Self-Help Books

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There are many books about specific types of mental health problems and how they are viewed from a CBT approach to help with understanding and treating your condition.

The Reading Well and Overcoming websites feature several book series that have been found very helpful by both the people suffering from these conditions as well as health professional working with them.

Coping with Trauma

Recovering from Trauma

Deborah Lee and Sophie James

“Recovering from Trauma” uses the groundbreaking Compassion Focused Therapy to help the reader to not only develop a fuller understanding of how we react to trauma but also to deal with any feelings of shame and start to overcome any trauma-related difficulties.”
More info here

Coping with Trauma

An Introduction To Coping With Childhood Trauma

Helen Kennerley

“This useful self-help guide looks at the psychological impact of childhood trauma and offers some helpful strategies, based on CBT, to help the sufferer start on the road to recovery. Also, contains useful information on how to get specialist help. This practical booklet will also be a valuable resource for health professionals and family members.”
More info here

Coping with Trauma

Overcoming Childhood Trauma

Helen Kennerley

“This book will help the sufferer understand the links between past trauma and present difficulties and offers ways to gain control over these problems, allowing the individual to deal with intrusive memories, manage mood swings and build better relationships in adulthood.”
More info here

Coping with Trauma

An Introduction To Coping With Post-Traumatic Stress

Ann Wetmore

“This self-help guide uses CBT strategies to help the reader to change their reactions to the trauma and find new, effective ways of coping with and overcoming traumatic stress. This practical booklet is also an ideal resource for health professionals and careers.”
More info here

Coping with Trauma

Overcoming Traumatic Stress

Claudia Herbert

“This book demonstrates, with practical advice and tested exercises, how to find new, effective ways of coping with, and finally overcoming, traumatic stress.”
More info here

Coping with Trauma

Depersonalisation Disorder (podcast)

Anxiety and Depression Association of America

This podcast can help you better understand reactions linked to disassociation (for example switching off from what’s happening around you).
More info here

Coping with Panic

An Introduction To Coping With Panic

Charles Young

“Written by an experienced practitioner, this introductory booklet explains what panic attacks are and how they make you feel. It will help the reader to understand their symptoms and is ideal as an immediate coping strategy and as a preliminary to fuller therapy.”
More info here

Coping with Low Self-Esteem

Boost Your Confidence

Melanie Fennell

“By recognising what has caused your own low self-esteem and then starting to address negative thoughts and habits that have kept it low, you can gradually build your confidence.”
More info here

Coping with Maternal Mental Health

A Guide to Maternal Mental Health

White Swan Foundation

Pregnancy, miscarriage, stillbirth and the time after the birth of a baby can shake you up emotionally and psychologically. At those times, it is not unusual to have symptoms of bad mental health, even full-blown post-natal depression. This guide will help you identify what is going on and what you can do to get better.
More info here

There are also many online articles that can be helpful.

Artist Sonaksha Iyengar Creates Instagram Series on Unsolicited Mental Health Advice
“Living with a mental illness is tough on its own, but add unsolicited, ignorant advice to the mix, and you can feel alone and misunderstood as well. Sonaksha Iyengar, an artist based in Bengaluru, India, is calling out these ill-advised comments with a new series of illustrations on Instagram.”

Breaking the Stigma & dealing with unhelpful advice

Mental Illness Is Far More Common Than We Knew
New evidence suggests that most people will experience some form of mental illness in their lifetimes, regardless of background.

Breaking the Stigma & dealing with unhelpful advice

6 Unexpected Ways I’ve Healed From Gaslighting Abuse and Learned to Trust Myself Again
Advice gathered from survivors on how to heal from experiences of Gaslighting.

How abusers’ specific behaviour impacts mental health and how to heal from it

Echoism Is the Little-Known Condition that Affects Victims of Narcissistic Abuse
“Echoism typically arises when someone is in a toxic relationship with a narcissist. The narcissist may be their partner, parent, or sibling. Highly sensitive, compassionate, and emotionally intelligent, echoists are extreme people-pleasers.”

How abusers’ specific behaviour impacts mental health and how to heal from it

Mindfulness buffers the relationship between discrimination and depressive symptoms
“The findings [of the research] provide evidence that “mindfulness may be useful for people for preventing depression in individuals with diverse backgrounds and who face discrimination”.

Mental Health and being a person of colour

Black Adolescents Experience Depression Differently
“Black adolescents express depressive symptoms differently than people from other age and racial groups, requiring that clinicians take this into account when developing treatment plans”.

Mental Health and being a person of colour:

What to Do When Anxiety Overwhelms You
Tools for how to cope with anxiety, with a focus on meditation.

Experiences of mental unwellness & learning self-compassion

Online Collections of CBT materials and exercise sheets

Get Self-Help
This website holds extensive collections of explanations and practical exercises for you to work with that help you deal better with the symptoms you are experiencing.
Apart from stress, anxiety and depression it also has tools for managing PTSD, chronic pain, including conditions that are not directly a mental health problem but associated with mental health problems like sleep problems, chronic pain or ADHD.
There are exercise sheets you can print out and work on.

Psychology Tools
This website holds a vast collection of CBT resources divided into exercises for mental health professionals and those for self-help respectively, as well as offering explanations and examples of what the conditions look and feel like.

They are organised to target specific issues you might have, in particular:

Self-esteem issues
Trauma and PTSD FREE

Disclaimer: This guide has not been put together by mental health professionals. It is not intended to be medical advice. It has been crowdsourced by survivors and volunteers of Chayn. Care has been taken in reflecting the experiences and knowledge of people around the world, including therapists but information in this guide should be taken instead of certified medical advice. Please seek professional support.

Getting better & moving on: A guide for mental healing after abuse and trauma by CHAYN is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.