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The 10 Best Mindfulness Books in 2022, According to Experts

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It can be difficult to try and stay in the moment, acknowledge our negative emotions without letting them control us, and try to relax. This is why mindfulness can be a very important practice to implement in your life, and research has found that it's associated with both higher levels of happiness and a greater purpose in life. 

With the plethora of self-help books out there, it can be tough to know where to start, especially if you're looking for mindfulness exercises that are rooted in science-based practices. That's why I reached out to psychotherapist Jennifer Coren, Wake Forest University's Assistant Professor in the Department of Counseling David A. Johnson, and clinical psychologist Allison Gilson to get their recommendations on books that can teach people about mindfulness, based on what they found helps for their clients. 

Whether you're looking for effective ways to de-stress or want to just learn more about the science behind mindfulness, these books can be a calming read. If anything, they can help you carve out space for yourself and focus on one thing at a time – which are major mindfulness skills themselves.

The 10 best mindfulness books, according to experts:

'Wherever You Go, There You Are' by Jon Kabat-Zinn


Whether you're new to mindfulness or need a refresher, this book is an excellent primer of how you can apply mindfulness to your life to help you feel more present as you go through your day. "Kabat-Zinn is well known in the modern-day mindfulness world, as he is viewed as the mindfulness guru and founder of what we know to be mindfulness today," Coren says. "His book explores the core value of concentration, and that can help any beginner along their journey."

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'The Miracle of Mindfulness' by Thich Nhat Hanh


While washing your dishes may be a mundane task for many, Hanh guides the reader through how small moments like these are perfect times to be more aware of what's going on around you. "This text is a great introduction to mindfulness," Johnson says. "Grounded in Buddhist teachings, Hanh explains mindfulness using everyday examples paired with pragmatic recommendations."

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'Practicing Mindfulness' by Matthew Sockolov


One great thing about mindfulness is that there is not just one way to practice it, and you may find which one works best for you in these 75 exercises. "A collection of 75 simple and brief exercises for practicing meditation, this book will give you a variety of practical ways to practice mindfulness and find the strategies that work for you," Gilson says. "Full of brief, 5- to 15-minute exercises, this book will help you build a sustainable mindfulness practice and tackle some of the common challenges, such as a wandering mind, that beginners often experience."

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'Self-Compassion' by Kristin Neff


If you tend to be tough on yourself, this book offers action plans for how to deal with issues that may arise in our day-to-day lives, with a focus on being kinder to ourselves. "We all know we're harder on ourselves than we are on others, saying things we'd never say about other people," Gilson says. "In this book, you'll learn to notice and modify your self-critical thoughts, leaving you with more compassion for yourself and better able to treat yourself the way you treat your friends."

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'Unf*ck Your Brain' by Faith G. Harper


Starting something new can be difficult when we're in a bad mental state, but mindfulness may be what we need to address our anxious, depressive, and angry responses to triggers in our lives.   "Dr. Faith dives into how to retrain your brain to respond in ways that are not problematic to your daily life," Coren says. "She helps her readers in understanding mindfulness techniques and the effective way to apply them to their lives."

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'The Mindful Way Workbook' by John Teasdale, Mark Williams, and Zindel V. Segal


If you're ready to embrace mindfulness but need a plan to get you started, this eight-week plan may be the extra kick that you need to get started. "It will teach you to observe the relationship between your thoughts and your emotions, and make shifts in your thinking to make you less vulnerable to emotional stress," Gilson said. "Broken up into an eight-week plan, the book introduces the basics of mindfulness, and walks you through practicing and reflecting on mindfulness exercises such as slow breathing and mindful self-compassion."

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'How to be an Adult in Relationships' by David Richo


Mindfulness practices can also be used to help improve our relationships with others, as outlined in this book by Richo. "Drawing on the Buddhist concept of mindfulness, this book explores five hallmarks of mindful loving and how they play an important role in our life, transitional times, and relationships," Coren says. 

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'Aware: The Science and Practice of Presence—The Groundbreaking Meditation Practice' by Daniel J. Siegel


For the skeptics who are interested in how this practice actually works, neuroscientist Siegal writes about the science underlying mindfulness meditation's effects in "Aware. " "[Siegal] explains how building focused attention and awareness can literally change how the neurons in our brain interact," Gilson says. "Slightly dense, this is a good book for the interested learner who is willing to take a bit more time to digest the sometimes technical but still useful information contained within." 

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'Full Catastrophe Living: Using the Wisdom of Your Body and Mind to Face Stress, Pain, and Illness' by Jon Kabat-Zinn


"Full Catastrophe Living' is a great resource for anyone interested in applying mindfulness to their daily lives," Johnson says. By engaging in mindfulness, people's mental health may improve, and physical issues like chronic pain may as well. "It provides clear instructions on multiple mindfulness and meditation practices while also addressing how mindfulness can address physical and emotional pain, as well as everyday stressors such as time, work, and relationships," he added.

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'Altered Traits: Science Reveals How Meditation Changes Your Mind, Brain, and Body' by Daniel Goleman and Richard J. Davidson


If you want to learn more about the history of mindfulness (as well as learn why some assumptions about it are false), this book is for you. "Altered traits is an accessible review of the science of mindfulness and the story of western scientists studying mindfulness," Johnson says. "Readers gain an understanding of not only how concepts grounded in Eastern spiritual practices became the focus of neuroscience, psychology, counseling, and medicine, but also an informed and realistic perspective of the benefits and limitations of mindfulness."

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Insider Picks Insider Reviews 2021 Education & Personal Development


50 Best Mindfulness Books (Reviews + PDF's)

Mindfulness books are exploding in popularity in Western culture. Countless resources are now available on the topic, and it can be hard to know where to start.

This article provides a wide-ranging collection of books relating to mindfulness. Whether you’re looking to mindfulness as a way to help yourself, your children, or your clients, and whether you prefer traditional books, audiobooks, or even free PDFs, you’ll find something here for you.

