Best Books For Personal Development: Top 10 Books For 2019 – Honest Review And Comparisons

Updated: 5/1/19

There are many different kinds of books, but none compare to the ones that have a lasting impact upon my life. Granted I do enjoy good literature and fiction in general, but I love learning when it comes to bettering myself. That’s why today I will be reviewing the top 10 best books for personal development this year!

There is something nostalgic about improve oneself that I find incredibly attractive. When I think about great theologians, artists, intellectuals, scientists and geniuses, I immediately think about Albert Einstein, Benjamin Franklin, Nikola Tesla, or John Adams.

All of these men had something in common… They read extensively.

It is my hope that the love of reading will become an avid part of your daily habits, and that through the following books, one good habit of reading will lead to developing more good habits.

With that, here are my top ten best books for personal development.

Note: All of the books are listed in no particular order, and a few are more recent. I am basing my reviews on relevancy and on other people’s ratings.

Best Books For Personal Development List:

Price Table:

$ = $100 and under
$$ = Between $100-$250
$$$ = Between $250-$500
$$$$ – $500 and up

1. The Power of Positive Thinking by Dr. Norman Vincent Peale

  • Average Customer Rank: 4.2/5
    Best Books For Personal Development - The Power of Positive Thinking

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  • Price: $
  • Cheapest Place to Buy: Amazon.com
  • Available in: Paperback, Hardcover, Kindle, and Audible

Internationally acclaimed, Dr. Norman presents sound advice on how to overcome obstacles and transform your life by using positive thinking. It centers on using positive thinking to promote real change in a person’s life.

This book is less focused on solving problems and more centered on improving peoples’ lives as a whole advocating that with positive thinking, every area of one’s life suddenly has greater potential to improve.

Most people submitted negative reviews because they didn’t pay attention to the size or version they had ordered, others disagreed with some religious statements or opinions.

In Conclusion: My research has brought me to the conclusion that this is a great book that should be read for one purpose, to improve oneself with a positive mindset. I recommend this one!

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2. Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life…And Maybe the World by William H. McRaven

  • Average Customer Rank: 4.7/5
    Best Books For Personal Development - Make Your Bed

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  • Price: $
  • Cheapest Place to Buy: Amazon.com
  • Available in: Audio CD, Hardcover, Kindle, and Audiobook

William H. McRaven is a Navy Admiral. He gave a speech to a graduating class at the University of Austin Texas and that speech reached over 10 million views online.

Numerous individuals came forward testifying that his speech was incredibly helpful to them, and that his book following that speech did not disappoint.

Inspired, he went on to write this incredible book offering practical wisdom, life experience, and simple actions that can change the world around us for the better.

Not much criticism to offer on this book, anyone who wasn’t particularly fond of this book usually advocated that the advice was something they had heard before, with no real negative aspects to list.

I think this is a terrific book for anyone looking to start making noticeable changes in their life in simple ways and no doubt be inspired upon hearing William’s backstory.

It should go without saying that I recommend this book!

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3. Developing the Leader Within You by John C. Maxwell

  • Average Customer Rank: 4.6/5
    Best Books For Personal Development - Developing the LEADER Within You

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  • Price: $
  • Cheapest Place to Buy: Amazon.com
  • Available in: Paperback, Hardcover, and Audible

My dad originally introduced me to this book, an absolute must for those looking to become the leaders we were always meant to be!

This book is for anyone who wants to lead or who are already leading others. (Managers, bosses, fathers, mothers, etc.)

Looking for a book that will help make you the best boss ever? This is the book for you!

Unsure of yourself when it comes to inspiring others? John makes short work of that uncertainty.

Those who gave criticism on this book said that it felt very “filled” in some areas and that it was difficult to apply into their lives at times. As with any book, people interpreted this book differently and didn’t come out with a positive impression.

In Conclusion: My interpretation is that they missed the point and real value of this book entirely. Give this book a chance, with a “4.6/5” rating, I’m sure you will find it valuable!

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4. The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy

  • Average Customer Rank: 4.8/5
     Best Books For Personal Development - The Compound Effect

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  • Price: $
  • Cheapest Place to Buy: Amazon.com
  • Available in: Paperback, Hardcover, Kindle, Audio CD and Audiobook

This book is ideal for anyone looking to increase, track and manage their success in focused, goal based actions.

What makes this book so great is it’s way it approaches success and taking action in general.

In Conclusion: Tracking, goal making, executing, that’s what this book is about and the reviews alone should indicate how successful this book communicates this.

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5. Awaken the Giant Within : How to Take Immediate Control of Your Mental, Emotional, Physical and Financial Destiny! by Tony Robbins

  • Average Customer Rank: 4.5/5
    Best Books For Personal Development - AWAKEN THE GIANT WITHIN

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  • Price: $
  • Cheapest Place to Buy: Amazon.com
  • Available in: Paperback, Hardcover, Kindle, Audio CD and Audiobook

Tony Robbins is practically legendary for his ability to help people overcome obstacles and achieve success with mindset and thinking that supports them.

