Inspirational Books For Teenagers

From Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul to The Secret to Teen Power

You may wonder what you can do to inspire your teen, but if you are like most parents of adolescents, this can be a challenge. That's when having "outside sources" of inspiration can be particularly effective. Analogous to the jokes about how people trust Dr. Google more than their own physician, teens may be more likely to trust the words of others than the most respectable parent. Good, inspirational books are a wonderful option when it comes to influencing your child in the way you wish but with a different voice.

Not all literature is the same, and it's important to have trusted sources if you take this approach. There are, in fact, several inspirational messages we shouldn't give our teens. Telling your child that someone better will come along when they break up with their first love not only invalidates them, but it's a missed opportunity for parents (or a good author) to talk about how teens can deal with a breakup. Likewise, the common pop psychology kids often hear that says that they shouldn't care about what anybody thinks, is not the message we want them to hear. While it's important for our teens to learn assertiveness skills, and not care about what everybody thinks, it is important that they listen to and respect how some people think, especially their parents. 

The teen years are challenging for even for the most mature teens (and the most motivated, loving parents). This place between childhood and early adulthood is filled with landmines. And if adolescent issues are not enough, teens simply don't know where they lie on the spectrum from day to day. One day they want to be pampered like a young child and the next they expect full adult privileges. As parents, we know that today's teenagers need all of the wise support they can get in  the trying times of adolescence.

Check out the following inspirational books that may not only aid teens but give their parents and few tips and insights as well!


You Don't Have to Learn Everything the Hard Way

Inspiring books can make a difference for you teenage children
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You Don't Have to Learn Everything the Hard Way covers a lot of topics that teens need and want to read about: from sensitive areas like sexual abuse, pain, and hard times, to issues like understanding how to deal with peer pressure and making the right choice about drugs. These are the topics that teens asked Aunt Laya to write about.

They also asked for inspiration and ideas about goals, life changes, and sex. Laya Saul does not shy away from any topic that can empower a young adult. She gives teens the tools to meet life's trials head on! Like a favorite aunt, Laya Saul encourages her readers to use challenges as stepping-stones. 


Think Confident, Be Confident for Teens

Confidence is like a magnet that attracts people to you and helps you get closer to reaching your goals. When you believe in yourself, you send the message that you have the brains, ability, and talent to handle whatever life sends your way. And the truth is, you do!

Using powerful skills based in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), Think Confident, Be Confident for Teens shows you how to tap into your self-esteem so you can be yourself in every situation, no matter how awkward you feel or scary that may sound. The fun exercises and tips in this confidence-coaching workbook will guide you past feelings of self-doubt and encourage you to believe in yourself, strengthen your friendships, and meet every challenge head-on. You will:

  • Recognize and overcome the self-doubting thoughts that bring you down
  • Grow your confident thoughts into confident actions
  • Enjoy a full social life and attract new friends
  • Feel smarter at school and build on your extracurricular talents

If you want to get started before reading the book, check out our  8 essential strategies to raise a confident teen, or, if your teen is shy, learn some of the ways you can help a shy teen develop self-confidence.


Daily Reflections For Highly Effective Teens

Sean Covey's The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens has helped hundreds of thousands of teens find a path toward success and personal fulfillment. Now, with Daily Reflections for Highly Effective Teens, we have a book that will inspire teens to understand, appreciate, and internalize the power of the 7 Habits.

With this day-by-day success guide, teenagers will learn how to improve their self-image, build friendships, resist peer pressure, achieve their goals, make important decisions, and live healthier, more self-confident lives. Packed with great quotes, excellent ideas, and inspiration, Sean Covey's warm, insightful, and humorous guide gives teens a road map for surviving and thriving in adolescence and beyond.


Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul

Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul: 101 Stories of Life, Love and Learning is part of the hugely popular Chicken Soup for the Soul series.

This book contains stories, poems, and cartoons relating to the specific troubles that traumatize teenagers everywhere. While the type of problems that teens face vary from child to child, there's certain to be at least a few stories which resonate with your teen and make the world seem a smaller and warmer place.


Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul II

Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul II offers more inspiring stories to help you master the game we call life. Today's teens have even more issues and social pressures to juggle than young adults just 20 years ago.

This book, like its predecessor, can be your guide; a beacon in the darkness, a safe haven in a storm, a warm hug in the cold, and a respite from loneliness. There's no preaching as to what you should and shouldn't do. Instead, this book is full of teens sharing their experiences on learning to be happy with who they are, learning to love themselves, and becoming the best person they can be.


