Books can be a brilliant way of changing your outlook or attitude to something, whether that's your wellbeing, career or the environment.

Inside these to-the-point reads you'll find practical ways of making a difference in whatever aspect of life you'd like to improve – in less than a weekend. 

Whatever You Think, Think the Opposite by Paul Arden (2006)

Something of a contrarian? This is the book for you. A seasoned ideas man, Paul Arden spent 14 years as the Executive Creative Director at Saatchi & Saatchi, conjuring up ad campaigns for household name brands. A bestselling author, Arden’s second book proves the power of risk-taking, and will leave you feeling confident enough to take the plunge to make work more enjoyable than you ever thought possible. If you’re looking for motivation, or the opportunity to kickstart change in your life, Arden’s book is worth a read.

Food Rules: An Eater's Manual by Michael Pollen (2010)

With so many different opinions regarding what we put in our mouths, Michael Pollen’s to-the-point book can help you see food differently. Pollen, an internationally acclaimed journalist, became a best-seller with his previous book, In Defence of Food, and was ahead of his time with Food Rules. Thinking about cutting back on meat to save the planet? Pollen’s easily digestible book will give you the knowledge you need to know what to eat.  

A Little Happier by Derren Brown (2020)

Let’s face it, we could all be a little happier. Derren Brown might be known for his television magician antics, but his book Happy helped thousands of people – among them Stephen Fry, who said it was “crammed with wisdom and insight”. A Little Happier is the elemental version: 17 inspiring and reassuring lessons to help you work out what makes you happy, and then achieve it.

No. More. Plastic by Martin Dorey (2018)

Overwhelmed every time you take the bins out and want to know where to change? Martin Dorey’s got just the book for you. Approved by nature experts Chris Packham and Julia Bradbury, anti-plastics expert Dorey’s 2 minute solution has been inspiring people to make small changes to have a big impact.  

Get Promoted by Niamh O’Keefe (2020)

Getting a job is one thing, getting promoted is another. In this helpful book, leadership advisor Niamh O’Keefe draws on more than 25 years of strategy consulting experience to help solve your career frustrations. Working hard without recognition? Watching your peers fly up the ladder while you linger around on the lower rungs? Get Promoted can help prepare you for that one conversation that could change everything.

SOS What you can do to reduce climate change – simple actions that make a difference by Seth Wynes (2019)

Unfortunately, the climate crisis isn’t going anywhere. But, as Greta Thunberg has made clear, no-one is too small to make a difference. Seth Wynes, a climate change researcher, has outlined actions beyond the obvious to help reduce your carbon footprint – and change the attitudes of those around you. Simple and effective, this book will help you to re-think your role in changing the future of the planet.

A Monk's Guide to a Clean House and Mind by Shoukei Matsumoto (2018)

Calm house, calm mind: nobody knows this better than Shoukei Matsumoto, a Japanese Buddhist monk who applies the teachings that monks live by to the effects of living in a busy modern world. Mastsumoto can help you to re-think your day, from when you get up, to preparing food and being more conscious of the objects around you, with the ultimate goal of easing you into a more gentle way of living.

How To Calm It: Relax Your Mind by Grace Victory

YouTuber and body positivity activist Grace Victory has won an audience of hundreds of thousands for her unflinching honesty and inspiring attitude towards the more taboo aspects of life. Here, she applies her own experience and encouraging spirit to give insight into what’s actually happening in our brains alongside useful, practical tips and exercises to help when you need it.

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