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Mindfulness: A practical guide to finding peace in a frantic world Paperback – 5 May 2011

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Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Piatkus (5 May 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 074995308X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0749953089
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 15.2 x 2.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,086 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 30 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

This is an inspiring programme for anyone who caring about his or her own health and sanity. (Jon Kabat-Zinn)

Peace can't be achieved in the outside world unless we have peace on the inside. Mark Williams and Danny Penman's book gives us this peace (Goldie Hawn)

Want a happier, more content life? I highly recommend the down-to-earth methods you'll find in MINDFULNESS (Daniel Goldman, bestselling author of EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE)

If you want to free yourself from anxiety and stress, and feel truly at ease with yourself, then read this book. (Ruby Wax)

Book Description

A book and CD package. Mindfulness reveals the secrets of lifelong happiness and details a unique programme developed by Oxford University psychologist Professor Mark Williams with colleagues around the world.

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1,389 of 1,428 people found the following review helpful By Pete TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 30 July 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've suffered from depression most of my adult life and in that time have been fighting it on numerous fronts: Antidepressants, exercise, dietary changes, CBT and of course enough self help books to start a small shop on the subject. But all of these have only helped with some of the symptoms, none have really cured my depression and none have gone to the heart of it and shown me WHY I am depressed.

I had read in numerous places that meditation was considered beneficial and a particular branch of this, "mindfulness", even more so. But my first experiences with this subject were not good. Having bought the Dummies guide initially, it certainly had many "Aha!" moments but no structure and like most self help books soon went back on the shelf and out of memory. Then I tried a guided meditation CD which whilst considered one of the best in the field it was just too long - I can manage to stay awake for maybe 10 minutes at most when relaxing in this manner and I dare say anyone else on medication for depression would be the same. So that became a useful tool to help me sleep but nothing else.

This book was different. I'll be blunt, I nearly didn't buy it, having become jaded with the whole self-help philosophy but the good reviews and above all the ridiculously low price made this worth the risk. What this book does is give a formal structure - an 8 week course - to the whole idea of mindfulness, plus it gets you going with some very sensible length guided meditations on the CD. With most of these well under 10 minutes, the chances of nodding off are greatly diminished and the typical objections such as "I don't have time" are overcome. And let's be frank about this, if you're suffering from depression and feeling low, you CAN justify 10 minutes a day to try and fight it.
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118 of 123 people found the following review helpful By John on 27 May 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I found this book remarkably insightful, and a very useful. Here's why....

Would you describe yourself as often suffering from stress? Have you ever lain in bed at night with thoughts whizzing around your head. You try to switch off, but can't, and even when you force yourself to stop thinking about one issue, one of a hundred other things come to mind - did I remember to pay that bill? Heck, I've got to complete that report by 10am tomorrow, better set off extra early? Oh hell, it's 2am and I'm still awake - I'm going to be shattered tomorrow!

If you do, this book *may* be for you.

Must admit, I was skeptical of the entire subject when I first found this book. I loved one review I read who said it should be renamed to "How to cope with the crp that life throws at you". It's nothing to do with crystals, healing, and it won't turn you into a Buddhist. What it aims to do, is separate you from your worries, so you can think about them calmly and objectively.

How does it work?

Well, the first few chapters are really enlightening. Effectively it explains the scientific background to how and why this book was written, how mindful meditation works, and what effects it aims to achieve. It explains that the practice is medically based, and it's one of the preferred treatments for depression by NICE, the National Institute for Clinical Excellence. So you're in good hands - even if you're not depressed - just a bit stressed like me.

Although the Kindle version is written, it includes some recordings, and It goes on to provide a series of "guided meditations" during which the author (who has a remarkably soothing voice), guides you through the steps (mainly breathing) to meditate.
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400 of 428 people found the following review helpful By Spkm on 11 May 2011
Format: Paperback
Probably like many people, I had a vague idea of what meditation and
mindfulness were before reading this book but didn't really
understand them properly. This book explains mindfulness and its benefits
very clearly and really shows you how regular practice of meditation can
help you deal with the stresses of everyday life. It is particularly
useful that the book provides an 8 week program of different levels or
types of meditation because this really gives you a sense that it is
something practical that can bring about change. This seems to be what
differentiates this book from the other books on meditation that I looked
at. The guided meditations on the accompanying CD are great and have so
far been easy to follow and I look forward to completing the program. Over
all, it seems like a really great book if you want to learn about the
benefits of meditation and mindfulness.
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443 of 484 people found the following review helpful By K. Picken on 11 July 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have to smile about this book: Books that come with CDs are usually subscripted "With accompanying CD" or "With supporting CD", but with this one it is, for me, the other way around. If all you do is buy the book and meditate under the guidance of the CD then it will be the best £10 you'll ever spend. The eight meditations on the CD are progressive and in line with the 8-week meditation course outlined in the book; however, one can happily use any one of them in any order and still derive great benefit and, indeed, enjoyment from them. The content and the style of vocal delivery are just right. One feels reluctant to ditch the CD and go it alone!
This is not to say that the book is unimportant or unnecessary; it contains a written script of the 8 meditations, together with other supporting explanatory material and some exercises for breaking habits and bringing one to appreciate ordinary everyday things. However, I feel that the most important content of the book is the explanation of how the mind holds onto previous painful memories and unconsciously makes connections and associations with those memories when a person experiences disagreeable events or emotions in everyday life. It explains that this response is habitual and uncontrolled; it also explains that the psychological dysfunction operates without full cognisance of the bodily sensations that accompany it and which are caught up in the vicious cycle of impulse, mood, emotion and thought.
I would set this immensely practical meditation method well apart from the methods we are more familiar with; those that focus and concentrate and which try to ignore or even stop thought; constantly chanting some silly mantra to oneself and hoping for some wonderful "aha" experience to happen.
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