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20 BEST BOOKS TO BUILD SELF-CONFIDENCE AND IMPROVE SELF-ESTEEM (2021)

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Best Books on Building Self-Confidence

Self-confidence; it’s something everyone points to when they say why they aren’t succeeding.  Hence our need to create this particular post on self confidence books.

Because let’s admit it.  At one time or another we’ve all blamed ourselves and our lack of confidence for why something didn’t go as planned in our life.

It could have been that date that didn’t go so well, the botched job interview, or even that business deal that fell through.  Whatever the case may be, many times, a lack of confidence is the culprit.

We say to ourselves, “I just don’t have enough confidence.”

But that’s not true.  It’s not true, because confidence is not something you have, rather, it is something you create.

Confidence is a State of Mind

state of mind confidence quote

Confidence is a state of mind, a feeling, and a way of being that can be created at will.

When you come to understand this, you’ll be able to turn on your confidence at a moment’s notice.  And when you know how to do this, you’ll start finding more of the success you seek.

Now I can tell you this truth over and over again until I am blue in the face, but, it will never be real to you until you’ve deeply ingrained this fact into your own mind.

And the best way to ingrain this fact into your own mind, is to become a student of confidence.

No, you don’t have to sign up for college courses to become a student of confidence.

To become a student of confidence all you have to do is… read.  You must read and study books on the subject of confidence.

Simple right?  So where should you start?

Start Here

Start with this list.  I’ve pulled together a list of the best books on building self-confidence that I’ve ever come across.  No doubt, there are hundreds of books on confidence, but let’s be honest, who (aside from P.h.D students) has the time to read hundreds of books on a single topic?

Exactly, hardly anyone!

So, if you want to master confidence and improve your self-esteem,  just read the following books recommended on confidence and you should be good to go.  You don’t have to read hundreds of books on confidence to learn the fundamentals.  Trust me, this handful of books will do the trick.

Every book provides something different, yet, every single one also confirms what I just said…

Which is, that how confident you are is up to you, because confidence is all in your head.

So, behold the 20 Books you must read if you ever wish to master self-confidence:

20 Best Books on Building Self-Confidence

self confidence books

[Full Disclosure: Each product we feature has been independently selected and reviewed by our editorial team. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.]

1. Feel The Fear and Do it Anyway

‘Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway’ is a classic book by the late Dr. Susan Jeffers.  In this book, Susan Jeffers offers up solid advice for overcoming the paralysis and inaction that stems from being fearful and lacking confidence.  Susan Jeffers pulls her knowledge from many years of research, and lecturing on the topic of transforming fear, indecision, and even anger into power, action, and extreme confidence.

The book contains a handful of practical insights and exercises that you can immediately implement to help you come to the realization that confidence is something to be nurtured and cultivated, much like a muscle.

This book is both an eye-opener and a solid book to begin with on your journey towards building your confidence.

Feel the Fear Confidence Book

2. How to Stop Worrying and Start Living

Fear, doubt, and worry can be debilitating.  Possessing just one of these problems can indeed stop the best of us from reaching the heights of success we seek.  How so?  Because fear and doubt kills self-confidence.  And if success demands anything, it demands self-confidence.

This book is comprised of many recipes Mr. Carnegie pulled together from night classes he would teach to adult students on how to overcome worry.

‘How to Start Worrying and Start Living’ is a cure for anyone who wishes to eliminate the debilitating effects of fear and worry from their lives, so they fortify their confidence and get on with succeeding in their life.

Stop Worrying Start Living Confidently

3. Unstoppable Confidence

This book touches on NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) to help you get out of your comfort zone and master your self-confidence.    If you are unfamiliar with NLP, it is basically a scientific approach to communication, personal development, and psychotherapy that delivers practical ways in which you can change the way you think, view past events, and approach your life.

Much of this book uses ideas and concepts that Tony Robbins suggests for improving self-confidence, and they’ll work for you too.  ‘Unstoppable Confidence’ can teach you how to harness confidence levels that will make you, well…unstoppable.

Unstoppable Confidence Book

4. Think and Grow Rich

‘Think and Grow Rich’ is so much more than a confidence book, it is a success book.  However, the author, Napoleon Hill, understood that success requires a strong foundation built on self-confidence.

As such, the book provides a handful of potent insights and formulas that can help you gain the confidence you’ll need to start growing more successful, and yes even richer in your life.

This book is a must read for every person.  If you practice his self-confidence formula alone, you can dramatically improve your confidence in no time at all.

Think and Grow Confident

5. How to Talk to Anyone

Many people are confident in just about everything they do.  But for some people, when it comes to talking to people, they clam up, get anxious, and come across as less than self-assured.

If you’ve ever felt a lack of confidence when communicating with colleagues, strangers, or the opposite sex, this book can help you with crushing those feelings of uncertainty.

Having confidence when speaking with people is one of the most important skills you could acquire for successfully navigating your way to the top of your career.  If you know your confidence lacks in the ‘people department’ then you must read this book.

How to Talk to Anyone with Confidence

6. The Magic of Thinking Big

David Schwartz Ph.D. has created a masterful book with ‘The Magic of Thinking Big’, which is why over 6 million copies of the book have been sold.

