Looking to change your life? Whether it’s physical, emotional or spiritual change you seek, these books may have some answers. If you’re seeking to enlighten, enlarge or explore your mind, check out our Mind & Body section for a more comprehensive range of books.
I think all of us at some time in our lives when we reach a certain age worry a little about cancer. I think the thought, “how will I react” crosses our minds occasionally. That this brave lady chooses to make her ordeal so public, she produced video diaries and tweets and now her written diary, has helped thousands. At the end of the book she encloses some messages of thanks, a few from those who didn’t make it. It is tear-jerking but it is also laced with humour. Throughout, whenever possible, she kept working, collecting the kids from school and running her hectic household with the enormous support of her wonderful partner. During the end stages of thirty sessions of chemo, she had to drive forty-odd miles round trip between work and school collection for a ten minute appointment her local hospital couldn’t do. Well she was certainly a fighter, although that is not what she calls herself. She believed talking about it really helped alleviate the fear and despair. She was diagnosed shortly after she started hosting a daily news and current affairs show for BBC2 and takes us through her fascinating work as well as the 301 days of treatment. A brave lady.
Each of these impressive women, including actress Romola Garai and comedian Francesca Martinez, has a tale to tell and an experience to share. Empowering, engaging and unapologetically impassioned, their incisive observations will make you think, reflect - and kick serious ass. These are life lessons for women, by women.
I wrote this book with a little help from a monk, who explains how the mind works, and also gives some mindfulness exercises, and a neuroscientist who explains what makes us 'us' in the brain. We answer every question you've ever had about: evolution, thoughts, emotions, the body, addictions, relationships, kids, the future and compassion. How to be Human is extremely funny, true and the only manual you'll need to help you upgrade your mind as much as you've upgraded your iPhone.
Suffering from depression but desperate for 'normality', Rachel Cullen found herself in failing relationships, the wrong career and a reliance on alcohol and chocolate to get her through each day. Stuck in an endless cycle of mental misery, she put on a pair of old trainers. She'd never been able to think of herself as a 'runner' before, and the first time she forced herself out the door, she knew it would hurt. Everywhere. She just didn't realise how much it would heal her, too. Interspersed with Rachel's real diary entries, from teenage non-runner to London Marathon finisher (just months after giving birth), she questions if she really can outrun her demons.
A self-help book for our modern age, using boundaries to create a mentally and physically healthier you. In this 24/7 world, psychotherapist Jennie Miller and journalist Victoria Lambert have initiated a four step programme using boundaries to firstly focus on yourself, followed by the workplace, love, and family. Exercises, practical tips, and explanations sit side by side, supporting, and stimulating new thoughts and feelings. I found myself turning to the chapters that resonated most clearly with me, even those that didn’t connect to my personal situation, I still found fascinating. It is interesting to note in the conclusion, that Victoria found the writing of this book with Jennie, incredibly valuable and fulfilling. Boundaries just makes so much sense, it really is an encouraging read, teeming with practical, useful and helpful tips. ~ Liz Robinson
With mindful, conscious movement, you can gain phenomenal core and full-body strength, increased flexibility and even lose weight, all without leaving the house. In just 10 minutes a day and with no specialist equipment, you can build a fun and achievable home exercise routine tailored to your fitness and flexibility level. Inspired by yoga practitioners and Olympic gymnasts, and in consultation with leading figures from both fields, Roger has developed a simple but highly effective set of exercises known as the Frampton Method, designed to de-restrict your body and help you reach optimum strength and flexibility with no need for any kind of equipment, weights or gym membership. There is also a thorough explanation of the philosophy and science behind the Frampton Method, plus hacks for incorporating it into your day-to-day life, this book will inspire you to put down the weights, reclaim your body and achieve a level of fitness you've only ever dreamed of.
The Economists' Diet outlines a straightforward, sustainable path for changing your eating habits. By combining economic principles, real-world data and their own personal experiences, this guide teaches you how to control your impulses to overeat and learn how to approach food in a healthier way. Payne and Barnett provide simple solutions that you can use to achieve lasting results, without extreme dieting or giving up your favourite foods. By applying economic concepts, such as supply and demand, budgeting and abundance, The Economists' Diet is a unique and effective way to lose weight - and successfully keep it off.
Shortlisted for the Costa Book Awards 2017, Costa Biography Award Heart surgery is by its very nature a high-risk business and as Professor Stephen Westaby says ‘the grim reaper sits on your shoulder’, but when it is successful it is transformative, to say the least. With his 11,000 heart operations behind him Professor Stephen Westaby has been at the forefront of the advances in heart surgery for the last 35 years. Through his boundary-pushing, ethics-bending sometimes maverick approach he has helped make highly radical techniques, with a pretty poor chance of success, mainstream treatments for once fatal conditions.Fragile Lives is a candid and affecting biography, taking the reader to the heart of the operating theatre and into the lives of the patients whose courage help forge a path to safer and more effective heart surgery for us all. The Costa Judges say: ‘A powerful, engaging and passionate memoir from a surgical pioneer.’
The Little Book of Happiness shows you how to live in the moment, flourish as an individual and improve your wellbeing. Through over 150 uplifting and practical tips, inspirational quotes and straight forward exercises, learn how to let go, find true bliss and reclaim your smile to help you to live a happier life.
Whether you long to live with less stress, reduce anxiety, find the confidence to follow your dreams or simply find more happiness and meaning in your everyday life, Thrive Through Yoga will take you on a journey towards health, strength and freedom. Thrive Through Yoga unites ancient wisdom with modern psychology to create a revolutionary route to freedom from the anxieties and worries of 21st-century living.
Whether you're training for a marathon, a half-marathon, an ultra-distance event or just looking to improve your parkrun time, what you eat makes all the difference. This is the ultimate nutrition guide and cookbook for runners, packed with easy, delicious recipes and practical eating advice on how to prepare for 5k, 10k, half-marathons, marathons and ultra-races.
Michelin-starred chef Tom Kerridge has been developing top recipes for nearly three decades and knows how to make things taste good. He also understands how much willpower it takes to shift unhealthy excess weight, because he has lost over 11 stone in the last four years by following a low-carb diet. Now Tom is turning his attention to helping food-lovers who have chosen a lower-calorie diet as their own route to weight-loss. This is a lower-calorie diet with a difference - it's based on hunger-satisfying portions of delicious, lower-calorie dishes that taste amazing. The focus is on the food that we can and should be eating to lose weight, which is easy to make and won't make you feel as though you are missing out.
Read, Learn, Improve
We all need a little direction sometimes and this section is crammed full of great ideas for ways of improving your outlook, in all aspects of your wellbeing. Help from the shelf. From tips for good nutrition and taking care of your body (Optimism: Reflections on a Life of Action by Bob Brown) to coping with all the emotional situations in life, relationships, bereavements, stress, depression (Mind Whispering: A New Map to Freedom from Self-defeating Emotional Habits by Tara Bennett-Goleman). Discover the potential you have for being the ‘you’ you’ve always wanted to be or the ‘you’ you had no idea was in there.
Take a look at our monthly recommendations to find exactly what you’re looking for. Bear in mind though (and even ‘body and spirit’ too …), that just ‘reading’ them may not be enough. There’ll be homework!