You're ready to face your anxiety head-on and begin researching answers.
You hope to find the best books on anxiety that will resonate with you and give you the strategies you need to alleviate the chronic discomfort of this mental health challenge.
When you begin your research, you will find hundreds of options out there that promise great results. You can't read them all, so how do you know which ones might be right for you?
Once you find a book that appeals to you, you will want to make sure it is written by someone with credibility and knowledge. The author could be a professional in the field or someone who has experienced (and overcome) anxiety.
You also want to find a book that provides real solutions rather than offering a "quick fix" to solve your problems.
I've narrowed down the search for you so you can feel assured that the book you choose matches your issues and needs.
Here are 22 of the best books on anxiety:
1. First, We Make the Beast Beautiful: A New Journey Through Anxiety by Sarah Wilson
In this book, Sarah Wilson talks about her journey to understanding her own lifelong struggle with anxiety. Throughout her career, Wilson has helped over 1.5 million people live better lives with her book series, I Quit Sugar, and she suffered through anxiety the entire time.
Wilson uses this earnest and engaging book to investigate the triggers and treatments of her anxiety along with the fads that have come and gone.
She interviews other people who suffer from anxiety, mental health professionals, philosophers, researchers, and the Dalai Lama himself, and puts together everything that she learns in light of her own experiences.
Wilson offers relatable explanations describing what it feels like to have anxiety, which can even help people who do not suffer from anxiety to better understand their loved ones who do. To those who live with anxiety themselves, she offers comfort, humor, and useful tips for living a more pleasant life.
Readers have noted that this book has helped them embrace their anxiety as a part of who they are, which then allows them to explore their possibilities for living a richer and fuller life.
This book will give you a no-nonsense approach to dealing with anxiety. While you have been trying your best to get over these unpleasant feelings, it can be tough if you can't stop focusing on past traumas.
Dr. Harper uses humor, patience, and a ton of swearing to explain the neuroscience behind anxiety without letting it fly over your head.
She describes the process of retraining your brain to respond as it should to non-emergency situations that come up in everyday life.
If you're trying to overcome trauma or PTSD, or if you want to be able to calm yourself down in general, this book can help you accomplish that goal and get your life and process of thinking on the right track.
This is a down-to-earth and casual read that is very easy to get through. The conversational tone is easy to understand and will often make you laugh.
3. The Anxiety and Worry Workbook: The Cognitive Behavioral Solution by David A. Clark and Aaron Becl
This workbook is recommended by both therapists and psychiatrists. It is written with a focus on cognitive behavior therapy, which is one proven treatment approach for anxiety.
This book gives you the tools and techniques of cognitive behavior therapy along with worksheets, exercises, and examples that show the authors' decades of experience helping people overcome anxiety.
This workbook is particularly helpful in teaching practical strategies to help you identify your triggers, rationalize your distorted thoughts, and tolerate the situations that you fear one step at a time.
4. Dare: The New Way to End Anxiety and Stop Panic Attacks Fast by Barry McDonagh
This step-by-step guide will teach you how to use the DARE technique to overcome anxiety.
The author uses a counter-intuitive approach to urge you to face your anxiety and panic attacks to get through them.
Many people who have tried other methods that failed have turned to this book and found success. The approach is effective and McDonagh has a warm and intelligent nature that will bring you in and build a sense of trust.
5. The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook by Edmund Bourne
This evidence-based guide is full of effective skills to help treat anxiety.
The author, who is an expert in cognitive-behavioral therapy, will teach you relaxation and breathing techniques, ways to use imagery to desensitize yourself, lessons on how to stop negative self-talk, and positive changes to make to your exercise and nutrition regimen.
Many have found great relief from their anxiety and panic attacks by reading this book. It is often used both by those who are suffering from anxiety and by professionals who are working with patients to help them overcome the disorder.
Lawrence Wallace offers a balanced approach to finding your strength and moving past your anxieties.
He helps you understand what makes your mind work, and shows you how to challenge your intrusive and unwanted thoughts.
He also incorporates spirituality and illustrates how this factor is linked to one's ability to help themself break bad habits and have a more enjoyable life.
Readers appreciate how the author teaches them to follow the steps on their own.
Not only is this book great for people who suffer from anxiety, but it is also helpful for people with depression and chronic stress.
Unlike other treatment programs, this method in this book requires you to have commitment rather than just endless money for one-on-one therapy.
A lot of attention has been focused on mindfulness lately and its effectiveness in decreasing anxiety. The Mindfulness Workbook for Anxiety will give you evidence-based strategies to learn how to apply mindfulness to the daily triggers of anxiety and stress.
The simple techniques outlined in this book are specifically designed to replace the uncomfortable feelings of anxiety with a peaceful mindset.
Readers appreciate the ease of incorporating these exercises into their lives and the author's ability to present the information in a format that is simple to navigate.
