I‘m sure you love YouTube, but what kind of love is it? Most people have a list of best YouTube channels that reflects their interest and needs. Is YouTube a place where you look exclusively for fun and entertainment? After all, that’s how it all started. I often get lost in hours and hours of entertainment, and that’s great. But is it only that? Because if it is, you are missing out on one of the most critical learning tools of our time. Not only can you find professional tutorials on any subject you can think of, but you can also use YouTube for research, skills training, personal development, and everything else in between. In particular, this article will focus on some of the best YouTube channels you can watch to help your journey of self-improvement, personal development, and growth.
The Magic of the YouTube Channel
I can’t remember when I first started using YouTube, but it was quite a long time ago. The video-sharing platform popped up in our lives in 2005 when three PayPal employees realized that it was too difficult to find online videos for the things they were interested in. So, the idea of an online video sharing platform emerged, although initially, it was meant to be some sort of a dating app. Talk about taking a leap of faith!
As its popularity grew exponentially, the exposure brought it on Google’s radar, as one does. The online giant wasted no resources and acquired the still young YouTube for a mere $1.65B in 2006 and has been its owner ever since. As a platform, YouTube generates anywhere between $16B to $25B in revenues per year, so it is a rather lucrative business for Google. And when you think about the fact that it’s the users of the site that create all the content, it’s quite a cash cow in its own right.
Soon, the concept of a YouTube creator started to morph from a hobby to a job. For some, it’s quite a job! For instance, 9-year old Ryan Kaji earned about $29M by posting videos to his 40M+ subscribers.
As creators began to understand the power of focus and specialization, channels started to be less of a mish-mash of everything and more of a platform to answer specific needs or address a particular issue.
YouTube Channel Specialization
We began to see channels about business, health, finance, and in all of those categories, even narrower ones that tackle a specific area of business, health, or finance.
I had used YouTube primarily for entertainment until about five years ago when I finally discovered the hidden value that lay hidden once I was able to look beyond just the fun of it. I quickly became a YouTube channel aficionado, and soon enough, I was subscribing left and right. My interests were quite polarized at the time. I was working on improving my writing, learning how to be a better person in general, improve my health and fitness, and also upgrade my work skills.
I think that at some point in time, I subscribed to over two hundred channels. Of course, this started to defy the purpose of focus. Subscribed to too many channels, I began to lose sight of the forest for the trees.
So, about a year ago, I did a severe purging of my YouTube channels and kept those that have the following characteristics:
- They address one or more aspects in my current high-priority list.
- Their creators post often and with consistency.
- I enjoy the attitude and style of the creators.
- The material presented is well researched and presented concisely.
So, I thought that in this article, I would present you with some of the best YouTube channels that have continually assisted me in my personal development and self-improvement over the past few years. At the same time, I want to extend the most genuine thank you to their creators for the effort they put into sharing their knowledge, research, and struggles with all of us. Thank you!
Best YouTube Channels For Personal Development
Evan Carmichael is one of the people who influenced a lot of the changes in my recent life. His videos and series of videos delivered directly to my email have brightened my day and filled me up with motivation and the desire to be a better person. Evan came out of personal struggles and managed to grow his channel to almost 3 million subscribers and over 300 million views.
What I particularly love about Evan is his joyful attitude and confidence with which he delivers the message. He interviewed some of the most successful people on Earth, and every week he continues to deliver great content and powerful messages. No surprise that Ed Mylett called Evan a modern-day Napoleon Hill.
Currently, Evan runs about 13 other specialized channels besides the main one linked below. The videos tackle important subjects such as motivation, entrepreneurial and success mindsets, and how to live with purpose, among others. Here is one of my favorites where Evan shares his Top 10 Rules for Success:
Looking back over the past five years, I honestly believe that Thomas’ youtube channel is the one where I’ve spent most of my contiguous hours of binge-watching from all the other channels on this list. Thomas’s channel opened my eyes to many life hacks that have eluded me for most of my life. I’ve learned so much, and I am truly grateful to Thomas for sharing such a wealth of information.
The videos on this channel include tips for productivity, time management, personal growth and improvement, book reviews, tools and apps reviews, and a lot more advice on living a happier and more fulfilled life.
Thomas started his journey by launching the CollegeInfoGeek website to help students who faced similar issues in college. To this day, this is a great resource for young people who want to know how to learn faster, better, and retain more information without burning out. One of my favorite pages of all time from this site is Thomas’s “impossible list”—basically one of the most comprehensive and, frankly, crazy bucket/goal lists I’ve ever seen: my impossible list.
