Books That Will Positively Move You

Stories for Stressed Out Adults
by Lucy Mangan

Y’all, this is one to help you fall asleep at night.  Lucy Mangan has collected a bunch of soothing stories to help you decompress, from classics written by people like Oscar Wilde and Katherine Mansfield, to excerpts from childhood stories you grew up with like The Secret Garden and The Wind in the Willows, and even some poetry to round it out, so there’s bound to be something to make you feel better and bring your spirits up a little bit.

Becoming Wise: An Inquiry into the Mystery and Art of Living 
by Krista Tipper

Haven’t mastered this whole “life” thing yet? Fear not, young grasshopper. Because Peabody Award-winning and National Humanities Medalist Krista Tippett has, after having conversations about Big Questions with some of today’s most remarkable thinkers and theologians. This book consists of the most significant insights Tippett found. 

Thinking, Fast and Slow 
by Daniel Kahneman 

Want to come to grips with error and prejudice and slow down your thinking? Then this is the book for you. 

The Happiness Advantage 
by Shawn Achor 

If you’re struggling to get ahead at work, it’s first essential to consider how happy you are. This book is all about finding happiness to find success. Former Harvard University lecturer Achor uses research and case studies to explain how it’s possible to reframe your mindset to become more positive and therefore more powerful at work. 

The Gift of Forgiveness 
by Katherine Schwarzenegger Pratt 

Struggle with forgiveness and letting go of the past? In this book Schwarzenegger Pratt reflects on her own experiences of learning to forgive and asks people who have suffered everything from kidnap to losing partners following murder on how they’re living with greater acceptance… 

The Alter Ego Effect 
by Todd Herman

It’s time to feel like a child again and use imagination and fun to become a better you. In this book, Herman examines the importance of finding your Heroic Self to improve life. 

Declutter Your Mind 
by S.J. Scott and Barrie Davenport 

Negative thoughts are natural but, according to the authors of this book, should not negatively impact on life. Teaching habits, actions and mindsets to help clear the brain of overwhelming negativity, this book is essential for those who have had enough of worrying.

Speak Your Truth 
by Fearne Cotton 

Speak Your Truth dives into all the ways we learn to stay quiet for the wrong reasons, and explores how to find your voice, assert yourself and speak out with confidence

Tiny Habits: Why Sarting Small Makes Lasting Change Easy 
by BJ Fogg, PhD 

Silicon Valley expert BJ Fogg, who is a research psychologist and founder of the iconic Behaviour Design Lab at Stanford, has penned this book to teach you how to use a science-based approach to make simple but life-changing changes in your life. 

Not a Life Coach 
by James Smith 

If the pandemic has proved anything, it’s the importance of taking back control of the most important things in your life, including your wellbeing. In this book, Smith guides you through how to find fulfilment and happiness, redefine your your goals and reset your mind to find success. 

The 5am Club: Own Your Morning. Elevate Your Life.  
By Robin Sharma 

Fancy waking up at 5am before sunrise every day? Well, you might be tempted after reading this novel which is all about how to revolutionize your morning routine and improve productivity, health and mindset. 

How To Do The Work 
by Dr. Nicole LePera 

In this book, clinical psychologist Dr LePera guides readers through the latest research from science and healing modalities, and teaches you how to avoid self-sabotaging behaviors in order to recreate their lives as they want them to be. 

365 Questions, One Page per Day: A One Year Self-Discovery Journal 

Instead of looking to others for advice and wisdom, this book let you take charge. Each lined page has one question and encourages you to take pen to paper and embark on a journey of self discovery and reflection. 

Get your Sh*t Together 
by Sarah Knight 

Ignore the slightly tongue-in-cheek title for one moment, because this book will help you, once and for all, figure out how to leave your emails at the office and truly nail that work/life balance.  

