15 Undergraduate Science-Supported Self-Help Books You Need to Read

When I was first exposed to self-help materials, my life was at an all-time low.

I’m preparing to graduate with a BA in Political Communication and go straight to law school shortly thereafter.

The only problem, however, is that going to law school and becoming a lawyer was the last damn thing I wanted to do in my life.

I have been a good boy since childhood. I took advice from mom and dad about getting good grades, going to law school, and getting a “safe job.” It’s about all the good things parents want to give their kids.

But then, one day, I woke up with a pretty solid realization: When did I make a conscious decision to dedicate 60% of my waking hours to corporate law?

“Damn,” I thought. “The damn thing has to change now.”

I decided to leave law school behind and try to find something meaningful to do with my life.

However, I know I have to “find myself” before I can find anything else. So, over the next five years, I read more than 450 self-help books to find my way of life.

Most of them sucked, but a few persevered.

Here are 15 science-backed self-help books that will (hopefully) help you make some positive strides in your personal development.

1. “Flow” by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

Let’s start the party with a quick little exercise: Imagine you’re working on something — maybe a project — that you happen to absolutely love to do. It’s also something you’re damn good at.

How do you feel when you do this type of work? Does it make you feel good? Does it energize you? Hours seem to fly by like minutes? If it is, then you are probably in what’s called a “flowing” state.

Wondering how you can bring more flow into your life? Pick up this book.

Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience$7, Amazon

2. The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey

Unless you’ve lived for decades, you’ve probably heard of the “Seven Habits.” But have you really read it? If not, now is the time to start.

The power of this book comes from the timeless principles (or habits) on which it is based. Each habit listed in this book is intended as a personal prescription to work in every area of ​​life (physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual).

7 Habits of Highly Effective People$8, Amazon

3. “Willpower: Rediscovering Humanity’s Most Powerful Power” by Roy F. Baumeister and John Tierney

I learned a very important self-help lesson from “willpower”: There are basically two qualities associated with success. One is intelligence and the other is self-control.So far, scientists haven’t figured out how to deal with intelligence, but they Have Rediscovered how to improve self-control.

This book outlines how to improve impulse control, perhaps the most underrated aspect of self-help.

This book will change the way you live.

Willpower: Rediscovering Humanity’s Most Powerful Power$11, Amazon

4. “The ONE Thing” by Gary Keller and Jay Papasan

Think about one thing you ultimately want to do with your life, career or business. Once you’ve figured that out, think about how many dominoes you’ll need to line up and knock out to make it happen.

Simple, right? Actually. This is. However, just because it’s simple isn’t easy.

That’s why “The ONE Thing” is such a powerful book. According to the authors, the key to success is to identify your most important goals—in every area that matters to you in your career, career, health, relationships, and life—and knock down one domino at a time, until you reach it.

one thing15 dollars, Amazon

5. “Psycho-Cybernetics” by Maxwell Maltz

“Pyscho Cybernetics” was written by a plastic surgeon who decided that one day he wanted to help his patients see their beauty. Inverted and external, That’s probably why most of them walked into his office.

This is a surprisingly powerful little self-help book with practical advice on boosting confidence, overcoming fears, and more.

CyberneticsUSD10, Amazon

6. The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg

The interesting thing about habits is that once we form them, they become completely ignored in our daily activities.

You probably don’t think about how many simultaneous movements are required to reverse your car safely and smoothly out of the garage and onto the street; you just do it. It’s a habit, but so is smoking.

The Power of Habit teaches you how to develop better habits that serve your life and career.

the power of habit$9, Amazon

7. Meditation by Marcus Aurelius

Meditation is full of Stoic wisdom that is as true today as it was when it was first written more than 1,800 years ago.

What’s remarkable about this book (and why it’s on this list) is that science has confirmed that these recommendations work for our physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health. Pick up a copy of this ancient text to learn more and see if you can bring a little old Stoic wisdom into the 21st century.

meditation1, Amazon

8. “Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity” by David Allen

You can have some of the greatest and most innovative ideas in the world, but every one of them fails due to lack of ability implement. If you lack the willingness and ability to get things done effectively and efficiently, it doesn’t matter how great your ideas are, because when all is said and done, success depends on concerted action.

That’s why “Getting Things Done” is such an important read.

get things doneUSD10, Amazon

9. How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie

Decades before we had the science and research to prove the power of emotional intelligence, Dale Carnegie has written the definitive guide on how to harness it in our lives and businesses.

How to Win Friends and Influence People is one of those self-help books that everyone needs to collect. I’ve lost count of how many friends I’ve given.

How to Win Friends and Influence Others$8, Amazon

10. “Wake Up” by Sam Harris

Still wondering which box to check under the Religious Preferences category? Are you wondering if you want to check any boxes? It’s not as big as it used to be.

In “Waking Up,” neuroscientist Sam Harris breaks down the science of how the brain is related to consciousness — which, in turn, is related to spirituality — to show us that you can indeed be spiritual without religion.

stand up, $7, Amazon

11. “Leaders Eat Until The End” by Simon Sinek

Leaders Eat Last is a self-help book disguised as a leadership book. Author Simon Sinek outlines actionable insights into why leaders need to replace the old “carrot and stick” management model with a more sustainable approach. He explains that empathy-based strategies aimed at increasing engagement and camaraderie are the ones lacking in the modern workplace.

Choose this book if you plan (or have) to lead a career or business with teams that rely on collaboration to succeed.

The leader eats to the end, 15 dollars, Amazon

12. “Give and Take: Why Helping Others Drives Our Success” Adam Grant

It is said that the only way to succeed in life is to crush our enemies and make your way to the top. Followers of this mindset believe that it doesn’t matter how many fingers it takes to get to the top, it matters that you get to the top.

This is nonsense. In his book, “Give and Take,” author Adam Grant has research to prove it.Grant says the real driver of success is not give rather than taking.

give and receive, $7, Amazon

13. Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi

Never Eat Alone – a book about connecting with people – is on this list because everything in life happens through people. In his book, Keith Ferrazzi breaks down the science behind building meaningful relationships.

My biggest takeaway? Stop trying to “network” with people to get what you want and start trying to add value. Just read books. This is a game changer.

Never eat alone, $17, Amazon

14. “Outliers: A Success Story” by Malcolm Gladwell

This is a book about success and how much more it means than just being smart and working hard. Maybe you’ve heard of Gladwell’s famous 10,000-hour rule and how it relates to success; however, there’s a lot to learn about how successful people become so successful in the first place.

If you’re looking for some self-help literature that focuses on the subtleties and nuances that helped icons like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs succeed, Outliers is a must-read.

outliers, $11, Amazon

15. “10% Happy” by Dan Harris

If you’re a natural skeptic, this book is for you. In his book, “10% Happier,” news anchor Dan Harris documents his clashes with top self-help gurus like the quack doctors behind “The Secret” and intersects their claims with science Citations determine if they persist.

Along the way, he discovered the intersection of science and spirituality.

10% happier, $9, Amazon

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