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Reading is a great way to open your mind to new possibilities - helping you see your life and future goals in a different light. If you’re looking for some motivation to get something done or find your own purpose, these six books are sure to give you a steer in the right direction.
The Alchemist - Paulo Coelho
Key motivational quote: “When you want something, all the universe conspires to help you achieve it.”
This book is arguably the epitome of a ‘motivational read’. The whole story revolves around destiny and the idea that you can achieve anything when you believe in it. This might sound a bit corny but the book is written in a style which feels realistic and inspiring. The fact that the book has been translated into 80 different languages goes some way to argue that this book holds universal truths about life.
The Richest Man in Babylon - George S. Clason
Key motivational quote: “Men of action are favoured by the Goddess of Luck.”
The idea of reading an account of another man’s personal finances doesn’t sound exciting, but Clason’s The Richest Man in Babylon defies this expectation completely. The book is broken into 9 major sections, each of which teaches you a lesson in how to save, invest and manage money. Despite the fact that it was written in the mid-1920s, the parable-like stories in this book are so timeless that will help you to be better with your money today.
The Little Prince - Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Key motivational quote: “And now here is my secret, a very simple secret: It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”
This might technically be a children’s book but it has layers of meaning that take a lot of thought for adults to comprehend. The story revolves around a man who is stranded in the desert and meets a little prince. The prince tells him his story of travelling from his asteroid to Earth and the moments along the way reveal truths about life in their telling. This book is a great one to reflect on what is most important in life.
Managing Oneself - Peter Drucker
Key motivational quote: “There is nothing so useless as doing efficiently that which should not be done at all.”
This book inspired the foundations for people management that have been used for more than two decades. The concise way that Drucker explains his management theory means that the whole book can be read in little over an hour. The main questions in the book, “What are my strengths?”, “How do I perform?”, “What is my contribution?” makes this a great guide for steering yourself (and others) in the workplace.
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer - Mark Twain
Key motivational quote: “Well, everybody does it that way, Huck."
"Tom, I am not everybody.”
If you’re looking for some motivation to break the mould, you can’t go wrong with this literary classic by Mark Twain. The main characters in the book are concerned with bending the rules and doing things their own way. This book is an exercise in creative thinking and encourages the reader to consider the possibility that sometimes disregarding everything you know is the only way to move forward.
Start with Why - Simon Sinek
Key motivational quote: “People don’t buy what you do; they buy why you do it. And what you do simply proves what you believe.”
Sinek started the research for his best-selling book by sitting down with friends 1-on-1 for several hours and trying to identify the ‘why’ behind their lives. His theory is that if you can discover the reason why you should do something, it will bring you success and happiness. This is a great read for finding your purpose in life and also exists as a TED talk for those that want to hear the idea explained aloud.
Reading the words and thoughts of others is a great way of reassessing your own life. The next time you’re looking for some inspiring words to motivate you, pick a book from our list and we’re sure you’ll be full-steam ahead in no time.