Recently, some girlfriends & I got together, and it wasn’t long before the conversation shifted to the direction our lives are going and the many changes we have undergone.
While each of us is at a different stage of our self-discovery journeys, it’s incredibly uplifting and inspiring to hear the stories of others. You can learn so much!
You can also learn so much from people you don’t know – those special folks who have braved taking pen to paper to share their wisdom through books. Books allow you to take your wellness and growth into your own hands (literally!) and you may even find yourself admiring these authors’ experiences like you do your friends.
When it comes to Books for Personal Growth & Transformation let me tell you: I have recs! Read on for some of my faves!
Benefits of Books for Personal Growth & Transformation
Depending on who you speak to, you may have heard that books on personal growth & transformation are overrated, cliche, or futile.
I could not disagree more!
Humans crave shared connection & there is a lot of power in reading about another human’s experience. All authors have their own stories and interpretations to keep learning. Many also include stories of several different people in their books. You really get to experience a range of differences!
It is especially gratifying when you read something that hits home on something you’ve personally struggled with.
Books on personal growth & transformation can guide you with tangible strategies, advice, and inspiration on discovering new things about yourself and guide you on this confusing, oftentimes overwhelming, path you’re on.
A daily diet of inspiring words can help you uncover (or re-discover) how badass you are – helping you become stronger, happier, and increasingly well-rounded. When you believe you can be more, you’re pulled to do so.
It doesn’t hurt that reading is a fantastic habit to welcome into your life. Regular reading has been linked to increased confidence, improved problem solving, memory and concentration.
Reading can be relaxing too, making it a great pre-bed activity. I would know…I often wake up with my Kindle still on the bed!
Plus, reading at night has the special benefit of putting an idea into your mind right before it starts churning up dreams to process your day.
My Book Recommendations for Personal Growth & Transformation
Going to the bookstore can be overwhelming – seeing thousands of self-help titles, all claiming to be the last one you’ll ever need.
But you don’t need to start there!
Below is a curated list of some of the most profound, impactful, and helpful ones that I’ve read.
Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action by Simon Sinek – This book is brilliant if you are looking to find a deeper purpose in your career.
The 4-Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss – Though I do not actually have a 4-hour workweek (But you won’t catch me complaining – I actually like what I do! ;), this book had me questioning everything about what work, life, balance, and freedom mean to me.
Real Love by Sharon Salzberg – This is a special one. Using Buddhist practices and mindfulness, this book takes you on a love journey extravaganza from self-love, and connection, to uncovering what ‘real love’ is to you. I seriously love this book so much that every client gets a copy after they book their boudoir session with me.
The Bhagavad Gita: A Guide to Navigating the Battle of Life by Ravi Ravindra – This is my personal favorite translation with commentary on one of yoga’s primary texts – the Bhagavad Gita. I find it to be extremely relevant to modern life and how you can act for good in the world without being consumed by the world.
Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Carol Dweck – I’ve read this one more recently and it definitely deserves its spot on this list. It guides readers to redefine success, improve their resilience and focus on building a growth mindset vs a fixed mindset. Honestly, you can just read the first big chapter and get the idea. Then you can read the extra chapters on growth mindset in parenting, sports, coaching, and other niches.
Get Curious About Your Unique Self-Discovery Journey
While on my self-discovery journey and through reading the above books, what helped was a consistent practice of introspection and silence.
These books are full of useful prompts and practices that you can try yourself! I’ve worked through them with journaling, voice memos, yoga & meditation, and therapy to discover who I really am. If you are keen to start with new journal prompts today, check out my blog 30 Journal Prompts For Self-care!
Of course, we are all going to have different approaches. It will heavily depend on many things including upbringing, religion, culture, and processing styles.
As with other self-improvement practices, the right book for you should be in line with your goals. This means the first step is to identify your goals. One way to do this is to make a list, starting with the sentence, “I want to learn to be more/less/better at __________.”
Then, get digging! Use your personal connections with loved ones to forge conversation for recommendations or speak to your therapist, or even a librarian or shopkeeper!
Who or what has impacted you the most on your self-discovery journey?