Reading gives you a new perspective on the world that is not offered anywhere else. In the world of books, anything is possible. This is why it’s best to open yourself up to as many kinds of perspectives as possible, from the worlds of politics, society, and science. A book can teach you so much more than just how to live, it can also teach you the meaning of life.
Just look at the most successful people in this world and ask yourself, what books do they read? Here are some of the best life-changing books.
Table of Contents
- 1 Best Books For Changing Your Life Of All Time
- 1.1 The Blue Zones by Dan Buettner
- 1.2 Do the Work by Steven Pressfield
- 1.3 Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari
- 1.4 Life Of Pi by Yann Martel
- 1.5 Flow: The Psychology Of Optimal Experience by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
- 1.6 The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey
- 1.7 Talent is Overrated: Geoff Colvin
- 1.8 Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life: Anne Lamott
- 1.9 The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron
- 1.10 The Adventures of Tom Sawyer By Mark Twain
- 1.11 The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg
- 1.12 The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
- 1.13 Grit by Angela Duckworth
- 1.14 The War of Art by Steven Pressfield
- 1.15 The Buddha Said— Meeting the Challenges of Life’s Difficulties by Osho
- 1.16 The Art of Learning by Josh Waitzkin
- 1.17 Deep Work by Cal Newport
- 1.18 The Slight Edge: Turning Simple Disciples into Massive Success and Happiness by Jeff Olsen
- 1.19 On Writing Well by William Zinsser
- 1.20 Stumbling Upon Happiness By Daniel Gilbert [One of the most important science books that can change your life]
- 1.21 The Little Prince (originally published in French as Le Petit Prince) by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
- 1.22 Perennial Seller by Ryan Holiday
- 1.23 Post Office by Charles Bukowski
- 1.24 The Year of Magical Thinking: Joan Didion
- 1.25 Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert M. Pirsig
- 1.26 Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki
- 1.27 The Outsider by Albert Camus
- 1.28 Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
- 1.29 Essentialism by Greg Mckeown
- 1.30 The Boyhood Days by Rabindranath Tagore
- 1.31 Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank
- 2 Conclusion
Best Books For Changing Your Life Of All Time
These are my top books that will change your life. These books will help you to improve your outlook and lifestyle.
The Blue Zones by Dan Buettner
It is possible to live a long and meaningful life. How can you live and not die? This book examines five areas in the world that people forget about dying.
Do the Work by Steven Pressfield
Doing the work is the only way to happiness and meaningful life. Because it’s more than the result, no one can do your job for you. It’s about fighting resistance, it is about your inner demons, and it’s about showing up every day and doing the work. Only you can do this.
Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari[Highly recommended on the list of top books that change your life.]
Sapiens is Yuval’s story about the evolution of the planet, homo sapiens, and our behavior on Earth.
Sapiens will share all about our great grandmother, chimpanzees’ brain development, and how stories can unite sapiens. They also discuss marital rape laws and why hypocritical religious and cultural values exist.
Sapiens is the story behind everything. This article will tell you everything that has happened since Day Zero, 14 billion years ago.
A 40-year old person wakes up and declares, “Hey, I don’t know who you are.” Where are you? You can give him Sapiens to make sure he knows all that has happened and the likely future events. He may then ask for help to fall asleep after reading about the plans and doings of other people.
As you would look through the black and white photo albums of your grandparents, take a look at Sapiens. It is our history.
Life Of Pi by Yann Martel
Pi Patel, the son of a Zookeeper and philosopher, is an expert on animals and philosophy. Pi, his family, and friends are attempting to immigrate from India to North America. Their ship sinks and Pi is left alone in a lifeboat. Richard Parker, a Bengal tiger of 450 pounds, joins them. The stories that follow are full of adventure and intrigue.
Flow: The Psychology Of Optimal Experience by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
Csikszentmihalyi has discovered that flow is what makes life genuinely satisfying. It’s a feeling of deep concentration, immersion, and absorption. The classic work on happiness also touched upon contemporary psychology and delved into topics such as family, sport, and art to answer the question: “How can we make our lives meaningful?”
