Lately, life coaches, authors, celebrities and others have used books to spread their knowledge across wide audiences. This list of nine self-help and motivational books feature African authors sharing tips and tricks on how readers could become the best versions of themselves.
Ranging from reflections on confidence and female empowerment to biblical life lessons to instruction manuals on running a business, this book list covers a diverse range of topics. Using these self-help guides, readers can improve their lives and acquire new skills. Written for the modern woman, Tiwalola Ogunlesi’s Confident and Killing It and Dj Zinhle’s and Nokubonga Mbanga’s Meeting Your Power: Returning Home to Yourself feature practical advice and real-life examples to empower women to overcome any fears and be their confident selves. In keeping with this theme of facing fears, Luvvie Ajayi Jones’s Professional Troublemaker is aptly named “the fear-fighter manual” and talks about the importance of truth-telling by having the courage to speak up against injustices and for yourself.
While Yrsa Daley-Ward’s The How: Notes on the Great Work of Meeting Yourself teaches us to explore the depths of our inner selves using reflective questions and writing exercises, His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s and Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World is all about discovering peace and joy in our lives despite numerous sufferings. Books like these remind us how we can continue to grow and understand who we are even in the midst of hardship. Nnedi Okorafor’s Broken Places and Outer Spaces shows us how the painful journey from athlete to paralysis led her to become a creative writer and find hope and joy in spaces she had not dreamed of before. Still others like Emmanuel Acho’s Illogical and Yvonne Orji’s Bamboozled by Jesus use life lessons learned from the Bible to show readers how to expand their own horizons.
We hope that this list helps you gain some essential life skills and promote your personal growth through inspirational stories and practical tips!
Confident and Killing It
In Confident and Killing It, Tiwalola guides readers in becoming the most unapologetic and unstoppable version of themselves. Featuring practical tips and tricks and real-life stories from everyday women, Confident and Killing It will help you master your mind, overcome fear and live life to the fullest. (Harper Collins/2022)
The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World
Nobel Peace Prize Laureates His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu offer us the reflection of real lives filled with pain and turmoil in the midst of which they have been able to discover a level of peace, of courage, and of joy to which we can all aspire in our own lives. (Avery/2016)
The How: Notes on the Great Work of Meeting Yourself
Yrsa gently takes readers by the hand, encouraging them to join her as she explores how we can remove our filters, and see and feel more of who we really are…The How can be used to start conversations, to prompt writing, to delve deeper–whether you’re solo, or with friends, on your feet or writing from the solace of home. (Penguin Books/2021)
Illogical is the go-to book for all readers ready to become change-makers. With a step-by-step guide to finding our callings and shifting our mindsets, enlivened by stories from Acho’s life and other illogical pioneers, and the Bible, Acho asks us to replace the limits set for us, and which we set for ourselves, with a world of possibility. Our horizons, he shows us, are endless. (Flatiron/2022)
Entrepreneurship 101 aims to educate South Africans about the fundamentals of entrepreneurship while looking at a uniquely South African business environment. This book will help aspirant entrepreneurs understand the very basics of running a business in South Africa. It will discuss what entrepreneurship is all about and guide the reader on the journey of starting a business. (Jacana/2016)
With humor and honesty, and guided by the influence of her professional troublemaking Nigerian grandmother, Funmilayo Faloyin, Luvvie Ajayi Jones walks us through what we must get right within ourselves before we can do the things that scare us; how to use our voice for a greater good; and how to put movement to the voice we’ve been silencing — because truth-telling is a muscle. (Penguin Life/2021)
Bamboozled by Jesus
In this frank, fresh advice book, Orji takes readers on a journey through 25 life lessons, gleaned from her experiences and her favorite source of inspiration: the Bible. Orji infuses wit and heart in sharing pointers like why the way up is sometimes down, and how fear is synonymous to food poisoning. Her joyful, confident approach to God will inspire everyone to catapult themselves out of the mundane and into the magnificent. (Flatiron/2021)
Broken Places and Outer Spaces
In this book Nnedi takes the reader on a journey from her hospital bed deep into her memories…Through these compelling stories and her own, Nnedi reveals a universal truth: What we perceive as limitations have the potential to become our greatest strengths—far greater than when we were unbroken. (TED Books/2019)
Meeting Your Power: Returning Home To Yourself
Being an empowered woman is more than just doing, it is also about being. This book will show you how to look at power differently and will help you to unleash and harness your inner power with honest, simple and practical examples and advice. Most importantly, you will learn that your greatest empowerment project is being authentically you, every day. (Tracey McDonalds/2018)