In his classic book The 5 Love Languages, psychologist and speaker Gary Chapman argues that dysfunction in marriages is largely rooted in the fact that we all speak different love languages, and people fail to learn and speak their partner’s. This leads to couples running on empty emotional tanks. Chapman explains the five love languages (words of affirmation, quality time, receiving gifts, acts of service, and physical touch), and then shows how the discovery of your spouse’s love language can lead to a more loving, lasting marriage.
Read on for key insights from The 5 Love Languages.
In The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck, Mark Manson takes on the prevailing cultural beliefs about the good life. He identifies the sources and assumptions of a toxic positivity that leads to paralyzing, unrealistic expectations and a generation of people who feel worthless, discontented, and depressed. His counterintuitive approach is to stop trying so hard, and figure out what is actually worth caring about and what is not. This book provides tools for reframing the way we see the world, our problems, our values, and ourselves.
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This classic by Dale Carnegie has been in print for over 80 years. The book is for anyone who wants to learn how to work effectively with people, to handle conflicts more gracefully, to criticize without offending, and to win others to alternative ways of thinking. Carnegie outlines numerous principles, each full of anecdotes and the writings of famous intellectuals and politicians, as well as his own personal experiences. The principles give the reader insights into what makes humans tick and makes them happy. Carnegie maintains that following these principles will pave the way for more meaningful friendships, wider influence, and greater success in life.
Read on for key insights from How to Win Friends and Influence People.
We are creatures of habit. Our brains are routine-creating machines that establish patterns so that we can automatically complete simple, repetitive tasks without giving them much thought. This mindless automation allows us to reserve our mental energies for more important tasks; it also helps us to effectively manage the myriad decisions we face each day. But not all habitual behavior is good. Sometimes we pick up habits we’re not proud of, like overeating, procrastinating, smoking, angry outbursts, and alcoholism. The Power of Habit shows us how habits form, how they become ingrained, and how they can be changed so that you can master your habits before they master you.
Continue reading for key insights from The Power of Habit.
14 Minute Read
For all the talk about the importance of a good night’s sleep, how many of us actually wake up in the morning feeling rested? In The Sleep Solution, Chris Winter debunks common myths about sleep by explaining what is actually happening in the body during sleep. Drawing from years of research and firsthand experience dealing with people’s sleeping problems, Winter provides insights and suggestions that can help people understand this vital life process and get the best sleep possible.
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The USA Memory Championship is an annual competition held in New York since the early 90s. There are several events, including name-face recall, memorizing long numerical sequences, and remembering the order of shuffled decks of cards. Joshua Foer attended the competition as a reporter one year and a competitor the next. This book details Foer’s unexpected immersion into the world of memory in the intervening year. Through extensive research, interviews on the topics, and training with “mental athletes”, he came to realize anyone can drastically improve their memory, and proved it by winning the USA Memory Championship after only a year of concerted effort.
Read on for key insights from Moonwalking with Einstein.
5 Minute Read
In a world that seems fast-paced, we have lost the art of serenity, of being still. We hunt the next high, we chase the next craze, accrue more things, but where does this get us? Paradoxically, for all our chasing, we miss out on so much! In The Things You Can See Only When You Slow Down, Sunim offers reflections on life, love, relationships, and spirituality, illuminating aspects of the human condition that we are prone to forget.
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Napoleon Hill was once a poor Appalachian boy. Orphaned at thirteen and poorly educated, he joined the newspaper business. After several years as a journalist, he had the good fortune of landing an interview with business tycoon Andrew Carnegie. Carnegie could see that young Hill had grasped the secrets of business success that Carnegie had been elucidating. Carnegie commissioned Hill to interview 500 successful individuals, learn their stories, and distill guiding principles of wealth acquisition that could be shared with the general public. Think and Grow Rich is a bestseller from 1937 that illuminates critical steps to success from Hill’s twenty-year project of researching success and interviewing tycoons and politicians like Teddy Roosevelt and Thomas Edison. What it all comes down to is the connection between outlook and making it rich. This book teaches you how to harness thought and turn it into wealth.
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7 Minute Read
According to Gary Taubes, the most pressing public health problem facing the world right now is obesity. It was not just concern about the obesity epidemic but also the pervasive misinformation surrounding it that motivated Taubes to write this book. He maintains that the common assumptions about how weight is gained and lost have left millions ill-equipped to manage their weight effectively. In Why We Get Fat, he shows us where the true problem lies, and what we can do about it.
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Ray Dalio built Bridgewater Associates out of his small New York City apartment in 1975. Bridgewater is now considered one of the most successful investing firms in the world, and Times and Forbes have deemed him one of the world’s wealthiest, most influential people alive. In this book, Dalio distills decades of knowledge and experience into guiding principles for getting all that we can out of life. According to Dalio, it all begins with fundamental truths that equip us to achieve our personal and professional goals.
Read on for key insights from Principles.