If In Doubt, Wash Your Hair: A Manual for Life 
by Anya Hindmarch 

Who better to learn about leading a better, more successful and fulfilling lift than fashion designer Anya Hindmarch. As a mother-of-five and internationally renowned entrepreneur, the designer is an ideal source of inspiration who offers practical tips on how to be a better you. And yes, it can sometimes be as simple as washing your hair. 

The Chemistry of Calm: A Powerful, Drug-Free Plan to Quiet Your Fears and Overcome Your Anxiety 
by Henry Emmons MD 

Marrying Eastern techniques of meditation with traditional Western solutions of diet and exercise, celebrated psychiatrist Dr. Henry Emmons offers a proven plan to combat anxiety—without medication—that has helped tens of thousands gain inner peace and start enjoying life. 

Make it Happen: Manifest the Life of Your Dreams  
by Jordanna Levin 

In this warm and witty book, Jordanna shares her personal experiences and struggles along with her foolproof equation for manifesting whatever you desire, from your dream job to a lasting relationship. Whether you’re a matter-of-fact skeptic or a somewhat hippie yoga-lover, Make It Happen will empower you to take ownership of your life and create anything you want. 

The Strength in Our Scars 
by Bianca Sparacino 

“The Strength In Our Scars” tackles the gut-wrenching but relatable experiences of moving on, self-love, and ultimately learning to heal. In this book you will find peace, you will find a rock, you will find understanding, and you will find hope. Remember: Whatever is dark within you has also carved light into your soul. Whatever is lost within you has also brought you back home to yourself. Whatever is hurt within you is also healing you in ways you may not understand at that moment in time. 

Working Hard, Hardly Working: How to achieve more, stress less and feel fulfilled
by Grace Beverley 

In Working Hard, Hardly Working, entrepreneur and self-proclaimed ‘lazy workaholic’ Grace Beverley challenges this unrealistic and unnecessary split, and offers a fresh take on how to create your own balance, be more productive and feel fulfilled. 

Good Vibes, Good Life: How Self-Love Is the Key to Unlocking Your Greatness
by Vex King 

How can you learn to truly love yourself? How can you transform negative emotions into positive ones? Is it possible to find lasting happiness? In this book, Instagram guru Vex King answers all of these questions and more. Vex overcame adversity to become a source of hope for thousands of young people, and now draws from his personal experience and his intuitive wisdom to inspire you. 

Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life…And Maybe the World
by Admiral William H. McRaven  

 On May 17, 2014, Admiral William H. McRaven addressed the graduating class of the University of Texas at Austin on their Commencement day. Taking inspiration from the university’s slogan, “What starts here changes the world,” he shared the ten principles he learned during Navy Seal training that helped him overcome challenges not only in his training and long Naval career, but also throughout his life; and he explained how anyone can use these basic lessons to change themselves-and the world-for the better. 

The Power of Positive Energy
by Tanaaz Chubb  

Positive energy creates positive outcomes. But how do you get the good vibes going? It all comes down to understanding and embracing the innate and energetic power of your soul. With the guidance of Tanaaz Chubb, creator of ForeverConscious.com, you will begin a journey that will give rise to an understanding of your soul’s energy and its connection to the Universal energy all around us. 

The Daily Stoic: 366 Meditations for Clarity, Effectiveness, and Serenity
by Ryan Holiday 

Modern readers praise Stoic philosophy for its unique blend of practicality and wisdom. But it’s admittedly hard for the average reader to decipher the Dover Thrift edition of Marcus Aurelius’ work. The antiquated, needlessly formal language of most modern translations is stripped down in this book, revealing powerful aphorisms that cut straight to the heart of our day-to-day challenges.  

The Defining Decade 
by Meg Jay, PhD 

Our “thirty-is-the-new-twenty” culture tells us that the twentysomething years don’t matter. Some say they are an extended adolescence. Others call them an emerging adulthood. But thirty is not the new twenty. In this enlightening book, Dr. Meg Jay reveals how many twentysomethings have been caught in a swirl of hype and misinformation that has trivialized what are actually the most defining years of adulthood. 

