If you’ve ever been encouraged to try out an old high school classmate’s pyramid scheme via Facebook messenger at 11 p.m. on a Wednesday night, it’s likely that you’re familiar with the feeling that a bad or cheesy self-help book can evoke. Many self-help books promise to completely alter your life through a series of often simultaneously specific and generic things. Unless you’re really taken with the book’s ideas, you are probably too busy rolling your eyes every time the author says “stop worrying and start living” to truly pay attention to what sort of advice is being handed down. While there is surely a plethora of cheesy self-help books, there are also quite a few that could actually improve your life, sans eye roll.
Though it was originally published in 1936, “How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Carnegie is still one of the most popular self-help books. The book, which includes a number of principles designed to help people like you and understand your way of thinking, and how to encourage change in others, can benefit your professional and personal life. Essentially, “How to Win Friends and Influence People” breaks down how exactly to communicate with others in order to get what you want, per Insider.
“How to Sort Your F***ing Life Out” contains exactly what its title suggests — simple but effective evidence-based solutions for a myriad of problems in your life. This book is for those who only read books that get straight to the point and do so as quickly as possible.
Give these unconventional self-help books a chance
If you’re the sort of person who desires concrete examples of what personal and professional success looks like, perhaps “Outliers: The Story of Success” is the self-help book for you. Written by Malcolm Gladwell, the book highlights successful people, like Bill Gates and members of The Beatles, and how they achieved success, per Insider. If you’d rather learn how to apply the successes of others to your own life, an autobiography that doubles as a self-help book could also prove to be an enjoyable read. “Untamed” by Glennon Doyle is a perfect example of this autobiography-self-help-book hybrid. In the book, Doyle describes how trusting her inner voice and ignoring others’ unfair expectations led to her leaving her unhappy marriage behind and marrying her current spouse, Abby Wambach.
There are also multiple options for those who don’t have the patience to sit down and read a 400-page book. “Self-Love Workbook for Women: Release Self-Doubt, Build Self-Compassion, and Embrace Who You Are” by therapist Megan Logan will teach you how to become a more grounded and confident woman through a series of exercises, according to Elle. “365 Questions, One Page Per Day: A One Year Self-Discovery Journal” is perfect for those busy folks who still want to embark on a journey of self-discovery at slower pace.
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