The Best Personal Growth Books for Becoming Your Best Self

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Always books. Never boring.

You don’t have to wait until January to change your lifestyle and habits for the better, but it’s as good a time as any! 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!

Braving the Wilderness by Brené Brown

Social scientist Brené 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 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 for 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 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 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 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 cover

Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes

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 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 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 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 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 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 15 principles 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 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.

An Invitation to Self Care 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 by Gretchen Rubin book cover

The Happiness Project 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 only via email, or have three new books delivered to you from our partner bookstore. Get started now!