Do You Read Self Help Or Self Improvement Books?

Self Help and Self Improvement Books

Okay, it’s confession time. I’ve mocked self help and self improvement books for years. In fact, I remember the times I’d gone to the bookstore with an old boyfriend many years ago and whenever he picked up a self-help book, I’d say “Really? You believe the bullshit the author spews? How can you even learn from a self-help book? They’re woo woo nonsense!“.

Ahh young and cynical Tine at 18. 😛

See, the thing is, back then, the only sort of books that come close to self-help I’d even contemplate reading are the Chicken Soup for the Soul books. Even then, I wasn’t a big fan of those books. I’d check the Chicken Soup books at the library out and if only you’d seen the number of times I rolled my eyes as I read them, you could smack the back of my head and my eyes wouldn’t roll back out. Mind you, in hindsight, those books were good. I was just too contemptuous to think otherwise.

I didn’t read any self-help or self-improvement books till I moved to Australia. When I bought my first Kindle, I downloaded as many free e-books as I could find. Some of them included self-help books.

And you know what? They really weren’t bad at all. In fact, I began to enjoy reading them. I downloaded more self-improvement books and even bought a few. I particularly relish the ones on mindfulness, productivity and entrepreneurship and find that they help me in my personal growth.

I’m still very selective of the self-help books I’d read but I don’t mock them anymore because a lot of them do work. It’s my regret to make fun of them before. Even though I’m still cynical on certain topics, I don’t think they’re rubbish because while they don’t appeal to me, I can see how they’ve transformed other people’s lives.

Oh if only 18 year old me could see me now. She’d tell me “you’ve changed, you self-help reading git“. And I most definitely have, oh young and foolish Tine. 🙂

What about you? Do you read self-help books? Do they work for you? If you do, what are some of your favourite titles? I’d love to check them out!

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8 comments… add one
  1. I’ll admit that I’m a fan of self-help books, I love both of Miranda Kerr’s books and I’m a fan of the secret. I’ve also read Lisa Messengers books which I think could be deemed ‘self help’ for entrepreneurs and loved them to bits. These days there are quite a few good self help podcasts and blogs around too – if books aren’t your thing. X
    Belinda | The Female Entrepreneur Collective recently posted..Branding | Build a Beautiful Brand in 15 DaysMy Profile

    1. Tine

      Haha I’ve seen you IG Lisa Messenger books! I haven’t given them a go yet even though I love the Collective mag. Which book do you recommend I must read first?

  2. Catherine

    There’s a glorious window between purchasing a self help book then actually peeling open the cover that seems like “ok I’ve bought the book. The hard work is done. Let the transformation begin!” Very therapeutic.

    1. Tine

      OMG yes! That’s exactly how I feel too! 😀 😀 😀

  3. Jue

    I do buy self help book especially when I am new to supervisory stuff

    Most helpful book ever for me on supervising people was, You can’t fire everyone

    Haha I know.

    But it was good. Realistic and it was exactly what I went through.

    Now I just get that book for everyone who is new to supervising role

    1. Tine

      Sounds like a good idea, Jue! As long as it helps you, why not and others who are new to the supervising role, why not? 🙂

  4. Joan

    I am big fan of self-improvement books. I am careful what I buy though. They should come from known publishers and should have stood the test of time. I believe that time weeds out the poorer ones.
    Joan recently posted..What is in my travel makeup bag?My Profile

    1. Tine

      There are so many on Amazon. Like you, I have to be careful with what I buy too because there’s just so much of it. Thank goodness for the free sample download Amazon allows. If I don’t like the first chapter, I won’t buy the book. It’s a good lesson for authors too: you better wow your audience from the very first chapter! 😛

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