7 Self-Help Books for Dreamers
I never used to be a reader. I’d get bored or distracted easily and quickly and retreat to watching TV or scrolling Instagram (tbh, sometimes I still do). Until I found subject matter that actually interested me, reading seemed like a chore.
Being a “dreamer” my whole life, I have always been curious about habit forming, goal chasing and self care — what tools do I need to perform at my best and battle my resistance to create? When I started reading books about these topics, I became obsessed, and I’m not stopping any time soon!
If you're interested in chasing your dreams, cultivating positivity, surrendering to "what is," and learning how to care less about the little things, check out our list of self-help books below.
7 Self-Help Books for Dreamers
1. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck
At first glance, this title may imply that you shouldn't care about anything. Thankfully, that's not what this book is about at all. It uncovers all the energy we waste on things that don't matter, helping readers figure out where and how we should strategically allocate our f*cks.
There was a point in my life where I cared so much about what people thought of me, how successful I was, and how I could maintain an unattainable standard of perfection in all areas of my life. I failed miserably, obviously. In doing that, though, I had little to no f*cks left to give to more important things in life, like my relationships with family and friends and my mental health.
This book helped me uncover which areas in my life I needed to spend more time caring about, and which ones I needed to stop ruminating over. Don't get me wrong, occasionally a f*ck will spiral out of control and I will lose it over the guy who cut me off in rush hour traffic - but, most of the time, I feel like I have all my f*cks in a row. And this book helped me do that.
2. The Power of Now
Much of what causes anxiety and fear is the inability to live in the present moment. I have always struggled with this because I am a chronic worrier, always thinking about the future and what might happen. On the other hand, a lot of people hang onto the past. And while dealing with your past and planning for your future are both important, the real power of living a life of freedom lies in being fully present and surrendering to the moment.
A lot of this book focuses on how we resist "what is" and end up creating much more drama and anxiety for ourselves. This book is definitely not as relaxed and candid as The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck — it takes more of a spiritual enlightenment approach, but it's definitely worth a read.
3. The War of Art
As someone who has always dreamt of starting my own business or creating something that makes a positive impact on society, The War of Art really speaks to me.
The entire first part of the book is written around this notion of resistance — all the factors that get in the way of creating — whether it's fear, criticism, procrastination, or self-doubt. The second part gives you the tools you need to overcome those roadblocks and combat resistance. Simply, how to show up for yourself and your dreams. The last part, titled "Beyond Resistance," addresses the angels and allies that help us along the way and how to win the battle between the "Self" and the "Ego."
This is one of those books I try to pick up and reread every year — it's that good.
4. How to Stop Worrying & Start Living
Chronic worriers, raise your hand! I am with you.
This book is one that I will use as a reference for the rest of my life. Dale Carnegie gives you practical rules for breaking your worry habits and cultivating peace and happiness. A few examples: Keep busy, cooperate with the inevitable, set a "stop-loss" order on your worries, don't try to saw sawdust, think and act cheerfully, and find yourself and be yourself.
There is honestly so much good information in this book, and it really makes you realize that regardless of who you are or where you are in life right now, we all deal with a lot of the same emotions and fears. You are not alone in your worries, but you don't have to fall victim to them, either.
5. You are a Badass
In You are a Badass, author Jen Sincero makes you feel like you can conquer the world. The book tackles topics about self-perception, self-love, gratitude, meditation, forgiveness, fear, and money, and how they all play a role in bringing out your inner badass — whatever that may look like. It really empowers you to get off your bullshit and start living your ideal life.
It's self-help with an authentic, hilarious spin. TBH, self-help books with a lot of swear words actually speak to me way more than the earthy, enlightening ones, but both have helped me in different life scenarios.
This book takes a unique approach to self-improvement. Interestingly enough, the entire book is rooted in research about the benefits of gaming, and how playing games can help humans become the heroes of their own lives.
SuperBetter is essentially a game that helps people break bad habits, achieve goals, and work through hardships like illness, poverty, and grief. Whether you need help identifying and battling the demons that stunt your growth, understanding your right next step, or overcoming fear, the book provides you with actionable, and frankly fun, steps to achieve your goal.
7. Girl Stop Apologizing
I love Rachel Hollis. I. Love. Rachel. Hollis.
She is such a badass champion for women and I always feel like freakin' Beyonce after I read her books.
Girl Stop Apologizing is the reason I started writing and creating again. Her first book, Girl Wash Your Face, is also must-read, but I am still on a high after finishing Girl Stop Apologizing and I truly feel like I can accomplish anything.
As women, sometimes we don’t fulfill our full potential because we’re afraid — of failure, other people’s opinions, our own perceptions of our self worth — and the list goes on. Rachel preaches over and over again that we need to stop apologizing for our dreams and realize that we are made for more. She provides actionable tools that help us go after what we want in life, sans the shame and guilt.
P.S. I just ordered her Start Today journal and listen to her podcast on my commute to work. You could say I’m nothing short of a superfan.
Any self-help books you think we should read? Drop your suggestions in the comments below!