More than simply a way to achieve financial success, the principles discussed by Tony are easily applied to any area of life and that has shown true with the reviews this books has received.

I would discount any negative reviews as none of them are fair or informed. Most are people upset that the audio book was not as long, while others stated that they had heard it all before while not giving any examples.

In Conclusion: I think everyone should read a book by Tony at least once in their life. He is internationally recognized as an absolute wizard of the mind.

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6. You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life by Jen Sincero

  • Average Customer Rank: 4.6/5
    Best Books For Personal Development - You are a BADASS

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  • Price: $
  • Cheapest Place to Buy: Amazon.com
  • Available in: Paperback, Hardcover, Kindle, MP3 CD and Audiobook

Jen Sincero is a very “relevant” writer, incorporating modern terms and some colorful language at times to get her points across. Any millennial or novice to financial growth should read this book.

While the rating would indicate a “good read” if you will, many have said that this book is very basic and is less of a “how-to” book, and more of a motivational book to break any bad image of yourself.

As others have said, this book is very mindset driven, and gives credit where it may or may not be due.

Some people dealing with depression or negative mindset found this to be a bit of a disappointment as it stressed that the individual is responsible for whether their life is “good” or “bad”, and that if bad things are happening to you, they are your choice and that you are attracting those things to you.

This is very similar to T. Harv Eker’s books or even Tony Robbins’ books, unfortunately, many people didn’t feel that this book stood out enough for them, consequently recommending it for a beginner in terms of financial education.

In Conclusion: With that said, if you are a millennial and are just getting started learning about mindset and financial education, I think you will find this book extremely helpful as most found it a great way to see themselves in a more empowered and centered light.

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7. The Miracle Morning: The Not-So-Obvious Secret Guaranteed to Transform Your Life (Before 8AM) by Hal Elrod and Robert Kiyosaki

  • Average Customer Rank: 4.6/5
    Best Books For Personal Development - The Miracle Morning

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  • Price: $
  • Cheapest Place to Buy: Amazon.com
  • Available in: Paperback, Hardcover, Kindle, and Audiobook

Hal Elrod, walking miracle and author, created a book so powerful that even my personal idol Robert Kiyosaki has called him a “genius”. Robert has also stated that this very book has become a part of his morning routine.

This book is an international best-seller with outstanding reviews. Don’t be fooled by the 4.6, that is an average spanning thousands.

My dad has mentioned this book to me several times and I know it has helped him in many ways.

In Conclusion: I am sure this book will become a life changer for you if read and applied! My dad and my personal idols praise this book for it’s solid advice and applicable life style changes.

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8. The 10X Rule: The Only Difference Between Success and Failure by Grant Cardone

  • Average Customer Rank: 4.6/5
    Best Books For Personal Development - The 10x Rule

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  • Price: $
  • Cheapest Place to Buy: Amazon.com
  • Available in: Paperback, Hardcover, Kindle, and Audiobook

Grant Cordone is one of the most successful men on the planet. He is a very prominent CEO and his book will not disappoint.

How this book will impact you is greatly dependent upon where you are in life and how far you have gotten in your financial learning.

In Conclusion: Some people didn’t find it groundbreaking for them ,while others have said it was life changing for them. Give this one a try, I think it is worth the read.

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9. The Slight Edge: Turning Simple Disciplines into Massive Success and Happiness by Jeff Olson and John David Mann

  • Average Customer Rank: 4.8/5
    Best Books For Personal Development - Edge

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  • Price: $
  • Cheapest Place to Buy: Amazon.com
  • Available in: Paperback, and Hardcover

This is one of the books I think everyone should read at least once in their life, or at least a book like this one.

While some have said “The Slight Edge” drags on for a bit too long, and that the concepts discussed aren’t anything new, I think these individuals are rating it based on how it impacted them, versus who this book is actually for.

This is a book for anyone and everyone looking to improve their lives by changing their habits and lifestyles. Doing things “different” isn’t enough, and many have claimed that the information Jeff presented truly helped them!

In Conclusion: I think this book is worth a shot, but it is probably for the beginner to intermediate learner on the subject of money.

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10. Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy by David D. Burns

  • Average Customer Rank: 4.4/5
    Best Books For Personal Development - Feeling Good

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  • Price: $
  • Cheapest Place to Buy: Amazon.com
  • Available in: Paperback, MM Paperback, Kindle, MP3 CD, and Audiobook

Feeling depressed, worried, anxious? Have bad habits of procrastination when working? This book is for you!

Numerous individuals who were suffering from depression and other ailments said this book was extremely simple, but made incredible impact on their lives.

