Written By: UMA Editorial Team |

Published on: November 16, 2023


One of the most challenging pursuits of modern life is finding a moment of repose. Nearly everything around us—cell phones, email, books, streaming services, advertisements—takes hold of our attention with a ferocious grip. It’s a harsh reality that leaves us depleted and anxious—and robs us of important time to reflect and relax, two things that Ayurveda holds paramount for the health of the mind, body, and spirit.

This vampiric fact makes it critical to find time to be still and hold space for ourselves. How we accomplish this is deeply personal—but there is one way that we believe transcends trends and time: a good book. Nestled in a chair feeling the thin pages between your fingers makes it harder to react to everyday stimuli. (Even more so if the book is compelling.)

All four of these new titles invite you into a world of self-discovery, well-being, and thoughtfulness. Each is a meditation in its own right.

Here is the list of books for your self discovery journey: 


HOW TO BREATHE By Ashley Neese

Ashley Neese unveils a universal, empowering, and elemental truth: At the core of every mindfulness practice is the breath. Neese knows this through and through. As a holistic breathwork teacher and writer, she has guided people to profound peace and healing through her work. In her new book Neese introduces her breathwork methodology and unlocks the reasoning why the breathe, albeit simple, holds so much power. She then delivers twenty-five practices to help with common scenarios, from anxiety to grief. Neese’s writing is never prescriptive. Rather, it’s educational, warm, and utterly inclusive. Because as she writes, “anybody—regardless of age, ability, location, or beliefs—can utilize breathwork to better navigate life.”




“For centuries, moments of self-care have been times to reconnect with yourself, and the intention of this book is to get back to this,” writes Sara Panton, co-founder of Vitruvi, in her new book, Essential Well Being. For Panton, self-care is deeply woven into her personal fabric. And what’s so unique—and truly inspiring—is the way she approaches it. Panton believes we can better care for ourselves in the smaller, “even secret” moments throughout our days to help us regenerate, restore, and reconnect. These include at-home beauty rituals to stretches to implement at work to simple DIY essential oil recipes. Panton shares them all between the pages.


HEAL BY KELLY Noonan Gores

Several years ago Kelly Noonan Gores released her documentary, HEAL, to an incredible response. The lauded film—which features people who have overcome grave illnesses from investing in alternative practices—supports the believe that we truly have autonomy over our health. Noonan Gores’ book of the same name continues on that journey, following two individuals as they find their way back to health. The narratives weaves in scientific research and expert testimonials from incredible spiritual, physical, and emotional healers including Anita Moorgani, Kelly Brogan, Marianna Williamson, and prominent alternative medicine pioneer and Ayurvedic health advocate, Deepak Chopra. HEAL is an edifying read that illustrates a profound truth: that our spiritual and emotional health are intrinsically linked with our physical health and vitally important for our overall wellbeing.


BEGINNER’S PLUCK By Liz Forkin Bohannon

More than ten years ago Liz Forkin Bohannon quit her job in the States and bought a one-way ticket—to Uganda. It was bold. It was scary. It was the catalyst that started Liz’s new life. She worked and faced failure in Uganda until she designed a pair of sandals. She taught several local young women how to make the shoes with the promise that in doing so they could earn enough money to earn an education. This idea and promise took off. Liz returned to the States, developed her philanthropic shoe company, Sseko, and honed her voice in cultivating a unique and incredibly empowering business ethos. Today, in tandem with running her business, Liz works with women to help them build their true personal passions and create the working (and personal) lives they want. This book is a refreshing and needed spin on any career memoir out there.