A list of the top books recommended for entrepreneurs… by entrepreneurs.

Ever heard the phrase, “Leaders are readers?”* 

Well, it’s true.

It’s no secret that many of the world’s top entrepreneurs have a regular reading practice.

There’s no activity more rewarding than digging into a great book that helps you grow. 

We get asked a lot, “What are some books I can read to help me grow my business?”

Instead of giving out recommendations one at a time, we decided to put together a comprehensive list. 

In this post, we’re sharing the all-time best personal development books for entrepreneurs.

Of course, every list of books is subjective.

Many of the books on this list are polarizing--some people love them, and some hate them.

We wanted to bring some objectivity to our process. So we spent time researching recommendations from other entrepreneurs.

We started by looking in places where entrepreneurs hang out on the internet. Then we scoured them for posts of people asking for book recommendations. 

Each time a book was recommended, we took note of it. If a book got recommended over and over again, it made the list. Simple.

Of course, it’s not a truly scientific process. And many great books didn’t make the cut. But it’s at least a start.

So, here we are: A list of the best personal development books for entrepreneurs.

NOTE: The books are separated by category, and arranged in no particular order.

*In this day of podcasts and audiobooks, we should update the phrase to say, “Leaders are learners.” Admittedly, it doesn’t have the same ring to it. 

Classic Books Everyone Should Know About

As a Man Thinketh - James Allen

Allen reveals how our thoughts shape our character, and manifest themselves in our finances, health, appearance, and environment.

How to Win Friends and Influence People - Dale Carnegie

An all-time favorite of many entrepreneurs. It includes tips and techniques about improving conversational skills, gaining new clients, making friends quickly, and changing the way people think.

Think and Grow Rich - Napoleon Hill

Probably the most famous personal development book of all time. Apply the simple, basic techniques revealed here and you will have mastered the secret of true and lasting success.

Man’s Search for Meaning - Victor Frankl

Internationally renowned psychiatrist, and survivor of Nazi death camps. Frankl developed a revolutionary approach to psychotherapy. 

At the core of his theory is the belief that man's primary motivational force is his search for meaning. Remarkable blend of science and humanism.

Awaken the Giant Within - Tony Robbins

Legendary personal development trainer Tony Robbins unleashes the sleeping giant that lies within all of us, teaching us to harness our untapped abilities, talents and skills.

This book gives you the tools you need to immediately become the master of your own fate.

The Power of Awareness - Neville Goddard

Classic book about each human’s “state of consciousness.” It shows why a change of consciousness is necessary before you can change your outer world.

The Ultimate Jim Rohn Library - Jim Rohn

Rohn’s list of students reads like a Who's Who of top achievers. 

This audio book is a compilation of his most thought-provoking, income-generating, and fulfillment-producing ideas… Includes his most impactful success-defining ideas and strategies.

The Science of Getting Rich - Wallace Wattles

More than one hundred years ago, Wattles wrote one of the most influential books ever written on the subject of success and prosperity.

This original work of genius is a practical manual which teaches in simple language how to work precisely with the immutable laws of the universe to create wealth and abundance.

The 7 Habits of Highly Successful People - Stephen Covey

A top seller for decades, this book teaches proven principles of fairness, integrity, honesty, and human dignity. It explains the 7 habits that highly successful people cultivate in their lives.

The Richest Man in Babylon - George S. Clason

Beloved by millions, this timeless classic offers an understanding of - and a solution to - your personal financial problems that will guide you through a lifetime. 

Gives you secrets for keeping your money - and making more.

Rich Dad Poor Dad - Robert Kiyosaki

Kiyosaki has challenged and changed the way tens of millions of people around the world think about money. 

The book teaches timeless principles for creating wealth over your lifetime, and debunks many of the myths around personal finance.

The Meditations of Marcus Aurelius

Marcus Aurelius was one of the few true philosopher-kings in history. 

In this book, he explains how to think clearly, act purposefully, overcome any obstacle, and find peace and happiness along the way.

Random note: This is President Bill Clinton’s favorite book.

Books About Mindset

Psycho-Cybernetics - Maxwell Maltz

Maltz was the first researcher and author to explain how the self-image has complete control over an individual's ability to achieve (or failure to achieve) any goal. 

The book includes techniques for improving and managing self-image - visualization, mental rehearsal, relaxation - that have informed and inspired countless motivational gurus, sports psychologists, and self-help practitioners for more than 50 years.

Mindset - Carol Dweck

Stanford psychologist Dweck explains how being successful in almost every area of human endeavor can be dramatically influenced by how we think about our talents and abilities. 

