As female professionals, we all know we have unique hurdles to overcome. Doing so sometimes requires unique inspiration. You don’t have to go far to find any. Quotes, social media posts, and news articles with inspiring stories all flood our phone screens daily. Inspiration is essential to help us stay disciplined and work on our goals. In my humble opinion, reading books is the best way to get inspiration and really learn about a topic and add to your repertoire.
Which are the best inspirational books for women on their road to success? This list is compiled from TFP and fellow female professionals across the internet blogosphere. See what they have to say and where they have received inspiration in pursuing their goals.
16 Must-Read Inspirational Books For Women
This list is an accumulation of several female professionals plus TFP’s own recommendations for inspirational books for women. These are books every woman should consider reading. Be sure to add them to your reading list. Make this year your best year yet!
My Life in Full by Indra Nooyi
Dr. Alopi Patel, an anesthesiologist and lifestyle medicine physician in New York City, and co-founder of The Hurt, a podcast aimed at empowering women with their health, highly recommend this book.
Indra Nooyi was the CEO of PepsiCo for several years and somehow managed to balance a thriving career with a family. As women, we are often told that we may not have both a happy family or a successful career. Indra Nooyi discussed the societal challenges for women who want both and how we can support women and men who want to have families and careers.
I always assumed I cannot “have it all,” but in this book, Indra Nooyi redefines what having it all means and how to successfully navigate the most challenging years of our lives.
We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
This international bestseller is a TFP recommendation. The author, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, gives us a unique definition of feminism. Drawing extensively on her own experiences, here is one author’s exploration of what it means to be a woman now and why we should all be feminists.
For anyone wary of the term “feminism”, it is not exactly what you think. This text is a great entry point to educate yourself about the issue and be inspired by the grit and determination of one woman working to redefine how the world sees women.
Good Vibes, Good Life by Vex King
This is somewhat of a self-help book that gives insight into how to be your best self by focusing on self-love. It helps the reader understand how to transform negative emotions into positive ones, creating the life you want.
For me, this book helped me gain the confidence I needed to succeed in the finance world.Jenna from The Stock Dork
Shoe Dog by Phil Knight
The founder of Nike has plenty of excellent lessons for all of us to learn. If you’re a businesswoman, or another professional making their way up the ranks, Shoe Dog can help teach you how to proceed with integrity. Phil Knight does a great job describing how he got started, all the bumps in the road along the way, and what kept him going when times got tough.
Shoe Dog tells you everything you should do when starting a business, or growing one.The Female Professional
Moment of Lift by Melinda Gates
Here at TFP, this book has been incredibly inspiring. Philanthropist Melinda Gates talks about her work with the Gates Foundation as it relates to women’s health, family planning, and women’s rights. The work they’ve done, and the stories she tells, are eye-opening.
If you ever need a way to help you put things into perspective, this book will do it. I personally, after reading it, called my Dad and thanked him for emphasizing education and being so crazy about it on my behalf while I was growing up. Women in different areas simply don’t have access to or are denied this fundamental right.
This book helps inspire gratitude for what you have and will motivate you to utilize all the resources you are blessed to have at your fingertips. After reading this, you will not take anything for granted anymore.
How to Be a Bad Ass by Jen Sincero
The book that started me down the road to self-development was This book lit a fire under me and made me realize that there are so many possibilities out there and I am capable of achieving all of my wildest dreams. The way Jen writes is easy to digest and really stays with you. This book kept me glued to the pages and I couldn’t put it down. If you’re in need of a motivational boost this book is it. You won’t be disappointed.Victoria @ Motherhood Life Balance
TFP thoughts: I can vouch for this book too. I read it with equal results in the motivational boost department. Success coach Jen Sincero gives you an easy read and helps you see your obstacles from a different perspective while helping you overcome them.
Untamed by Glennon Doyle
Kayla from Motivation for Mom always recommends this book to women. In the book, the author Glennon talks about her trials and triumphs as she has to make a few really hard decisions. She was already a well-established author but felt she hadn’t shared her truth, and she knew that the world would look at her differently if she did. But she decides to do the courageous act of opening up to the world about her true self.
She decides that part of being a good mom and the best example to her children includes being proud of who you are and how far you’ve come. I think every woman should read this book to feel more empowered. If you need any more convincing, this book is recommended as Reese Witherspoon’s book club pick!
The braver we are, the luckier we get.Glennon Doyle
My Own Words by Ruth Bader Ginsberg
This is the first book from Ruth Bader Ginsburg since becoming a Supreme Court Justice in 1993. It’s a collection of her writings and speeches over the course of her career. Topics covered include gender equality, the inner workings of the Supreme Court, life as a Jewish woman, and the value of looking beyond US shores when interpreting the US Constitution.
As one of America’s most influential women, Bader Ginsberg devoted her life to empowering women and improving their ability to be independent. We all owe her a lot of gratitude for her work and for changing life as a woman as we know it.
The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo
If you haven’t heard of the book, perhaps you’ve heard of the Netflix series that came from it. Marie Kondo achieved fame by creating a new way to tidy up and declutter your home. In her stepwise approach, you not only get rid of stuff you don’t need or use, but you also choose to only keep the things that bring you joy. According to my friend Karee from Our Woven Journey you don’t have to follow the book’s recommendations to a “T” to benefit from it.
