Site icon Sarah Marandi-Steeves, LCSW, PLLC

Top 5 Books You Need To Read In 2019

If you're looking for books to read around business, entrepreneurship, or personal growth then check out this post with my top 5 book recommendations for this year. These books will help you feel motivated, inspired, and ready to take on the next chapter in your life. #reading #books #business #entrepreneurship #personalgrowth

If you’re a bookworm like me, it’s easy to get lost in a good book. Now, I can appreciate the occasional Netflix binge, but you’re more likely to find me snuggled up with a book in my hand. Reading is one of the best ways to obtain knowledge. The more we know, the more we grow and when I started my business, reading became an imperative part of my business plan. 


“I was born with a reading list I will never finish.”-Maud Casey

I used to binge read romance novels galore (honestly who am I kidding, I still do! I’m such a sucker for the sap!) but once I started my business, I started to focus more on business related books; such as books centered around entrepreneurship, money management, leadership, as well as personal growth and development. 

Knowledge is power and I have found inspiration and motivation in many of the books I have read. In 2018, I read over 240 books. Yes, you read that correctly. Now, before you get too impressed, not every book was a business related book. Trust me, I still love the escape that a romance or suspense novel provides and those books tends to be easier reads. However, out of all of the books I read in 2018, I narrowed down my top 5 that I believe everyone should read in 2019. 

These 5 books not only impacted my thought process in regards to my business, but they also impacted me personally as well, which is why I found them to be so special. As an entrepreneur, I believe that my business is largely impacted by how I am taking care of myself personally. If I am not in a good place mentally, physically, spiritually, and emotionally, then that is going to reflect in the way I run my business. Finding books which encompass both aspects is something to value. 

General Review: Oh Rachel Hollis, I am officially a fan-girl after reading this book. Not only is this book incredibly easy to read, but it’s so relatable! Rachel keeps it real throughout the entire book. She doesn’t use big fancy words to try to impress her audience. She shares some of her most vulnerable moments, in an effort to help her readers feel comfortable in their vulnerability as well. She talks about the struggle many of us face of balancing work and home-life, and everything in between. Reading this book feels as though you are having a conversation with a girlfriend. She focuses on self-love, self-care, empowerment, and achieving overall happiness. She uniquely allows the reader to feel as though they can be both the CEO in their personal and professional lives, unapologetically.

Who should read this: If you’re an entrepreneur, this book is a must read as it truly highlights the path most of us endure: trying to do it all, unsuccessfully doing it all, trying again a different way, trying to balance life in the midst of building a business, anddddd repeat. For me, it was validating and normalized the process.

If you’re not an entrepreneur, this book is still for you. Rachel talks about individual struggles she’s endured which many of us can relate to in one way or another. If you’re looking for a book to motivate you towards self-love, happiness, and exploring who you are this book is for you.

Favorite quote: “You, and only you, are ultimately responsible for who you become and how happy you are.”

Click HERE to purchase.

General Review: This faith-based book was recommended to me by a friend a long time ago, but it wasn’t until this past year that I finally got around to reading it. The timing, as always, was impeccable as this book’s message was exactly what I needed to hear: How to love in a world full of setbacks, disappointment, and difficult people. I think this is something we can ALL relate to. It’s so easy to get caught up in the negativity which surrounds us, and Bob challenges his readers to grow in love, despite those difficulties. He highlights how we all have an obligation to show love and kindness, even when we don’t want to, as we need to “become love” for other people as a way to influence those around us. Talk about powerful stuff.

Bob’s writing style also allows for an easy read. I found myself laughing throughout this entire book, making the reading experience that much more enjoyable. He shares many personal stories and experiences, which allow the reader to really see how the concepts he is discussing are put into everyday life experiences, making the content much more relatable. 

Who should read this: Everyone. Even if you do not identify as a Christian, you are a human being who interacts with other human beings. Yes, this is a faith-based book, however, the concept of loving those around us even when it’s hard is something everyone can work towards improving upon. I am the first one to admit that I have struggled with this in the past, still struggle with this at times currently, and will likely struggle with this again in the future. However, having read this book, I am consistently  reminded of the importance of taking a step back and re-evaluting my thoughts and actions in these circumstances, reminding myself that my actions will directly impact those around me and it’s my job to show kindness and love, even when it’s difficult to do so.

Favorite quote: “People don’t grow where they’re planted; they grow where they’re loved.”

Click HERE to purchase. 

General Review: If you follow me, then you know I absolutely love, love, loveeee Gabrielle Bernstein. I stumbled upon Gabby’s books and podcast when I was first starting out in my business and I attribute so much of my initial growth and mindset to her work. So, of course whenever she releases a new book, I immediately buy it and binge read it. Judgement Detox was no exception and per usual, Gabby delivered. Long story short: every single one of us is judgmental. Plain and simple. Whether it be judgmental of ourselves, others, or both, none of us are void of this behavior.

Gabby’s book focuses on steps each of us can take to release anger, jealousy, pain, and resentment we have been holding onto. Holding onto negative energy is going to increase the likelihood of us emitting that negative energy back into the world. If you follow Gabby, then you know much of her work is centered around mindset and energy shifts. This books focuses on how healing our own wounds will help shape our relationships with others, relationships with ourselves, our careers, and overall wellbeing. By releasing our judgements, we are able to improve our quality of life and find more love and internal peace. Think of this book as a spiritual workbook!

