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10 Books You Should Read If You Want to Change Your Life

Each of them will help you grow to your full potential

10 Books You Should Read If You Want to Change Your Life

Hop on the change train!

Are you happy with where you are in life?

If your answer is no, you might be desperate to make a change. If the answer is yes, you might want to know how you can go even further down the road of happiness and success.

In either of the cases, you are exactly in the right spot.

The following books are here to be your guide. They will push you towards improvement by teaching you the right steps.

Let’s make our tomorrow better than our today!

10 Books You Should Read If You Want to Change Your Life

The incredible power of 1%.

Why do you fear change?

Probably because taking a leap is scary.

What if I told you that there is no need to take a leap? That you can change for the better by taking really small steps.

“Habits are the compound interest of self-improvement.” 

Clear says you have to improve only one percent every day. He compares the 1% improvement and 1% decline through a graph.

Graph from the book ‘Atomic Habits’ by James Clear

“Maybe there are people who can achieve incredible success overnight. I don’t know any of them and I’m certainly not one of them.” 

I understand what Clear is saying. When this year started, I was overweight. Over this year, I have lost about 13 pounds. All thanks to small consistent changes.

Like having fruit and oats for breakfast. Not eating out more than once a week etc. Walking daily for a certain distance.

These small actions which seem almost minimal compounded over many many days bringing me closer to my healthier self.

“Unfortunately, the slow pace of transformation also makes it easy to let a bad habit slide.” 

Because the transformation is slow, we are quick to abandon good habits or adopt bad ones.

That’s the struggle folks!

This book will help you make consistent changes for exceptional results.

10 Books You Should Read If You Want to Change Your Life

Your bag of f*cks is limited.

This is the only book I own that has profanity in the title. But somehow it’s not outrageous or wrong.

I mean, Manson is using it for a higher purpose.

He tells us that we all have limited f*cks to give. And we should give them only for things that really matter.

“Life is essentially an endless series of problems. The solution to one problem is merely the creation of another.” 

He is right when he calls life ‘an endless series of problems’. When we are single, the problem is we don’t have love. When we find love, the problem becomes us having to put up with our partner’s quirks.

Problems change but they will always be there. Choose which struggles you want to go through in life, Mark advises us.

“Don’t just sit there. Do something.” 

The age-old advice. Quit thinking and start doing. Doing what, you ask?

Anything. Be it small. Even if you want to get healthy by eating an apple every day. Or kick off your writing career by writing 100 words each day.

This book provides a unique perspective, and I recommend it to everyone.

10 Books You Should Read If You Want to Change Your Life

Lessons from the US Navy SEALs.

This book has all the ingredients to help you become a great leader.

But I don’t lead anything, I hear you say.

We all lead something. Whether it’s our house, our family, our work team. If nothing, it’s our body.

When something goes wrong, we find someone or something to blame. Instead, we should be the ones taking ownership of everything as a leader.

“Although discipline demands control and asceticism, it actually results in freedom.” 

As someone who enjoys unstructured time and activities, like letting my child do whatever (as long as it is not harmful to anyone else or the child), sometimes it takes effort to see the importance of discipline.

But it’s true. Discipline offers us freedom. The authors give the example of getting up early. It might seem hard to do so, but it gives us more free time.

“Waiting for the 100 percent right and certain solution leads to delay, indecision, and an inability to execute.” 

The author’s thoughts on the non-existence of ‘100 percent right’ decisions remind me of my mom. The only reason why I make quick purchasing decisions is because my mom trained me to do so. Yeah, I am an indecisive mess.

All in all, a great book that’ll help you take ownership and make the right decisions in your life.

10 Books You Should Read If You Want to Change Your Life

Tick tock! Time to change how you look at the clocks.

This book has changed my life for the better.

Stefan Klein tells us all about time. He starts from the internal body rhythm and the creation of clocks.

He goes on to discuss the relation of time to movement, memory, and emotions. The same amount of time passes quickly or slowly for us based on what we are feeling.

“People who use their minds to the fullest throughout life have a good chance of growing old with an intact memory…” 

Keep using your mind if you want to grow old with a good memory, the author tells us.

I find the case study of the man who has lost memory and sense of time because of his brain operation, the most fascinating. Every time you go to meet him, he will meet you like he is meeting you for the first time, Kelin says.

The author gives us a new way to be productive. He wants us to honor our biological body rhythm instead of letting clocks rule us.

“When we are free of any obligations, the days lose their meaning.” 

Stefan Klein has taught me how to slow down or speed up time. You can also read my detailed review of this book here.

Honestly, I feel bad that this book is not well known.

10 Books You Should Read If You Want to Change Your Life

Find out your habit tendency!

Why are we not able to stick to our habit goals?

Rubin tells us about the unique styles that exist in different people. She describes 4 ways people respond to internal or external expectations.

  1. Upholders: Honor both internal and external expectations. Struggle without structure.

  2. Questioners: Research-driven. They want to find the reasons for doing something.

  3. Obligers: They are more motivated to make others happy.

  4. Rebels: Counteract all expectations. Will only do something because they want to.

This is an interesting framework to understand ourselves better and strategize accordingly. For example: Obligers can find external motivators, like tying up gym time with a friend.

“When we do stumble, it’s important not to judge ourselves harshly.” 

