Books About Anxiety
In my opinion, reading can be one of the best ways to reduce the symptoms of anxiety.
To be perfectly honest, I didn’t read much until my anxiety had hit an all time high.
My anxiety tends to leave me feeling impatient and restless, so the thought of sitting quietly with a book had never occurred to me before. However, when I did eventually start to read more, I found that it took up all of my focus and left me feeling much more relaxed.
To be able to read peacefully, I do tend to need to have a quiet and comfortable environment, in particular on those days where my anxiety at its highest.
Some benefits of reading are that it redirects our focus and helps us shut off our minds from everyday stresses.
Even if you’ve never actually considered yourself to be much of a reader, I encourage you to at least give it a try; you may find it quite therapeutic. There are also many books out there about anxiety, some being educational and others being incredibly relatable.
Below are my top seven books that I believe everyone with anxiety needs to read.
Anxiety for Beginners by Eleanor Morgan
Anxiety for Beginners is not only a guide for those with anxiety but also for those close to them.
Morgan shares her own experiences with anxiety, and the way she has written about those experiences made me feel like I was right there with her and even took me back to some of my own.
Anxiety for Beginners has many moments where you will feel able to relate to Morgan’s experiences and also have you laughing out loud at her thoughts in those moments too.
This is a book I would give to a friend or family member to help them understand what it is that people with anxiety go through.
Our Numbered Days by Neil Hilborn
While this book doesn’t focus on anxiety as a whole, it does have some stunning, thought provoking poems where anxiety is touched on.
I adore Hilborn’s mind and have found myself feeling quite emotional as to how much I can relate to many of his poems, as I think many others do too.
Hilborn has a particular way of looking at life; Hilborn manages to turn even the darkest struggles and challenges into something wonderful.
We’re All Mad Here by Claire Eastham
This book focuses on social anxiety and gives the reader a guide through life, from coping through university to handling social media.
Eastham describes social anxiety in detail while sharing her own experiences and providing tips on how to lessen its effects.
Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson
There aren’t many books out there that are brave enough to combine mental health with humor, but Jenny Lawson does just that. Lawson talks about real experiences with mental illness, depression, and anxiety while also providing hilarious comic relief.
Personally, I found this book to be a breath of fresh air and found myself laughing out loud at the brilliance of Lawson’s humor.
This book is utterly fantastic and one I am always keen to suggest to others.
Loving Someone With Anxiety by Kate N. Thieda
This book is written specifically for the partners of those with anxiety.
Loving Someone With Anxiety aims to help the reader understand what it is their partner goes through and how to provide support while also taking care of their own needs.
Thieda provides some great communication strategies as well as techniques to help relax their partner and reduce their anxieties.
On Edge: A Journey Through Anxiety By Andrea Petersen
Petersen provides a personal insight into her anxieties and worries since childhood, while also looking into the research, which may bring forth new treatments.
Andrea Petersen talks about the genetics of anxiety, non-drug therapies, medications and how anxiety impacts our relationships.
Breaking Mad by Anna Williamson
A guidebook to coping with everyday anxieties.
Simply put, this book is fantastic.
Williamson is just throwing out the same ‘calming tips’ that we’ve heard time and time again; she is providing fresh new techniques. This book is packed with realistic advice, activities and even some quick fix tips for anxiety emergencies.
Reading books about anxiety is not only beneficial in that we can pick up new strategies and techniques in coping, but it also lets us know that we are not alone in this fight.
If, like me, you struggle to get comfortable enough to focus on your reading, below are a few tips that might help:
- Find a quiet space.
- Make yourself as comfortable as possible.
- If background noises are distracting you, try investing in a simple pair of earplugs.
- Give yourself enough time to give the book a chance. At least read the first chapter, if it doesn’t grab your interest, then that is fair enough but try not to give up after only a few sentences.
- Don’t force yourself to read something that isn’t grabbing your attention, try another book.