By Rachel Grunwell

Summer time is the perfect time to chill out in a hammock and get your nose in some more books. If you want to boost your wellbeing, read more. This will help you to learn, expand your thinking and outlook, and flourish.

Here are some wellness books I've read while in a hammock this summer while holidaying in Mt Maunganui and Whangamata.

The Book of Knowing by Gwendoline Smith. If you feel anxious or want to learn more about the way you think, then this book is gold. It also has a gold, sunny, bright yellow coloured cover. This book shares tools on how to change how you think and feel — to how to have more control and feel calmer and happier.

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This book uses such clear, easy-to-read language. So, a teenager, or adult, can learn lots of useful Cognitive Bahavioural Therapy strategies through this.

Ripe Recipes — A Third Helping.

The Ripe books are a winning formula! This is the third Ripe book from Angela Redfern and the Ripe Deli team. This beautiful book boasts 150 recipes. This includes salads, vegan dishes, curries and decadent desserts to spice mixes.

Broken up by seasons, this book will challenge home cooks a little more.

Meanwhile, here's a challenge ... See if you can stop your mouth from watering over lots of these recipes. It's impossible with the spiced pumpkin cheesecake with maple roasted pecans. Talk about heavenly… www.beatnikpublishing.com

All The Right Reasons — 12 Principles for Living a Life in Harmony. The author of this is Kevin Guest. He's the CEO of USANA Health Sciences. This is a global billion-dollar health and nutritional supplement company.

Kevin shares stories around his life principles. So, helping readers understand 'you have the power to change' for example. I met Kevin in Auckland for a chat and asked him to share five work/life balance tips too given his career success:

If you want to boost your wellbeing, read more.
If you want to boost your wellbeing, read more.

1.

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Be present. Mindfulness is "key", he says.

2. Practise breathing — this helps Kevin with panic attacks. He reveals he would experience these sometimes while performing as a musician. By the way, he's shared the stage over the years with the likes of Ozzy Osbourne and Belinda Carlisle! He uses breathing techniques. For example, he counts to four, pauses, then exhales for four counts. He does this slow counting while visualising a square's four sides. "This helps me stay balanced," he says.

3. Read books. This helps me have an open mind to being "teachable", he explains.

4. Prioritise who you are, your values system and what makes you "you". This helps you lead your best life.

5. Self-care. "This is not selfish."

This book is published by Inspired Solutions Publishing and is available on Amazon.

The Revive Café Cookbook 7 by Jeremy Dixon. If you love plant-powered kai, then this book is a gem. Vegetarian food shines bright in this book. All recipes in here are also dairy and egg free, and most are gluten-free.

There are almost no processed foods either or sugar. I love the plant-powered desserts and the 13 vegan cheese recipes in here! Jeremy also is behind the Frooze balls (healthy fruit and nut balls). You can enter to win a basket full of Frooze balls. Enter via the
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Buy the Revive Cafe Cookbook 7:

Quitting Plastic — Easy and Practical Ways to Cut Down the Plastic in Your Life. This is by Clara Williams Roldan with Louise Williams.

This cute pocket-size book is all about helping readers to become more conscious consumers — and I love it! Learn about the history of plastics, to good and bad kinds of plastics. I love the verdict section on what to use instead of your usual plastic products.

For example, bamboo toothbrushes are an alternative to plastic ones. There's even a recipe for making your own toothpaste in here. That recipe will save you from buying the ones in the plastic tubes from the supermarket. This book is full of cool, clever ideas.

Happy Ever After — Escaping the Myth of the Perfect Life by Paul Dolan.

This book will have you thinking outside of the box on how to live a happy life. Are you in a miserable marriage or don't want to ever marry? Or do you care too much about what people think over taking an unconventional path in life?

This book is not full of fluffy life-crisis kind of advice, but straight-talking wisdom. Paul busts lots of myths over things that make us supposedly happy. He shares science-backed research around how the path to fulfilment deserves a re-think. This books gives a fresh approach around happiness.

• Rachel Grunwell is an award-winning writer, wellness expert, coach, yoga teacher and runs the lifestyle website http://inspiredhealth.co.nz Follow her via InspiredHealthNZ's Facebook https://www.facebook.com/InspiredHealthNZ/Instagram https://www.instagram.com/RachelGrunwell/