Every one of us will benefit from advice, insight or motivation at some point in our lives. Whether you’re trying to make it to the top of the career ladder or striving for contentment within yourself, a good audiobook can help steer you in the right direction.
We’ve cherry-picked the top 10 self-improvement audiobooks to help you live your best life. Some will give you confidence, others will challenge your thinking, but all should help you get to where you want to be. Best of all, these audiobooks can be absorbed while you’re busy going about your daily life — all you have to do is hit play.
1) The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
Striving to be your best self, but tired of trendy pop psychology books with little scientific basis? Stephen R. Covey's book takes a refreshingly honest, scientifically grounded and transparent approach to personal transformation. Learn about the laws of human nature and how the fundamental principles of human conduct are essential to both professional and personal success.
You’ll also hear practical tips for solving a range of problems — both at home and in the office — and empowering practices that help you deal with a range of different situations. Covey himself narrates his book, in a voice reviewers have described as ‘clear and even calming.’
2) The subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck
You might recognise Mark Manson from his articles in Forbes, TIME and The Huffington Post. His second book, which became a New York Times bestseller, is grounded in years of academic research. It’s an insightful, thought-provoking and often hilarious guide that will help you decide what you should be caring about, and what isn’t worth your time.
Unlike many self-help books, Manson writes without waffle — this is a succinctly written book that doesn’t beat around the bush. Be prepared to look deeper at what motivates you, question your own priorities and have your eyes opened to a new way of thinking.
3) Think and Grow Rich
Get ready to be inspired — Napoleon Hill’s 1937 motivational classic is packed full of success stories from some of the greatest men and women in history. Hill spent 20 years interviewing no fewer than 504 self-made millionaires and prominent figures, from Henry Ford to John D. Rockefeller. He then condensed their wit and wisdom into this groundbreaking bestseller.
Discover the secrets to financial and personal success, including how to maintain a positive mental attitude, build resilience, turn information into action and rebound from failure. This is an essential audiobook for those who want to take control of their future and make something of themselves.
4) Take Control of Your Life: How to Silence Fear and Win the Mental Game
Feeling anxious? Overwhelmed? Out of your depth? Renowned motivational speaker Mel Robbins is here to help you tackle the biggest obstacle standing between you and personal growth: fear. This is a powerful audiobook that combines one-on-one life coaching with humorous personal life stories from the author herself.
Learn how to identify your life-limiting fears, understand your reactions to stress and recognise your triggers, and then hear actionable advice on how to take back control. Whatever your fear — be it change, rejection or being alone — this audiobook can help you turn your anxiety into action.
5) Big Magic
Big Magic is a big-hearted, inspirational and humorous audiobook from the bestselling author who gave us Eat, Pray, Love. Elizabeth Gilbert uses personal stories from her own life, as well as from those who inspire her, to unlock, inspire and nurture the creative artist in all of us.
Learn all about the creative process, discover how to speak your own truth and become braver, more curious and more authentic in your creative pursuit. You'll also hear plenty of motivational and practical advice on how to get down to business. This is an audiobook that will help every aspiring artist follow their dreams.
6) The Alchemist
Find out why The Alchemist is one of the bestselling books of all time. Brazilian novelist’s Paulo Coelho’s famous allegorical tale follows the journey of a Spanish shepherd boy named Santiago. Santiago is travelling across the Egyptian desert to the Pyramids, in search of buried treasure. He encounters a few interesting characters along the way, including a powerful Alchemist.
Eventually, his focus begins to turn from the worldly treasures he set off to find, to the much more valuable treasures within. Santiago’s story — beautifully narrated by Adriel Brandt — will inspire you to listen to your heart, and help you to find the courage to follow your own dreams.
7) Girl, Stop Apologizing
Girl, Stop Apologizing is author Rachel Hollis’ personal call to women of all ages and walks of life to reach for the stars. This is a toolkit for women who want to be the best they can be, whether as a businesswoman, wife, daughter or simply for themselves.
It’s packed with practical tips and advice on how to be brave, confident and capable in our daily lives, as well as a healthy dose of straight-talking tough love. Hollis speaks plainly and directly, sharing the mistakes and habits that have made her who she is today. Girl, Stop Apologizing is narrated by Hollis herself, making this audiobook all the more personal.
8) Thinking Fast and Slow
Get ready to challenge your entire way of thinking and overhaul your whole decision-making process. Nobel Prize-winning Economic Scientist Daniel Kahneman has produced a must-read for anyone interested in psychology and economics. In his global bestseller, Kahneman has been credited with ‘changing the way we think about thinking.’
This audiobook will explore the very rational behind your judgements and decisions, uncovering complex biases you’re probably not even aware you have. Armed with this insight, you’ll be far more equipped to understand yourself, your decisions and how you can better both.
9) How to Win Friends & Influence People
Dale Carnegie’s best-selling book was first published in 1936, but his sage advice is still very much applicable today. In fact, How to Win Friends & Influence People made it to number 19 in Time Magazine’s 2011 list of the 100 most influential books of all time.
Indeed, Carnegie’s simple yet effective advice for interacting successfully with others and forging more meaningful connections is arguably more important now than ever. Whatever business or social circle you’re in, this audiobook will teach you how to treat and relate to people from all walks of life. In doing so, it will equip you with the communication tools needed to succeed on both a business and personal level.
10) Eat That Frog
If you’re a chronic procrastinator who never gets to the end of your to-do list, then Brian Tracy’s audiobook is for you. Hear concise, practical and engaging advice on how to increase your productivity, manage your time effectively, ruthlessly prioritise, fulfill your potential and get the job done in both personal and professional settings.
This is an invaluable resource for all of us who lead busy, multitasking lives and need to squeeze all we can out of every minute. Witty and thoroughly convincing, it’ll give you all the motivation you need to get up and eat that frog every single day.
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