11 Minute Read
Contrary to popular belief, being a badass has nothing to do with wearing ripped jeans or riding a motorcycle. A true badass is characterized by having unwavering belief in yourself and what you are capable of. Your inner badass pays zero attention to the nonsensical fears you listen to about how you’re not good or strong enough to be and do what you really want. This book will help you to train your inner badass to work for you so you can end the self-sabotage and run free.
Continue reading for key insights from You are a Badass.
Since its publication in 1989, Covey’s The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People has sold more than 25 million copies worldwide. Covey’s approach differs from the myriad quick-fix solutions that promise outward change, but neglect to evaluate the character and habits of the person. This book defines a habit as the internalization of principles such as empathy, cooperation, and growth. As Covey shows us, to achieve your goals, you must build your character on a principle-centered foundation.
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There was a time when author and speaker Mel Robbins’ life was in the toilet: her marriage was falling apart, her finances were grim, and she felt like she was wasting away. It all changed for her in five seconds, when, depressed and unable to get out of bed, Robbins counted backward from five and forced herself to get up and start the day. It was a watershed moment for her, and she discovered a principle that would revolutionize her perspective on life. She regained power to make decisions and reclaimed control of her life one small decision at a time. She exhorts others to do the same in her ultra bestseller The 5 Second Rule.
Author Brené Brown humorously proclaims herself a professional “vulnerability avoider.” In the safety of her research, she spent 12 years studying everything there is to know about vulnerability and its relationship to shame. With the data collected, she was confronted with a choice: to dare greatly in the face of vulnerability, or to recoil in shame. This book provides practical insight into the nature of vulnerability and how it directly impacts the human experience.
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7 Minute Read
Many people are haunted by memories and paralyzed by worries. But between the past and future, there is the present, where, as Eckhart Tolle argues, we were meant to stay, where life is truly happening. Here in the Now we find the light-hearted, joy-filled existence that so many are striving for, but few seem to find. Accepting each moment as it comes and all it contains, instead of fighting it or withdrawing from it, is the key. In The Power of Now, Tolle shows us the benefits of moving into the Now and the obstacles that hinder many from living mindful, fulfilling lives.
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The Beatles sang, “All you need is love.” Unfortunately, five out of ten marriages end in divorce, which suggests that love alone is not enough. During decades of counseling troubled marriages, Dr. Eggerichs frequently observed a destructive pattern: When a woman doesn’t feel loved by her husband, she responds by withholding respect—and when a man doesn’t feel respected by his wife, he responds by withholding love. The result is a self-perpetuating cycle of marital craziness. Eggerichs believes that breaking this cycle is the key to solving most of the problems in the marriage relationship.
Read on for key insights from Love and Respect.
For anyone struggling to sustain the magic of love in their intimate relationships, understanding some key insights about gender differences may prove helpful. Men and women give and receive love differently and have different needs, so we need to change our approach instead of trying to change the person. Friction and resentment are born in relationships not because men and women are different, but because we have forgotten how truly different they are.
Read on for key insights from Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus.
The self-help shelves at bookstores and libraries are teeming with titles about how to successfully do x, y and z. This book is less about “how to” and more about “when to.” Daniel Pink’s When is the synthesis of over 700 studies from fields as diverse as biology, neuroscience, anthropology, economics and social psychology. His aim is to show that timing in life is not an art, but a science. Pink’s book is full of fascinating facts and practical suggestions for when it is best to take action.
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In the 1991 comedy City Slickers, there’s a memorable exchange between the film’s protagonists, in which the older, sage figure tells the younger character, “Do you know what the secret of life is? One thing. Just one thing. You stick to that, and everything else don’t mean sh*t…. That’s what you’ve got to figure out.” Gary Keller (co-founder of the world’s most successful real estate company, Keller Williams Realty) teams up with his editor, Jay Papasan, to convince the world that this is the soundest advice out there, that to find and pursue that One Thing is the key to a life that is simpler, less stressful and more meaningful.
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Sheryl Sandberg was devastated when her husband suddenly and unexpectedly died. Family friend and psychology professor, Adam Grant, was a resource and comfort in that season, walking her through the loss. This book brings together personal reflections on grief, interviews with people who have had to overcome harrowing challenges, and a distillation of the latest research on dealing with hardship and resilience-building. More than just information, Option B is full of practical tools and moving reflections that will benefit those suffering loss, as well as their loved ones wondering how best to support them.
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Rules? Do we really need more? Clinical psychologist Jordan Peterson says that if we hope to bring order from chaos in our lives then we definitely need the right ones. Many in our modern, scientifically advanced age are tempted to dismiss ancient stories and literature as rife with superstition and prejudice, but in 12 Rules for Life, Peterson’s approach is not dismissal but gleaning and synthesizing ancient wisdom that was hard-fought and dearly bought. Combining wisdom from the past with the latest scientific research from the present, Peterson gives some guidelines for transforming chaos into order.
