“Not all readers are leaders, but all leaders are readers.” —Harry S. Truman, 33rd President of the United States @JackCanfield (Click to Tweet!)

blog - another secret of success

My library and office bookcases are full, so I’ve had to get creative with my book storage!

Go into the home of almost any wealthy, highly successful person and you will find a library of books—sometimes an actual room such as a den or a library, other times just lots of bookshelves or stacks on the floor of books that they have read. In my own case I have read more than 3,000 books in a wide variety of fields that relate to my work as a trainer, speaker, author, entrepreneur and leader.

Reading — and applying what I read — has been a critical part of my success. I consider it one of my most important daily disciplines. I read for at least an hour a day—sometimes much more, like when I am on a five-hour plane trip.

Recently, I was reviewing questions for a teleseminar and came across the following question:

“One of my goals is to learn new success habits by reading a new book each month. I’ve often heard you reference other authors whose books you have read. Since there are so many books out there on any given subject, I was wondering if you could give us a list of your favorites along with their respective categories so we could get your insight as to what are some good resources to have.” – Linda

First, I think Linda’s goal is a great one. One of the success principles I teach is Learn More to Earn More. I also teach that everyone should read something educational, inspirational or motivational for at least twenty minutes a day. This is part of what I feel everyone’s Hour of Power should be in the morning—twenty minutes of meditation, twenty minutes of reading, and twenty minutes of aerobic exercise.

Of course, more time in each category will produce even more impressive results, but my experience of over forty years of teaching and coaching people has taught me that if you do this, you will end up in the top 3% of people in terms of income, professional impact, health and fitness and fulfillment.

So, in response to Linda’s question I have prepared the following list of three to five of my favorite books (the ones that have had the greatest impact on my life) in each of several categories having to do with all the areas of success that I focus on.

Here it is…


The One Minute Millionaire by David Bach
Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill and Think and Grow Rich: A Black Choice by Dennis Kimbro
The Richest Man in Babylon by George S. Clason
Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki with Sharon Lechter
The Soul of Money by Lynne Twist

Job and Career

Do What You Love, The Money Will Follow by Marsha Sinetar
What Color Is Your Parachute? by Richard Bolles (He releases an updated version every year.)
Swim with the Sharks without Being Eaten Alive by Harvey MacKay
Networking Like a Pro by Ivan Misner
Networking Is a Contact Sport by Joe Sweeney
Getting Things Done by David Allen


For Couples:
Men Are From Mars, Women Are from Venus by Dr. John Gray
Getting the Love You Want: A Guide for Couples by Dr. Harville Hendricks
The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman

For Single People:
Keeping the Love You Find by Dr. Harville Hendricks
The Soulmate Secret by Arielle Ford

Nonviolent Communication by Dr. Marshall Rosenberg
How to Talk so Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish
I would also add The Aladdin Factor by Mark Victor Hansen and myself. (It’s a great book on how to ask for and get anything you want from other people.)

Health and Fitness

Are You Confused? by Paavo Airola
Body for Life by Bill Phillips
The Blood Sugar Solution by Dr. Mark Hyman
The Virgin Diet: Drop 7 Foods, Lose 7 Pounds, Just 7 Days by JJ Virgin

Spiritual and Emotional Growth

The Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda
Ask and It Is Given by Esther and Jerry Hicks
The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff by Richard Carlson

For a more complete list of books that I recommend, read pages 441-451 of The Success Principles: How to Get from Where You Are to Where You Want to Be. It is an extensive list of suggested reading, audio programs and other resources that will accelerate your success.

Happy reading!

As the beloved originator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul® series, Jack Canfield fostered the emergence of inspirational anthologies as a genre—and watched it grow to a billion dollar market. As the driving force behind the development and delivery of over 100 million books sold through the Chicken Soup for the Soul® franchise, Jack Canfield is uniquely qualified to talk about success. Jack is America’s #1 Success Coach and wrote the life-changing book The Success Principles: How to Get From Where You Are to Where You Want to Be and speaks around the world on this subject. Follow Jack at www.jackcanfield.com and sign up for his free resources today!

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Image courtesy of Abhi Sharma.