful life full of love.” – Khloe Kardashian