If you have known me for awhile, you know that I am an avid book reader. I always have been and thankfully, my kids seem to be bookworms too. A great family day out for us is a trip to the bookstore, where we can read and peruse books for hours. When people ask me how I stay so sane when I have little time to myself, I tell them I read. Funny, but true!
Over the last couple years, I have gravitated towards non fiction books and I believe that has been a large source of my inspiration and growth as a business owner. I not only read business and leadership books, but I read inspirational books and personal development books. I do have an Audible membership that I use often, but there is something about having a book in your hand and underlining and taking notes in it. Yes, I write in most of my books and I am so glad I started. It helps my mind retain the information with clarity, and organize it. I used to be a collector of information, but I never really put what I learned into practice. Now, I choose books based on what I need in my life, and I take notes and make an effort to put that knowledge into practice. I truly believe I am a better wife, mother, friend and business owner because of what and how I read.
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I thought I would share some of my favorite personal growth books with you, in hopes that it may inspire you to start on a journey to become the best version of yourself.
The Gifts of Imperfection – Brene Brown
The subtitle of this book is ‘Let Go Of Who You Think You’re Supposed to be and Embrace Who You Are.’ Yes, the title says it all and I can tell you this book was amazing. I held off for awhile on reading this book because I figured I already knew who I was. It’s funny, those books that you think you don’t need are usually the ones that will make the biggest impact. I learned that I do care what people think, and I do tend to put on a face to hide my imperfections. Brene gives ten guideposts to take us on a journey- one that involves our hearts, minds and soul. Read it, really.
The Miracle Morning – Hal Elrod
I learned about this book in one of my coach trainings and it has been life changing. Honestly. I tell everyone about this book. If you struggle with time management, productivity, priorities, inspiration…read this book. Hal emphasizes the importance of getting up early- very early. He teaches us to take the first hour of each day and set the day up for success. This book will help you learn how to wake up each day with more energy, motivation and focus on taking your life to the next level. Hal also has a Facebook group for those putting his advice into practice here.
The Compound Effect – Darren Hardy
The Compound Effect is based on the principle that decisions shape your destiny. Little, everyday decisions will either take you to the life you desire or to disaster by default. We often think we need to take drastic measures to change our life, our circumstances, our finances etc. In this book, Darren explains that it is those small things you do day after day that add up to those life changing moments.
Big Magic – Elizabeth Gilbert
Elizabeth has been a best selling author for years. In this book, she offers insights into the mysterious nature of inspiration. She asks us to embrace our curiosity and let go of needless suffering. She shows us how to tackle what we most love, and how to face down what we most fear. She discusses the attitudes, approaches, and habits we need in order to live our most creative lives.
The Success Principles – Jack Canfield
A friend recommended this book to me about ten years ago and I never finished the whole thing. I was still in the…I don’t really need to change anything about me phase. Jack Canfield is the creator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series. In this book, he helps you get from where you are to where you want to be, teaching you how to increase your confidence, tackle daily challenges, live with passion and purpose, and realize all your ambitions – whether in business or in your personal life. He gives 64 timeless principles to show you exactly what to do.
The Magic of Thinking Big – David Schwartz
This was another book recommended to me in a coach training, but it is for so much more than business. I would recommend this book to anyone. Dr. Schwartz presents a carefully designed program for getting the most out of your job, your marriage and family life, and your community. He proves that you don’t need to be an intellectual or have innate talent to attain great success and satisfaction—but you do need to learn and understand the habit of thinking and behaving in ways that will get you there.
The Circle Maker – Mark Batterson
The subtitle of this book is ‘Praying Circles around your Biggest Dreams and Greatest Fears.’ This book…eye opening for me. God cares about our dreams and He will answer. When we pray small prayers and dream small dreams, God doesn’t get glorified. It’s those big, scary dreams where God gets to show off his work. It’s time you learned from the legend of Honi the Circle Maker―a man bold enough to draw a circle in the sand and not budge from inside it until God answered his prayers for his people.
How to Stop Worrying and Start Living – Dale Carnegie
In our fast paced world, we hear more and more people suffering with anxiety and depression. In his best selling book, Dale offers practical formulas you can put into practice today to overcome your worry habit. He shows you how to reduce your business and financial worries, but also how to embrace who you are and live with happiness.
You Are A Badass – Jen Sincero
You may be living under a rock if you haven’t heard of this book! Taken from the back of the book – “YOU ARE A BADASS IS THE SELF-HELP BOOK FOR PEOPLE WHO DESPERATELY WANT TO IMPROVE THEIR LIVES BUT DON’T WANT TO GET BUSTED DOING IT.” Jen Sincero is hilarious and raw and tells you how it is. I again (sensing a theme?) thought I wouldn’t get anything out of this book and I was totally wrong. I laughed, I cried and I nodded along with her as I read her words. She shows you how to create a life you totally love, and how to create it NOW.
15 Invaluable Laws of Growth – John C. Maxwell
I can’t possibly give you a list of personal growth books without the personal growth book, right? John C. Maxwell is one of my favorite authors, especially his leadership books. However, this book is for everyone – business woman or not. He shows the importance of becoming a lifelong learner and why we need to constantly work on ourselves. This is a book you will want to work through slowly, so you can implement each law. And then, you’ll want to reference it again and again. It’s that good.
And there you have it – my top book recommendations to help you reach your potential. I promise you that even if you only read a few of theses this year, your life will be forever changed. One of the best gifts I have given my family is my love for personal growth. I would love to hear about your favorite personal growth books!