I love reading, over the past couple of years I’ve really got into non-fiction books and the list of books I want to read has been getting longer and longer!
I’m not the fastest reader, and as like most of you, am often juggling different things and reading gets relegated to just 5 or 10 minutes in bed before my head hits the pillow. As such, it often takes me ages to get through a book, by that time I’ve often added a few more to the list!
As you may well know, I love listening to podcasts. I find them such a great resource of knowledge and love hearing some of the stories they share. They help make previously arduous moments of my life, such as hoovering or commuting to work, a pleasure – I almost look forward to them!
This combination of loving books and podcasts made me, finally, take the plunge in subscribing to Audible this month and I have to say I’ve loved it! I’m already on my third book!
The first book I listened to was Dr Rangan Chatterjee’s latest release, Feel Better in 5.
This book offers a menu of 5-minute activities you can do to support your health and happiness. I was intrigued to read it as thought it could offer some advice and suggestions to my patients, in more detail than I could cover in an appointment with them, but I do like to fully explore a resource before recommend it.
The book is set out almost like a menu, with plenty of suggestions but Dr Chatterjee advised to start you pick just one activity from each of the 3 sections – mind, body and heart. I think this is important to emphasise, or else I think it would be easy to become overwhelmed by all the possibilities and become frozen into inaction. To solve this issue, if you’re just not sure what will work for you Dr Chatterjee outlines a few suggestions, picked to match some common health complaints.
I think this book really does offer an easy-access approach to introduce new behaviours into your daily lives which have the power to radically transform your health and wellbeing by starting a ripple effect of positive change.
My favourite overall section of the book was the ‘heart’. The part which focused on connection really resonated with me, I’ve written blogs previously on the power of connection, loneliness and community.
Whilst ‘heart’ was my favourite section, like Lifestyle Medicine as a whole, I feel passionate that it is not just one element – it’s not nutrition, movement, sleep or stress management alone that can radically transform you health and happiness, but all of these combined which has such a profound impact.
Other highlights for me was introductions to mindfulness, breathing and yoga which Dr Chatterjee offers, and reiterating the importance of nature on our health (see my blogs on green space and health, green exercise for physical and mental wellbeing and national parks for mental health health, if you’re interested in this too and want to delve more into the topic).
Whilst it’s not that heavy on the science behind his suggestions (see his first 2 books for this), he does offer some of the principles of BJ Fogg’s work to help the reader understand their behaviour change and how to make new habits stick.
BJ Fogg is a behaviour scientist at Stanford university and one of the world’s leading experts in behaviour change. I’m a massive fan of his work.
As an extra on the audio book there is a conversation at the end between Dr Chatterjee and BJ Fogg which I really enjoyed listening to.
Overall, I’m loving audible and will definitely continue my subscription – I’m really enjoying getting more ‘reading’ done.
Feel better in 5 I think is a great resource if you want to improve you health through lifestyle changes but are not quite sure where to start, or have made a few changes, want to make some more but have run out of ideas!