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These are the 10 best self-discovery books to help guide you on your own journey to uncover your true self.
Self-discovery is a complicated process. As humans, we are ever-evolving, growing, and changing. Uncovering who we are is a constant journey, rather than a final destination.
Self-discovery is all about examining your life, identifying any areas that are lacking, and taking steps towards a better existence.
The path of self-discovery can feel daunting and complicated.
Where do I start? How do I truly begin to uncover who I really am? What steps do I take to discover my true self?
Luckily, you don’t have to go into this blindly. There are some incredible resources out there to help guide you on your journey towards self-discovery.
Throughout my own journey towards growth, I have found that one of the best resources for self-discovery is a book. Yup. It really is as simple as that.
When I say that there are some books that have literally changed my life, I am not exaggerating. Books truly have the power to completely shift your mindset, your thinking, your habits, and, as a result, the person you are.
If you are feeling lost and exhausted on your self-discovery journey, know you’re not alone… and you are NOT a lost cause. Below are the top 10 books about self-discovery that have helped me remain motivated in my own personal discovery process.
Each of these books is unique and offers its own perspective on self-discovery, making them each valuable in their own way. These books have helped me develop the best, truest, most well-rounded, and balanced version of myself yet.
These truly are the 10 best self-discovery books to help connect you to your most authentic self.
10 Best Self-Discovery Books
1. Untamed by Glennon Doyle
Starting off with the #1 self-discovery book that has completely changed my life.
Untamed by Glennon Doyle is the holy-grail book for self-discovery. The entire book is about becoming UNTAMED from what society has forced you to become and, instead, becoming firmly grounded in the person you truly are. (Hello, self-discovery!)
Untamed is one of those books where you sit down with sticky notes or a highlighter to note the really good lines… and then you want to highlight the entire book. There are so many sentences, paragraphs, and even full chapters that are just one big “YES!“. I have never felt as understood by a book as I do by Untamed.
My mom is actually the first person that was a Glennon Doyle fan. Now, she’s turned me and my sister into fellow Cheetahs (read the book to understand this reference;) ). I’m an avid listener to Glennon’s Podcast now with her sister and her wife, Abby Wambach (yes, the soccer Olympian!). I also just got the journal that goes along with Untamed and I can’t wait to start working through it.
2. 13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do by Amy Morin
Mental strength. That’s a key part of navigating self-discovery – and that’s what this book is ALL about.
This makes the top 10 list of best self-discovery books for me simply because of how much it teaches you about becoming mentally tough and resilient. Morin recognizes that life is tough. With that, she helps equip us with tools and strategies to remain strong in tough times.
Mental toughness is crucial for shifting your attitude and your outlook on life. After reading this book, I noticed myself super aware of the “13 Things” in my own life. Yes, I was guilty of ALL of them. But, thanks to this book, I was now at least aware. I’ve been able to acknowledge when these weaknesses pop up and actively counter them – the change I’ve seen in my own life is huge.
3. Unf*ck Yourself by Gary John Bishop
A list of self-discovery books would not be complete without some Gary John Bishop tough love. Bishop has a whole series of books now, although Unf*ck Yourself is the only one I have read so far. (I hope to read the rest this year!)
Unf*ck Yourself is a no-B.S. approach to self-discovery. This book talks a lot about your own internal limiting beliefs and how you hold yourself back from living the life you truly want to live. Bishop gives advice and tools for how to get out of your own head to live a happier life.
I personally love Gary Johnn Bishop’s approach to self-discovery and self-improvement. His swear-worded-tough-love approach brings up a feeling of both motivation and humor. It feels like you are sitting down and having the hard chats with a close friend.
4. All Along You Were Blooming by Morgan Harper Nichols
Morgan Harper Nichols is one of the best authors and poets out there. Her words are so deeply beautiful, inspiring, and honest. All Along You Were Blooming is a collection of her beautiful, poetic words.
All Along You Were Blooming is a unique read. Instead of being formatted as a traditional chapter book like most of these self-discovery books, this book is a collection of separate short poetry and prose pieces. Because of that, it’s a quick and easy read – but definitely doesn’t lack powerful content.
When I read All Along You Were Blooming for the first time, I read the whole book all in one sitting. Yes, you read that right. I read the entire book in one night.
The second time I read it, I took a slower approach. I treated it as a sort of daily devotional/inspiration. I’d read one or two pages with my morning coffee and it made for such a beautiful morning routine.
5. Uninvited by Lysa TerKeurst
Lysa TerKurst is a Christian author that does a beautiful job of combining Christianity with self-improvement and inspiration. Uninvited is TerKurst’s #1 New York Times bestseller – and the first novel of hers I ever read.
