50 Self-Help Classics

50 Self-Help Classics50 Self-Help Classics
by Tom Butler-Bowdon

This title is one of an acclaimed trilogy of the “literature of possibility” recommended to me by a client who felt I would definitely enjoy it and want to share it with our readers. I should alert you to the fact that you more than likely will not find these titles on the shelves of your local book store but can certainly order them very easily from the store or online.

Let me begin by explaining a little bit about this author and what he’s accomplished for lovers of great literature everywhere. I’m tremendously impressed with his efforts and overwhelmed at his achievement. This book is one of three very similar offerings that follow the same reader-friendly format. I’ll explain that template here and then share the individual content under each title.

You’ll want to keep this series of books within arm’s length in your office or home library.

Remember the faithful Cliff Notes we denied using in high school? This approach reminds me of a compact encyclopedia of Cliff Notes introducing and/or reacquainting readers with 50 of the greatest self-help authors and their inspirational classics. Tom Butler-Bowden has spent more than six years researching, reading, and analyzing hundreds of works to compile these three guides to the world’s best literature. Tom is a graduate of the London School of Economics and the University of Sydney. He currently lives and works in both the UK and Australia. You’ll want to check out his website at www.butler-bowdon.com.

The reader-friendly format I spoke of is certainly conducive to getting the message of the original book with clarity and ease. Each classic has its own chapter which is reasonably short and to the point while extremely revealing.

The first page of each chapter begins with a few notable quotes from the classic followed by a feature titled “In a nutshell.” This profile summarizes the entire classic in one or two sentences followed by another interesting feature, “In a similar vein,” which lists several other classics that address the same subject. Thus far–one page.

The author then offers the main idea, context, and impact of the book itself followed by a short, interesting biography of the author.

I first thought this collection of classic reviews would save me from having to read the entire book, and I’m sure some may want to settle for that. However, I found that while it gave me an excellent insight to the gist of each classic and author, it also enticed me to want to read or reread the entire content. Either approach will leave you longing for more.

Here are just a few of the self-help classics included in this must-have collection.

  • As a Man Thinketh by James Allen
  • How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
  • Seven Spiritual Laws of Success by Deepak Chopra
  • The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
  • Real Magic by Wayne Dyer
  • The Road Less Traveled by M. Scott Peck
  • The Power of Positive Living by Norman Vincent Peale
  • Awaken the Giant Within by Anthony Robbins
  • Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway by Susan Jeffers
  • Creative Visualization by Shakti Gawain
  • Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand

(This book review was originally published in 2005 as one of the Top 10 Books – Edition 14.)

About Harry K. Jones

Harry K. Jones is a motivational speaker and consultant for AchieveMax®, Inc., a company of professional speakers who provide custom-designed seminars, keynote presentations, and consulting services. Harry's top requested topics include change management, customer service, creativity, employee retention, goal setting, leadership, stress management, teamwork, and time management. For more information on Harry's presentations, please call 800-886-2629 or fill out our contact form.

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