Reading has been a practice for all successful people from time immemorial. People read for various reasons and their purpose is related to the output that they desire to achieve from that read. The objective generally is not only to learn but also to find and apply ideas to their own situations. There are also bigger reasons which can be connected to analyzing the information being read in several books and then taking those ideas to a bigger level.
Reading has taken shape over the years from the hard printed book to an audiobook platform. Now, there’s a choice to listen to the whole book at the speed that one desires. I subscribe to Audible and I find it very easy to listen to a book of my choice any time I want and also in any location I desire in addition to reading a printed book as and when possible.
Before we delve into the books which can be instrumental in the journey of a student, let me answer some basics which can be useful for a student to know the relevance of embarking on this journey –
Why should a student read the book?
While a student continues to study a lot of textbooks and subjects basis interest, it is equally important to identify and read books that encourage a student to live a happier, richer, and more meaningful life leading to a broader positive mindset.
What is a positive mindset?
Let us start with what is a Mindset?
The perception of our mind that controls our attitude and is responsible for determining success or failure. Thus, an individual’s usual attitude or mental state can be defined as a Mindset.
A positive Mindset, therefore, is an attitude and a choice that one makes in whatever is happening in one’s life. The best aspect of positivity is that it doesn’t just affect one area of your life. It starts to impact every possible area because you become a lot more aware and that’s the power of such books being read in the foundational years of a student’s career.
Positive Thinking is not just a theoretical approach but a way of life for all who have any desire to succeed in their life.
William James has very aptly said – “If you can change your mind, you can change your life.”
Here is the list of the recommended 10 books and they are not necessarily in the order in which they appear:
1 The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale
This insightful and uplifting book demonstrates the power of faith in action. It assists people to realize that their dreams lie within the ability to practice full faith in everyday actions.
- Expect the best and get it
- Believe in yourself and in everything you do
- Develop the power to reach your goals
- Break the worry habit and achieve a relaxed life
- Improve your personal and professional relationships
- Assume control over your circumstances
- Be kind to yourself
- Methods that describes how to live a more productive, and more rewarding life
- Assists in mastering the problems of everyday living:
- How to eliminate self-doubt
- Exercises that you can do every day to be happy
- How to climb above problems to visualize solutions
- How to free yourself from worry, stress, and resentment
With the practical techniques outlined in this book, you can energize your life and give yourself the initiative needed to carry out your ambitions and hopes.
It can help you to take charge of your life and create a positive change. This book easily describes how to achieve an optimistic attitude through positive conscious thought, using affirmations or visualizations.
2 How to Gain a Positive Mindset: The Perfect Guide to Having and Keeping a Positive Mindset for Students. Control and Choose Your Thoughts to Build New Habits and Empower Learning by Arianna Peterson
One beacon of light that has gained popularity and traction among the masses is the idea of positive thinking.
- A perspective on positive thinking, which is grounded in diverse theories covering:
- Everything from how we think
- How we make judgments on the world around us
- How we can change our ways of thinking.
Through a creative approach, the books find ways to quantify and qualify some important concepts in the field of positive thinking.
Complex information is discussed in a way that is appealing to both university students and anyone with an interest in learning how to become a positive thinker and cultivate a positive mindset.
Through analogies, diagrams, pop culture references, and graphic representations, the books present intangible concepts such as thinking about thinking, how thoughts are formed, how these concepts can be changed, and how we make decisions accessible to the student of positive thinking.
Deciding on what is important and what is not, what can be reduced to a grouping or concept, and thinking in terms of concepts is not always a conscious process. It’s not like your brain sends you a checklist at the beginning of each day. However, without you knowing it, your brain has already decided on what your preferences are and ticked off the blocks for you.
This book will make people aware of the preferences we have folded into our psychology while offering insights into how we can change our thoughts, our life perspectives, and find a better and more constructive way to live.
With the rampant increase in mental strain in the workplace, study stress for the youth, and familial resistance at home, it has become exceedingly necessary to look for alternatives to medication and more aggressive therapies.
Positive thinking and creating your positive mindset offer just that: a solution to those who are willing to explore themselves and create a lasting framework within which to see, function in, and enrich the world, both for ourselves and others.
- A perspective on positive thinking, which is grounded in diverse theories covering:
3 The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
The wisdom that The Alchemist shares are simple yet profound.
