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  3. 10 Best Self Help Books in the UK 2023 | Marie Kondo, Bill Bailey and More
  • 10 Best Self Help Books in the UK 2023 | Marie Kondo, Bill Bailey and More 1
  • 10 Best Self Help Books in the UK 2023 | Marie Kondo, Bill Bailey and More 2
  • 10 Best Self Help Books in the UK 2023 | Marie Kondo, Bill Bailey and More 3
  • 10 Best Self Help Books in the UK 2023 | Marie Kondo, Bill Bailey and More 4
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10 Best Self Help Books in the UK 2023 | Marie Kondo, Bill Bailey and More

Shopping for a book that encourages reflection on your career, self-esteem and relationships shows you are ready to take responsibility for your own life. Our article helps you grapple with the different types of self-help manual available across brilliant sites like eBay and Amazon, including both traditional tomes and easy-to-digest audio. 


From Bill Bailey to Marie Kondo, Florence Given and Wim Hof, there are some big names in self-improvement on our list and we'll help you choose between them. Accessible, inspirational and much cheaper than therapy!

Last updated 14/07/2023
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Table of Contents

How to Choose a Self Help Book in the UK - Buying Guide

For tips and advice on making the best decision possible, read on! Below we have put together a simple guide to help you select the ideal self-help book for you and your journey towards personal growth. Not only will this section help you choose content to suit your needs, it will also help you select the right format to enjoy your book in.

1

First, Consider the Focus or Theme of the Book

While many self-help books will combine several ways in which they deliver their guidance, we have categorised them into four types, each following a certain style or focus. See which you identify most with, and which you think will help you achieve your end goal. 

Want Actionable Tips and Techniques to Try? Pick a Book Promoting a Particular Method

Want Actionable Tips and Techniques to Try? Pick a Book Promoting a Particular Method

If you want a book that will really change your life, look out for one that promotes a particular technique, lifestyle or new way of thinking


This type of self-help guide will provide real, practical advice you can start using the moment you put the book down, whether that is simple actions to add to your daily routine or new thought processes to apply to age-old situations. 


Among our top ten picks you will find books that preach a particular mindset (perhaps more tough or laid back than you are used to) as well as self-help titles that teach you breathing techniques or suggest changes to diet or methods for getting organised. Each one has an action you can begin today! And the effects are noticeable. 

For Relatable Reads That Encourage Reflection; Autobiographies With a Self-Help Element

For Relatable Reads That Encourage Reflection; Autobiographies With a Self-Help Element

Quite a few celebrities have put together their own guides on happiness in the last few years – books like this are great for readers who are lucky enough not to have serious mental health struggles and simply looking for small changes they can make to find contentment in the everyday.


Some have also opened up about their personal battles with anxiety and depression; the ideal pick for readers who deal with similar issues and want to feel less alone. Others writers are evangelical about the strength of mind they have developed in the face of massive adversity; a good choice for those who value mental toughness. 

Pushed for Time? Books of Brief Essays and Quotable Mantras Are Ideal

Pushed for Time? Books of Brief Essays and Quotable Mantras Are Ideal

For readers who don't have a lot of time and find it tricky to get to the end of a book, we think collections of easy-to-digest essays are a wonderful choice. Even better for those rushed off their feet are self-help books peppered with positive mantras and brief catchphrases that can be repeated and remembered in times of need. 


Surely advice that can be diluted into a few handy memorable mottos is the best kind? You'll see a few collections of essays in our top ten selection. They're another good choice for those not so keen to delve too deep into their own psyche and are just at the start of their self-reflective journey; bite-size advice is best for beginners

For Tailored Advice, Look for Guides on Particular Topics Such as Alcohol or Careers

For Tailored Advice, Look for Guides on Particular Topics Such as Alcohol or Careers

As you browse our list you will notice a couple of titles aimed at specific issues. Some big ones we thought were vital to include were alcohol and the all-important topic of self-improvement in the workplace. These tailored guides look with laser focus at particular areas of life rather than giving a broader take on 'happiness' or 'wellbeing'.


Self-help guides focusing on the reduction of alcohol consumption are a great choice for anyone who wants to treat their body better, enjoy glowing skin and ditch hang-xiety for good. 


Buying a book like this is a positive step towards making a small but impactful lifestyle change. If you are a workaholic or want to become more productive when working from home, we think books that help your streamline your work life are another smart pick!

