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A life full of meaning and little moments of joy day to day can make all the difference in contributing to the quality of our lives. Sounds desirous? Familiar? Stay with me and read on for the next 5 minutes.


Writer Annie Dillard famously said,“How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.” Interesting for over 4 billion people around the world, a large portion of our days is spent at work; in fact, According to fact slide, the average person will spend 90,000 hours at work over a lifetime (without considering work commute in traffic and overtime!)

So it is only common sense that we become more intentional about the work we do, our relationship with it and more important than anything how it affects our sense of purpose and fulfilment at every stage of our career. 


Whether you are fresh out of college, been working for a while; about to go on a midlife retirement just or even just going to college or drop out of school; here are 5 books that can help you find more meaning and alignment with your purpose in your career and life. The first two are general life purpose guidebooks while the rest are specifically focused on helping you find more purpose in your career. Let’s dive in:   


  1.  The School of Greatness by Lewis Howes

Stemmed from tips, habits and life lessons learnt from interviewing some of the world’s greatest minds, on the Authors renown podcast, The School of Greatness, this book dives deep to share real-life a practical guide to living bigger, loving deeper and leaving a legacy. In this book, the author will take you on a journey to help you discover and align your life with your vision, your work with your purpose and develop the winning mindset as well as habits required to live your life to the fullest! You can grab a copy here and subscribe to his podcast too. 


  1. Think like a monk by Jay Shetty

This book focuses on empowering the reader with practical tips they can take every day to live a less anxious, more meaningful life. The Author, Jay Shetty, combines ancient wisdom and his own rich experiences in the ashram,  Think Like a Monk reveals how to overcome negative thoughts and habits, and access the calm and purpose that lie within all of us every day.


  1. 48 days to the work you love by Dan Miller 

The author Dan Miller grew up in the Mennonite community, where he found the mindset of this community to be limiting. He became a Psychologist and in this book, he takes the reader through a process of self-discovery and then into the work definition then a  job search process that is applicable for any job type to find great success.


The book is not so much about finding a new job as it is learning about who we are really called to be in relation to our vocation-whatever shape that career may take in this new normal. 

It takes readers on a conversational and creative journey to helps the reader understand one’s Godgiven skills and abilities, personality traits, values, dreams, and passions. By reading this book, you will start recognizing recurring theme and clear patterns that will point toward successful decisions along the career path. Step by step, this updated edition of 48 Days to the Work You Love reveals the process for creating a Life where you do meaningful and fulfilling daily work. You can download a free pdf here or better still buy a book here

  1. The Art of Work: A proven Path to discover the work you were meant to do by Jeff Goins 

Are you tired of hearing the popular ‘everything will be OK if you just need to think and plan it out” by the many gurus of self-care and career counselling? Do you want brutally honest self- help books that will inspire you to stay true in your pursuit of discovering and doing the work that’s most meaningful to you? If yes, Then I invite you to take a journey with the Author Jeff Goins as he shares his stories and the stories of other people who experienced twists, turns, and surprises in their pursuits to find their calling and do work that matters.

The Author  Jeff Goins explains, our search for discovering the work we were born to do begins with passion but does not end there. He goes further to show that only when our interests connect with the needs of the world do we begin living for a larger purpose and that those who experience this intersection experience something incredibly rare and enviable. Though it is exceptional, as Jeff discovered along the journey he shares in this one-of-a-kind book, such a life is attainable by anyone brave enough to try. Google reads describes further, that through personal experience, compelling case studies, and current research on the mysteries of motivation and talent, Jeff shows readers how to find the vocation they were meant for and what to expect during the long, arduous journey to discovering and pursuing it. Grab your copy here 

  1. Do the Work by Steven Pressfield 

Have you started a project but never finished? Would you love to do work that matters, but don’t know where to start? The answer is Do the Work. In this classic by the best selling author of both fiction (The Legend of Bagger Vance) and non-fiction (The War of Art), Steven Pressfield, he takes us through why we fail to live out our potential and how to take steps in living out that potential. He debunks the myth about living a phenomenal work life and doing that which you imagine that may not even exist yet! If you have ever held back, felt doubt or simply been paralyzed by overthinking living out your best work-life, this book Do The Work is for you. Grab a copy here

  1. Start: Punch Fear in the Face, Escape Average and Do Work that Matters 


“Do you think being average is an act of humility? An act of consideration for others or perhaps pursuing your dream is selfish? News flash it is absolutely not!’’

This book by Jon Acuff, in the follow up to his bestseller Quitter, in it he takes the reader through the five stages of success, a roadmap that has been followed for over 100 years. He contends Baby Boomers have been lulled into false security and he raises our awareness in speeding up the 5 stages and reaching “awesome” sooner than staying on the traditional path that is just average. So if you are someone who doesn’t just want to be comfortable but awesome, and is ready to take the more challenging path because things like fear only bother you when you do work that matters. Then be sure to grab a copy here or take a walk to your local bookstore; you decide! It’s time to punch fear in the face, escape average, and do work that matters.


  1. The Seed: Finding Purpose and Happiness in Life and Work

“Don’t seek happiness. Decide to work with passion and purpose and happiness will find you.” – Jon Gordon 

The Seed takes you on a journey of finding the meaning and passion behind work. The book highlights the story of Josh, an up-and-comer at the author’s company, who has been unengaged with his job. Challenged by his boss to take two weeks to decide if he really wants to work there, Josh takes off for the country, where he meets a wise farmer who gives him a seed and a promise: find the right place to plant the seed, and his purpose will be revealed. 

Irrespective of your profession, you’ll find surprising new sources of wisdom and inspiration to plan the seed needed for growth in your life and business! This is the type of book that you read on a cosy weekend afternoon with your tea, coffee, smoothies or small chops whatever works for you. Grap a copy here


  1. The Life You Were Born to Live: A Guide to Finding Your Life Purpose by Dan Millman 

Dan Millman presents an entirely new way of understanding life and the forces that shape it. The Life-Purpose System, The Life-Purpose System explores key spiritual laws — universal principles specific to each life path — that help you clarify the past, understand the present, and shape the future. It can generate a quantum leap in self-understanding and may even change the course of your life. I am yet to read this one but fascinated about the perspective it brings. This ancient wisdom epicentre can be purchased here or you can get the revised 25th-anniversary edition here


  1. What Color is your parachute by Dick Bolles 

Last but certainly not the least, this book for starter job seekers which was self-published first in 1970 by the Author Dick Bolles. This job seekers classic has since 1975 been updated every year. Considered by many as the original guide to finding work, it’s a great place to start your search. The key message debunks the scarcity of jobs myth and empowers its readers to rethink their approach to job searching. 

Get a glimpse through this book review by Richard N Bolles here 



There you the 9 books that can help you find your purpose, start living life and doing the work that matters the most to you. I hope that you continue to find time to read and invest in your personal growth. My prayer for you is that you find joy and meaning in your life and do work that lights up your heart every day!


Take a moment to share your thoughts in the comments below! I would love to hear where you in your journey of finding or doing work that matters the most to you. Also, tell me have you read any of these books? What was your major take away? If not, which one of these are you going to grab a copy of next?

Africans Living Fully

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