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10 Inspiring Books Recommended by Brené Brown That Will Help You Be Your Best Self

Learn about courage, love, and doing something stupid

10 Inspiring Books Recommended by Brené Brown That Will Help You Be Your Best Self

These books will give you wings.

Brené Brown is the author of 6 number one New York Times best-selling books. That tells you something about her accolade as a writer.

Each of her recommended books will offer you something new. But all of them will help you fly to your destiny.

Time to go through a brief overview of each.

10 Inspiring Books Recommended by Brené Brown That Will Help You Be Your Best Self

What does the world’s second-largest charity organization do? In this book, Melinda tells us about her time spent in philanthropic endeavors.

With her husband, Bill Gates, she founded the Bill and Melinda Foundation which focuses on global health, and eradicating poverty.

“If you want to lift up humanity, empower women.”

She tells us about the various initiatives taken by the foundation. Women’s education, access to family planning, fight against child marriage, and children’s vaccines.

She also talks about the unpaid labor of women and the wage gap.

“Wisdom isn’t about accumulating more facts; it’s about understanding big truths in a deeper way.”

Melinda shares her realizations alongside her humanitarian work.

Women’s education is a vehicle for good health. Educated women make well-informed mothers. It is a positive cycle.

“An abusive culture, to me, is any culture that needs to single out and exclude a group.”

The epilogue of the book focuses on the need for women to come together and uplift each other.

10 Inspiring Books Recommended by Brené Brown That Will Help You Be Your Best Self

Lessons in management and success by Time’s 2019 businessman of the year.

Robert Iger took over Disney in 2005. The times were tough and the company was struggling.

He went on to make some controversial decisions like buying Pixar and launching a streaming service. But all that paid off well.

“Optimism. One of the most important qualities of a good leader is optimism, a pragmatic enthusiasm for what can be achieved.”

This book details his journey from the low level of the organization to becoming CEO.

Iger gives us a multitude of lessons on being a great manager and leader. Respecting others, being humble, and managing time. Another important part of being a businessman is to innovate.

He also takes us inside the mind of the CEO by showing us what he is thinking all day long.

“Innovate or die, and there’s no innovation if you operate out of fear of the new or untested.”

This book is an important read for all entrepreneurs and business people out there.

If you need another reason to get this book, let me tell you that it is one of the few business books recommended by Bill Gates.

10 Inspiring Books Recommended by Brené Brown That Will Help You Be Your Best Self

Think big, start small.

Many successful businesses today were ‘stupid’ ideas of yesterday.

The author tells us to believe in ourselves and our stupid, far-fetched ideas.

“Life is too short not to start something stupid.”

Norton says that life is more than ‘commuting, working, eating, surfing the Internet, sleeping and watching TV.’ Life is meant to have purpose and projects that bring us excitement and passion.

“Opportunities will come and go, but if you do nothing about them, so will you.”

But it is so tough. When we think of our idea, we think of the capital needed, the people we need to hire, the people we have to contact. It all overwhelms us.

Norton has an answer for that. He asks us to break our big idea into smaller chunks.

Now we can focus on doing one chunk at a time. If we fail at one step, we should keep doing it over and over again until we nail it.

This book motivates us to get rid of fear and procrastination and chase our stupid dreams.

10 Inspiring Books Recommended by Brené Brown That Will Help You Be Your Best Self

Embrace imperfection and get started!

Honegger had a business idea. She wanted to help Ugandan women sell jewelry. It was a leap of faith.

Her idea turned out to be successful. Through it, she helped many people reach the markets they only dreamed of.

“Every person dies, but not every person truly lives.”

Today she is a successful entrepreneur, author, and podcast host.

Her book tells us to go for it. For whatever idea we have, whatever goal we have. It is better than living in regret grappling with the fact that you never tried in the first place.

In short, ‘imperfect courage’ is better than ‘no courage’ at all.

In the case of Honegger, she decided to start selling jewelry from the spare bedroom in her house. It was imperfect. But it was the right step toward her goal.

This book will help you take that leap and put your entrepreneurial idea into action.

10 Inspiring Books Recommended by Brené Brown That Will Help You Be Your Best Self

Don’t know how to do something? You just have to start.

How can you learn something? By doing it. By trying again and again.

The title of the book is the piece of advice that the author’s mother gave to her.

‘Everything is figureoutable’, she said.

“Every pro starts off as an amateur.”

Whether it is fixing something around the house or learning a new skill. Everything is achievable. Only IF we start.

“There are two types of pain you will go through in life: the pain of discipline and the pain of regret. Discipline weighs ounces, while regret weighs tons.”

Why don’t we?

