Best productivity books for creatives

Top 4 Books to Start the New Year Productive and Inspired​

Reading List for a Productive Lifestyle and Long-term Success​

Who doesn’t want to be full of energy, productive, and crushing their goals?

If you’re anything like me, you love to binge productivity videos on YouTube and listen to podcasts to get inspired on how to get more productive.

But there’s something magic about slowing down and reading a whole book.

You’ll get someone’s full wisdom on a selected topic – more thought-through and more complete than a video or podcast episode.


The following books really change your perspective on how to get things done and being efficient, in different ways, all while not at all compromising on feeling well (not burnt out).


… I know you’ll find lists of 10, 20, or even 30 best books to read about productivity out on the internet. While these quantitative lists might work for some, I rather do the opposite and give you 4 really, really good books that you can’t miss out on.

If you’re looking to be impacted in a positive way, you’ll want to consider picking one of these books.

Read the reviews and find the one that is best for you and what you most need.

Content | Top Productivity Books


The Magic of a Fresh Start


My Top Productivity Books for a Sustainable Lifestyle and Long-Term Success


Everything is Figureoutable by Marie Forleo


How Are You, Really? By Jenna Kutcher


Atomic Habits by James Clear


Feel Good Productivity by Ali Abdaal

James Clear Atomic Habits, Marie Forleo Everything is Figureoutable, Jenna Kutcher How Are You Really?

The Magic of a Fresh Start

The start of a new year is often the time when we all feel that extra spark of motivation to shake things up and make positive changes in our lives.

The past year’s ending might be just the needed urgency to want to make things different, better, or simply continue what we’ve already started with more dedication.

A year from now we want to be in a better place than today. Not again a year where we dreamed of changing things and didn’t follow through.

Changes that you have put off in the past year might be:

  • get in shape or losing weight
  • change your career
  • declutter your home
  • get your finances in check
  • start your dream business
  • learn something new
  • spend less time on social media
  • focus on relationships that are important to you
  • pay more attention to your health


While the start of a new year is a good excuse to make positive changes in our lives, I’m convinced that you can make those changes any time.

So: If you don’t read this article around the new year, know that you absolutely don’t need to wait for a new year, a new month, yes not even a new day to start. Telling yourself you need to wait is just another excuse – another day of procrastination that doesn’t serve you.

Simply start NOW!



It’s never a bad time to make positive changes to your life.


It’s never too late to start.


So whether it’s the start of the new year or any other spark of motivation that led you to this article:

Harness that enthusiasm and turn it into something meaningful.

Believe in yourself and keep going until you’ve reached your goal – you can do it!

My Top Productivity Books for a Sustainable Lifestyle and Long-Term Success

Whatever it is that you’re dreaming of, it’s worth listening to those feelings, urges, and voices in your head.

Take time to listen to your subconscious.

To identify your feelings.

To reflect on your thoughts, actions, and on the autopilot that gets you through your busy everyday life.


On the way to discovering how I can best leverage my energy to be as productive as possible, while at the same time creating a sustainable lifestyle, these books really helped me get into the right mindset.

There is too much hustle culture advice out there that gets you results fast. But even faster it leads you to drop those habits because you can’t keep up. Or worse, it drives you into burnout at some point.

That’s why I consider those books a healthy dose of motivation for change. And a sustainable way of going through life working towards your dreams and crushing your goals with more ease than ever.

The Mindset Reset

Everything is Figureoutable by Marie Forleo

This book is a beautiful reminder that a positive and constructive mindset will get you wherever you want to go in life.

We are trained to tell ourselves that we are just not as lucky, as intelligent, as hardworking, or good enough to reach our dreams. But with this book, Marie Forleo presses the reset button in our minds and empowers us to uncover the mindset needed to figure out anything we want.

While Everything is Figureoutable is not really a productivity book (it is classified under the broader category of self-help books), it beautifully goes hand-in-hand with all productivity books that follow.


It’s the foundation that you’re building everything else on, so to speak.

Marie Forleo Everything is Figureoutable Book
What the book teaches you

Everything is Figureoutable helps you reach your goals, whatever they are.

