I recently discovered personal development books and they quickly became a favorite of mine. Developing a habit of reading a little from a book of this type each day has a positive effect on the direction and mood of my day, plus it tends to get me fired up and ready to take on the world.
I have made a list a mile long of books I’m dying to read and have barely made a dent, but here are my favorites so far. These personal development books have helped me overcome challenges, conquer fears, and become a better parent. I will add more as I continue to find more that I love, so feel free to check back periodically.
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#1. The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson
This book focuses on how small daily habits can have a huge impact on our lives over time. It is a great reminder that each consistent action propels us a little more forward, even if we can’t see it right away.
#2. Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert
This is a must read for anyone pursuing a creative lifestyle. When I struggle to share something personal in my writing, the magic and passion from this book give me courage. She emphasizes the importance of doing what you love, and that when we create, we don’t do it for an audience or a paycheck. We do it to find hidden treasures within ourselves and to see them come to life. In particular, I love her idea that everything has already been done, but it hasn’t been done by you.
(*disclaimer: there are some swear words in this one)
#3. The Gifts of Imperfection by Brene Brown
This book really impacted me on a personal level. Her discussions about shame vs. guilt are spot on. If you have ever needed a self-esteem boost or reality check, this is the one you need! It helped me through a really difficult time in my life and I plan to read it many more times. It is also a great personal development book for moms because many of the principals can be applied when teaching your kids as well. You really can’t go wrong with anything written by Brene Brown.
#4. I am That Girl by Alexis Jones
This is the ultimate pep talk for girls of all ages. Alexis Jones is insightful, funny, and smart. It’s like reading a book written by your best friend about you.
#5. Love and Logic Magic for Early Childhood by Jim Fay and Charles Fay, PhD
This is the most helpful parenting book for young kids that I have ever read. It provides strategies for discipline that make sense and are easy to use. When I find myself losing my cool or feeling like I don’t know what I’m doing anymore, this book helps me get back and track and speak to my kids in a way that helps them to hear me.
#6. 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman
This book is full of great ideas for communicating better with your spouse and understanding how you both give and receive love. If you’re married, you know, it definitely feels like your spouse is speaking a different language sometimes. Learn how to recognize the ways they express their love for you, and how to show them love the way they need it.
There is also a version for your kids or teens, which I find extremely helpful as well.
#7. The Child Whisperer by Carol Tuttle
Carol Tuttle breaks down personality styles into four categories, based on the type of energy children use. I found it to be really helpful in understanding why my children don’t always think the same way I do, and how to recognize when certain emotional needs aren’t being met. I am a type 4 with a strong type 2 secondary, which means my energy type is very different from the type 1’s and 3’s that I am raising. When I try to parent them as if they were mini versions of myself, we all end up exhausted, unproductive, and feeling misunderstood.
#8. Girl Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis
If you want something real and honest about what it takes to be true to yourself and reach your goals, then you need to check out Rachel Hollis. We can’t always be perfect and that’s okay, but we don’t have to sacrifice things that are important to our personal growth.
Bonus: Her new book, Girl Stop Apologizing, is also fantastic!
What are some personal development books you love, and would add to this list? Have you read any of these?