Personal Development

Want to become a better person? Good for you! You'll find advice and inspiration on these blogs.

Einstein: His Life And Universe takes a close look at the life of Albert Einstein, beginning in how his childhood shaped him, what his biggest discoveries and personal struggles were and how his focus changed in later years, without his genius ever fading until his very last moment.
Man’s Search For Meaning details holocaust survivor Viktor Frankl’s horrifying experiences in Nazi concentration camps, along with his psychological approach of logotherapy, which is also what helped him survive and shows you how you can – and must – find meaning in your life.
The Interpretation Of Dreams is Sigmund Freud’s seminal work on scientifically analyzing the deeper meaning hidden inside each and every one of our human dreams, which will help you make more sense of your own psyche.
Letters From A Stoic is a collection of moral epistles famous Roman Stoic and philosopher Seneca sent to his friend Lucilius, in order to help him become less emotional, more disciplined, and find the good life.
On The Shortness Of Life is a 2,000 year old, 20-page masterpiece by Seneca, Roman stoic philosopher and teacher to the emperors, about time and how to best use it, to ensure you lead a long and fulfilling life.
Leonardo Da Vinci is Walter Isaacson’s account of the life of one of the most brilliant artists, thinkers, and innovators who ever lived.
Benjamin Franklin: An American Life takes a thorough look at the life of one of the most influential humans that ever lived and explains how he could achieve such greatness in so many different fields and areas.
The Republic is one of the most important works about philosophy and politics in history, written by Plato, one of Socrates students in ancient Greece, as a dialogue about justice and political systems.
The Prince is a 16th century political treatise, famous for condoning, even encouraging evil behavior amongst political rulers, in order for them to stay in power.
Long Walk To Freedom is the autobiography of Nelson Mandela, South African anti-apartheid activist, national icon and the first South African black president, elected in the first, fully democratic election in the country.
The Autobiography Of Malcolm X chronicles the life and work of one of the most influential members of the civil rights movement in the United States.
The Four Agreements draws on the long tradition of the Toltecs, an ancient, indigenous people of Mexico, to show you that we have been domesticated from childhood, how these internal, guiding rules hurt us and what we can do to break and replace them with a new set of agreements with ourselves.
The Fifth Agreement is an update and sequel to one of the world’s most popular self-help books, which shines a new light on ancient, Toltec wisdom, to help us master our selves, cultivate deep awareness, and be who we really are.
Disrupt Yourself explains how you can harness the ever-accelerating power of disruptive innovation in your personal life, be it to advance your career or to build a company that thrives, by embracing your limitations, focusing on your strengths and staying flexible and curious along the way.
Emotional Agility provides a new, science-backed approach to navigating life’s many trials and detours on your path to fulfillment, with which you’ll face your emotions head on, observe them objectively, make choices based on your values and slowly tweak your mindset, motivation and habits.
How To Be Alone shows you that solitude not only has its benefits, but is a vital component of happiness and that you should embrace it and slowly discover what dosage you need, and why it’s okay to let society think you’re a bit weird sometimes.
Labor of Love illustrates the history of modern dating as we know it, starting from its origins in the late 1800s all the way to the dating websites and apps we know today.
The 5 Second Rule is a simple tool that undercuts most of the psychological weapons your brain employs to keep you from taking action, which will allow you to procrastinate less, live happier and reach your goals.
Habits Of A Happy Brain explains the four neurotransmitters in your brain that create happiness, why you can’t be happy all the time, and how you can rewire your brain by taking responsibility for your own hormones and thus, happiness.
Rookie Smarts argues against experience and for a mindset of learning in the modern workplace, due to knowledge growing and changing fast, which gives rookies a competitive advantage, as they’re not bound by common practices and the status quo.
The Upside Of Stress helps you change your mindset from one that avoids anxiety at all costs to a belief that embraces stress as a normal part of life, which helps you respond to it in better ways and actually be healthier.
Doughnut Economics is a wake-up call to transform our capitalist worldview obsessed with growth into a more balanced, sustainable perspective that allows both humans and our planet to thrive.
