10 Key Books To Read Now That You’re Out of College (And Incredibly Unemployed)
The good news is: you graduated from college. The bad news is: you don’t have a job (yet). Before you get too comfortable living in your parents’ basement and selling your action figure collection on eBay, invest in your future with the old-fashioned art of reading. Unlike those dull textbooks you had to plod through in your college days, these books will motivate, enlighten, and inspire you to take hold of your professional life and capitalize on your potential. What happens next is up to you.
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'Assume the Worst: The Graduation Speech You’ll Never Hear' by Carl Hiaasen
In this hilarious faux graduation speech illustrated by Roz Chast, Carl Hiaasen shares practical tips, astute observations, and thought-provoking truths about life. Despite the title, the book is ultimately optimistic about the future.
'This is Water' by David Foster Wallace
David Foster Wallace made an infamous graduation speech at Kenyon College in 2005. It was the only commencement address he ever gave before his untimely death in 2008. The speech, gathered as a slim book, will knock you flat on your ass while simultaneously inspiring you to go out and grab life by the balls. If you only read one book on this list, this is it.
'Make Your Bed' by William McRaven
Another commencement-speech-turned-book, this one’s by Admiral William H. McRaven, who applies 10 lessons he learned during Navy SEAL training to everyday life. If you need a little discipline and a pep talk, this book’s for you.
'You are a Badass at Making Money' by Jen Sincero
Money can be a scary thing when you aren’t making enough of it (or any of it). But you can’t manage what you don’t confront, and that’s why you need this book. Jen Sincero will teach you how to shift your mindset and tap into the innate abundance accessible to us all.
'Adulting: How to Become a Grown-up' by Kelly Williams Brown
Not all your reading has to be serious business. Have a few laughs with someone who’s figured out how to navigate cooking, chores, work, and money matters as a newly minted adult so you don’t have to.
'Never Eat Alone' by Keith Ferrazzi
Relationship-building is an essential skill for professional success. But rather than “networking,” Keith Ferrazzi prefers “connecting,” and he’ll show you how to do just that – in person and on social media – through simple, actionable concepts.
'How to Win Friends & Influence People' by Dale Carnegie
A big part of success depends on other people liking you. In this timeless classic, you’ll learn how to charm your coworkers and give criticism, kindly.
'The Defining Decade' by Meg Jay
If you thought your 20s were for hedonistic pursuits, clinical psychologist Meg Jay has a wake-up call for you. She argues that this decade sets the foundation for the rest of your life, so you shouldn’t take your youth for granted. This is a literary kick in the rear.
'The Gifts of Imperfection' by Brene Brown
Brene Brown is your literary life coach, and in this bestselling book, she wants you to know that you’re wonderful just the way you are. Cast off your self-doubt, increase your self-worth, and learn how to live authentically.
'Let Your Life Speak' by Parker J. Palmer
For those who believe that the work you do should be your calling, not just your job, Parker J. Palmer offers wise counsel about how to listen to your soul and embrace the life that is meant for you, not the one you think you should have.