The title is the best summary of the mindset that Marie’s book describes: You can figure out anything in life. The only thing you need for that is the mindset – the belief – that you can.

The book goes through every common obstacle that can get in the way while you’re working towards your goals (or before you even take the first step) and teaches you the mindset needed to overcome it.

Everything is Figureoutable Book
How Everything is Figureoutable is structured

10 chapters get you from learning Marie’s mindset to reaching your goal.

The chapters are broken up by subtitles (sub-steps, instructions, and answers to any objection you might have), and inspirational quotes and highlighted messages break up the text blocks even more.

All in all, it’s a lot of information but very actionable and easy to read.

Inside almost every chapter, there is an Insight to Action Challenge, a practical exercise to take action towards your goals.

At the end of each chapter, there are Figureoutable Field Notes, true stories of people who applied Marie’s method.

Everything is Figureoutable Book table of contents
Who is Marie Forleo?

After a corporate career start, Marie Forleo followed her dream and became a dancer (sponsored by Nike) before she started her coaching business that eventually led to the empire she created up to this date: Marie is the host of Marie TV and the Marie Forleo Podcast, is speaking on large stages, a New York Times bestselling author, and has created online courses, all dedicated to helping people achieve their big dreams in life and overcome any challenge.

Marie truly is your biggest motivator on your journey, whatever you’re trying to achieve.

Who is Marie Forleo
My Take on Everything is Figureoutable

Everything is Figureoutable is a powerful mindset that anyone can adopt.

It will get you through literally anything in your life, as the testimonials illustrate in a powerful way – from getting out of an abusive relationship to getting through losing a loved one, or making your dream business come true. Really any life situation that can feel hard and overwhelming.

I love how Marie explains the background of why our brain works the way it works and then follows up with really practical tips and strategies to use those mechanisms to our advantage.

She takes all the excuses from you and shows you how to follow through and overcome the hardest life situation or achieve your wildest dreams, in a very easy-to-understand guide.

The examples are impressive and they are a constant drop of motivation; the belief “when this person could overcome their obstacles and reach their goal, so can I” starts to manifest in you as you read the book.

Marie Forleo Everything is Figureoutable page example
You should read this book if you…
  • Have big dreams or simply the urge to change something in your life
  • Have the tendency to be a perfectionist
  • Have a hard time finishing what you start
  • Struggle with self-worth
  • Are ready for change but need actionable tips (Ps: There is a whole online course by Marie that guides you through the full journey if you need extra support)LINK
  • Are good at finding reasons why something is too hard, not working, or not for you
  • Want to get inspired to keep (or get more of) a positive, actionable attitude toward life
Marie Forleo Book pages

Your Heart’s Compass

How Are You, Really? By Jenna Kutcher

The book you need if you find yourself navigating life on autopilot and want to create a truly fulfilled and good life for yourself.

Or if you know deep down in your heart that you’re not happy or fulfilled with your current life.

How Are You, Really? Invites you to reflect, dream big, and take action towards your dreams.

All with the author’s personal story weaved in in a beautiful and inspirational way.

Jenna Kutcher How Are You Really? Book

What the book teaches you

How Are You, Really? lets you deeply reflect on your current life and the desires and dreams that you have – or don’t even consciously know you have – to find your own answer to how success looks like for you.

The book lets you filter through other people’s and society’s opinions about your life and helps you hear your own voice and your personal desires.

Then, Jenna Kutcher leads you through coming up with a plan, and lastly, challenges you to take action toward making your dreams, desires, and goals a reality.

Jenna Kutcher Book

How How Are You, Really? is structured

The 19 short chapters are structured in 3 parts:

Part 1 Who You Are, Really? – teaches you how to honestly and deeply reflect. It’s all about getting still enough to sort through your busy and hectic life, feeling, and listening to your body, to define your own success.

Part 2Who You Have (And Who Has You)connects your inner reflections to the outside world and teaches how to share your dreams with your close circle, get accountability, navigate doubters, and ask for help.

