A while back I was listening to a podcast or training  (I wish I could tell you who or where because it was really great) and the speaker said something that struck me.  She reminded us that each and every one of us has access to the best teachers and mentors in the world, we may never meet them in real life, and they may even be dead, but they are available.  How so?  Books.  Podcasts.  Audible.   

Before 2016 I don’t think I would have dreamed of actually picking up a “self-help” book.  I considered non-fiction incredibly boring.  Why the heck would I want to use my free time for something that would not entertain me?  Why not just sit in front of the television?  Why not just zone out? I work hard and need a break – give me a break!  Not homework.  Not a lecture.  

But also in 2016 . . . I suffered from anxiety, imposter syndrome, felt down in the dumps, felt alone . . . I was complaining about all these things and a mentor of mine said, “Well Wendy, what are you doing for personal development.”  “Personal Development?  What’s that?”  She listed some books and I said “OH – you mean self-help books?  Yeah.  No. I don’t have time for that.”  (And heck, I was a lawyer, I was a partner, wasn’t I as far as I could get?  I had a husband and had my kids.  I had my dream house.  I had it all.  Did I NEED help?!  Come on now!  But . . . days and weeks went by and I still felt the same.  I complained again.  “WENDY – what are you doing for PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT!?”  “Ok, I’ll try, but I have no time!”  “Fine – download Audible and listen to the Five Second Rule on your way to and from work”  “About food!!??”  “No – just trust me – do it.”  So I did.  

Ten minutes into my first ever Audible – The 5 Second Rule by Mel Robbins.  I was hooked.  More than hooked.  Listening to Mel (a fellow lawyer!) made me feel less alone in my anxiety.  Implementing her advice WORKED.  My life began to change for the better.  Now, I am so hooked on personal development, that 5 years later it is way harder for me to pick up fiction.  If you take a look at my bookshelves and Amazon Cart, you will see they are overflowing with many (many) personal development books.  

Even if I never get a chance to meet or chat with you, I want you to have access to some of my greatest teachers . . . here is a list of my favorites  – in no particular order.  Also, you should know, because I am linking to these books, Amazon does me a solid by sending me a finders fee.  It is like 20 cents.  But hey, it costs you no extra and it helps me out so I can keep all of my blogging ad-free (little things add up).

In no particular order . . . 

The 5 Second Rule: Transform your Life, Work, and Confidence with Everyday Courage

By Mel Robbins


I recommend listening to this one on Audible!  It was incredibly powerful to HEAR the power of the 5 Second Rule.

Girl, Wash Your Face: Stop Believing the Lies About Who You Are So You Can Become Who You Were Meant to Be 

By Rachel Hollis


I read and listened to this.  I recommend listening.  Same as above.  Some of Rachel’s words will forever be etched in my brain.  I know she has suffered from a lot of heat in the last year, but there are some nuggets in that book for which I will forever be grateful. 

The Road Back to You: An Enneagram Journey to Self-Discovery

by Ian Morgan Cron and Suzanne Stabile


I am obsessed with the Enneagram.  (I am a 7 in case you were wondering! Married to a 9).  Learning my Enneagram number this past year has been HUGE in terms of self-realization, bettering my marriage (I nag less), with my kids (I understand them more), as a colleague (I see why certain relationships were never meant to go smoothly), and a friend (I see how I can rub some the wrong way – or at least why I THINK I run some the wrong way and also why I have the amazing friends I do).  Really, this book has been HUGELY instrumental.  Buy the book so you can underline the heck out of it.

Everything Is Figureoutable

By Maria Forleo


This book has a great message and is great for self-starters who want to start out alone and know they have the fortitude to hold their own selves accountable.  I love the homework at the end of each chapter! 

Mindset: The New Psychology of Success

By Carol S. Dweck


Fascinating read.  

Everybody Fights: So Why Not Get Better at It?


By Kim and Penn Holderness 

I love all things Holderness family.  Do you watch their videos?  If not, get on that.  They make the best YouTube videos. This book is fun to read, lets you get to know them better, and helps you figure out a better way to fight with your spouse.  

Everything Beautiful in Its Time: Seasons of Love and Loss

By Jenna Bush Hager


This is a beautiful memoir written by Jenna Bush Hager.  

#FutureBoards: Learn How to Create a Vision Board to Get Exactly the Life You Want

By Sarah Centrella


Stop trying to create a “vision board” on your own.  This book is the only thing you need to make a Future Board. I look at mine every day!  I wrote a blog about it a while ago here:  https://lawfullylean.com/2020/01/27/vision-lets-get-a-little-deeper/ 

One Person/Multiple Careers: The Original Guide to the Slash Career (Volume 1)

By Marci Alboher


This book settled my mind and insecurities about having multiple careers.

Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person

By Shonda Rhimes


If you are a Shonda Rhimes fan, this book is everything.  Even if you aren’t, it still is amazing.  If you are a Peloton Fan, there is a whole Peloton series devoted to the Year of Yes!  I highly recommend those rides and yoga practices! 

The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are 

By Brene Brown


You probably have heard of Brene Brown.  This book helped heal some deep wounds I had been carrying around for too long.

The Miracle Morning: The Not-So-Obvious Secret Guaranteed to Transform Your Life (Before 8AM) 

By Hal Elrod


I am a morning person (easily) but I love how this book might help a non-morning person become one.

The Energy Bus: 10 Rules to Fuel Your Life, Work, and Team with Positive Energy

By Jon Gordon


This is a cute way to get into personal development via a story.  It is an easy read and maybe a kick in the pants!

The Clever Gut Diet: How to Revolutionize Your Body from the Inside Out
By Dr. Michael Mosley 


This book is all about food and your gut.  I could not put it down.  I was riveted.  

This is just a small sampling of what I have read – but these are my favorites.   Each and every one of these books left its mark on me and somehow was 100% what I needed to hear at that time.  Don’t be like 2016 Wendy . . . if you think you could benefit from any of these, apply the 5-second rule and 5-4-3-2-1 – order a book and dive in!  

If you have any to add, please comment below in the comment section!


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