Thought Catalog
March 14, 2017

15 Books That Healed My Anxiety (From Someone Who Once Hated Reading)

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Andrew Branch

“If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking.”
— Haruki Murakami

Gratitude by Oliver Sacks

“I cannot pretend I am without fear. But my predominant feeling is one of gratitude. I have loved and been loved; I have been given much and I have given something in return.” — Oliver Sacks


2. Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl

“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms — to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.” — Viktor Frankl


3. Radical Acceptance by Tara Brach

“Pain is not wrong. Reacting to pain as wrong initiates the trance of unworthiness. The moment we believe something is wrong, our world shrinks and we lose ourselves in the effort to combat the pain.” — Tara Brach


4. The Obstacle is the Way by Ryan Holiday

“It’s okay to be discouraged. It’s not okay to quit. To know you want to quit but to plant your feet and keep inching closer until you take the impenetrable fortress you’ve decided to lay siege to in your own life — that’s persistence.” — Ryan Holiday


5. The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

“I don’t live in either my past or my future. I’m interested only in the present. If you can concentrate always on the present, you’ll be a happy man. Life will be a party for you, a grand festival, because life is the moment we’re living now.” — Paulo Coelho


6. Love Yourself Like Your Life Depends on It by Kamal Ravikant

“So I return to the question, “if I loved myself, truly and deeply, what would I do?” The answer comes easy: I’d fly. Fly as high as I possibly can. Then, I’d fly higher.” — Kamal Ravikant


7. Waking Up by Sam Harris

“If, like many people, you tend to be vaguely unhappy much of the time, it can be very helpful to manufacture a feeling of gratitude by simply contemplating all the terrible things that have not happened to you, or to think of how many people would consider their prayers answered if they could only live as you are now. The mere fact that you have the leisure to read this book puts you in very rarefied company. Many people on earth at this moment can’t even imagine the freedom that you currently take for granted.” — Sam Harris


8. Full Catastrophe Living by Jon Kabat-Zinn

“It is not that mindfulness is the “answer” to all life’s problems. Rather, it is that all life’s problems can be seen more clearly through the lens of a clear mind.” — Jon Kabat-Zinn


9. The Four Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss

“The manifesto of the dealmaker is simple: Reality is negotiable.” — Tim Ferriss


10. How Proust Can Change Your Life by Alain De Botton

“There are few things humans are more dedicated to than unhappiness. Had we been placed on earth by a malign creator for the exclusive purpose of suffering, we would have good reason to congratulate ourselves.” — Alain De Botton


11. Play it Away by Charlie Hoehn

A Step-by-Step guide Charlie used to heal his anxiety in 30 days. This book gave me confidence that I could heal myself!


12. How to Stop Worrying and Start Living by Dale Carnegie

The most practical book on conquering worry and anxiety I have ever read.

“One of the most tragic things I know about human nature is that all of us tend to put off living. We are all dreaming of some magical rose garden over the horizon — instead of enjoying the roses that are blooming outside our windows today.” — Dale Carnegie


13. Status Anxiety by Alain de Botton

“Wealth is not an absolute. It is relative to desire. Every time we yearn for something we cannot afford, we grow poorer, whatever our resources. And every time we feel satisfied with what we have, we can be counted as rich, however little we may actually possess.” — Alain de Botton


14. The Book of Awakening The Book of Awakening by Mark Nepo

“It seems there are two basic ways to feel the fullness of life, and both arise from the authenticity of our relationships. One is from our love of life, and the other is from our love of each other.” — Mark Nepo


15. Anything You Want by Derek Sivers (audio)

“Don’t be on your deathbed someday, having squandered your one chance at life, full of regret because you pursued little distractions instead of big dreams.” — Derek Sivers TC mark

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