Rubin goes on to give us many different ways of adopting good habits.

Even if you do fail, it’s okay. Don’t judge yourself, the author says.

“There’s a great satisfaction in knowing that we’ve made good use of our days, that we’ve lived up to our expectations of ourselves.” 

Rubin’s book will help you understand yourself better allowing you to make habits in a way that is custom tailored to you.

10 Books You Should Read If You Want to Change Your Life

The secret sauce of success is grit.

I remember when I stumbled across Angela Duckworth’s TED talk. It was fascinating to hear about her research that proved ‘grit’ to be the predictor of success.

This book explains the same in detail.

What is grit?

Grit is having the passion and perseverance to keep going towards your goal.

I mean, the only difference between a winner and a loser is that the winner never quits.

“Enthusiasm is common. Endurance is rare.” 

Gritty people are not those who make lofty promises and then do nothing. Gritty people are those who keep going no matter what. They endure storms and failures. But they never stop.

“One form of perseverance is the daily discipline of trying to do things better than we did yesterday.” 

To persevere, we can use discipline. Discipline will help us improve day by day.

This book will teach you all about the 4-letter-word needed for success.

10 Books You Should Read If You Want to Change Your Life

The recipe for achievement.

Grant tells us to become a “creature of discomfort.”

Learning new things and failing at them is uncomfortable. But we have to face it if we want to gain that skill.

“With the right opportunity and motivation to learn, anyone can build the skills to achieve greater things.” 

Even if we have to start over again and again, the author tells us not to give up. There is improvement happening with every do-over. Success takes time. Don’t give up yet!

“The best way to learn something is to teach it.” 

When we share what we learn, we get better at it.

Grant also puts forth a unique way of processing ideas. He calls it ‘brainwriting’.

Instead of having loud brainstorming sessions, allow people to work on their ideas individually. Then bring the ideas together and discuss their practicality.

This is an interesting book that will help you embrace discomfort and grow upward as a result.

10 Books You Should Read If You Want to Change Your Life

Crack the code of talent.

I think by now we have established the fact that talent is a result of practice, not innate attributes.

Coyle gives us a three-step process for becoming talented.

  1. Deep practice: Continuous practice of the skill.

  2. Ignition: An event that gives us motivation.

  3. Master Coaching: Learning under a great teacher.

“Deep practice feels a bit like exploring a dark and unfamiliar room. You start slowly, you bump into furniture, stop, think, and start again.” 

The most interesting theory that Coyle gives us is how the skill gets wired into our neurons through the protein myelin.

The more we do something, the stronger our neural circuit of that certain pathway becomes. And more myelin wraps around our neurons.

“Struggle is not optional — it’s neurologically required…” 

I think this book makes a great case for practice based on neuroscience.

10 Books You Should Read If You Want to Change Your Life

Kill distractions by understanding yourself.

Face your discomfort and distractions will have no power over you.


Our default state is discomfort. To escape that, we use a variety of excuses to avoid work and keep doing stuff that gives us instant gratification. Like watching Netflix or scrolling social media.

“Dissatisfaction and discomfort dominate our brain’s default state, but we can use them to motivate us instead of defeat us.” 

Eyal goes on to give a variety of ways to help us tackle our internal triggers and external triggers. Those who distract us from our goals.

He tells us to make pacts, a way to make yourself accountable. You can do that with a colleague or a family member. There are also websites like the one the author signed up on.

Since he knew his focus mate would be waiting, he got online at the scheduled time.

While his focus mate, Martin studied anatomy, the author focused on his writing.

“Effort pacts make us less likely to abandon the task at hand.” 

It’s true that our emotions and our phones distract us from changing our lives. This book will give you the tools to manage that.

10 Books You Should Read If You Want to Change Your Life

The need for opportunities.

Gladwell explores multiple reasons for success in people.

From birth dates, and cultural backgrounds to the opportunities and amount of practice.

“People don’t rise from nothing…” 

While we can learn, grow, and become successful, factors that are not in our control have their effects.

Gladwell gives many real-life examples to back up his analysis. For example, the disparity between students from low-income households and those from middle and high-income households was reduced. How? The school offered additional coaching in the summer.

Gladwell argues that if there were more opportunities, there would be more successful people in the world.

“Hard work is a prison sentence only if it does not have meaning.” 

Despite the role of luck and chance, hard work still has its value. Gladwell touches on the success stories of people who came from tough backgrounds but went on to prove everyone wrong.

This book presents fascinating arguments on how someone becomes successful.

Summing Up…

Since we are here changing our lives, I wanted to summarize the lessons from the books above in 5 points:

1.Start now

The success wouldn’t be handed on a plate to you. Neither will you succeed just by thinking about it. Yes, chance has a role but you have to take the first step.

2. Be consistent

Once you start, don’t give up. Use motivation, grit, and meaning to keep you going.

3. The power of small habits

You don’t have to make big jumps to change your life. Take small steps but don’t abandon them.

4. Talent is learned

The secret to talent is practice. And practice matters more than natural gifts. Practice for 10,000 hours and build up your myelin.

5. Struggle is a part of life

Don’t get discouraged if you encounter failure or roadblocks. They will come your way regardless of what path you take in life.


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If you enjoyed these book recommendations, check out the rest of my book lists on my blog-

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