Self-Help Books For Depression & Anxiety That Actually Helped Me

Overcoming Depression NaturallySelf-Help Book Reviews
Self-Help Books For Depression
October 27, 2016

I’ve recently come across a newly published book on depression written by a Polish celebrity. Being full of New-Age waffle and promoting mental health stereotypes, it turned out to be so bad that it inspired me to list for you some of the good books that tackle this issue. It’s not very likely to get translated into English soon, so I wouldn’t worry about that, but on Amazon, there are plethora of other self-help books for depression and anxiety and it’s hard to choose something that will actually help.

As I am completely addicted to reading, I accepted the challenge to read them all. This post is going to be updated once in a while each time I find something worth recommending to you.


Self-Help Books For Depression

The Mindful Way Through Depression: Freeing Yourself from Chronic Unhappiness (Book & CD)

by Mark Williams, John Teasdale, Zindel Segal & Jon Kabat-Zinn

Among all the self-help books for depression, The Mindful Way is an outstanding publication that truly lifts the spirit. The book, written by four cognitive therapy and mindfulness experts, including bestselling author Jon Kabat-Zinn, takes a cognitive-behavioral approach combined with the Eastern wisdom of meditation masters.

According to the authors, we are stuck in the “thinking” and “doing” modes, numbing our emotions and distracting ourselves to escape despair. This strategy may work on a short-term, but to free oneself from chronic unhappiness it is necessary to switch to the “being” mode of our minds. That’s where mindfulness comes into play. The Mindful Way will teach you how to focus on the present moment and your emotions in a non-judgmental way in order to overcome despair and develop psychological resilience in the face of life’s adversities.

The Mindful Way includes a CD with guided meditations led by the gentle and familiar voice of Jon Kabat-Zinn.

Check reviews here.


The Mindful Way Workbook: An 8-Week Program to Free Yourself from Depression and Emotional Distress

by Mark Williams, John Teasdale, Zindel Segal & Jon Kabat-Zinn

Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy has been clinically tested and proven to be an effective treatment for depression worldwide. Written by the same quartet of experts as the previous one, this workbook is complementary to the Mindful Way through Depression. It provides even more practical tips and exercises for your mindfulness practice aimed at learning new ways to respond to your thoughts and feelings, thus improving your satisfaction with life the way it is.

Specific mindfulness practices to try each week, thought-provoking questions, useful tools for keeping track of your progress, and an MP3 CD with guided meditations (also available as audio downloads) make it a great help for those suffering from depression.

Check reviews here.


The Depression Cure: The 6-Steps Program To Beat Depression Without Drugs

by Stephen Ilardi, Ph. D.

In his book, Stephen Ilardi proposes six simple lifestyle changes, which will boost the effectiveness of your depression treatment and allow you to prevent its relapse. The therapeutic lifestyle change dwells on the assumption that being equal to our ancestors in terms of genetics, we live in a world that our bodies and minds haven’t evolved for. But there are things we can do about it. Each step in thoroughly explained and rooted in scientific evidence. Most changes that Ilardi suggests are simple and easy to implement, and they greatly improve the quality of life.

At the end of the book, you will find a program which will help you introduce all the improvements one step at a time.

I’ve found this book extremely helpful and surprisingly accurate in my depression treatment. I hope it will help you too.

Check reviews here.

Self-Help Books For Anxiety


The Worry Cure: Seven Steps To Stop Worry From Stopping You

by Robert L. Leahy, Ph.D.

This book is recommended for those suffering from generalized anxiety disorder, AKA “what-if-disease”. Paradoxically, we engage in safety behaviors to feel better and overcome worry, but it is not only counterproductive, but also works against us. The Worry Cure will provide you with the tools necessary to determine your “worry profile” and alter your toxic thought patterns. While combating your fear of failure, you will learn to accept uncertainty and imperfection.

Check reviews here.



This list of self-help books for depression is just the beginning, so stay tuned for more soon! 

What I don’t recommend, however, is limiting yourself to these books, especially if you are severely depressed. Depression is a pretty serious health issue which untreated may lead to death. So follow the advice of your psychiatrist and stick to the medication prescribed to you!

You Might Also Enjoy Reading

Depression Negative Thinking Patterns
“It’s Only In Your Head”: Depressing Thoughts & How To Tame Them
February 15, 2017
How To Deal With Depression
How To Deal With Depression: 30 Things I Do To Fence The Demons Off
January 29, 2017
Meditation for Depression and anxiety
Meditation For Depression: 5 Reasons Why You Should Try It Yourself
December 8, 2016


  1. Ed says:

    Thank you for your article. I’ve read some of the books you’ve listed and will now read the others. Hope and Help for Your Nerves by Claire Weeks is my all time favorite for anxiety.

  2. Darren says:

    Feel really bad for those who are suffering from depression, but my personal favorite book was by Dale Carnegie. Which talked about how to stop worrying. I recommend you add it to the list because while his other book “How to win friends and influence people” is really big but his other one on how to stop worrying and start living really helped me.

    Biggest thing I realized is that you should put a “stop loss” on worries and train yourself to stop caring so much if the thing you’re looking at isn’t worth worrying about.

  3. Ivana says:

    Hi! thanks for making this website. Since i can’t buy all of these books (yet) which one would you recomend reading first?

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INFP. A sensitive, yet adventurous soul on a never-ending quest for the meaning of life and the reasons behind human behavior. Sometimes, a I'm frolicking unicorn pooping rainbows. On other occasions, I can be as deep as the Mariana Trench. After some psychotherapy and medication, I am seeing my depression as a source of positive changes and self growth. If I could choose any superpower I wanted, it would be healing.

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