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10 Uplifting Books to Read in 2020

Posted by Mekenna Malan on

We made a list of our 10 favorite inspiring books to uplift you in 2020! From self-help to creative inspiration and digital detoxing, these books will guide you into your best year yet. Another year, another 365 days to inspire, uplift, and grow - so get reading!

1. Rising Strong by Brené Brown

Read if you liked: The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin

"It is the rise from falling that social scientist Brené Brown takes as her subject in Rising Strong. As a grounded theory researcher, Brown has listened as a range of people shared their stories of being brave, falling, and getting back up. She asked herself, What do these people with strong and loving relationships, leaders nurturing creativity, artists pushing innovation, and clergy walking with people through faith and mystery have in common? The answer was clear: They recognize the power of emotion and they’re not afraid to lean in to discomfort."

Uplifting Books to Read in 2020

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2. Girl, Stop Apologizing by Rachel Hollis

Read if you liked: Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis

"Rachel Hollis has seen it too often: women not living into their full potential. They feel a tugging on their hearts for something more, but they’re afraid of embarrassment, of falling short of perfection, of not being enough. In Girl, Stop Apologizing, Rachel Hollis sounds a wake-up call. With a challenge to women everywhere to stop talking themselves out of their dreams, Hollis identifies the excuses to let go of, the behaviors to adopt, and the skills to acquire on the path to growth, confidence, and believing in yourself."

Uplifting Books to Read in 2020

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3. To Shake the Sleeping Self: A Quest For Life With No Regret by Jedidiah Jenkins

Read if you liked: Wild by Cheryl Strayed

"On the eve of turning thirty, terrified of being funneled into a life he didn’t choose, Jedidiah Jenkins quit his dream job and spent sixteen months cycling from Oregon to Patagonia. He chronicled the trip on Instagram, where his photos and reflections drew hundreds of thousands of followers, all gathered around the question: What makes a life worth living? A soul-stirring read for the wanderer in each of us, To Shake the Sleeping Self is an unforgettable reflection on adventure, identity, and a life lived without regret."

Uplifting Books to Read in 2020

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4. Start Where You Are: A Guide to Compassionate Living by Pema Chödrön

Read if you liked: Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur

"We all want to be fearless, joyful, and fully alive. And we all know that it’s not so easy. We’re bombarded every day with false promises of ways to make our lives better—buy this, go here, eat this, don’t do that; the list goes on and on. But Pema Chödrön shows that, until we get to the heart of who we are and really make friends with ourselves, everything we do will always be superficial. Here she offers down-to-earth guidance on how we can go beyond the fleeting attempts to “fix” our pain and, instead, to take our lives as they are as the only path to achieve what we all yearn for most deeply—to embrace rather than deny the difficulties of our lives."

Uplifting Books to Read in 2020

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5. Dear Ijeawele, or A Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Read if you liked: Men Explain Things to Me by Rebecca Solnit

"A few years ago, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie received a letter from a childhood friend, a new mother who wanted to know how to raise her baby girl to be a feminist. Dear Ijeawele is Adichie’s letter of response: fifteen invaluable suggestions—direct, wryly funny, and perceptive—for how to empower a daughter to become a strong, independent woman. Filled with compassionate guidance and advice, it gets right to the heart of sexual politics in the twenty-first century, and starts a new and urgently needed conversation about what it really means to be a woman today."

Uplifting Books to Read in 2020

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6. The Year of Less by Cait Flanders

Read if you liked: The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo

"In her late twenties, Cait Flanders found herself stuck in the consumerism cycle that grips so many of us: earn more, buy more, want more, rinse, repeat. When she realized that nothing she was doing or buying was making her happy—only keeping her from meeting her goals—she decided to set herself a challenge: she would not shop for an entire year. The Year of Less documents Cait’s life for twelve months during which she bought only consumables: groceries, toiletries, and gas for her car. Blending Cait’s compelling story with inspiring insight and practical guidance, The Year of Less will leave you questioning what you’re holding on to in your own life—and, quite possibly, lead you to find your own path of less."

Uplifting Books to Read in 2020

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7. The Crossroads of Should and Must: Find and Follow Your Passion by Elle Luna

Read if you liked: Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert

"Who hasn’t asked the question 'How can I find and follow my true calling?' Elle Luna frames this moment as 'standing at the crossroads of Should and Must.' 'Should' is what we feel we ought to be doing, or what is expected of us. 'Must' is the thing we dream of doing, our heart’s desire. The Crossroads of Should and Must guides us from the small moment, discovering our Must, to the big moment—actually doing something about it, and returning to share our new gifts with the world."

Uplifting Books to Read in 2020

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8. The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself by Michael Alan Singer

Read if you liked: The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

"Whether this is your first exploration of inner space, or you’ve devoted your life to the inward journey, this book will transform your relationship with yourself and the world around you. You’ll discover what you can do to put an end to the habitual thoughts and emotions that limit your consciousness. By tapping into traditions of meditation and mindfulness, author and spiritual teacher Michael A. Singer shows how the development of consciousness can enable us all to dwell in the present moment and let go of painful thoughts and memories that keep us from achieving happiness and self-realization."

Uplifting Books to Read in 2020

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9. How to Do Nothing by Jenny Odell

Read if you liked: The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell

"Nothing is harder to do these days than nothing. But in a world where our value is determined by our 24/7 data productivity, doing nothing may be our most important form of resistance. So argues artist and critic Jenny Odell in this field guide to doing nothing (at least as capitalism defines it). Odell sees our attention as the most precious—and overdrawn—resource we have. Once we can start paying a new kind of attention, she writes, we can undertake bolder forms of political action, reimagine humankind’s role in the environment, and arrive at more meaningful understandings of happiness and progress."

Uplifting Books to Read in 2020

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10. Wellth: How I Learned to Build a Life, Not a Résumé by Jason Wachob

Read if you liked: The Universe Has Your Back by Gabrielle Bernstein

“Many of us aren’t satisfied with just trying to accumulate the most money and toys. The good life is no longer just about the material—instead, it can be found in a lifestyle that is devoted to mental, physical, and emotional health. A wellthy existence is one in which happiness is attainable, health is paramount, and daily living is about abundance. It’s a life in which work is purposeful; friendships are deep and plentiful; and there’s a daily sense of richness or overflowing joy. But since there’s no one-size-fits all definition for a wellthy existence, this book serves as a guide to help you embark on your own personal journey that is both unique and meaningful.”

Uplifting Books to Read in 2020

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What are some of your favorite inspirational or uplifting books? Let us know in the comments below!

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