This book created and popularized the terms “fixed mindset” and “growth mindset”.

The Power of Your Subconscious Mind - Dr Joseph Murphy

This book introduces and explains techniques that remove the subconscious obstacles that prevent us from achieving the success we want - and deserve. 

It demonstrates with real-life examples the way to unleash extraordinary mental powers to build self-confidence, create harmonious relationships, gain professional success, amass wealth, etc.

The Power of Positive Thinking - Norman Vincent Peale

Dr. Peale helps people master the problems of everyday living. You will learn techniques for eliminating all the negative thoughts that prevent you from achieving happiness and success. 

It’s an inspiring program that will help you create a positive change in your life.

The Code of the Extraordinary Mind - Vishen Lakhiani

This book teaches you to think like some of the greatest nonconformist minds of our era… to question, challenge, hack, and create new rules for your life so you can define success on your own terms.

The Code of the Extraordinary Mind is a blueprint of laws to break us free from the shackles of ordinary life.

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The Four Agreements - don Miguel Ruiz

Don Miguel Ruiz reveals the source of self-limiting beliefs that rob us of joy and create needless suffering.

Based on ancient Toltec wisdom, The Four Agreements offer a powerful code of conduct that can rapidly transform our lives to a new experience of freedom, true happiness, and love.

The Magic of Thinking Big - David Schwartz

In this best-selling book, Schwartz proves you don't need innate talent to become successful, but you do need to understand the habit of thinking and behaving in ways that will get you there.

Filled with easy-to-understand advice, this book will put you on the road to changing the way you think…  helping you work better, manage smarter, earn more money, achieve your goals, and, most importantly, live a fuller, happier life.

Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself - Joe Dispenza

Renowned author, speaker, researcher, and chiropractor Dr. Joe Dispenza combines the fields of quantum physics, neuroscience, brain chemistry, biology, and genetics to show you what is truly possible.

See also Becoming Supernatural and You Are the Placebo by Dr. Dispenza.

Outwitting the Devil - Napoleon Hill

The lesser-known of Hill’s books, he digs deep to identify the greatest obstacles we face in reaching our personal goals - including fear, procrastination, anger, and jealousy - as tools orchestrated by the Devil himself.

These hidden methods of control can lead us to ruin, and Hill reveals the seven principles of good that will allow us to finally triumph over them and succeed.

The Big Leap - Gay Hendricks

Author Gay Hendricks explains the Upper Limit Problem, a negative emotional reaction that occurs when anything positive enters our lives.

In The Big Leap, Hendricks reveals a simple yet comprehensive program for overcoming this barrier to happiness and fulfillment, presented in a way that engages both the mind and heart.

The 5 Second Rule - Mel Robbins

How to enrich your life and destroy doubt in five seconds. 

Using the science of habits, riveting stories, and surprising facts from some of the most famous moments in history, art, and business, Mel Robbins will explain the power of a "push moment". Then, she'll give you one simple tool you can use to become your greatest self.

Books That Will Pump You Up

Motivation Manifesto - Brendon Burchard

World-renowned high performance trainer Brendon Burchard reveals that the main motive of humankind is the pursuit of greater Personal Freedom.

We desire the grand liberties of choice - time freedom, emotional freedom, social freedom, financial freedom, spiritual freedom. Burchard motivates us to free ourselves from fear and take back our lives once and for all.

How I Raised Myself From Success to Failure in Selling - Frank Bettger

For anybody who has to sell (so, everybody). Bettger reveals his personal experiences and explains the foolproof principles that he developed and perfected.

He shares instructive anecdotes and step-by-step guidelines on how to develop the style, spirit, and presence of a winning salesperson.

You Are a Badass - Jen Sincero

In this refreshingly blunt how-to guide, Sincero serves up 27 bite-sized chapters full of hilariously inspiring stories, life-changing insights, easy exercises, and the occasional swear word.

By the end of You Are a Badass, you will understand why you are how you are, how to love what you can't change, how to change what you don't love, and how to start living the kind of life you used to be jealous of.

Relentless - Tim Grover

Tim Grover breaks down what it takes to be unstoppable. He details the essential traits shared by the most intense competitors and achievers in sports, business, and all walks of life.

10X Rule - Grant Cardone

Not our favorite, but many people swear by this book.

In it, Cardone teaches that if you want to achieve extreme success, you can’t operate like everybody else and settle for mediocrity. His book is all about taking massive action in your life to create success.

