My Top 10 Recommended Books for 2016

There are some books that are insightful, some that are entertaining and a few that change the way you live. These ten books are works that have had that rock-your-world effect on me and actually altered how I saw the world or responded to it.

If you haven't read these books, I highly recommend them. I won't go as far as to say they'll change your life because, as with many things, the stage of life you're in and what you're dealing with can make a big difference on how something will impact you. But these are books that have shaped who I am and I'm sure you'll get something beautiful out of them no matter what.

You can read one a month and still have two months to read whatever else your heart desires during 2016. Though each book stands on its own merit, I listed them in the following order purposefully. Some are old, some are new, some I borrowed, three are blue. Enjoy!

A Million Miles in a Thousand Years by Donald Miller

Don, known for his best-seller, Blue Like Jazz (another I highly recommend) wrote this lesser-known book shortly after BLJ was made into a movie. In it, he asks the question, "what makes a great story?" and "how can we use those answers to live a great story ourselves?"

Love Does by Bob Goff

Bob does many things extraordinarily well. One such thing is loving on people. He has this unnatural knack for loving people in beautiful ways and adding a little whimsical to the mundanity of life. This book is full of stories that will inspire you to take a little time out of your day to add a whole lot of love to the world.

Boundaries by Dr. Henry Cloud & Dr. John Townsend

Many of us live lives that are plagued by people overstepping their boundaries and most of the time, we don't even realize it. Doctors Cloud and Townsend give you a roadmap for relationships and show you how guilt trips, peer pressure, false authority, logical fallacies and more can be put to the curb for good. This is a crucial read for a peaceful life.

How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie

An oldie but a goodie, Carnegie drills down into the classic art of winning friends and influencing people. No, it's not a book on how to be a pickup artist, nor a book on conning people into doing you a favor. It's a book about relationships, service and love.

Switch by Chip Heath & Dan Heath

Switch unlocks the secrets of influence, showing you exactly how and why decisions are made. Here's a hint: it's not on a whim. With vibrant stories and insightful illustrations, they bring a sense of clarity to the way in which our mind makes decisions.

The Happiness of Pursuit by Chris Guillebeau

Chris, the youngest person to have visited every country in the world, chronicles the joy he found in the pursuit of his quest. Interspersed among the chapters, he also tells the stories of friends he's made around the world and the fulfillment they've found in each of their quests.

Start with Why by Simon Sinek

Everyone knows what they do. Many people know how they do it. But few know why they do it. And "why" happens to be the key to success. Simon Sinek, renown business and leadership coach and author, takes us into the world of "why" and shows us its impact on discovering purpose, unlocking passion and changing the world.

Creativity Inc. by Ed Catmull

Ed, President of both Pixar Animation Studios and Walt Disney Animation Studios, brings his special insight to the world of creativity through the lens of two of the greatest storytelling empires the world has ever known.

The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferriss

This book has the most underlines and dog-ears per page of any other book I own except for the Bible. Nearly every page is packed with specific, actionable advice for creating the life you want to live by building the career that let's you live it.

Never Eat Alone by Keith Farrazzi

Never Eat Alone gives you the tools and playbooks you need to build and sustain your network of movers and shakers. It doesn't have to be scary or intimidating. In fact, it has the potential to be incredibly fulfilling and rewarding.

Make it through these ten books in 2016 and I guarantee you that things will start to happen. Not because the books are magical, but because you'll finally understand what you are meant to do and how to go about doing it.

May you have a very happy new year!