2. Notes on a Nervous Planet by Matt Haig
You might feel like the last person on earth to not have read this book and wondering whether it’s worth all the hype. I don’t know about you, but if something is too popular I am put off it until the fuss dies down. I’m the same with movies and hit singles – I know, weird. This book however is worth the hype. It is gentle, warm, insightful and yet pin-point accurate in outlining how terrifying it can feel to be on earth sometimes. Written before the global pandemic, it’s never felt more resonant, and will help soothe the soul.
4. The Comparison Cure: How to be Less ‘Them’ and More You by Lucy Sheridan
With more time on our hands and less actual interaction, it’s not surprising that we are all sliding down that slippery, god-awful slope into the hellhole that is social media comparison. Even those who think they are smart enough not to, who know how ridiculous it all is, are finding ourselves comparing everything they are doing/not doing, eating/not eating, coping/not coping with people they either barely know or don’t know at all on Instagram and Facebook. Lucy is like a friend who takes you by the hand and shows you how to stop being so silly. We all need a friend like Lucy.
7. F**k it: The Ultimate Spiritual Way by John C. Parkin
In this inspiring and humorous book, John suggests that saying F**k It is the perfect Western expression of the Eastern spiritual ideas of letting go, giving up and finding real freedom by realising that things don’t matter so much (if at all).
8. Riders by Jilly Cooper
I know. It’s not a self-help book per-se but oh my, this is exactly what we all need when the world seems to have gone to shit. Pour some wine, demand solitude from the rest of the house, run a bath, lock the door and indulge. What’s it about? Mainly saucy romps in the hay by the horsey set, but so much more…
9. Take a Moment: Activities to Refocus, Re-centre and Relax Wherever You Are with Mind and Michael O’Mara
This isn’t so much a book as a ‘self-care companion’ which encourages you to write down any niggling thoughts that you may be having, breathing exercises, body scans and tips for dealing with anxiety and panic. All proceeds go to the incredible mental health charity Mind.
10. Mindfulness For Mums by Izzy Judd
Being in lockdown adds a whole new dimension to motherhood, especially for those with young children who now don’t have their usual friendly distractions. Izzy has put together a series of activities and exercises to be done alone (when you can) and with the children, to help ease your frazzled mind. Written pre-lockdown, these work just as well now.
Being depressed doesn’t necessarily mean feeling sad as one of our contributors found out…