I’ve always been a smart chick, but when I took the entrepreneurial dive, I knew it was gonna take more than my ambition to build the business and career of my dreams. As I looked at my vision for the future, it became blazingly obvious that if I was going to become the woman I dreamed of being and own the life I wanted, I needed to level up my skill set.
For a while, I “researched” my growth plan by pinning inspiration quotes, advice and good reads on Pinterest. You know, the busy work you fool yourself into thinking will help you grow, but in reality you never do anything about it? Sound familiar? Yeah, thought so.
Then one day I said to myself “Grow up and get the tools you need to become the woman you want to be.” So I did, and it’s been one of the best decisions of my life.
This was my reading list.
By Ramit Sethi
Because I didn’t grow up learning the nuances of money management and financial principles, it felt kinda intimidating to start as a 28 year old. I knew I needed to (especially as an entrepreneur with big dreams), but where the heck should I even start?
This book. This book is exactly where to start.
Don’t be fooled by the cheese ball title. No sexy-but-worthless money talk, just ballsy, honest, real advice. If you want to take charge of your financial future so you can live the life you want, this is a must-read. It covers budgets, savings, debt, retirement and investing all in a way anyone can understand, and that’s just the start. There’s no room for victim/scarcity mindsets or behaviors, so be ready to squash those and leave ’em behind! If you’re itching to build a strong financial foundation for the life you’ve always dreamed of, this book is for you.
Seriously, go buy it right now. It’s $7.67 on Amazon. What are you waiting for? Go go go!
By Aliza Licht
While the first part of this book speaks to corporate women, the latter half is much more applicable to entrepreneurs.
It reads like a fun story from a girlfriend. Packed with nuggets of fashion glam, it’s a great look into the hard work required to build dreams and the principles that form strong career foundations, whether corporate or entrepreneurial. I loved her “Insider Tips” sprinkled throughout the book – great takeaways that can be applied to any career path.
Licht has great insight when it comes to social media, too. Her perspective on building and maintaining a conversational momentum with your audience was really inspiring.
The most valuable part of this book from an entrepreneurial perspective is the way Licht describes “creating the brand of you.” Understanding how to intentionally craft your brand, and then how to maintain and grow it is a hard topic to tackle, but I think she does it really well. Great for anyone who really wants to take things to the next level.
P.S. “Chapter 18: Making Cocktails Count” has a lot of insight into networking/building relationships (and you guys know I’m kiiiinda into that). 😉
By Cara Alwill Leyba
This book is one big hug from one entrepreneur sister to another. What started as a “might-as-well-check-this-out” book quickly became a “omg-keeping-to-reference-forever” book.
I couldn’t put it down and drank it up like the chilled glass of champagne it was. Each page was inspiring, invigorating and exciting. I found myself dreaming big (“limitless luxe” as Cara calls it), and I was loving it hardcore.
Some books are manual types, but this one is like a massive pep talk for your vision, which was just what my soul had been needing. For big picture people like me, it’s the perfect read – instead of feeding you a ton of little “have-tos,” it gives you a strong framework that not only supports whatever vision is inside you, but feeds it as well. It’s also a precious reminder to cherish, uplift, and cheer on the women around us, and Cara shares tons of great ways to beat the competition tendencies and replace them with sisterhood. YES!
LOVE that she packs in the interviews. There’s nothing that energizes me more than feeling the excitement and passion another biz babe shares. It’s contagious and inspiring, and this book is full of them! P.S. My fav is Rachel Luna – her interview is a must read!
This book isn’t so much a nitty gritty guide to growing a business as it is a heartfelt, meaty and bubbly (all at the same time) guide to being your best self, both personally as a woman and as an entrepreneur. So worth the read!
The Secret Thoughts of Successful Women: Why Capable People Suffer from the Impostor Syndrome and How to Thrive in Spite of It
By Valerie Young
It’s tough being a woman, ain’t no lie. But when you’re constantly fighting the feeling of not being good enough, undeserving of success or seeming like a fraud, entrepreneur life can be total hell.
The Imposter Syndrome sucks.
Valerie Young tackles this issue head on, starting with the fact that you’re not alone. Exploring how your family and environments all play a role in shaping your inner voice, she helps you identify and work through the unhealthy mindsets that may be holding you back. She also dives into the psychology behind how men and women are perceived with regards to their work. While there’s no room for the blame game, it’s fascinating to realize how much our society influences what we believe about ourselves. The author has also included action steps throughout the book to help you apply and get the most out of the material.
This book is a slower read (I’m still working my way through it), but that’s because it’s packed with mountain-moving stuff, so don’t be afraid. If you struggle with seeing the worth in yourself, this book might just be the “aha moment” you’ve been looking for.
Stop worrying if you’re good enough for success. You are good enough, and Valerie Young will help you own it.
By Julia Pimsleur
Julia Pimsleur knows what it’s like to start building a dream without a ton of cash, but she didn’t let that be where she stayed.
If you’re curious about the world of angel investors, venture capital and the like, this book is jam-packed with valuable information on what it takes to raise investments and makes navigating the world of venture capitalism more understandable. Pimsleur also provides exercises at the end of the book to help you put all the concepts into practice.
The story of her process and growth is incredibly valuable, insightful, and a wonderful example of a woman who built a highly profitable business while also investing her heart and soul into her family. Pimsleur proves you don’t have to have a fancy business degree to do big things and make even bigger money.
By Grace Bonney
Confession: I haven’t got around to buying this book for myself, but I bought it for my sister-in-law a while back and then proceeded to borrow and ravenously read it. 😀
This gorgeous interview-style book is loaded with the stories of incredible female entrepreneurs of all ages, colors, sizes, and walks of life. Designers, actors, editors, chefs, activists, journalists and more share tidbits of wisdom that will hardcore motivate and inspire, and the stunning photography will leave you drooling (and wanting to upgrade your camera).
If you need a blast of empowerment, inspiration and encouragement to pursue your dreams every now and then, this is a PERFECT book to keep around.
What? You didn’t think I was all work and no play, did you?
Sometimes you just need to be encouraged by the life stories of funny women you wish were your best friends.
These books are inspiring, thought provoking, utterly hilarious, and a great reminder that even these ladies had to work super hard to get where they are, and it wasn’t all champagne and roses. Just what you need to keep your biz babe juices flowing! It’s like having a super long brunch with these gals where you learn all their secrets and adventures while laughing hysterically. Basically this is my dream, and I’m still holding out it’ll come true someday.
Tina? Amy? Mindy? You listening? (I’ll even pick up the tab.)
If you’re tired of being held back by your own excuses and want to level up, take this as a sign to get going!
Don’t waste another year pinning crap to your Pinterest boards and then forgetting it’s there. Load up your Amazon cart and start growing into the brilliant, unstoppable woman you’ve always dreamed of becoming. You won’t regret it!
P.S. Do you want 2018 to be the year of fearless, unstoppable growth for you and your business? (Ummm, who doesn’t?) Be a woman of action and grab the tools you need to thrive – I’ve got exactly what you need!
Bonus: Blogs for Gals Who Aren’t Messin’ Around
For some inspiring reading on the reg, be sure to check out and subscribe to Create & Cultivate and The Everygirl. I love how they motivate, educate, and push me to be my best self. We all need more of that, amirite?! (Psst – Don’t forget to add them to your Insta feed too!)