So go ahead and dive in. We hope you find what you are looking for.

Before you start reading this article, I recommend you to download our 3 Mindfulness Exercises Pack for free. With this package, you will not just be able to understand mindfulness on a theoretical level, but you’ll also have the tools to apply mindfulness in your work with clients or students.

This Article Contains:

  • Our Picks: Top 5 Books on Mindfulness for Beginners
  • Bestselling Mindfulness Books
  • “The Little Book of Mindfulness”
  • The 5 Best Mindfulness Meditation Books
  • Mindful Eating Books
  • Best Books on Mindful Parenting
  • Better Start Young: The Best Mindfulness Books for Kids
  • Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) Books
  • “Mindfulness: Finding Peace in a Frantic World”
  • Jon Kabat-Zinn’s Books
  • Freely Available Mindfulness PDFs
  • Audiobooks on Mindfulness
  • A Take-Home Message

Our Picks: Top 5 Books on Mindfulness for Beginners

If you don’t know how to get started with mindfulness, one of these books will help you out. These books are directed toward mindfulness newcomers, so you should feel comfortable picking up any of them in order to gain a foundational understanding of mindfulness.


Real-World Mindfulness for Beginners: Navigate Daily Life One Practice at a Time – Brenda Salgado

Brenda Salgado’s book for newcomers aims to introduce mindfulness by relating it to daily life.

She introduces several mindfulness practices beginners can immediately dive into, no matter how new they are to mindfulness. Some of these exercises are so short they can fit into any schedule.

The book also comes recommended by Sharon Salzberg, an accomplished mindfulness leader. (She’ll show up again later in this article.)

Available on Amazon.


Mindfulness for Beginners: A Simple Concise & Complete Guide to Mindfulness Meditation – Jeffrey Holloway

Jeffrey Holloway’s book is an introduction to mindfulness meditation both in theory and in practice.

This book will help readers learn the science of mindfulness as well as different ways to incorporate meditation into their lives.

Holloway began learning about mindfulness as a way to combat his anxiety, so people struggling with anxiety might find this book particularly helpful.

Available on Amazon.


Mindfulness for Beginners: Practical Guide to Mindfulness Meditation & Productive Life: Tips for the 21st Century Human – Martin Lippmann

Only 49 pages long, Martin Lippmann’s book is one of the shortest books on this list, so it might be a good option for people itching to get going, fast.

The book focuses on teaching everything you need to know to start a mindfulness meditation practice, as well as tips on how to maximize the effectiveness of your meditation sessions.

This book is a good option for someone who is already sold on mindfulness and is looking for a quick way to get started.

Available on Amazon.


Mindfulness for Beginners: How to Live in the Moment, Stress and Worry Free in a Constant State of Peace and Happiness – Yesenia Chavan

Yesenia Chavan’s introduction to mindfulness is not the shortest book on this list but is still a breezy read. It spends a bit more time convincing the reader that mindfulness is beneficial, then it suggests ways to start your own mindfulness practice, from meditation sessions to mindful breathing exercises.

Chavan’s book is aimed at people who want to dive headfirst into mindfulness and completely change their lives. This is because Chavan herself used mindfulness to attain a healthier weight and a happier lifestyle.

Available on Amazon.


Mindfulness: Ultimate Beginners Guide to Embrace Peace, Happiness, and Zen by Eliminating Stress and Anxiety – Kemal Ravakar

Kemal Ravakar’s book shows beginners that there are countless times throughout the day to practice mindfulness and that anyone can start applying mindfulness to their lives.

This makes it a good solution for people who want to learn the basics of mindfulness in a way that fits their schedule, whether they can afford to dedicate a lot of time to mindfulness or just a little bit.

A great book for people looking to learn from a Zen master rather than someone with a more Western background.

Available on Amazon.

Bestselling Mindfulness Books

For those who prefer proven commodities, we’ve picked some mindfulness books that have already helped thousands of people on their way to becoming bestsellers.

These books became bestsellers by appealing to a wide range of people, so it is likely that you might find value in them, too.


The Things You Can See Only When You Slow Down: How to Be Calm and Mindful in a Fast-Paced World – Haemin Sunim

Haemin Sunim’s book is an international bestseller that aims to help people adopt mindfulness in their lives in order to be happier. The author was born in South Korea but was educated in the United States, giving him a multicultural perspective that many people find valuable.

In his book, Sunim stresses the importance of fostering healthy relationships with others and the necessity of having a strong relationship with oneself. This book can help you deepen your existing mindfulness practice, but might also convince someone without an existing practice to establish one.

Available on Amazon.


Mindfulness in Plain English – Bhante Henepola Gunaratana

Bhante Henepola Gunaratana’s book on mindfulness is for people who want to completely change their lives with mindfulness and are ready to commit. It is short enough to read over and over again but long enough to make a lasting impact on the reader’s life.

The author is from Sri Lanka and has experience teaching in the United States, which makes this book helpful for those in the West who are interested in Eastern traditions. This bestseller comes recommended by mindfulness experts like Jon Kabat-Zinn, who we’ll discuss later.

Available on Amazon.


Declutter Your Mind: How to Stop Worrying, Relieve Anxiety, and Eliminate Negative Thinking – S.J. Scott and Barrie Davenport

S.J. Scott and Barrie Davenport’s bestselling book is focused on the benefits of mindfulness, such as improved relationships, reduced anxiety, and decreased mental clutter. The authors explain how to achieve these benefits through mindfulness meditation and other exercises.

The book is designed to be actionable, so anyone can pick it up and start benefiting from mindfulness right away. That fact, combined with its fairly short length, makes this a great choice for people looking for quick results.

Available on Amazon.


