10 of the Best Podcasts and Books for Personal Growth Junkies

It’s probably no shocker that as a health + mindset coach I consume self-help content like it’s going out of style, which, for the record, it most definitely is not.

It amazes me, the incredible amount of content available to us. Here are my top 5 podcasts and top 5 books in the self-help, self-improvement genre.

It amazes me, the incredible amount of content available to us. Here are my top 5 podcasts and top 5 books in the Personal-development, self-improvement genre.

Books

You Are a Badass – Jen Sincero

It’s been many years since I read this book, but as one of the first true self-help books I read, it sticks with me as one of my favorites. This is a great book to start with because Jen herself was a self-help doubter. She tried out more programs and readings that you can imagine and boiled them down to the common truths she found helpful.

Like any good self-improvement book, she offers many opportunities to answer questions throughout the text for yourself. If you’re like me, you love a good homework assignment!

Daring Greatly – BrenĂ© Brown

This was the second book I read after my postpartum hiatus (if you’re wondering, Stay Sexy & Don’t Get Murdered was the first!). I could listen to BrenĂ© talk all day and her book is inspiring as much as it is informative.

What I love most about her work is that she is first and foremost a researcher. You forget that because she is so relatable and open about her own experience, then she hits you with facts that her research backs up.

The Universe Has Your Back – Gabrielle Bernstein

When I first discovered Gabby’s work it was like opening a bag of peanut butter stuffed pretzels. How did I enjoy my life without knowing about her?? To be honest, I struggled picking between this and her book Super Attractor, and maybe it’s because I read this one first, but I have never felt so connected to a text.

Gabby has a very strong spiritual side which may not be for everyone, but it opened the door to spiritual work for me that I am thankful for every day. Seriously, it is a gratitude of mine that she introduced me so powerfully into this space.

Maybe You Should Talk to Someone: A Therapist, Her Therapist, and Our Lives Revealed – Lori Gottlieb

I straight up devoured this book! More of a narrative, Lori gets transparent with her work as a therapist and about her own therapy experience. It is funny, like really funny, and also made me tear up.

Again, this isn’t the traditional self-help text. It will be up to you to apply what you read, there are no worksheets or journal prompts, but I promise it will create new thought patterns when you look at each situation with your own experience.

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up – Marie Kondo

I am not a fast reader (hi, I have a toddler!) and read this in 6 days while parenting during lockdown. Pick it up even if you’ve heard the statement, “If it doesn’t spark joy, get rid of it.” It’s so much more than that!

You will absolutely be inspired to declutter your crap and will absolutely be amazed with just how much crap you’re holding on to!

Podcasts

Armchair Expert

I doubt I’m the one introducing you to this show, but if you aren’t listening you are missing out! I like long form podcasts (as you’re going to see with this list) because the conversations flow and you get the really good nuggets deep into the discussion.

Episode to check out: Jewel

Shrink Chicks

This one is relatively new for me, but after the first episode I listened to (The Psychology of Cults) I immediately subscribed. I like the dynamic between the hosts, Jennifer and Emmalee, who are both marriage and family therapists, and their guests offer another perspective.

Whether you see a therapist or not, listening to this show is like a sneak peek of insights you’ll gain through therapy.

Episode to check out: Getting Unstuck

UNF*CK Your Brain

When I listened to Kara (the host) talk about a topic I had heard a lot about and still felt a jolt of energy, I knew I had found a podcast to add to my rotation. Kara is a Master Life Coach and dishes on all the typical self-help topics but in such a straight-forward-easy-to-digest manner that her episodes fly by. Most are around 20-minutes, although the episodes with guests are longer.

Episode to check out: Productivity, Self-Worth, and the Industrial Revolution

Dear Prudence

This is a listener-question-advice-column-style show hosted by Danny M. Lavery, unlike any of the podcasts I’ve listed. While not a typical self-improvement style show, I have learned a lot about myself from listening to not only advice and perspectives given by Danny and his guests, but my own reactions and opinions on the questions asked.

Episode to check out: Secret Smoking Spouse (honestly it doesn’t matter, each episode is entirely different depending on the questions so if you like how Danny addresses the questions, you’ll enjoy the show!)

Anna Faris is Unqualified

Part conversation, part interview, Anna has celebrities on each week for insightful, honest, and often funny discussions. I love how relatable it makes the biggest stars when they open up to her illuminating questions.

Episode to check out: Amy Schumer

Because of the amount of content I enjoy, it naturally became part of my unique coaching method. Throughout my work with my clients, I send them the perfect episode, book, post, account to follow, that addresses just what they are experiencing.

The Internet is overwhelming, and while you have unlimited content to support you, that’s what shuts people down. Having someone else do that legwork for you, narrow down the options and deliver them to you at the exact time you need them is a true lifeline.

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