Recent Releases: Best Books for Personal Development

Ahhh Spring!  Trees are budding, flowers blooming – the signs of new beginnings are all around us.  Well, it seems that the book world is in on the action, too! Check out this list of recent releases – some practical, some inspirational, some hilarious – and all focused on personal growth and development.

 
 

Imagine if you lived without the fear of not being good enough. If you didn't care how your life looked on Instagram, or worry about what total strangers thought of you. Imagine if you could let go of the guilt, and stop beating yourself up for tiny mistakes. What if, in every decision you faced, you took the bolder path?

Too many of us feel crushed under the weight of our own expectations. We run ourselves ragged trying to please everyone, all the time. We lose sleep ruminating about whether we may have offended someone, pass up opportunities that take us out of our comfort zones, and avoid rejection at all costs.

There's a reason we act this way, says the author, Reshma Saujani, Founder and CEO of Girls Who Code. As girls, we were taught to play it safe. Well-meaning parents and teachers praised us for being quiet and polite, urged us to be careful so we didn't get hurt, and steered us to activities at which we could shine.

As a result, we grew up to be women who are afraid to fail. It's time to stop letting our fears drown out our dreams and narrow our world, along with our chance at happiness.

By choosing bravery over perfection, we can find the power to claim our voice, to leave behind what makes us unhappy, and go for the things we genuinely, passionately want. Perfection may set us on a path that feels safe, but bravery leads us to the one we're authentically meant to follow.

Brave, Not Perfect shares powerful insights and practices to help us let go of our need for perfection and make bravery a lifelong habit. By being brave, not perfect, we can all become the authors of our biggest, boldest, and most joyful life.

 

 
 

Who is the most powerful woman in the room? She’s the one who can raise a million dollars in a minute. She’s the one who can command the attention of a crowd of any size from one person to a crowd of five thousand. She’s the one who can sell anything to anyone, just by asking. She can be you.

As a senior executive at Christie’s, leader in her field, and one of Gotham magazine’s Most Influential Women in New York, Lydia Fenet knows firsthand that the one skill that can set women apart in both their personal life and career is the ability to sell. The Most Powerful Woman In The Room Is You equips you with everything you need to knowfrom how to sell authentically and how to network (or die), to the importance of never apologizing (start negotiating instead), how to perfect your poker face, and always, always, tell the truth. Lydia shows us how to sharpen our personal kit of practical tools of the trade, such as finding your own “strike method,” or signature move, to help you feel confident from the minute you start any pitch. Most of all, she offers plenty of encouragement to take ownership in your position and look for opportunities to innovate.

Throughout, Lydia also shares personal and inspiring stories from her own life—like how she got her foot in the door at Christie’s after she was originally told there were no spots left in the intern program. And when she realized she was being paid a third of her worth—and how she came back more powerful than ever.

Filled with additional case studies, thoughtful insights, and meaningful advice from some of the most powerful and successful women in business, fashion, journalism, sports, and the arts, The Most Powerful Woman in the Room Is You is an empowering must-have guide that will have you winning over the audiences in all aspects of your life.

 
 

From the New York Times bestselling author of Who Thought This Was a Good Idea? comes a fun, frank book of reflections, essays, and interviews on topics important to young women, ranging from politics and career to motherhood, sisterhood, and making and sustaining relationships of all kinds in the age of social media.

 

Alyssa Mastromonaco is back with a bold, no-nonsense, and no-holds-barred twenty-first-century girl's guide to life, tackling the highs and lows of bodies, politics, relationships, moms, education, life on the internet, and pop culture. Whether discussing Barbra Streisand or The Bachelor, working in the West Wing or working on finding a wing woman, Alyssa leaves no stone unturned...and no awkward situation unexamined.

 

Like her bestseller Who Thought This Was a Good Idea?, SO HERE'S THE THING... brings a sharp eye and outsize sense of humor to the myriad issues facing women the world over, both in and out of the workplace. Along with Alyssa's personal experiences and hard-won life lessons, interviews with women like Monica Lewinsky, Susan Rice, and Chelsea Handler round out this modern woman's guide to, well, just about everything you can think of.

 

 
 

Stop worrying about being nicer, calmer, or more patient. Be a d*ck.

For author Alexandra Reinwarth, it all began when she told off a toxic friend. Realizing this person was making her life miserable, she ditched her. This one small act of rebellion sparked a huge change in the way Alexandra forever dealt with social guilt about everything.