The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself – Michael A. Singer

Michael A. Singer’s book aims to help the reader discover themselves through their inner space and inward journey. Singer argues that practicing mindfulness is the best way to become fully conscious and free.

He helps the reader achieve this by explaining how to let go of painful memories and start living in the moment. This bestseller has found success around the world, showing that its lessons are accessible to people of many cultures.

Available on Amazon.


Start Where You Are: A Journal for Self-Exploration – Meera Lee Patel

Meera Lee Patel’s bestseller is the most interactive book on this list, as it’s formatted like a journal. It includes writing prompts and creative exercises that help readers discover mindfulness in their own ways.

This book is an excellent option for independent learners who prefer interactive experiences to more traditional books. It is also the clear choice for the aesthetically minded, as it is presented in a more visually pleasing way than the traditional books on this list.

Available on Amazon.

“The Little Book of Mindfulness”

The Little Book of Mindfulness: 10 Minutes a Day to Less Stress, More Peace by Patrizia Collard (2014) aims to be an easy-to-follow path to mindful awareness for anyone who has ten minutes a day to commit to it.

Collard is a psychotherapist with plenty of experience in psychology and mindfulness, so you can have faith that the book’s teachings are rooted in science. This book is a great way to learn and apply mindfulness in bite-sized chunks, and with just under 100 pages, it is a quick read.

Available on Amazon.

The 5 Best Mindfulness Meditation Books

If you are interested in mindfulness meditation, this section is for you.

From guided mindfulness meditation sessions to a full mindfulness meditation program, the tools in these books can help you build or enrich your practice.


The Miracle of Mindfulness: An Introduction to the Practice of Meditation – Thich Nhat Hanh

Thich Nhat Hanh’s introduction to mindfulness meditation takes a casual approach by pointing out the opportunities for practicing mindfulness in the things you already do.

Rather than suggesting you set aside hours per week for mindfulness meditation, Nhat Hanh suggests practicing mindfulness while doing everyday things like washing the dishes.

Nhat Hanh is a Zen master who is well-respected in the mindfulness community and beyond—Martin Luther King Jr. even nominated Nhat Hanh for a Nobel Peace Prize.

For readers who prefer to learn from proven authorities, you cannot do much better than a book by Nhat Hanh.

Available on Amazon.


Mindfulness Meditation: Your Guide To Achieving A Life of Peace By Reducing Stress and Anxiety Through Mindfulness Meditation –  Daniel K. Barton

Daniel K. Barton’s book is an all-in-one guide to mindfulness meditation, covering the history of mindfulness meditation, the benefits of mindfulness, and the ways to practice it.

The author does not assume the reader has already decided to begin a mindfulness meditation practice—Barton explains to benefits before giving examples.

This book is a good option for people who like having a lot of information before they start doing something, as Barton is very convincing about the benefits of a mindfulness meditation practice.

Available on Amazon.


Five Minute Meditation: Mindfulness, Stress Relief, and Focus for Absolute Beginners – Lisa Shea

This mindfulness meditation handbook aims to help “absolute beginners” begin a meditation practice, starting with just five minutes a day. It is a very short read, and the Kindle edition is completely free, so readers have nothing to lose.

If you are already sold on mindfulness meditation but don’t know where to start, this is a good, low-commitment option. You might need to eventually supplement this book with something else on this list, but it’s still a great start.

Available on Amazon.


Real Happiness: The Power of Meditation: A 28-Day Program – Sharon Salzberg

On the opposite side of the spectrum is Real Happiness, a full mindfulness meditation program from Sharon Salzberg, a leading figure in the world of mindfulness and mindfulness meditation.

This book is written for newcomers to mindfulness meditation, and it provides four weeks of guidance. For people who want to get into mindfulness meditation but need a rigid schedule laid out for them, this is a great option.

Available on Amazon.


Mindfulness: A Mindful Eternity in Meditation: Mindfulness Meditation Guide for All and All Moments – Dhumavarna Patkar

This book is another how-to guide on mindfulness meditation, though it relates mindfulness to Buddhism more than the other books on this list. It discusses the history of mindfulness as it relates to Buddhism before instructing the reader on how to practice mindfulness meditation.

This is a good option for anyone who wants to learn mindfulness meditation with a focus on how it pertains to Buddhism, though its mindfulness teachings are solid on their own.

Available on Amazon.

Find a list of the best meditation books here.

Mindful Eating Books

Mindful eating is an antidote for emotional eating, in which people eat for reasons other than hunger.

Of course, emotional eating can lead to health problems, and that’s where mindfulness comes in. By harnessing the power of mindfulness when you eat, you can lead a healthier and more mindful life.


The Mindfulness-Based Eating Solution: Proven Strategies to End Overeating, Satisfy Your Hunger, and Savor Your Life – Lynn Rossy

This book aims to teach people about mindful eating so they can be happier with their bodies and lose weight if needed. It is written by Lynn Rossy, a clinical psychologist who’s on the board of directors for The Center for Mindful Eating.

The book helps readers be more mindful while eating by helping them figure out how to better understand their bodies and understand the reasons why they eat. If you often find yourself eating food just because you’re bored, or for any other reasons besides hunger, this book will give you the strategies you need to stop.

Available on Amazon.


Mindful Eating: A Guide to Rediscovering a Healthy and Joyful Relationship with Food – Jan Chozen Bays

This book on mindful eating comes from Jan Chozen Bays, a medical doctor who’s also a Zen master. The book helps people become more mindful by identifying eating habits and patterns and understanding when and why they eat.

It also includes a CD with guided meditation exercises. The included CD makes this book an excellent option for people who learn best from multiple forms of media, not just reading.

Available on Amazon.


Savor: Mindful Eating, Mindful Life – Thich Nhat Hanh and Lilian Cheung

This book is a collaboration between the aforementioned Thich Nhat Hanh and nutritionist Lilian Cheung, a lecturer at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

The two combine their expertise for a well-rounded approach to mindful eating backed by science. Anyone who is drawn to mindful eating for nutritional reasons should start with this book. The two authors’ wealth of knowledge of mindfulness and nutrition cannot be matched.

