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10 Books That Helped Me Through My Anxiety

Having an anxiety disorder can be a very isolating experience because it’s like an entirely separate life is happening inside my head. On my anxious days, it feels like I exist twice — once in the physical world with everyone else and again in my head, with just my thoughts and perceptions of the world. No one can see my second existence, and I don’t really want them to.

Anxiety will lead me to obsessive thoughts, to overanalyzing, to predicting scenarios, to coming up with theories, to assumptions, to fear. Anxiety will convince me that I’m alone. It will convince me that I’m the outcast. It will convince me that the world is a fragile place and the next mistake I make will break it.

But of course, this is never true — and I know this.

It doesn’t make it any less real in the moment.

It’s hard to put into words what I feel when I experience anxiety. It’s hard to explain to other people what is going on inside my head in a way that makes sense. It’s hard to justify being exhausted from arguing with my thoughts when on the outside, I’ve gotten nothing done.

And so I found it comforting when I found a book that managed to capture what it’s like to have anxiety. These are the books that made me feel less alone, that validated my thoughts and gave me the peace I needed to move on.

These authors do an incredible job of showing, not telling, when it comes to anxiety. Their writing styles all show what it’s like to live with anxiety in very different ways.

If your anxiety is making you feel alone, I would recommend picking up one of these titles — hopefully it is as much of a comfort to you as it was for me.

  1. Big Little Lies” by Liana Moriarty
  2. Truly Madly Guilty” by Liana Moriarty
  3. The Husband’s Secrets” by Liana Moriarty
  4. The Last Anniversary” by Liana Moriarty
  5. Wintergirls” by Laurie Halse Anderson
  6. Speak” by Laurie Halse Anderson
  7. Turtles All the Way Down” by John Green
  8. Still Life With Tornado” by A.S. King
  9. Everybody Sees the Ants” by A.S. King
  10. I Crawl Through It” by A.S. King

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Unsplash photo via Kate Williams