Expand Your Mind: 4 Captivating Non-Fiction Books for Self-Education


Written by Amanda Longhenry

In a world brimming with information, it's essential to curate our reading list carefully, seeking books that not only educate but also captivate our minds. In this post, we present you with four compelling non-fiction books that will not only expand your knowledge but also ignite your curiosity. From science to psychology and personal development, these thought-provoking reads are sure to enrich your understanding of the world and nourish your thirst for learning. 

Why We Sleep by Matthew Walker

Why We Sleep by Matthew Walker is a compelling book that explores the importance of sleep for our overall health and well-being. Despite our society's admiration for those who sacrifice sleep to work, he presents compelling evidence to emphasize the significance of adequate rest and the dangers of sleep deprivation. Specifically, he warns that sufficient sleep is crucial for maintaining a healthy immune system, regulating hormones, and preventing various health issues such as obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and even certain types of cancer. Walker writes in another section how the use of electronic devices before bed and exposure to artificial light can disrupt our sleep-wake cycle, shining light on how our technology has further affects on our mental health. In addition to cautioning us about the perils, he offers practical guidance on achieving a more peaceful and rejuvenating sleep.

The Myth of Normal by Gabor Maté and Daniel Maté

The Myth of Normal is a 2022 nonfiction book by Gabor Maté and Daniel Maté that explores “the relationship between individual psychological trauma and society” and argues that “society is toxic in ways that are taken for granted, instilling unexamined traumas in all of its participants,” (enotes). Specifically, the book argues that in society, children are often encouraged to abandon their true selves in favor of adopting more socially acceptable personas which leads to a multitude of problems such as addiction, depression, and more. The Myth of Normal ultimately encourages readers to question their own definitions of normalcy and challenge the prevailing judgments and stigmas associated with those who don't conform. By doing so, the authors argue, we can create a more accepting and supportive society that values individuality and promotes mental health and well-being for all.

Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman

Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman explores the systems that drive human decision-making: System 1 and System 2. System 1 operates automatically, quickly, and intuitively, while System 2 is slower, deliberate, and analytical. 

Daniel Kahneman discusses how System 1, our intuitive and automatic thinking system, is susceptible to cognitive biases and heuristics that can result in judgment errors. These biases encompass the availability heuristic, where we rely on easily accessible examples, the representativeness heuristic, which involves making judgments based on stereotypes, and the anchoring effect, where our decisions are influenced by initial information. 

System 2, on the other hand, requires effortful mental activity and is responsible for logical reasoning and critical thinking. However, it is often lazy and easily overwhelmed, leading people to rely on the simpler and more automatic System 1.

Overall, "Thinking, Fast and Slow" provides a comprehensive overview of the flaws and limitations in human thinking processes. It highlights the importance of being aware of our cognitive biases and encourages readers to engage in more deliberate and reflective thinking to make better decisions.

A Brief Welcome to the Universe: A Pocket-Sized Tour by Neil deGreasse Tyson

Neil deGrasse Tyson is an American astrophysicist, author, and science communicator and is known for his ability to popularize complex scientific concepts and make them accessible to the general public. Tyson published his book A Brief Welcome to the Universe: A Pocket-Sized Tour in hopes to introduce readers to the wonders of space in a compact format. Tyson takes readers on a thrilling journey through the cosmos, presenting complex concepts in a digestible and engaging manner.

The book covers a wide range of topics, starting with the origins of the universe, the Big Bang, and the formation of galaxies. Tyson delves into the structure of stars and planets, discussing the processes that govern their birth, evolution, and eventual demise. He also delves into the fascinating world of black holes, explaining their enigmatic nature and the immense gravitational forces they possess. 

A Brief Welcome to the Universe: A Pocket-Sized Tour is a great introduction to outer-space exploration for the average person, specifically those who are already interested in astronomy. 

Reading a variety of non-fiction may spark your true passions. TUEX Education is here to help you succeed in any and all of these subjects.