The Power Of No is an encompassing instruction manual for you to harness the power of this little word to get healthy, rid yourself of bad relationships, embrace abundance and ultimately say yes to yourself.
Loving What Is gives you four simple questions to turn negative thoughts around, change how you react to the events and people that stress you and thus end your own suffering to love reality as it is.
Dare To Lead dispels common myths about modern-day workplace culture and shows you that true leadership requires nothing but vulnerability, values, trust, and resilience.
Grit describes what creates outstanding achievements, based on science, interviews with high achievers from various fields and the personal history of success of the author, Angela Duckworth, uncovering that achievement isn’t reserved for the talented only, but for those with passion and perseverance.
13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do started as a personal reminder to not give in to bad habits in the face of adversity, but turned into a psychological guidebook to help you improve your mental strength and emotional resilience.
The Snowball is the only authorized biography of Warren Buffett, the “Oracle of Omaha,” legendary value investor and once richest man on earth, detailing his life from the very humble beginnings all the way to his unfathomable success.
Homo Deus illustrates the history of the human race from how we came to be the dominant species over what narratives are shaping our lives today all the way to which obstacles we must overcome next to continue to thrive.
21 Lessons For The 21st Century highlights today’s most pressing political, cultural, and economic challenges created by technology while helping us prepare for an uncertain future.
A Brief History Of Time is Stephen Hawking’s way of explaining the most complex concepts and ideas of physics, such as space, time, black holes, planets, stars and gravity to the average Joe, so that even you and I can better understand how our planet was created, where it came from, and where it’s going.
The Sunflower recounts an experience of holocaust survivor Simon Wiesenthal, in which he had to make a tough choice about whether to forgive or not, and explores over 50 different perspectives on forgiveness from people with various religious, cultural and ethnic backgrounds.
Linchpin shows you why the time of simply following instructions at your job is over and how to make yourself indispensable, which is a must for success today.
Imagine this. Anytime you set a goal for yourself, it’s as good as done. You have permanent motivation. You’ve worked on your craft, hobby, or business for so long that you barely remember being a novice at all...
Salt Sugar Fat takes you through the history of the demise of home-cooked meals by explaining why you love salt, sugar and fat so much and how the processed food industry managed to hook us by cramming all 3 of those into their products.
The Power Of Less shows you how to align your life with your most important goals, by finding out what’s really essential, changing your habits one at a time and working focused and productively on only those projects that will lead you to where you really want to go.
The Power of Now shows you that every minute you spend worrying about the future or regretting the past is a minute lost, because really all you have to live in is the present, the now, and gives you actionable strategies to start living every minute as it occurs.
A New Earth outlines a crazy and destructive place we call home, but not without showing us that we can all save it together, by looking into our minds and detaching ourselves from our ego, so we can practice acceptance and enjoyment.
The Seven Spiritual Laws Of Success brings together the spiritual calmness and mindful behavior of Eastern religions with Western striving for achieving internal and external success, showing you seven specific ways to let both come to you.
The Art Of Happiness is the result of a psychiatrist interviewing the Dalai Lama on how he personally achieved inner peace, calmness, and happiness.
Raise your hand if you’ve ever felt sorry for yourself.
Hackers And Painters is a collection of essays by Y Combinator founder Paul Graham about what makes a good computer programmer and how you can code the future if you are one, making a fortune in the process.
The Art Of Work is the instruction manual to find your vocation by looking into your passions, connecting them to the needs of the world, and thus building a legacy that’s bigger than yourself.
Real Artists Don’t Starve debunks all myths around the starving artist and shows you you can, will and deserve to make a living from your creative work.
The Upside Of Irrationality shows you the many ways in which you act irrational, while thinking what you’re doing makes perfect sense, and how this irrational behavior can actually be beneficial, as long as you use it the right way.
Payoff unravels the complex construct that is human motivation and shows you how it consists of many more parts than money and recognition, such as meaning, effort and ownership, so you can motivate yourself not just today, but every day.
