Top 5 Inspirational Books for 2014

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2013 wasn’t the best, but at the very least, it inspired change. Throughout the year, I read–and re-read— a few of the most constructive and motivating non-fiction literature I’ve ever had the pleasure of owning. These memoirs and anecdotes genuinely touched my heart and lit a fire under my feet. Not all of them were published last year; in fact, some of them are relatively old… still relevant nonetheless. If you’re in the mood for a few good reads, pop these babies open!


one | “Lean In” by Sheryl Sandberg

Sheryl Sandberg–Facebook COO, ranked eighth on Fortune’s list of the 50 Most Powerful Women in Business–has become one of America’s most galvanizing leaders, and an icon for millions of women juggling work and family. In her Lean In, she urges women to take risks and seek new challenges, to find work that they love, and to remain passionately engaged with it at the highest levels throughout their lives.


two | “Secrets of Six-Figure Women” by Barbara Stanny

Quietly and steadily, the number of women making six figures or more is increasing and continues to rise at a rate faster than for men. From entrepreneurs to corporate executives, from white-collar professionals to freelancers and part-timers, women are forging careers with considerable financial success. 
In Secrets of Six-Figure Women, Barbara Stanny, journalist, motivational speaker,and financial educator, identifies the seven key strategies of female highearners: A Profit Motive, Audacity, Resilience, Encouragement, Self-Awareness, Non-attachment, and Financial Know-How.

three | “The Introvert Advantage” by Marti Olsen Laney

At least one out of four people prefers to avoid the limelight, tends to listen more than they speak, feels alone in large groups, and requires lots of private time to restore their energy. They’re introverts, and here is the book to help them boost their confidence while learning strategies for successfully living in an extrovert world. 

After dispelling common myths about introverts-they’re not necessarily shy, aloof, or antisocial–The Introvert Advantage explains the real issues. Introverts are hardwired from birth to focus inward, so outside stimulation-chitchat, phone calls, parties, office meetings-can easily become “too much.”


four | ” I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban” by Malala Yousafzai

When the Taliban took control of the Swat Valley, one girl spoke out. Malala Yousafzai refused to be silenced and fought for her right to an education. On Tuesday October 9, 2012, she almost paid the ultimate price. When she was shot in the head at point blank range while riding the bus home from school, few expected her to survive. 

I AM MALALA is the remarkable tale of a family uprooted by global terrorism, of the fight for girls’ education, and of Malala’s parents’ fierce love for their daughter in a society that prizes sons.


five | “David and Goliath” by Malcolm Gladwell 

Malcolm Gladwell, the #1 bestselling author of The Tipping Point, Blink, Outliers, and What the Dog Saw, offers his most provocative–and dazzling–book yet. We all know that underdogs can win-that’s what the David versus Goliath legend tells us, and we’ve seen it with our own eyes. Or have we? In DAVID AND GOLIATH, Malcolm Gladwell, with his unparalleled ability to grasp connections others miss, uncovers the hidden rules that shape the balance between the weak and the mighty, the powerful and the dispossessed.

Gladwell examines the battlefields of Northern Ireland and Vietnam, takes us into the minds of cancer researchers and civil rights leaders, and digs into the dynamics of successful and unsuccessful classrooms-all in an attempt to demonstrate how fundamentally we misunderstand the true meaning of advantages and disadvantages. When is a traumatic childhood a good thing? When does a disability leave someone better off? Do you really want your child to go to the best school he or she can get into? Why are the childhoods of people at the top of one profession after another marked by deprivation and struggle? 


Now I just need y’all’s help… what books will inspire me in 2014? Recommendations?


Happy Saturday! Have a wonderful weekend!

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38 thoughts on “Top 5 Inspirational Books for 2014

  1. Kerry Rivera

    I'm always looking for new books to read. I read Lean In last week and it is one I think every woman should read. I'm also now in the middle of David and Goliath. So far so good, but not one of my favorite Gladwell books. Looking forward to checking out the others. Stopping by from SITS!

    1. [email protected] Post author

      I personally liked The Tipping Point better, too, but I still thought it was a great read. Couldn't agree more about Lean In… it's a must read for all women! Hope you have a great week!

  2. Brittania Ruth

    I had to read lean in for one of my graduate courses. It was like a women's studies elective. Such a good read. I've been hearing about the introvert. I think I should probably read it. Though I don't know if I can agree with "hardwired since birth." I used to be an extravert and am now more of an introvert but everyone has a mixture of both.

    1. [email protected] Post author

      It actually talks about that in the book. It's a widely assumed misconception about those who identify as introverts… many of us are in more of a gray territory than we realize. Definitely a good read! 🙂

  3. Ashley Nicholas

    Thanks for the recommendations! I've been on a huge reading kick lately, so I'll definitely put these on my iPad. My mom made me read The Seven Habits of Highly Successful People a few years ago, and I loved it!

    1. [email protected] Post author

      Trust me, I know. I go through phases where I won't read for months, and I have to force myself to shut off the TV and computer in order to get back into a groove. You'll get there! 🙂


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