Some of you asked to know a bit more about the books that helped me with the depression I felt in 2014. I’m a little nervous about sharing them all with you, because so many of them talk about things like your inner guide, high power/God, miracles, quantum fields of energy, etc. The kind of stuff that if you overheard someone going on about at a cocktail party, you’d probably steer clear. This isn’t stuff I thought I had any stomach for either. But when you feel like you are are drowning, you’ll pretty much grasp at any life preserver you can find, so I read without judgment. I read, and I read, and I listened to my life coach and did the exercises that she created for me and that the books suggested and I was lucky enough that it worked for me. I know a lot of people aren’t so lucky, or their depression goes deeper, to a stronger chemical level. So if you think that you need something more than some books and a life coach, it’s best to go to see a psychiatrist or your doctor and get whatever help you need. That’s the funny thing about when you go looking for help- once you really say it clearly and out loud that you need it (which is pretty much the hardest part, or is it realizing that you need help in the first place that is the hardest part?), people are usually there to help you find what you need. These were the ones that helped me the most:
disclaimer: I’m not a mental health professional, this is just me as a friend chatting about what worked for me. Also, this is the first post I’m trying out Amazon’s affiliate program, which means that if you click the links for the books and decide to buy something, I think I get a teeny-tiny percentage of Amazon’s profit via Amazon store credit (no additional charges to you at all). I’m not sure if this is something I’ll keep doing, but I’ve linked to a fair number of books recently, and some people suggested it would be worth checking out. So hey, let’s see what happens.
I’m a fan of workbook-style guides, because the exercises made me feel like I was getting some control over my thoughts and my feelings, and they often start in small ways that are really doable. May Cause Miracles: A 40-Day Guidebook of Subtle Shifts for Radical Change and Unlimited Happiness was the one that had the biggest impact, because the daily exercises really were small enough that I could do them even on busy days. Miracles Now: 108 Life-Changing Tools for Less Stress, More Flow, and Finding Your True Purpose is a good book to read after it, as it covers similar territory but in a smaller way, more as a reminder of what you are working on. I’m a convert to the Gabby Bernstein way of thinking, and a large part of it is her pretty awesome youtube channel (which is all free, so if you are considering checking out the books, you should totally go listen/watch some of her videos and get a feel for her perspective). I found that if I was at work or walking around and felt like I needed some reminding of how I wanted to be feeling, I could fire up one of her videos and just listen, and it often helped. The last book on the far right is The Desire Map: A Guide to Creating Goals with Soul by Danielle Laporte. The key point of this workbook is that often we are chasing goals that we think we want, but when we achieve them they feel hollow or somehow off the mark. Her theory is that this is because we aren’t clear on how we want to feel, and that if we start by figuring out what our core desired feelings are, it’s much easier to make choices and set goals that align with how we want to feel. There is a great sound bite on her website, if you want to have a listen to her talk about it.
All three of these books deal in different ways with how your brain, and the habits of your own negative thinking, keep you from feeling happy and feeling good, and often those thoughts crop up once you recognize feeling good- they sneak into your brain and turn you attention to negativity once again. The Big Leap: Conquer Your Hidden Fear and Take Life to the Next Level talks a lot about getting into your Zone of Genius, but ultimately this book is about identifying all the multitude of ways negative thinking holds you back. Breaking The Habit of Being Yourself: How to Lose Your Mind and Create a New One is very similar in the ideology of The Big Leap, but is more science-y in it’s apporach. If you have a hard time reading these kinds of books because they seem too airy-fairy, this one is written by a neuroscientist with a background in biochemistry and all sorts of brain science stuff. So if the only way you’ll belive the power of negtive and postive thinking on your overall being is if it’s backed by scientific facts, this one is for you. And the last one is a classic- A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles of “A Course in Miracles” is perfect for you if you like to read about love, self-forgiveness and God in a non-denominational way (A Course in Miracles, which I haven’t read, has a Christian belief through it, but the author of A Return to Love is Jewish). Williamson is extremely insightful, and this is the kind of book that begs to have you underline bits of it so you can refer back to when feeling blue.
I hope that helps! And if anyone else has other books to recommend, please let me know in the comments!