Overall, Thomas is just a cool dude with a desire to create the best version of himself. He is kind enough to share his ideas, experiences, and research with all of us in the process. I highly recommend you subscribe and start with Thomas’s most popular videos and see where it takes you. Here’s one of my favorites:
I first learned and discovered Mel Robbins through the app Blinklist. I wanted to read something new, and I found this great app that gives snippets of summaries of books. While browsing, I stumbled upon the 5 Second Rule book. I was totally mesmerized by the information in that summary, and, eventually, I bought the book, read it, and even wrote an article on the 5-second rule. Why? Because it works.
That book opened up my eyes to Mel’s vast world. Her story is one of climbing up the corporate ladder, falling, and getting up again. It’s a tale of rebirth, rediscovery, and recreation of one’s self. It’s a truly inspiring demonstration of what you can achieve when you finally decide to do something.
Mel didn’t leave it at that, though. She decided to go ahead and spread that knowledge around the world. She wrote books, created courses, produced videos and audio content, and began to speak publicly at events. Her YouTube channel is a genuine treasure of wisdom and practical advice.
What I love most about Mel’s videos is that they almost seem done on a whim. You’ll see Mel talking for five minutes from her car at a red light or in the kitchen while drinking coffee. Although short, there’s a huge amount of wisdom per minute packed in there. It’s incredible, and I often find myself shedding a tear or two while listening because of how much it resonates with me.
Overall, Mel is one of my most favorite authors, and her channel always sends sparks of motivation my way. Here’s one of my favorite videos from her channel:
Matt D’Avella is a filmmaker, YouTuber, and entrepreneur who explores vital things such as productivity, minimalism, and habits. In 2021, Matt created the movie Minimalism—a documentary about the important things in life. He’s also behind the Slow Growth Academy, a series of courses that “turn small steps into giant leaps.” Matt runs a podcast and the YouTube channel where I’ve discovered his wonderful work.
I absolutely love Matt’s videos because they are straightforward and to the point. Most of them also follow Matt himself as he’s experimenting with the concepts he’s trying to tackle. Many of the videos came out of challenges, such as waking up at 5 am for 30 days or taking a cold shower every day for 30 days. Matt documents his journey and then gives away his learnings and process.
The quality of Matt’s video is great; the videos are just the right length, and the video production is wonderful. After all, he is a filmmaker, and that quality shines through perfectly in his YouTube videos. If you’re interested in self-growth and personal improvement and if you like to experiment with new things, I highly recommend you check Matt’s channel.
I discovered Benjamin Hardy about six years ago when a co-worker forwarded me a PDF about getting into a peak state by doing a few simple morning routines. That document led me to search up on Benjamin, and I found his corner on Medium.com. I must’ve spent the next five days just consuming those articles as if they were pure water and I was parched. As an aspiring writer myself, I found Ben’s writing engaging, powerful, and to the point.
Later, I took some of Ben’s courses, and I got to hear him speak and present his ideas. Even later, I read his book, Willpower Doesn’t Work, which opened my eyes to a new slew of things that were elusive to me up to that point.
As far as YouTube, Ben didn’t have a large presence on the platform initially, and I believe it was a part of the marketing plan. Since late 2020, though, he began posting almost exclusively all his content directly to YouTube. So, although his channel doesn’t currently have the sizable followership of others on this list, I guarantee you that you’ll find videos that will make you think, packed with practical things you can apply in your life right away. Ben’s channel has dully earned its rightful place in the best YouTube channels list, and I’m positive it’s here to stay!
Below is a snippet of such a video where Ben talks about the 5-hour rule and how it applies to learning.
Brendon Burchard’s personal tagline is “live, love, matter.” It came to him as an epiphany after a car accident he had when he was 19 years old. It was a dark time for Brendon but also a moment of revelation, a point of inflection that changed the course of his life forever.
Today, Brendon is a renowned business coach and motivational speaker. His book, High-Performance Habits, was a Wall Street Journal bestseller and is often referred to as one of the top books on business leadership.
Brendon’s YouTube channel is an extension of his site and acts as a vlog. Here, Brendon posts videos on various topics such as self-confidence, motivation, learning, personal growth, and lots more. Sometimes, he interviews other successful people on similar topics and shares frank discussions with them.
What I like about Brendon’s delivery is the energy and focus that he puts in each montage. The messages are easy to digest and offer practical ways that you can apply to make massive changes in your life. I love that he talks directly to you, and you feel like you’ve just had a session with a personal coach.
