Communication is the key to all functioning relationships, whether in romance, friendship, or in the workplace. In a world that is ever more reflective and self-aware, a book about communication can be of great benefit, so we've brought together a list of ten exceptional guides to help out.
From old-school bestsellers to new releases, our picks will give you the skills to navigate marriage or life as a couple, become a better public speaker, and even develop into a more confident parent. Available on Amazon and eBay in paperback, eBook and Audible formats, we are convinced you'll love at least one of our suggestions.
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Table of Contents
Picking a communication book will depend on certain factors such as the area of life you want to work on, as well as your learning style. In this section we break down the decision to save you effort and time.
Firstly, decide what kind of communication book you're looking for. Will it be one you can use for one-to-one interactions or for addressing a larger audience? Most titles fall into one of these two categories, though some cover material applicable to both instances. Below we describe them in more detail.
Being something a lot of people find challenging, we've made sure to feature a couple of great examples of books which will allow you to speak more confidently in front of a crowd.
These can be beneficial not only for leaders who regularly have to give presentations, but are filled with ideas that could also be applicable to teachers of various kinds.
Many books in this genre focus on one-to-one communication, looking at personal relationships and how to convey feelings and ideas both in the moment and over a longer-term friendship or connection.
These skills will certainly be applicable to your career, just as public speaking is, but can also help improve interactions in your personal life such as with your parents, children or partner.
Next, decide on the area you want to focus on, or the 'who'. Do you have parenting issues, a difficult relationship or trouble making friends? Some books focus on specific types of relationship while others are more general. Decide whether you'd like to examine one particular area or hone skills that can be applied in every part of life.
As a parent it can sometimes be challenging to find the right words to use with your kids, so a good book with plenty of advice specific to parenthood might be just what you need.
We've included books which are appropriate for family use and look specifically at the parent-child dynamic, although they may also be useful for school teachers or those who work with or care for young people.
Communication is literally vital in a loving relationship. While we often think we are saying what we mean, a book focused on sharing our thoughts with clarity can take a marriage or partnership from strong to spectacular.
Look out for the relationship books among our picks if love and connection is your focus.
Many communication books, including several we have selected, contain advice that is totally applicable to your career or business.
These titles focus on your ability to talk to strangers, strike up comfortable conversation, 'network' and make solid, lasting connections with other business owners or possible employers.
Whether you are crippled by shyness in social spaces or simply realising the importance of a deep-dive into communication to improve your relationships and life, a more generalised look at communication could be beneficial.
Some of our recommendations take a broader look at communication; examining your personal mindset, body language and tone. Picking one of these books gives you a more general understanding of human relationships.
If you want to save on space or simply prefer the portability of digital formats, look out for your chosen book in an eReader version. Though this means additional screen time, which is off-putting for some, it gives you the opportunity to easily transport multiple titles.
Another great option is an audiobook version, particularly if the book was written by a well-known thinker as some on our list are. Having the words read aloud passionately by the author often helps you feel more inspired, but do listen to the sample first as some authors write fantastically but speak with less pizazz.
The other benefit of an audiobook is of course the practicality; you can wash up, drive, or work out while you listen.
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Marshall B. Rosenberg
Collaborate Compassionately With Anyone, Anywhere
Surrounded by Idiots: The Four Types of Human Behaviour
The International Bestseller Helping Us Communicate Based on Behaviour
Bento C. Leal III
4 Essential Keys to Effective Communication
A Quartet of Simple Skills Which Could Improve Your Life, Work and Marriage
Talk Like TED: The 9 Public Speaking Secrets of the World's Top Minds
Become a Bold Public Speaker Worthy of the TED Stage
Alain de Boton and The School of Life
The School of Life: An Emotional Education
Attain Genuine Emotional Maturity
Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish
How To Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk
Strategies for Communicating With Under Sevens
How to Win Friends and Influence People
A World-Famous Guide to Building and Preserving Relationships
A Book to Dispel the Myth of Vulnerability as a Weakness
How to Own the Room: Women and the Art of Public Speaking
Public Speaking from a Woman's Perspective
How to Talk to Anyone: 92 Little Tricks for Big Sucess
Perfect Your People Skills in Personal and Business Relationships
This book focuses on the importance of words to help us enjoy harmonious relationships with everyone around us. It looks at the idea that 'violence' can be more insidious than punching and smashing, rather sometimes simply referring to judgement, discrimination, bias and criticism.
In his popular guide to forming better habits for communicating our thoughts and needs to others, Marshall Rosenberg posits that we should be finding ways of sharing our power with others rather than aiming to hold it over them. He promotes emotional, empathetic connections and the importance of sharing our knowledge and resources with our peers too.
This book is an excellent read if you want to work out the best way to communicate with family members, colleagues and friends whose behaviour patterns you find hard to navigate. A bestseller first in Sweden and now worldwide, the book clearly breaks down four personality types and explains how best to interact with each.
