Jade Boyd Co.


35 Books I Read in 2020

I'm Jade!

MBA | Business Strategist | Productivity Coach | I help busy service providers bring order to chaos with minimalist strategies and systems.

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If you’re like me, you’re constantly looking for good book recommendations!

In this post, I’m going to keep it short and sweet! Here are the books I read in 2020 with a short review of each. Happy reading!


The 5 Love Languages, Gary Chapman

I was late to the party on this one, but it was a really great read for our first year of marriage! My primary love language is words of affirmation. <3 Full Description

The Meaning of Marriage, Tim Keller

Another great book for anyone who is married or considering marriage! Tim Keller is one of my favorite pastors to listen too, and his books are applicable and easy to read. Full Description

Voice of the Heart: A Call to Full Living, Chip Dodd

Chip Dodd claims that there are really only 8 emotions. Sometimes it’s hard for us to communicate how we feel, and this book gives you and your partner a common language for communicating your emotions. We’ve found this SO helpful in our first year of marriage! Full Description

The Road Back to You: An Enneagram Journey to Self-Discovery, Ian Morgan Cron

If you haven’t taken the Enneagram assessment yet, get on it! Not only does this assessment give me IG entertainment for days, it helps me better understand how I relate to the world and empathize with others’ points of view too. Full Description

Boundaries: When to Say Yes, How to Say No to Take Control of Your Life, Henry Cloud

This is a great read for anyone who finds themselves saying yes to too many things/people and feeling overwhelmed or unappreciated. And let’s be honest, isn’t that all of us every once in a while? Saying no doesn’t mean you’re selfish, it means you know your priorities and limits! This book has a lot of helpful and practical advice for those of us who struggle to draw lines in the sand. Full Description


You’re a BadAss at Making Money, Jen Sincero

This book is a great introduction to ‘money mindset’ for any new or experienced entrepreneur! To be honest, I feel like manifesting your success is a little too ‘woo’ for me, but Jen’s story and advice makes it more tangible. There are so many quotable passages that will leave you feeling inspired and confident in your worth. Full Description

You are the Girl for the Job: Daring to Believe the God who Calls You, Jess Connelly

The perfect book for the girl who’s questioning whether or not she’s doing what she’s “supposed to be doing.” Jess reminds us all that there is no separation between the secular and spiritual, your work has infinite purpose, and you’re right where you’re supposed to be, even if it’s messy! Full Description

Own Your Everyday: Overcome the Pressure to Prove and Show Up for What You Were Made to Do, Jordan Lee Dooley

If you’re a multi-passionate entrepreneur who feels off balance jumping from one idea to the next, this one’s for you! We all feel the pressure to “figure it out” but you don’t need to have all the answers to live a purposeful life. I read this alongside some other female entrepreneurs, and we had a really good discussion about perfectionism and the power of showing up! Full Description

Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, Carol Dweck

Dweck describes two mindsets: the fixed mindset and the growth mindset. The research in this book is fascinating, and it’s such a great reminder that mindset is oh so important in business and life! If you doubt the power of mindset, this book will, well, change your mind! 😉 Full Description

Find Your Why: A Practical Guide for Discovering Purpose for You and Your Team, Simon Sinek

I would recommend reading ‘Start with Why’ first, then reading ‘Find Your Why’ with a friend or coworker who knows you well! Simon Sinek lays out a simple plan to help you uncover your why, but having someone to process with is super important. I’m also a strong believer that action produces clarity, so don’t let yourself get stuck feeling like you have to figure out your why today. It’s a process that takes time. Full Description

Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire People to Take Action, Simon Sinek

This is one of the fundamental business books that every entrepreneur should read. It will revolutionize the way you think and talk about your products and services (for the better)! Full Description

Capital Gaines: Smart Things I Learned Doing Stupid Stuff, Chip Gaines

This is not a book I would usually pick up (judging on the cover), but it ended up being one of my favorites! This is an easy, light-hearted read that will keep you engaged chapter after chapter. ‘Wise’ may not be the first word that comes to mind when you think of Chip Gaines, but that’s what he gives you in this book. It’s full of fundamental life lessons that we all need to be reminded of. Full Description

The Magnolia Story, Chip and Joanna Gaines

It was so inspiring for us to learn the stories behind the Magnolia brand while we were in Waco, Texas last year! This book will open your eyes to what’s possible for you when you find your passion and trust God in the process. Full Description

Rising Strong: How the Ability to Reset Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead, Brene Brown

We all need a good reminder that vulnerability is our strength. I love how Brene combines memorable personal stories with scientific research in her writing. It makes the content all the more memorable and impactful – highly recommend! Full Description

The Infinite Game, Simon Sinek

Okay, you got me, I became a Simon Sinek fangirl in 2020. Lest you be tempted to play the short game for some quick wins, this book will set you straight. As an entrepreneur, it sometimes feels like things are moving too slowly, but this book opened my eyes to what’s possible when you play the long-game. Full Description

Spiritual + Christianity

Garden City: Work, Rest, and the Art of Being Human, John Mark Comer

I often find it difficult to prioritize rest, and this was a really interesting take on why rest is important, specifically for believers. Although there were some parts of the book I didn’t fully agree with, it’s still a book I’d recommend if you want a fresh take on rest and productivity! Full Description

A Praying Life: Connecting with God in a Distracting World, Paul Miller

This is the best book on prayer I’ve ever read. It will move your heart towards a praying life as well as give you practical tips (my favorite!) on how to build the habit. Full Description

