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A Helpful Guide to Finding Mindfulness

By Martha Breil posted 06-29-2020 16:42


There is no shortage of information on mindfulness available today. A simple Google search on mindfulness renders "About 206,000,000" results. The sheer magnitude of resources can be overwhelming. Where do I start? I already feel overwhelmed!

This blog post attempts to solve the challenge of getting started with a mindfulness practice by providing a much shorter list of resources than our friend Google supplies. Its goal is to help you get started and/or advance your mindfulness practice.

The resources included here have been provided by people and/or institutions who have developed expertise in mindfulness practices. They have been vetted by experienced practitioners and/or meditation gurus. They are not merely what I found by completing haphazard Google searches. 

Vetted sources to reference as you begin, extend, and/or reinvigorate your Mindfulness practice

Online resource recommendations:

Please enjoy this fantastic summary recap written by Krista Larson, Director of Employee Well-Being, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP that addresses the well being of lawyers and administrative professionals.  Also included within the post are valuable links for further exploration of mindfulness.

This is a Zoom-based meditation service provider that is used and well received by Kelley Drye & Warren LLP.

This is a very helpful blog post authored by Rachel Shields Williams, Senior Manager, Experience Management, that offers suggestions for caring for health and wellness especially during these uncertain times. 

Enjoy various mental health and mindfulness resources.


App recommendations:

This app offers a timer when meditating.  It has a lot of resources including guided meditations - mainly from Tara Brach but there are many others too.

This app is a general resource for meditation and mindfulness resources and trackers.

This app offers timers that can be set to ring throughout the day as a reminder to wake up and begin again. It is "actually really helpful" according to my meditation teacher and devoted practitioner.

Book recommendations

Authored and Narrated by Brené Brown, which focuses on learning how to grow your resilience and move forward in the face of adversity.

Authored by Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant. This book is part memoir and part instructional about how to move forward when Plan A is no longer available to us.

Authored by Rhonda V. Magee and Tarcher Perigee. This book teaches how we can use mindfulness to help illuminate social justice reform.

Authored by Pema Chodron. This book explores a rare Tibetan teaching Pema received from her teacher, Dzigar Kontrul Rinpoche, and one that has become critical to her practice. She unveils the mystery of an ineffable quality; a "pre-emotional" feeling that arises in us, brings us discomfort and causes us to react by escaping the discomfort, often with harmful habits. 


Mindfulness gurus to explore in various mediums (teachings and books, website, and YouTube videos):

Offers methods to help liberate of your mind, awaken, and living your "true nature". 

Recommended for simplicity and practicality of his overall message.  
Recommended for mindfulness and meditation teachings in the Buddhist Contemplative tradition.


Closing comments:

I want to thank everyone who directly and indirectly contributed to the inputs necessary to compile the resources I have included in this blog. I approach my personal mindfulness practice primarily through my regular yoga practice. I have been a regular yoga practitioner in the Ashtanga tradition linking movement with breath to uncover a meditative state for the past decade. I dabble in meditation practices beyond my Ashtanga yoga practice only when my yoga practice alone becomes insufficient to quiet my mind (a herculean task I must say).

Mindfulness is a journey and practice as is life. Some days your mindfulness practice will suck; other days it will be great. The goal is to keep showing up and be present to quiet your mind. Eventually, the practice will reduce anxious, self-destructive thinking, and lead to more inner peace…at least for most people who commit and stick with it.

Let go of the type-A overachiever mindset. Most of us are not trying to achieve true enlightenment. Mindfulness is hard work. The goal should not be clearing your mind. That's virtually impossible for the layperson. Buddha arguably did not even achieve it. The goal is to quiet the chatter in your mind, let more of the bullshit go, and create new stories for how you will show up to yourself and the wider world.  Mindfulness works for some people some time but not all the time. Adopt what works for you; leave what does not; practice non-judgment. This is harder than it sounds, unfortunately.