Predictably Irrational explains the hidden forces that really drive how we make decisions, which are far less rational than we think, but can help us stay on top of our finances, interact better with others and live happier lives, once we know about them.
The Happiness Of Pursuit is a call to take control of your own life by going on a quest, which will fill your life with meaning, purpose, and a whole lot of adventure.
The Art of Non-Conformity teaches you how to play life by your own rules by giving you practical glimpses into the world of self-employment, a new approach to travel, to-do list minimalism and conscious spending habits.
Born For This shows you how to find the work you were meant to do, which actually might consist of many different forms of work over the course of your life, by showing you the power of a side hustle, proper risk-assessment, creating your own job and pursuing all of your passions – one at a time.
Factfulness explains how our worldview has been distorted with the rise of new media, which ten human instincts cause erroneous thinking, and how we can learn to separate fact from fiction when forming our opinions.
iWoz is Steve Wozniak’s autobiography, detailing his story in his own words, from early tinkering with electronics in his home, to college and his first job, all the way to singlehandedly creating the world’s first desktop computer, the Apple I and founding what would become the most valuable company in the world.
The 48 Laws Of Power draws on many of history’s most famous power quarrels to show you what power looks like, how you can get it, what to do to defend yourself against the power of others and, most importantly, how to use it well and keep it.
The Laws Of Human Nature helps you understand why people do what they do and how you can use both your own psychological flaws and those of others to your advantage at work, in relationships, and in life.
The Art Of Learning explains the science of becoming a top performer, based on Josh Waitzkin’s personal rise to the top of the chess and Tai Chi world, by showing you the right mindset, proper ways to practice and how to build the habits of a professional.
10% Happier gives skeptics an easy “in” to meditation, by taking a very non-fluffy approach to the science behind this mindfulness practice and showing you how and why letting go of your ego is important for living a stress-free life.
Outliers explains why “the self-made man” is a myth and what truly lies behind the success of the best people in their field, which is often a series of lucky events, rare opportunities and other external factors, which are out of our control.
Getting Things Done is a manual for stress-free productivity, which helps you set up a system of lists, reminders and weekly reviews, in order to free your mind from having to remember tasks and to-dos and instead let it work at full focus on the task at hand.
The Miracle Morning makes it clear that in order to become successful, you have to dedicate time to personal development each day, and then gives you a 6-step morning routine to create and shape that time.
Blink explains what happens when you listen to your gut feeling, why these snap judgments are often much more efficient than conscious deliberating, and how to avoid your intuition leading you to wrong assumptions.
Unlimited Power is a self-help classic, which breaks down how Tony Robbins has helped top performers achieve at their highest level and how you can use the same mental and physical tactics to accomplish your biggest goals in life.
Awaken The Giant Within is the psychological blueprint you can follow to wake up and start taking control of your life, starting in your mind, spreading through your body and then all the way through your relationships, work and finances until you’re the giant you were always meant to be.
The War Of Art brings some much needed tough love to all artists, business people and creatives who spend more time battling the resistance against work than actually working, by identifying the procrastinating forces at play and pulling out the rug from under their feet.
Do The Work is Steven Pressfield’s follow-up to The War Of Art, where he gives you actionable tactics and strategies to overcome resistance, the force behind procrastination.
Pre-Suasion takes you through the latest social psychology research to explain how marketers, persuaders and our environment primes us to say certain things and take specific actions, as well as how you can harness the same ideas to master the art of persuasion.
How Successful People Think lays out eleven specific ways of thinking you can practice to live a better, happier, more successful life.
Emotional Intelligence explains the importance of emotions in your life, how they help and hurt your ability to navigate the world, followed by practical advice on how to improve your own emotional intelligence and why that is the key to leading a successful life.
Principles holds the set of rules for work and life billionaire investor and CEO of the most successful fund in history, Ray Dalio, has acquired through his 40-year career in finance.
How To Win Friends And Influence People teaches you countless principles to become a likable person, handle your relationships well, win others over and help them change their behavior without being intrusive.
Leaders Eat Last teaches you where the need for leadership comes from historically, what the consequences of bad leadership are and how you can be a good leader in the modern world.
