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Top 10 Life Changing Books
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You may read for fun, out of curiosity or to learn new things. As you read, sometimes you’ll come across life changing books in unexpected places. These books may teach you a lesson. Sometimes they may articulate your own feelings with surprising accuracy. When you’re in a dark place, some books can point you in a different direction. Here are ten of the best life-changing books that you might want to pick up this weekend.
Harper Lee’s – To Kill a Mockingbird, 1960
This novel is old, recommended again and again, and the only book of fiction on this list. But we had to include it among the best life-changing books, because Atticus Finch is one of the noblest characters that any novelist has ever created. No other pretentious exploration on how to be a good person can match the effect that this book may have had on millions of people around the world. You can buy the paperback from Amazon at $5.89.
Stephen R. Covey’s – 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, 1989
This book is a manual for business leaders and among the world’s best life-changing books. But really, anyone can learn from Stephen Covey’s advice on getting things done. The book was a mega-hit when it came out. Millions of young entrepreneurs around the world, lost and hungry to give a framework to their dreams, have thumbed its pages.
Today, it may seem a little dated: Covey is essentially telling you to get off Facebook and take steps towards your goals. But one tool I carry with me even today is the 2X2 matrix to prioritize tasks to organize each week around. You can buy the paperback on Amazon for $10.57.
Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s – Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience, 1990
This is a fascinating book that confirms something that you may have suspected all along. That the optimal experiences of our lives don’t come from weekends and vacations. Those are only pauses for recharge. It’s only when we are are giving our all in pursuing meaningful goals we’ve set ourselves, that we are in the ‘flow’. It is also when we are happiest. But it’s not always easy maintaining that flow. This book teaches you how you can channel it, and makes it one of the best life-changing books to read. The classic is available on Amazon for a steal of $2.99.
Tal Ben-Shahar’s – Happier, 2007
Happier is a book of stories, anecdotes, wisdom and research by a psychologist from Harvard. If you want to learn practical tips to find happiness in everyday life, this is one of the life changing books that will help you. It doesn’t teach you impractical philosophies, but about little changes that you can make in your life to be happier. Amazon is offering the paperback for $6.81.
Viktor Frankl’s – Man’s Search for Meaning,1946
Have you ever wondered how the prisoners in concentration camps got through each day? How do they reconcile to their situation in their minds? The author gives us a first-hand account of such an experience. What makes the book one among the top life changing books is the questions that Frankl explores. What kind of a person does a prisoner become? This book was written more than fifty years ago. But it’s brilliant because it’s still relevant (it has sold 10 million copies). It will tell you things about humanity and survival that may change the way you think. You can buy the beautiful hardcover gift edition on Amazon starting at $14.35.
Ta-Nehisi Coates’ – Between the World and Me, 2015
This is not an easy book to read. Nor is it a classic (it was recently released), or without flaws. It is inspired by a classic – James Baldwin’s The Fire Next Time. Like the inspiration, it starts with a letter to a young black boy. But Coates’ view of the present black position in America is bleak. He tells his son plainly that in America, it is heritage to destroy the black body. Yet like Baldwin, he urges his son to struggle against it.
In a way, the book is powerful because it is a rare book about racism that is not written for white people. If you read it open-mindedly, and ask yourself the tough questions that Coates raises, the book may change your perspective on how you see other people. You can get the paperback on Amazon for $9.59.
James Allen’s – As a Man Thinketh, 1903
This short work is profound and powerful, and deserves to feature along with other life changing books. You’ll be able to read through it in a couple of hours, and come away with simple but important ideas on the power of thought to change your life. Get the 21st century edition of the book for $5.99 on Amazon.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s – Dear Ijeawele, or a Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions, 2017
This excellent book is written as a letter to a friend on how to bring up her daughter a feminist. But anyone can read this book – fathers, sons, daughters too. The best-selling novelist has the right idea of equality in the 21st century between men and women. The points she makes are easy to follow, if we can only follow them. And if we do, this book can become one of the life changing books we treasure forever. The hardcover format is available on Amazon for $10.53.
Nina Riggs’– The Bright Hour: A Memoir of Living and Dying, 2017
The Bright Hour is one of those witty, moving and bittersweet books that will change your life. It is the autobiography of a dying mum, after she has learned that she is dying of breast cancer. The ‘cancer’ book could clearly have become a tearjerker – and it does draw tears though never gratuitously. But it’s a beautiful, pragmatic, humorously written meditation on life and death. Riggs’ language is poetic and evocative. She was a poet after all, and a direct descendant of Ralph Waldo Emerson. You can read the hardcover from Amazon at $15.72.
Malcolm Gladwell’s – The Outliers
This is another of those books that will change your life, if you let it. It is a book about ordinary people who achieve success. It will make you think about your own situation. Hopefully, it will inspire you to keep going! Get it on Amazon for $10.29.
We hope you find something that you enjoy on this list. Some are modern classics. But we’ve also slipped in a few recent releases that we think have the potential to become books that will change your life.
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