There are a ton of personal development or self help books out there. Some are good, some are terrible. Self help has actually become such a huge field that there are entire sections in book stores dedicated to even just the new self help stuff. So how do you tell the good stuff from the mediocre? This list will be a great starting point, as it lists and briefly reviews ten of the best personal development books out there. These books cover a wide variety of sub-genres within the personal development books genres, but all of these can help you get into the right frame of mind and on your way to personal growth.
#10 Purple Cow: Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable by Seth Godin. This one is aimed specifically at businesses, but not only is Seth Godin’s unique look good for building your own business, but the mentality of this book and great allegories can apply to your personal life, as well. Thinking differently from the majority is a skill that never hurts, especially in improving (if not outright changing) your life.
#9 The Purpose-Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here For? by Rick Warren. This one obviously has a religious Christian slant, so it may not be for everyone, for many of that faith this book has been nothing short of life changing. Some “spiritual but not religious” people have found this best seller helpful and useful, as well, since many of the lessons focus on concentrating and looking honestly at your own life and working on small steps to improve yourself that add up and help bring meaning into your life.
#8 The 4 Hour Work Week by Tim Ferris. This book is one of my personal favorites, and rates right up there near the very top of my own list. This book won’t be for everyone, but it is a great combination of focus on personal change and improvement (which directly leads to changing your life), changing your thought process, and gaining independence and freedom in the work place and life. This book works for normal employees as well as entrepreneurs, and the stories, additional resources, and challenges to conventional thinking make this a quality work helpful for anyone wanting a radical change in both their personal and business life.
#7 Write It Down Make It Happen: Knowing What You Want And Getting It by Henriette Anne Klauser. This self improvement book is specifically aimed at teaching individuals to clear their minds of all the every day distractions that make goal setting impossible. The power of clearly writing down goals, wishes, and the small steps to take to get there comes out clearly in Klauser’s book. Her techniques are intended not only to clarify goals, but to help with the self-confidence needed to accomplish them.
#6 Create Your Own Future: How to Master the 12 Critical Factors of Unlimited Success by Brian Tracy. “Create Your Own Future” is a quality self help book that combines the two goals most common with people looking for a quality self improvement text: improving the personal life, and making a lot more money. This book concentrates on twelve principles that can help you achieve both, and gives examples of actual real world plans that show you how you can accomplish these goals.
#5 Do One Thing Different: Ten Simple Ways to Change Your Life by Bill O’Hanlon. O’Hanlon has the credentials, as he is a certified professional counselor, marriage therapist, and author of 16 self-improvement books. This book is written with short easy to digest chapters, focusing on concentrating on fixing the current day instead of spending a lot of time digging up the past. This book is also divided into three parts, each based on a different part: changing the doing of the problem, changing the viewing of the problem, and applying solution-oriented therapy. This focus on changing the now instead of dwelling in the past is the breakthrough many need.
#4 Coach Yourself to Success : 101 Tips from a Personal Coach for Reaching Your Goals at Work and in Life by Talane Miedaner. One of the instant appeals of this self improvement book is that there are a large number of tips, many of them practical and allowing for instant action. It can be difficult to make a huge change of thinking in your life, while many smaller steps are so much easier to implement. This has been a favorite among many self help fans.
#3 The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change by Stephen R. Covey. It’s an older book that has been around for quite some time, but classics are classic for a reason. This book was released in 1990, and has remained in print ever since. This was a groundbreaking book when it was released and has sold over 10 million copies. This book is different in that it doesn’t give you a quick list of “easy actions” to take, but requires a deeper paradigm shift that helps you chance how you think, act, and approach problems. This is a book you will take copious notes over as you study this book in detail – this isn’t one for skimmers?
#2 Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway, by Susan Jeffers. The number one obstacle that gets in the way of people wanting to change their lives is fear. Author Susan Jeffers attacks this obstacle head on in this classic self improvement work. Jeffers bravely uses many personal examples from her own life, discussing the crippling effects that fear has on every aspect of your life, and how to work on yourself to get to the point where you can conquer it. Learning that failure is not a big deal, but that seeing chance as an opportunity to do something great (as opposed to a chance to fail) is the fundamental lesson behind this book that has helped thousands to achieve their goals and push ahead in life.
#1 Awaken the Giant Within: How to Take Immediate Control of Your Mental, Emotional, Physical and Financial Destiny! by Anthony Robbins. Tony Robbins is the absolute guru of self improvement, so it should be absolutely no surprise. It was between this one and “Unlimited Power” as to which one was best. Robbins set the standard for much of self help, and while there is some criticism about some of the advice being “fluff,” the majority of the advice is very solid, as can be seen by the sheer number of copycats. This book is a great addition to any self-help library.
Rating: 5 out of 5