Find Your Why is an actionable guide to discover your mission in life, figure out how you can live it on a daily basis and share it with the world.
Smartcuts explains how some people and businesses achieve rapid growth and build sustainable, profitable companies in the time it takes you to get another promotion, by working smart, not hard and hacking into the ladder of success, instead of climbing it one step at a time.
The Truth sees Neil Strauss draw lessons about monogamy, love and relationships learned from depression, sex addiction treatment, swinger parties and science labs, in the decade after becoming one of the world’s most notorious pick-up artists and desired single men on the planet.
The Game is like a seat right next to Neil Strauss on his rollercoaster ride through the pickup community, where he gets hooked, successful, lost, wins and fails, until he finds his true self again.
Atomic Habits is the definitive guide to break bad behaviors and adopt good ones in four steps, showing you how small, incremental, everyday routines compound and add up to massive, positive change over time.
The Power Of Habit helps you understand why habits are at the core of everything you do, how you can change them, and what impact that will have on your life, your business and society.
Smarter Faster Better tells deeply researched stories from professionals around the world to show you how to do what you’re already doing in a better, more efficient way, by focusing on decisions, motivation and the way we set goals.
So Good They Can’t Ignore You sheds some much needed light on the “follow your passion” myth and shows you that the true path to work you love lies in becoming a craftsman of the work you already have, collecting rare skills and taking control of your hours in the process.
Year of Yes details famous TV-show creator Shonda Rhimes’s change from introversion to socialite by saying “Yes” to anything for a full year and how she was finally able to face her fears and start loving herself.
Option B shares the stories of people who’ve had to deal with a traumatizing event, most notably Facebook’s COO Sheryl Sandberg, to help you face adversity, become more resilient and find joy again after life punches you in the face.
Lean In digs deep into gender inequality and why women are still underrepresented as a valuable part of our global workforce, showing how they unintentionally hold themselves back, as well as outlining ways for us to enable and support them, including how you as a woman can take the lead and hold the flag of women in work high.
The Life-Changing Magic Of Tidying Up takes you through the process of simplifying, organizing and storing your belongings step by step, to make your home a place of peace and clarity.
You Are A Badass helps you become self-aware, figure out what you want in life and then summon the guts to not worry about the how, kick others’ opinions to the curb and focus your life on the thing that will make you happy.
Write It Down, Make It Happen is a simple guide to help you accomplish your goals through the act of writing, showing you how to use this basic skill to focus, address fears, and stay motivated.
Why We Love delivers a scientific explanation for love, shows you how it developed historically and evolutionarily, tells you what we’re all attracted to and where we differ, and of course gives you actionable advice to deal with both the exciting, successful romance in your life, as well as its sometimes inevitable fallout.
Big Magic is the book that’ll give you the courage you need to pursue your creative interests by showing you how to deal with your fears, notice ideas and act on them and take the stress out of creation.
The Desire Map gives your goal-setting mechanism a makeover by showing you that desire, not facts, is what fuels our lives and helps you rely on your feelings to navigate life, instead of giving in to the pressure of the outside world to check the boxes on goals that don’t really matter to you.
How To Become A Straight A Student gives you the techniques A+ students have used to pass college with flying colors and summa cum laude degrees, without compromising their entire lives and spending every minute in the library, ranging from time management and note-taking tactics all the way to how you can write a great thesis.
Deep Work proposes that we have lost our ability to focus deeply and immerse ourselves in a complex task, showing you how to cultivate this skill again and focus more than ever before with four simple rules.
The Gifts Of Imperfection shows you how to embrace your inner flaws to accept who you are, instead of constantly chasing the image of who you’re trying to be, because other people expect you to act in certain ways.
Rising Strong describes a 3-phase process of bouncing back from failure, which you can implement both in your own life and as a team or company, in order to embrace setbacks as part of life, deal with your emotions, confront your own ideas and rise stronger every time.
I Thought It Was Just Me (But It Isn’t) helps you understand and better manage the complicated and painful feeling of shame.
