24 Motivational books to read in cafes, on the sofa and on trains
Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs is just as valid today as it was when he first published his theories in 1943. According to his theory, the highest need any human can experience is the need for self-actualization. When mankind still struggled for survival this need had to be ignored because priorities were different.
Today, millions of people are secure, well-fed, and safe. They are in a position to aspire to grow as individuals, discover meaning in their lives, and be more successful. Thousands of books aiming at helping the reader to become a better person, to become self-fulfilled, and to experience the joy of living have been published. We list some of the best motivational books for inspiration in this post without a specific order.
Motivational Books That Will Inspire You
1. The Diary of a Young Girl – Anne Frank
The Diary of a Young Girl should be on the reading list of anyone that needs to be reminded of just how human courage and sheer determination can help you to endure even the most horrible situation and make the very best of every small opportunity.
2. The Story of My Life – Helen Keller
The Story of My Life should be compulsory reading for everybody. Author Helen Keller refused to accept being locked up in the dark and silent prison of her body. Instead, with extraordinary courage, she triumphed over her disabilities. You, too, will want to follow her sterling example and start to see your difficulties as opportunities.
3. The Shack – William Paul Young
The Shack, written by William Paul Young is an extraordinary work that wrestles with the question: “Where is God in a world so filled with unspeakable pain?” Mack, the main character, discovers answers that will astound you and force you to rethink everything you previously believed.
4. The Happiness Project – Gretchen Rubin
The Happiness Project: Or Why I Spend A Year Trying To Sing In The Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, And Generally have More Fun is Gretchen Rubin’s compelling story of how she decided to spend a year focusing on becoming happier. You will be surprised to learn the many unlikely sources of happiness she found during that one year of experimentation!
5. The Alchemist – Paulo Coelho
The Alchemist is Paulo Coelho’s extraordinary story of a young shepherd boy, Santiago, and his amazing journey in search of treasure. As Santiago eventually found, you too will realize that true treasure lies within and that your dreams have the power to utterly transform you.
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6. The Art of Happiness – Dalai Lama XIV
In this treasure of a book the spiritual leader of Tibet and winner of the Nobel Prize tells you that the whole purpose of life is to be happy. The question is how to achieve that state of happiness. Through anecdotes, stories and meditations he leads you to discover how to achieve fulfillment and profound happiness.
7. Oh, The Places You’ll Go! – Dr. Seuss
Oh, the Places You’ll Go! is aimed at all ages. It will inspire you to get up and go – to take life by the horns and to move mountains.
8. Letters from a Stoic – Lucius Annaeus Seneca
The author, Lucius Annaeus Seneca, was a Roman philosopher. In this book, a selection of his letters show how he manages to uphold the ethics of Stoicism. It clearly teaches how to overcome life’s setbacks and how to face challenges with bravery and resolve.
Motivational Books That Will Help You To Grow As A Person
9. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People – Stephen Covey
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change remains one of the most influential motivational books ever published. Author Stephen Covey argues that anyone can develop new habits that will not only make you a better person but also a much more successful one.
10. The Life of the Mind – Hannah Arendt
In this authoritative work, Hannah Arendt focuses on three key elements: Thinking, Willing and Judging. She exhaustively explains the way in which we process information. She convincingly argues that it is an inability to think properly that is holding us back.
11. Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-free Productivity – David Allan
David Allan firmly believes that your personal productivity is directly proportional to your ability to relax. This is a highly practical book with numerous tips and techniques on how to relax, clear the mind and achieve more in the process.
12. The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here for? – Rick Warren
This New York Times bestseller is a practical guide through a forty-day spiritual journey towards finding the answer to life’s number one question: What am I on Earth for? It is a powerful motivational book that has been endorsed by numerous prominent leaders and athletes.
13. Discover Your Strength – Marcus Buckingham, Donald O. Clifton
Now, Discover Your Strength (Marcus Buckingham and Donald O. Clifton) uses data obtained from studying more than 2 million high achievers to teach you how to discover your strengths and talents. It goes on to teach you how to develop those talents and strengths to become a high achiever yourself.
14. Emotional Intelligence – Travis Bradberry
This definitive work on emotional intelligence (EQ) will help you to identify your own EQ skills and to develop them into strengths. When you purchase this book you also get access to an online Emotional Intelligence Appraisal which will help you to start developing your EQ immediately.
