10 Self-help Books to Radically Improve Your Life

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We all want a good life, but most of us don’t really know what that entails. We tend to focus on external factors to define our well being, but we often overlook our inner worlds, which tend to be more critical in defining our long-term happiness. The following ten books will help you build a solid understanding of how your own psychology works and how you can radically improve your life from within.

1. Mastery — George Leonard

Short and simple, this book will teach you how to become a master at anything you undertake in your life. Leonard talks about the mastery curve and how you can ride it while avoiding the 3 common archetypes of failure on the road to mastery.

2. Authentic Happiness — Martin Seligman

Considered the founder of positive thinking, Seligman has long researched what happiness is and how it works. His book lays out the counterintuitive habits that we must implement in our lives in order to be happier people. Seligman finds that happiness lies in our ability to find and align ourselves with our personal strengths.

3. The 6 Pillars Of Self Esteem — Nathaniel Branden

This book is fundamental for self-esteem and self-confidence issues. It will teach you how to tame your insecurities and issues of failure in all facets of life.

4. A Guide to the Good Life: The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy — William Irvine

This book is a modern take on the ancient philosophy of stoicism. Irvine explains how you can improve your life by applying fundamental principles such as non-entitlement and detachment. He talks about how you can live a simple but fulfilling life and learn how to reduce your thirst for things that are essentially unfulfilling.

5. The 5 Love Languages — Garry Chapman

This book is critical in cultivating a successful intimate relationship. The book defines and explains all of the different “languages” that we use in communicating and receiving love. It talks about how some people will chose to speak one language over another and essentially teaches you how to communicate in all of those languages.

6. The Righteous Mind — Jonathan Haidt

Haidt is a moral psychologist who researches the nature of people’s opinions in politics and religion. His book talks about how our morality comes from the emotional parts of our brain instead of the logical ones. It shows you how your own dogmatic beliefs and assumptions are holding you back in life.

7. The Road Less Traveled — M. Scott Peck

In this book, Peck lays out the fundamental pillars and principles to improve your life. He talks about the importance of developing discipline, dealing with emotional pain instead of avoiding it, truth and honesty, real love and spirituality.

8. Managing Oneself — Peter Drucker

This book is more oriented towards career and business skill development. It explains how to focus on your strengths, how to allocate your time and energy in things that really make a difference and makes you more fulfilled, as well as how to discover the best ways in which you work and learn new skills.

9. Meditations — Marcus Aurelius

Marcus Aurelius was a roman emperor from whom we can extract quite a lot of wisdom, even in our modern times. This book is a collection of his diaries as an emperor, which discuss how he kept composure and mental calmness in the face of death and many other uncontrollable facets of life.

10. The Four Agreements — Don Miguel Ruiz

Don Miguel Luis talks about how men have domesticated themselves and have created their own cage to live in. In other words, he explains how we are our own worst enemy. The book touches 4 fundamental concepts to free ourselves from our own cage: integrity, detachment, getting rid of dogma, and excellence.

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