This is not a book for someone who is trying to learn how to do mindfulness. It is a complete history, full of definitions and research studies.
The author's kindness and humor. He felt like a friend, helping me through difficult--but crucial--information that will help my life for years and years to come. I will always be grateful to him for this.
A few things. When he mentioned other works by other authors (Napoleon Hill's "How to Win Friends and Influence People" which basically tells us to just LISTEN to each other; John Price's work; Mark Leary's book "The Curse of the Self"; and many more), I quite often took note of that for future looking into.
The author's book focuses on explaining complex ideas about self-compassion (and compassion for others) in easily-understood language, and to tell we the readers that we CAN attain this elusive and wonderful gift of self-compassion/other compassion.
The gold in this book, which was repeated in many different ways throughout the book (helping me to understand it from different angles and within different contexts), THE THEME UPON WHICH THIS BOOK IS WRITTEN, is that it isn't our fault that we are critical or judgmental toward ourselves or others, or might feel superior/inferior, OR that we suffer from anxiety, fear, anger, or depression. Further--and what really brings it home for me--is that it is natural to feel a sudden flood of anxiety, fear, or a feeling of anger or wanting to exact revenge. AND that, because of how our brains have evolved, it is also natural for us to ruminate on these momentary feelings for days, months, and even years. It is also natural to feel a wide spectrum of feelings. They are not the enemies. What IS important is being aware of them and dealing with them so they don't overtake your life (like my reference to rumination--which is only one example).
In a phrase, he wants us to "experience rather than self-judge/judge others"; to be kind, loving, self-compassionate/compassionate, and warm towards ourselves and others. His full chapters, coming at the subject from many angles, and his exercises teach us how to do this.
This is not a difficult, scientifically-slanted book, though it is grounded firmly in science. It is also not a spiritual book per se, though you can certainly come at it from that angle, should you enjoy that. It is just, plain and simple, a very, very practical book. It doesn't throw around any far-flinging (what I call) "woo-woo" terms which other books might. It's real. It's down to earth. It's usable in everyday life.
He gave hope to this reader.
I feel more hope now, after hearing this book (which I'll be restarting at the beginning as soon as I've finished the first go-through, and I'm going to listen to it again and again) than I have in three decades of anti-depressants, anti-anxiety meds, and therapies with dozens of philosophies and advice.
As others have stated, this book is very long. But it is, by no means, too long--for all of its in-depth coverage of vital (and in my view life-saving) information. There is nothing I would have edited out to cut down the length. I have been listening to it in 3-4 blocks of time. But you could easily listen to it in one-hour increments or full day's-worth segments of time.
Buy this book, and then let it wash over you, confront your prior attitudes and opinions, and amaze you. His book is tightly focused, well-planned and executed, and practical for novices and experienced alike! I'm going to look for more by this author.
As a side note: this book is written by a British author, and the audio book is read by a British narrator. However, as an American, I had no trouble understanding every single word. In addition, I didn't have to strain to hear every single word with ease--the tone was even in volume and cadence throughout the entire piece.
Buy this book. It will make you feel so much better and more hopeful about yourself and your world than you could have ever imagined. I think these ideas are going to make a huge difference in my life as I begin to orient my gaze toward its premises, exercises, and practical applications.
No. This book is a set of pom poms, a cheer leading manual, for how great divorce is and how you can be better than ever because of your divorce. It is not for anyone who is suffering rejection, abandonment, loneliness.
You have VERY few books on abandonment or rejection. Why not?
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