7 must read self-improvement books
Mental Health

7 Must Read Self-Improvement Books (From A Therapist)

March 1, 2022

Ryann Nicole

Hi, I’m Ryann.

Your Not-So-Average Food Freedom Therapist & Virtual Coach. As a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC), Certified Nutritionist with a BA in Psychology, and a MA in Professional Counseling, yes I do a little of the "so how does that make you feel".

But my ultimate goal is to provide you with the resources you need, in an easy-to-understand way, on healing your disordered relationship with food and your body. 

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Looking for a new self-improvement book? I am one of those people that LOVE self-improvement books. I feel we can never know enough about self-improvement, and it's always fascinating to hear others' perspectives and knowledge on healing and growth. Although I could give you a list of 100s of self-improvement books I recommend, I recommend starting with one of these!

01. The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz

“The belief system is like a Book of Law that rules our mind. Without question, whatever is in that Book of Law, is our truth.” pg. 9

Why you should read this book: Behaviors follow beliefs. Therefore whatever I believe (my ‘Book of Law') is what will be true for me and how I will behave. So if I want to change my behaviors, I must start by changing my beliefs. But this is not easy!! (Especially if we do not understand our beliefs or the power of our beliefs). Don Miguel Ruiz outlines 4 simple agreements to follow to begin challenging your beliefs and creating new truths for yourself!

Click HERE to purchase.

02. I Thought It Was Just Me (but it isn't) by Brene Brown

“Compassion is not a virtue — it is a commitment. It's not something we have or don't have — it's something we choose to practice.”

Why you should read this self-improvement book: We cannot live positive lives with negative thoughts about ourselves. Compassion toward yourself is not something you have or don't have. It's something you choose to practice. Brene Brown does an incredible job at unpacking the shame spiral that keeps us feeling like we are undeserving of compassion and what to do to break out of that.

Click HERE to purchase.

03. Untamed by Glennon Doyle

“‘Easy' buttons are the things that appear in front of us that we want to reach for peace they temporarily take us out of our pain and stress. They do not work in the long run because what they actually do is help us abandon ourselves. ‘Easy' buttons take us to fake heaven. Fake heaven always turns out to be hell.” p. 278

Why you should read this self-improvement book: Although it doesn't technically qualify as self-improvement because it is Glennon Doyle's story, Glennon offers so much wisdom in this book. I can't help but consider it a self-improvement book. If you've ever felt like your story was too dark to change, if you were too deep to do something different, or too far along the ‘wrong' path to change, this book will offer you a different perspective.

Click HERE to purchase

04. The Subtle Art of Not Giving A F*ck

“..our brain is always trying to make sense of our current situation based on what we already believe and have already experienced. Every new piece of information is measured against the values and conclusions we already have. As a result, our brain is always biased toward what we feel to be true in that moment” p. 125

Why you should read this self-improvement book: Mark Manson is the king of calling our behaviors as they are and reframing them in the hardest (yet most needed) truth. If your life is currently based on the options of others (ie, every decision you make is based on ‘what will others think of me?'), this book is for you. Mark Manson talks you through your values and how this may be an error in our personality but rather a symptom of a misguided value system.

*Warning there IS strong language in this book. If you find curse words offensive or triggering, this might not be the book for you.

Click HERE to purchase

05. Burnout by Emily and Amelia Nagoski

“‘Wellness' is the freedom to move fluidly through the cycles of being human. Wellness is thus not a state of being; it is a state of action.” p. 28

Why you should read this self-improvement book: Simply because there is no way to escape the stress, and it's not the stress that is the problem, but rather not knowing how to manage the stress that is. Emily and Amelia Nagoski dive deep into the stress cycle, unpacking everything there is to know about stress and how to manage it. If you've ever felt like you were the problem, you were too much, or you just needed to ‘suck it up, this book is for you!

Click HERE to purchase

06. The Mountain Is You by Brianna Wiest

“It is not that brave to say you love your body only after you've contorted it to precisely what you want it to look like. It is not that brave to say you don't care about possessions when you have access to everything in the world. It's not that brave to say you aren't motivated by money what you have enough of it. When you only find happiness and peace after you've fixed every flaw, mastered every challenge, and are living decidedly in the ‘after' part of the picture of your life, you have not resolved anything. You have only reinforced the idea that you cannot be okay until everything is perfect.” p. 147

Why you should read this self-improvement book: Brianna Wiest is a genius, and how she explains self-sabotage in this book is a gift to us all. It is one thing to know your self-sabotage. It is another to understand where the sabotage is coming from and how to break out of the sabotaging cycle. If you've ever struggled with self-sabotage, this book is for you!

Click HERE to purchase

07. Intuitive Eating by Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch

“Sometimes just the thought that you will overeat is enough to actually make you overeat.” p. 115

Why you should read this self-improvement book: Whether you struggle with food or not, Evelyne Trible and Elyse Resch offer more than an approach to eating in this book. This book sets the foundation for living in a way that allows you to feel your best emotionally and physically, despite what other people do with food and their bodies. It allows you to quiet the noise and embrace a new perspective

Click HERE to purchase

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