We give ourselves excuses. I am not good at this. I am bad at learning etc etc.

But in today’s digital world, we don’t have any excuse. We can watch a YouTube video or read an easy How-To blog to do almost anything.

This book will make you fix the light bulb you’ve been putting off.

10 Inspiring Books Recommended by Brené Brown That Will Help You Be Your Best Self

A glimpse into the white house.

This memoir is by the ex-First Lady, Michelle Obama, the wife of two times elected US president, Barack Obama.

We have all seen the glossy press photos of their family. But how is life really inside the White House?

This book will show you that.

Michelle shares her story starting from her childhood, her education, her work, meeting Obama, and life in the White House. She also shares her humanitarian efforts.

For Michelle ‘Becoming’ is an endless journey of growth.

She laments the traditional question, What do you want to be when you grow up?

“Now I think it’s one of the most useless questions an adult can ask a child — What do you want to be when you grow up? As if growing up is finite. As if at some point you become something and that’s the end.”

Even if you have political disagreements with the Obamas, I think the book offers an interesting perspective.

10 Inspiring Books Recommended by Brené Brown That Will Help You Be Your Best Self

Too many resources are never the answer.

‘If only I had that…’, sometimes we say in self-pity.

We think we will achieve our goals only if we have a lot of resources. It turns out that is not the case.

Sonenshein tells us about various organizations and people who did more using less.


Everything we have is a resource. But it requires serious work on our part to make it play that role.

“…almost anything — tangible and intangible — has potential as a resource, but that to become anything valuable requires action.”

Honestly, this quote reminded me of the time I filmed my products by supporting my phone through random stuff around the house because I didn’t have a tripod.

The author tells us about two approaches towards resources:

  1. Chasing: Running behind more resources

  2. Stretching: Embracing what we have and using it to its full potential

“By adopting a stretching mind-set, we can reach extraordinary potential with what we already have.”

I am sure, you have guessed which mindset is better of the two.

10 Inspiring Books Recommended by Brené Brown That Will Help You Be Your Best Self

Trade self-comparison for self-love.

Kristin Neff is a professor at the University of Texas in the Department of Educational Psychology.

Neff and her colleagues have done extensive research on self-compassion. She tells us that self-compassion can help achieve emotional well-being and contentment in life.

What is self-compassion?

It means being kind to ourselves in the face of suffering.

We are constantly evaluating ourselves and comparing ourselves with others. As a result, we beat ourselves up for not doing good enough.

“Painful feelings are, by their very nature, temporary. They will weaken over time as long as we don’t prolong or amplify them through resistance or avoidance.”

The author tells us that the human experience is meant to be imperfect. When we allow ourselves to have those feelings and gently talk to ourselves, we practice self-compassion.

“Our successes and failures come and go — they neither define us nor do they determine our worthiness.”

Through multiple exercises, this book helps us give ourselves the love we deserve.

10 Inspiring Books Recommended by Brené Brown That Will Help You Be Your Best Self

The journey to one’s destiny.

I am sure that you are living under a rock if you haven’t heard of this book. With ‎almost 3 million votes on Goodreads, you can gather the extent of its popularity.

It’s a fiction novel by Brazilian author Paulo Coelho which was originally written in Portuguese. It was translated and published in English in 1993.

“…when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.”

I read it when I was quite young. Some of my peers loved it. On the other hand, I did not.

The style is a bit too symbolic for my taste.

Coelho tells us the story of a young boy, Santiago who dreams of a treasure and sets out to find it. The story is based on Santiago’s quest.

He encounters many different characters on his path and learns many lessons. He also falls in love.

The theme of the book is following one’s heart and ‘Personal Legend’. It combines spiritual and mystical concepts with fables to communicate this.

Santiago’s Personal Legend was to find the treasure he dreamt of.

10 Inspiring Books Recommended by Brené Brown That Will Help You Be Your Best Self

From party boy to serving the world.

Scott Harrison tells his story in this book. He was the son of devout catholic parents. But life took him down another path.

He ended up in the New York nightclub scene garnering expensive sponsorship deals.

He was quite literally paid to drink. Hard drugs were also in the picture.

Through a series of events, he ended up on a trip to Africa. There he learned the meaning of compassion and serving others.

On this trip, he learned how many issues like lack of medical facilities or loss of schooling happen due to lack of clean water.

“When a school in Bangladesh or the Democratic Republic of the Congo gets water and latrines, teenage girls don’t have to skip class during the days they’re menstruating.”

This led him to launch ‘Charity:water’, a non-profit organization that works on providing clean water.

He became a better person, father, and husband.

Harrison’s story is sure to inspire people to do better in their lives by committing themselves to a cause higher than worldly pleasures.


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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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