With detailed descriptions of the 'red', 'green', 'yellow' and 'blue' types, plus their respective attitudes, this book hits the communication nail on the head by highlighting the issues a one-size-fits-all approach can have on teamwork, relationships and family dynamics. Fascinating and applicable to our daily lives.
This book centres around the four pillars of good communication and aims to help you overcome the barriers that are holding you back from healthy relationships with children and parents, colleagues, partners, clients and friends. The tasks for self-reflection make it interactive and fun.
Just as much a long-term project as it is a riveting read, this book will encourage you to listen openly and effectively, keep nurturing relationships over time and deal with conflict using a peaceful approach rather than in pain or anger.
Everyone loves a good TED talk, and apart from the fact the ideas discussed truly are – as the slogan goes – worth spreading, the public speaking techniques used are also invaluable.
This book introduces the reader to a range of 9 clever techniques used by many of the activists, scientists, authors and thinkers who have spoken on the famous TED stage. You'll overcome your fears and be inspired to talk before groups however small or large.
If you haven't yet discovered Alain de Boton's international project The School of Life, which has online resources on self-discovery as well as book stores and workshops across the globe, now is the time to research it! A loving deep-dive into emotion that feels like a chat with your wisest friend.
Though it was compiled by his team at The School of Life, with only the introduction written by the philosopher himself, De Boton's calm, considered tones seem to echo throughout this book, which is chock-full of fascinating ideas on why we behave the way we do and how we can more clearly express our needs and wishes in love, work and friendship.
A new perspective on communicating with children, this book was put together by two education experts, Adele Faber and Elaine Malish, and was first published in 1982. It became an international bestseller and is still a top pick with parents today because of its no-nonsense approach.
So often we repeat the mistakes our parents made due to a lack of clarity in our communication. We say one thing and mean another. This book hands parents the tools to get their message across with love, respect and understanding, avoiding aggression (passive or not) and promoting a healthy attitude to asking for what we need.
If you haven't read this book, you've almost certainly heard of it. This book is aimed at building self-confidence, honing your social skills and the art of conversation, as well as the ability to address an audience. Building a sense of autonomy and assertiveness is paramount in each chapter.
More than 16 million copies of this book have been sold worldwide, with many readers claiming it has altered their thought processes and thus their lives. Though the title sounds perhaps a tad manipulative to our sensitive contemporary ears, this book is actually about building and preserving strong relationships, with both customers and friends.
Everyone's favourite visionary-slash-self-help-guru Dr Brené Brown is a powerhouse in the field of spiritual self-discovery. This book (recently transformed into a Netflix series named The Call to Courage) is written in praise of becoming more open about our flaws and vulnerabilities.
Daring Greatly showcases the results of twelve years' research into relationships, work and home life, where Dr Brené believes she's found the key to courage; and that is clearly communicating our own vulnerability and embracing it.
This bold and funny guide to public speaking has received extremely high praise from consumer reviewers and critics alike. Written by British journalist and comedian Viv Groskop, it's packed with tongue-in-cheek insights into the self-doubt and imposter syndrome women in the public eye face.
Examining the public addresses of formidable women such as Michelle Obama, Oprah Winfrey and Virginia Woolf, this is a book which will grant you the power to speak boldly to audiences and even bring those skills into your everyday life. A hardcover confidence boost you'll be lending to friends and quoting from forever more.
What we particularly like about this handy little book is the fact it's seriously lighthearted, witty and whimsical, while still packing in countless ideas for conversing and connecting (well, not countless, there are 92!)
For some of us it can be hard to relax in conversation with strangers, with a fear of silence or disagreement meaning we nod uncontrollably or ramble to hide our nerves. This book offers key words to help guide the chat in a comfortable direction, body language tips and importantly, advice on not letting things get too serious!
Here at mybest we love to introduce you to fun, informative and – yes, we are going to say it – life-changing books. Often something as simple as a powerful quote or fascinating chapter can properly shape the way you see the world and act within it. Click the links below to discover some entertaining and eye-opening reads.
That's that then. We're pretty proud of our selection, and we hope you like them too! Here's to speaking concisely and openly about our feelings, and helping others understand our views with kindness and consideration. We could all do with a bigger dose of clarity in our lives, and these books take a healthy step towards that!
Author: Annie Hopkins
No. 1: Marshall B. Rosenberg | Nonviolent Communication
No. 2: Thomas Erikson | Surrounded by Idiots: The Four Types of Human Behaviour
No. 3: Bento C. Leal III | 4 Essential Keys to Effective Communication
No. 4: Carmine Gallo | Talk Like TED: The 9 Public Speaking Secrets of the World's Top Minds
No. 5: Alain de Boton and The School of Life | The School of Life: An Emotional Education
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