If you’re looking for self-improvement books, you are certainly not alone. The self-help book market today is approaching a total of $1 billion and is continually growing. In fact, surveys have shown that one in five people has read a self-help book in the last year. But how do you decide which self-help book is best for you? With hundreds of thousands of titles, it can be a challenge. And picking the one most recently published is not always the best strategy.
When it comes to selecting the best option, your individual situation certainly matters. There are many areas where self-improvement books can help enhance your life–and, as is the case with Ed Kopko’s upcoming book–Project Bold Life: The Proven Formula for Taking on Challenges and Achieving Happiness and Success–teach you how to set achievable goals. But as an overview, the following provides a list of the best-selling self-help books of all time. Based on the number of copies sold, these books have withstood the test of time—and sales!
Over 80 million copies sold
At the top of the best-selling self-help books list sits this classic by Napoleon Hill. Hill interviewed highly successful business moguls of his time and identified key laws and habits that drive success. Among these were desire, faith, persistence, and the suppression of doubt and negativity. It remains a classic.
Over 65 million copies sold
As an allegorical novel, Paulo Coelho captures readers’ attention in this story about a young shepherd’s pursuit of treasure. Through this young man’s travels, the book teaches the importance of following one’s heart and dreams while paying attention to the journey. Though indirect in its message and even as fictional work of art, it represents one of the best-selling self-help books of all time.
Over 50 million copies sold
Released in 1984, Louise L. Hay’s book has quickly climbed up the list of top best self-improvement books ever published. The premise states that the mind and body are connected and that many illnesses represent mental and emotional issues. Hay explains how adopting healthy thought- and behavior patterns facilitate physical and holistic healing for all.
Over 26 million copies sold
With a focus on financial success, this self-improvement book by Robert T. Kiyosaki highlights the importance of financial literacy. In attaining financial wealth and understanding investments as a strategy to wealth, one readily gains success. It is one of the best self-improvement books out there, especially for those seeking career and life security.
Over 25 million copies sold
Among one of the most popular self-improvement books, Stephen R. Covey’s book highlights essential practices for those seeking to be better—and live life effectively. In order to change one’s situation, one must change his or her perspectives. The book describes specific habits that facilitate such shifts and enable greater personal effectiveness.
Over 25 million copies sold
We all know too well that stress undermines many of life’s pleasures. In Richard Carlson’s book, he provides 100 tips on how to put things in the proper perspective. Through perspective, we can rid ourselves of unnecessary stress and lead a fuller life. This book’s straightforward approach has helped millions and placed it among the best-selling self-help books.
Over 23 million copies sold
Perhaps the only fable among the best-selling self-help books on the list, this one by Spencer Johnson attained notoriety quickly. The tale describes four common reactions of people dealing with change in their work and their lives. And as a fable, it invites the reader to relate to these reactions and learn from them.
Over 23 million copies sold
Unique among the best-selling self-help books, The Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield describes the author’s spiritual and psychological journey. Via the deciphering of a Peruvian manuscript, keen insights reflective of ancient Eastern traditions are revealed. The book is ideal for exploring New Age spirituality and ways to succeed during difficult life transitions.
9. The Secret
Over 20 million copies sold
Published in 2006, The Secretby Rhonda Byrne quickly reached the top 10 best-selling self-help books of all time based on a simple premise. This premise says that what we think has the power to attract both good and evil into our lives. Thus, “the secret” explains how this law of attraction can serve to attain the best life has to offer.
Over 20 million copies sold
If quality of life and personal satisfaction is your goal, this book offers a strategy to achieve just that. Through affirmations and visualizations, Norman Vincent Peale demonstrates in his book how positive thinking can be cultivated. It has remained one of the most popular self-improvement books since its release in 1952.
Over 15 million copies sold
This book by John Gray remains one of the best self-improvement books for those seeking better relationships. By approaching relationship differences from a gender socialization perspective, couples can improve their relations. Since 1992, this self-help book has offered key insights that have been used by millions of people—ordinary people and therapists alike.
Over 15 million copies sold
Published in 1936, this book has been among the best-selling self-help books for a long time now. Dale Carnegie provides insightful approaches and strategies based on honesty and sincerity to help people deal with differing views. The key is in being able to see other perspectives while expressing one’s own views with respect.