15. Change Your Brain, Change Your Life – Daniel G. Amen
Change Your Brain, Change Your Life: The Breakthrough Program for Conquering Anxiety, Depression, Obsessiveness, Anger and Impulsiveness. Well, the title really says it all, doesn’t it? Author Daniel G. Amen is a qualified neuropsychiatrist and this book is full of practical tips and tricks to help you change your life.
16. Get Yourself from Crisis to Coping – Mark Elder
Get Yourself from Crisis to Coping: Your Instant Emotional Toolbox. Depression, anxiety, fear and loneliness is rampant in modern society. In this excellent book, the author Mark Elder provides advice on how to overcome these negative feelings and emotions and on how to help loved ones in similar circumstances.
Motivational Books That Will Help You Grow Professionally
17. The Greatest Salesman in the World – Og Mandino
The Greatest Salesman in the World remains one of the most popular and best motivational books ever published. In it, he encourages you to live life to the fullest and to firmly believe in your ability to help others. The book has been hailed as one of the most helpful works available to salespeople, but then, everyone is in sales. You too!
18. The Success Principles – Jack Canfield
The Success Principles: How to get from where you are to where you want to be. Jack Canfield, the author of the best-selling Chicken Soup for the Soul series, shows how anyone can follow a very simple set of rules to achieve success beyond their wildest dreams.
19. Maximum Achievement: Strategies and Skills – Brian Tracy
Maximum Achievement: Strategies and Skills that will Unlock Your Hidden Powers to Succeed. Brian Tracy is recognized as one of the world’s leading authorities on success and achievement. In this motivational book, he shows you how to use proven principles to develop better self-esteem and to enjoy a much higher level of professional success. In fact, the book can be described as a step-by-step blueprint for success.
20. 10 Secrets of the New Rich – Kevin J. Donaldson
10 Secrets of the New Rich: How to Join the World’s New Breed of Millionaires. The author, Kevin J. Donaldson should know a secret or two about becoming rich: he is one of the top 10% earners in the nation himself! In this practical guide, he discusses ten vital principles that can help anyone to become not only financially independent but truly rich.
21. Becoming a True Champion: Achieving Athletic Excellence
Becoming a True Champion: Achieving Athletic Excellence from the Inside Out. In this work, the authors (Kirk Mango and D.E. Lamont) address aspiring athletics superstars. The book touches on sensitive issues such as illegal drugs and the many dangers and challenges faced by professional athletes. They go on to show athletes how to develop those qualities that they must have in order to become superstars.
22. How to Network, Even if You are as Shy as I was – Dan Hollander
Dan Hollander wrote a real gem of a book aimed at shy people that nevertheless cannot achieve maximum results without extensive networking. There are numerous tips and tricks on how to conquer shyness and how to effectively network with others.
23. Break Free from Corporate by Gavin Sequeira
Break Free from Corporate: Be Your Own Boss. Gavin Sequeira will certainly challenge all your preconceived ideas on how to achieve success. It contains a lot of very practical advice on how to become your own boss, how to avoid pitfalls and how to surround yourself with other successful entrepreneurs.
24. No Fears, No Excuses – Larry Smith
No Fears, No Excuses: What You Need to Do to Have A Great Career. In this no-nonsense book, Professor Smith examines and dismisses all the fears, worries and excuses people commonly use when they fail to find direction in life. This book is aimed at college students who struggle to make decisions on their career paths.
Best Motivational Books 2023 – Summary
Wrapping up our list of the best motivational books in 2023. No human being has ever achieved his full potential. Each and every one of us has ample room for personal, spiritual, intellectual and professional growth. Motivational books have helped many thousands of people to change their lives for the better. You, too, can change your life!
Best Motivational Books 2023
- The Diary of a Young Girl – Anne Frank
- The Story of My Life – Helen Keller
- The Shack – William Paul Young
- The Happiness Project – Gretchen Rubin
- The Alchemist – Paulo Coelho
- The Art of Happiness – Dalai Lama XIV
- Oh, The Places You’ll Go! – Dr. Seuss
- The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People – Stephen Covey
- Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-free Productivity – David Allan
- Discover Your Strength – Marcus Buckingham, Donald O. Clifton
What are the best motivational books in your opinion? Please join or start a discussion below. If you wish to learn and read faster here is also a tutorial about speed reading techniques.
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