In this book, Dr. Schwartz touches on many key areas that we all need to improve on to start succeeding in life.  Much of the book revolves around improving how you think about situations, people, and your future.  It deals with how to improve you attitude and perspectives, which in turn will help you to start taking the action necessary to reach your BIG goals.

Chapters 3 ‘Build Confidence and Destroy Fear’, Chapter 10 ‘Get the Action Habit’, Chapter 11 ‘How to Turn Defeat into Victory’, and Chapter 13 ‘How to Think Like a Leader’ are the most effective chapters for building your self-confidence.

All in all, this is one of my favorite self confidence books, and its probably the one confidence building book you can’t afford to miss.

Magic of Thinking Big

7. How to Develop Self-Confidence and Influence People by Public Speaking

Dale Carnegie has created the perfect toolset for helping people dial into their confidence at will.  This book contains multiple confidence boosting tips that will help you acquire poise, increase your memory, improve the delivery of your message, and appear more charming to everyone you interact with.

This book was created to teach people how to overcome their fears of public speaking; however, the strategies he provides to help you increase your confidence to speak in front of large audiences can also be applied towards overcoming other confidence issues in other areas of your life.

How you ask?  Because when you master public speaking, you simultaneously wipe out your timidity and gain the courage and assurance to deal with people.  In short, confidence gained in one department will help you gain the confidence you may need in others.

How to Develop Self-Confidence Book

8. You Are a Badass

‘You Are a Badass’ by Jen Sincero, is not specifically geared towards improving confidence; however, it covers a wide range of self-improvement topics that when combined, can help you strengthen your over all sense of self, and with that, your confidence.

Within the book there is a chapter specifically for confidence, titled, ‘Fear Is For Suckers’.  This chapter provides some great perspectives on fear and confidence that can help you significantly boost your confidence.

You Are a Badass

9. Presence

Amy Cuddy is the famous TED talk professor who first acquainted us with power poses and using our physiology to increase our confidence levels.

Well, she helps deliver a similar message in this book, and she does it with detail and backs it all up with solid research.

When you read this book, be prepared to learn about the power of your personal story, how to overcome impostor syndrome, and how to utilize you posture to level up your confidence.

As a student of confidence, this is one book you won’t want to miss.

Best Confidence Books

10. The Confidence Gap

This book is a great confidence book to compliment the others already mentioned.  This book does what it says, it fills the confidence gap.

How does it do this?  Well, it does this by giving the readers a different perspective on dealing with their confidence or lack thereof.  Russ Harris offers a novel solution to confidence by encouraging you to form a different relationship with your confidence, instead of trying to force yourself to overcome your confidence limitations.

In this book you will learn about the power of mindfulness and some techniques for keeping your negative thoughts and feelings at bay so your confidence levels can soar.

This book is certainly worth the read and it will truly help fill some of the confidence gaps we all face.

Confidence Book

11. The Power of Self-Confidence

Brian Tracy is a seasoned sales/business guru who knows a thing or two about success.  Truth is, it is hard to lose with Brian Tracy in your corner.  He’s pushed out countless resources ranging from self-discipline, to time-management, to self-confidence.

And in just about all of his resources, you’ll hear him mention the importance of your inner-game, of your mindset and how you feel about yourself.

Without a doubt, this book will help you understand why it is so essential to have faith in your abilities and believe in yourself.

Read this book and build the unshakable confidence you know deep down in your heart you are capable of wielding.

Power of Self Confidence Book

12. The Art of Extraordinary Confidence

Comfort is the kiss of death to success.  And in this book, you will learn why.

As such, you’ll find plenty of admonishments in this book to step outside of your comfort zone, and in so doing, dramatically strengthen your confidence levels.

If you are okay with real-talk, truth, and zero punches being pulled, you will enjoy this book.  Beware though, this is not a PG book.  It will speak to you as an adult, so be prepared for a good push.

Best Confidence Books

13. The Six Pillars of Self-Esteem

This book will wake you up to what true confidence is all about.  Author, Nathaniel Branden provides firm answers to questions we all have related to our confidence and self-esteem.

If you’re looking for answers, you’ll find them here.  You’ll learn what self-esteem really is, you’ll learn why it is so important to cultivate it, how you can increase your own self-esteem levels, and what role our external environment (other people) plays in our confidence levels.

Without a doubt, you’ll be sure to find many ‘Aha!’ moments in this book, and a solid foundation to building up your self-esteem, and with it, your confidence.

Best Confidence Books

Become an Extrovert, Even If You’re Shy -> Click Here

14. Unleash The Warrior Within

‘Unleash The Warrior Within’ is authored by former Navy SEAL Richard Machowicz.  And as you’d suspect, he provides tons of confidence boosting strategies that he acquired from his time in the military.

Richard has you break down your fears into smaller, bite sized components, making them much easier to attack.  He also spends time educating his readers on the importance of mindset.

As a fan of the warrior ethos, I enjoy how the author combats those areas of our lives that can hold us back and keep us from doing what we need to do most to achieve our goals.   If you want more confidence, read this book, you can’t go wrong.