Over 11 million copies sold
While the very first original motivational book has sold millions, the series of these books represent an exponential reach of self-help messages. Primarily a book to help others find happiness through inspiration and hope, it consists of 101 brief stories. Through this book, Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen introduce a unique way of inspiring people to find their own happiness in life.
Over 7 million copies sold
Don Miguel Ruiz advocates personal freedom in The Four Agreements. The four agreements—which includes sincerity and the pursuit of excellence—can help one identify and release various constraints to achieve that personal freedom. Since 1997, it has been among the best-selling self-help books available.
Over 5 million sold
With the premise that life is filled with problems, M. Scott Peck highlights the importance of discipline in this self-help book classic. Balance, truthfulness, delayed gratification and responsibility are the four cornerstones of this discipline. The strategies offered in the book have helped millions.
Best-Selling Self-help Books for a Bolder Life
While many other influential self-help books are available, those listed here remain among the best. Each has stood the test of time. By reading them, you can learn common truths and insights—even though each book offers unique perspectives on strategies for self-improvement.
Regardless of which one of these best-selling self-help books you choose to read, you can be reassured that their message will be a powerful one. And in the process, you will be inspired to be that much bolder in the next steps you take in life.
There are a handful of books released in 2020 that offer such pearls of wisdom. Each is unique in its own way, and all 3 can motivate you to make positive changes in your life. Not only do these self-help books offer practice advice that is easy to understand. But they are also motivational books that are engaging and easy to read. For these reasons, and their great inspirational content, we are adding them our “must-read” self-help book list of all time.
- Project Bold Life: The Proven Formula to Take on Challenges and Achieve Happiness and Success by Ed Kopko
If you’re looking for one of the best self-help books in 2020, Kopko’s recent release is an absolute must-read. The insights that Kopko offers in the pursuit of one’s boldest life reflect his own passions and life’s pursuits. Not only has Kopko excelled as an executive business entrepreneur, but he has extensive history in publishing and writing. He has been featured in Forbes magazine for leadership insights. He has also been recognized for extraordinary work in diversity and inclusion by Diversity MBA magazine. These experiences and achievements serve as a foundation for the more-than-practical advice he offers in his latest book.
The promise of Kopko’s book is to provide anyone with the tools needed to achieve bold happiness and success. No matter what one’s situation may be, highly inspiring stories empower actions for bold achievements. In addition to a step-by-step guide toward defining stretch goals, Kopko offers a Bold Life Formula. This formula utilizes the Seven Pillars of a Bold Life to help us overcome challenges and obstacles we envision. Not only does the book contain personalized stories, but they well depict difficulties many of us face. As one of the year’s best motivation books, Kopko provides the perfect recipe for finding bold purpose in life.
- The Power of Colors: The Path to Self-Healing and Personal Transformation Through Native American Ancient Wisdom by Noah Goldhirst
Noah Goldhirst is a well-known therapist and senior lecturer who has gained an incredible following. She has long embraced alternative medicine as a means to explore bolder ways of living. In fact, this has been part of her life’s pursuit for more than 3 decades. Thus, it’s not surprising that her latest pursuit involves the examination of ancient Native American wisdom. In this regard, she offers an easy-to-read explanation of the Wheel of Colors still practiced by Native Americans today. As 2020’s best motivational books, it provides interesting perspectives not likely to have been previously appreciated.
The Wheel of Colors describes how each color has different meanings as well as psychological and physical effects. Colors are also unique to each person, and some will be best for you while others will not. By gaining an understanding of thee meanings and effects, you can utilize color to overcome life’s toughest challenges. Through practical advice, Goldhirst explains how this can be used to promote self-healing and personal transformation. For those seeking peace, love and joy, this is one of the best self-help books to consider. It can definitely help you on your journey to becoming a better you.
- Didn’t See That Coming: Putting Life Back Together When Your World Falls Apart by Rachel Hollis
If you’re familiar with Rachel Hollis, then you’re well acquainted with her other 2 motivational books recently released. Girl, Stop Apologizing and Girl, Wash Your Face have been quite popular self-help books on recent best-seller lists. As a business podcaster and motivational speaker, her insights in these books are clearly inspiring and empowering. Therefore, it’s understandable that this recently released books is also receiving critical acclaim. Through her own personal life stories, Hollis offers insights how we can best deal with pain and grief in life. The practical advice provided allows anyone in emotional pain to better deal with its consequences.
