Love to read? Here are some more of our favorite books to inspire your creativity journey!

  • Start with our book Rethink Creativity! To rethink, or reconnect, with your creativity I recommend my book Rethink Creativity where I share tangible tools, research, and best practices. Rethink Creativity is also available  in Korean.


  • Confidence by Kelley brother’s Creative Confidence. For those who are skeptical about your creative confidence, it’s a great start.


  • But, seriously, how different are creative people? Let Scott and Carolyn share some scientific baed perception on how different they are in Wired to Create. Hint, they tend to be messy, sensitive and highly emotional at times.


  • Ok, but how does that look like in our life? Let Elizabeth take you on a ride on what creativity can look like from a writers perspective in Big Magic.


  • And if you thought stealing (and integrating) other ideas were bad, let Austin change your mind in Steal Like an Artist which is an enlightening breeze.


  • Still skeptical? Let Ed share his journey on how building nothing out of something is possible at Creativity, Inc. Plus, you probably have seen some of their great works – thanks to his creative ways to produce animations but also building a team.
  • Did you know how much creativity goes behind choreographing each piece of a dance? Twyla Tharp will share in The Creative Habits why building creative habits are critical to making creative thinking a routine.


  • For those who want analytical and academic background on how creative thinking and decision making works in our brain, pick up Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s Flow to get satisfying answers and perspective.


  • Educators who want to understand how creative exercise and games can help students build a more open perspective, Tina Seelig’s inGenius is great reading as she shares her experience teaching innovation and creativity classes at Standford University.


  • The War of Art is great for those who want to understand how powerful attitude is in understanding creativity.


  • Both educators and practitioners will enjoy The Art of Possibility by Zanders if they want to understand how creativity can empower individuals to see possibilities in front of adversities in art, music, and relationships.

Building a creative mindset starts with asking better questions, having an open mind, seeking grit, being ok with making mistakes and being empathetic. Where do you want to start?

  • First, we have to ask a lot of thoughtful questions. But how can we ask a more thoughtful question? Warren Berger explains the power of A More Beautiful Question in his studies in questioning as an educator and researcher.
  • Second, we have to understand that shifting one’s mindset means building better assets. David Brooks look in The Road to Character what paths leaders took to build good characteristics and why this is important in our personal growth.
  • Third, we must recognize how powerful having an open mindset is compared to a fixed one. Carol Dweck’s research on Mindset will help you get a good glimpse of this. We highly recommend for educators and parents who work with young adults.
  • Fourth, keep track of your happiness. Dr. Emma Seppala can explain in The Happiness Track why happiness is a powerful component in our growth.
  • And lastly, remember that building a mindset is a journey. As Neil Gaiman speaks in his Make Good Art speech, making good art takes a lot of effort and time but it is also the most gratifying work as that is something that we can uniquely give back to the universe

Empathy plays a critical role in creative thinking. When we are empathetic, we are open to more ideas, we are willing to have a ‘user-friendly’ perspective and be open to surprises. If you are ready to dive a bit deeper into this subject, we have some suggestions for you:

  • A transformative new vision for the way we lead, love, work, parent, and educate that teaches us the power of vulnerability. Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead, by Brené Brown.
  • Heal small emotional injuries before they become big ones. Emotional First Aid: Healing Rejection, Guilt, Failure, and Other Everyday Hurts, by Guy Winch.
  • Rising Strong: The Reckoning. The Rumble. The Revolution, by Brené Brown.

Make ‘creativity’ a habit – it’s going to help you in the long run. These books that dive deeper into the studies done in habit development will help you understand why:

  • In The Power of Habitaward-winning business reporter Charles Duhigg takes us to the thrilling edge of scientific discoveries that explain why habits exist and how they can be changed.
  • Excellent book for those readers who want to get a glimpse into the schedules of extraordinarily talented artists… that even true masters have to find the mundane ritual of daily routine a necessity when creating great work. Daily Rituals: How Artists Work, by Mason Currey.
  • At least one-third of our waking hours are lived on autopilot. But habits of the mind do not have to control us—we can steer them. Psychologist Jeremy Dean explains why seemingly easy habits can prove difficult to form and how to take charge of your brain’s routines to make any change stick. Making Habits, Breaking Habits, by Jeremy Dean.
  • A revelatory look at how we make decisions. Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness, by Richard H. Thaler and Cass R. Sunstein.

Did you know that creativity studies have been around since 1950s? There are a lot of trends and studies done since then. Here are more books that we enjoyed that can help you continue in the journey of creativity:

  • Discover how our mistakes can be powerful opportunities for new ideas that we could never think up deliberately. The Art of Mistakes: Unexpected Painting Techniques and the Practice of Creative Thinking, by Melanie Rothschild.
  • Dive into the cognitive tools as diverse as observing, imaging, recognizing patterns, modeling, playing, and more to provide “a clever, detailed and demanding fitness program for the creative mind”. Sparks of Genius: The Thirteen Thinking Tools of the World’s Most Creative People, by Robert S. Root-Bernstein.
  • This book includes more than 80 games to help you break down barriers, communicate better, and generate new ideas, insights, and strategies. Gamestorming: A Playbook for Innovators, Rulebreakers, and Changemakers, by Dave Gray, Sunni Brown, and James Macanufo.
  • The Artist’s Way, by Julia Cameron, is the seminal book on the subject of creativity and powerfully provocative and inspiring work. An international bestseller, millions of readers have found it to be an invaluable guide to living the artist’s life.
  • Show Your Work!, by Austin Kleon, is about why generosity trumps genius. It’s about getting findable, about using the network instead of wasting time “networking.” Filled with illustrations, quotes, stories, and examples, it offers ten transformative rules for being open, generous, brave, productive.
  • With wisdom from 20 leading creative minds, Manage Your Day-to-Day, by 99U, will give you a toolkit for tackling the new challenges of a 24/7, always-on workplace.

