Last year Bill Gates gave us a list of 5 books that he enjoyed in 2018. Three of the recommendations have been on my reading list too. Educated by Tara Westover, Bad Blood (the insane story of Theranos and Elizabeth Holmes) and The Headspace Guide to Meditation & Mindfulness. According to the recent Gallup Global Emotions Report, we are more stressed, angry and sad than ever before.
“The goal of meditation isn’t to control your thoughts, it’s to stop letting them control you.” Anonymous
I try to practice meditation as often as I can because it really helps me calm down and this year I’ve been anxious AF. While there are benefits to meditating daily, Bill Gates meditates three times a week for 10 minutes at a time. That’s all you need to start reaping the benefits.
The author is the co-founder of the popular meditation app, Headspace. Founded in 2004, Andy Puddicombe is a former Buddhist monk who wanted to demystify our preconceptions about meditations. He is also behind the voice you hear on the app.
What is meditation
Meditation is the practice of observing your thoughts and not reacting in a positive or negative way, but rather seeing them for what they are and not becoming attached to them. This is not something you become good at, you just do it. And for me, this is so refreshing because I am always trying to improve myself. Meditation teaches me to just be and not freak out.
If I’m having thoughts that are causing anxiety, instead of getting anxious about having those thoughts, I try and observe them for what they are and let them go. I don’t always get this right, but meditation sure helps a lot.
You don’t even have to sit while meditating. You can do it while walking or during exercise. What I really like about the app, is that you can do quick two-minute meditations in the bathroom at work if need be (which is something I do).
Why you should read Meditation & Mindfulness
- Demystifies what is sometimes considered out there
- Makes meditation easy
- The studies and research will convert even the strongest sceptics
- Anecdotal (explains how he spent time as a monk, showing you don’t have to become one to be mindful)
If, like most, you feel anxious, stressed and just want some calm, then read Meditation & Mindfulness to learn how to be present. It’s a very easy and enjoyable read with practical tools you can implement immediately.
Quiet the mind, feel less stressed, less tired, and achieve a new level of calm and fulfilment in just ten minutes a day.
Watch author Andy Puddicombe’s TEDTalk
Where to buy Meditation & Mindfulness: I switch between reading books on my Kindle, on my phone (Google Books) and IRL. For me it depends on the price and if I want a hardcopy that I’d like to keep forever. Surprisingly Google Books only had this book on audiobook so I bought it on Amazon for about $6.
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