Though this book is about grief and pain, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t offer direction toward a bolder life. In fact, it does just the opposite. By way of example, Hollis shows how intense emotions are a natural part of many life experiences. Rather than holding them inside, acknowledging them and using them for motivation for action is important. Pain and joy can coexist and often do. Simply knowing this can help us persevere during tough times and overcome painful emotional obstacles. Hollis thus adds to her list of motivation books that is quite useful as well as inspiring.
- Regarded as one of the most important self-help books of all time, Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill has sold over 80 million copies.
- The Celestine Prophecy, written by James Redfield in 1993, was originally published by Warner Books.
With over 700,000 ratings and averaging at 4.21 stars, "How to Win Friends and Influence People" is the best self-help book according to Goodreads members.What self development books should I read? ›
- The 7 Habits of Highly Successful People by Stephen R. ...
- How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie.
- The Power of Now: A Guide To Spiritual Enlightenment by Eckhart Tolle.
- Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill.
|SOURCE: NIELSEN BOOK SCAN|
|1||Da Vinci Code,The||Crime, Thriller & Adventure|
|2||Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows||Children's Fiction|
|3||Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone||Children's Fiction|
John Q. Benham of Avoca, Indiana, USA has a private collection of over 1.5 million books. As they have filled up his house, most of them must be kept in his six-car garage, two-storey building and piled under tarpaulin outdoors.What is one of the most famous self-help groups? ›
The first self-help group, Alcoholics Anonymous, was developed in 1935 to meet a need for better treatment, as many felt that medical professionals at the time were not adequately treating alcoholism. Today AA and other 12-step programs are among the most popular type of self-help organization.Do therapists recommend self-help books? ›
37, No. 4, pages 370-377), about 85 percent of psychologists recommend self-help books to their clients. But with all the books out there-and more being published as you read this-how can a practitioner know which ones to recommend?What type of book sells best on Amazon? ›
- Religion and Spirituality.
- Biographies and Memoirs.
- Business and Money.
- Self Help.
- Cookbooks, food, and vine.
“The rich are voracious readers on how to improve themselves. They're reading self-improvement books, biographies, books about successful people, things like that, says Tom Corley, the author of “Change Your Habits, Change Your Life: Strategies That Transformed 177 Average People Into Self-Made Millionaires.”Which book should I read first? ›
If you ask any avid reader about some good books to read for beginners, they will definitely mention the Great Gatsby. Among the classic 20th century literature, The Great Gatsby follows the story of wealthy Jay Gatsby and his love for Daisy Buchannan.
Amanda Hocking is undoubtedly a star of self-publishing. Her success story started in an all too familiar manner as numerous agents and publisher rejected the manuscript she slaved over for more than a year. It was her first book, and ,unwilling to call it quits, Hocking turned to self-publishing.How long should it take to read a self-help book? ›
I read fiction for pleasure but self-help for me is all about the ideas. Most non-fiction is full of fluff to reach a respectable number of pages. We know being concise makes a message much clearer but paradoxically we won't pay $10 for a 5-page book. It takes roughly 7 hours to read a 250-page book.Who is the best selling American author of all time? ›
|Author||Min. estimated sales||Number of books|
|William Shakespeare||2 billion||42|
|Agatha Christie||2 billion||85|
|Barbara Cartland||500 million||723|
|Danielle Steel||500 million||179|
- #1 – Don Quixote (500 million copies sold) ...
- #2 – A Tale of Two Cities (200 million copies sold) ...
- #3 – The Lord of the Rings (150 million copies sold) ...
- #4 – The Little Prince (142 million copies sold) ...
- #5 – Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (107 million copies sold)
The familiar observation that the Bible is the best-selling book of all time obscures a more startling fact: the Bible is the best-selling book of the year, every year.What is the most sold book in the world called? ›
Tolkien, that lack comprehensive sales figures. According to Guinness World Records as of 1995, the Bible is the best-selling book of all time with an estimated 5 billion copies sold and distributed.Has any book sold a billion copies? ›
According to Wikipedia, there are nine books that have sold more than 100 million copies. Actually, the Bible, the Qu'ran, and Chairman Mao's Little Red Book are all over a billion copies, but I can't think of any way that including those three books is going to work out well for me, so we're sticking with these.What is the widest selling book in the world? ›
The Bible is the best-selling book of all time, having sold around 5 billion copies to date. The book had several authors and can be roughly divided into two parts: The Old Testament and the New Testament.Which state has the highest number of self-help group? ›
Detailed Solution. The correct answer is Bihar. Bihar has become the first state in the country to have 10 lakh self-help groups (SHGs) managed by women.How many members a typical self-help group should have? ›
A SHG is a community-based group with 10-25 members. Members are usually women from similar social and economic backgrounds, all voluntarily coming together to save small sums of money, on a regular basis.