The Secret to Teen Power

Since its original publication, The Secret has inspired millions to live extraordinary lives. The Secret to Teen Power makes the knowledge of the law of attraction accessible and relevant to today’s teens. It explains the law of attraction in relation to teen issues such as friends and relationships, schoolwork, and self-image. It explains how teens can transform their own lives and live their dreams, by understanding and using the power they have in their hands. ​

The Secret to Teen Power promises to follow the path of The Secret, inspiring teens and young people to bring joy and harmony to all aspects of their lives.


Taste Berries for Teens 3

Bettie B. Youngs, Ph.D. and Jennifer Leigh Youngs have worked with hundreds of teens of various ages and backgrounds to get to the heart of real-life teen issues. This latest offering reflects what teens tell them is the staple of life-making, keeping and coping with friends, finding someone special and then dealing with makeups and breakups, and sorting through control issues with their parents.

More and more, teens are concerned about friends facing a health crisis (such as AIDS or eating disorders), having a serious alcohol or drug problem, and how to help their parents with their problems. Taste Berries for Teens 3 addresses these growing concerns through a combination of stories expressing teens' thoughts and the compassionate wisdom of Bettie and Jennifer Youngs.

Taste Berries for Teens 3 lightens things up with a new chapter chockful of little-known trivia that teens will find fascinating and fun and wraps up with a section called "Ask Dr. Youngs," where Bettie answers the most common questions she gets from teens in the areas of self-improvement, friendship, love and sex, grieving, rumors, harassment, and parents. Her responses reveal her love for teens by providing real solutions and encouraging teens to talk to their parents or important adults.


Life Lists for Teens

The book Life Lists for Teens will empower your teen to think for himself (or herself). It will encourage him to take a good look at the issues he faces every day and add some meaning to the choices he makes. The lists make quick thought-provoking reads for busy teens. This book really is a must-have for your teenager.


Teens Can Make It Happen: Nine Steps for Success

Prepare yourself for a lifetime of emotional and intellectual success and physical well-being with this essential and practical guide—perfect for teens, parents, grandparents, and educators alike.

The teenage years are filled with growth, promise, trials, and tribulations. During this time, one may be faced with life-changing decisions and challenges. And often these dilemmas are not easily answered. In Teens Can Make It Happen: Nine Steps to Success, prominent businessman and author Stedman Graham guides readers to a better understanding of themselves, their strengths, and their desires while helping them to devise and achieve plans for realizing their visions. In an entertaining and interactive style, Graham bridges the gap between education and the real world and provides teenagers with the means to boost self-esteem, avoid peer pressure, and handle the daily stresses that come with being a young adult.​​

As founder of Athletes Against Drugs, an organization created to combat drug abuse and promote youth leadership, Graham knows how to talk to teenagers. Teens Can Make It Happen is filled with relevant and practical wisdom for today’s young adults. Its hands-on approach and personal style make this engaging handbook a must-have for teens as well as for parents, grandparents, and anyone else who influences young people.


Life Strategies for Teens

From the son of Dr. Phil McGraw comes Life Strategies for Teens, the New York Times bestselling guide to teenage success, and the first guide to teenage life that won’t tell you what to do, or who to be, but rather how to live life best.

Employing the techniques from Dr. Phillip C. McGraw’s Life Strategies, his son Jay provides teens with the Ten Laws of Life, which make the journey to adulthood an easier and more fulfilling trip. Whether dealing with the issues of popularity, peer pressure, ambition, or ambivalence, Life Strategies for Teens is an enlightening guide to help teenagers not only stay afloat but to thrive during these pivotal years.

Whether you are a teen looking for a little help, or a parent or grandparent wanting to provide guidance, this book tackles the challenges of adolescence like no other. Combining proven techniques for dealing with life’s obstacles and the youth and wit of writer Jay McGraw, Life Strategies for Teens is sure to improve the lives of all who read it.


Stolen Voices: Young People's War Diaries, from World War I to Iraq

Zlata Filipovic’s diary of her harrowing war experiences in the Balkans, published in 1993, made her a globally recognized spokesperson for children affected by military conflict.

In Stolen Voices, she and co-editor Melanie Challenger have gathered fifteen diaries of young people coping with war, from World War I to the struggle in Iraq that continues today.  With profound testimonies of shattered youth, and the gritty particulars of war in the tradition of Anne Frank, this extraordinary collection—the first of its kind—is sure to leave a lasting impression on young and old readers alike.

Bottom Line on Inspiring Your Teen

The selections discussed above are great ways to inspire your teen without having to speak a word yourself. At the same time, reading can simultaneously empower your child as she is doing the reading and discovering herself.

When you find that these books are truly inspiring for your teen, you may wish to also check out our list of books for motivating teens.


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