Staples to My Personal Development Library
Self development books are not everybody’s cup of tea. While some people actually prefer a nonfiction read, others avoid the nonfiction shelves like the plague.
For myself, nonfiction books were not my choice of reading material. A few years ago, My mentor said to me, “Kristine, if you could get a sliver of a millionaire’s mind and see how they think, isn’t that worth spending the time to read their book?” I’m sure you can guess what my answer was. Being the big reader I am, I wasn’t going to back away from that challenge.
If you don’t want to take the advice from my mentor, medium.com says that “reading books are highly correlated with building wealth and success.” The wealthiest people spend lots of time reading. To create wealth and success in my own life I was going to take up this habit too.
And you know what? The more and more I read nonfiction, the more I find them taking up shelf space on my personal library. And I love it!
Any author, whether writing nonfiction or fiction, is conveying their ideas and research onto paper for others.
If you are not where you want to be in life, books can spark ideas, give you new insights, put a smile on your face, and perk up your mood. They can shift the way you think! They can give you a new lens to see the world from a different perspective.
Plus, it is suggested you read a book everyday. Even if I spend the minimum of a few minutes reading a chapter out of a self development book, I’d have to have quite a selection of books on hand. That is why I always have a few that stay in my own library so I can pick them up whenever I need.
So without further delay, here they are – my staple nonfiction books that are in my personal development library:
The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy
As I mentioned on my book review of The Compound Effect, this book is AMAZING. I haven’t read any other book that is better for someone who is trying to kick a bad habit, start a new habit, or change their life in any way. It is not about making a drastic change in your life but rather small choices that will result in achieving your goals.
Description: From the publisher of SUCCESS magazine comes a New York Times bestseller. The Compound Effect is “the principle of reaping huge rewards from a series of small, smart choices.” Modest choices or habits will greatly change anything. Everybody knows you can’t buy success; hard work, discipline, and consistent patterns can.
You can purchase The Compound Effect on Amazon here.
How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
The ways to “win friends” are pretty basic and common knowledge (ex: really listen when others talk, talk about the other person instead of yourself, etc) but Dale Carnegie includes good examples of these “ways” in action. How to Win Friends and Influence People is also filled with ways to influence people to be on your side with little to no tension such as to begin with appreciation. Who doesn’t want to win friends and influence people? I know I do.
Description: Dale Carnegie’s first book is a timeless bestseller, packed with rock-solid advice that has carried thousands of now famous people up the ladder of success in their business and personal lives. Learn the six ways to make people like you, the twelve ways to win people to your way of thinking, and the nine ways to change people without arousing resentment.
You can purchase How To Win Friends and Influence People on Amazon here.
21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership by John Maxwell
When I hear the word ‘leadership’ I think of John Maxwell. In 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, Maxwell dives into what is needed for leadership. Whether leading a small sports team, medium congregation, or the world’s military, you can see these laws in motion. When I read any other leadership book or hear about a great leader, I can relate what that person did to one or more of Maxwell’s laws. This is the book I’d recommend to anybody looking to start a foundation of leadership. It is also great for established leaders looking enhance their effectiveness or mentor future leaders.
Description: John C. Maxwell has combined insights learned from his thirty-plus years of leadership successes and mistakes with observations from the worlds of business, politics, sports, religion, and military conflict. The result is a revealing study of leadership delivered as only a communicator like Maxwell can.
You can purchase 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership on Amazon here.
7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephan R. Covey
7 Habits of Highly Effective People is about how to manage your personal and professional life to get things done and projects underway. My favorite part is deciphering the difference between important, urgent, not important, and not urgent. So many people are running around claiming that they are “so busy” like they should earn a metal for it. This book helps you to understand which tasks should be prioritized before others so you are more – that is right – more effective.
Covey also explains how to create win-win situations, how to begin with the end in mind, and how to seek to understand, then to be understood. These concepts helped immensely in my life and it will in yours too.
Description: In The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, author Stephen R. Covey presents a holistic, integrated, principle-centered approach for solving personal and professional problems. With penetrating insights and pointed anecdotes, Covey reveals a step-by-step pathway for living with fairness, integrity, service, and human dignity — principles that give us the security to adapt to change and the wisdom and power to take advantage of the opportunities that change creates.
You can purchase The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People on Amazon here.
The Magic of Thinking Big by David J. Schwartz
In my blog review on The Magic of Thinking Big, I talk about how this book explains the importance of our thoughts and self-imposed limitations. For those who find themselves in negative self-talk, suffer from procrastination, or those who are having trouble getting over a hurdle in their job or life, this book can give them their self-belief back.
