It’s a busy and stressful world we live in, and we’re increasingly turning to books to help us through difficult times. Whether it’s encouraging body positivity, guiding towards a calmer lifestyle, or helping to heal overwrought minds, wellness books can be game changing when it comes to being kinder to our bodies, minds, expectations and emotions.
With so many wellness books available, it’s difficult to know where to start. Here are 6 books we love that really do help to soothe the mind and body.
The Wild Remedy by Emma Mitchell
In 2003, naturalist Emma Mitchell moved from the city to the countryside and began taking walks in the wilderness, documenting her woodland wanders by photographing, collecting and drawing.
As a long-time sufferer of depression, Mitchell found her walks therapeutic; being out in nature, surrounded by plants, trees and animals, had a healing effect on her mind, and recording her discoveries was part of the remedy.
With hand-drawn illustrations and photographs, this beautiful and inspiring diary is a very personal account of Mitchell’s highs and lows, exploring how reconnecting with the natural world is conducive to our wellbeing. (27 Dec, Michael O’Mara)
Beyond The Footpath by Clare Gogerty
The word pilgrim conjures traditional religious and spiritual connotations but modern-day pilgrimage is one of the fastest-growing mindfulness movements, and for good reason.
Clare Gogerty’s Beyond the Footpath is a practical guide for modern pilgrims seeking self-fulfilment and discovery. From ancient paths and mighty mountains, to temples and inner city journeys, Gogerty offers suggestions and tips on walking around the world and being conscious of your environment.
Even if you’re not embarking on some grand, life-altering adventure, it’ll encourage you to be more meditative when out walking day-to-day. (4 April, Piatkus)
Beyond Beautiful by Anuschka Rees
There’s been a real push towards body positivity in recent years, which, in this image conscious world we live in, is never a bad thing. But Anuschka Rees’s Beyond Beautiful promotes something slightly different: body neutrality.
The idea that we don’t have to either hate or love our bodies is refreshing, and Rees’ book addresses issues of fear and insecurity in relation to self-image and the wider societal issues that affect the way we perceive our bodies. She tackles everything from body image myths to beauty standards to how to stop feeling Instagram-inadequate.
This is an empowering and proactive guide to living your best, most confident life. (14 May, Ten Speed Press)
Yang Sheng: The art of Chinese self-healing by Katie Brindle
Katie Brindle’s Yang Sheng goes back to the origins of self-care by teaching us how to harness the ancient philosophy in order to nurture our bodies, minds and spirits. This is a book for people who are overstretched and overtired; who feel the weight of daily life pushing down on them.
Drawing from Chinese medicine, it’s about finding a balance and not implementing rules that actually contribute to stress. There are many different techniques ranging from acupressure and healing crystals to feng shui and learning how to breathe.
It makes for a lovely, genuinely useful coffee table book and a brilliant starting point for anyone keen to learn more about Chinese self-care. (18 April, Hardie Grant)
Dear Universe by Sarah Prout
Just looking at Sarah Prout’s Dear Universe is enough to soothe the soul. Not only is it a beautiful book on the outside but it’s also a wonderful resource for improving emotional wellbeing.
Featuring 200 mini meditations, it helps readers rise above not just fear but anger, loneliness, shock, selfishness, embarrassment and so much more.
It’s perfect for dipping in and out of when you’re feeling overwhelmed by negative experiences, and it celebrates positive thoughts and feelings – something we all need more of. (2 April, Piatkus)
Good Mornings: Morning Rituals for Wellness, Peace and Purpose by Linnea Dunne
From the author of Lagom: The Swedish Art of Balanced Living comes a new wellness book all about how to build life-affirming rituals into your morning routine.
Starting the day off in a positive way is proven not just to enhance your mental health but to benefit your overall productivity too. It might be practicing yoga, sitting outside with nature for a few minutes, meditating, or writing your thoughts down in a journal – everyone’s ritual is different.
Dunne offers advice and guidance but also inspires readers to find a calming, motivating morning ritual that works for you as an individual. (2 May, Gaia)