5 Of The Best Self Development Books To Read To Kickstart 2024


Although I’m not quite ready to set any New Years Resolutions, I am busy reflecting on the year just gone and what I want to work on for 2024. I published my first book last year, which was a HUGE achievement for me. I also read just shy of 4 books a month, which had been another of my goals. Can you spot the bookish theme here?

When embarking on any sort of reflection and goal setting, I find it immensley helpful to read self development books. Not the ones obsessed with productivity and hustle culture though- I am not interested in working my way up the corporate ladder, or monetising everything I enjoy doing!

Instead I’m referring to those books which are more gentle and reflective in nature. Books that encourage readers to be their best selves, without the push for greater productivity. If you’re looking for gentle encouragement, and help in reflecting on where you’ve been and where you want to go- check out these titles.

The Artist’s Way- Julia Cameron

I had to include this book- even though I confess I have never made it through the entire six weeks. But what is so wonderful about it is that I feel I have learned something every time I have used it- if only for the odd week or two here and there.

Don’t let the title put you off- I certainly don’t consider myself an artist. If you consider yourself in any way creative, or if you want to feel more creative- this is the book for you. Each week Cameron lays out various exercises for you to try, alongside her own reflections of her decades long career in writing. Even if you dip in and out of it like I did, I feel everyone can benefit from this book.

Soulful Simplicity- Courtney Carver

This book is the literal opposite of those “Work harder, work smarter, work!” titles that dominate the marketplace right now. Carver takes you through her concious decision to move away from perpetual busy-ness, into a simple and uncluttered life. This isn’t a get rid of everything you own minimalism book- it’s much more focused on the benefits of not letting our “stuff” rule our lives, and the freedom that comes from owning less, and thus doing less.

Elevate The Everyday- Jennifer Melville

I’m a HUGE fan of Jennifers books! They are short, actionable and to the point. Elevate the Everyday is all about taking small actions to infuse your day to day life with a bit of magic, romanticism and elegance. This book touches on a broad array of topics such as health, home, finances- even your wardrobe and beauty routines! If you’re feeling a bit meh about your day to day life, this is the book for you. It’s also the first book of the Elevate series which dive into topics such as health, style and finances in more detail.

100 Ways To Be That Girl- Fiona Ferris

Fiona Ferris is another favourite of mine. Her books are also succint and to the point, often following a list type layout which I find easy to read and action. Being “That Girl” (See also: Main Character Energy) had a big moment on social media last year, and this guide has 100 ways for you to achieve that feeling in your own life. I also appreciate the fact that Fiona is embracing this in her fifties- as this trend was clearly aimed at Gen Z’ers, but why should they get all the fun? This is part of the 100 Ways series with other books focused on topics such as wellbeing, decluttering and living a luxurious life on a budget.

Manifest: 7 Steps To Living Your Best Life- Roxie Nafousi

If you’re interested in the idea of manifeting, but are put off by the “fluff” that accompanies it, this is the book for you. Roxie lays out the concept of manifestation sans the fluff- and gives you an easy to follow 7 step guide to manifesting your desires. She really dives in to the how and why behind manifesting, leaving you with a clear idea on how it works, and thus more willing to give it a go.

Have you read any of these? Do you have any other suggestions for gentle self development books? Let me know in the comments!


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  1. That is so cool you wrote a book. Congratulations!! Also, great list of books that are right up my alley. I read the Artist’s Way but haven’t read the others. They are now on my queue.

  2. I have read some of these but there are a few that I havenโ€™t heard of and they are now on my list! Thank you for sharing! Fantastic post ๐Ÿ™‚

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