Who should read this: Again, everyone. Similar to the previous book, this book is one which everyone can relate to. None of us are void of holding onto anger at one point or another and each of us has likely seen the negative impact that can have. If you are someone who is looking to release your inner anger/frustration/resentment/judgement/pain, then this book is a wonderful start in that healing journey.

For my entrepreneurs reading this post, this book is going to be incredibly helpful in working through the judgment which comes from within. As entrepreneurs, we tend to be our worst critics and that judgment can negatively impact our businesses. Gabby is the queen of entrepreneur life, so this book is incredibly relatable and helpful for my fellow boss-babes. 

Favorite quote: “Love can seem far scarier to us than fear. We’re terrified to let love in, because we fear that when we do, we’ll be susceptible to more pain.”

Click HERE to purchase.

General Review: I learned about this book when my church did an entire series on this book. I remember loving the series so much that I decided the book needed to be added to my to-read list. Fast forward, and here we are. Craig Groeschel is another author I find to have an incredibly captivating writing style. This book was easy to read and enjoyable in the process, which isn’t always the case with faith-based books. Sharing real life experiences with his readers, as well as keeping it real along the way, allows for this book to feel super relatable. Craig also provides space for readers to do some soul-searching/critical thinking along the way, making this book one I would also consider a spiritual workbook.

This book really made me stop and evaluate the decisions I was making in my life, while allowing space for me to see where I could implement positive changes. The main points I took away from this book were:

Who should read this: Anyone who is looking to strengthen and deepen their faith. This book is going to allow for you to dive deeper into scripture and learn more about what it is God has planned for you. Anyone who is feeling lost, stuck, or at a crossroads in their life or business will benefit from the content in this book as it going to help you evaluate where you are and help you get to where you need to be. 

Favorite quote: “Show me your friends, and I’ll show you your future. The people you’re hanging out with today are shaping the person you will become tomorrow.”

Click HERE to purchase.

General Review: If you are a fan of shark tank, then there is a pretty good chance you’ll be a fan of this book, too! I read this book 3 years into my business and got so much out of it, so I can’t imagine how helpful it would have been when I was first starting out. One of the biggest factors holding individuals back from following their entrepreneurial dreams is their finances. Starting a business means investing in that business monetarily and realistically, not everyone has the capital lying around to get started. However! Daymond shows his readers that this is not a reason to let that dream pass you by! Daymond shares his own personal story of growth and success, while also sharing stories of other successful entrepreneurs as well. The common factor? Every one of them experienced financial hardships, yet still found success in their businesses.

What I loved most about this book was that Daymond takes that common fear of “being broke” and challenges the reader to shift their mindset and look at the situation from a different perspective. Instead of having that fear hold you back, he challenges the reader to use it to propel them forward and ultimately build a successful business. Motivating, inspiring, and super easy to read, I have a feeling you’ll have a hard time putting this one down. 

Who should read this: Entrepreneurs in any stage of business, but definitely entrepreneurs in the beginning stages of building their businesses will benefit from the content in this book. As most entrepreneurs experience, success isn’t linear. Business success ebbs and flows, which is why this book is going to be so helpful. It allows for a different perspective around finances and how to create success with little to no capital. If you’re looking for motivation as well as creative ways to tap into various resources to build your brand, then this book is a must read! 

Favorite quote: “It’s gotten to where an entire nation can be energized by the force of a single idea put out into the world in a passionate way through social media—at little or no cost.”

Click HERE to purchase. 

Now, these were my interpretations of the books, however, Edmund Wilson said it best: 


“No two persons ever read the same book.”

You may read one of these books and find what you got out of it is different from what I got out of it, and that is ok! In fact, that’s a good thing. Reading is meant to help us expand our thought process and get us thinking. If you’re only getting out of the books what everyone else is getting out of the books, then you’re going to be thinking like everyone else, too. Form your own opinions and see how these books speak to you and impact your life. 

Also, it’s important to note these book recommendations are solely that: my recommendations. I am not an affiliate for any of them and get nothing in return except for the satisfaction of sharing some awesome recommendations with all of you! 

I would LOVE to know what spoke to you today and encourage you to comment below and share with me!

I am passionate about helping clinicians realize their potential and reach their dreams of owning their very own PRIVATE PRACTICE!! I would LOVE to support YOU on a deeper level in your business. Would 1:1 business support feel like something that would help you get to that next step a little easier? If so, I’d invite you to email me at with what you’d like support around and I can send you some options of how I can support you in getting there.

ALSO!…Click HERE to learn more about my PRIVATE PRACTICE DIGITAL COURSE!! This course is broken into a series of 8 modules which cover ALL of the basics needed for you to begin this journey towards starting your own private practice. These modules include training videos and worksheets to personalize for YOUR practice! PLUS, I added some special bonuses for you!!!

In the meantime, download my FREE Private Practice Decision Making printable! Just add your name + email address below and you will receive an email with a link to your FREEBIE!


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Be Well, 

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