The story transfers the quest for treasure into a spiritual journey to uncover the treasures found within.
This book brings a realization of the value contained in our hearts, minds, and dreams.
I don’t live in either my past or my future. I’m interested only in the present. If you can always concentrate on the present, you’ll be a happy man. Life will be a party for you (a grand festival) because life is the moment we’re living now.
The book covers aspects that are connected to finding one’s own destiny, rising above failure, and the unity of the universe.
- No matter what he does, every person on earth plays a central role in the history of the world. And normally he doesn’t know it.
- It’s the possibility of having a dream come true that makes life interesting.
- And, when you can’t go back, you have to worry only about the best way of moving forward.
- People are capable, at any time in their lives, of doing what they dream of.
- One is loved because one is loved. No reason is needed for loving.
- The secret of life, though, is to fall seven times and to get up eight times.
- Every blessing ignored becomes a curse.
- Everyone on earth has a treasure that awaits him.
- The simple things are also the most extraordinary things, and only the wise can see them.
- Positive thinking is a skill that you can learn.
4 Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill
In the story, Napoleon dedicated 20 years of his life to studying and interviewing 500 of the most successful people at the time. Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, and Andrew Carnegie were all subjects of Napoleon’s diligent research.
This book has had a tremendous influence on more than 100 million people across the globe and it also had an invaluable impact on the whole field of personal development and positive thinking.
It contains knowledge and wisdom from 1937 that can still be applied in today’s highly evolving digital age.
This book about positivity and success will teach you how to achieve your dreams, as well as the techniques that could bring you lasting success.
- The book is about making more money, but the author says that his philosophy can help people succeed in any line of work, and become anything they can imagine.
- It has helped and inspired many to achieve success in their lives.
- It asserts that desire, faith, and persistence can propel one to great heights if one can suppress negative thoughts and focus on long-term goals.
- The author speaks in his book about desire, faith, auto-suggestion, imagination, the power of the mastermind, and other topics.
- The author also urged the selection of a “definite chief aim” in life.
5 As a Man Thinketh by James Allen
The logic of the book, As a Man Thinketh by James Allen, follows the simple yet profound premise that your thoughts create your life. We truly become what we think we are. Negative thoughts affect us more than we know.
If you have practiced negative thinking, you will create a life full of negative circumstances. On the contrary, when we practice positive thinking, ‘the entire world softens towards us, and is ready to help us.’
We either master our thoughts and create the life we badly want or get stuck in the endless loop of negative thoughts and pessimism.
- Follows the premise that thoughts can shape one’s life. If you think negatively, you will create a life full of negative circumstances, but if you mainly think of positive thoughts, you will attract positive circumstances.
- In a manner, it follows the law of attraction/manifestation. Therefore, we attract whatever it is that we are thinking i.e., whether it be love or fear-based, through our subconscious delivery system that serves as a catalyst for physical manifestation.
- It will teach you to take control of your destiny and transform your life for the better.
- We attract whatever it is that we think about.
- It tells us that the choice is ours alone.
- Positive thinking = happy life.
The outer conditions of a person’s life will always be found to be harmoniously related to his inner state… Men do not attract that which they want, but that which they are.
6 How to Stop Worrying and Start Living by Dale Carnegie
The author teaches that there is a thin line between worrying responsibly and worrying excessively:
- Take every day when it comes (“take care of today; tomorrow, it’s taking care of itself“)
- How to solve worry situations
- The negative consequences of worrying excessively
- Think positively, analyze, and find simple solutions to complicated worries
- Fight battles leading with the truth, not erroneous ideas (imaginary problems)
- Words that can change your life for the better
- It can help you break down worries and stress, and understand why they are unhealthy for your mind and your body.
- Free your mind of vanity and make room for positive relationships
- Celebrate your uniqueness, accept and love yourself as you are
The author teaches how to solve worry situations and about the negative consequences of worrying. He writes about how words can change your life for the better and how to free the mind. He also writes about celebrating your uniqueness, and about accepting and loving yourself as you are.
7 Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Carol S. Dweck
This book can help you to overcome a defeatist attitude and change your mindset on the positive.
One may think that positive thinking can be learned fast and easy. However, a defeatist attitude can overturn all your learning at the first hurdle you encounter.
As an example, let’s say someone learns to notice (mainly) what’s good about themselves and put the unsatisfying things under the umbrella “not yet!” Is that all it takes to have a positive thinking mind?
