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The Best Personal Growth Books for Becoming Your Best Self

You don’t have to wait until January to change your lifestyle and habits for the better. The best personal growth books will help you become the person you envision at any time. We’ve rounded up a list of the 15 best personal growth books and best self help books to help you unlock your dreams!

personal growth books

Braving the Wilderness: The Quest for True Belonging and the Courage to Stand Alone by Brene Brown

Social scientist Brene Brown explores what it means to truly belong, especially in a society and culture that relies on outside markers of success, which can often be polarizing. By leading readers through the wilderness of self-reflection, she can help people connect to their true selves–and their communities.

Brave, Not Perfect: Fear Less, Fail More, and Live Bolder by Reshma Saujani

If you’re feeling weighed down by the ridiculous expectations of others and the impossible standards perpetuated by social media and our society, Saujani has written the book fr you. Inspired by her popular Ted talk, Saujani breaks down how girls are conditioned to be afraid, and inspires readers to be brave rather than perfect.

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

You are a badass, and Jen Sincero will make sure that you won’t forget it in this impassioned, witty, and sometimes curse word-laden manifesto on how to stop doubting yourself and live your best life. This book is full inspirational quotes and practical advice for you to change your ingrained bad habits today.

My Friend Fear: Finding Magic in the Unknown by Meera Lee Patel 

Author of the bestselling journal Start Where You Are, Patel brings readers into a deeper exploration of themselves and fear, so that they can find the courage to make important changes in their lives. With her beautiful watercolor artwork, Patel gives readers reflections, questions, and quotations to inspire them to face their fears and embrace changes.

A Year of Positive Thinking: Daily Inspiration, Widom, and Courage by Cyndie Spiegel

If you’re looking for a close guide to help you change your outlook and mindset, this book of daily affirmations if just the thing. It offers inspiration and tools based in self development and neuroscience to help you think more positively and get in the mindset to achieve your goals.

Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand in the Sun and Be Your Own Person by Shonda Rimes

Written by the trailblazing TV writer and producer, this book is about the power of challenging yourself to say yes to every unexpected thing that comes your way. Part memoir and part self-help book, Rimes chronicles how saying yes to the things that intimidated her transformed her life–and how it can transform yours, too! 

Do It Scared: Finding the Courage to Face Your Fears, Overcome Adversity, and Create a Life You Love by Ruth Soukup

If you’re dealing with a lot of fear in your life, Ruth Soukup can help. By identifying your Fear Archetype and adopting her Principles of Courage, you can begin to build the life that you want. Soukup delivers a book and a bold plan that’s inspirational, but also full of tough love.

The Self-Love Workbook: A Life-Changing Guide to Boost Self-Esteem, Recognize Your Worth and Find Genuine Happiness by Shainna Ali

Conventional wisdom says you have to know how to love yourself before you can take care of others, but if you’re stuck on figuring out how to get there, this workbook can help. With activities that will help you deepen your understanding of yourself, Ali gives you practical tools to embrace self-love.

How to Stop Feeling Like Shit: 14 Habits that Are Holding You Back from Happiness by Andrea Owen

If you like your self-help books with a side of sarcasm and a big serving of no-nonsense, this straightforward manual is for you. Owen isolated 14 habits that hold women back, and offers solutions to break those habits once and for all.

The Book of Forgiving: The Fourfold Path for Healing Ourselves and Our World by Desmond Tutu and Mpho Tutu

Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his daughter Reverend Mpho Tutu draw on their experiences working with the South African Truth and Reconciliation Council to offer a path to forgiveness and ultimate healing. By outlining practical guidelines on how to ask for and offer forgiveness and either maintain or release relationships, they give readers a healthy framework for healing through forgiveness.

The Self-Love Experiment: Fifteen Principles for Becoming More Kind, Compassionate, and Accepting of Yourself by Shannon Kaiser

If you have a tendency to self-sabotage, or feel as though you’re holding back from living your life, Kaiser makes a case that self-love can be the key to transforming your life. By sharing her own story and offering fifteen principals to help you overcome your own setbacks, she makes a strong case for self-love and offers a path to achieving your goals.

Be Fearless: 5 Principles for a Life of Breakthroughs and Purpose by Jean Case

If you want to know what makes a great leader and change maker, Case offer evidence that it isn’t wealth or power, but the courage to be fearless and take bold risks. With profiles, personal stories, and practical advice, Case presents an inspiring manifesto that anyone can take to heart.

The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz

Rooted in Toltec wisdom, the author explores various beliefs we may hold that are in fact self-limiting and harmful to achieving our dreams. Digging deep into words and belief systems, this book offers four essential pieces of advice to transform your life: keep your word, don’t take things personally, don’t make assumptions, and always try your best.

An Invitation to Self Care: Why Learning to Nurture Yourself is the Key to the Life You’ve Always Wanted by Tracey Cleantis

Often when we talk about self-care, it’s in the terms of indulgence: a massage, a fancy latte, an extravagant  purchase. Cleantis wants to reframe the discussion of self-care to move beyond these indulgences to including aspects that will help you nourish your body and mind in every area of your life, and build a lifelong practice that is more than just dessert.

The Happiness Project: Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun by Gretchen Rubin

Gretchen Rubin spent a year studying science, philosophy, and exploring real-life situations to try and understand how to be happier. Her discoveries are relatable and applicable to everyone’s lives, and include finding outer order, spending wisely, and trying new things. Part self-help, part-memoir, her story is inspirational and practical.

Find more personal growth books

If you want more suggestions for nonfiction books or your own personal reading journey, check out TBR: Tailored Book Recommendations. TBR offers readers personalized book recommendations, taking in account what they’ve already read and what they’re looking to read more of! Simply fill out a survey about your reading life, and we’ll match you up with an expert Biblioligist who will recommend three books each quarter. You can choose to receive your recommendations via email, or have three new books delivered to you from our partner bookstore. Get started now!