Part 3What You’re Going To Do About It – gives you tools to start making actual changes in your life and tips on how to follow through. It both goes into creating actual results and staying aligned with your inner voice.

Through all the chapters, Jenna Kutcher walks us through the process and her personal story serves as an example.

How Are You Really? Book table of contents

Who is Jenna Kutcher

Jenna Kutcher is an online educator, social figure, and New York Times bestselling author.

She changed careers multiple times and today has an online empire all centered around helping women live the life of their dreams and giving them the right tools to reach them (Jenna Kutcher teaches courses around online content creation and hosts the Goal Digger Podcast).

She is proud to exactly be where the woo meets the work – combining the world of listening to your feelings and creating visions for yourself with the world of strategies and hustle.

Who is Jenna Kutcher

My Take on How Are You, Really?

This book is so well-balanced between an inspiring story (Jenna’s personal growth and career journey) and a self-help book, making you truly reflect on your own life and giving you tools to get after your goals and dreams.

I personally love Jenna’s “where the woo meets the work” mentality and find that she’s one of the only role models out there who look at shaping your path in a balanced and aligned way that creates a long-term sustainable business and life.

How Are You Really? Book page example

You should read this book if you…

  • Don’t know where to go in life
  • Are busy being busy but haven’t stopped to reflect in a while
  • Are not sure how to navigate other people’s opinions while staying true to yourself
  • Know exactly where to go but haven’t figured out how to make the transition, take action, etc.
  • Are searching for a way to reduce stress and find your own success
  • Have un-learned listening to your feelings and your body and are usually making decisions from a logical perspective
  • Are looking to learn from someone who masters crushing goals, achieving big things, and earning more than enough money while having the lifestyle of their dreams
  • Want to get inspired on how to create a truly sustainable lifestyle business
Jenna Kutcher Book Exercise

How to Make New Habits Stick

Atomic Habits by James Clear

Making Good Habits Inevitable And Bad Habits Impossible

Atomic Habits is one of the most important self-development books of our time.

The New York Times Bestseller is the needed antidote to the quick tips for success on social media.

Atomic Habits explains habit formation in a practical way, explains why bad habits repeat themselves, and gives us practical tools to create and implement healthy habits into our own lives.

James Clear Atomic Habits Book

What Atomic Habits Teaches You

James Clear’s framework in Atomic Habits helps us build good habits and build them into our lives for long-term success.

His philosophy is that if we get 1% better every day, we can achieve every goal we want (small habits that stack up to big results over time, through the compound interest of good daily habits).

This counters the idea of luck, talent, and even the importance of motivation, and puts you in power to achieve anything you prioritize, all with tiny behaviors in your daily life.


The book explains how habits are built and how to keep good habits long-term (founded on the most proven ideas from psychology and neuroscience).

It gives practical tips on how to take advantage of habit formation, with theory and lots of examples.

Clear also helps you find where you use the wrong system and helps you gear up with the right tools, based on simple behaviors, that will make success easier if applied correctly.

You will learn how to use the laws of habit formation in your daily life to break bad habits and create good habits that serve you.

Atomic Habits 1 percent rule

How the book is structured

The 20 short chapters in Atomic Habits are grouped into 6 parts:

  • The Fundamentals
  • The 1st Law: Make it Obvious
  • The 2nd Law: Make it Attractive
  • The 3rd Law: Make it Easy
  • The 4th Law: Make it Satisfying
  • Advanced Tactics: How to Go from Being Merely Good to Being Truly Great

Simple graphics and tables are spread throughout the book, and each chapter has a summary at the end.

Atomic Habits Book Table of Contents

Who is James Clear

James Clear started as a coach helping business leaders and athletes improve themselves.

He writes on productivity, self-improvement, continuous improvement, and connected topics (on his blog, in his newsletter, and in his book, Atomic Habits) and today, he is one of the world’s leading experts on habit formation who has spent years honing the practice of teaching people how to change their lives with small habits.

The guiding question behind all of Clear’s work is simple: “How can we live better?”

Who is James Clear

My Take on Atomic Habits

I’ve heard a lot about the book before I read it. Reading it myself, I finally understood the hype!