Available on Amazon.


50 Ways to Soothe Yourself Without Food – Susan Albers

For those of us who like having options, Susan Albers, who has a doctorate in psychology, has put together a great handbook for mindful eating outlining 50 ways to avoid eating food for the wrong reasons.

The author hopes that food cravings can be fought by turning to this book and trying one of the strategies. This book is a good option for people who do not need to be sold on mindful eating and are just looking for suggestions for how to start practicing it. It’s a good reference book to keep around for those times you need it most.

Available on Amazon.


Mindful Emotional Eating: Mindfulness Skills to Control Cravings, Eat in Moderation and Optimize Coping – Pavel G. Somov

Pavel G. Somov’s book on mindful eating might be most helpful for clinicians, though anyone who wants to start practicing mindful eating will find its lessons useful.

Somov, who is a licensed psychologist, believes that “emotional eating is a legitimate form of self-care” and argues that instead of avoiding emotional eating altogether, people can learn how not to overdo it.

Readers who are looking for a nonjudgmental overview of mindful eating techniques might appreciate this book more than some of the others on this list.

Available on Amazon.

Best Books on Mindful Parenting

Mindful parenting is a school of thought that aims to improve the lives of parents, kids, and families as a whole.

By teaching parents mindfulness strategies, parents can raise their children in a more holistic way, and even pass mindfulness techniques on to their children. This benefits the whole family.


Mindful Parenting: Simple and Powerful Solutions for Raising Creative, Engaged, Happy Kids in Today’s Hectic World – Kristen Race

Kristen Race’s book aims to teach parents how to raise their kids in a world filled with stress. Race is an expert in family psychology who aims to help parents and children reduce their stress levels while recognizing that stress is unavoidable.

The author has two children of her own, so you can trust that her teachings are based on real-world experience.

Available on Amazon.


Mindful Discipline: A Loving Approach to Setting Limits and Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child – Shauna Shapiro and Chris White

Mindful Discipline is a dual effort from Shauna Shapiro, a clinical psychologist and mindfulness expert, and Chris White, a pediatrician and life coach. This combined experience leads to a holistic approach to mindful parenting that combines neuroscience and mindfulness.

The authors’ goal with the book is to teach parents five simple principles for raising their children with confidence, starting with unconditional love and ending with learning from mistakes. This is a book for parents who want teachings that integrate neuroscience and social psychology.

Available on Amazon.


The Awakened Family: A Revolution in Parenting – Shefali Tsabary

The Awakened Family is another offering from a clinical psychologist, and this one comes recommended by Oprah Winfrey. Author Shefali Tsabary prides herself on combining Western and Eastern teachings.

The goal of this book is to help parents raise children who can thrive, starting by increasing the well-being of the parents themselves.

Available on Amazon.


The Mindful Child: How to Help Your Kid Manage Stress and Become Happier, Kinder, and More Compassionate – Susan Kaiser Greenland

Susan Kaiser Greenland’s book is based on her mindful parenting program, which has been endorsed by the Mindfulness Awareness Research Center at the University of California, Los Angeles. In this book, Greenland teaches parents a step-by-step approach for teaching their children mindfulness tools for overcoming stress.

The teachings in the book are aimed at a wide range of children, ranging from 4 to 18 years old, so all parents can find value in it. The teachings are organized in a way that’s easy-to-follow for parents who do not have experience with psychology or mindfulness.

Available on Amazon.


The Mindful Parent: Strategies from Peaceful Cultures to Raise Compassionate, Competent Kids – Charlotte Peterson

Charlotte Peterson’s book takes a different approach from the other books on this list. The author, a child psychologist, spent years observing parenting strategies in different Eastern cultures and condensed her research into this book aimed at parents in the West.

The point of the book is to teach parents how to organize their lives to best fit their children’s (and their own) needs. Any parent looking for a way to use mindfulness to increase their family’s well-being can find value in this compilation of mindful parenting strategies from around the world.

Available on Amazon.

Better Start Young: The Best Mindfulness Books for Kids

While mindful parenting includes ways for parents to teach mindfulness to their kids, these books cut out the middleman and present mindfulness techniques directly to children in ways they can understand.

These books are suited for children who are interested in mindfulness on their own, as well as for kids whose parents are not sure if they can commit to mindful parenting. Of course, using these books in combination with mindful parenting books is an excellent option as well.


Sitting Still Like a Frog: Mindfulness Exercises for Kids (and Their Parents) – Eline Snel

This book is aimed at children from ages 5-12 who struggle with anxiety, emotions, and other challenging aspects of childhood. After explaining the benefits of mindfulness, the book provides 11 mindfulness exercises that children can easily add to their schedules.

The book also includes a CD with guided meditations read by Myla Kabat-Zinn, who, along with her husband Jon (discussed later in the article), is a major figure in mindfulness.

The author has years of experience with mindfulness and mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) in particular, so Sitting Still Like a Frog is an excellent choice for anyone looking to share mindfulness with their children.

Available on Amazon.


Mindfulness for Teen Anxiety: A Workbook for Overcoming Anxiety at Home, at School, and Everywhere Else – Christopher Willard

Christopher Willard’s mindfulness book is aimed at teenagers, as indicated by the title. The author, who is a psychologist and learning specialist, shares mindfulness strategies teenagers can use to soothe their anxiety and other social worries in order to enjoy their adolescence.

The book focuses on all the areas of a teenager’s life, from home to school to relationships, so the mindfulness techniques can benefit any teenager dealing with anxiety.

Available on Amazon.


