21 Best Books on Gaining Confidence for 2024

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It’s time to stop being timid and afraid to speak up.  It’s time to step into your power and claim the confidence that’s yours for the taking.

You have big goals and dreams for your life, and to see those come to fruition, you need an abundance of confidence. 

The best way to shed self-doubt and step into confidence is to get some help from the experts.  That’s exactly what this list of the 21 best books on gaining confidence lets you do: you get great advice and practical tools from folks who know A LOT about building confidence.

There have been thousands (for real, I counted) of books written about how to gain or build more confidence .

The book list I’m sharing with you today features only the “best of the best.” Written by experts (from all fields and backgrounds), adored by readers around the globe, and backed by solid research, the selections introduced here are sure to inspire the confidence boost you want.

Whether you call it confidence, or something else, it’s all the same.

Whether you call it self-esteem, self-confidence, or believing in yourself, it all comes down to wanting to feel self-assured in all types of situations and circumstances.  

The good news: you can believe in yourself more fully and step into the life you deserve, regardless of your self-confidence level. I’ve scoured the works of top experts and inspiring authors to come up with this list of books on how to gain confidence and self-esteem and step into full awareness of your priceless self-worth.  I’m sure you’ll find the perfect read for you on this list!

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21 Best Books for Building Your Self-Confidence

There’s more than one way to build confidence, which is why I’m recommending different types of books  

I’ve deliberately offered a wide range of selections below, as I know not all options are right for all people.  It’s important to find the books with the messages that speak directly to you.

I  am confident that all of these authors offer invaluable advice that will help you increase your self-confidence and live a happier and more fulfilling life.  All you need to do  to make that happen is read these books and take the lessons to heart. 

Happy reading!

I included this bestseller by authors Dr. Lisa Orbe-Austin and Dr Richard Orbe-Austin because I love how the authors walk readers through the process of overcoming self-doubt. 

This confidence-boosting book is packed with journal prompts, simple exercises and fun activities that bring the learning home. No more “living as a doormat” or “struggling with invisibility” for you!

After reading Own Your Greatness, you’ll be better able to identify  your strengths, speak up for yourself more comfortably, and feel assured that you can go after and receive what you really want from your life. 

Playing Big is my top pick for confidence-building books because Tara doesn’t allow you to wallow in the surrounding fears and self-esteem issues that often surround a lack of confidence.  Instead, she reveals some of the nonsense you learned from others throughout your life that has given you a lowered sense of self-worth. I’m 100 percent confident you’ll find that many of the voices from your past led you off course. Thankfully you can choose a better way now.

Tara gently walks you through the steps to let the real you shine — the “you” that instinctively already knows that you have so much more to offer the world.  

Playing Big is about confidence and so much more. It’s about living your life your way and not letting yourself or anyone else dull your light ever again.

Get Playing Big now.  Read it, and apply the principles this treasure offers.  You won’t be sorry.

“Feedback doesn’t tell you about yourself. It tells you about the person giving the feedback. In other words, if someone says your work is gorgeous, that just tells you about *their* taste. If you put out a new product and it doesn’t sell at all, that tells you something about what your audience does and doesn’t want. When we look at praise and criticism as information about the people giving it, we tend to get really curious about the feedback, rather than dejected or defensive.” ― Tara Mohr, Playing Big: Find Your Voice, Your Mission, Your Message

This best-selling book from Harvard Professor Amy Cuddy is a must-have for anyone who wants to step into their full confidence so they can overcome the big challenges they are up against. 

Amy walks you through what it takes to recognize and step into your personal power. She gives you tools that will help you ditch the habit of comparing yourself to others and worrying about what others think of you. You can step into your power moment by moment;  Amy Cuddy will teach you how.

"The way you carry yourself is a source of personal power—the kind of power that is the key to presence. It’s the key that allows you to unlock yourself—your abilities, your creativity, your courage, and even your generosity. It doesn’t give you skills or talents you don’t have; it helps you to share the ones you do have.” - Amy Cuddy

If you want to become more confident, then you have to start having a higher opinion of yourself. Jen Sincero certainly hit a home-run when she titled her book You Are a Badass — many people want to feel this way about themselves, but sadly, many of us do not.

If you’re ready to lead your life as a badass instead of full of self-doubt and low confidence, then get yourself a copy of You Are a Badass It’s fun and informative.  It also contains so many deep truths that it will blow your mind with how much it resonates with you and your life.