Atomic Habits is so incredibly straightforward, easy to understand, and practical.

The book is extremely quotable which is a testimony to Clear’s simple and clear writing style (what a fun coincidence his last name is!).


James Clear really is not only the master to distill complex topics but also reveals strategies on how to make things work on a practical level, in your own life, no matter where you are, what you’re going through, and what your goals are.

What I also loved about the book is that James Clear added some critical details that differentiate from popular advice around productivity and goal setting. For example, he explains why we will not stick to habits long-term if we rely mainly on motivation and offers alternatives which, from his experience coaching people to success, work better.

Lastly and very personally, as someone who has heard my whole life how effortlessly and easy I make it seem to succeed in life (while trying my best to explain people that whatever I achieved didn’t just come to me but is the result of constant hard work, dedication, and focus), I finally found explanations to what I might be intuitively doing differently than others.


So no matter if you’re crushing goals and following through with ease or if you’re someone who struggles to finish anything that you’ve started, this book will give you the needed answers.

James Clear Book Atomic Habits Example

You should read this book if you…

  • Want to make a change in your life and form good habits but need help how to do it
  • Have the goal of changing habits or break bad routines (for example quit smoking, lose weight, becoming more productive, or similar)
  • Are looking for practical advice, tips, and tools for productivity
  • Have trouble following through on things
  • Are interested in learning why some people just seem to crush their goals effortlessly
  • Want to read one of the most influential productivity books to date
  • Are a high achiever interested in learning to be even better / more efficient / more productive
  • Are committed to long-term success (rather than a quick fix)
Atomic Habits Book Mood

The Secret to Long-Term Success And Fulfillment

Feel Good Productivity by Ali Abdaal

This book will be published end of 2023. It’s beautifully in line with How Are You, Really? and Atomic Habits.

Feel Good Productivity looks at joy as the secret ingredient to productivity and long-term fulfillment.

Feel Good Productivity preview by Ali Abdaal
What Feel Good Productivity Teaches You

Feel Good Productivity is a guide to productivity. But NOT in the common way – become more productive to work more – but in a way that brings long-term fulfillment and a well-rounded life.

Ali Abdaal believes that if we find what truly fulfills us in life, we hold the key to both, great productivity while working, but also fulfillment and energy in the life outside of work.

The book helps you finding what brings you true joy in life, and gives you tools to build your personal system for productivity, reduce stress, and find alignment in everything you do (for work and your personal life).

How the book is structured

Feel Good Productivity is structured in 4 parts:

  • The Art & Science of Feel-Good Productivity: Ali’s personal journey from stressed with multiple jobs to finding his recipe to sustainable productivity.
  • Energise: How what energizes us helps us boost productivity.
  • Unblock: Strategies that help us staying focused and consistent over long time (so that we don’t have to rely on motivation and discipline).
  • Sustain: How we can shape a fulfilled and happy life in the long run.
Who is Ali Abdaal

Ali is a productivity expert. He started a YouTube channel, followed by a podcast, Deep Dive With Ali Abdaal, to share his tips on productivity, as he went through university to become a doctor.

Today, Ali is a full-time content creator and educator, teaching productivity and how to earn a living with content creation.

Who is Ali Abdaal
My Take on Feel Good Productivity

I’ll share my opinion as soon as I’ve read it, so stay tuned!

You should read this book if you…
  • Are fed up with hustle culture and are interested in a sustainable version of productivity
  • Want to find what truly fulfills you in life
  • Are looking how to reduce stress while still achieve big things
  • Need practical tools to get more productive, get more organized, and beat procrastination
Productivity books to inspire your start into the new year

These are my must-read productivity books for 2024, to invest in your future self. I hope you will find inspiration, guidance, and practical tips to get a step closer to reaching your goals and living a creatively fulfilled and well-rounded life!

PS: If you don’t like to read paper books, think about going for the Kindle edition or the audiobook instead.

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Top 4 Books to Start the New Year Productive and Inspired

Nov 4, 2023 | Product Reviews, My Productivity Secrets, PRODUCTIVITY

by Corinne

by Corinne

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