Courage is a funny thing.
Some people seem to be born with it, whereas others cannot roll up their sleeves when it matters.
If that sounds like you – don’t worry!
The good news is that courage can be developed.
And what better way to inspire courage than by reading a book?
This article will review the 10 best books about courage for adults.
However, I want to make something crystal clear:
These empowering books are the first step. But you still need to go out into the world and implement the tips in your own life.
Let’s get into it.
Not all the listings below are ‘how-to’ books.
Some of them are autobiographies where the main character overcame adversity by showing courage.
Others are complete fiction.
However, each book inspires courage in one way or another.
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If you don’t know who David Goggins is, then it’s time to crawl out from the rock you’ve been living under.
He is the definition of courage.
And the good news is that you can learn from him.
Can’t Hurt Me is an autobiography about David Goggins. And trust me – it’s not pretty.
From dealing with extreme racism to going through soul-crushing Navy seal training – this man has done it all.
My main takeaway from this book is that no matter how bad your circumstances, they can be overcome.
Also, self-hate and pain can be used as a tool. All the times you’ve been through hardship can be used to push you further.
David Goggins refers to this as his ‘cookie jar’.
Every time he is in pain and needs motivation, he thinks of all the pain, hardship, and achievements.
In addition, if you choose the audiobook, it also doubles up as a podcast. After every chapter, David Goggins breaks everything down and explains how to use the lessons yourself.
“It’s a lot more than mind over matter. It takes relentless self-discipline to schedule suffering into your day, every day.”
The Courage to Be Disliked is a book by Japanese author and speaker, Ichiro Kishimi.
He argues that we do not need to be liked by others to be happy, but only need to be authentic and true to ourselves.
Kishimi also discusses the importance of taking responsibility for our own happiness, rather than relying on others to make us happy.
Overall, I thought The Courage to Be Disliked was an interesting read. It was motivating to see how much control we have over our own happiness.
I would recommend this book if you worry about what other people think.
It’s a real eye-opener.
“We do not lack ability. We just lack courage. It all comes down to courage.”
Let’s be honest.
In a world filled with people caring too much…
Not giving a f*ck takes courage.
And what better way to learn the art than by reading a book about it.
The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck is a self-help book written by Mark Manson. The book is about how to live a good life by not caring about things that don’t matter.
Manson argues that people care too much about things that don’t matter, such as their reputation, social status, and material possessions.
He believes that these things do not lead to happiness, and that people should instead focus on living a good life overcoming adversity while caring about fewer things.
You guessed it – courage.
The book has been praised for its honest and relatable advice.
“The more something threatens your identity, the more you will try to avoid it.”
The Alchemist is a novel by Paulo Coelho that tells the story of an Andalusian shepherd boy named Santiago who becomes a mystic after traveling to Egypt.
Santiago’s journey teaches him about the universal language of love and the power of following one’s dreams.
The novel begins with Santiago in Andalusia, Spain as an adolescent. He watches his flock of sheep and dreams of traveling to the pyramids in Egypt.
One night, a Gypsy woman approaches him and offers to tell him his fortune. She tells him that there is a treasure hidden in the Pyramids and that he needs to search for it.
Santiago’s father disapproves of his son’s interest in personal wealth and ultimately sends him off to a life of herding sheep.
However, Santiago follows his calling and travels to Tangier with a man who promises to teach him about alchemy.
And that’s where courage comes in.
If you want to do anything exceptional, you can’t count on family and friends.
They probably can’t see your vision. You need to have enough courage to still follow your heart, as Santiago did in The Alchemist.
“There is only 1 way to learn. It’s through action”
If you want to learn about courage, you need to learn from the best.
And Navy Seals top the list.
In “Mastering Fear: The Navy SEALs Guide”, author Brandon Webb reveals the tactics and techniques used by the United States Navy’s elite SEAL Team Six to overcome fear and achieve success in any situation.
Drawing on his own experiences as a SEAL sniper and team leader, Webb provides step-by-step instructions on identifying fear, understanding its effects, and ultimately overcoming it.
He offers advice on everything from visualization exercises to mental conditioning. You also get real-world examples of how SEALs have used these methods to achieve extraordinary results.
This book may seem far-fetched from your reality.
After all, you’re probably not training to be a Navy Seal. However, the lessons derived from this book can be used in your day-to-day life.
“If something scares me, it means there is magic on the other side.”
Read Also: Can Courage Exist Without Fear?
6. Man’s Search For Meaning
Sometimes, you need to hear about other people’s experiences to inspire courage.
This puts things into perspective.
And also shows you that your problems are not that bad.
The book, “Man’s search for meaning”, is about the author’s experiences in a concentration camp during World War II.
He discusses how he could find meaning in his life even in the darkest of times.
The book is compelling and moving. It is an excellent read for anyone looking for a way to find meaning in their life, despite the difficulties they may be facing.
“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves”
The Lord of the Rings tells the story of Frodo Baggins, a hobbit who is chosen to carry the One Ring to Mount Doom so that it may be destroyed and thus save Middle-earth from the Dark Lord Sauron.
Accompanied by his friends Sam, Merry, Pippin, and the wizard Gandalf, Frodo sets out on a perilous journey across Middle-earth.
Along the way, they are beset by danger at every turn, including Orcs, giant spiders, and Shelob the spider queen.
Although it’s a fictional book, it still has fundamental lessons about courage.
As you progress through the book, you see a big transformation in Frodo. This comes from overcoming challenges and hardship.
The same applies to human beings.
When you overcome what you perceived to be impossible, you change in the process.
“Even the smallest person can change the course of history”.
The Fear Bubble is written by Ant Middleton, a SAS soldier who has experienced first-hand the effects of fear and how it can be debilitating.
The book is a guide to help individuals understand and overcome fear, using real-life examples and tactics that have helped Ant himself.
Ant begins the book by discussing the different types of fear, from everyday fears such as spiders and public speaking, to more serious fears related to our safety or our perception of danger.
He then explains why fear can be so powerful and how it can take over our lives if we let it.
“Fear is a magic shrinking potion. If you don’t learn to harness it, it will make you smaller and smaller and smaller.”
In “The Relentless,” Tim Grover offers a unique and powerful approach to achieving success in any field.
Drawing on his decades of experience working with the world’s top athletes, Grover reveals that the key to reaching the pinnacle of any endeavor is to embrace a relentless mindset.
This means maintaining absolute focus on one’s goals, refusing to give up in the face of setbacks, and relentlessly pursuing excellence no matter the cost.
Through a series of fascinating case studies, Grover shows how embracing relentless principles can allow anyone to overcome challenges and achieve greatness.
He shares insights into the mindsets and training methods of Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, and other iconic athletes, revealing how they could push themselves beyond their limits and achieve the impossible.
“Do. The. Work. Every day, you have to do something you don’t want to do. Every day. Challenge yourself to be uncomfortable, push past the apathy and laziness and fear.”
Leaving your comfort zone requires courage.
And sometimes you need to draw inspiration from a book to get the ball rolling.
If I had to choose one book from this list – It would be Can’t Hurt Me, by David Goggins. It provides many real-life examples where courage was required.
Not only that, but Goggins talks about the life lessons he learned along the way.
Get this book if you want to feel pumped up, motivated, and courageous!