Mindful Games: Sharing Mindfulness and Meditation with Children, Teens, and Families – Susan Kaiser Greenland

This book from Susan Kaiser Greenland is aimed more directly at children than her mindful parenting book listed above. Greenland has compiled more than 50 games and activities that kids and their families can enjoy on their way to learning and practicing mindfulness.

The book focuses on teaching attention, balance, and compassion, along with concentration skills, so most kids can learn from its teachings. Since this book teaches mindfulness in a fun way, family members might find it a useful tool for sharing mindfulness with each other.

Available on Amazon.


Yoga and Mindfulness Practices for Children Card Deck – Jennifer Cohen Harper

Jennifer Cohen Harper’s card deck also offers 50 ways for children to practice mindfulness. These exercises are split into five categories: connect, breathe, move, focus, and relax. The card deck is illustrated by Karen Gilmour, a children’s yoga teacher, so the pictures are true-to-life.

Clinicians who work with children might find this a helpful tool in their practice. A sample of a few of the book’s cards can be accessed here.

Available on Amazon.


Mindfulness Skills for Kids & Teens: A Workbook for Clinicians & Clients with 154 Tools, Techniques, Activities & Worksheets – Debra Burdick

If you want more than 50 techniques, this book triples that number and presents over 150 mindfulness tools for children and adolescents. These tools are meant to explain mindfulness in kid-friendly ways, allowing children to gain their own mindfulness skills and letting children track their mindfulness practices.

Some of the tools are targeted at particular age groups, but because there are so many options available, there is value in this book for children and adolescents of all ages. This book is a versatile option for multi-children households, and it will remain relevant as kids get older.

Available on Amazon.

Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) Books

Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) is an eight-week program inspired by mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR).

MBCT is often a group therapy treatment plan designed for people struggling with major depressive disorder.

Some of the following books might be helpful for clinicians with depressive patients who could benefit from MBCT, while others might be helpful for people suffering from depression.


Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for Dummies – Patrizia Collard

Even if you don’t consider yourself a dummy, therapist Patrizia Collard’s book is an excellent guide to MBCT. Along with introducing the reader to MBCT, the book includes access to downloadable guided meditations you can use when undergoing or administering the eight-week course.

This book is an excellent starting point for learning about MBCT. It can be helpful to show clinicians how an MBCT program might look, as well as to show patients what they should expect before beginning an MBCT program.

Available on Amazon.


Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy: Distinctive Features – Rebecca Crane

Rebecca Crane’s book is for clinical practitioners who want to learn about MBCT. Crane presents the concept by describing 30 features of the program that define it and set it apart.

It should be noted that the book specifically focuses on MBCT “that is offered in a group context to those who are vulnerable to depressive relapses,” so it is most applicable to that situation.

Still, it can serve as a general overview of MBCT. This book might not be helpful for people dealing with major depressive disorder, as it is mostly intended to train clinicians.

Available on Amazon.


Building Competence in Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy: Transcripts and Insights for Working With Stress, Anxiety, Depression, and Other Problems – Richard W. Sears

Richard W. Sears’s book aims to serve as an example of a full eight-week MBCT program. It is the next best thing to actually experiencing an MBCT program, and the author shares insights that can help someone administering an MBCT program.

This is a good option for someone who wants to know what an MBCT program actually looks like in practice before administering one on their own.

Available on Amazon.


Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for Anxious Children: A Manual for Treating Childhood Anxiety – Randye J. Semple and Jennifer Lee

Clinical psychologists Randye J. Semple and Jennifer Lee’s MBCT book is the only one on this list focused on children. It is particularly aimed at 9- to 12-year-olds, so it would be most useful for practitioners dealing with preteens.

The book describes how to treat a child with a 12-session MBCT program and includes supplementary poems and activities to deepen a child’s engagement with the program. This book is the clear choice for anyone interested in MBCT specifically for children.

Available on Amazon.


The Mindful Way Workbook: An 8-Week Program to Free Yourself from Depression and Emotional Distress – John D. Teasdale, Mark Williams, Zindel V. Segal, and Jon Kabat-Zinn

This book is written for people who think they could benefit from MBCT, not just clinicians.

It offers mindfulness practices, guided meditations (which are downloadable to download as well as on an included CD), and a way to track your progress in the mindfulness program. It is a great option for people who wish to learn on their own.

Available on Amazon.

“Mindfulness: Finding Peace in a Frantic World”

While the previous section highlighted five different books dedicated to MBCT, Mindfulness: An Eight-Week Plan for Finding Peace in a Frantic World by Mark Williams and Danny Penman (2012), merits consideration by itself.

The authors present teachings from MBCT in ways that readers can use to improve their own lives. By dedicating 20 minutes or fewer a day to learning about MBCT, readers who struggle with depression or are otherwise stressed can find techniques to cope.

The foreword of this edition is by Jon Kabat-Zinn, whose work we’ll cover in the next section.

Available on Amazon.

Jon Kabat-Zinn’s Books

Jon Kabat-Zinn studied Buddhism under  Thich Nhat Hanh and went on to found the Oasis Center for Mindfulness at the University of Massachusetts Medical School.

Kabat-Zinn is also the creator of mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), an eight-week course that teaches how to manage stress with mindfulness.

He has been a major figure in popularizing mindfulness teachings in the West, and he’s written too many valuable books to pick just one for this list. Mindfulness beginners, as well as experienced practitioners, will likely find value in these offerings.


Mindfulness for Beginners: Reclaiming the Present Moment – and Your Life” – Jon Kabat-Zinn

Although this article already had a section on mindfulness books for beginners, Kabat-Zinn’s offering deserves its own mention. This book is meant to be read either all at once or little by little. Reading it is a versatile way to learn about mindfulness from the man who popularized it in the West.

It also includes a CD with guided mindfulness meditation sessions, helpful for people who like having audio cues.

Available on Amazon.


Full Catastrophe Living (Revised Edition): Using the Wisdom of Your Body and Mind to Face Stress, Pain, and Illness – Jon Kabat-Zinn

The first edition of this book was first published over two decades ago in 1990, yet still stands tall as a great entry point into the field of mindfulness.