Atomic Habits
by James Clear 

No matter your goals, Atomic Habits offers a proven framework for improving–every day. James Clear, one of the world’s leading experts on habit formation, reveals practical strategies that will teach you exactly how to form good habits, break bad ones, and master the tiny behaviors that lead to remarkable results. 

Deep Kindness
by Houston Kraft

Deep Kindness pairs anecdotes with actions that can make real change in our own lives, the lives of others, and throughout the world. Diving into the types of kindness the world needs most today, this book takes an honest look at the gap between our belief in kindness and our ability to practice it well—and shows us how to put intention into action. 

Untamed
by Glennon Doyle

Soulful and uproarious, forceful, and tender, Untamed is both an intimate memoir and a galvanizing wake-up call. It is the story of how one woman learned that a responsible mother is not one who slowly dies for her children, but one who shows them how to fully live. 

Happiness Becomes You: A Guide for Changing Your Life for Good
by Tina Turner

Happiness Becomes You is the memoir of singer Tina Turner. Described by the author as “a very personal book that focuses on the core themes of my life: hope, happiness, and faith,” it explores previously undisclosed details of Turner’s life including how she overcame severe obstacles to achieve happiness and success, and offers Turner’s advice on how readers can realize their own dreams

Think Link a Monk
by Jay Shetty

Think Like a Monk shows you how to clear the roadblocks to your potential by overcoming negative thoughts, accessing stillness, and creating true purpose. It can be challenging to apply the lessons of monks to busy lives

Joy at Work
by Marie Kondo

If you properly simplify and organize your work life once, you’ll never have to do it again.

Marie Kondo’s first book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying, sparked a new genre of publishing and became an international bestseller. Now, for the first time, you will be guided through the process of tidying up your work life.

13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do
by Amy Morin

Master your mental strength—revolutionary new strategies that work for everyone from homemakers to soldiers and teachers to CEOs. From #1 (Don’t waste time feeling sorry for yourself) to #13 (Don’t expect immediate results), this is a great guide for facing the world around you more confidently.

10% Happier
by Dan Harris

After having a nationally televised panic attack, Dan Harris knew he had to make some changes. A lifelong nonbeliever, he found himself on a bizarre adventure involving a disgraced pastor, a mysterious self-help guru, and a gaggle of brain scientists. Eventually, Harris stumbled upon an effective way to rein in that voice, something he always assumed to be either impossible or useless: meditation, a tool that research suggests can do everything from lower your blood pressure to essentially rewire your brain.

The Marshmallow Test
by Walter Mischel

A child is presented with a marshmallow and given a choice: Eat this one now, or wait and enjoy two later. What will she do? And what are the implications for her behavior later in life? The world’s leading expert on self-control, Walter Mischel has proven that the ability to delay gratification is critical for a successful life, predicting higher SAT scores, better social and cognitive functioning, a healthier lifestyle and a greater sense of self-worth. But is willpower prewired, or can it be taught?

The Power Of Letting Go
by John Purkiss

When you let go, you live intuitively. Everything flows, because you are no longer attached to things being a certain way, to being a certain person or always being right. What a relief. The irony is that when you feel stuck in any area of your life – career, relationships, purpose, health or money – letting go can seem very hard. You cling on for dear life just at the moment you need to take the leap.

Emotional Detox
by Sherianna Boyle

Wellness expert Sherianna Boyle has created the revolutionary seven-step C.L.E.A.N.S.E. method to help you rid yourself of negativity, fear, worry, anger, and doubt and guide you back toward a natural, energized state of pure joy and acceptance. Learn how to Clear your pathways, Look inward, Emit positivity, Activate, Nourish, Surrender, and Ease your way into your best self and a happier and healthier life.

The Universe Always Has A Plan
by Matt Kahn

In this powerful work, spiritual teacher and intuitive Matt Kahn explores the 10 Golden Rules for emotional freedom-divinely curated and practical to the demands of everyday life. Infused into each rule is Matt’s loving, heart-centered perspective, to help guide you through your own profound spiritual transformation.

