Wednesday, March 13, 2013

The Best Books for Your Work and Life

I'm a bookworm, and though I hate to choose favorites, I'm breaking that rule today and sharing the best books that have profoundly helped me grow in my personal life and in my work. Let me know what you think of my picks, and get ready to share your own favorites in comments!

Best book to get you thinking about your business:

The E-Myth Revisited, Michael Gerber. This little book will show you why most small businesses don't work, and what to do about it.

Best book for writers: 

On Writing Well, William Zinsser. This classic will help anyone write better nonfiction. If you liked The Elements of Style, you'll love Zinsser.

Best book for creatives who need to get organized:

Organizing Solutions for People with Attention Deficit Disorder, Susan Pinsky. If you're a dreamy artist type who can be a little scattered or a lot messy, raise your hand. And then go get this book.

Best escapist fiction: 

Trick question. Pick whatever you want, just make sure you read some every once in a while. Personally, I loved Rules of Civility and The Likeness (big language warning for both). Just find something you like and dive in.

Best book for figuring out what to do with your life:

Please Understand Me II, David Keirsey. Before you know what you are called to do, sometimes you have to figure out who you are. This book is for Myers-Brigg geeks (like me) and anyone else who wants to understand themselves better so they can understand how to move forward.

Best book for figuring out how to write about your life: 

The Memoir Project, Marion Roach Smith. Everybody has a story to tell, but not everybody can tell an interesting story. Smith tackles how to write honestly and engagingly about your own life, whether the events are ordinary or monumental, whether you're writing a book or a blog post.

Best book for convincing yourself to get to work: 

The War of Art, Steven Pressfield. According to Pressfield, Resistance is what stands between the life we live and the unlived life within us. The War of Art makes you feel like you must overcome this resistance--which basically means putting your butt in the chair and getting to work. Pick this up whenever you need a good kick in the pants. What books have helped you grow--as a person and in your work? Share the titles in comments so we can all find some new favorites! 

Anne Bogel loves strong coffee, long books, and big ideas. She puts a timely spin on timeless women’s issues at her blog Modern Mrs Darcy.

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