It includes a long overview of mindfulness and the science behind it (with this edition updated to include more recent studies), and it serves as a comprehensive handbook on mindfulness for anyone interested in the field. People who prefer the scientific side of mindfulness might find this to be their favorite book from Kabat-Zinn.

Available on Amazon.


Wherever You Go, There You Are – Jon Kabat-Zinn

This follow-up to Full Catastrophe Living is a more condensed overview of mindfulness that’s more focused on mindfulness meditation. This makes it a better option for someone who is more interested in the meditation aspect of mindfulness, as well as someone who is looking for a shorter book.

It has been a bestseller for decades meaning countless other people have found it helpful, so you might too.

Available on Amazon.


Coming to Our Senses: Healing Ourselves and the World Through Mindfulness – Jon Kabat-Zinn

Released well after Wherever You Go, There You Are, this book is an updated overview of mindfulness for anyone interested in its teachings. It is much longer than Wherever You Go, There You Are, and the fact that it was published more recently makes it a good option for someone who wants more up-to-date scientific evidence for mindfulness.

This book focuses on the relationship between our minds and bodies, so people interested in mind-body integration should find it interesting. Of course, it is also a good option for anyone who has read and liked Kabat-Zinn’s other books.

Available on Amazon.


Arriving at Your Own Door: 108 Lessons in Mindfulness – Jon Kabat-Zinn

Finally, at 160 pages, Kabat-Zinn’s Arriving at Your Own Door is easily the shortest book of his on this list, making it the clear option for fans of brevity.

Just as it sounds, it is a collection of over 100 mindfulness lessons. As a series of bite-sized reflections, this book can be used as a daily teacher when it comes to mindfulness, for those of us who could use a reminder every now and then to be mindful. It can also be a great way to start learning about Kabat-Zinn’s teachings with minimal commitment.

Available on Amazon.

Freely Available Mindfulness PDFs

Free PDFs are always an excellent learning tool, as they are accessible to anyone with an internet connection and can be shared very easily.

Here are a few great choices to learn about mindfulness in the cheapest way possible. If you like these books, you can share them with anyone willing to learn.

Mindfulness Meditation for Beginners – Sean Fargo

This free PDF can be a great introduction to mindfulness meditation for a self-motivated learner. It functions as a journal as well as an idea guide—it prompts you to try an exercise then allows you to write down how it made you feel.

It is also a great collection of mindfulness exercises that anyone can use to start practicing. The book can be viewed in-browser or downloaded and shared, making it easy to spread the joy of mindfulness meditation with friends.

Anapanasanti – Mindfulness of Breathing – Buddhadàsa Bhikkhu

The contents of this free ebook were originally delivered as a series of lectures on mindful breathing to a group of monks. It is a good option for those who want their mindfulness teachings to be explicitly based on Buddhism.

Intended to be a manual for mindful breathing, this guide can be an extensive introduction for beginners who do not have access to a teacher of their own.

That is to say, it is not for people looking for a breezy introduction to mindfulness.

The Proactive Twelve Steps: 12 Steps Workbook – Serge Prengel

Finally, Serge Prengel’s workbook is meant to help people use mindfulness in order to recover from addiction. It was inspired by the original 12-step program for alcohol recovery used in Alcoholics Anonymous, though it is retooled to de-emphasize the presence of a higher power for anyone who feels uncomfortable with that idea.

Instead, it is meant to encourage personal growth and transformation from within. People who have undergone a 12-step program may also find value in this as a supplement.

Audiobooks on Mindfulness

Some of us prefer listening to audiobooks over reading, while others like the convenience of “reading” an audiobook while doing other things, like driving.

Whatever your reasoning, here are five great audiobooks on mindfulness you might enjoy. One of them is so good that we mention it here for the second time.

1. Mindfulness Meditation for Pain Relief: Guided Practices for Reclaiming Your Body and Your Life – Jon Kabat-Zinn

Kabat-Zinn is so highly regarded in the mindfulness community that we felt it necessary to dedicate a section to him above. We also felt that he deserves to be the first author mentioned in this section.

In this audiobook, Kabat-Zinn explains mindfulness meditation and leads guided meditation sessions, so this is a good option for someone looking for both. Since the meditations are specifically geared toward pain relief, this audiobook is a great option for someone who is in pain and finds sitting down to read uncomfortable.

2. The Art of Meditation – Daniel Goleman

This audiobook CD has a simple goal that it executes well: presenting four different guided meditation sessions you can follow and practice with. This audiobook includes a body scan meditation, a walking meditation, a breathing meditation, and finally a general mindfulness meditation.

This audiobook is especially useful for people seeking mindfulness for several different reasons, and listeners might even find a benefit from mindfulness that they didn’t know they needed.

3. Mindfulness: An Eight-Week Plan for Finding Peace in a Frantic World – Mark Williams & Danny Penman

The audiobook version of this book, which we already included in another section of this list, can be helpful for people who find it hard to follow a program while reading and prefer to listen instead.

This audiobook will walk you through the entire eight-week program. You can even put it on your phone or MP3 player and have a full mindfulness program available to you at all times.

4. Mindful Birthing: Training the Mind, Body, and Heart for Childbirth and Beyond – Nancy Bardacke

As the title suggests, this audiobook has a rather limited focus: It’s targeted to expecting families who want to use mindfulness to ease their pregnancy as well as the birthing process.

This audiobook uses mindfulness to ease an expecting family’s fears going into childbirth and should help to reduce stress at every step.

It is written by a nurse, midwife, and mindfulness teacher with lots of experience relevant to mindful birthing.

5. Joyful Wisdom – Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche

For those who want mindfulness that is based in Buddhism, Joyful Wisdom is the way to go. In it, the author explains how to deal with anxiety in the modern world. It is not an audiobook of guided meditation sessions, but one to be listened to as a lesson and as a story.