The Magic of Thinking Big is one book I could read over and over again.
Description: The Magic of Thinking Big gives you useful methods, not empty promises. Dr. Schwartz presents a carefully designed program for getting the most out of your job, your marriage and family life, and your community. He proves that you don’t need to be an intellectual or have innate talent to attain great success and satisfaction, but you do need to learn and understand the habit of thinking and behaving in ways that will get you there.
You can purchase The Magic of Thinking Big on Amazon here.
365 Thank Yous by John Kralik
In my blog post, I rave about John Kralik’s story. I was deeply inspired and moved after finishing 365 Thank Yous. If you’re looking for a book to see the positive in life or are struggling with gratitude, this book is for you. I thought I was a generally grateful person, but after reading I found even more things to be thankful for. Told in a touching story…this is a happy read.
There are many books teaching and preaching about gratitude but 365 Thank Yous touched me more than any other.
Description: In December, John finds himself at an all-time low in his life with no hope in sight; his law business is losing money, his son and daughter are drifting away, and his girlfriend broke up with him, just to name a few. It was at this time he got the idea to, instead of focusing on what is wrong, focus on being grateful for what is going right. This memoir is a touching story of what happened when he made a goal to send 365 thank-you notes that year.
You can purchase 365 Thank Yous on Amazon here.
Who Moved My Cheese by Dr Spencer Johnson
The title and cover are somewhat deceiving. Yes, it is a book about ‘moving’ cheese and a group of mice. But it is more than that. The overarching metaphor in Who Moved My Cheese is for getting across the importance of changing and always being prepared for the change. You can read about it more in depth in my book review here.
Description: Written by Spencer Johnson, this enlightening and amusing story illustrates the vital importance of being able to deal with unexpected change. Who Moved My Cheese? is often distributed by managers to employees as a motivational tool, but the lessons it teaches can benefit literally anyone, young or old, rich or poor, looking for less stress and more success in every aspect of work and life.
You can purchase Who Moved My Cheese? on Amazon here.
Introvert Entrepreneur by Beth Buelow
LOVE LOVE LOVE this book. Although the word ‘introvert’ is being more publicized, I believe not many people really understand what it means to be an introvert. As Beth Buelow explains, the business and entrepreneurial world is set in a highly extroverted world. As a result many introverts think or are told they can’t make it as their own boss or as a highly successful executive. With the advice inside Introvert Entrepreneur, I was given ways to embrace my inner introvert in the business environment.
Description: Think you have to be loud and brash to be successful in business? Think again. The strengths and traits of the typical introvert lend themselves well to entrepreneurship, as well as “intrapreneurship” and a range of business roles. Filled with fresh insights and actionable advice, this essential guide will support anyone who’s striving to make a difference in a loud and chaotic world.
You can purchase Introvert Entrepreneur on Amazon here.
How I Raised Myself From Failure To Success In Selling by Frank Bettger
Sales jobs are a nightmare for most people. Told in story form of Frank Bettger’s experience in his sales job, How I Raised Myself From Failure To Success In Selling gives readers inspiration and steps to take in their own sales job.
Even though I don’t carry around the title of a “salesman,” I, along with everyone else, have to sell something everyday. This book is packed with ways Frank Bettger used that we can easily implement in our own lives for whatever it is we are selling.
Description: Filled with instructive examples and step-by-step guidelines on how to develop the style, spirit, and techniques of a first-rate salesperson, How I Raised Myself From Failure to Success in Selling serves as an inspiration to anyone in the business of selling.
You can purchase How I Raised Myself From Failure to Success in Selling on Amazon here.
The Secrets For Getting Things Done by Vincert Harris
Have you ever heard the complaint of not having enough time in the day? This is my favorite book on time saving and time management. You can’t manage time but you can be strategic with the time you have. Who doesn’t want to get more done?
This book is broken up in 1-4 page chapters, each with its own tip for getting things done. I constantly use the tip of “6 things” and “20 minute timer.” Whenever I feel overwhelmed, I refresh myself with some tips from this book and I feel like I can breathe again!
Description: Secrets for Getting Things Done is chock full of useful and innovative strategies that will help you take your productivity to the next level. When you apply the strategies in this book, you’ll find that getting things done is not only easier, and much faster, but that you enjoy the process as well.
You can purchase Secrets for Getting Things Done on Amazon here.
There You Have It
There You Have It: My 10 Books that will always be on my personal development bookshelf.