Self-help, happiness, and fixing negative thinking patterns is a big business these days. Chances are you have spent time in the self-help aisle of your bookstore; researched a perfect pill for your symptoms; or a professional who will help you finally achieve that happy and blissful life you’ve been seeking. The problem is that many of your thoughts and behaviors have been hardwired in your brain for years, so it takes both a biological and environmental change in order to get the happy results and self-esteem you desire.
You may be on a health crusade, taking your supplements and eating right, but just can’t seem to make the happiness stick or the ruminating low self-esteem thoughts go away. Healthy lifestyle changes are super important and challenging your thoughts as well as changing them are necessary too. Avoiding triggers like your ex’s Facebook page or incorporating a habit are great starts to shifting your mindset. Some books are written with the purpose of making us happier- literal handbooks– those that inspire us to take initiative to make our lives as bright as they can be and start to think in a new, happier way.
You may be thinking, I don’t have time to read. I’m too stressed or have too much on my plate! Well, download the books below or find a podcast by one of these amazing happiness experts and get inspired. I’ve got a to-do list that could circle the globe right now, but one thing I have found to keep me feeling happy is keeping inspirational messages from books or people near me at all times. I even travel with a book or two (like a security blanket). I know any page I have dogeared or turn to will give me a tip to challenge a crappy moment. Here are some that have been life-changers for clients and that can help you get the happiness you are seeking.
Books to Read Now to Get Happy
- The Feeling Good Handbook is a godsend. Burns gives strategies to handle difficult people, communicate with confidence, and overcome debilitating anxiety and depression with time-tested tools. You can open any page and find a tool that will make you feel better and more motivated. Not to mention, the techniques really work! Want to learn how how to communicate better? How to get more self-esteem or avoid losing self-esteem? Relationship help or just learning more about, “Why am I insecure?” All of these questions are resolved with the simple skills in this book.
- Happiness Now!: Timeless Wisdome for Feeling Good FAST is a powerful and innovative read on finding happiness in everyday life. Each page is enriching and helps readers with self-acceptance, relationships, inner success and happy thoughts. Using a highly creative mix of research, wisdom, stories, exercises, meditations, poetry and prayer. Author Robert Holden, Ph.D., is the Director of The Happiness Project and Success Intelligence. His work on happiness and success has been featured on Oprah and in two major BBC-TV documentaries, The Happiness Formula and How to Be Happy, shown in 16 countries to more than 30 million television viewers.
- Ready for a shift? The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are is a guide to wholehearted living, which she defines as containing courage, compassion, deliberate boundaries, and connection build self-esteem. She has defined 10 guideposts for personal introspection, which involve cultivating some positive quality, whether it be authenticity, self-compassion, or a resilient spirit, intuition, meaningful work, or laughter. Each guidepost is the focus of a chapter that contains illustrative stories, primarily from her own life; and definitions, including the difference between shame and guilt. It is a must have for developing strong self-esteem.
- Danielle LaPorte is the bestselling author of The Fire Starter Sessions: A Soulful + Practical Guide to Creating Success on Your Own Terms and an entrepreneur, social media sensation, and inspirational speaker. With The Desire Map: A Guide to Creating Goals with Soul, Danielle LaPorte brings you a holistic life-planning tool that will revolutionize the way you go after, and feel, about your dreams and desires. She helps you create goals with soul. “Core desired feelings” in every life domain: livelihood and lifestyle, body and wellness, creativity and learning, relationships and society, and essence and spirituality are covered. It also includes self-assessment quizzes, worksheets, and tools for creating the life you truly want and the feelings of confidence you have desired.
No matter how you are finding happiness, make sure to keep the balance between biological changes (supplements, medications if prescribed, and a healthy diet) along with tools and interventions like these happiness handbooks to make a change that will last a lifetime.
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Emily Roberts MA, LPC is The Guidance Girl. Her goal is to help YOU become the most confident person you know! Emily is an award-winning author Express Yourself: A Teen Girls Guide to Speaking Up and Becoming Who You Are, Psychotherapist, TV & Media Contributor, Educational Speaker, and parenting consultant. She travels around the country educating girls, women, and parents. Express Yourself is available at bookstores nationwide and on Amazon. To learn more about Emily click here.