Self Help Books: Finding Mr. (or Ms.) Right

Written by on June 25, 2019


There is nothing worse than waking up one day to find out that you’ve been spending time with the wrong person. That is, except waking up with the wrong self-help book on your nightstand.


You may think I’m about to compare your next self-help book to dating.  Well, I’m not here to disappoint, but as you’ll see, the quality of the former may determine the quality of the latter.


Your choice of self-help book is far more important than your choice of next partner in life.  


We’re brought up to believe that finding the right partner in life is something of utmost importance.  After all, it will determine with whom you spend the rest of your life and therefore nothing to take lightly.  


Yet according to GraziaDaily, the average relationship lasts just under 3 years, .meaning there isn’t as much permanence as we were led to believe.  There is however a person with whom you are guaranteed to spend the rest of your life….you!


Building the right relationship with ourselves is something often overlooked in the search for happiness.  For those on that quest, self-help books are a staple of that process and one that we should not take lightly.  


Imagine our next self-help book as that long-term commitment of which a poor choice can have long-lasting deleterious effects, just like a bad breakup.  Finding the right one, however, can open up new worlds, make us feel like a million dollars, and provide a lifetime of joy, fulfillment, and success.


Here are the key items you must consider when looking for Mr./Ms. Right…the book.


Know thyself.  

How do you learn the best?  Which one of the seven learning styles works for you?  Maybe you’re visual or maybe aural (audio).  You could be a speed reader or like a lot of diagrams.  


Find a book that matches your style.  And don’t worry about content just yet.  Most content can be found in every learning style there is, so find your fit.

Know what you want from the relationship.  

What exactly do you hope to accomplish by reading this book? (see the 6 ways we render self-help books useless).  What problem are you trying to solve or area you need to improve? Does this book speak directly to it?  


Reading a self-help book that doesn’t intend to address your needs is not just a waste of time.  It’s a frustrating and futile experience that may do more harm than good.


Don’t jump right into bed with the first one you see.  

While you always want to make sure it feels right at first, go beyond the cover.  You can often get a table of contents or an excerpt if you’re buying online. If you can’t, see if you can locate it and browse the book at a local bookstore.


Many of the principles you are looking to find will be in a variety of books.  Find one that excites you from the outside AND the inside.


Do a background check

What do you know about the author?  Has this person been through the journey upon which you’re about to embark?  Can they lead the way?


Everyone can have a voice, but not everyone with a voice is able to share worthwhile information and call you to action in the right way.  Look for competence over popularity and credibility over personality.


Get to know their friends

Talk to an ex, someone who has read it.  How was it for them? 


Barring an overwhelming number of negative reviews, don’t worry about the bad stuff.  Read the good reviews to understand the good qualities and results people took from it.  


Think of it like a review of vanilla ice cream.  Not everyone will like it, but that doesn’t mean it’s not super tasty.


Next time your make the big commitment of time, energy,  and attention to a self help book, be sure it’s meant to be… successful. Otherwise you might end up in a nasty breakup with most important person in your life for years to come:  yourself.


  • Do you agree with us about the importance of finding the right book?

  • Do you have a story you’d like to share about an experience you or a friend have had with a self-help book?  

  • Was this article impactful in any way?  

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