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Best Books to Build Confidence & Discover Self-Love

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Another one of my goals, in addition to settling personal boundaries and embracing self-love, is to read more books. I know. As an English teacher, I should read books all the time, right?


Guys, I’m a total victim of technology. You wouldn’t believe the hours I waste playing around on my phone especially watching Instagram Stories. It’s obscene, and I’m not alone. Phone addiction is a real thing. And it’s tied to a whole mess of issues given it offers customers a believable facade of social interaction. However, interaction through a screen is actually a poor replacement for living and breathing encounters.

Life Tip: there are more valuable things in life than spending time with the phone. Reading is one of those valuable pastimes.

Along with reading my usual genres, such as horror and thriller novels, this past year I’ve also dipped my toes into the *gasp* self-help sections of my local bookstores. Cheesy? Maybe, but I think these are some of the best books for self esteem.

the best books for self esteem will make you smile too
Check out that grin!

The Best Books to Build Confidence Changed My Outlook!

Okay, I get it. Sinking into negativity is normal for people. However, as misery creeps into every corner of your life, your self-esteem takes a huge punch in the gut. You deserve better.

So, instead of dwelling on things I can’t change, I’ve been trying to focus on life’s positive energy. Is there a lot I wish I could fix? Sure! For example, I don’t want to deal with my electric or Optimum bills. But I think everyone feels the same way. Nothing ground breaking. I can dedicate my time and energy to self-improvement and passion projects rather than fuming over a grouchy cashier or an incorrect bill. Life is what you make of it. Your perceptions, so to speak.

Truthfully, I’m a lot more in tune with my needs after reading so many books about building confidence and self-worth. For example, I already feel like I’m a million times better at respecting myself, my needs, and my emotions compared to last year, and I hope the same thing will happen to you!

game of thrones is one of the best books for self esteem. or to rule the world haha.

My Favorite Books to Increase Confidence

For this post, I decided to compile this list for you in the hopes of encouraging you to build confidence and self-love. I’ll, of course, add to this post as I read more books, which I sincerely hope to do throughout the year. Yay me!

So take out your Kindle or write a list for your local library or independent bookstore. It’s time to breakdown my list of best books to build confidence. Happy reading!

the best books for self esteem will change your life
At the Brooklyn Book Festival!

1. Lucky Bitch – Denise Duffield-Thomas

Denise Duffield-Thomas is one of the most positive and inspirational women ever. Personally, all content creators and entrepreneurs (including bloggers) ought to check out her website to add a dose of cheerfulness into your day.

Duffield-Thomas’s best selling book “Lucky Bitch: A Guide for Exceptional Women to Create Outrageous Success” is a great read for women (and men!) who need a little positivity injected into their lives – especially regarding money troubles. She teaches you how to appreciate money rather than fear it. As for me, I particularly loved the section on forgiveness. Holding onto grudges stops us from letting go and reaching our full potentials. Following her journaling advice was very therapeutic for me.

Buy your copy of “Lucky Bitch”

the best books for building confidence will help take you to beautiful places like banff

2. The Secret – Rhonda Bryne

I already know some of you are cringing at this recommendation. And, okay, I agree some parts of the Law of Attraction are total nonsense. I absolutely 100% don’t believe cancer patients or natural disaster victims somehow manifested their misfortunes via negative thinking habits. Victim blaming is reprehensible. Period. End of story.

Regardless, Rhonda Byrne’s “The Secret” is a good book for helping you change your mindset for the better. I really believe it’s true that “looking on the bright side” will make a long day less terrible. So will behaving as if you’re already successful and beautiful in spite of your current situation. See the glass half full!

Buy your copy of “The Secret”

invest in books to increase confidence and be a better version of you!

3. You Are a Badass® – Jen Sincero

Haha, the full title to this epic book is “You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life.” What a mouthful, huh? Try to say that title three times fast! I dare ya!

Anyway, Jen Sincero’s book might be a little “hippy dippy” for some readers (lots of references to the universe and all that jazz), but regardless, I liked her suggestions a lot! It’s sad how we’re conditioned to “fall out of love” with ourselves, which Sincero covers in the early pages of the book.

Turn affection back onto yourself and be the best version of “you” every single day of your life.

Buy your copy of “You Are a Badass”

the best books for building self esteem are a good education

4. The Four Hour Workweek – Timothy Ferriss

Not happy with working insane hours every single week? Then you ought to check “The Four Hour Workweek,” which has sold over 1 million copies worldwide. It’s time to pursue your dreams, people.

This book will teach you how to redesign your life and reassure you that it’s “okay” to take career breaks throughout your life, rather than save every cent for a retirement you might not even experience due to illness or just bad luck. I think (especially in the United States) too many people brag about being “workaholics,” as if they have nothing else to live for other than their job. Give me a break.

Design the life you want live. I’m not saying you need to quit your job, buy a one way ticket to Los Angeles, and try to win an Academy Award. But you need time dedicated to your own passions and needs. Workaholism isn’t a good look, sorry.

Buy your copy of “The Four Hour Workweek”

the best books for self esteem and confidence may contain poetry

5. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck – Mark Manson

Alright, I know the title is pretty vulgar, but you still should give this book a chance particularly if you’re constantly stressing out things that don’t matter in the long run. Mark Manson’s “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck” will help you prioritize much better.

I mean, think about it. We care too much about things that don’t matter and, as a result, those things suck up all our energy and leave us feeling depleted. Sometimes we even feel taken advantage of.

Stop worrying about comparing yourself to the Instagram star with 1 million followers. Stop worrying about the rude Audi driver who has no clue what a “zipper merge” is. Worry only about the things that deeply matter. You’ll feel a lot happier and suffer from lower blood pressure.

Buy your copy of “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck”

enjoy the best books to build self esteem on a nice summer day

6. The Four Agreements – Don Miguel Ruiz

Don’t have the time or inclination to read entire piles of self-books? Then you might want to check out “The Four Agreements: The Practical Guide to Personal Freedom.” Ruiz’s book is very short and focuses on four major changes to transform your life. Follow these agreements and your quality of life will skyrocket into the moon!

To summarize, the basic four agreements are:

  • Be Impeccable with Your Word. Meaning avoid gossip and negative self-talk. The Word is important. Respect it.
  • Don’t Take Anything Personally. Other people experience subjective realities. Their emotions and experiences have nothing to do with your dignity as a human being.
  • Don’t Make Assumptions. We can’t read minds so why bother trying to?
  • Always Do Your Best. At the end of the day, giving 100% toward a goal is all you can realistically do. Be proud of your best.

These four agreements seem obvious, but they’re easier said than done. Try to implement one new agreement per week into your life and see how everything changes.

Buy your copy of “The Four Agreements”

the best books for self esteem and confidence will help you see things in a new light

7. 13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do – Amy Morin

Back in December, I really enjoyed Amy Morin’s book “13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do.” Have you seen her TED Talk on this topic? You ought to check it out. It’s a great starting point for reading her book.

Anyway I had many favorite parts in this book. For example, the chapter “They Don’t Give Away Their Power” reminded me that it’s important to remember that I’m in control of my emotions, not other people. Sure, a situation might hurt me, but I’m still responsible for how I react to it. I also really liked the section “They Don’t Resent Other People’s Success.” In the age of social media, it seems like all aspects of life are a hyper competition, and that if you fall behind your peers, then you’re a loser who fails at life. This atmosphere allows jealousy to fester like an untreated infection.

I think this book “reads fast” too for people who feel like they don’t have much time to sit down and read hundreds upon hundreds of pages.

Buy your copy of “13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do”

the best books to build confidence will make you smile

8. Girl, Wash Your Face – Rachel Hollis

My final recommendation (and what I’m reading at the moment!) is called “Girl, Wash Your Face” written by entrepreneur and lifestyle expert Rachel Hollish. Her book tells us all the random lies we tell ourselves, which bring us down to new lows. Addressing these lies, consequently, allows more happiness and freedoms into our lives. In particular, I just read the section called “I Will Start Tomorrow” and it really spoke to me.

I think a lot of people suffer from procrastination. It’s tempting, isn’t it? To ignore work and do something more enjoyable until the deadline rears its ugly head. But what about goals that don’t have any deadlines looming over heads? You’re stuck forever. I don’t want that life.

Buy your copy of “Girl, Wash Your Face”

harry potter is one of the best books for self esteem!

What if the Best Books to Build Self Esteem Don’t Help Me?

Building confidence is a lot of work. It requires shifting your mindset, as well as transforming any bad habits and hobbies. You’re gonna have to put in time, I’m afraid.

In other words, we discover 99% of the world’s answers within the pages of books, but this knowledge is useless if we’re unable to apply it to our real lives.

As you read these books, take it one single step at a time. For example, maybe commit to listening to a ten minute mediation every night before you fall asleep. Do this for a week. Then the second week take a lovely twenty minute walk each day and enjoy nature in addition to your nightly meditation sessions.

Building strong self-esteem might not happen overnight, but that’s okay. Overnight success stories are myths.

find the best books for building self esteem at your local bookstore

What do you think are the best books to build confidence? I always need advice in this area, and I’d love to hear your thoughts and opinions.

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