This 8-week program is clearly laid out for anyone suffering from anxiety.
8. Don't Feed the Monkey Mind: How to Stop the Cycle of Anxiety, Fear, and Worry by Jennifer Shannon
The "monkey mind" refers to a mind that is constantly moving from branch to branch from fear to safety. It is full of constant chatter and endless anxiety.
In this book, Jennifer Shannon will teach you how to slow down your monkey mind and put an end to your stress through mindfulness techniques, cognitive-behavioral therapy, and acceptance and commitment therapy.
Readers have found this book to be an easy read due to its inclusion of humor and insightful advice. It will help you devise a plan to move forward with your life in a more peaceful manner.
This revolutionary book is helpful for anyone suffering from the wide variety of symptoms that are associated with anxiety.
The author draws from his personal experiences as well as the experiences of other people who suffered from anxiety disorders for years before being able to move past their feelings.
Readers appreciate the quick and easy access this book provides to advice and practical strategies to help simplify the lives of those suffering from anxiety.
This book is also great for people who live with or love someone who suffers from anxiety, as it will help anyone understand the disorder better.
This might be right for you if you are looking to uncover the facts about anxiety rather than personal opinions.
Anxiety in teenagers is on the rise, and this workbook teaches teens simple activities to help overcome anxiety.
It illustrates how to handle the everyday challenges of having a positive self-image as a teen and how to recognize anxious thoughts.
While some of the tasks in this workbook may seem odd at first, they are backed by research and have proven themselves to be effective.
The tools offered in this book can be used throughout life to calm an anxious mind.
If you have a younger teen who is suffering from anxiety who needs extra help dealing with it, this book is a great support tool for you and your child.
11. On Edge: A Journey Through Anxiety by Andrea Petersen
This book offers the personal story of Andrea Petersen and her lifelong struggle with anxiety. Petersen also looks at the biology behind anxiety and the newest research that could lead to new treatments.
She talks about the differences between taking psychoactive drugs to combat anxiety vs. non-drug treatment options, such as biofeedback and exposure therapy.
Petersen also addresses the link between one's genetics and environment and their mental health, consulting well-known neuroscientists and looking back at her own history of mental illness.
Readers have found this book to be relatable and empowering. The honest and compelling stories that Petersen shares will help you feel her vulnerability as a writer and immediately feel her compassion.
This book addresses the signs of anxiety and the differences between a panic attack, social anxiety, and an anxiety disorder.
It aims to teach you how to stop a panic attack and overcome anxiety by explaining the process of anxiety and ways to equip yourself with the necessary strategies to move past these feelings.
Dr. Odessky offers a 6-step program to help you overcome the limiting feelings of anxiety and uses her own experience and knowledge to give you an optimistic outlook and a sense of passion.
Readers have found that this book offers great coping skills to anyone, not only those who suffer from anxiety.
It is common to forget that the foods you eat have a huge impact on your overall health, including your brain chemistry and emotions.
However, your diet makes a big difference in your feelings of anxiety and your ability to stay calm. If you make the right changes to your diet, your health can improve dramatically.
This book offers four unique anti-anxiety diets that are made to help you fix nutritional deficiencies that could be causing your anxiety.
It will teach you how you can enjoy the wide range of foods that help balance emotions and give your body the nutrients it needs to be healthy both mentally and physically.
You will learn how to fuel your body to free your mind from anxiety and have an improved mood, experience better sleep, have fewer food cravings, and enjoy the benefits of optimal health.
Readers enjoy the conversational tone of this book and the author's personal anecdotes.
14. Rewire Your Anxious Brain: How to Use the Neuroscience of Fear to End Anxiety, Panic, and Worry by Catherine Pittman and Elizabeth Karle
This book looks at the neuroscience and research behind anxiety to teach you how various parts of the brain are essential factors in the neuropsychology behind anxiety.
Pittman and Karle make this seemingly complex subject simple by giving specific examples of how you can manage anxiety by tapping into various pathways in your brain.
The authors enable you to feel empowered and motivated to overcome your anxiety as they learn about the psychological process.
You will learn to be resilient as you retrain your brain to react to certain situations. This books offers practical self-assessments and effective techniques to teach you how to overcome your anxiety.
15. The Worry Trick by David Carbonell
This book integrates acceptance and commitment therapy with cognitive behavioral therapy to help you break your cycle of worry.
The techniques offered in this book show you how to see the thoughts behind your anxiety and how avoiding triggering situations can backfire and worsen your symptoms.
This book might be right for you if you want to learn how to observe your anxious thoughts and gain clarity instead of getting tricked to act a certain why by your worrisome brain.
16. The Anxiety Toolkit by Alice Boyes
Are you an over-thinker? Do you tend to always think something negative is going to happen? If so, you're likely dealing with some form of anxiety.
The good news is that you can learn to manage your symptoms of anxiety, including hesitation, fear of criticism, and rumination.
In this book, Dr. Boyes teaches you evidence-based tools commonly used in therapy clinics that you can use in everyday life.
No matter how severe your anxiety is, this book will teach you how anxiety works, useful strategies to help you overcome mental roadblocks, and give you the confidence that you need to realize you have all of the tools to succeed in your life.
17. Peace of Mindfulness: Everyday Rituals to Conquer Anxiety and Claim Unlimited Inner Peace by Barrie Davenport
Peace of Mindfulness will help show you how you can benefit by incorporating mindfulness into your life.
Learning mindfulness techniques will help you live a more tranquil life, especially if you are living with anxiety.
The skills that are taught in this book are meant to meet you where you are in your journey right now and work with you to improve your mental health and reduce stress.
Readers appreciate how the author is able to write in a way that instills confidence in them and offers them practical, easy-to-apply skills to reduce the feelings of anxiety.
After reading this book, you will understand the benefits of mindfulness/mindfulness-quotes">mindfulness and understand the techniques that you need to know as a successful part of your anxiety treatment.
18. My Age of Anxiety: Fear, Hope, Dread, and the Search for Peace of Mind by Scott Stossel
Using his own struggles with anxiety, Stossel gives you a history of the efforts to understand this condition from various perspectives, including medical, cultural, philosophical, and experiential.
He begins with the earliest medical reports from Hippocrates and moves all the way through to the most recent research by neuroscientists and geneticists.
Stossel mentions famous people who struggled with anxiety, along with his own personal story. He goes over the countless psychotherapies, medications, and various treatments that have been developed throughout the years to fight anxiety and clearly depicts the toll that anxiety can take on a person.
However, he also explores how people who are affected by anxiety can find ways to manage it.
Readers have found this book to be honest and clear. Many appreciate the author's light-handed approach to the subject and his ability to incorporate humor.
Author Hattie Cooper has lived with anxiety for years. She presents advice to you as a friend who has been through the same struggles.
She also teaches immediate and simple strategies to use for overcoming your social anxiety disorder to improve your confidence.
For the millions who suffer from social anxiety disorder, avoiding opportunities in life is common.
However, it is possible to move past social anxiety and re-engage in life.
This book will give you practical tips from someone who knows what social anxiety feels like as well as techniques to practice in the moment.
Readers love how this book goes through the thought process of social anxiety disorder.
This book is easy to relate to if you suffer from this form of anxiety, as it helps you learn how to reframe your thinking.
20. Anxious in Love: How to Manage Your Anxiety, Reduce Conflict, and Reconnect with Your Partner by Carolyn Daitch and Lissah Lorberbaum
If you have chronic anxiety, it is likely difficult to handle the everyday conflicts that may come up in a relationship.
No matter what your level of commitment is, anxiety can distance you from your partner. However, there are some steps you can take to better handle your anxiety-fueled reactions that may impact your relationship.
As experts on anxiety disorders, the authors of this book offer easy-to-use methods for reducing anxieties and building more communication in your relationship.
You will learn how to stay relaxed when conflict arises, understand your partner’s perspective, and feel more independent.
By changing your reaction to triggers, you can focus on the time you are spending with your partner without dealing with the impacts of anxiety.
Readers have found this book to be great for people who are in a relationship that is affected by anxiety, whether you are the person suffering, or you are the partner of someone with anxiety.
This book, currently in its second edition, offers a new approach to facing anxiety, fears, and life in general.
You will discover a powerful set of tools to gain freedom from the debilitating thoughts of fear, trauma, and worry.
This empowering book is based on a comprehensive approach to mental health and wellness that is called "acceptance and commitment" therapy. The author provides you with exercises to help create your own sense of happiness and peace of mind.
Readers have found the authors' writing style to be both gentle and reassuring. The authors clearly understand the thought process behind anxiety, and readers have had success by following the directions spelled out in this book.
The author of this book began her studies of psychology when she was suffering from debilitating anxiety that was greatly impacting her life.
Zupko wanted to find more than a temporary solution to her symptoms, so she began studying mindfulness meditation and any breakthrough therapeutic approaches to help treat anxiety.
In her book, Zupko shares what she learned and guides you through the same process, helping you undo your anxiety-based thinking and replace it with mindful thinking.
Readers have found Zupko's approach to be healing whether they are dealing with typical, everyday stress or debilitating anxiety.
This book will offer you a new method of healing from fear and anxiety instead of just learning how to live with it.
The recommendations that are given in this book are easy to understand and implement.
Hopefully, you have come across a book on this list that resonates with you. Read one or two out and see what you learn about your own anxiety and how to best treat it.
Your goal is to ease your anxiety and start implementing helpful strategies that will allow you to live in a more peaceful way.