I wasn’t keen on reading when I was younger but during the lock-down I’ve found it an invaluable pastime that has boosted my well-being.
Reading not only calms me down, the books I’ve chosen include tips and lessons that have really helped my mental health.
Here are my favourite reads that promote well-being and can help you through the lock-down.
What A Time To Be Alone
Written by Chidera Eggerue, aka fashion blogger The Slumflower, What A Time To Be Alone tells you how to empower yourself in a difficult world. Eggerue focuses on three aspects – learning to love yourself, letting go of those who treat you badly, and finding togetherness with others.
It is a fantastic read for young women and anyone who wants to make sense of toxic relationships and why people behave the way they do. It’s a reflection of them, not us.
The pages are beautifully illustrated with original artwork and brought to life with insightful African proverbs from Eggerue’s Nigerian mother.
The Life-Changing Magic Of Not Giving A F**k
This critically acclaimed book by Sarah Knight teaches you how to “stop spending time you don’t have doing things you don’t want to do with people you don’t like”. Sarah encourages the reader to set up a “f**k budget”, which is key to working out where to focus time and energy.
It’s a must-read for busy people who find there aren’t enough hours in the day and contains handy skills to learn during the lock-down.
Good Vibes, Good Life
Vex King’s Good Vibes, Good Life is another fantastic read that has taken social media by storm. It features short chapters and simple sketches. The book focuses on self-love, learning to respect yourself, practising self-care, setting boundaries, and cultivating positive lifestyle habits such as meditation.
This is one of my favourite books and I was lucky enough to bump into King in my local supermarket – it must have happened for a reason!
Reasons To Stay Alive
I’ve included two books by Matt Haig on this list as I think he’s a brilliant author who promotes well-being superbly.
Having come close to taking his life aged 24, Haig writes about his experiences with depression. Reasons To Stay Alive is aimed at fellow sufferers and points out things people should be looking forward to. He often writes moving hypothetical conversations with his younger self, telling him experiences he has yet to have.
Notes On A Nervous Planet
Haig’s follow-up, Notes On A Nervous Planet, focuses on anxiety and depicts the world as an interconnected nervous network on the brink of crashing.
It’s another great read and resonates with our current world. Was the crash a prediction of the pandemic? The pace of life has certainly slowed since the outbreak began.
I’ve chosen something a bit different to finish my list. I met Shelley Knight, author of Positive Changes, at a death cafe, which encourages people to talk about bereavement.
Knight worked as a chemotherapy nurse for many years and much of her book includes lessons she learned from people at the end of their lives.
The book contains nuggets of wisdom and you can turn to any page to gain inspiration. Positive Changes is definitely worth a read in these testing times.
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