Unleash the Warrior

15. Psycho-Cybernetics

Don’t let the name of this book scare you.  It may sound daunting and super scientific, but rest assured that the material contained within it will be easy to digest and better yet, easy to implement towards building up your self-confidence.

The author of the book, Maxwell Maltz holds a Ph.D. and lays out his years of his experience and observation on how powerful self-image is when it comes to helping us achieve the results we are after.  You’ll learn about the power of perception, self-esteem, and how large a role our self-image can play in our ability to achieve.  So, If you’re looking for a time tested book on confidence that is based in science, this is a book everyone should read.

Confidence Books

16.  The Power of Positive Thinking

I know what your thinking, what does positive thinking have to do with Confidence.  But here me out.  This book, with out a doubt belongs in this selection of the best books on confidence because of the wisdom provided chapter after chapter by the late great Norman Vincent Peale specifically for helping its readers lead a more positive and confident life.

Now, just as a heads up, the wisdom provided in this great book does have religious undertones too them; however, this is exactly where much of the power of this book comes in to play.  So, if you are not religious, or don’t care for biblical references you can skip this book and read all the others, BUT, I assure you, you’ll be cutting yourself short if you do so.  If you’ve read all the confidence books in the world, and yet you still feel like you are coming up short in the confidence department, well then you’ll definitely want to invest in this book.  It WILL help your conquer your confidence and self-esteem challenges and instill in you the faith to conquer your internal/external fears.

Confidence Books

17.  Negative Self-Talk and How to Change It

This is a great book to add to your library of books that can help you boost your confidence levels.  The premise of the books revolves around what negative self-talk is, why you should work to minimize the amount of it you do, and how to go about doing so.

It really is a great tool/book to consider for helping you build your confidence because of the important role our self-talk plays in how we feel about ourselves.  Essentially, lots of negative self-talk leads to feeling less confident and less negative self-talk essentially leads to feeling more confident.

As such, this is a worthy book to own to help you get a handle on your negative inner voice, and as a result, positively improve your confidence levels.

Negative Self Talk Book on Confidence

18. The 5 Second Rule

Mel Robbins brings a whole new definition to confidence in this book. She’ll help dispel the myth the confidence is merely a lack of belief in yourself, but rather, it’s the willingness or unwillingness to try.

Without a doubt, you’ll walk away from this book realizing that confidence is related to action. And you’ll begin to realize that confidence doesn’t start with belief, but rather, confidence starts with action. And since Mel’s book is primarily about action, we could not deny adding her book to our invaluable list of books on confidence.

So, use this book to push yourself to be better than your excuses and bigger than your fears.

5 Second Rule Book for Confidence

19. Daring Greatly

Brené Brown’s Daring Greatly is the wake up call we all need. She doesn’t pull any punches and definitely tells it like it is in this book. Which is why it made the cut for our no B.S. list of self-confidence books. The biggest take away you’ll get from this book is that it is okay to be vulnerable. Her book provides a great combination of solid research and casual storytelling that will help you ease into being more being more vulnerable. And the more vulnerable you allow yourself to be, the more confident you’ll become as you come to realize you can handle whatever it is life is happening to throw your way.

So, if you’re looking for a book to dare you to step outside of your comfort zone, to be bigger than your anxieties, and to get you living and leading more confidently, then this book is a must read.

Daringly Greatly Confidence Book

20. Go Fearless

‘Go Fearless’ is a synthesis of the best confidence boosting tactics from many of the self confidence books just mentioned.  It was written by yours truly, after riding the confidence roller coaster for many years.  After going from outgoing and confident to feeling shy and withdrawn for many years, I set out to re-discover the confidence and fearlessness I had in my youth.  After learning how to bounce back into the outgoing and confident person I knew I was capable of being, I decided to share what I learned.

This book does not waste your time with drawn out stories or background, it gives you exactly what you need to know, NOW, so you can get started on building your confidence ASAP.

If there were ever a shortcut to learning how to master self-confidence, this book would be it.  It’s a confidence building workbook, a tool, and a true call to action.

So, if you’re looking for a no B.S. guide to help you start living your life like a lion, and not a lamb, go get this book and ‘Go Fearless’!  Your future self will thank you for it.

Get Confident Go Fearless

Final Words on These Self Confidence Books

There you have it, the 20 best books you can read to get started on mastering the one thing that can make all the difference in how much success you’ll find in your life; confidence.

After you’ve read these books for self-confidence improvement, you’ll realize that having a sense of confidence is nothing but a sense of power within yourself, a sense of certainty that you can pull off just about anything.

Read these books and you’ll finally come to understand what confidence really is, and you’ll learn that you have the power to create it at any moment in time.

To Your Success!

STRIVE

PS – If you’ve enjoyed this article on the best self confidence books, then you’ll also enjoy this piece on ‘The 7 Ways to Gain Instant Confidence’.

High effort, self-discipline, and fearless action are “my things”.  If you could use a bit more of these life-enhancing attributes, or if you want to be nudged from time to time to start taking action on your goals and dreams, follow me on Twitter.

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