This audiobook will give any practitioner of mindfulness and Buddhism plenty to think about long after finishing it, as the author is a respected meditation master.

A Take-Home Message

Although we have listed many of our favorites above, there are countless books out there that can help you learn about and practice mindfulness. Whatever your learning style or experience level, and whatever you need mindfulness for in your life, we hope this page has a book for you. Even better, we hope it has several.

Do you have a favorite mindfulness book not included on this list? What do you think of our selections? Let us know in the comment section.

The best books on meditation: a list of the most effective

The pandemic and forced self-isolation are sources of stress, anxiety, many additional problems and negative emotions. To successfully cope with daily worries and maintain mental health in quarantine, WHO recommends meditation. Research shows that it reduces stress and improves quality of life. It's time to learn more about this practice with our selection of the best books on meditation.

Awareness Daniel Siegel

Daniel Siegel is an American professor of psychiatry and the author of several studies on brain function and mindfulness. His latest book is about meditation. In it, Siegel makes a scientific case for meditation exercises and talks about his own technique called the Wheel of Awareness. This is not a fundamentally new practice, but rather a useful metaphor that helps to understand the basics of meditation. This is a handy tool for managing attention, emotions, thinking for beginners. An important advantage of the book is specific advice on how to use the experience gained during meditation in everyday life. nine0003

One Habit a Week by Brett Blumenthal

Brett Blumenthal is a certified lifestyle coach and consultant for leading American companies. In the bestselling book One Habit a Week, she details her "small change" methodology.

To improve the quality of life, you need to take small steps: develop one simple habit every week. One of the most important is just meditation. She has a detailed chapter. For experienced meditators, the information will not be enough, but for beginners, this is a great start. The book motivates, adjusts to success, energizes. nine0003

"Silence", Tit Nat Khan

Tit Nhat Khan is a Buddhist monk, one of the most famous spiritual leaders in the world. During his long life he wrote dozens of books. "Silence" is dedicated to meditation as a way of life.

Tit Nat Khan offers to treat yourself and life consciously, attentively, with joy. To do this, you need to learn to stop the flow of thoughts, fight negative attitudes, listen to yourself, find a connection with other people. The author teaches to treat meditation not as a training for certain achievements, but as a pleasant activity for the soul. "Silence" is not just a useful practical guide. This is a book-meditation, already reading it relaxes, calms, teaches you to simply contemplate. nine0003

“Catch a big fish. Meditation, Mindfulness, Creativity, David Lynch

David Lynch is a well-known American director, a recognized master of cinema, the creator of the cult films Mulholland Drive, The Elephant Man and the TV series Twin Peaks. Lynch is a fan of transcendental meditation. He described his experience in the 2006 bestseller Catching a Big Fish.

Unlike classical practices, transcendental meditation does not require contemplation or concentration. This technique is characterized by minimal human control. And it is based on the natural repetition of mantras without the use of mental effort. nine0003

The main idea of ​​Lynch's book is that all important information is already within us. Transcendental Meditation will help you look deep into yourself to "catch the big fish" - a good idea. This book is ideal for creative people and for those who are in search of inspiration. It also has a lot of autobiographical moments, which will appeal to fans of the director.

“How to turn on awareness. Techniques for Effective Practices and Meditations in the Modern World, Rohan Ganatileik

British developer Rohan Ganatileik is best known for the popular and successful meditation app Buddhify. He also wrote How to Turn on Mindfulness, a useful and practical meditation guide for busy city dwellers.

The purpose of the book is to provide simple, effective and understandable techniques for the so-called mobile meditation, adapted to modern realities. When there is not enough time, you can meditate on the subway, on a walk, while reading, in bed before going to bed. It doesn't take much effort. The author offers several dozen options for mobile meditation - everyone will find something for themselves. nine0003

Meditation and mindfulness. 10 minutes a day that will put your thoughts in order, Andy Puddicombe

Andy Puddicombe is a former Buddhist monk and promoter of meditation in the modern world. After returning from the monastery to the UK, Puddicombe founded the Headspace interactive meditation training system, and a little later he created the book Meditation and Mindfulness based on it.

This is the perfect book for beginners: it has a solid and understandable theory, some life stories to motivate you, and step-by-step exercises that only take 10 minutes a day. There are also answers to common beginner questions that are so lacking in other books: should I feel something while meditating, that if I fall asleep during practice, do all people have the ability to concentrate? Read and find out. nine0003

Silence Speaks Eckhart Tolle

Eckhart Tolle is a German writer and philosopher, bestselling author of The Power of Now about living in the moment, awareness, inner transformation. His new work "Silence Speaks" can be called a reprint of the first. In it, the same ideas are succinctly presented in the style of ancient Indian sutras, prompting reflection and discovery with their understatement.

"Silence speaks" will teach you to live in the present, to find joy within yourself, to feel harmony with yourself. This book should be read thoughtfully, with pleasure, completely immersed in the process. It can be re-read many times, returning to the deepest and most exciting moments. nine0003

Ken Wilber Integral Meditation

Ken Wilber is an American thinker, the author of an integral approach system that combines all areas of life into a single model. He applied this approach to meditation, combining classical practices with new ideas about the horizontal and vertical levels of consciousness. He outlined his views in the book "Integral Meditation".

Integral meditation promotes both spiritual and personal development: it gives access to the depths of consciousness and helps to better understand oneself, while at the same time establishing relationships with the outside world. This is not a simple reading that requires mental effort. The author offers a fresh and curious approach for experienced meditation lovers. nine0003

The Art of Dreaming, Carlos Castaneda

"The Art of Dreaming" is one of the last books of the famous writer, philosopher and esotericist Carlos Castaneda. Like the rest of his bestsellers, this is a completely non-standard and ambiguous book that baffles some readers and delights others.