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey
This book is a favorite of mine. This book was first published in 1989. The late Covey explains seven habits that can help you be more effective at work, family, and in your personal life. Everybody who desires to succeed should read this book at a minimum once.
Talent is Overrated: Geoff Colvin
Colvin says that deliberate practice identifies aspects of performance that need improvement and then works intently to improve them. This life-changing book will show you exactly what about how to excel in your chosen field, even though it is difficult.
As you know, reading books is regarded as among the most intellectually valuable pursuits. And the self-help books will have the same benefits on the readers, especially in terms of mental assistance, read more about our Top 25 Best Self Improvement Books Of All Time [Update 2022].
Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life: Anne Lamott
This book was recommended to me five years ago. I finally bought it in the end. Bird by Bird is genuinely life-changing. It was a life-changing book to read Lamott’s shitty first drafts, which genuinely changed my life. This book is essential reading for any writer or aspirant to become one. Honorable mention to The War of Art by Steven Pressfield.
The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron
This life-changing book is essentially a self-help guidebook for creativity. It encourages readers to follow a spiritual and artistic path. This book is dynamic and offers a variety of tasks at the end. This book is superficial and deep, but it can change the creative switch in anyone.
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer By Mark Twain[On every list of the top rated books that will change your life.]
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, a classic children’s book, was my ninth grade reading. Regardless of whether I read it at a young age or not, the book and the hilarious adventures of Tom Sawyer (and his friend Huckleberry Finn), two clever orphans from Missouri, impacted me greatly.
The adventures are a cultural and social satire that shows how young boys grow up and become. We respond to goodness when we are treated with kindness. We try to break free to escape from being strangled. The book demonstrates how we are molded into the system and why it is important to question everything.
The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg
The Power of Habit is one of the most life-changing books. When I am asked what inspired me to write about morning routines and publish a book on the topic, I answer that it was my first reading of The Power of Habit seven years ago. This book will show you how to create healthy habits and break bad habits.
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
An easy to read, highly descriptive, The Alchemist is my only fiction work (while I love reading fiction, I prefer to read non-fiction). Learn how to overcome the obstacles and channel your courage on the path towards the goal you hold dearest.
It’s this inspiring tale of self-discovery about a quest for a better world as Santiago. His quest leads him in a new and more fulfilling direction. He learns to listen to his heart and to follow his dreams.
An Andalusian shepherd boy embarks on the journey of a lifetime. This book is a must read for anyone who dreams of adventure. Because life is an adventure. Life is full of possibilities.
Grit by Angela Duckworth
The highly successful are driven regardless of their domain. This is a two fold trait. They are hardworking and resilient, which is a rare trait. They are also extremely resilient and hardworking. Grit is one of the most life-changing books that will help you succeed whether you’re in high school or college.
The War of Art by Steven Pressfield
This is the most important book I have ever read. It has been instrumental in helping me create successful businesses, compose books, and make an authentic and fulfilling career. It helped me overcome my inner resistance to create my authentic life and be my authentic self. It is essential to be an entrepreneur or writer, artist, or another type of creator.
The Buddha Said— Meeting the Challenges of Life’s Difficulties by Osho
This book was purchased on a 2014 trip to the Himalayas. This book is Osho’s interpretation of the Sutra in forty two chapters. It is a scripture derived from Buddha’s quotations that a Chinese emperor compiled during the first century CE.
The book is divided into 22 chapters and is full of hilarious anecdotes. It discusses why people are always concerned, how humans can connect with the universe, be happy, manage our thoughts, meditation, mindfulness, and which topics to pursue, which to ignore, and how you can do it. You can read one chapter from this book on any difficult day and feel your peace.
The Art of Learning by Josh Waitzkin
“What I have realized is that what I am best at is not Tai Chi, and it is not chess — what I am best at is the art of learning. This book is the story of my method.”
