Book Lover ~ Tegan Brooke
Hi, I’m Tegan! I’m a twenty something living in QLD and I’m obsessed with dogs, reading, quirky puzzles, finding my next comfy outfit and home décor. My cultural background is Yugoslavian / Croatian / Australian and one of my goals is to travel to Croatia. My weekdays are spent supporting people with higher needs and I’m so lucky to be able to say that my job brings me a lot of joy. I also live a super active and healthy lifestyle but I’m all about #balance (any kind of baked good is my weakness).
Seeing other people be their best, true selves and helping others reach their full potential despite what challenges they may have overcome or are still going through. I have huge respect for people that put themselves out there and show up regardless of who might be watching.
Can you talk us through a challenge you overcame and how you managed it?
My biggest challenge was overcoming my fear to start my Instagram page ‘The Shelf Edit’. I was so worried about what people might think, what they would say and if anyone would even be interested in hearing what I wanted to talk about. I have some amazing people around me that supported me from day 1, and continue to be my biggest fans who encouraged me to go for it and I haven’t looked back. I still have moments of self doubt but I’m really proud of how far I’ve come and the inner work I’ve put in to get to a place where I now wholeheartedly believe that what anyone thinks or says is really none of my business (good or bad!) and gained the courage to go after what I want no matter how wild or unreachable it may seem at the start.
What inspired you to start the shelf edit?
I’ve been an avid reader for as long as I remember! Some of my earliest memories are going to the library and shops to pick out a new book, I would speed through them so fast I’m sure this was a weekly occurrence! I went through a period during my adult life where I barely read, or would only buy a new book when released by my favourite authors (Pauline Simmons and Jodi Picoult at the time) because I had no idea where to go for book recommendations. I started The Shelf Edit to share my thoughts on the books I was reading and to help others to find recs, it’s since turned into so much more than I could have imaged and I’m definitely never short on books to read!!
If you could give your younger self any advice, what would it be?
Stop focussing on what other people are doing, be yourself and forge your own path. Take care of your mental health and go to therapy. Let go of the stress and worry because everything is going to unfold just as it should.
What are your top 5 favourite books?
This is so tough!! These are five firm favourites:
- Normal People by Sally Rooney (the show is also fab!)
- The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
- The Color Purple by Alice Walker
- A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara
- All The Ugly and Wonderful Things by Brynn Greenwood.
What does self care mean and look like for you?
Selfcare for me looks like meditating daily (this has been hard for me in the past but I’m determined to stick with it and currently on a 15 day streak which is my longest ever), journaling, daily exercise, ordering uber eats, investing in a good skin care routine and spending time outdoors and with friends.
What advice would you give people who find reading books intimidating or challenging?
Don’t be afraid to try out new genres (I had no idea how much I loved crime and psychological thrillers) or abandon books you aren’t loving or invested in. Most of the time I’ll know if a book is for me or not within the first few pages so keep trying until you find it. You can also start small by allocating 30 minutes to an hour a day, or reading during your lunch break instead of scrolling!
Something that made you smile recently...
Already ticking off two goals that I’d set for myself this year!
Follow Tegan on instagram @theshelf_edit for all things books, puzzles, self care, home styles & aesthetics! You won't be disappointed!