The ideal size of an SHG is 10 to 20 members. (Advantage: In a bigger group, members cannot actively participate. Also, legally it is required that an informal group should not be more than 20 people.). The group need not be registered.What is a downside of self-help therapy? ›
There are also sometimes significant disadvantages to self-help approaches as well. You may lack the perspective to properly understand the nature of your issues. Your ability to help yourself will only be as good as your ability to be objective and clear about what the nature of your issues is.Should I read self-help books before bed? ›
Reading motivational and self-help books is also a great choice for bedtime as our brain requires positive thoughts to relax.Do self-help books for anxiety work? ›
Yes! Reading can help with anxiety by easing stress and helping your body and mind relax. Some doctors even incorporate bibliotherapy (treatment through the use of books) for patients with mental health conditions.How much do authors make per book on Amazon? ›
Amazon pays out a 35% royalty rate for books priced at $0.01-2.98 or any book over $9.99. However, if you list your Kindle book within the preferred $2.99 – $9.99 range, you'll earn 70% royalties on all book sales.What books sell well on Ebay? ›
- Don't Bother With Mass-Produced Fiction.
- Bibles Are Great Sellers.
- Demand Is High for Textbooks.
- Back Issues of Magazines Can Be Popular.
- Weird, Unusual, Rare, or Niche Books Attract Bidders.
What is the 5-hour rule? The 5-hour rule is the concept of spending at least one hour every workday consciously learning new things or practicing various activities. Doing so can help you gain new skills and knowledge, which can lead to both personal and professional development.What do rich people read everyday? ›
They focus on biographies, self/career improvement books packed with principles, lessons, mistakes, observations, successes and experiences, industry-related books, building wealth books and history books that changed economies.Why are self-help books a waste of time? ›
Self-help writers never just get to the point, they dance around it for hours and then leave you with something you already knew, you now just know it in 8 different wordings. If it were simply the lessons, I would be more keen on self-help books. But instead you're constantly confronted by forceful self-promotion.What are the 3 most read books? ›
- Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling.
- The Lord of the Rings series by J.R.R. Tolkien.
- The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho.
- The Da Vince Code by Dan Brown.
Absolutely yes. Reading more than one book lets you read depending on your mood. You also enjoy different reading mediums – print, e-books, and audiobooks. People will often wonder if you won't get things mixed up, like characters or plot details, or if you would not take longer reading multiple books.How many books is best to read at once? ›
How Many Books Should You Read at a Time? Even though no official studies have been made in this area, the general consensus between readers on Reddit seems to be that anything between 3 and a whopping 15 books is an acceptable number of books to be involved in at once.What 30 year old makes $1.8 million self-publishing on Amazon? ›
A 30-year-old went from writing as a hobby to making $1.8 million in a year self-publishing on Amazon. Here's how he did it in less than 5 years and his best advice to other writers. Dakota Krout was a newly married full-time student making $11,000 a year from two jobs.How do self-published authors get noticed? ›
Promote yourself on social media
Popular influencers know the importance of posting regularly, plus how and where to showcase their personal brand. I say where because you don't have to be present everywhere. The most important part is to figure out on which platform your audience is and start being present there.
How much can authors expect to earn from their books? A first-time author with a traditional publishing deal might expect an advance of $1,000-$10,000 and 5-18% royalties once they “earn out” their advance. Self-published authors do not receive advances, but their royalties can reach up to 70% for ebook editions.What are the 3 types of self-discipline? ›
Three types of Self-Discipline
Here are examples of three types: active discipline, reactive discipline, and proactive discipline.
The five pillars of self-discipline are: Acceptance, Willpower, Hard Work, Industry, and Persistence.What are the 7 ways to build self-discipline? ›
- STEP ONE: Know your strengths and weaknesses.