Thrive shines a light on the missing ingredient in our perception of success, which includes well-being, wonder, wisdom and giving, and goes beyond just money and power, which often drive people right into burnout, terrible health and unhappiness.
The Sleep Revolution paints a grim picture of Western sleep culture, but not without extending a hand to school kids, students, professionals and CEOs alike by offering genuine advice on how to stop wearing sleep deprivation as a badge of honor and finally get a good night’s sleep.
Originals re-defines what being creative means by using many specific examples of how persistence, procrastination, transparency, critical thinking and perspective can be brought together to change the world.
Tools Of Titans is a massive compendium of everything Tim Ferriss has learned about health, wealth and wisdom from interviewing over 200 world-class performers on his podcast, The Tim Ferriss show.
The 4-Hour Workweek is the step-by-step blueprint to free yourself from the shackles of a corporate job, create a business to fund the lifestyle of your dreams, and live life like a millionaire, without actually having to be one.
The 4-Hour Body is a complete guide to hacking your health, helping you achieve anything from rapid fat loss and quick muscle gain to better sleep, sex, and extreme athletic performance.
Tribe of Mentors is a collection of over 100 mini-interviews, where some of the world’s most successful people share their ideas around habits, learning, money, relationships, failure, success, and life.
The Obstacle Is The Way is a modern take on the ancient philosophy of Stoicism, which helps you endure the struggles of life with grace and resilience by drawing lessons from ancient heroes, former presidents, modern actors, athletes, and how they turned adversity into success, thanks to the power of perception, action and will.
Ego Is The Enemy reveals how a tendency that’s hardwired into our brains – the belief the world revolves around us and us alone – holds us back from living the life it makes us desire so much, what we can do to overcome it at every turn and how to achieve true greatness.
Vagabonding will change your relationship with money and travel by showing you that long-term life on the road isn’t reserved for rich people and hippies, and will give you the tools you need to start living a life of adventure, simplicity and content.
The Subtle Art Of Not Giving A F*ck does away with the positive psychology craze to instead give you a Stoic, no bullshit approach to living a life that might not always be happy, but meaningful and centered only around what’s important to you.
Essentialism shows you a new approach to productivity and life by allowing you to be extremely selective about the essential things in your life and then ruthlessly cutting out everything else.
To Sell Is Human shows you that selling is part of your life, no matter what you do, and what a successful salesperson looks like in the 21st century, with practical ideas to help you convince others in a more honest, natural and sustainable way.
When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing breaks down the science of time so you can stop guessing when to do things and pick the best times to work, eat, sleep, have your coffee and even quit your job.
Drive explores what has motivated humans throughout history and explains how we shifted from mere survival to the carrot and stick approach that’s still practiced today – and why it’s outdated.
The 80/20 Principle reveals how you can boost your effectiveness both in your own life and for your business by getting you in the mindset that not all inputs produce an equal amount of outputs and helping you embrace the Pareto principle.
Skin In The Game is an assessment of asymmetries in human interactions, aimed at helping you understand where and how gaps in uncertainty, risk, knowledge, and fairness emerge, and how to close them.
Fooled By Randomness explains how luck, uncertainty, probability, human error, risk, and decision-making work together to influence our actions, set against the backdrop of business and specifically, investing, to uncover how much bigger the role of chance in our lives is, than we usually make it out to be.
Antifragile reveals how some systems thrive from shocks, volatility and uncertainty, instead of breaking from them, and how you can adapt more antifragile traits yourself to thrive in an uncertain and chaotic world.
The Black Swan explains why we are so bad at predicting the future, and how unlikely events dramatically change our lives if they do happen, as well as what you can do to become better at expecting the unexpected.
Reinvent Yourself is a template for how to best adapt in a world in which the only constant is change, so that you may find happiness, success, wealth, meaningful work, and whatever else you desire in life.
Choose Yourself is James Altucher’s call to give up traditional career paths, which today neither lead to success, nor happiness, and take your life into your own hands by building good habits, creating your own career and making a decision to choose yourself.