The Power Of Mental Discipline
by Ian Tuhovsky

Imagine your life as a blank slate. You can choose what you want it to look like. Like a video game, you can fill it with whatever you like! Every area – your health, wealth, relationships, family, status – you can design them all. Close your eyes and imagine the life of your dreams…

What does your dream look like? Whatever it is, it can be yours. Every day you can live the dream.

Girl, Wash Your Face
by Rachel Hollis

In this New York Times bestseller, Rachel Hollis, founder and CEO of TheChicSite.com, identifies 20 lies people tell themselves to hold themselves back. Using her own (messy) life as a test case, she shows how to stop saying things like “I’ll start tomorrow,” or “I’m a terrible writer” to live a more joyful and productive life.

Years of Yes
by Shonda Rimes

This poignant, intimate, and hilarious memoir explores Shonda’s life before her Year of Yes—from her nerdy, book-loving childhood to her devotion to creating television characters who reflected the world she saw around her. The book chronicles her life after her Year of Yes had begun—when Shonda forced herself out of the house and onto the stage; when she learned to explore, empower, applaud, and love her truest self. Yes.

Gmorning, Gnight
by Lin-Manuel Miranda

Sometimes you don’t need a mind-changing philosophy — you just need a fast pep talk. If that’s the case, you need Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda in your corner. The book’s origins are from Twitter: He started and ended each day with little bite-size affirmation. (Example: “Do NOT get stuck in the comments section of life today.”) He offers new insights in his book, but still easy to read in short bursts.

How To Be A Bawse
by Lilly Singh

Lilly Singh, actress, comedian, and creator of her Superwoman show on YouTube, offers her advice on success and shares what she learned on her way to internet superstardom. Her tips are both conventional (things like “say what you mean”) and unconventional (“be the dumbest person” in the room — that is, learn to learn from those who are smarter than you. There’s nothing wrong with that!). 

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up
by Marie Kondo

Japanese cleaning consultant Marie Kondo takes tidying to a whole new level, promising that if you properly simplify and organize your home once, you’ll never have to do it again. Most methods advocate a room-by-room or little-by-little approach, which doom you to pick away at your piles of stuff forever. With detailed guidance for determining which items in your house “spark joy” (and which don’t), this international bestseller will help you clear your clutter and enjoy the unique magic of a tidy home—and the calm, motivated mindset it can inspire.

Outer Order, Inner Calm
by Gretchen Rubin

With 150 concrete clutter-clearing ideas, insights, strategies, and sometimes surprising tips, Gretchen tackles the key challenges of creating outer order by explaining how to ‘make choices’, ‘create order’, ‘know yourself’, ‘cultivate useful habits’ and, of course, how to ‘add beauty’. At home, at work, and in life, when we get our possessions under control, we can create a more serene environment. With a sense of fun, and a clear idea of what’s realistic for most people, Gretchen suggests dozens of manageable steps to help us achieve the lives we yearn for.

Presence
by Amy Cuddy

Everybody has moments when the jitters get the best of us. Amy Cuddy, Harvard Business School professor and social psychologist, shows how to get the best of those stressful situations without doing a lot of life-changing and soul-searching. Instead, she delves into research about how things like body language, posture, and other mind-body techniques can banish the butterflies from our stomachs.

Lightly
by Francine Jay

Getting a handle on your stuff is one thing, but what about shedding your life of your worries? Francine Jay talks about dumping the burden of more than just objects, going minimalist with respect to purchases, yes, but also stress and emotional baggage.

How Not To Die
by Michael Greger, MD

Nutritionist Michael Greger, M.D., delves into the 15 leading causes of death in this country, and then prescribes foods to eat and avoid if you’re at risk for those conditions. He also includes a checklist of 12 items we should all eat every day if we want to live forever. Or, at least as long as we can!

