Although it might sound cheesy, self-confidence comes from within. But sometimes we all need a little boost. So to help give you a nudge in the right direction, here are 10 essential books that encourage personal growth and help increase your self-belief…
1. Outliers: The Story of Success – By Malcolm Gladwell
You’ve probably heard of Gladwell’s bestseller The Tipping Point, but when it comes to achieving success and happiness, Outliers: The Story of Success “overturns conventional wisdom about genius to show us what makes an ordinary person an extreme overachiever”. The book asks questions such as, “Why do some people achieve so much more than others? Can they lie so far out of the ordinary?” It’s both an inspiring and provocative read.
Priced at £6.49 | Buy the book
2. Bounce: The Myth of Talent and the Power of Practice – By Matthew Syed
Although this book doesn’t directly address the creative industries, it applies the methods of successful sportspeople to the world of business. “If you’ve ever wondered what makes a champion, Bounce has the answer.” Author Matthew Syed is a two-time Olympian and a sports broadcaster, so is well placed to discuss the psychology behind the secrets of the top athletes.
Priced at £6.29 | Buy the book
3. Feel The Fear And Do It Anyway – By Susan Jeffers
We all have different fears. Some of us are petrified of public speaking, whilst others are filled with anxiety over managing others. Whatever it is you’re afraid of, Feel The Fear And Do It Anyway encourages readers to overcome their fears and anxieties, and develop the ability to handle any given situation.
Priced at £5.84 | Buy the book
4. The Chimp Paradox – By Prof Steve Peters
The Chimp Paradox is a ‘mind management model’ that claims it can “help you become a happy, confident, healthier and more successful person”. Author Prof Steve Peters outlines how to apply the understanding of your internal struggle to every area of your life, so you can recognise how your mind is working and as a result better manage yourself.
Priced at £9.09 | Buy the book
5. The Happiness Project – By Gretchen Rubin
This book was written after author Gretchen Rubin had the realisation that, “the days are long, but the years are short.” In response, she decided to dedicate a year to The Happiness Project. Among other things, she found that “novelty and challenge are powerful sources of happiness, that money can help buy happiness, when spent wisely, that outer order contributes to inner calm, and that the very smallest of changes can make the biggest difference.”
Priced at £5.56 | Buy the book
6. Failed it!: How to turn mistakes into ideas and other advice for successfully screwing up – By Erik Kessels
In an unusual approach to self-help, Failed It! champions the power of mistakes, illustrating how they can actually enrich the creative process, rather than hinder it. Kessels preaches the important lesson that making mistakes takes the fear out of failure and as a result we are free to experiment.
Priced at £6.95 | Buy the book
7. Happiness: A Guide to Developing Life’s Most Important Skill – By Matthieu Ricard
Although it might seem obvious that happiness is important, it’s sometimes easy to forget in the stresses of everyday life. Buddhist monk Matthieu Ricard argues that happiness is not simply an emotion, but is a skill that can be developed. He offers mind-training exercises, which will help us to focus on what’s truly important in life.
Priced from £3.16 | Buy the book
8. How To Stop Worrying And Start Living – By Dale Carnegie
This book has proven success amongst my friends and family, in a world where, unfortunately, worry is rife. Author Dale Carnegie helps reassure us that worry is nothing new, it has been conquered by thousands, and so can be conquered by us all.
Priced at £6.99 | Buy the book
9. Thinking, Fast and Slow – By Daniel Kahneman
This New York Times Bestseller by Nobel Prize-winner Daniel Kahneman encourages us to take a new approach in looking at the way our minds work. He believes we have two types of thinking: fast and slow. The book offers techniques for slower thinking to fuel better decision-making in every area of our lives.
Priced at £6.99 | Buy the book
10. If You’re So Smart, Why Aren’t You Happy?: How to turn career success into life success – By Raj Raghunathan
Can we control our own happiness? Author and psychological researcher, Raj Raghunathan, believes we can. He examines how certain psychological traits that lead to success can also block our paths to happiness. As a response Raghunathan suggests ways we can change our course to increase our levels of happiness.
Priced at £12.08 | Buy the book