Below is a video I often come back to where Brendon talks about regaining lost motivation.
I can only describe Amy’s channel as a fantastic place to hang out and learn things. It’s like an afternoon tea with a side of strawberry jam that you enjoy on a warm spring day in the park. Then, all of a sudden, you’re learning, and you’re having fun at the same time.
Amy’s delivery is not only super-funny and fresh, but it’s always on point and delivered directly and with care. Her content ranges from productivity tips and app reviews to motivation and life mastery tips and everything else in between. In addition to her channel, Amy also wrote a book called Good Morning Good Life and a 12-month planner that accompanies the book.
All in all, I love Amy’s videos, and I guarantee they’ll brighten up your day, too.
Here’s a great recent video from Amy about motivation and how to get it when you don’t have it.
Tom Bilyeu’s story is one of transformation and the power of mindset shift when self-awareness hits you. He left the corporate world and became a highly successful entrepreneur, founding Quest Nutrition, which became a huge success.
Later, Tom launched Impact Theory, a weekly series of interviews that explore the minds and ideas of the world’s most successful people.
Through his platform, Tom aims to give the world the tools and knowledge they need to unlock their potential and impact their own lives and the lives of those around them.
On Tom’s channel, you will meet some of the most exciting people in the world and be able to learn about their processes, struggles, and successes. Overall, this is one of the channels with the most valuable information per minute that I know, and it keeps going up in my list of the best YouTube channels.
Here is one video where Tom does a Q&A session and talks about how to overcome failure.
A few paragraphs above, I talked about Thomas Frank. Well, I’ll have you know that it was MuchelleB who introduced me to Thomas Frank. In one of her videos, she referenced the name, which intrigued me, and from there, it was all history.
But, besides that, Michelle’s videos, much like Amy Landino’s, are super energetic, filled with positivity, motivation, and powerful good vibes. She talks about creating and living an intentional life and ways to improve our lives through small, deliberate changes.
Michelle also created a journal that you can buy from her website. It’s called, The Life Map Daily Planner, and its mantra is “start living your days with intention.”
In the sample video below, Michelle talks about twenty small changes that we can all do to make for a happier year, any year (although this was done specifically for 2020).
Leo Gura is the creator of actualized.org, a site hosting over 400 videos on self-help, psychology, emotional mastery, philosophy, metaphysics, spirituality, and many more.
Now, I have to warn you—Leo’s videos are long. This channel is not your typical quick advice type of place. The lessons run well over one hour, often two hours. Sometimes Leo goes into concepts that might feel a little out there. But stick with it because there are some excellent golden nuggets in each one of them.
I suggest browsing through the high-level categories and look for the ones that interest you the most. Then, look for videos that are related, as Leo often likes to spread one idea over multiple videos.
Below is one of my favorites, where Leo says it all from the heart: how to stop caring what people think of you.
Manage Your Best YouTube Channels List For Growth
As you know, I am an avid believer in the mantra that learning never stops. Personal development is a critical part of learning and becoming a better version of yourself.
That’s why in this post, I wanted to provide you with my favorite channels focused on personal development, self-improvement, and growth. Between these channels, you’ll find enough nuggets of wisdom to tackle any area of growth, no matter where you are in your life today.
This list is by no stretch of the imagination all-inclusive; it simply reflects my personal preferences, unbiased in any way. These are channels I watch every week because I know they will teach me something new.
I urge you to create your curated list of channels that you watch regularly. YouTube started as a source of entertainment, but now it’s a learning tool, and it would be a waste not to use it in that way.
Other Resources On Best YouTube Channels
- Best Educational YouTube Channels for College Students
- The Best YouTube Channels for Self-Improvement and Motivation
- 5 YouTube Channels for Self-Improvement and Motivation You Should Subscribe To ASAP
- 8 YouTube Channels to Improve Your Productivity
Now, before you go, I have…
3 Questions For You
- What are the top 5 best YouTube channels on your list?
- Why do you mostly visit YouTube? Is it mostly for entertainment or mostly for learning and growth?
- What are YouTube channels that most people like but you genuinely despise?
Please share your answers in the comments below. Sharing knowledge helps us all improve and get better!
Hi there! I’m Iulian, and I want to thank you for reading my article. There’s a lot more if you stick around. I write about personal development, productivity, fiction writing, and more. Also, I’ve created Self-Growth Journey, a free program that helps you get unstuck and create the beautiful life you deserve. Enjoy!