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Top 10 Self-Improvement Books to Beat the Rest to the Top

By Michael

One of the best things a person can do to help them on the ladder to success is glean from the insights of others. This list of 10 books is designed to provide a powerful list of resources that can bring positive change to your life. Although not all of the titles fit in the “self-help” category, they each offer challenging principles for success and change.

  1. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (Stephen R. Covey) – The path to the top is neither easy nor quick; it requires persistence and discipline. In his top-selling book, Stephen Covey spells out seven habits or disciplines that he says can be found in the most effective and successful people. With profound insight and clarity, Covey explains why the habits are important to effectiveness in any realm of life, and offers steps to implement the principles into your everyday life. Highly acclaimed and recommended by many.

  2. Steve Jobs (Walter Isaacson) – while not a self-improvement book by name, the riveting tale of Steve Job’s remarkable achievements will provide plenty of inspiration. In addition, the tale, skillfully woven by Walter Isaacson, gives a realistic look at the struggles and difficulties a climb to the top entails. As a man who wanted to “put a dent in the universe (1),” Job’s creative genius certainly impacted many, and took a struggling Apple through an amazing rebound.

  3. The Power of Self-Coaching: The Five Essential Steps to Creating the Life You Want (Joseph J. Luciani, Ph.D.) – a key to success is overcoming harmful self-habits that control your life. Dr. Luciani explains how habits such as worry, perfectionism, anxiety, boredom, chronic fatigue, and others stem from insecurity that has been controlled the wrong way. Using a variety of quizzes, drills, and exercises, this book seeks to empower you to overcome insecurity and step confidently into your future.

  4. First, Break All the Rules: What the World’s Greatest Managers Do Differently (Marcus Buckingham & Curt Coffman) – written as a result of interviewing more than 80,000 managers in over 400 companies, this remarkable book lays out the premise that the most successful managers are those who do not manage by the book. The authors clearly illustrate many current business practices are actually counter-productive, and equips leaders with essential tools for success (2).

  5. The One Thing You Need to Know (Marcus Buckingham) – based of insights gained from empirical evidence in the massive study mentioned in the above book, Buckingham produced this follow-up book, offering insight into the one thing that is needed for three critical aspect of life: managing, leading, and sustained individual success. The overall theme? Stop doing what you hate (3).

  6. Success Built to Last: Creating a Life that Matters (Jerry Porras, Steward Emery, and Mark Thomspon) – this book does the hard work for you. It provides a fascinating condensation of the key things that successful people have in common, then creates a few simple practices from them. The result is a few tried and true success secrets that anyone can benefit from.

  7. Getting Things Done: the Art of Stress-Free Productivity (David Allen) – for many, the rise to the top in their chosen field is riddled with the stress that over-productivity brings. Personal productivity guru David Allen shows readers how to stop procrastinating and get things done; without the stress.

  8. Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap… and Others Don’t (Jim Collins) – while focused on business rather than individual success, this book will equip readers with keys that they can utilize within their job to help make their employer a success. What better way to get promoted to the top than being an essential asset to your company’s success?

  9. Awaken the Giant Within (Anthony Robbins) – in this life-changing book, Anthony Robbins guides readers with practical, step-by-step approaches to self-mastery. With principles that effect every area of life, this book will help readers become more successful in their personal life; resulting in success in the career realm as well.

  10. Seeds of Greatness (Denis Waitley) – another book focusing on personal change, this book shares ten attributes that will transform a person’s life for the better, enabling them to accomplish more and reach higher.




About the Author

Michael “Big Mike” McCaffery writes for the career division of the GoDish entertainment company.   Say hello at their Facebook page when you stop by to see the latest news. 


The above guest post is published based on the premise that it will be helpful and informative. The opinions made within it are those of the author and not of The links you may find within this post do not necessarily imply our recommendation or endorsement of the views expressed within them.


Sabrina says:

I could think of a number of books that are missing in this list. For example, Think and grow rich: the original 1937 edition from Napoleon Hill. This book is a master piece among the self improvement literature. Make sure to acquire the original version because the edited versions miss on some important info. This is not only about getting rich in the material sense of the word. It is much more than that, because this book for the first time explicitly mentions the power of positive thinking. This book is a timeless guide into finding out about what your own life is about.

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