Many people are holding on to a defeatist attitude as if that’s protecting them from the grief and pain of failure. Yet, surrendering and submitting to “I can’t do more” it’s hindering your progress. It makes you feel more pessimistic by the day, never seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.
No matter what your ability is, an effort is what ignites that ability and turns it into an accomplishment!
8 Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl
Do you know anyone that doesn’t think about “what’s my purpose in life“?
Some of us are searching for that purpose endlessly and never feel satisfied with what we find.
- Discover in this book how you can find your purpose:
- A purpose that gives meaning to your life
- A purpose that helps you live your life to the fullest
- A purpose that allows you to see yourself (and most things) in a positive light.
This book can empower you towards the path to positivity.
This book goes through the horrific struggle of Viktor Frankl who survived holocaust concentration camps.
The only thing that kept him going was his idea that everything, even the worst of human suffering, had to have meaning. If you’re struggling through anything in your life, I guarantee the words of Viktor will give you the courage to press on and find happiness.
- Discover in this book how you can find your purpose:
9 The Magic of Believing by Claude M Bristol
Do you desire to become the master of your thoughts and self-beliefs?
- How to tap a vast reservoir of mental power that can direct you to the things you want
- Unhappy people are unhappy, first and foremost, because they allow others to live rent-free in their thoughts dictating how they feel and behave.
- Discover in this book how to build your positive self-belief.
- How to use the law of suggestion
- How to apply the power of your imagination to find ways to overcome obstacles
- How to turn thoughts into achievements
Many people tell you "just believe in yourself, and you can do it" but not too many understand what that (actually) means or how to put it into practice.
Do you believe in yourself? Do you have the firm belief you can face no matter what life puts in front of you? How often do you count what’s amazing about you?
Positive thinking is directly linked to self-belief. Believing in yourself makes almost everything else rosy and easy. Is it not?
Listen, one of the primary directives of your unconscious mind is never to allow you to be a liar. Because of that fact, what you believe about yourself becomes a reality. If you say you can, your unconscious mind does its best to prove you right.
10 Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff and It’s All Small Stuff: Simple Ways to Keep the Little Things from Taking Over Your Life (Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff Series) by Richard Carlson
A book that is perfect for anyone who has a busy schedule and is seeking positive insight on life.
“What tomorrow brings?” is one question that most of us have in our minds. However, for some people, that is not a simple question but a torture device.
Yes, you can predict many things; you can avoid many disasters; you can, sometimes, draw positive solutions out of worrying. Yet, living ‘comfortably numb’ into the state of surrendering to your worries it’s only deepening your frustration and fear.
- How you can pay less attention to trivial things and bring peace and harmony in(to) your mind.
- Can you think positively staying with your eyes glued to a ticking bomb?… maybe, if you’re overly optimistic…
- Life is full of explosions. Some you can prevent, some not. But, at the end of the day, what counts the most for your happiness and well-being is where you direct your thoughts, what you focus on.
- The small things we worry about every day may not seem like a big deal, but they wear us down slowly and stop us from living up to our full potential. Learn how to get rid of those worries and negative thoughts and live a happier life.
- It will teach you how to put things into perspective by making small daily changes, it’s filled with advice such as:
- choose your battles wisely
- remind yourself that when you die, your inbox won’t be empty
- think of your problems as potential teachers
This book is definitely one to read if you wish to take charge of your life and think more positively.
11 Concluding Thoughts!
Having mentioned the list of Must-Read books, I would like to emphasize that a lot of times, priority to finish even 1 Book can take months and years and hence in the interest of having exposure...I would like to share an easier approach to start the process instead of waiting for that PICTURE PERFECT moment of book completion...
...What is important to keep in mind while a student is going through the journey of reading any book is the following:
- One should always read the important chapters and sections in the book.
- Practice the Pareto’s Principle or 80/20 Rule.
- Read 20 percent of the book allows you to understand 80 percent of the text.
- Take notes of the important information as one is reading each book.
- Write the same in your own words for it to be used later.
- Identify the big issues the author is writing about.
- Pick out the big ideas in each book.
- Write down why those ideas are important for YOU?
The above in no way compromises the essence of spending more time on the books. It is about the discipline of accomplishing it!
Do share your thoughts and viewpoints along with your experience of having read any of these books or your future commitment to read one...Cheers!