If you’re struggling with self-confidence, there’s no reason to not turn to books on confidence.
All the successful people in the world you know read books and do it because books are perhaps the most tried-and-true method of learning something they don’t know much about.
So if we all agree that the best books are key to learning new things, why wouldn’t you want to read books on confidence if you’re struggling with self-esteem, charisma, self-actualization, etc. …?
All of those qualities are part of the same package and the best books on confidence can help you learn strategies to become the confident man you want to be.
That’s why we rounded up a few of our favorite books on confidence below. They all come at the issue of confidence from different directions but they all ultimately provide tools to help you develop relevant self-awareness, unlearn toxic thought patterns and not just feel confident but actually be confident.
1. The Charisma Myth
Confidence and charisma are two birds of a feather and both can be learned with the right tips and practice. The Charisma Myth: How Anyone Can Master the Art and Science of Personal Magnetism by Olivia Fox Cabane provides these exact tools, honed through years of teaching at top universities, you need to develop your confidence.
What readers said: “Totally loved this book … It is very easy to read, full of storytelling, research materials and practical exercises … I’ve started implementing various practical tips given in the book and [it works] wonders. Highly recommend to those who feel lost, unsatisfied with their relationships and don’t know how to influence others and get what they want.”
The Charisma Myth: How Anyone Can Master the Art and Science of Personal Magnetism
2. Unstoppable Self Confidence
According to Andrew Leedham, the author of Unstoppable Self Confidence: How to Create the Indestructible, Natural Confidence of the 1% Who Achieve Their Goals, Create Success on Demand and Live Life on Their Terms confidence isn’t about learning new things so much as it is about unlearning old things.
And perhaps unlike many self-confidence authors, Leedham knows from experience. After experiencing his own rock-bottom moment, he came to learn what he needed to do to change his life, and the knowledge and strategies he developed form the foundation of the book.
What readers said: “This is not just any ordinary self development book. If you are truly seeking to improve your self confidence [then] I highly recommend this read. Andrew has included step by step instructions on how to change your mindset. Learning how to quiet your ego is no easy task but after reading this book I have absolutely more power and skills to live a more [productive] life on my terms. I am excited to incorporate my new found abilities and self confidence into all aspects of my life.”
Unstoppable Self Confidence: How to Create the Indestructible, Natural Confidence of the 1% Who Achieve Their Goals, Create Success on Demand and Live Life on Their Terms
3. Unfu*k Yourself
Unfu*k Yourself: Get Out of Your Head and into Your Life isn’t so much a confidence manual as it is a life manual. But it tackles the role that confidence and hesitation play in living your best life and can help you move past your doubts about yourself. It does that through seven mantras that, even without the book, may already begin to reframe how you think about life and confidence: I am willing, I am wired to win, I got this, I embrace the uncertainty, I am not my thoughts; I am what I do, I am relentless, I expect nothing and accept everything.
Remember: You got this, now it’s time to unfu*k yourself.
What readers said: “Gary John Bishop tells it like it is. He also tells you how to get past all the BS in your head and move forward. One of the best self-help books I’ve read. There aren’t a lot of rules and a bazillion steps to follow like many authors try to push on you. Bishop inspires while he guides. Perfect for anyone looking for motivation and willing to open themselves up and break free of their crippling, self-imposed limitations.”
Unfu*k Yourself: Get Out of Your Head and into Your Life
4. The Confidence Code
If you’re looking for a bit more science and research behind confidence, you might consider The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance — What Women Should Know by Katty Kay and Claire Shipman.
Yes, it’s written by women for women, but this book nonetheless has scientifically backed advice for any person looking for techniques to improve their confidence. Just think of it this way: If these tips are meant to work for women — who the book argues are conditioned to be less confident than men — there’s no reason they couldn’t work for men too.
What readers said: “The book does a good job of reaffirming we already know which [is] risk plus action equals confidence.” “I really liked this book. It helped me understand the meaning [of] confidence and how important confidence is.” “Anyone looking for more information on confidence should give this a good read.”
The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance — What Women Should Know
5. The Six Pillars of Self-Esteem
An oldie but goodie, Nathaniel Branden’s The Six Pillars of Self-Esteem: The Definitive Work on Self-Esteem by the Leading Pioneer in the Field is an essential self-confidence text. Branden was a psychotherapist who literally specialized in self-esteem and his key insight was that self-esteem is a fundamental psychological need that relies as much on internal habits as much as external validation. Read this book to figure out the six crucial aspects of self-esteem, understand how they apply in five important life domains and, most importantly, to actually implement the knowledge to feel a genuine sense of self-esteem.
What readers said: “This book has been extremely helpful for me to understand the full depth of fear and lack of self efficacy I have. It has truly been a life changer and I would highly recommend to others on their journey.”
The Six Pillars of Self-Esteem: The Definitive Work on Self-Esteem by the Leading Pioneer in the Field
6. The Mountain Is You
If you feel like your life consists of nothing but mountains to climb, Brianna Wiest has a book for you: The Mountain Is You: Transforming Self-Sabotage Into Self-Mastery. This book on confidence will effectively coach you to identify your habits that keep you from making the changes you want and use that new self-awareness to overcome them. Though not specifically geared toward confidence and charisma, we’d be willing to bet this book will still help you identify behaviors that are stopping you from being your most confident self.
What readers said: “I gave this book 5 stars because it hit on all the topics I believe we all struggle with being human. Brianna’s thoughts and ideas are coherent and intelligent but also straightforward and accessible. The book reminded me why I do a little something every day to work on myself and my mental well-being. Thoroughly enjoyed the read.”
The Mountain Is You: Transforming Self-Sabotage Into Self-Mastery
7. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck
Mark Manson’s The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life may be the one book on confidence on this list you’ve definitely heard of. It’s popular because it reads like the unvarnished truth. Life is pretty much messed up, Manson argues, and the key to happiness, goal achievement or even confidence is to recognize that and learn to deal with it. Once you begin to learn to accept your fears and limitations, only then can you overcome them. Buy this book if you’re looking to better yourself and appreciate millennial-friendly straight talk.
What readers said: “This self-help book is the best by far. It basically slaps you in the face to tell you that you always have the option to make yourself happy, but also that you need to be responsible for your own actions. It gives you tips and tricks to get over the pressure that others put on you. This book is absolutely worth [your] time. I promise you will not regret it.”
The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life
8. 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos
Despite the legitimate controversy surrounding Jordan Peterson, a professor of psychology at the University of Toronto, his book on confidence, 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos, has helped thousands of men become the men they wish to be.
Peterson suggests that suffering is innate to existence but that we all have a choice in how to respond to it. As you might guess, Peterson offers 12 rules to apply to your life to help you overcome that suffering and give you structure that ultimately leads to confidence, accomplishment and true self-satisfaction.
It can be a bit dense and slow at times, but by the time you get to each rule, you’ll understand exactly why it’s a valuable way to live your life.
What readers said: “This book has an unmeasurable significance to me. It rekindled my interest in living, made me aware of my own faults and virtues. My nihilism has come to a halt, and I could proudly say that I’m on my way to finding my purpose in life, whatever it might be.” “12 Rules for Life is a fantastic start to help start living to your potential. This is not a political ideology like some would have you believe. Personal responsibility is not left or right. This book has affected my life in a variety of ways … It helped take me from being quite lazy and honestly very short sighted to productive and happy.”