- STEP TWO: Remove temptations.
- STEP THREE: Set clear goals and have an execution plan.
- STEP FOUR: Practice daily diligence.
- STEP FIVE: Create new habits and rituals.
- STEP SIX: Change your perception about willpower.
- STEP SEVEN: Give yourself a backup plan.
With the Personal development industry slowly but steadily growing, the self-improvement market is expected to rise to $14.0 billion by 2025. Estimates of self-help books sold each year put the number at around 10 million.Is it hard to publish a self-help book? ›
But most of the time it's not that easy. Self-help authors need to read up on literary agents, editors, and types of publishers. Only then can the real work of getting published begin. We recommend you start with our Free Publishing Tool Kit if you're new to the book biz.
Weigh your page and word count against the pricing of various best sellers in your genre. On average, paperbacks run between $9.99 and $19.99 US depending on the genre and whether it's nonfiction or fiction. Of course, a hefty textbook is going to cost a whole lot more than a slim self-help book or devotional.What is the most sold book in the US? ›
|SOURCE: NIELSEN BOOK SCAN|
|1||Da Vinci Code,The||Brown, Dan|
|2||Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows||Rowling, J.K.|
|3||Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone||Rowling, J.K.|
- Leo Tolstoy – 327.
- William Shakespeare – 293.
- James Joyce – 194.
- Vladimir Nabokov – 190.
- Fyodor Dostoevsky – 177.
- William Faulkner – 173.
- Charles Dickens – 168.
- Anton Chekhov – 165.
According to Guinness World Records, Agatha Christie has the title of “world's best-selling fiction writer,” with estimated sales of over 2 billion. UNESCO also lists Christie as the most translated author in history.How many copies does the average self-help book sell? ›
The average self-published book sells 250 copies. The average self-published author makes $1,000 per year from their books. 33% of self-published authors make less than $500 per year. 90% of self-published books sell less than 100 copies.What book holds the record as the best-selling copyrighted book of all time? ›
The best-selling book of all time is the Christian Bible.Who is the author of the best-selling self-help book The Secret? ›
Regarded as a life-changing read by many readers, The Secret by Rhonda Byrne is a self-help book that embarks to motivate the reader about a universal paradigm about success that can be achieved though it remains hidden for most people.How many copies of the Alchemist book have been sold? ›
The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho
What the hell? Either the Wikipedia page for this book was written by a drunk person, or this book is insane. Either way, it sold more than 150 million copies and is one of only two books on this list published since I was born.
Published by Ol James on 29/05/2022
Of course, there's still a chance to earn money, although it may not be enough to quit your day job. Even still, many aspiring writers want to know how many books they need to publish to start earning an income. You need to publish one book to make money.
However, books for kids ages 4 to 8 enjoyed the highest sales volume overall, with 88 million units sold in 2021 versus 64 million units of middle-grade books.
In the book's lifetime
By comparison, the average traditionally published book sells 3,000 copies, but as I mentioned above, only about 250-300 of those sales happen in the first year. For a traditional publisher to think of a nonfiction book as a success, it has to sell more like 10,000 copies over its lifetime.
The Bible. Easily the most read book in the world is the Bible for obvious reasons. It is estimated to have sold over 40 million copies in the last 60 years.What are the 3 rules of The Secret? ›
Here's the essence of The Secret book in 3 lessons: The law of attraction is one of the most prevalent principles in the world. To use the law of attraction, you must think about what you want, not what you want to avoid. The three steps of the law of attraction are asking, believing, and receiving.Who is a best-selling mystery author? ›
1. Agatha Christie. A discussion of the best mystery writers usually starts with Agatha Christie. She is the best-selling author of all time, with 66 mystery books under her name.Why was The Alchemist banned? ›
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
Despite the success of the book, Iranian officials placed a ban on the novel in 2011. The only explanations were given by Iranian literary critics; the writing was considered too strong and frequently alluded to drugs and magic.
Harry Potter by J. K. Rowling is the best-selling book series in history. The first novel in the series, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, has sold in excess of 120 million copies, making it one of the best-selling books of all time.What books have sold 500 million copies? ›
The entire "Harry Potter" series has sold about 500 million copies to date, with this first book selling the most copies of any installment in the series.