2

Pick the Format You Find Most Convenient and Easiest to Absorb

We all have our favourite ways of enjoying novels, newspapers and everything in between, and indeed, whether you go traditional or digital will impact the practicality of your self-help book. However, there are a few more reasons you may choose one over the other, especially if the title you pick covers heavier or difficult topics. 

Hardcover Self-Help Books Make Thoughtful Gifts, Paperbacks Are Cheap and Flexible

Hardcover Self-Help Books Make Thoughtful Gifts, Paperbacks Are Cheap and Flexible

If you're keen on traditional formats, consider what type of cover is the most convenient for both your reading style and how you plan to use your self-help book. For instance, newly-released titles tend to come out in a hardcover version first, which are usually quite heavy and bulky. 


This can sometimes be off-putting as they aren't as easy to take on the go and they're less practical to read in bed. A plus side of self-help hardcovers is the fact they can be a smart Christmas present for someone you know in search of some guidance, and besides, they look cute on any coffee table!


For a light and flexible self-help book you can take with you everywhere, you've got to pick a paperback. They can be easily chucked in your bag to refer to when needed or passed on to a friend, and they're much cheaper too.

Audiobooks Can Motivate With Inspiring Narration, eBooks Allow You to Explore Several Titles

Audiobooks Can Motivate With Inspiring Narration, eBooks Allow You to Explore Several Titles

Last but not least, consider taking in the information from your self-help book via audiobook or using an eReader. Both have great benefits and allow you to save shelf space. 


Audio versions allow you to get on with something else such as cleaning, crafting or exercise while you listen. They also give you the chance to take in more information than you might when reading after a long, tiring day, especially if the topic is a bit heavy. Plus they're extra inspirational and motivational if the narrator is enthusiastic!


eBooks, on the other hand, don't allow you to cut back on screen time but they do save on space – allowing you to carry hundreds of life-changing books around in your pocket! This is ideal if you travel a lot or you have a list of several topics or similarly-themed self-help books you'd like to get stuck into. 

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10 Best Self Help Books in the UK

Now let's delve into the ten best self help guides on the market today. We have tried to find a broad range of self-help tomes, from ones focused on specific areas to more general books about finding happiness. Take a look and see which ones tickle your fancy.
Popularity
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Price
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Key features
1

Alain de Boton

The School of Life: An Emotional Education

Alain de Boton The School of Life: An Emotional Education  1枚目

£16.66

High Mid

A Life-Affirming Guide Approaching Life With Practicality and Hope

2

Wim Hof

The Wim Hof Method

Wim Hof The Wim Hof Method 1枚目

£14.99

High Mid

Boost Your Mind by Getting in Touch With Your Body

3

James Clear

Atomic Habits: Tiny Changes, Remarkable Results

James Clear Atomic Habits: Tiny Changes, Remarkable Results 1枚目

£8.79

Low Mid

The Accessible Bestselling Handbook to Build and Break Habits

4

David Goggins

Can't Hurt Me

David Goggins Can't Hurt Me 1枚目

£15.03

High Mid

A Motivating and Inspirational Guide to an Unbreakable Mindset

5

Frankie Bridge

OPEN: Why Asking for Help Could Save Your Life

Frankie Bridge OPEN: Why Asking for Help Could Save Your Life 1枚目

£11.99

Mid

An Important Memoir to Break the Taboos Surrounding Mental Health

6

Rosamund Dean

Mindful Drinking: How Cutting Down Can Change Your Life

Rosamund Dean Mindful Drinking: How Cutting Down Can Change Your Life 1枚目

£8.99

Low Mid

A Look at How Alcohol Reduction Can Improve Our Wellbeing

7

Marie Kondo and Scott Sonenshein

Joy at Work: Organising Your Professional Life

Marie Kondo and Scott Sonenshein  Joy at Work: Organising Your Professional Life 1枚目

£5.99

Low

A Guide to Getting Your Work Habits in Check

8

Florence Given

Women Don't Owe You Pretty

Florence Given Women Don't Owe You Pretty  1枚目

£9.88

Low Mid

The Feminist Manifesto of 2020

9

Bill Bailey

Bill Bailey's Remarkable Guide to Happiness

Bill Bailey Bill Bailey's Remarkable Guide to Happiness 1枚目

£15.56

High Mid

A Beloved Comedian's Handbook for Contentment

10

Euny Hong

The Power of Nunchi: The Korean Secret to Happiness and Success

Euny Hong The Power of Nunchi: The Korean Secret to Happiness and Success 1枚目

£10.65

Mid

A Guide to Using Intuition for Harmony, Connection and Trust

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No.1

Alain de BotonThe School of Life: An Emotional Education

The School of Life: An Emotional Education  Image 1
Source:amazon.co.uk
Reference price
£16.66
High Mid
Reference price
£16.66
High Mid

A Life-Affirming Guide Approaching Life With Practicality and Hope

We believe everyone should read this book. It is a simple and gentle guide to life, told through an emotional lens, with chapters on culture, relationships, work, others and 'self'. At once realistic and hopeful, this book allows us to think about everyday emotion in complex ways.


