Friday, September 10, 2010


As I described in my first post, which you can read here, my goal is to become an expert in mindfulness. I know this will take me years of reading, going to workshops, and practicing the techniques. With this much investment of time and energy, some may ask what is so worthwhile about mindfulness. While there is no way to really quantify all of the many ways that it is beneficial, I can share a personal experience to show some practical benefits. One night, after a twelve hour work day, I was exhausted. When I finally got in bed, though, I could not sleep. My mind was whirring like a wind turbine and each thought was like another gust setting the whole thing in motion again. I said to John, my fiance', "I can't sleep; I am wide awake!" He said, "That's because you keep thinking! Stop thinking!" In saying that, he reminded me that I was caught up in things that I could do nothing about at that moment and all I was doing was costing myself precious minutes of sleep. With that reminder, I took deep three deep breaths, and began focusing on my breathing. Every time my mind drifted, I gently brought my awareness back to my breath; within minutes I was asleep. This technique worked so well because it is something I have been doing for years; it takes practice and does not always work perfectly. However, honing this type of skill is priceless to those of us who sometimes have trouble slowing our turbines.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Do You Guru

In my quest to be a mindfulness expert, I have many books, blogs, articles, etc. to read.  Of course, I want to read those of the current experts in the field.  One of the "gurus" of the field is Jon Kabat-Zinn.  He has many books on mindfulness and has been in the field for many years.  All of his books are on my "to read" list.  Anyone interested in cultivating mindfulness would be smart to check him out.  So far, I have read:
This book was one of the first books I ever read on the topic and it had a huge impact on how I existed in the world.  It was years ago that I read it and I am planning on a re-read.  Also, for more of the "gurus" of the field and some free mindfulness meditations, I go to   I recently

saw that they are offering a certification in mindfulness instruction. If I didn't live a million miles from CA and had the money, I would totally go!  Talk about a "guru fest" of mindfulness!  Seriously, though, I have done the five minute meditation that is free and not only does it promote mindfulness, it is instantly relaxing.  So, take five and check it out.  I'd love to know what you think about it.