Uninvited gets raw, real, and honest about the feelings of loneliness, insecurity, and self-doubt that we all face in life. TerKurst managed to both validate and honor those feelings of pain and rejection, while also offering actionable advice for moving forward.
After I read Uninvited, I passed it around to my mom, sister, and best friend. I found the book to be one of the best self-discovery books I’ve read. It is so deeply powerful and moving. Definitely a great read for your own self-discovery journey.
6. The Untethered Soul by Michael A. Singer
The Untethered Soul is a CLASSIC book about self-discovery. Written in 2007, this book remains one of the best books for self-discovery and personal growth to this day.
One of the toughest parts about pursuing personal growth, happiness, and self-discovery is your own limitations and negative self-beliefs. This book helps you dive deep into your internal journey and free (or untether) yourself from those hindrances.
The Untethered Soul was one of the most influential books in my healing journey from trauma, mental illness, and pain. This book helped teach me how to be present in the moment, release painful memories, and free myself from self-destructive habits – all key components of self-discovery.
7. What I Know For Sure by Oprah Winfrey
By Oprah Winfrey. Enough said?
Just kidding, this book is too good to not talk about.
What I Know For Sure by Oprah Winfrey is a collection of Oprah’s advice, knowledge, and wisdom. The book takes the form of many essays, organized by theme. The themes include – joy, resilience, connection, gratitude, possibility, awe, clarity, and power.
This is a great self-discovery book for a couple of reasons. First and foremost, the knowledge and words of Oprah Winfrey are simply inspiring. Oprah is one of the most powerful women I can think of. Hearing her personal stories is amazing.
Secondly, Oprah offers real, honest, and realistic advice for becoming a better version of yourself. Her uplifting words and honest spirit motivate a deeply powerful self-discovery journey.
8. The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
Don Miguel Ruiz is a Toltec spiritualist author of multiple books now. You may have heard of his work – The Mastery of Love, The Mastery of Self, The Four Agreements, The Fifth Agreement, etc.
The Four Agreements is also considered a “Practical Guide to Personal Freedom”. Now, if that doesn’t scream self-discovery book, I don’t know what does.
The Four Agreements is largely about our self-limiting beliefs and how they stand in our way of becoming our best selves.
Toltec wisdom is an incredibly powerful source. After I read The Mastery of Love, The Four Agreements was a no-brainer for being next on my list. It helped me dig deep, identify my self-limiting beliefs, and learn how to free myself from them. Definitely a great book for self-discovery if you are looking to free yourself from your own inner critic.
9. How to Stop Feeling Like Sh*t by Andrea Owens
Andrea Owens’ book How to Stop Feeling Like Sh*t compares to other no-B.S. self-help books such as Unf*ck Yourself (seen above) and The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck (another great self-discovery book).
In her book, Owens calls out the 14 habits that so many of us have that leave us feeling like – well – sh*t. This is one of the best self-discovery books for women in particular as Owens gears her writing towards women and the self-sabotaging habits that she’s found hold us back. I love this book because it mixes tough love with empathy and understanding. It’s like a deep conversation with a BFF or sister.
Full authenticity, I have not officially finished this book yet. I am currently in the final three chapters. As part of my New Year’s Resolution, I challenged myself to swap social media for reading before bed. This book was the first one on my reading list for the New Year and I couldn’t have picked a better book for self-discovery this year.
10. The Daily Stoic by Ryan Holiday
I’m on the fence if I would call The Daily Stoic a self-discovery novel… It’s really more of a daily guide to meditation, presence, mindfulness, growth, and, of course, self-discovery.
The Daily Stoic is intended to be a one-day-at-a-time guide to meditation and mindfulness exercises. Within the book, there are 366 daily meditations (one for every day of the year). This book is perfect for self-discovery because it guides you inwards and turns you towards your internal self, uniting you with your inner knowing.
I have not worked through all 366 days, but this book is powerful. If you are looking for an actionable guide to self-discovery, this is a perfect option for you.
Shop These 10 Self-Discovery Books:
So, now that you know the best self-discovery books…
It is entirely up to you to put them into action. Researching self-discovery books is a promising first step. Now, the challenge becomes following through and putting the insights of these books into action as you face the question…
“Who Are You?”
When you face this complicated, ever-evolving, age-old question, it is my hope that these 10 best self-discovery books can help you find an answer.
Keep in mind that there is no final destination to self-discovery. As long as you are alive, you evolve and the question persists. However, these self-discovery books can help guide you into taking the best step in the right direction of your journey.
Best of luck to you and the incredible person you are becoming.
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