The annual season of self-improvement is here, and so here are a selection of self-help books worth taking a look at
As we reflect on another year, there’s a lot of pressure to buy into the “new year, new me” mantra and attempt to perfect every detail in our lives. In recent times, filled with uncertainty and reinvention, the sales of self-help books have soared in popularity.
Whether that be trauma healing, career help, or how to stop people pleasing, there is something out there for everyone. Self-help books can provide that lightbulb moment, with gentle guidance to slowly improve your life, without feeling like you have to suddenly go to the gym six days a week and correct every mistake you have ever made.
Remember, the purpose of a self-help book is to encourage you to live your happiest life, not change who you are. Here are our picks of the best, and most highly rated self-help books to help tackle that new year anxiety.
This No 1 New York Times bestseller has crept onto many bookshelves over this year, the most notable being the queen of emotions herself, Adele, who praised it on her Instagram; “this book will shake your brain and make your soul scream. I am so ready for myself after reading this book! It’s as if I just flew into my body for the very first time.” If it’s good enough for Adele, it’s good enough for us, right?
Part autobiographical and part self-help, it’s the perfect book to kickstart your year and start living for yourself. Although this book could be enjoyed by anyone, the prime audience is women, as Doyle talks a lot about doubts during motherhood, and the overwhelming need women feel to put everyone before themselves.
The key message is that the most important person in your life is you, as cliché as it sounds. Doyle shows us our lives in a new light. That without even realising it, we may be working hard to please everyone around us, forgetting the most important person—ourselves.
This book is a step-by-step guide to fixing up your routine. It delves into the psychology behind habits—how to form good ones and break the bad ones. If you’re a victim of procrastination, this may be the push you need.
Clear goes into detail on motion vs action. We spend so much timing planning, journaling, and writing in our diaries, rather than taking action towards actually achieving our goals. In the new year, we lean towards drastic changes when really, it’s the small changes that have remarkable results if you stick to them.
This is exactly what it says on the tin. Manson homes in on how everything isn’t always as it looks. Having the nicest car, prettiest partner, or most expensive apartment won’t make you the happiest person. The key to having a good life is focussing on what’s important to you—not how your life looks to everyone else. You have to love the process, not just the result.
Having sold 15 million copies, this book is interesting as unlike other self-help books, it encourages you to try less, rather than more. It wants you to acknowledge that life will always have problems, and happiness can come from having and solving them.
The writing is both honest and vulnerable, while giving us practical tips on how each of us can feel stronger and that little bit less alone.
This book is all about improving the relationships you have with others in your life, making you a better listener, and overall a better friend. It’s like a hardback version of a warm hug.
With simple tips such as including the person’s name in conversation and making sure you’re genuinely interested in what they’re saying, you can ensure they will remember you. The core idea is that you can change other people’s behaviour by changing your own, therefore building stronger relationships.
“Escape the 9-5, live anywhere and join the new rich”. This best seller proposes the idea that you don’t need to wait for retirement and defer your life plan. Instead, you can trade a long-haul career for short work bursts and frequent “mini-retirements”. Ferris says that people don’t want to be millionaires, they want to experience what they think only millionaires can buy.
So, whether it’s mental wellness, finance, or relationships, rather than trying to solve every problem at once, why not take it one self-help book at a time?
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