10 Self Development books for a better life

Legacy Network

25 Jun, 2024

When I was a novice reader, I used to be very pretentious. I would only pick up Dostoevsky and Kafka, and walk proud with the ‘reader’ tag my friends gave me. Looking down upon the self development books genre was normal because those books went mainstream as soon as they got launched. And if you know anything about wannabe cool intellectual people, you know they hate mainstream things.

But then, I grew up.

We should not ignore self development books because they influence our thoughts about ourselves and society. The self help book industry is worth $11 billion globally.

Self-improvement is essential for human nature as it is connected to self-knowledge, mastery, and transformation.

Self development books hold within their pages an abundant source of wisdom and inspiration.

Self help books can help us improve ourselves as individuals. They can enhance our competitive spirit and also guide us in ethics. These books can direct us towards projects, others, and our communities.

Here are 10 most impactful Self development books to read and apply in your life:

1. Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy by David D Burns

Feeling Good by David Burns is a contemporary and practical interpretation of Stoicism based on cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). It stresses the link between our ideas and emotions and provides practical ways for combating negative thinking. A simple review for this book is that it acts like a guide to the good life.

2. Meditations by Marcus Aurelius

Marcus Aurelius believed that our reactions to external circumstances generate pain. And that we should focus on managing our minds rather than worrying about things beyond our control. The secret to living a happy life is to adjust our expectations. This is one of the best personal development books you can ever pick up to learn living in the present moment.

3. Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu

The Tao Te Ching promotes spiritual self-cultivation through letting go and accepting the natural order of things. It promotes surrendering to the cosmic forces and letting go of attachments to desires and expectations. By embracing a simpler and more authentic way of life, we can improve ourselves.

Wu wei, or non-action, is a key concept characterized by acceptance and absence of selfish desires.

4. The Happiness Trap by Russ Harris (2007)

We should not try to control unpleasant thoughts or uncomfortable sensations in acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT). Instead, we should accept and let them go to free up energy for value-based action.

5 The Body Keeps the Score — Bessel van der Kolk

Bessel van der Kolk analyzes the influence of previous emotions on us and how to overcome them. Our minds and bodies retain these memories, wreaking havoc on our lives. “The Body Keeps the Score” provides practical advice for letting go of the past and living more fulfilled lives.

6. Atomic Habits by James Clear

Clear’s book “Atomic Habits” illustrates how knowing our minds’ workings is critical for modifying them. Unlike other self-development books, this best-seller stimulates and inspires readers, demonstrating how to improve their daily lives.

Readers may construct lifestyles they truly appreciate by understanding about how our brains establish both positive and harmful habits.

7. The Discomfort Zone — Farrah Storr

Farrah Storr’s book teaches us to embrace discomfort to grow. By facing challenges head on, we can achieve great things. Challenges are important for personal growth and this book encourages readers to not be afraid of them. That’s all what the most successful people do, they seek challenges and put in deep work to be the best.

Speaking of challenges, there’s something awesome we’ve got for you. And no, we are not going to suggest a book about some subtle art of something.

We are going to tell you about Legacy Academy, a popular platform to learn personal and professional growth skills via gamified learning. It is a more evolved way of self help. Explore Legacy Academy and you’ve taken the first step to a new and improved you.

8. Grit by Angela Duckworth

Psychologist Angela Duckworth claims that grit is more important than talent. Consistently improving and maintaining passion are key. Gritty people learn from mistakes and live more coherent lives.

9. How to Fail — Elizabeth Day

Elizabeth Day explains that failure is part of success. Understanding why we fail makes us stronger. It is an important part of our growth as individuals. Sometimes, going wrong can be wonderful.

10. Why Has Nobody Told Me This Before? — Dr Julie Smith

Dr. Julie Smith, a clinical psychologist, gained fame on social media by providing practical insights and advice to improve mental health.

The book aims to educate readers about how our brains work, build resilience, and improve mental health. It’s a great starting point for those seeking light bulb moments and practical advice.

What would the world be if there were no self help books for us? I’ll tell you, the world would be a more misdirected place. Because of the credible authors who gave us their wisdom, we enjoy a clearer path of life.

In that spirit, we encourage you to pick up any of these books, or better yet, all of them.