There are thousands of books out on the self-help shelves that tell you how to become a certain type of person. From how to be a better team player to how to be a better partner to your spouse, many are designed to change the person that you are into someone better suited for other people. But what about becoming a better person for yourself? What about taking a step back to take in who you are and what you want and finding ways to achieve that…for yourself?
We’ve gathered seven books that do just that. Take a look at the curated list below to find the help and strength you need to recognize that your betterment should be based on what you want out of your life and not the opinions of those around you.
The Life Brief: A Playbook for No-Regrets Living by Bonnie Wan
Bonnie Wan is a life strategist dedicated to helping you lean into the process that will help you develop the skills to become the creator and author of your future. The Life Brief is a tool for “anyone ready to rise above the noise, break from their limiting stories, harness their inner agency and unlock their purpose and power, and turn possibility into reality.”
Wan helps you ask the questions that you might shy away from or fear an answer to, but also how to embrace the answers and make the changes you need to be the best version of yourself. Utilize her three-phase process to go from uncertain messiness to clarity of thought and, finally, actively achieving one’s goals. At the end of it all, you can look back and say, I did it for me, and I have no regrets.
Seek: How Curiosity Can Transform Your Life and Change the World by Scott Shigeoka
Seek is a revolutionary betterment tool that is designed to brighten and enlighten. By utilizing Shigeoka’s DIVE model to remove biases and assumptions, change the social mindset you might not realize you have, understand the value of you and those around you, and embrace the lows amid the highs, your life will slowly change for the better. Curiosity is at the heart of seeking a better tomorrow and a better you. Acknowledging that curiosity and understanding are the basis of change, you’re sure to achieve any goal you set for yourself and those around you.
“Curiosity is not about asking questions alone; it’s a mindset that involves exploration, play, and setting boundaries to protect oneself when curiosity is not reciprocated.”
Resolutions are easily broken, especially as they require a habit to be established and reinforced. If you lack an understanding of how habits are created and broken, how are setting new yearly goals ever to be accomplished? Atomic Habits is the curation of scientifically proven research on that very topic. Don’t let the science deter you, though; Clear is a writer known for taking complex information and recreating it into digestible and easily followed prose. His book breaks down the information and helps you create and break habits using daily tasks that are hard to forget.
“Conventional wisdom holds that motivation is the key to habit change. Maybe if you really wanted it, you’d actually do it. But the truth is, our real motivation is to be lazy and to do what is convenient. And despite what the latest productivity best seller will tell you, this is a smart strategy, not a dumb one.”
To be a woman with ADHD is to know that your version is unlike that of a man, so much so that research is lacking, and most go without being diagnosed. Tracy Otsuka understands the hard life women with ADHD struggle through and has come up with ways to help cope and turn what one might consider a weakness into a strength. Otsuka understands and is here to empathize and strategize: “The thing about #ADHD is that it’s actually great. I love the way my brain works. I’m funny and flexible and creative and adventurous. My frustrations mostly stem from trying to force my ADHD brain to function in a non-ADHD world.”
From hyper-fixation to anxiety, sleep deprivation, and everything in between, Osuka uses witty banter and personal anecdotes to help you see that you’re not alone and there is nothing wrong with you. Your brain is a powerhouse, you are a badass, and it is time to embrace yourself.
Taking time for oneself is not a negative, selfish act. It’s a positive one. Be selfish, think about yourself, and do things that make you better, healthier, and more alive. Mandi Em is taking this to the extreme, and we are absolutely here for it. While I encourage you to take a bubble bath with champagne, books, and candles any time you want, Em is throwing out some seriously feral self-care ideas you should definitely embrace. Feral Self-Care is about finding your authentic self and tapping into it to become the person you’ll be proud of. Scream into the ether to release tension, dance in the pouring rain, and so much more.
“Feral self-care is a rejection of the idea that self-care can be bought or obtained through picture-perfect methods. It is digging into the here and now to find peace and fulfillment in the messy reality of where you’re at…No yoga. No spa days. Just some truly unhinged fun that is good for your wellness.”
The Mountain Is You: Transforming Self-Sabotage Into Self-Mastery by Brianna Wiest
Wiest says it best when she states, “The greatest act of self-love is to no longer accept a life you are unhappy with. It is to be able to state the problem plainly and in a straightforward manner” in The Mountain Is You. It takes conscious effort and practice to recognize our own weaknesses and the things that keep us from attaining our goals. Many times, those are the unconscious doubts of self-sabotage that cause the greatest obstacles.
In this self-betterment text, Wiest will help you recognize the mountains keeping you from becoming that which you desire and turn those challenges into scalable steps easily climbed to your personal summit.
You Are a Badass(r): How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life by Jen Sincero
This isn’t your typical self-help book with dreary prose that causes your eyes to cross in boredom. Sincero utilizes some of her best personality traits — humor, humility, and the occasional swear word — to help you recognize the behaviors and traits that keep you from attaining that which you want. Not only will she help you find and understand who you are, but she’ll help you embrace your findings and harness them to be your best badass self.
“Do not waste your precious time giving one single crap about what anybody else thinks of you…what other people think about you has nothing to do with you and everything to do with them.
It’s time to be selfish. It’s time to think about what it is you want for yourself and how to achieve those wants. There is nothing wrong with bettering the person you are and taking the time to do it. Hopefully, these recommendations will help you do just that.
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Find these books and more on our Non-Fiction Titles for the Enlightened Mind bookshelf on Bookshop.org.