THE GOOD GIRL'S GUIDE TO BEING A D*CK will teach you how to embrace your inner jerk, guiding you through who and what to get rid of from your life, stop worrying about what others think, and how the seemingly small things in life can have a huge impact on the quality of your everyday living. You'll learn how to embrace your own needs and desires to live the life you've always wanted.


 
 

For most of us, outer order contributes to inner calm. And for most of us, a rigid, one-size-fits-all solution doesn't work. 

The fact is, when we tailor our approach to suit our own particular challenges and habits, we're then able to create the order that will make our lives happier, healthier, more productive, and more creative. 

Gretchen Rubin has found that getting control of our stuff makes us feel more in control of our lives. By getting rid of things we don't use, don't need, or don't love, we free our minds (and our shelves) for what we truly value. 

With a sense of fun, and a clear idea of what's realistic for most people, Gretchen Rubin suggests dozens of manageable steps for creating a more serene, orderly environment—one that helps us to create the lives we want.

 
 

More than ever, politics seems driven by conflict and anger. People sitting together in pews every Sunday have started to feel like strangers, loved ones at the dinner table like enemies. Toxic political dialogue, hate-filled rants on social media, and agenda-driven news stories have become the new norm. It’s exhausting, and it’s too much.

 In I Think You’re Wrong (But I’m Listening), two working moms from opposite ends of the political spectrum contend that there is a better way. Sarah from the left and Beth from the right invite those looking for something better than the status quo to pull up a chair and listen to the principles, insights, and practical tools they have learned hosting their fast-growing podcast Pantsuit Politics. As impossible as it might seem, people from opposing political perspectives truly can have calm, grace-­filled conversations with one another—by putting relationship before policy and understanding before argument.

 
 

The author of It’s Okay to Laugh and host of the popular podcast Terrible, Thanks for Asking returns with more hilarious meditations on her messy, wonderful, bittersweet, and unconventional life.

Life has a million different ways to kick you right in the chops. We lose love, lose jobs, lose our sense of self. For Nora McInerny, it was losing her husband, her father, and her unborn second child in one catastrophic year.

But in the wake of loss, we get to assemble something new from whatever is left behind. Some circles call finding happiness after loss “Chapter 2”—the continuation of something else. Today, Nora is remarried and mothers four children aged 16 months to 16 years. While her new circumstances bring her extraordinary joy, they are also tinged with sadness over the loved ones she’s lost.

Life has made Nora a reluctant expert in hard conversations. On her wildly popular podcast, she talks about painful experiences we inevitably face, and exposes the absurdity of the question “how are you?” that people often ask when we’re coping with the aftermath of emotional catastrophe. She knows intimately that when your life falls apart, there’s a mad rush to be okay—to find a silver lining, to get to the happy ending. In this, her second memoir, Nora offers a tragicomic exploration of the tension between finding happiness and holding space for the unhappy experiences that have shaped us.

No Happy Endings is a book for people living life after life has fallen apart. It’s a book for people who know that they’re moving forward, not moving on. It’s a book for people who know life isn’t always happy, but it isn’t the end: there will be unimaginable joy and incomprehensible tragedy. As Nora reminds us, there will be no happy endings—but there will be new beginnings.

 
 

In a haze of vape smoke on a rare windy night in L.A. in the fall of 2016, Chelsea Handler daydreams about what life will be like with a woman in the White House. And then Donald Trump happens. In a torpor of despair, she decides that she’s had enough of the privileged bubble she’s lived in—a bubble within a bubble—and that it’s time to make some changes, both in her personal life and in the world at large.

At home, she embarks on a year of self-sufficiency—learning how to work the remote, how to pick up dog shit, where to find the toaster. She meets her match in an earnest, brainy psychiatrist and enters into therapy, prepared to do the heavy lifting required to look within and make sense of a childhood marked by love and loss and to figure out why people are afraid of her. She becomes politically active—finding her voice as an advocate for change, having difficult conversations, and energizing her base.

Thrillingly honest, insightful, and deeply, darkly funny, Chelsea Handler’s memoir keeps readers laughing, even as it inspires us to look within and ask ourselves what really matters in our own lives.

 
 

Based on her inspiring, viral 2018 commencement speech to Barnard College’s graduates in New York City, New York Times bestselling author, two-time Olympic gold medalist and FIFA World Cup champion Abby Wambach delivers her empowering rally cry for women to unleash their individual power, unite with their pack, and emerge victorious together.


Want to among the first to know all the latest recommendations from the Badass Women’s Book Club? Sign up below!

Name *
Name
Gina Warner