Josh Waitzkin is a chess prodigy who is also an international Tai Chi champion. His autobiographical book shows that the process is far more critical than the outcome. He emphasizes that success is an inevitable side effect of learning and offers practical insights into learning any skill. (linked are his ideas and my articles).
Deep Work by Cal Newport
Rapid technological advances not only made our lives easier but, at the same time, transformed our psychology and got our attention to all kinds of stimuli. Deep work is the only way to regain your freedom. This book will show you how.
The Slight Edge: Turning Simple Disciples into Massive Success and Happiness by Jeff Olsen
The Slight Edge shows us how small actions over a long period can make a big difference in our lives. People don’t get great by doing simple things over and over. We just need to show up and do a little bit every day.
On Writing Well by William Zinsser
Communicating with others is essential, no matter your profession. Communication skills are more valuable than any other skill.
Stumbling Upon Happiness By Daniel Gilbert [One of the most important science books that can change your life]
“We don’t remember our past well so we don’t know if we were happy or not. Or how we really felt at a certain moment. We don’t know what would make us happy in the future. Our feelings and desires change with time. What we know is only the now that doesn’t have to be steered to make our future happy for we really don’t know what’s up with that future time. We can also incorrectly predict how we feel right now. Perceptions are portraits, not photographs, and their form reveals the artist’s hand every bit as much as it reflects the things portrayed.”
The book shows how happiness can be a subjective experience. It is the person who can best talk about her happiness and that person alone. We don’t have enough information to remember the past and can’t foresee our future. Only the present can be lived.
The Little Prince (originally published in French as Le Petit Prince) by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
The Little Prince is a great wonder.
The Little Prince was originally written as a children’s book, but it later became one of the most influential, philosophical, and life-changing books. It is based on the author’s own experiences with crashing his plane in the Sahara desert and getting lost for several days.
The story begins with the narrator meeting the little prince who claimed he was from a star and had arrived in the desert.
According to the prince, adults are often confused about life and seek out consequences. The prince said that people are always trying to make a fortune by accumulating stars and acting like kings when there isn’t one to rule.
Let The Little Prince be the one book you choose to read from this entire list.
Perennial Seller by Ryan Holiday
Perennial Seller is a practical and helpful book that is more like Holiday’s Believe Me, I’m lying or Growth hacker Marketing than his books on stoicism. Holiday’s gift for writing is evident in this book. I read it twice while on vacation and one year later as I prepared for my first book launch.
Post Office by Charles Bukowski
“In the morning it was morning and I was still alive.
Maybe I’ll write a novel, I thought.
And then I did.”
Bukowski’s first novel, Post Office, was published in 1939.
This book shows raw and honest facts. It’s written in simple English. Bukowski did not sugarcoat anything, and such honesty is rare in fiction.
They brought the flower, a red orange plant with a stem. It made more sense than most things except that it was murdered. I took out a bowl and placed the flower inside. Then, I brought out a glass of wine and set it on the coffee table.
How many times a day do you pretend to be honest? This book will challenge you to think.
The Year of Magical Thinking: Joan Didion
This book is very touching and follows Didion’s year following her husband’s passing. This book was not something I expected to enjoy as much as it did. Didion’s beautiful writing is an art course, and her ability to find the light at the end made it a delightful read.
If you are interested in the specific self-help books for men and women, take a little bit of time to look at Best Self Help Books For Women Of All Time: 2022 Pick or Top 30+ Best Self Help Books For Men of All Time 2022 which are beforehand required reading in 2022.
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert M. Pirsig
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance doesn’t have a lot to say. It’s a classic blend of travel, psychology, and philosophy.
The story tells the tale of the author’s bicycle ride through the US with his son. It also contains ideas about life and its importance.
We shouldn’t run from machines and systems, that technology is part and parcel of art, why we should not run from them, Quality and its importance, the imitating propaganda of our education system, how humans escape from the truth and other philosophical and everyday ideas form is the core of this book.
Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki
I didn’t understand how wealth works. The book changed my entire outlook on money and wealth creation.
The Outsider by Albert Camus
Meursault, Meursault’s protagonist, is a classic existentialist narrative. He never showed any remorse or adjusted according to social norms. He didn’t do it to make other people like him or accept his character. He did what was necessary, ignoring the reactions of society and sometimes even while putting himself in danger.
We need to be happy with who we are and accept that all people share the same life.
“I often thought that if I’d been forced to live inside the hollow trunk of a dead tree, with nothing to do except look up at the sky flowering above my head, I would have eventually got used to that as well. I would have looked forward to the birds flying by or the clouds drifting into one another, just as I looked forward to seeing the odd ties my lawyer wore, just as in another time and place, I’d waited eagerly for Saturdays so I could press Marie’s body close to mine.
Although, when I really thought about it, I wasn’t living in a dead tree. There were people who were worse off than me. It was an idea of Mama’s that people could eventually get used to anything, and she often talked about it.”
Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
When I was a small girl, I began reading. Then I stopped and repurchased books a few years later. I spent the majority of my pocket money on books that were about Mother Teresa and wildlife. My small Indian town, where I lived until I was 15, didn’t hear much about Tolstoy, Keats, or Nietzsche.
My limited knowledge led me to believe that Tolstoy was difficult to read. His words were so simple that I was astonished at their simplicity.
Anna Karenina, set in Moscow, Petersburg, and the Russian Countryside in the 19th century, is a story about privileged Russian life today.
Essentialism by Greg Mckeown
If you are an essentialist and willing to pay the price for choosing, you can make a lot of progress and live the life of your dreams.
The Boyhood Days by Rabindranath Tagore
As Tagore, also I felt accessible on the terrace of our tiny townhouse. Although we couldn’t go outside often, our view from the second floor was great.
Rabindranath Tagore published The Boyhood Days, a memoir about his childhood in Kolkata and growing up as a boy just before his death.
Tagore wrote about his trip through Kolkata. He described how lonely he felt, with only his buddies (his brothers’ wives), how absurd it was to find closed caravans for women driven by men, his inability towards formal education, the melancholy that he felt for the world, and what he believed could change.
When I feel lost, whether as a writer or someone out of place within our culture, I grab Tagore’s Boyhood Days to help me make sense.
Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank[On every list of the top books that will change your life.]
“We all live with the objective of being happy; our lives are all different and yet the same.”
“In the long run, the sharpest weapon of all is a kind and gentle spirit.”
“Human greatness does not lie in wealth or power, but in character and goodness. People are just people, and all people have faults and shortcomings, but all of us are born with basic goodness.”
“Those who have courage and faith shall never perish in misery.”
Maybe I shouldn’t include another book on the holocaust so soon. The Diary of Anne Frank is a book about hope and life. It’s a diary of a 13-year old girl who lived in hiding in German-occupied Amsterdam. She was later sent to Auschwitz, where she died.
In July 2015, while on vacation in Amsterdam, I visited Anne Frank’s museum. This is where she wrote her diary during hiding. The museum was closed when I arrived.
I viewed the building from the outside and thought about Anne before going onto one of the busiest streets to get the famous Dutch potato wedges. As the years go by, I can appreciate her words at such a young age more and better.
The heartbreaking journal of a girl, who seems far too grown up for her age, is filled with positive thoughts about love, freedom, and goodness. We can still live in the present and appreciate the beauty around us, even if we don’t have friends to go out with or be able to meet them.
Self-help books that entertain, inform, or enthrall are all possible. The above best books on life-changing speak to the brain, mind, and emotions that give you the easiest way to connect with one person. Some books speak directly to your soul, books that challenge your core beliefs and stay with you long after the book is finished.
We hope that this list of the best life-changing books will inspire you to read more. Penn Book only recommends the very best books on life-changing and we leave the rest to you. If you’ve read life-changing books that are not on this list, please share them with us in the comments section below. Thanks for reading.
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Last update on 2022-04-12 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API