Best Books on Personal Care and Mental Health


Poet Joseph Addison once said that “reading is for the mind is what exercise is for the body” – and many studies have shown that opening a book can sharpen your focus, reduce stress, and help you improve. help to sleep better.

Emily Ballesteros, a burnout management coach in Seattle, considers reading her favorite act of self-care. “It encourages you to slow down and focus on one thing,” she told CNBC Make It. “It’s almost impossible to read a book while you’re doing the dishes, for example – you have to give it your full attention, and I love it.”

Reading can be especially helpful during the winter holidays, because not only can it improve your mood, Ballesteros says, but it can also teach you how to live a happier, healthier life in 2022. Here are her five favorite books on the subject. mental health and self-care:

1. “Essentialism: the disciplined pursuit of less”

By Greg McKeown

What can you give up in your life to be happier?

In his book, McKeown, a leadership and business strategist, teaches readers the secret to success without burnout: Be very clear about what you think is essential, and don’t overthink or overwork yourself.

Ballesteros calls “essentialism” an “easy read” and his “first recommendation” for someone who suffers from burnout and has lost sight of what is important to them in their life.

“The book prompts you to think about what is really essential for you to be able to live your most fulfilling life, not just for you to tick all those boxes that you might not even want to tick,” she says.

2. “Do nothing: how to break with overwork, excess and lack of life”

By Celeste Headlee

This one has a lot of famous fans, including “Eat, Pray, Love” author Elizabeth Gilbert, who said Headlee’s writing could “save lives.”

“Do Nothing” is an in-depth investigation into the roots of capitalism, work and our obsession with productivity. He encourages readers to invest in peace, recreation, and relationships.

Headlee points out, for example, that people worked with the sun – then the invention of candles and light bulbs made it possible for people to work much later in the day. “Work started to follow us everywhere,” notes Ballesteros.

This book “is less action-oriented, but it’s a useful reminder that we’re not supposed to work that way, where we’re constantly overwhelmed, because different things always demand our time and energy,” says Ballesteros.

3. “Borders: when to say yes, how to say no to take control of your life”

By Henry Cloud

If you love people and find it hard to say “no” then this book is for you.

Psychologist Henry Cloud explores the science behind setting limits to help readers unlearn the guilt that keeps them from setting limits in their lives. It also offers tools and talking points to better manage your limits.

“’Boundaries’ is a good practical guide for people who don’t know how to set boundaries,” says Ballesteros. “It also reminds you that you are not responsible for how people react to your limits, and that it doesn’t matter if certain limits bother people – which is a message that a lot of people need to know. ‘hear.”

4. “High performance clothes: how extraordinary people become like this”

By Brendon Burchard

Making the decision to change your life can seem like an empowering one, but taking the necessary steps to do so can often lead to confusion, overwhelming, and fear. You might ask yourself, “Where do I start? Or “Is that fair?” ”

Burchard, a performance coach, has spent three years and nearly a million dollars studying top performing students to determine the six habits everyone should adopt to optimize their personal and professional lives.

“It’s a great combination of engaging stories and evidence of how developing these habits has made these people more effective,” Ballesteros said. Some of Burchard’s tips include showing courage, recharging your batteries throughout the day, and setting clear milestones to achieve goals.

5. “Atomic clothes: an easy and proven way to create good habits and break bad ones”