“You are perfect. To think anything less is as pointless as a river thinking that it’s got too many curves or that it moves too slowly or that its rapids are too rapid. ...You’re on a journey with no defined beginning, middle, or end. There are no wrong twists and turns. There is just being. And your job is to be as you as you can be. ... Do not deny the world its one and only chance to bask in your brilliance.” - Jen Sincero

Feeling stuck?  Unable or incapable of going after something you want because you’re scared you don’t have the ability to make your dream goals come true?  Living in fear is no way to live! Then you need to spend some time with Scott Alan.  In this popular book, you’ll learn the ins and outs of building your confidence by taking on things you’re scared to do.  

According to author Andrew Leedham, the number of people who go through life not feeling good about who they are is SKY-HIGH!   Yikes!

You deserve to feel good about yourself, comfortable in your own skin, and confident in your abilities and inherent self-worth.  

In this extensive read (it’s a big book!), Leedham discusses how he went from the lowest point of his life to feeling and acting 100% unstoppable. Lessons from his journey can help you feel unstoppable, too!

I’ve wrestled with self-doubt much of my life, and as I’ve written about on Believe and Create, that sense of self-doubt and low-confidence can take a toll on a person.  In the Confidence Gap, Russ Harris teaches us that instead of trying to overcome fears it’s far better to create a different relationship with them so we can have the confidence to live the life we are imagining. It’s an insightful read that certainly opened my eyes.

“The actions of confidence come first; the feelings of confidence come later. Genuine confidence is not the absence of fear; it is a transformed relationship with fear. Negative thoughts are normal. Don’t fight them; defuse them. Self-acceptance trumps self-esteem.” - Russ Harris

If you want to build your confidence, you need to move beyond the beliefs and habits that are holding you back.  While some “best books on confidence lists” might not think to add The 5 Second Rule to their list, I definitely think that reading it will build your confidence. That’s because confidence often comes from the things we say to ourselves and the behaviors we allow to persist, even though they’re causing us harm.

If you’ve never heard for Mel Robbins or the 5 Second Rule, take a glance at this video below.  Then, go buy the book— it’s a game-changer!

This confidence-building book is a classic that holds up.  Oh boy, does it hold up! If you’ve never read it, add it to your reading list now.  Susan Jeffers teaches you how to stare down the fears that leave you feeling less than confident once and for all.

“The concepts and tools you about to learn [in Face the Fear and Do it Anyway] are meant to be used for a lifetime. Learn them well. And every time a new challenge comes into your life, you need only reach into your ‘toolbox’ and move yourself from the weakest to the strongest part of who you are. As you do, you will be absolutely amazed at the incredible power you hold inside. - Susan Jeffers

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if you could create confidence in any situation?  Author Heather Monahan helps you build your confidence — or rebuild it if you’re dealing with a painful divorce, breakup, unemployment, or any one of a myriad of life’s challenges that tend to knock us down.

What I like most about the Confidence Creator is how Heather’s personal stories bring the lessons to life. The book is insightful, heartwarming, and helpful all at the same time.

“In every moment we are either building our confidence or chipping away at it. The choice is yours.” -Heather Monahan

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you probably already know who Brené Brown is.  But does the hype about her amazing book Daring Greatly live up to the reality?  In my opinion, yes it does.

No one has a pill or a magic wand that will make you more confident.  Sorry, these just don’t exist. The secret to building your confidence one moment as a time is learning when and where to be vulnerable, and how to do it with a high sense of self intact.  That’s exactly what you’ll learn when you read this book.  

By the way, for a quick refresher of just how amazing  Brené Brown, which this YouTube video.

Want to have a better career?  More success?  Don’t want to work for years to make this happen?  Then you’ll want to read Step Up.  This book is devoted to things you can do to boost your confidence and success in your career, so it has a narrower focus than other books on this list.  

What I like most about Step Up is how practical it is.  It offers simple yet career-elevating advice and “career workouts” that can be done in mere minutes a day. If you struggle with confidence at work, this book is for you.

“Underqualified and underprepared men don’t think twice about leaning in. Overqualified and overprepared, too many women still hold back. And the confidence gap is an additional lens through which to consider why it is women don’t lean in. Even when we are prepared to tolerate the personal disruption that comes with aiming high, even when we have plenty of ambition, we fundamentally doubt ourselves.” - Katty Kay

The simple act of changing your self-talk can have a tremendous impact on boosting your confidence.  While the act simple, releasing long-held self-limiting beliefs isn’t always that easy.

In this book from Shad Helmstetter coaches you through the process of identifying which self-talk is harming you, how to identify it when it’s happening, and how to change it into self-talk that increases your confidence and overall happiness.  

You’ll learn all about the five levels of self-talk so you can take control of your life and start feeling bolder and better about yourself and your life every day.

“[In telling ourselves we’re not confident] we are trying to force the brain to do something that it has not been programmed to do. The brain simply believes what you tell it the most. And what you tell it about you it will create. It has no choice.” - Shad Helmstetter

In her widely popular book, Live Fearless, author Sadie Robertson takes you on an enlightening journey away from fear and uncertainty and into a life full of passion and purpose.  This Christian-based book is ideal for anyone who is struggling with low confidence or as a gift for students and others in jeopardy of developing or   living with a low sense of self-worth.   