To rethink, or reconnect, with your creativity I recommend my book Rethink Creativity where I share tangible tools, research, and best practices. Rethink Creativity is also available  in Korean.

If you are a storytelling learner, you may enjoy reading what companies like Disney, Nike, Pixar, Zapoos, Apple, and Warby Parker have done differently and intentionally:

If you enjoy more research based collective storytelling, you’ll enjoy these authors. Their work reminds me how to learn, unlearn, and never assume what we know about innovation, culture, collaboration, and leadership:


If you want to build a different, or stronger, culture we can help you. Learn more about our culture development program services and our Rethink Leading program.

How we speak and communicate matters. How we feel connected, appreciated, understood, or hurt all stems from how we speak, show up, and interact with one another. Whether we are speaking, on Zoom, writing an email, or responding to a social media comment, how can we be more mindful, thoughtful, and articulate in what we are expressing and communicating?

  • Feelings and Healings: There was a time we used to frown upon talking about feelings in the workplace. Now we know, through research, that in order to show up healthier and happier we have to show up as our full selves. To understand why this is scientifically true, you’ll enjoy reading:
    • Brené Brown studies how vulnerability and courage in the workplace can reshape how we show up to work. You’ll enjoy Daring Greatly or Dare to Lead
    • Guy Winch studies how a lack of an emotional first aid kit has made it hard for us to heal our wounds as adults. And the workplace is full of moments where we unconsciously inflict wounds on one another. Learn how you can build your Emotional First Aid to heal from rejection, guilt, and failure.
    • The Harvard Grant Study is the 80+ year adult research study. It examined what makes humans happy no matter where you work is the result of  relationships and care you feel. If you’d like to see the research from the first 75 years, you’ll enjoy the Triumphs of Experience.


  • Practice How You Speak: The question is how can we speak more thoughtfully and intentionally? Practice, practice, practice. Here are some of my favorite books I go back to to remind myself how to speak with empathy, patience, and thoughtfulness:
    • How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie is a classic that is worth going back to. Yes, it may be a bit old-English style writing, but it reminds us how speaking from your listeners point of view is key to relating to others. It’s not about you, it’s about them.


  • Understanding and Appreciating Differently: Have you ever felt misunderstood or under appreciated even though your colleagues said something nice to you? It’s likely because how you feel loved, appreciated, and connected is different from how it was expressed. This happens all the time at work. As a leader we can be more intentional by learning about our styles and about our team’s style.
    • I found tools, including, the Five Love Languages and DISC Assessment to be a helpful reference and reminder of how I can be more mindful when connecting with others. The Five Love Languages has a framework for the workplace called Appreciation Languages. You can read or check out the free assessment here. DISC Assessment is not a book but we can share more if you are interested in completing one with us.


If you want to hone your communication skills you may enjoy working with our coaches for deeper reflection and accountability, learn how you can work with our coaches.

Why do some moments feel magical while others feel flat? It’s because of how the host facilitates and curates the experience. At InnovatorsBox we design our offerings as experienced and expert curators. So we spend a lot of time researching and learning how to facilitate, bring people together, and create powerful moments. Here are books that inspired me to rethink how I create powerful and purposeful moments: 

  • Creator of Moments: First, understanding how bringing people together is an experience is critical. Whether it’s a weekly team meeting, onboarding new team members, or a celebration of a milestone, what we do with those moments is up to us. You can make the most ordinary moment the most remarkable moment—if you intend to do so. Reading these books deepened our understanding of how powerful moments can be created when you intentionally curate them:


  • Facilitation Skills: Next let’s hone our facilitation skills. I’ve enjoyed learning how other masters use different frameworks and tools to bring people together to think differently, feel safe, and increase collaboration and conversations. Depending on what skill you are looking to hone, here are several books I go back to rekindle my creative facilitation skills—which is so much more than putting together a meeting agenda.


And while you’re at it, if you want to hone your facilitation skills, you may enjoy our Rethink Facilitation program.

Let’s be honest. As an innovator you are likely running a million miles an hour and everyone (including yourself) is always wondering how you do so much! While you may love the drive, it’s important to intentionally make space for self-care and self-reflection. I get it because I’m like you. I’m tempted to be on the go all the time so I intentionally block time for self-care and to pause, reflect, and play to restore my energy and mind. Since you are here, reading is probably one of the ways you like to recharge, too. Here is my recommended reading about the science of recharging and self-care.

  • Sleep: Experts say we need at least 7-8 hours a day to thrive.


  • Mindfulness and Meditation: How do you practice this when you feel like you have to race all the time? No matter where you are in your practice of mindfulness there is always space to improve: 


  • Self-Compassion: To fully restore you have to include self-compassion. How are you caring for yourself in the most meaningful and intentional way?


  • Play: As we grow older we grow out of creativity but you can reconnect by building in intentional play time.


If you are looking for more resources, you may enjoy our free creative resources tool kits and worksheets.

I LOVE children’s books. I linger in the children’s section whenever I visit the bookstore. Since the pandemic, I started creating my own library of children’s books. I love how healing, inspiring, and reflective it has been to have them near me. Ever since I shared my library with few friends I’ve been asked for children’s book recommendations that spur creativity, openness, courage, and positivity. So I wanted to share a few with you that I hope you’ll enjoy, too. Whether you read this for yourself or with your little ones, I know this will bring a smile to your face and remind you that creativity is a journey not a destination. 

  • We are currently working on an original children’s story collection on creativity! Stay tuned for more updates.

In the meantime, here are several titles I recommend: