Below are some books, and a few websites, that may be helpful. I have a reason for recommending each of them, though I have not read each myself. Most if not all are consistent with my approach to psychotherapy and marital therapy, though I may not agree with everything in any particular book. Also, most of the authors have written other related books; if you google the books and/or authors, you may opt for other books by the same authors. Finally, of course there are many other great books on these and other topics related to psychotherapy and emotional wellbeing; the ones I list below are just some of the first ones that come to mind. (I hope to add to this list as my time permits.)
Also, I don’t recommend any of these books in place of psychotherapy, though they may help people with or without therapy. If you are considering getting help in the Madison WI area and opt to come see me for therapy, we can discuss the possible benefits of reading one or more of these books.
First, here is a link to a list of 50 top-rated self-help books by the National Register of Health Service Psychologists, a national organization of psychologists of which I am a member (links were operational as of November 27, 2015):
www.nationalregister.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/trr_spring12_norcross_III_Table2.pdf , with topics identified; and here is a bit about the National Register list:
Next, here is a list of popular internet mental health resources:
Links and Resources
Finally, here is my list. Some of these books are on the National Register list. Also, the categories are somewhat overlapping. Books within a category are listed alphabetically by title (“the” doesn’t count). Happy, helpful reading!
An Emotionally Focused Workbook for Couples: The Two of Us, Veronica Kallos-Lilly and Jennifer Fitzgerald
The 5 Love Languages, Gary Chapman
Getting the Love You Want: A Guide for Couples (20th Anniversary Edition), Harville Hendrix
Passionate Marriage: Keeping Love and Intimacy Alive in Committed Relationships, David Schnarch
(addresses sexual as well as emotional intimacy, and includes sexually explicit material)
The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work, John M. Gottman and Nan Silver
Full Catastrophe Living, Jon Kabat-Zinn
How to Meditate: A Practical Guide to Making Friends with Your Mind, Pema Chödrön
Radical Acceptance, Tara Brach
Search Inside Yourself, Chade-Meng Tan
Cognitive-Behavioral Help for Anxiety and Depression:
The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook, Edmund J. Bourne
Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy, David D. Burns
Learned Optimism, Martin Seligman
The Mindfulness and Acceptance Workbook for Anxiety: A Guide to Breaking Free from Anxiety, Phobias, and Worry Using Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, John Forsyth and Georg Eifert
("Acceptance and Commitment Therapy", or ACT, is an interesting and helpful combination of "Cognitive - Behavioral"
and "Mindfulness" approaches.)
Some Websites for Anxiety: (These websites were operational as of November 27, 2015. When you click the links below, they will open in a new window.)
(A series of articles about anxiety, one of which I recommend specifically below.)
(A mindfulness-based approach to intrusive thoughts: specifically compulsive thoughts, but also useful for addictive urges and
other unpleasant thoughts.)
(Christine Korol, a Canadian Ph.D., offers lots of useful information, including links here to free, engaging, easy-to-watch videos.
I recommend them!)
(Non-profit with great information; see also links at bottom of page to "Therapy for Anxiety Disorders" and "How to Stop Worrying")
For People with Chronic/Longstanding Problems with Emotions, Behavior, and Relationships (including help with managing emotions and “self-soothing”):
The Dialectical Behavior Therapy Skills Workbook: Practical DBT Exercises for Learning Mindfulness, Interpersonal Effectiveness, Emotional Regulation & Distress Tolerance, by Matthew McKay and Jeffrey C. Wood
Healing The Child Within: Discovery and Recovery for Adult Children of Dysfunctional Families, Charles L. Whitfield M.D.
Reinventing Your Life: The Breakthough Program to End Negative Behavior...and FeelGreat Again, Jeffrey E. Young and Janet S.
Seeking Safety: A Treatment Manual for PTSD and Substance Abuse, Lisa M. Najavits
(especially for help with self-soothing)
Skills Training Manual for Treating Borderline Personality Disorder, Marsha M. Linehan
(intended for therapists, but, again, has useful chapters on emotional regulations and self-soothing)
Relaxation and Stress Management:
Conscious Breathing: Breathwork for Health, Stress Release, and Personal Mastery, Gay Hendricks
The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook, Martha Davis, Elizabeth Robbins Eshelman, and Matthew McKay
Breaking Free from Emotional Eating, Geneen Roth
The Dance of Anger: A Woman's Guide to Changing the Patterns of Intimate Relationships, Harriet Lerner
Don't Bite the Hook: Finding Freedom from Anger, Resentment, and Other Destructive Emotions, Pema Chodron
Emotional Intelligence, Daniel Goleman
Will I Ever Be Good Enough?: Healing the Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers, Dr. Karyl McBride