Reminding us that love can take a million different forms and that the person who identifies as 'bad' is probably much nicer than they think, this book makes a case for the now less-fashionable institution of marriage, but also tells us affairs aren't the scandalous kiss of death Hollywood would have us believe they are. A unique approach to emotions told with a lighthearted voice. 10/10.

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No.2

Wim HofThe Wim Hof Method

The Wim Hof Method Image 1
Source:amazon.co.uk
Reference price
£14.99
High Mid
Reference price
£14.99
High Mid

Boost Your Mind by Getting in Touch With Your Body

Wim Hof is an absolute powerhouse of physical endurance and personal enlightenment. He is funny, joyful and convinced that through connection to our bodies we can unlock the untapped potential of our brains. Using breathwork, exploring the effects (and potential benefits) of stress, challenging our bodies to brave the cold; this book has it all!


Hof looks into alternative methods of healing, all with a sense of laughter and adventure. Unlike many of the other books on our list, this guide takes us beyond our offices, habits and daily routines into deep water, freezing temperatures and higher planes of consciousness through our breath. It really is a life-affirming and hugely inspiring read.

No.3

James ClearAtomic Habits: Tiny Changes, Remarkable Results

Atomic Habits: Tiny Changes, Remarkable Results Image 1
Source:amazon.co.uk
Reference price
£8.79
Low Mid
Reference price
£8.79
Low Mid

The Accessible Bestselling Handbook to Build and Break Habits

Pick this simple handbook for habit forming if you want to start making tiny, real changes that will open you up to a whole new life. As with many of the books on our list, this bestselling self-help volume has an autobiographical thread which helps to personalise its teachings.


James Clear and his family have fought through various types of personal trauma which are detailed with appealing simplicity in this book. The subsequent chapters are packed with graphs and diagrams demonstrating the importance of ditching goals and focusing on the process and the systems we have in place. Life-changing stuff. 

No.4

David GogginsCan't Hurt Me

Can't Hurt Me Image 1
Source:amazon.co.uk
Reference price
£15.03
High Mid
Reference price
£15.03
High Mid

A Motivating and Inspirational Guide to an Unbreakable Mindset

Push through pain and fight fear with this tough-thinking approach to mental health. David Goggins grew up dealing with a physically abusive father as well as racial prejudice. He then joined the US armed forces and has become one of the world's most celebrated athletes.


This book mixes memoir with powerful wisdom and advice on developing a bulletproof mindset. As well as inspiring through artfully-told anecdotes, it contains clear descriptions of how Goggins has used mental strength to achieve physical excellence and override doubt in favour of ambition. A huge confidence boost to those addicted to negative thinking.

No.5

Frankie BridgeOPEN: Why Asking for Help Could Save Your Life

OPEN: Why Asking for Help Could Save Your Life Image 1
Source:amazon.co.uk
Reference price
£11.99
Mid
Reference price
£11.99
Mid

An Important Memoir to Break the Taboos Surrounding Mental Health

This book is at once a memoir and a mental health bible, where pop star Frankie Bridge speaks candidly about her struggles with varied forms of anxiety and depression, fearlessly breaking taboos around medication and encouraging readers to embrace every kind of help available to them.


Her book is warm, funny and super easy to read. Just by talking about some of the conditions she has suffered – which many of us will have been experienced but are unsure how to articulate – Frankie inspires conversation about the issues we sometimes ignore or feel ashamed to share. 

No.6

Rosamund DeanMindful Drinking: How Cutting Down Can Change Your Life

Mindful Drinking: How Cutting Down Can Change Your Life Image 1
Source:amazon.co.uk
Reference price
£8.99
Low Mid
Reference price
£8.99
Low Mid

A Look at How Alcohol Reduction Can Improve Our Wellbeing

If you find booze affects your life in negative ways, you may be looking for a self-help book which centers around reducing your alcohol intake. If that is the case, we think this could be just the ticket! It is full of advice on gradually cutting down and explains the benefits of doing so.


