Resilience books & resources

The following is a list of recommended books and resources on resilience. The Location(s) available column shows where these books are available, eg, from your local Christchurch City Library (CCL) and/or from the Mental Health Education and Resource Centre (MHERC).

Books can be reserved online and checked out by visiting CCL or MHERC. If a book is not available, a librarian may be able to suggest another book or place a hold on a book. To borrow or place a hold on a book, you must be a member of the library. MHERC can post books and other resources out to its users, including those living in rural areas, and will include a post-paid bag for returning books. Once read, books need to be returned to the library.

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Title & Author
Location(s) available

The Gifts of Imperfection

By Brené Brown

 (SL only)

Year: 2010

Subject: Self-esteem and self-acceptance

Brown offers exercises for readers to plumb their own emotions and begin to develop the kind of resilience needed to stand up to unrealistic expectations of others and ourselves.







Even Under Pressure: Simple Ways to Enhance your Resilience for Adversity and Turbulent Times

By T Watkins

Year: 2016

Subject: Resilience

What can we introduce to our everyday lives for greater personal resilience when we need it most? Even Under Pressure is written for those who want answers to that question, especially the increasing numbers of us experiencing the pace and weight of externally-imposed change. There are strong themes of stress reduction and prevention, developing mindfulness, emotional agility and attitude management practices, limiting conflict, containing a crisis, and action-planning for progress. The book describes and guides simple self-management practices designed to prepare for difficulties, hardship and stressful times, remain even in outlook and attitude under increasing pressure, navigate successfully through misfortune, recover from setbacks and unwelcome change and use adverse experiences to develop character and increase our capacity for thriving.




The Happiness Track: How to Apply the Science of Happiness to Accelerate your Success

By E Sepalla


Year: 2017

Subject: Resilience

Everyone wants to be happy and successful and yet the pursuit of both has never been more elusive. We are urged to craft careers that matter, to achieve more and waste no time on the small stuff, to be actively engaged in our communities and, while we are at it, to relish every second. Rather than thriving, all this pressure leads to declining wellbeing, relationships and, paradoxically, productivity. In The Happiness Track Emma Seppälä explains that behind our inability to achieve sustainable fulfillment are counterproductive theories of success. Success doesn’t have to come at our personal expense. Drawing on the latest research into resilience, willpower, growth mindset, stress, creativity, compassion, mindfulness, gratitude training and optimism, Seppälä shows how nurturing ourselves is the most productive thing we can do to thrive professionally and personally. Filled with practical advice on how to apply these findings to your daily life, The Happiness Track is a life-changing guide to fast-tracking your success and creating an anxiety-free life.




Super Better: A Revolutionary Approach to Getting Stronger, Happier, Braver and More Resilient

By J McGonigal

Year: 2015

Subject: Resilience

A renowned game designer describes how she recovered from a debilitating concussion by turning her therapeutic process into a digital game that became the subject of a major NIH research study.




Everyday Kindness

By S Dowrick

Year: 2011

Subject: Kindness

Virtually every moment of our greatest wellbeing reflects the giving and receiving of kindness. At home, work and in the wider world, there are countless opportunities when a moment of consideration or kindness – given or received – will transform your day. Whether it is a hard time to be endured, or a wonderful time to be shared and celebrated, it’s our willingness to think well of ourselves and act kindly towards others that makes all the difference. In this intimate, deeply reassuring book, Choosing Happiness author Dr Stephanie Dowrick takes kindness as her inspiration and theme. And she does so in ways that are powerfully encouraging. Whether she is writing about food or moods, about growing in self-confidence and appreciation, teaching resilience to our children or ourselves, making the best choices to support our physical and emotional wellbeing, the pleasures and dilemmas of contemporary work, parenting, friendship and love, or even how to improve or save our closest relationships – Stephanie Dowrick is making a calmer, happier and more rewarding life immediately possible.