In Conclusion: Don’t be fooled by the reviews, simple, easy to understand and start using. This book is for anyone and is at an incredible price. (They are all at an unbelievable price really)

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Average Customer Rating

This is a solid list of books. With a great average rank and “best seller” status shared among them, I highly recommend picking one of these up! Maybe it’s just the cover, but I really like, “The Slight Edge”, especially. 🙂

Leave a comment below and feel free to email me with any questions! As always, I will get back to you asap!

Best regards,

Jacob Highley


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Jacob Highley

Jacob is the featured author on FSB. He is a seasoned Internet Marketer and Financial Expert. Some of his professional experience includes, Real Estate, Stocks, Business Management, Crypto Currencies, and he is a veteran Online Blogger. He is an avid reader and investor. He has a passion for helping others succeed and overcome obstacles in their lives. He believes that "Knowledge Is Power", and that people have the ability to do anything they set their minds to. You can read more about him, Here.

  • Lawrence says:

    Hi Jacob,
    What a brilliant list of books.
    I’ve read a few of them but there are a few here that I will definitely look into.
    I particularly like “Make Your Bed” – so easy to start the day off with an achievement to set the tone.
    You are a badass dude! 🙂
    All the best,

  • Jessica says:

    I am impressed with the books that you have listed here. Some of them seem very interesting to me and would help benefit my life. I am drawn to “You are a Bad Ass”…that one sounds like it would be blunt and to the point. Thank you for this selection.

  • Heather says:

    Thank you for this list of awesome self-help books. I love to cultivate habits and thought processes that enrich my life and lead to more success in life, love and finances. The Miracle Morning looks really interesting to me. Thank you for your real-life review of these books and letting us know what to really expect not just what the back cover says.

  • CT says:

    I like the book “The Power of Positive Thinking by Dr. Norman Vincent Peale“. I think everyone should have positive thinking in the rest of life. For me, everyone say me I am always negative that make my life always unhappy. It’s also difficult to overcome obstacles and transform my life to be more happy. I don’t really satisfy the situation of myself now. I want to get change and improve myself. This book appear in the right time and right situation. Thank you for you sharing.

  • Donald says:

    Thank you Jacob for the books you have recommended. I’m not much of a reader, but when I do I look for a positive read. But with winter coming and the shorter days ahead, I am going to put forth more effort in reading some good books. I think I will start with The Power of Positive Thinking. Thank you

  • Martin says:

    Hi Jacob,

    A great list, with some authors with whom I was not familiar – thanks for pulling it together..!

    As Lawrence said in an earlier comment, I like the sound of ‘Make your bed‘ – having done my National Service years ago I generally like books that come from people with a military background!

    As a follower of Zig Ziglar and Tony Robbins I can absolutely confirm the benefit of getting your mind together – it helps you deal with all sorts of everyday problems, not just with achieving your bigger life goals.



  • Thanks for the great reviews! Personal Development books are the best! I feel they are great for young people to read so they can understand why they feel the way they feel and use that to help them develop as an adult. I love tony robbins so I am intrigued about his book! I may give that one a try 🙂

  • Mariette says:

    Very interesting list of books. I think it is so important to read motivational books, we certainly all can do with some inspiration at times. Will definitely get some if these books, like the Miracle Morning!

    • That is a fantastic book. It is so amazing in fact, that my idol Robert Kiyosaki loved it. I mentioned that before, but I am still amazed by that fact. Definitely check that one out.

  • Christina says:

    Thanks for this list! As a huge believer in personal development, I have read (and reread) several of these but not all. Thank you for introducing me to a couple of new ones including the Slight Edge and the Compound Effect. They are going on my Amazon list now 🙂

    • I think you will find both the “Slight Edge” and the “Compound Effect equally helpful. Both deal with habitual action taking while focusing a little more on some key points. Always awesome to see someone else equally as passionate about financial success as I am. Thanks for the comment!

  • Rachael says:

    I always love a good self development read, so really appreciated this run down of the best picks out there. I’ve seen a few similar lists around but this offered more info which was useful. I particularly love The Compound Effect. I read it a few years back, but it is ever relevant. So very practical and actionable. You don’t always remember where little thinking habits came from but I know that book affected me in a very positive way.

    You Are a Badass looks awesome too – think I’ll check that out next, and add the others to my ever-growing reading list.

    Thanks again for putting this together. Love it!

    • Couldn’t agree more, Rachael! I love You Are a Badass as well because it is so down to earth and straight to the point. I think a lot of women will find this book very applicable as well since Jen Sincero is such a great motivational writer for female entrepreneurs especially.

  • Mong Phan says:

    Wow, so many things to read. All of them are very interesting and worth to buy. But what is your recommendation to read first? What is your most favorite one?

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