Today’s blog will be for books to read before 2021 ends. These are books that are my favourites that have impacted my life and books that will impact your life for the better.
I’ve grouped the books into categories to make them easier to navigate. The groups are Self Help, Personal Growth books, Money & Productivity, Creativity, Spirituality and Others.
So I shall start with Self Help.
One of the books I love the most is “The Four Agreements” by Don Miguel Ruiz. It is an excellent book.
It is easy to read, and it’s not too long. There are four main agreements:
- Always be impeccable with your word.
- Don’t take anything personally.
- Don’t make assumptions.
- Always do your best.
Those four agreements, he goes deep into them and why they’re essential. And because there’s only four, they’re effortless to remember, and they’re life mantras. I remind myself of them all the time, and they’ve made my life a lot easier.
The second book I suggest for you to read is “A New Earth” by Eckhart Tolle. This one is a little difficult to read, but it is vital because it teaches you how to recognise and be aware of your ego and detach yourself from your ego’s wants.
The ego in you is the part that wants more and more and more, the part that will never be satisfied, the part that gives into fear and all of these things that are not helping you. This book teaches you how to recognise that ego and not be a victim to your ego.
The third book I want to recommend is “Atomic Habits” by James Clear. The book you want to read if you’re going to be consistent with your habits this year. It talks about how and why habits are formed and how you can use that information to make or break any routine that you want.
The next book I want to recommend is “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success” by Carol Dweck. This book is all about the growth mindset: what the growth mindset is, compared to what a fixed mindset is and why you want to have a growth mindset and help you in life.
So much of why certain people excel and grow over others is because they have a different mindset. This book goes deep into what makes up a growth mindset. The next book that will also be so helpful for your perspective is “The Success Principles” by Jack Canfield.
This book contains several lessons, values, and parables on why people are successful. It has so many success stories. It’s one of the first self-help books I read, and it’s such a good book to lay the proper foundation for your mindset and your habits moving forward.
The next book you should read is a classic called “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People” by Stephen Covey. The book has been on the bestsellers list for decades, so it is a crowd favourite.
It is one of those books that everyone should read. The lessons are so innovative, and they’re so impactful; they’re still relevant to this day. Following that, another book you must read is “The Power of Now” by Eckhart Tolle.
I used to say “Eckhart Tolle”, I don’t know why. Someone corrected me and said it’s “Eckhart TOLL”. Anyway, this book is another classic, and it’s all about being mindful of the present moment, why it is so important, why the present moment is the only real thing you have.
The past and the future are just illusions in your mind. After reading this, understanding, this concept deeply will release so much stress and worry from your life. It will just help you be happier and more joyful in the present moment of your life.
Another book you should read is “The Slight Edge” by Jeff Olson. I’ve recommended this one so many times because it’s so good. This book is about the power of compounding effects, compounding your actions, compounding habits.
And the lesson is: If you do a small thing each day, a tiny little positive thing, the effects will compound over time so that you make significant changes. And it’s such a powerful lesson that is so key to success.
The last book in this category is “The Power of Vulnerability” by Brené Brown. Brené Brown has that Ted talks on vulnerability. She’s written many excellent books since then. And this book, The Power of Vulnerability, I had in audiobook form because I think it’s her giving lectures on vulnerability.
And vulnerability is something that people need to talk about more because once you realise how important it is to be vulnerable, you develop better relationships in your life. You become more confident in expressing yourself.
You also get better at taking risks at being brave, and those are things that you need to be successful and grow in life. All right, moving onto the category of Money & Productivity books. The first book I recommend is called “The Richest Man in Babylon”.
The Richest Man in Babylon is a book written in 1926 by George S. Clason. It provides financial advice through the lens of parables set in the ancient city of Babylon, which initially stood around 8000 years ago.
I just enjoyed it so much because I enjoy metaphors and stories. Rather than being a practical book, I feel like it’s a book that uses stories to engrain precious lessons in your mind.
The next book I recommend will help your money mindset, but this one is more modern. So this one’s called “You Are a Badass at Making Money” by Jen Sincero. This book is so, so helpful in helping you rewrite your limiting beliefs about money.
I felt like my mindset changed so much. It transformed my attitude about money after reading this book. I think it’s something that more people should read. We should all be more financially savvy, financially literate, and have a healthier money mindset.
The next book I recommend is “Getting Things Done” by David Allen. This book is for you if you need help in productivity if you have so many things you want to do, but you don’t know what to do first, organise your tasks, and have a system of getting things done.
