Skip to main content

NewFolks may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.

The 5 best motivational books for teens you can get for $15 or less

Raising a teen is no easy feat. And helping them become a strong, empowered, and driven citizen of the world is not for the faint of heart. Fortunately, you are not entirely on your own. Some wise words, sage advice, and expert tips can help them grow into fierce and flexible individuals with bold opinions, open hearts, and enthusiastic minds. Of course, to unleash this potential you will first have to convince your adolescent kiddo to pick up a book. Think you are up for the challenge? Think they are ready for the encouragement? We’ve rounded up the best motivational books for teens that can inspire creativity, spark gratitude, and foster confidence.

You Don’t Have to Learn Everything the Hard Way, by Laya Saul

Author Layla Saul wants to be the “aunt” teens turn to with questions they don’t necessarily want to ask their parents. And the topics in this book are certainly not tame or subtle or coded. Rather, Saul approaches tough territory, giving teenagers the tools to face issues like sex, abuse, drugs, peer pressure, and more. This is a great option to read with your kid — or, you know, together, but individually. Saul helps teens find simple but effective tactics and empowers them with digestible nuggets of worldly knowledge.

Live Fearless: A Call to Power, Passion, and Purpose, by Sadie Robertson

The author, a Dancing with the Stars alumnus, identifies with the struggles young people face today. She knows they can feel insignificant or even invisible — and, so, through her writing, she strives to help readers put aside self-doubt and embrace joy, connection, and acceptance. Teens who love this book will also enjoy her follow-up, Live: Remain Alive, Be Alive at a Specified Time, Have an Exciting or Fulfilling Life. It is worth noting that there are some religious undertones; Robertson elaborates on her strong faith and Christianity and takes the stance that God creates each individual to be uniquely themselves. 

The Ultimate Self-Esteem Workbook for Teens, by Megan MacCutcheon

Nobody said being a teen is easy. Navigating relationships, overcoming self-esteem issues, and managing the highs and lows of high school (oof) are par for the tumultuous course. This book can help young people plot out their paths and workshop their feelings through activities, anecdotes, and other practical prompts. If your teen is not an enthusiastic reader per se, this option is both interactive and engaging.

Brave: A Teen Girl’s Guide to Beating Worry and Anxiety, by Sissy Goff

Anxiety and adolescence often go hand in hand. But that does not mean that teenage girls should have to learn to live with that doubting voice in their heads. This book — chock-full of practical nuggets and useful tactics — can help young women identify self-criticism and worry, then see their situation in a different, better, and more forgiving light. (Couldn’t we all benefit from that kind of clarity and kindness?)

A Year of Positive Thinking for Teens, by Katie Hurley

Don’t think you can get your teenager to read a whole self-help book? How about one that breaks down motivation into digestible daily tidbits? Rather than overwhelm them with a wealth of advice, this option offers day-by-day pockets of practical wisdom that youngsters can apply to their day, their week, their month, and then the whole year ahead. Loaded with quotes and affirmative messaging, this book helps teenagers find self-improvement in a cumulative and approachable way.

Whether you want to be proactive in your parenting approach, or need to find inspiring and practical guidance for a young person who is struggling, these self-help books for teens may be able to help. Read them together or separately, and let them be a jumping-off point for conversation. It certainly is not easy being an adolescent in today’s pressure-filled world, and, while your love and acceptance is the most important thing you can offer a child, these books can give you both new tools and savvy tips to change your perspective and motivate positive change.

Editors' Recommendations

Lauren Barth
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Lauren Barth is a freelance writer and digital editor with over a decade of experience creating lifestyle, parenting, travel…
13 amazing books that celebrate Black culture to add to your kid’s library this Juneteenth
Add these books to your cart to celebrate Juneteenth this month
A mother reading her young child a bedtime story.

When it comes to celebrating Juneteenth with your family and children, it can quickly get overwhelming. First, the newly cemented holiday remains a new historical fact for a lot of people. Some people look at it as a time to promote diversity, while others look at it as a time to celebrate freedom for all. Regardless, it's important to always focus on the history of Black Americans, particularly Texans, for this holiday.

Juneteenth should serve as a remembrance for Americans. President Lincoln wrote the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863, declaring that all enslaved people should be free. Even though slavery was abolished on January 31, 1865, enslaved Black Americans in the state of Texas didn't know they were free until June. 19, 1865. Thousands of soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas, and it was there they were met by enslaved people. They told them that they were all free. Even though that day would mark almost two years after slavery was abolished, Black Texans celebrated their freedom. Now known as Black Independence Day, Juneteenth serves as a reminder that freedom and equality are human rights that everyone deserves.

Read more
5 best books for expecting dads that every first-time father should read
Read these books if you are soon to be a newbie dad
A dad reading to baby in mom's belly.

Don't know what to expect when you're going to be a first-time dad? You're not alone. A lot of dads-to-be experience the same feelings. Getting a positive pregnancy test can be just as intimidating, overwhelming, exciting, and nerve wracking for first-time fathers as it is for newbie mamas. While nine months may sound like a sufficient chunk of time to plan and prepare for a baby, the time goes by pretty quickly.

Want to make sure you're setting yourself and your growing family up for success? Fatherhood doesn't exactly come with a roadmap. Being a good dad starts with empathy and education. So, pull up a chair and get out a great book on the subject of being a new father. It's time to learn all about the incredible adventure that is parenting. We've rounded up the best books for expecting dads. It's time to learn what to expect when you're about to be a first-time father.
Best books for expecting dads
Pregnancy books aren't just for moms-to-be. There are actually quite a few titles aimed at expecting dads. With so many titles at your fingertips, though, it can be difficult for an anxious father-to-be to choose the right ones. To help, we've got your go-to list for the top reads for fathers-to-be should have on their nightstand.
We're Pregnant! The First Time Dad's Pregnancy Handbook
The mom may be the one who is pregnant, but soon-to-be fathers also go through a transformation of sorts. This handbook for fathers encourages dads to participate in their partner's pregnancy and take an active role as a dad from day one. It covers how to help with the woes of pregnancy, how to have input on creating a birth plan, and how to create a parenting style that works for your expanding family. This first-time dad book is a must-have for nervous newbies.

Read more
Why your teen should get a summer job right now
Benefits of summer jobs for teens and some employment ideas
Newspaper advertising summer jobs for teens

Summertime is right around the corner. It won't take long before your teenager is bored, moody, unmotivated, and dare we say, a tad bit lazy. On the other side of the coin, perhaps your teen is the too-cool-for-summer type who wants to socialize all day, every day, heading to the mall, beach, pool, or with friends until it's curfew time.

Certainly, the summer is your adolescent's chance to relax, recharge, and enjoy some time off after a challenging school year. Summer doesn't mean teens are exempt from all responsibility, though. Spring is the ideal time to encourage your teen to start looking for a summer job.

Read more