Deep Work
by Cal Newport

In this multitasking, Twitter-checking world, we’ve lost the art of sitting down and really concentrating. Cal Newport, Ph.D., a professor at Georgetown, outlines the benefit of really tuning out all distractions, and gives four rules to help re-wire yourself so you can deeply focus again. (Check now: How many browser tabs do you have open?)

Principles
by Ray Dalio

The book’s hundreds of practical lessons, which are built around his cornerstones of “radical truth” and “radical transparency,” include Dalio laying out the most effective ways for individuals and organizations to make decisions, approach challenges, and build strong teams. He also describes the innovative tools the firm uses to bring an idea meritocracy to life, such as creating “baseball cards” for all employees that distill their strengths and weaknesses, and employing computerized decision-making systems to make believability-weighted decisions.

The Little Book of Hygge
by Meik Wikiing

You’ve probably heard of the cozy Danish philosophy of hygge, but what exactly is it again, apart from being, well, cozy? And how do you achieve it at home in your chaotic, not-all-that-cozy life? Meik Wiking demystifies it all, showing how light, food and drink, and togetherness can make for a happier home.

Big Magic
by Elizabeth Gilbert

Elizabeth Gilbert is best known for writing Eat, Pray, Love, but you don’t have to go on a globe-spanning, pasta-binging trip to derive insights from her life. In this book, she delves into her own creative process, and explains how enchantment, permission, persistence, trust, and divinity can help people create, whether its writing a book or making art.

The Miracle Morning
by Hal Elrod

Hal Elrod is a published author, speaker, ultra-marathoner, podcast host, and cancer survivor, so you know he’s got more than a few achievements under his belt. Elrod swears he has the key to making mornings — and, therefore, lives — happier and more productive. But most outrageous of all: He says it only takes six minutes a day. In his book, he gives a blueprint to his morning ritual — including what to do if you like to snooze.

Rich Dad, Poor Dad
by Robert Kiyosaki

The book uses the contrast between two characters, “poor dad” and “rich dad,” to teach various financial principles. The primary takeaway is that those who aren’t good with their money and have less are that way because they work for money, whereas those who are good with their money amass more of it because they learn how to make money work for them. They’re generalities, but the lessons taught are no less valuable. If you want to improve your ability to manage your finances, Rich Dad, Poor Dad is the perfect package of enlightening knowledge and actionable instruction.

What to Say When You Talk to Yourself
by Dr. Shad Helmstetter

Each of us is programmed from birth on, and as much as 75% or more of our programming may be negative or working against us. Here, we learn how to erase and replace past mental programs with healthy, new programs that can be positively life-changing. Considered by many to be one of the most important and helpful personal growth books ever written.

Whatcha Gonna Do With That Duck? And Other Provocations
by Seth Godin

Getting your ducks in a row is a fine thing to do. But deciding what you are going to do with that duck is a far more important issue. Known for the daily burst of insight he provides every morning, rain or shine, via Seth’s Blog, the author wants us to stand up and do something remarkable, outside the standards of the industrial system that raised us.

Fooled By Randomness
by Nassim Nicholas Teleb

Set against the backdrop of the most conspicuous forum in which luck is mistaken for skill, the world of trading, this book is a captivating insight into one of the least understood factors of all our lives. In an entertaining narrative style, the author succeeds in tackling three major intellectual issues: the problem of induction, the survivorship biases, and our genetic unfitness to the modern word. Taleb uses stories and anecdotes to illustrate our overestimation of causality and the heuristics that make us view the world as far more explainable than it actually is.

Eat That Frog
by Brian Tracy

There’s an old saying that if the first thing you do each morning is eat a live frog, you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing you’re done with the worst thing you’ll have to do all day. There just isn’t enough time for everything on our to-do list – and there never will be. Successful people don’t try to do everything. They eat their frogs. For Tracy, eating a frog is a metaphor for tackling your most challenging task.