6 Great Self-Help Books to Check Out
By guest blogger Dixie Somers
Reading self-help books is an incredible way to boost your self-esteem, develop positive habits, and get in sync with your intuition. Due in large part to the hectic pace of modern life, self-help books have become increasingly popular in the publishing industry. If you’re thinking of picking up a self-help book but don’t know where to start, you should check out this list. Below are six amazing self-help books that have inspired millions of readers around the world.
Outwitting the Devil by Napoleon Hill
Although American author Napoleon Hill’s Outwitting the Devil isn’t as well known as Think and Grow Rich, people who take the time to read this work aren’t disappointed. Indeed, some people believe Outwitting the Devil is Hill’s masterpiece. Interestingly, Hill wrote this work in the 1930s, but it wasn’t until 2012 that Hill’s descendants decided to publish it. The major part of this text is written in the form of a dialogue between Hill and Satan. Throughout this fascinating discussion, Hill reveals powerful strategies to overcoming our “inner demons” of procrastination, boredom, and excessive worry. He also reveals how we can easily get caught in negative habits that lead us to “drift” through life without joy, abundance, or meaning. Whether you believe Hill’s conversation with the Devil was real or imagined, you’ll certainly learn a great deal from this gripping book.
Who Ordered This Truckload of Dung? By Ajahn Brahm
In case you haven’t already seen his popular YouTube videos, Ajahn Brahm is the abbot of the Buddhist Bodhinyana Monastery near Perth, Australia. Before becoming a monastic, Brahm (real name Peter Betts) studied physics at Cambridge University. Soon after college, Brahm decided to renounce home life and ordained under the legendary Thai monk Ajahn Chah. Today, Brahm is beloved for his wit, wisdom, and meditation expertise. His most famous book, Who Ordered This Truckload of Dung?, contains over 100 mostly humorous stories that contain pearls of Buddhist wisdom on life, love, and loss. While these stories are all quick reads, the lessons you’ll learn from them last a lifetime.
The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
Eckhart Tolle’s The Power of Now is a major reason why mindfulness is now mainstream. Published in 1997, this interesting book encourages readers to loosen their attachment to the “false ego” by bringing their attention back to the present moment. Tolle first reveals his own serious bouts with depression and how he overcame these negative thought patterns with recognition of the “eternal now.” the rest of the book explores how we can all benefit from bringing our attention to the “ever-present now” throughout our day-to-day activities. Tolle draws on numerous religious traditions including Christianity, Zen Buddhism, and Taoism to explore ways to tap into the power of the present moment and achieve our highest potential.
10% Happier by Dan Harris
Journalist Dan Harris is well respected for his integrity on ABC News programs like Nightline and Good Morning America. That’s why it came as a shock to the media world when he revealed his struggles with anxiety in 10% Happier. Luckily for Harris, he found a way to naturally cure himself of panic attacks: daily meditation. Harris’s incredible memoir is targeted at anyone skeptical about the miraculous healing claims meditators make about their spiritual discipline. Through brain research and personal anecdotes, Harris encourages readers to start a daily meditation practice for better concentration, increased vitality, and, of course, greater happiness.
Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman
Thinking, Fast and Slow is one of the most awarded self-help books in recent years. Written by Nobel Prize-winning psychologist Daniel Kahneman, this book teaches us how to effectively manage our two major mental processing systems: the fast emotional system and the slower logical system. Kahneman shares numerous scientific studies as he explores ways to train these two systems to work at peak efficiency. Thinking, Fast and Slow is the winner of the 2012 National Academy of Sciences Best Book Award and the 2013 Presidential Medal of Freedom.
The Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell
While The Power of Myth isn’t marketed as a self-help book, it has certainly become one for many spiritual seekers. Published in 1988, The Power of Myth is the most easily accessible of mythology scholar Joseph Campbell’s oeuvre. In this amazing text, Campbell shows how the stories of world mythology can be seen as a reflection of our subconscious mind. Throughout this book, Campbell suggests that every human is on his/her own “hero’s journey” through life and suggests using stories, myths, and legends to better understand how to slay the dragons (or, if you prefer, “neuroses”) in our psyches.
People read self-help books for a wide variety of reasons. Some readers are searching for spiritual enlightenment, while others are looking for better business strategies. Whatever you’re looking for, you’re sure to find it in at least one of the books listed above; you can also look at sites like The 200 Project to find some help. Reading through all of these incredible books will have a positive impact on your perception of the world.
Dixie Somers is a freelance writer and blogger for business, home, and family niches. Dixie lives in Phoenix, Arizona, and is the proud mother of three beautiful girls and wife to a wonderful husband. You can follow her on Facebook.