7 Best Psychology Books To Understand Human Behavior

7 Best Psychology Books To Understand Human Behavior

In the past fifty years, scientists have made extraordinary leaps in the field of medical science, helping us understand the complex inner workings of our bodies. However, the mind still remains an unsolved mystery, baffling and confusing us to this day. While scientists are still working on definitive answers to questions such as why we dream, what is consciousness, and how intelligence can be defined, a lot of amazing books have been written on the human mind, books that reveal many of its previously hidden secrets. To help you in this quest for answers, we've curated a list of 7 great psychology books that will help you understand this marvel of evolution a little better.

1. Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman

Emotional Intelligence

Buy Now on Amazon

IQ or intelligence quotient is a number that represents a person's reasoning ability and problem-solving skills, it is widely regarded as a measure of a person's intelligence. However, Emotional Intelligence or EQ is another important aspect of intelligence that is largely ignored. EQ denotes a person's ability to understand and manage their own emotions in a positive way to relieve stress and communicate effectively as well as empathize with others and defuse conflicts. In this book, author and science journalist Daniel Goleman argues that emotional literacy is indispensable to living a happy and healthy life and that it can be even more important than IQ.

2. Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking by Malcolm Gladwell


Buy Now on Amazon

In Blink, Malcolm Gladwell presents a counter-intuitive view on decision making. Gladwell sheds light on how our brains make split-second decisions without really thinking about them and posits that these split-second decisions aren't as simple as they seem on the surface, claiming that they offer glimpses of the hidden nooks and crannies of our personalities. This is an incredibly enlightening book for anyone who wants to improve their decision making and understand how we make decisions, one that will truly revolutionize the way you think about thinking.

3. Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman

Thinking, Fast and Slow

Buy Now on Amazon

Published in 2011, this book by Israeli-American psychologist Daniel Kahneman explores two systems that control how we think and act. One of these systems is fast, intuitive and emotional and the other is slower, more deliberative and logical. This book discusses the pros and cons of both and teaches us when to trust our intuition and when to rely on slower, more logical decision-making. A book that will give you a groundbreaking tour of the mind and help you understand your thought process, your faults and biases, and the extraordinary capabilities of the mind.

4. Games People Play by Eric Berne

Games People Play

Buy Now on Amazon

This is an eye-opening book that helps us interpret basic social interactions and reveals that a lot of the behavior that we see around us every day can be best understood as different kinds of games. Berne takes us on a fascinating journey into the minds of everyday people to show us how to decipher complex human relationships and how life without games can offer an opportunity for more genuine bonds. First published in 1964, this book went on to become a bestseller that has sold more than five million copies and remains a revealing study on how the mind works to this day.

5. Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel H. Pink


Buy Now on Amazon

In this provocative book, Daniel H. Pink asserts that most people are not motivated by monetary incentives alone. Supported by four decades of research into human motivation, Pink demonstrates how intrinsic reasons such as autonomy, mastery, and purpose are drivers of true motivation that can help us perform better and live more satisfying lives, at home, school or at work. The book also offers surprisingly easy techniques and grass-roots advice on how to put this new understanding to work to motivate ourselves every day. Although this book is mainly geared towards the business community, it offers all of us something to learn.

6. Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking by Susan Cain


Buy Now on Amazon

This is a book that celebrates and affirms introverts in a world where constant prizes are put on socializing, teamwork, connection, and collaboration. Introverts are people who prefer listening rather than speaking, people who enjoy solitude, who innovate and create but are self-effacing, who prefer working on their own rather than in teams. In Quiet, Susan Cain passionately argues that society owes a debt of gratitude to many introverts such as Einstein, Darwin, and Abraham Lincoln for their contributions and that we as a society should never undervalue introverts. This book focuses on the strengths introverts bring to the table and reshapes how we view introverts, and more importantly, how they view themselves.

7. Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi


Buy Now on Amazon

Hungarian-American psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi asserts that true happiness can be obtained by achieving an optimal state of mind he calls 'Flow'. The author reveals how this highly focused state is conducive to productivity as well as happiness. Like meditation, he argues, such 'flow' experiences can lead to growth and genuine happiness and can be applied to one's life, education, or corporate career. Flow is an intriguing and illuminating book that hands us a blueprint of a life with enhanced happiness, productivity, and satisfaction. 

Popular Blog Posts

A conversation with Marjan Kamali

New Year, New Book, New AMA

A conversation with Rachel Joyce

December Book Club and AMA with Rachel Joyce

Ask Me Anything

Each month there is a live monthly Q&A with a wide range of interesting authors. This is your opportunity to understand your favourite books on a much more personal level.

View Upcoming AMAs