This book helped me prioritise things. The author lays out a system that is so helpful: What emails to tackle first? What tasks to tackle first? It’s so beneficial for people who lack organisation, and even if you partially relatively organised, you’ll learn a lot from the process laid out in this book.
The next book is another favourite of mine: “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up” by Marie Kondo. It inspired my whole journey through minimalism and decluttering, learning to keep those things that spark joy and let go of what I don’t need anymore.
Let go, say goodbye and thank you. “Thank u, next” to anything that is holding me back. This book applies to material things, but it can also apply to non-physical stuff in your life. I put it under productivity because I feel that one can be more productive with clear space, have one life together, and have this KonMari mindset.
I am moving on to books on creativity now. The first book I would recommend is called “The War of Art” by Steven Pressfield. Steven Pressfield is such a great author for creatives. He talks about the war we have as creatives against resistance, procrastination, whatever that thing is that holds us back from doing our work, from creating, from taking action.
So that’s what “The War of Art” is about. It also has helped me developed a more robust mindset in my work, career, and creating. Another book on creativity that is more uplifting and inspirational is “Big Magic” by Elizabeth Gilbert.
Elizabeth Gilbert is one of my favourite writers. This is one of my favourite books, and it just makes you see creativity from such a magical point of view. This book is for everyone, not just people who do creativity for their job because all humans are creative.
She talks about creativity as a hobby, giving you joy, enhancing your life, and it’s just a fantastic book. The final book in the category of creativity is more of a practical process-type book. It’s “The Artist’s Way” by Julia Cameron.
This book is worth reading if you are creative and you want to tap deeper into your creativity because there are journaling prompts, exercises, a weekly system – I think it’s a 12-week program that you go through.
And this is the book where morning pages originated. Julia Cameron introduced the idea of morning pages, to write three pages of longhand stream of consciousness journaling every morning to help open up that channel to creativity.
This book suggests to the user a great system. I did it, I think, two years ago. If you want more of a systematic approach to tapping into more creativity, read The Artist’s Way. Now let’s jump on to books on spirituality and beyond.
The first book you want to read is “The Untethered Soul” by Michael A. Singer. That is a book about your soul, your spirit, and it also helps you recognise who you are outside, the surface level you vs.
The deep core of yourself. It’s just one of those books on spirituality that I enjoyed. The next book I recommend is “The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success” by Deepak Chopra. I honestly recommend anything by Deepak Chopra, and my favourite way to read his books is by listening to his audiobooks, listening to him speaks because I am such a big fan of him.
I love his voice. He makes me feel so calm, so zen. He seems so wise, and he’s just a classic. The next book I want to recommend intertwines health with spirituality. It’s called “The Anatomy of the Spirit” by Carolyn Myss.
I honestly had two books in mind for this slot in the 20 books, so you’ll get an extra book, another similar book in the same realm. It’s called “You Can Heal Your Life” by Louise Hay.
Those are two books that I highly recommend if you are going through any health issues, especially chronic health issues that doctors and Western medicine can’t explain. The idea is: Many chronic issues, health issues, stem from emotional or spiritual pain and trauma.
And this is an area where I know not everyone agrees with or understands because there’s so much we still don’t understand about science and health and medicine, right? But I think it’s fascinating because these are stories of real people who have healed in spiritual ways or just different ways than you would typically hear.
The last group on this list, which makes the 20th book, is astrology. It’s called “The Inner Sky” by Steven Forrest, and this is one of my favourite books that I’ve read because I love astrology.
It was the intro book to help me dive deeper into what all of this stuff means, the stars, the planets, your birth chart. And that one is more of a personal interest book. But if you are interested in astrology, that is the book to start with because it’s just so fascinating.
There is still time to read these books before 2021 ends
All right, so those are 20 of my favourites/ most impactful books you should read before 2021 ends. If you want more books, I have a whole page on my website listing my favourite books, and I try to organise them into different categories.
And I also really love audiobooks. I didn’t get to talk about the audiobooks that I loved because I chose books that I thought would change your life and help you change your mindset, all that stuff.
I honestly enjoy listening to memoirs, such as Ali Wong’s audiobook: “Dear Girls”, Kevin Hart’s audiobook, Trevor Noah’s book, JVN – Jonathan Van Ness’s book, the guy from Queer Eye.
I love listening to something funny and a life story while I’m driving. So I’ll list those recs down below as well. I hope that this is a good list for you to start with, and I wish you all the best in the rest of 2021.
Here is a beautiful motivational video by Jim Rohn to inspire you
I hope these books help you expand your mind, change your life. I also hope you make it a daily habit to read consistently, whether it’s a chapter each day or a chapter each week, because consistency is what matters most.