10 Books Sure to Upgrade Your Mindsets 

Mindsets are our mental lenses that shape how we view the world. But our mindsets do more than just shape how we view the world, they drive and are foundational to our success. Over and over again, mindset research has demonstrated that our mindsets our thinking (decision making and problem solving), our learning (and development), our behavior (and performance), and even our well-being. Thus, if we can improve our mindsets, we can improve our lives and our success in life.  

My primary source for upgrading my mindsets has been through the books that I read. If you are a bookworm like me, and want some great readings sure to help you develop success mindsets, I have compiled the list below.

If you would like more information about success mindsets, please check out my blog. And/or, if you might be interested in receiving a mindset assessment, coaching, training, or consulting related to success mindsets for yourself, your team, your department, or your organization, check out my website, or send me an email: ryan@ryangottfredson.com.  

Books to Upgrade Your Mindset

1. The Five-Minute Journal by Intelligent Change

I am not sure there has been a book that has done more to help me develop success mindsets than this one. Fueled by mindset research, this journal has you answer three questions in the morning and two questions in the evening to drive you to higher levels of success.  

2. Leadership and Self-deception by The Arbinger Institute

The Arbinger Institute has three great books related to improving your mindsets (see also Anatomy of Peace and The Outward Mindset). But, this is the book that got it all started for me. I am a much improved person for having read this (these) books.  

3. Creativity, Inc. by Ed Catmull 

The best business book that I have ever read. Ed Catmull is the President of Pixar Animation and took over Disney Animation after Disney bought Pixar. He does a fantastic job of explaining how a leader can create an environment with the mindsets to sustain creativity and innovation.

4. Lift: The Fundamental State of Leadership by Ryan & Robert Quinn

I don’t know if it is possible for me to state how impactful this book has been in my life. In this book, Ryan and Robert Quinn provide an exceptional and memorable framework to assess whether or not you are being someone that others want to be influenced by. Read this for an immediate upgrade in your mindsets.  

5. Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Carol Dweck  

In this book, Carol Dweck dives into one particular set of mindsets called fixed and growth mindsets. Of the different sets of mindsets, this set has received the most research, and it has led mindset experts to say: “Cultivating a growth mindset could be the single most important thing you ever do to help you achieve success.” This book walks through how having a growth mindset is essential to success in parenting, business, school, and relationships.  

6. Multipliers by Liz Wiseman

In this book, Liz Wiseman explains that Multipliers get two times out of those they lead than Diminishers. Are you a Multiplier or Diminisher? The primary difference is in the mindsets of the leader. Also, I think that most Diminisher are not purposely Diminishers. They just lack the self-awareness to recognize the fact that they are Diminishers. Upgrade your mindsets and awareness by reading this book and become more of a Multiplier. 

7. Daring Greatly by Brené Brown

I love all of Brené Brown’s books and they have all had a huge impact on my life and my mindsets. I personally liked Daring Greatly the most. This book changed my mindset towards vulnerability and true strength. It will help you change your mindsets around how you look and the fear of getting hurt. To be successful you have to have the mindsets that will allow you to step into the arena. Her other books are: The Gifts of Imperfection, Rising Strong, and Braving the Wilderness. They are all fantastic.  

8. Give and Take: A Revolutionary Approach to Success by Adam Grant 

I don’t think you are going to find a more compelling and heavily-researched book about the importance of being a giver (as opposed to a matcher or a taker). But, being a giver is fueled by your mindsets. In this book, Adam Grant does a great job of guiding people on how to be an effective giver.  

9. Can't Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds by David Goggins  

Incredible true story that takes you on a journey from abused, lost, and troubled child to Navy SEAL. This journey includes overcoming the effects of abuse, lack of self-confidence, failing in the Air Force, being overweight, and overcoming the rigors of SEAL training. The entire book is just as the title suggests: Goggins demonstrates what it takes to master your mind and defy the odds.  

10. You are a Badass by Jen Sincero

Being a Badass takes having the right mindsets toward life. Jen Sincero conveys that powerfully! While I loved her perspective and advice, what was most powerful to me is how she personally demonstrated how changing her mindsets is what led her to go from being broke to becoming a multimillionaire. I think this should be a must-read for everyone. 

Because I couldn't pick just 10, here is a bonus book:

11. A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose by Eckhart Tolle  

I am going to admit that I do not love Eckhart Tolle’s writing style, and this book is not a light book. But, it is a book that will induce a massive amount of introspection. If you want to be successful, you have got to get out of your own way. This book helps you do that, along with helping you identify healthier mindsets to operate with.  

Ryan Gottfredson

Ryan Gottfredson Leadership Professor, Conultant, Speaker, & Coach