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What best predicts success? Is it education? Life experience? Travis Bradberry and Jean Greaves argue that more than special knowledge or skills, emotional intelligence (EQ) is an accurate predictor of success in life and work. Emotional intelligence is what separates high achievers from low achievers. You may be smart, but if you aren’t self-aware, able to interpret your own emotions or read other individuals or groups, then your success will be hampered. The good news is that emotional intelligence is not fixed. It’s a skill that can be developed. Emotional Intelligence 2.0 clarifies what emotional intelligence is, and offers suggestions for improving your ability to deal effectively with self and others.
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In a society full of perfectionists, many hide in shame because they inevitably fall short of such an impossible standard. Psychologist and researcher Brené Brown exposes this all-too-common phenomenon of interpreting imperfections as signs of inadequacy. She then goes on to argue that these areas of vulnerability are not failures but amazing opportunities to show courage, exercise true compassion, and connect with others.
Read on for key insights from The Gifts of Imperfection.
This book began as a series of in-depth interviews that New York Times reporter John Leland conducted called “85 and Up.” The book’s title is just one of the numerous lessons that Leland gleaned through research and time spent with his newfound mentors.
Read on for key insights from Happiness is a Choice You Make.
by Earl Henslin
Some scientists have referred to the brain as the hardware of the soul. So what happens when the hardware is not functioning at an optimal level? If the hardware is compromised, then any software we try to add will have little to no effect. If we hope to experience joy in our lives, we must learn how the brain works. It turns out that the decisions we make can impact the brain, which means we have some measure of control over how much joy we experience in life. This Is Your Brain On Joy shows us how the brain functions, and gives suggestions for how our capacity for joy can be enhanced.
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Wouldn’t it be nice if there were a way to earn and accomplish far more while working only a fraction of the hours you work now? Turns out there is a little-known, rarely-exploited, economic principle that can help you do just that.
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In our more honest moments, most of us would have to acknowledge that we are overly attached to our technological devices. It turns out that what we gain in convenience, efficiency, and autonomy, we lose in freedom and deeply meaningful relationships. We would like to believe that we are the masters of our tools, but, increasingly, technologies are being designed to reverse this relationship, to make us hopelessly attached to our devices.
Read on for key insights from Irresistible.
The twenty-first century has brought new economic tumult and risks, but also new pathways toward gaining financial freedom. The problem is that most people are still sold on popular myths about wealth creation that prevent them from making the most of these opportunities for personal enrichment. The Business of the 21st Century sets the record straight, and explains surer, proven methods of building wealth than conventional employment. This book is for anyone who is climbing the ladder and tired of looking at the rear of the person just above him.
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Do you need to accept excess stress as the nature of the twenty-first century beast? Or is it possible that there might be a comprehensive organizational system that can handle the demands of the Information Age while also making you more productive, creative, and stress-free? Knowledge workers of the world unite! You have nothing to lose but your stress!
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11 Minute Read
It’s easy to love the lovable. But can you love those who are different and difficult? That’s a tall order, but Bob Goff thinks it’s vital if we want love to be a concrete reality and not just an abstraction. Everybody, Always is a story-driven manifesto that shows how people loving like Jesus in our everyday lives—with vulnerability and kindness toward all—can truly make a world of difference.
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What successful people have in common more than any other factor is mindset. There are certain patterns of thinking that the successful consistently possess, regardless of culture, era, or circumstances. Bestselling author and motivational speaker John C. Maxwell gives us a glimpse into the types of thinking that lead to success.
Read on for key insights from How Successful People Think.
Admiral William McRaven recently delivered a commencement address to his alma mater, University of Texas. His advice was so well received that he expanded his speech into a best-selling book. Drawn largely from “a lifetime of lessons crammed into six months” of Navy SEAL basic training, McRaven offers some refreshing common sense to a complicated world where such wisdom is sorely lacking.
Read on for key insights from Make Your Bed.
At age 23, clinical psychologist Amy Morin lost her mother to a brain aneurysm. On the three-year anniversary of her mother’s death, Morin lost her husband. Not long after remarrying, her father-in-law was diagnosed with a terminal cancer. Refusing to be shattered by yet another death, she sat down to write a list of mental pits that she would need to avoid as she anticipated yet another loss.
Read on for key insights from 13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do.
We live in what some have called the Age of Melancholia. There is a mushrooming depression epidemic that must be dealt with—but how? Psychologist Martin Seligman, famous for his research on learned helplessness, argues that a person’s explanation for moments of failure and misfortune has the power to either encourage pessimism and depression or preempt the downward spiral. Learned Optimism holds out hope that pessimism and depression are not personal traits that people are stuck with. A new set of cognitive skills can help people bounce back from misfortune and failure instead of habitually falling to pieces.
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In a world full of randomness and chance, making smarter decisions in the face of uncertainty is a skill worth mastering. In Thinking in Bets, professional poker player Annie Duke becomes our guru to help us make better bets in life.
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Marianne Williamson became legendary when Oprah began raving about her book, A Return to Love. Here are the insights about the inner life that overturned so many people’s perceptions of what it means to find love. It’s not as far from each of us as we tend to think.
Read on for key insights from A Return to Love.