The Art of Dreaming repeats already familiar terms and ideas of Castaneda, so reading the book is easier for those who are already familiar with the author's works. But this time, the writer focused on lucid dreams as a way to look at the world and yourself in a different way, in order to gain confidence and peace of mind. In this book, Castaneda, under the guidance of his teacher don Juan, masters the ability to travel in the world of his own dreams and communicate with its inhabitants. This is a comprehensive guide to mastering lucid dreams. It can also be used for mind-expanding meditative reading. nine0003

“Buddha, the brain and the neurophysiology of happiness. How to change life for the better, Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche

Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche is a Buddhist monk from Nepal. In 2002, at the request of the Dalai Lama, he took part in a study on the neurophysiology of the brain. The research was carried out at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He combined the resulting knowledge with Buddhist wisdom and ancient meditation practices to produce the bestseller Buddha, the Brain, and the Neurophysiology of Happiness. nine0003

Mingyur Rinpoche's book is the most versatile, informative and complete of our collection. It is suitable for everyone: beginners, amateurs interested in the neurophysiology of the brain, or followers of Buddhism. An important strength of this book is its sound scientific approach: it describes in detail how and why meditation affects the human brain.

Read "Mindful Meditation. A Practical Guide to Reducing Pain and Stress" - Burch Vidyamala - Page 1

Vidyamala Burch, Denny Penman

© 2013 Danny Penman and Vidyamala Burch

This edition is published by arrangement with Curtis Brown UK and The Van Lear Agency LLC

© Russian translation, Russian edition, layout. LLC "Mann, Ivanov and Ferber", 2014

All rights reserved. No part of the electronic version of this book may be reproduced in any form or by any means, including posting on the Internet and corporate networks, for private and public use, without the written permission of the copyright owner. nine0154

Legal support of the publishing house is provided by Vegas Lex law firm

© Electronic version of the book prepared by Litres (www.litres.ru)

* * *

To my dear daughter Sasha May Penman.


To all the people at Breathworks, a deep thank you for sharing my vision and helping bring ideas to life.


Please take care of your own body. If you have any doubts about any aspect of the program, please consult your doctor. If you are already in a physical therapy or rehabilitation program that is working for you, keep doing it along with the exercises in the book. Meditation is not a substitute for medical treatment. Please do not change the amount of medication you take without first consulting with your doctor. You may be able to reduce the doses of your prescribed medications, but be sure to do so gradually and under supervision. Even if you find that lowering your dose is unacceptable to you, mindfulness will still help you improve your quality of life by making it richer and more varied. nine0003

There are several ways to supplement the course described in this book. You can do this in a group through the Breathworks organization: online or in the city where you live. You can also count on personalized coaching and support (for more information on accredited Breathworks trainers, visit www.breathworks-mindfulness.org.uk).

Foreword by Mark Williams

The teaching of mindfulness meditation is based on an interesting paradox. Mindfulness means “attention, awareness,” but when a person is in pain due to a chronic illness or injury, the suffering seems to take away too much his attention. What would be the use of being even more aware of these sensations?

In this beautiful and compassionate book, Vidyamala Birch and Danny Penman explain how certain subtle processes in our minds turn on automatically and only add to the level of discomfort we so desperately want to get rid of. And precisely because these aggravating factors operate automatically and without your knowledge, concentration is required. If all this happens deep inside you, you are left at a loss, alone with painful sensations. But if you manage to shed light and direct attention to these problems, they will begin to dissolve. nine0003

Vidyamala and Danny don't just give a clear and up-to-date scientific explanation of how it happens, the book contains step-by-step instructions to help you overcome your pain. At the heart of this program is a series of short meditations that help you develop the courage to approach the center of intense sensations, explore them in a friendly and curious way, in order to catch the moment when automatic reactions begin to take over your consciousness. They clearly show which activities help and which harm you and how to “twist” your mind, often sharp and unforgiving, to openness and compassion. Ironically, it is this process that helps to dissolve much of the suffering that previously seemed inevitable. nine0003

I have been fortunate to know both Vidyamala and Danny for many years. They write from their own experience: both know what it is like to suffer from pain that once seemed unbearable. For Vidyamala, this happened when she pulled a man out of a pool while exercising, and was aggravated five years later by a car accident. Danny was in severe pain after falling from a paraglider. In the book, they describe their experience and how they found themselves in a seemingly hopeless trap. However, they found a way to liberation from suffering in the practice of mindful meditation. Based on her experience, Vidyamala wrote the book Living Well with Pain and Illness[1] and founded the Breathworks organization, which helps those suffering from chronic illness and stress. Her books, patient care and teaching have helped countless people. Through an accident, Danny discovered Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT), and wrote eloquently about this approach in his book Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy. How to find harmony in our crazy world ”[2], which helped a huge number of people and gained great popularity. nine0003

The book you hold in your hands contains many inspiring stories of people who lost hope after illness, accident or injury. For some of them, the advances of modern science in understanding the mechanisms of pain—and the evidence that mindfulness can provide an entirely new approach to it—have prompted them to take part in mindfulness meditation classes. However, while science can help you make the first move when the going gets tough, it does little to keep you motivated. And it is at this point that the system that builds the mindfulness meditation technique and philosophy of John Kabat-Zinn[3], the pioneer of using this approach in modern health care, comes into play. He claims that, despite any injuries and illnesses, while a person breathes, he is rather alive than vice versa. nine0003

In the light of this understanding, a conscious approach to healing the body and mind calls for seeing in each person resources that he may not be aware of, because no one taught him how to find and develop them. Pain cannot be ignored or driven away from oneself. However, behind her piercing voice, you need to see a deep and holistic component that no disease can break and which can be rediscovered. To do this, you need to show attention and kindness to your body for at least a second and feel it subtly, despite the fact that it seems to let us down so much.

Learn more