Reading this book for the first time was a welcome breath of fresh air for me. It gave me the direction I needed to be able to just start.Karee, Our Woven Journey
For Karee, with six kids at home, Kondo’s book helped her create a new sense of order in the house. Even without implementing every strategy (you don’t need to be a minimalist!), the book inspires and encourages people to look at their things differently. Further, she states that as a work-from-home Mom, a more organized house brings peace, and allows for more creativity while working. More productivity means more travel, which makes this book worth telling other women about!
Hopefully, these tidying up and de-cluttering ideas can encourage someone else to get organized and focus on what matters!
TFP Thoughts: I’ve seen many episodes of the Netflix series and put her techniques into practice. It works! There’s nothing like tidying up to help you feel organized and motivated to tackle the next thing.
Law Of Attraction by Esther Hicks
This book focuses on creating your dream life and getting what you want. Whether that’s starting your own business, building a money-making machine, or taking more time away from work with your girlfriends. The book’s premise is that focus will bring clarity, and your attention will naturally go to what you want to manifest. When you’re taking action from focus and determination, you feel excited about the action and putting in the work. If you’re interested in manifestation or want clarity on what to do next, this is a must-read book for women!
I have always loved reading, and it’s a fantastic way to learn new things. This is the first book on manifestation that I have ever read, and it’s had a profound impact on how I see things. It’s helped me focus on how you want to feel and work on my finances through money affirmations.Marjolein, Radical FIRE
Work Less Make More, by James Schramko
The book is excellent for those who want to learn a simple system that is effective in building a business. Running a business can be overwhelming, but James does a fantastic job of breaking things down and making complicated situations easier to digest. He gives value to his audience by making the book fun and easy to read.
If you are a person who wants to get out of the rat race or an individual who wants their side hustle to become a business, this is a highly recommended book for you. You’ll learn from another person’s experiences and mistakes and gain wisdom and insight on building a business. This book will open your eyes to new possibilities in thinking and making decisions.
I highly recommend this book if you are running a business and are struggling to accomplish everything. If you want more time and money, you have to invest in yourself by learning the system and setting it up for yourself. By reading this book, you’ll understand the importance of time and money and get to live a life you truly love.Cindy The Money Dreamer
These insights can be particularly helpful for those who like to travel off the beaten path and do their own thing!
The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferriss
While the book may contain some inapplicable concepts to our work-life here, it’s a fascinating read full of insightful information. The reader can adapt many of the principles mentioned to modern business practices or other aspects of daily life. In addition, the book discusses tactics in dealing with difficult people.
What I liked most about his book is his emphasis, explanation, and implementation of the 80/20 rule. He explores how this approach to life can help you achieve more with less. It goes like this: 80% of results come from 20% of the effort. I find that to be amazing. It is a concept that I remember constantly and has changed the way I do things in my business and life. It’s a book that I buy occasionally for my friends as a gift and that I highly recommend.
Your Money or Your Life by Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez
Robin and Dominguez paint a jaw-dropping picture of the true cost of our work for money. Their solution? A framework for rethinking how we spend, save, and invest. They believe that more important than anything else we can buy, money can help us create personal freedom. Often cited as one of the founding documents of the modern FIRE (financial independence / retire early) movement, Your Money or Your Life is a truly inspiring read for anyone looking to evolve their money mindset.
According to Sam at Smarter and Harder, books that explore money aside from just numbers, graphs, and the mechanics of investing and “getting rich,” but the kind of books that transform your whole relationship with money is worth the read.
Every relationship in your life is important and can enhance or be a detriment to your health. Your relationship with money is no exception. A book like this can help you overcome your mental obstacles and establish a solid, healthy financial framework for how you live and spend!
Bad Blood by John Carreyou
As an alternative to Shoe Dog mentioned above, TFP also recommends Bad Blood. While Shoe Dog teaches you what you should do in business, Bad Blood teaches you exactly what not to do. Bad Blood goes over the story of Theranos, the Silicon Valley unicorn start-up that ultimately crashed and burned because its founder lied her way to the top.
It’s easy to get caught up in early success and push your way down that path while ignoring any red flags. It’s important to stop, acknowledge problems, and address them. Every business has its hiccups, and every path to success has difficulties. You cannot ignore them out of existence.
Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder by Arianna Huffington
This text helps you reconsider how you’re living life, define it for yourself, and evaluate if you are doing what you want to do for yourself. If you’re a wife, mother, daughter, or professional, it doesn’t matter. How you define success can have a huge impact on the decisions you make. Backed by research, Arianna Huffington helps us understand how to thrive in today’s ever-changing world.
Reading this book helped me redefine my meaning for success and focus more on building wealth than riches.Jacqueline from ParentPortfolio.com .
Books not only provide an escape from reality and allow us to delve into new topics or worlds, but they can also profoundly affect how we think, see and feel about the world around us.
These inspirational books for women have helped countless others and could help you too! No matter what you’re working on, take the time to get inspiration from books like these. They can be life-changing.