How much stress do you think you have low or wavering confidence brings into your life?  The truth is, it brings a lot of stress and anxiety to most of us.  Worse, it keeps us from living the lives we dream of living.  In this book from positive psychology expert Louisa Jewell, you’ll learn proven formulas for wiring your brain for the kind of confidence that will help you build a life you truly love.  

“This book [Wire Your Brain for Confidence] is about building the kind of confidence that leaves you unwavering in your belief in yourself and the life you want to live … It’s about finding that peaceful calm and letting go of the anxiety of stress.” - Louisa Jewell

The Little Book of Confidence is part of Susan’s Jeffers’ “Little Books” series. While this book is small in size, it’s packed with simple wisdom and insights that will inspire you to live more confidently every single day.  And since Susan Jeffers is widely considered one of the top authorities on the subject of confidence, it’s a must-have book for your collection.

“Drown out the chatterbox! It’s so simple. To quiet the Chatterbox, commit to replacing it with the voice of the Higher Self which always tells you that you are good enough and pulls you up into the best of who you are.” -Susan Jeffers

Is there a teen in your life (or are you a teen) who needs a confidence boost?  Wake up to your unstoppable self and learn to live comfortably in authenticity;   author Derek T. Freeman will show you the way.  You’ll learn how to stop comparing yourself to others, live beyond labels, and step into your personal power.  

John Taylor developed the You Need to Trust Yourself workbook to help you develop self confidence.  You won’t merely read about the habits and tools that will boost your sense of self-worth and esteem, you’ll work through practical exercises that will help you become more confident day by day.   So if you’re suffering from low self confidence, you definitely might want to check out this resource.  

Written in her legendary bold and no-BS style, author Lisa Bilyeu’s book,  Radical Confidence is a must-read for anyone with big dreams who is held back by fear and low confidence. 

This book is part memoir, part how-to, part inspirational, and overall just a fun and inspiring ride.  That’s why it made my list of must-read books about confidence.  

You probably know Shonda Rhimes as a television producer and screenwriter.  Perhaps she is best known for her hit series Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal and the Netflix dramas Bridgerton and Queen Charlotte. 

By all accounts, Shonda is wildly successful and is considered to be among the most influential people in her industry. 

But Shonda’s story didn’t always look the way her life looks now.  In her memoir, Year of Yes, she talks about how she stepped into her power and overcame significant odds (and even low self-confidence) to become the confident success she is today.

One more thing about her you might not know:   Shonda’s an introvert.  Can you relate?  She even avoided public appearances for years because she felt so uncomfortable talking to the media and others about her incredible work and career.  But at one point, she just decided enough was enough, and that’s when the Year of Yes was born — she lived it and then wrote about it so we could all benefit from her incredible advice.  

Year of Yes is as enlightening as it is entertaining to read.  If you haven’t read it yet, what are you waiting for?

Those who suffer from low self-confidence often cling to self-limiting beliefs and self-sabotaging behaviors.  Fear of doing the wrong thing or being judged holds us back. You may think the the mountains you’re facing are holding you back, but author Brianna Weist explains that The Mountain Is You and in her beautiful way explains how you shed self-doubt, overthinking and negative self-talk to elevate your life. You belong on the mountaintop;  not carrying it on your shoulders.  

“The greatest act of self-love is to no longer accept a life you are unhappy with.” - Brianna Wiest

You're not alone: low self-esteem and confidence affects a lot of people

If you wish you could be more confident, take heart; you’re not alone.  According to some reports, 50% or more of us suffer from low self-confidence at some point in our lives.

One Harvard study found that the vast majority of women they interviewed raised confidence “as a central factor obstructing their own and other women’s career progression” [Source: Harvard Business Review]

That’s why I’ve created this list of the 11 best books on confidence  … I KNOW people need the help!

You may struggle with confidence in some specific parts of your life, or it could be more widespread

For some, the struggle is ongoing. Lack of confidence can impact your career, your relationships, how much money you earn, and your life happiness.  Self-confidence is so important that I decided to compile a list of my favorite 11 books on confidence.  

The books on this list are the very best books for building confidence and ditching self-doubt that I’ve ever read.  And, while I personally recommend each book on this list, I didn’t just assemble this collection without checking into what others are saying.  

These books are also highly rated by thousands of others.  In fact, all together, these books have helped more than a million people build their confidence, and I’m certain they can do the same for you, too.

Do you know anyone else who could benefit from this list of the best books on gaining confidence? Then please share this post on social media. Thanks!

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