This book is divided into three sections; the problem, the incentive and the plan. It has clear, practical tips and advice on how to drink less alcohol, and explores the cultural trends and psychology behind our society's relationship with wine, beer and spirits. This really is a self-help guide to change your life.

No.7

Marie Kondo and Scott Sonenshein Joy at Work: Organising Your Professional Life

Joy at Work: Organising Your Professional Life Image 1
Source:amazon.co.uk
Reference price
£5.99
Low
Reference price
£5.99
Low

A Guide to Getting Your Work Habits in Check

Mari Kondo – the woman who introduced the world to the simple magic of tidying up – has collaborated with organisational psychologist Scott Sonenshein to bring us a new self-help guide. Quick to read and packed with actionable advice, this time she encourages readers to reflect on what 'sparks joy' for us at work


This book has quizzes and questions to prompt careful thought in useful directions. It will help you discover what it is you truly desire from your working life, ditch negative work habits, find a more harmonious balance to improve productivity, set clear goals and, of course, keep your workspace spick and span! 

No.8

Florence GivenWomen Don't Owe You Pretty

Women Don't Owe You Pretty  Image 1
Source:amazon.co.uk
Reference price
£9.88
Low Mid
Reference price
£9.88
Low Mid

The Feminist Manifesto of 2020

We love this colourful book with its impactful mantras and striking illustrations because it is so accessible while also being clever and insightful. Another wonderful gift idea, this book makes a striking coffee table adornment and can be opened daily at random to inspire bold actions and immense self-love. 


The chapters are short and the points are bold; all illustrated with images of women and non-binary characters wearing statement accessories and clothing emblazoned with empowering messages. The book analyses and advises on identity, inclusion and diversity, romantic relationships, social media and friendships with a no-nonsense approach.

No.9

Bill BaileyBill Bailey's Remarkable Guide to Happiness

Bill Bailey's Remarkable Guide to Happiness Image 1
Source:amazon.co.uk
Reference price
£15.56
High Mid
Reference price
£15.56
High Mid

A Beloved Comedian's Handbook for Contentment

In his uplifting book, Bill Bailey shares pearls of straightforward wisdom through lively anecdotes, worded in the trademark quirky style of his stand-up comedy. He acknowledges the importance of catch-all mantras and sage life advice, but also stresses the mental health benefits of throwing out unwanted clothing and putting the lids back on jars.


We think this lighthearted guide to living more joyfully would serve as a great gift for anyone who squirms a little bit at the concept of 'self-help'. It is peppered with charming illustrations, many by Bailey himself. Unfortunately, it's not available on audiobook yet, but it shouldn't be too long before busy Bill finds the time to record his readings for eager-eared fans.

No.10

Euny HongThe Power of Nunchi: The Korean Secret to Happiness and Success

The Power of Nunchi: The Korean Secret to Happiness and Success Image 1
Source:amazon.co.uk
Reference price
£10.65
Mid
Reference price
£10.65
Mid

A Guide to Using Intuition for Harmony, Connection and Trust

We really like this book which centers around the Korean concept of 'nunchi' which refers to an ability to read the room, use intuition and gauge how others are thinking and feeling to influence situations in our own favour. Everyone loves the idea of a superpower, and nunchi is just that.


Translating to English as 'eye-measure', this powerful technique is hailed as the reason for Korea's economic boom; an ability to assess what the world was asking for and to provide it. This book applies the theory of quiet observation to work, friendships and romance; a truly eye-opening read for anyone unaware of this fascinating approach to life. 

Need More Shelf-Spiration? Check Out These Book Recommendations

Need More Shelf-Spiration? Check Out These Book Recommendations

If you love to read educational books, why not explore some of the links below? We have carefully ranked the best reads in a variety of categories and we reckon our research has yielded a collection of absolute crackers! From political topics to other areas of self-improvement, our articles have got it all. 

Summary

We are so excited for you to move forward on your self-help journey! Of course, self-development is a lifelong project and big changes happen gradually over time, but an inspiring book can do wonders towards helping us think differently and make small, effective alterations to the way we live our lives. Good luck and happy reading.


Author: Annie Hopkins

Top 5 Self Help Books

No. 1: Alain de BotonThe School of Life: An Emotional Education

No. 2: Wim HofThe Wim Hof Method

No. 3: James ClearAtomic Habits: Tiny Changes, Remarkable Results

No. 4: David GogginsCan't Hurt Me

No. 5: Frankie BridgeOPEN: Why Asking for Help Could Save Your Life

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