The 8 Best Inspirational Books to Buy for Teens in 2018

Help your child feel confident and empowered

Being a teenager is hard. From schoolwork and the stress of figuring out college logistics like where to go and how to get in, to dealing with peer pressure, hormonal fluctuations, and a body that seems to be changing by the day, teens are dealing with more than their fair share of drama.

If it seems like it’s impossible to connect with your kid these days, know that you aren’t alone. When a real-life conversation isn’t in the cards, it’s possible that a book can help relay the message that you’d like to get across. The following are a few motivational books that are guaranteed to help your teen make it through whatever her current struggle is. From dealing with low self-esteem and peer pressure to plotting a path to success and considering a career, there’s something on the list for every teen issue. Read on to learn about the best inspirational books for teens that you can buy now.

Best Overall Book for Teens: You Don’t Have to Learn Everything the Hard Way

If you’re looking for a book that covers it all, check out “You Don’t Have to Learn Everything the Hard Way” by Laya Saul. Covering topics like sexual abuse, pain, facing obstacles, peer pressure, drugs, and many others, Saul provides teens chapters with bite-sized inspiration in the form of stories, ideas, quotes, and questions to get them thinking critically.

Reviewers says this book is chock-full of tidbits to help teenagers navigate a complicated world. It's a great read for parents and teachers who want to better understand their teens, too.

Best Book for Decision Making: The 6 Most Important Decisions You’ll Ever Make

With all the decisions a teenager makes on a daily basis, it’s obvious that coming to important conclusions over and over again can become exhausting. Of course, some decisions will be more important than others, and that’s where “The 6 Most Important Decisions You’ll Ever Make” by Sean Covey comes into play.

Covey—the author of “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens”—uses his expertise in this book as well, showing teens how to make smart choices regarding the six most crucial points they’ll face during their teenager years. Covey uses real-life stories from around the world to show teens how to succeed in school, make good friends, get along with parents, wisely handle dating and sex issues, avoid addictions, build self-esteem, and more. Covey also uses quotes, quizzes, and cartoons to keep teens interested and inspired.

Best for Self-Esteem: Do Hard Things

With everything the average teenager has to balance and endure, it should come as no surprise that most deal with low self-esteem at least on occasion. Whether it’s a bad grade, a party invite that wasn’t extended, or a rejection from their college of choice, self-esteem is an area where teens could benefit from added support and resources.

That’s why we love “Do Hard Things: A Teenage Rebellion Again Low Expectations” by Alex and Brett Harris. The Harris twins use biblical insights, history, and modern examples to help redefine the teen years as a launching pad for life, not a vacation from responsibility. While the motivation is great, of course, they also map out five concrete ways that teens can actually act to bring about personal and social change.

This book is an Amazon Best Seller because it was written by teens, for teens, and works hard to use humor, personal anecdotes, and practical examples to really reach teens in a way that will resonate.

Best About Success: The Success Principles for Teens

There isn’t a teen out there who doesn’t want to be successful—it just might take a little bit of hand-holding to get there. “The Success Principles for Teens: How to Get From Where You Are to where You Want to Be” by Jack Canfield and Kent Healy can do that. Together with Healy, Canfield (creator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series) has created a fun and engaging book that offers a road map with proven principles to help teens reach any goal they desire.

After reading 23 of the most important success strategies that thousands of other teens have used throughout history, your teen will be armed with the tools he or she needs to succeed.

Best Career: What Color Is Your Parachute?

Considering a career path while you're still a teenager seems daunting, even for those of us who have come out on the other side unscathed. “What Color Is Your Parachute? For Teens” by Carol Christen and Richard N. Bolles helps teens face those career questions head on.

Designed to help high school and college students zero in on their favorite skills and find their perfect major or career, the newly updated book includes activities and advice on information interviewing, social media, internships, and more. One reviewer, a school teacher, said they bought a copy of this book for each of their students and they find the material helpful and engaging.

Best Workbook: Life Lists for Teens: Tips, Steps, Hints, and How-Tos

Occasionally, it’s easier for teens to work through their issues by putting pen to paper, rather than just reading how others did things. “Life Lists for Teens: Tips, Steps, Hints, and How-Tos for Growing Up, Getting Along, Learning, and Having Fun” by Pamela Espeland can help teens do just that.

Touted as a “user’s guide to life,” this book has over 200 self-help lists distilled into big topics including health and wellness, relationships, feelings, creativity, personal safety, school, self-esteem, and problem-solving. Each list offers a starting point for learning and thinking, and some are more on the practical side (12 tips for making and keeping friends, for example), while others are more serious (like eight tips for coping with tragedy or disaster).

Best for Positivity: The Power of Positive Thinking, by Dr. Norman Vincent Peale

Of course making any big decision or getting through any difficult stage of life usually boils down to one thing: thinking positively. “The Power of Positive Thinking” by Dr. Norman Vincent Peale is a classic that should be in every teen’s bookshelf for reference.

Dr. Peale's book has sold over five million times thanks to its helpful tips on finding a fulfilling, happy life. Objectives of the book include getting people to believe in themselves and everything they do, building new power and determination, developing the power to reach their goals, and improving personal and professional relationships.

Best Artistic: Do Your Best Forget the Rest Good Vibes Coloring Book

The fun-loving, artistic teen who loves to doodle will probably get a kick out of “Do Your Best Forget the Rest,” a motivational coloring book for adults, teens, and kids. Readers can color the background pictures while poring over 30 quotes that will provide a little inspiration for everyday life. One of the best parts about this book is that there are two copies of every picture, so they can be shared with others.

What's more, coloring has been proven to help decrease stress and increase relaxation, so your teen can wind down and find some zen while using this quirky and fun book.

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At Verywell Family, our Expert writers are committed to researching and writing thoughtful and editorially independent reviews of the best products for your life and your family. If you like what we do, you can support us through our chosen links, which earn us a commission. Learn more about our review process.

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