The best comprehensive retirement books that will make you successful and happy

The Books I Picked & Why

What the Happiest Retirees Know: 10 Habits for a Healthy, Secure, and Joyful Life

By Wes Moss

Book cover of What the Happiest Retirees Know: 10 Habits for a Healthy, Secure, and Joyful Life

Why this book?

This gem of a book translates the results of Wes Moss’s survey of more than 2,000 happy retirees into ten actionable habits that help you achieve your best “second act.” I love the author’s easy, breezy writing style. Find out how many “core pursuits” are needed to make you a happier retiree!


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Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions

By Dan Ariely

Book cover of Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions

Why this book?

Although not a retirement book, this book will change the way you think and make your retirement richer and more meaningful. You’ll become a much better decision-maker and learn, for example, how to fight status quo bias, deal with choice overload, avoid “anchoring,” and recognize how important “hedonic adaptation” is in retirement.   


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What Retirees Want: A Holistic View of Life's Third Age

By Ken Dychtwald

Book cover of What Retirees Want: A Holistic View of Life's Third Age

Why this book?

I like authors who back up statements with research. Ken Dychtwald, CEO of Age Wave, has been studying the Boomer generation for more than three decades, and uses his research to not only demonstrate how this generation has transformed retirement, but also provides important insights for those who work with, sell to, or are Boomers themselves. Virtually every page has a nugget of useful and applicable information.


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Your Erroneous Zones: Step-By-Step Advice for Escaping the Trap of Negative Thinking and Taking Control of Your Life

By Wayne W. Dyer

Book cover of Your Erroneous Zones: Step-By-Step Advice for Escaping the Trap of Negative Thinking and Taking Control of Your Life

Why this book?

This book was originally published in 1976. It was the first time I internalized the concept that we may not be able to control what happens to us, but we can control how we react to things. This simple thought was – and is – transformational. It’s something that guides my actions to this day. Dyer provides readers with the tools to identify faulty thinking and to change our behavior to become happier and more successful. 


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Jane Eyre

By Charlotte Brontë

Book cover of Jane Eyre

Why this book?

Jane Eyre epitomizes the struggles we all face – in our daily lives, our relationships, in dashed hopes, and in persevering even in difficult times.  I like the story, the mystery of Mr. Rochester, Jane’s pluckiness, and her tenacity. I love that Jane is an independent woman who is a survivor, and won’t compromise her ideals. 

I read this book in fifth grade, and Jane’s strong character made a big impact on me. It reminded me of the Nancy Drew books, with another capable female heroine and role model.  


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