Marketing + Branding

Storyscaping: Stop Creating Ads, Start Creating Worlds, Gaston Legorburu

This was a different take on marketing, with interesting examples of storyscaping from companies around the world. Although most of the case studies in this book are unattainable for small business owners, the lesson remains the same: give your customers an experience. Full Description

Minimalist Marketing: How Entrepreneurs and Nonprofits are Reaching their Audience Without a Marketing Budget, Joe Fontenot

For business owners without a formal business education, this book will sum up what you need to know. For people like me who wasted too much money on formal business education, this book will remind you to come back to the basics and stop overcomplicating things! Full Description

Building a StoryBrand: Clarify Your Message so Customers will Listen, Donald Miller

Donald Miller claims that he’s disrupting the formal education system by making business education simple and affordable. As someone with a BBA and MBA in Marketing, I feel like this book gave me more practical business knowledge than 6 years of formal education. This is the very first book I’d recommend to any small business owner! Full Description

Marketing Made Simple: A Step-by-Step StoryBrand Guide for Any Business, Donald Miller

Working through this book will be simple, but not easy! It took me several months to work my way through this book, but it’s totally worth it! Full Description

I am My Brand: How to Build Your Brand Without Apology, Kubi Springer

The first few chapters of this book were phenomenal. In the later parts of the book, Kubi gets into very detailed planning for your brand, which may or may not be helpful to you depending on which stage of business you’re in. Full Description


Digital Minimalism: Choosing a Focused Life in a Noisy World, Cal Newport

It’s hard to create good boundaries for technology, but this book breaks it down in thoughtful and compelling ways. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who’s feeling overwhelmed by social media and the expectation to always be available. Full Description

The One Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results, Gary Keller

As someone who’s obsessed with minimalism and productivity, this book hit all the sweet spots! I would recommend that everyone read this book because it’s applicable in so many areas of life. Full Description


Little Fires Everywhere, Celeste Ng

I loved this book so much! I especially loved the way that Celeste described the work of the photographer in this book, it was beautiful. Then I binge watched the entire TV series on Hulu – I’d recommend reading the book first, always better! Full Description

Behind Closed Doors, B.A. Paris

I’m not gonna lie – this is a really disturbing book, but you won’t want to put it down (or sleep)! Full Description

Productivity + Personal Development

Off the Clock: Feel Less Busy While Getting More Done, Laura Vanderkam

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Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones, James Clear

This is the primary productivity book that I would recommend to anyone. I love how James Clear focuses on the trajectory of our days and improving by 1% every day. I’d also recommend listening to any podcasts he’s in, because he’ll always leave you with something memorable! Full Description

Your Best Year Ever: A 5-Step Plan for Achieving Your Most Important Goals

If you find goal-setting to be overwhelming, this is a great read. Hyatt makes goal setting simple and enjoyable. Full Description

Free to Focus: A Total Productivity System to Achieve More by Doing Less

Again, you can’t go wrong with Michale Hyatt. So good! Full Description

The Miracle Morning: The Not-So-Obvious Secret Guaranteed to Transform Your Life (Before 8AM)

This was one of the most inspirational productivity books I’ve read. Even if you’re not a morning person (yet), I’d suggest giving this one a try. Full Description

Do Less: A Revolutionary Approach to Time and Energy Management for Ambitious Women, Kate Northrup

This one was not what I expected! Over the past few years, the idea of managing your productivity based on your menstrual cycle has become more and more popular. This book was very different from any productivity book I’ve read, and although I won’t be organizing my life around the full moon, there were a lot of practical tips to take from this method! Full Description

Living Forward: A Proven Plan to Stop Drifting and Get the Life You Want, Michael Hyatt

Another good one from Michael Hyatt. I combined his Life Plan outline with a simpler framework that Don Miller teaches. I printed my 10 year vision and 1 year vision and taped them in my goal planner to read every month (although they would both suggest reading them a few times per week). Full Description

To Hell with the Hustle: Reclaiming Your Life in an Overworked, Overspent, and Overconnected World, Jefferson Bethke

I love setting goals, so there were some thoughts in this book that were challenging for me! However, his perspective was one that I needed to hear. We could all benefit from some silence, rest, and enjoyment of the present moment. Full Description

Home Improvement

Homebody, A Guide to Creating Spaces You Never Want to Leave, Joanna Gaines

This is the only coffee table book I’ve ever read cover to cover – I loved it! Joanna gives such practical advice on how to make spaces in your home that you can fully enjoy, even on a budget. The designs in the book gave me so many new ideas for our own home remodel. Full Description

Happy Reading in 2021!

I hope my reading list and short takeaways left you with a few new reads to tackle in 2021! If you have any questions, you know where to find me – connect with me on Instagram @jadeboydphotography!


Hi, I'm jade!

Ready to simplify and scale your services?

From MBA to Brand Photographer to Business Coach, I learned the hard way how to build a life-first business that allows me to work part-time hours without sacrificing profit. Now I help service providers simplify and scale their businesses so they can earn their dream income while living life on their schedule. If you're ready to build a sustainable, profitable service business (without the burnout), apply for the Business Edit™ Group Coaching Program today!

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Business + Productivity Coach | I help busy creatives bring order to chaos with an intentional strategy and simple systems.

Hi, I'm Jade!

Jade Boyd Co.