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5 Books for Better Mental Health

5 Books for Coping With Mental Health Issues

  • The Happiness Trap: How to Stop Struggling and Start Living: A Guide to ACT
  • The Anxiety Toolkit: Strategies for Fine-Tuning Your Mind and Moving Past Your Stuck Points
  • The Noonday Demon: An Atlas Of Depression
  • Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy
  • The Self-Care Project: How to Let Go of Frazzle and Make Time for You

When seeking books for better mental health, it’s important not to judge a title by its size, blurb or cover design. You’ll need to dive into their pages to determine if they’re offering valuable information on things like depression and anxiety. Here are just five mental health books that are worth perusing.

1. The Happiness Trap: How to Stop Struggling and Start Living: A Guide to ACT

A common treatment for depression is cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), a kind of therapy that aims to reduce and redirect negative thoughts. This book proposes a different solution: acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), which is more about equipping oneself to deal with bad feelings rather than trying to banish them outright. The Happiness Trap isn’t the first book to talk about ACT, but it’s one of the more honest, straightforward ones, and it uses everyday language instead of highbrow academic terms. There’s even an illustrated version for visual learners. It will be a gentle introduction to ACT.

2. The Anxiety Toolkit: Strategies for Fine-Tuning Your Mind and Moving Past Your Stuck Points

The Anxiety Toolkit lives up to its name by providing everything from questionnaires to guided meditation techniques for people who suffer from anxiety. It has a nuts-and-bolts approach to its subject, and it will teach readers to tackle their problems by recognizing, identifying and dismantling them one by one. The chapters are short and easy to skim; the language is never complicated. It’s the kind of book that can be grabbed during an anxious episode and used as a calming tool.

3. The Noonday Demon: An Atlas Of Depression

With a whopping 668 pages, The Noonday Demon is a doorstopper on depression. The author covers just about everything that you could want to know on the subject, including its history, biology, pharmacology, cultural significance, and medical background. While it’s more of an academic tome than a self-help guide, this book might be an asset to people who are struggling with the “why”s and “how”s of their depression. Education might be the first step to figuring out a personal treatment plan.

4. Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy

Despite its colorful design and friendly language, Feeling Good takes a science-based approach to happiness. It doesn’t waste time with motivational platitudes; instead, it offers self-help techniques that are based on clinical trials and modern psychiatric research. The author discusses stress, trauma, anxiety, depression, procrastination, and poor self-esteem, and he offers real-world techniques for both recognizing them and minimizing their impact on your life.

5. The Self-Care Project: How to Let Go of Frazzle and Make Time for You

With a warm, empathetic tone, The Self-Care Project takes its readers on a journey to physical and emotional wellness. It starts by unpacking the myth that people are “selfish” when they put themselves first, and it continues by offering tips, tricks, lists, questions and suggestions for feeling better. It’s a book that acknowledges the reality of self-care: It’s a marathon and not a sprint.

Books can be a great resource for mental health issues. Whether you’re looking for information on depression, anxiety, OCD, ADHD or something else entirely, consider these five books for better mental health.