The best books for freelancers can save you thousands of dollars and hours. The best way to get started as a freelancer is to learn from the best that have already been down the road you are about to travel (or are already traveling). We have put together a list of what we consider to be essential reading for anyone considering or already moving along with their freelance career.
It should go without saying, but we will say it anyway, reading these books (or any other book for that matter) will not do you any good unless you put what you learn into practice.
We hear from freelancers all the time that get stuck in the learning phase of their freelance career by reading all of the books they can get their hands on, taking a ton of online courses, and consuming YouTube tutorials for hours each day but are not actually putting in the work.
Learning is essential, but it can also become a form of procrastination and as soon as you recognize yourself choosing to learn rather than get work done that you know needs to be done, you should take a break from the books and get to work.
With that said, when you are in learn mode and ready to start absorbing useful insights that could potentially save you money, time, and headaches, here are the books we recommend you dig into. These are in no particular order as you will see, pick em up, and dig in asap.
The 4 Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss
The 4 Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss has become a timeless addition to any entrepreneurs library and is essential reading for anyone wanting to escape the 9 to 5 and live on their terms. The book not only provides practical advice, but it also digs into the details of how to build a sustainable lifestyle business that you can be proud of.
Although they are not listed here, Tim Ferriss’s other books and even his podcast are a must for anyone wanting to build a freelance career. The guidance and advice Tim provides can help you achieve more in less time, get super productive, and build a dream freelance career.
Buy The 4 Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss on Amazon.
The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg
The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg will provide you with an essential roadmap for becoming a successful freelancer, and quite honestly, a successful human. We are a result of our habits, what we do day in and day out will define the quality of our lives, and without good habits, you are setting yourself up for disaster.
In the book, Charles Duhigg digs into just how powerful habits can be in determining our health, wealth, and happiness, and digs into the essential elements that make up the development and cultivation of good habits. You will walk away from this one ready and willing to build better habits to become the best version of yourself. Which you will need to be in order to succeed on this freelancing journey.
Buy The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business on Amazon.
Getting Things Done by David Allen
Many consider Getting Things Done by David Allen to be one of the most important books you can read when it comes to productivity. We would agree with this completely.
Getting Things Done helps walk you through the process of getting everything in your life and business organized in a way that allows you to approach productivity in a stress-free way, which as it turns out, will actually make you more productive.
David Allen will guide you in taking everything in your head and getting it out, organizing everything, and creating systems and an action plan to tackle everything on your list. We cannot stress enough, just how important this book is. Although it is number 3 on the list, we actually recommend reading it first.
Buy Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity on Amazon
The Personal MBA by Josh Kaufman
Although the Personal MBA by Josh Kaufman was written for people wanting to build larger business and less for those pursuing freelance careers, we consider it essential reading because the principles outlined here apply to businesses of all sizes.
You will also be quite surprised how much of an advantage you will have over your competition as a freelancer when you know and apply business principles that are often overlooked in the freelancing space. We consider this one of the best books for freelancers because it will give you an unfair advantage over others competing for the same business.
Buy The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business on Amazon
The War of Art by Stephen Pressfield
After reading The War of Art by Stephen Pressfield you will likely think we did in fact save the best for last. This book is not necessarily full of tips, tricks, guides, and checklists, rather it is full of some of the most inspirational content you will find anywhere.
What Stephen Pressfield has done in this amazing book is to provide you will the battle cry you will inevitably need when you are starting to feel defeated, burned out, stressed out, and ready to throw in the towel.
Ultimately, he defines the enemy, and it is you. When you set out as a freelancer to build your own business, you will quickly realize that the doubt and insecurity is waiting for you around every turn. This is on top of the everyday hurdles you will face externally.
This book will be a fountain of inspiration that never stops running. If you don’t think you need this kind of book right now, trust that you will soon enough. You had better stock your shelf with this one, for when the doubt-filled days come because they will.
This was not meant to discourage, on the contrary, to encourage you to step up while building yourself and your freelance career. You’ve got this, we have your back, and so does Stephen. :)
Buy The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles on Amazon
Well, there you have it, a list of the best books for freelancers. The list is great for those of you just getting started, but if you have been going at it for years and want to take your freelance career to the next level, these books are for you too.
If you have any books you think we should add to the list tweet us and let us know what books changed the game for you in your freelancing.
***All of the links listed above for the books are Amazon Affiliate links and the School For Freelancers receives a small percentage of each sale. We hope you find our content valuable enough to justify our small kick-back on the sale :).