Books About Habits & Making Change

The Power of Habit - Charles Duhigg

One of our favorite books. In The Power of Habit, award-winning business reporter Charles Duhigg takes us to the thrilling edge of scientific discoveries that explain why habits exist and how they can be changed. 

Duhigg presents a whole new understanding of human nature and its potential.

Atomic Habits - James Clear

Tiny Changes, Remarkable Results. No matter your goals, Atomic Habits offers a proven framework for improving - every day. 

James Clear, one of the world's leading experts on habit formation, reveals practical strategies that will teach you exactly how to form good habits, break bad ones, and master the tiny behaviors that lead to remarkable results.

The Slight Edge - Jeff Olson

The Slight Edge is a way of thinking, a way of processing information that enables you to make the daily choices that will lead you to the success and happiness you desire.

It shows you how to create powerful results from the simple daily activities of your life, by using tools that are already within you.

High-Performance Habits - Brendon Burchard

After extensive original research and a decade as the world's highest-paid performance coach, Brendon Burchard finally reveals the most effective habits for reaching long-term success. 

Adopt these six habits and you win. Neglect them and life is a never-ending struggle.

Millionaire Success Habits - Dean Graciozi

Millionaire Success Habits is a book designed with one purpose in mind: to take you from where you are in life to where you want to be in life by incorporating easy-to-implement "Success Habits" into your daily routine.

Legendary business coach Dean Graziosi has broken down the walls of complexity around success and created simple success recipes that you can quickly put to use in your life to reach the level of wealth and abundance you desire.

Switch - Chip and Dan Heath

Why is it so hard to make lasting changes in our companies, in our communities, and in our own lives?

Psychologists have discovered that our minds are ruled by two different systems - the rational mind and the emotional mind - that compete for control.

In Switch, the Heaths show how everyday people have united both minds and, as a result, achieved dramatic results.

The Miracle Morning - Hal Elrod

What if you could wake up tomorrow and any—or EVERY—area of your life was beginning to transform?

The Miracle Morning is already transforming the lives of tens of thousands of people around the world by showing them how to wake up each day with more ENERGY, MOTIVATION, and FOCUS to take your life to the next level.

The 7 Decisions - Andy Andrews

Seeking out what separates the ordinary life from the extraordinary, Andrews has spent much of his life dissecting countless biographies and spending time with some of the most successful people on the planet in an effort to understand the principles that propel them toward greatness. 

The result: seven simple principles that - when applied consistently - render extraordinary lives.

The One Thing - Gary Keller

The One Thing will bring your life and your work into focus. They teach you tricks to cut through the clutter, achieve better results in less time, dial down stress, and master what matters to you. 

Principles - Ray Dalio

Ray Dalio, one of the world’s most successful investors and entrepreneurs, shares the unconventional principles that he’s developed, refined, and used over the past forty years to create unique results in both life and business—and which any person or organization can adopt to help achieve their goals.

Books About Overcoming Obstacles, Procrastination & Other Challenges

The Obstacle is the Way - Ryan Holiday

The book draws its inspiration from stoicism. Stoics focus on the things they can control, let go of everything else, and turn every new obstacle into an opportunity to get better, stronger, tougher.

Ryan Holiday shows us how some of the most successful people in history have applied stoicism to overcome difficult or even impossible situations.

See also Stillness is the Key and Ego is the Enemy by Holiday.

Extreme Ownership - Jocko Willink and Leif Babin

Two US Navy SEAL officers who led the most highly decorated special operations unit of the Iraq War show how to apply powerful leadership principles from the battlefield to business and life.

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*$K - Mark Manson

A superstar blogger cuts through the crap to show us how to stop trying to be positive all the time so that we can truly become better, happier people. 

Manson makes the argument, backed by both academic research and well-timed poop jokes, that improving our lives hinges not on our ability to turn lemons into lemonade but on learning to stomach lemons better.

The War of Art - Steven Pressfield

The War of Art has inspired people around the world to defeat "resistance"; to recognize and knock down dream-blocking barriers and to silence the naysayers within us. 

It helps you identify the enemy that every one of us must face, outlines a battle plan to conquer this internal foe, then pinpoints just how to achieve the greatest success.

Can’t Hurt Me - David Goggin

Goggins is the only man in history to complete elite training as a Navy Seal, Army Ranger, and Air Force Tactical Controller. In Can't Hurt Me, he shares his astonishing life story and reveals that most of us tap into only 40% of our capabilities.

Goggins calls this The 40% Rule, and his story illuminates a path that anyone can follow to push past pain, demolish fear, and reach their full potential.

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