Self-Improvement Books: Find One That Speaks to You

With a new year, many of us begin to think about our goals and priorities. Where do we want to be personally, professionally or financially? Self-improvement books come in many formats. When you look for one, think about what kind of personal growth you’re looking for and what styles appeal to you most.

To get you started, here’s a list of some classic and popular self-improvement books.

Personal and Professional Development

How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie

This classic book has been a staple since its publication in 1936. Carnegie provides concrete advice on how to work well with others and cultivate influence without alienating people.

Eat That Frog! by Brian Tracy

Feel like you can never check off everything on your to-do list? Tracy helps you figure out what really needs to be on that list and where to begin. This book is time management boot camp.

The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg

The Pulitzer Prize-winning business reporter shares success stories from a range of industries. He also examines the science behind our habits — and the science behind breaking them. If you’re feeling in a rut, this book may help you move forward.

Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell

Gladwell is a journalist known for his explorations of sociology. In this book, he distills success stories into advice you can act on. Gladwell often takes a unique look at how we act. You might also want to check out his book Blink on how we form first impressions, or David and Goliath to understand why you should never count out the underdog.

You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life by Jen Sincero

In this one, the success coach provides easy tips to help you recognize your talents and overcome your feelings, while incorporating humor (and just a touch of swearing).

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo

You’ve probably already heard about this book. It teaches you how to rethink your relationship with stuff and kill the clutter in your home for good. Best of all, having a neat, organized life at home may help inspire you to be more orderly and methodical in other areas of your life.

Outside the Norm

If you are looking for something a little quirkier, look no more. Here are three off-beat selections that look at things differently.

The Innovator’s Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail by Clayton M. Christensen

You may not see this as a traditional self-improvement book, but at it’s core, it encourages creative, non-traditional thinking. Understanding how great firms get disrupted can help you break the cycle of doing things the way they’ve always been done and find new solutions.

Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things by Jenny Lawson

Lawson shares her struggles with severe depression in this humorous memoir. Depression affects millions of Americans, and, sometimes, it helps to hear about another person’s struggles (and triumphs).

Super You: Release Your Inner Superhero by Emily V. Gordon

Psychiatrist turned comedian turned Sundance darling Emily V. Gordon uses the stories of superheroes to guide readers towards self-improvement. Along the way, she shares her own complicated relationship with feelings. This book can help you better understand your emotions and how to cope with them. Chock full of exercises and tips, this is a fun and interactive way to find the path towards your best life.

This is a small sampling of the vast array of self-improvement books available. Give a couple of these a whirl and keep an eye out for advice books and memoirs that speak to your own personal experiences.

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