A common characteristic of the most successful people is that they read every day! They say reading is to the mind as exercise is to the body and I totally believe that! It keeps our minds stimulated and helps us expand our horizons, inspiring us to better ourselves each and every day! There are a lot of really great books out there, so I have compiled a list of my top ten favorite success and happiness books that have really impacted my life and are sure to impact yours!!
*This post contains affiliate links, which means if you click on the links provided and buy something, I may receive a small commission at absolutely no extra cost to you. I will never tell you about anything I don’t love and all opinions are completely my own. Thank you for supporting me and helping me support my family through my blog!*
1. The Millionaire Next Door – Thomas Stanley
I listened to The Millionaire Next Door on audiotape as I drove to and from BYU every day during my senior year of college. I loved listening to it in little pieces at a time because it gave me a chance to absorb all the great advice the book has to offer! It goes into great detail to describe the 7 common traits among the wealthiest people in the world. It is all about being smart with your money and teaches that you don’t have to have a super high paying job to be rich! It was extremely thought provoking and led Zach and I to creating the budget and financial plan we have in place right now. I highly recommend it for a smart financial future!
2. Rich Dad Poor Dad- Robert T. Kiyosaki
This book is definitely a favorite in my family! It’s all about defying the myth that you need to make a bunch of money to be rich and explains the difference between working for money and having your money work for you! It’s teachings are awesome and definitely ones to think about for a financially successful life.
3. What I Wish I knew When I Was 20 – Tina Seelig
I was introduced to this book in my first entrepreneurship course at BYU and I instantly fell in love with it! It’s basically a compilation of thoughts and ideas from a successful businesswoman who is now a Stanford Professor. She humbly and humorously tells us stories about her life, relays pieces of what she teaches her classes, and gives poignant advice on how to defy the impossible, overcome failure, and create success. Business ideas are all around us, we just have to figure out what problems people face in life and figure out a marketable solution. Seriously go read this book!
4. The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership- John Maxwell
Of course I have to give John a shout out because I love him and his work! I love this book! I even ran two mastermind groups about it a few years back, and they turned out to be extremely inspiring because all these laws are so spot on! The 21 laws are all qualities of a great leader, and John shares personal stories and those of other amazing leaders who utilize these 21 characteristics to lift and inspire people throughout the world. He even provides personal assessments to help you on your own leadership journey. Be sure to check this one out!
5. The 5 Levels of Leadership – John Maxwell
Another great book by John Maxwell is the 5 Levels of Leadership, which goes into great detail to explain the difference between poor leaders (those who are leaders just because of their title) and great leaders (those who are leaders because they love people and people love them back). Reading this book really helped me understand how to be a positive leader in the world and how to help OTHERS become leaders themselves. Great Read!
6. The How of Happiness – Sonja Lyubomirsky
Some of my most enlightening insights on positivity have come from the book,“The How Of Happiness”. As a distinguished professor at the University of California Riverside, Lyubomirsky is devoted to studying human happiness- How cool is that?! She initially observed some people’s ability to thrive despite great adversity and challenge, while oppositely, some people fail to be happy no matter how good their life may seem. This led her to start studying happiness the way she does today. Many of us believe we are victim to our life circumstances and we are either happy or we are not. We let ourselves think life is just the way it is and there is nothing we can do about it. Through her research, Lyubomirsky has debunked these myths and others by discovering how much of our happiness level we can control and how much we can’t. Read more in the book and on my blog!
7. Flow - Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
I was introduced to the concept of Flow in my favorite positive psychology class at BYU. This concept is so important that I repeatedly learned about it throughout my Recreation Management Major courses. In this book, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi teaches us how to experience flow, a feeling of deep enjoyment, creativity, and total involvement with life. Learning how to experience flow can greatly improve our happiness and overall life satisfaction!
8. Leadership and Self Deception – The Arbinger Institute
Oh man this book is so great!! I wrote a whole post about it here. It teaches about the importance of treating people as people and not as obstacles, and how we can learn to overcome self deception to better our relationships. It really helped me understand how to improve my interactions and overall relationships with my family and friends, and its principles can also be applied to the business world too!
9. Authentic Happiness – Martin Seligman
Dr. Martin Seligman, father of positive psychology, gives us theories based on scientific studies on how to use our core strengths to find success and happiness in life! It is a seriously eye opening book, and comes complete with tests and assessments to help us find our own core strengths, so we can use them to create a happy life.
10. Left To Tell – Immaculee Ilibagiza
While this book isn’t quite a “how to” text, it tells an amazingly inspiring story that changed the way I think about my life. Immaculee tells her story of surviving the Rwandan holocaust huddled in a tiny bathroom with seven other women for 91 days. During this horrendous experience she learned the meaning of true God – like love and forgiveness and how to create a happy life. Despite her trial, she now leads and extremely fulfilled life and invites us all to overcome fear and negativity and be joyful instead. You have to read this!!! I pretty much cried the whole time - I promise it’s so good!
Good luck choosing which one to read first!! Of course I love all of them, so maybe choose one for each month or something! Let me know what you think of them and what your favorite books are in the comments below!
Also, you can read these books on Audible and get your first two books for free right now!! Be sure to check this amazing offer out, so you can listen to these great reads anywhere!
See ya next post!
- Holly B.