How To Fail At Almost Everything And Still Win Big is the memoir of Dilbert cartoonist Scott Adams, in which he shares how he learned to take care of himself, so he could go from loss to loss, until eventually winning big.
I met a couple who were thinking of quitting their jobs and travelling the world for a year. They asked my thoughts.
Imagine you host a dinner party with two doctors and two accountants. You introduce the doctors to each other and the accountants to each other, assuming they’d have the most in common.
I’ve started writing my autobiography. I’ll keep writing it for the rest of my life. It’s private now, but will be released the week I die.
I used to like the internet. I thought it was cool, creative, wild, untamed, expressive, decentralized, and educational. I guess it was, back then, but now? I kinda hate most of what’s out there.
People with many interests often ask my advice on which industry or career path they should follow.
When you experience someone else’s genius work, a little part of you feels, “That’s what I could have, would have, and should have done!”
A few years ago, I thought it would be fun to get into camping.
My friend has a huge crush on someone.
Since I’m living in Europe now, I thought it would be good to tour everywhere in Europe, and get to know it better.
What do you call it when you skip school or work for a day, to do whatever you want instead? In America, we call it playing hooky. In England, we call it skiving. (Got another word for it?)
The most relaxed feeling I know is after going back and forth between a super-hot pool and super cold pool.
I used to use Gmail. But one day, as I typed my mother’s email address into the “To:” field, Google popped up a prompt asking if I also wanted to CC my uncle. That was so invasive and creepy that I deleted the account immediately and never used it again. I don’t want automated intelligence in my private email.
I don’t know why I have this rebellious nature. I tend to want to be the opposite of my surroundings.
Somewhere in our past, we were told it’s bad to daydream, because it meant doing nothing — staring out the window — instead of doing what we’re supposed to be doing. To admit we’re daydreaming felt like it needed an apology.
People often ask me how they can get over their fears. For example, they are scared to quit their job and start a business.
This is my advice to anyone writing something for the public — especially a talk on stage.
You couldn’t just roll down the street leaving huge piles of garbage everywhere you go, making life slower for everyone as they climb over your mountains of junk, just to get on with their life. You’d feel bad about it, right?
Someone asked me today why I don’t charge money for the things I do.
My “daily” blog was silent the last four days, because I took my kid on a spontaneous trip to another country. No phone. No computer. I gave him my full attention every day from when he woke me in the morning to when we fell asleep together at night. It was great.
Here’s an idea: Every month, pick something you hate or know nothing about, and get to know it well. Spend a few hours per week, for an entire month, just learning about that subject. Why?
Here’s an idea: Create a little school somewhere remote. School of what? School of mastery.
First, see my previous article about PostgreSQL functions at sivers.org/pg. That article gave tiny examples, but no finished working code.
I wanted to learn about the world, so I went travelling.
When someone becomes an expert at something, you know what else they become? Annoying.
If you’re in doubt about something that’s not in your life, try it. Things are so different in practice versus in theory. The only way to know is to experience it yourself.
I don’t usually talk about money, but a friend asked me what it was like to get rich, and he wanted to know specifics, so I told him my story.
Like everyone, I live in a little house with many doors and windows.
David grew up in St. Louis, Missouri, USA, with five brothers and sisters.
I was uncomfortable, unhappy, and restless. I didn’t want to meet new people, because I felt I was giving the wrong impression. Something wasn’t right. It took me months to figure out the real problem: My clothes don’t fit anymore!
One approach to music is to do whatever you want. Absolutely anything goes. But to me, that’s too free. It’s anti-inspiring because having infinite options is overwhelming.
In 1990, at the age of 20, I moved to New York City and got a job as the tape room guy for Warner/Chappell Music Publishing.
In 1991 I was 22 years old, and had moved to New York City to be a professional musician. I had a little home studio, and was doing some random gigs around town.
A musician had manufactured 10,000 copies of his CD in anticipation of 10,000 orders that were sure to come through that week.
Watch Elizabeth Gilbert’s great TED talk called “Your elusive creative genius”.
I’ve always used freedom as the compass to guide my decisions.