Mind Your Life: Book Review

I received this book for free to review from the Speakeasy blogging book review network.

I am excited to share my review of Mind Your Life:  How Mindfulness Can Build Resilience and Reveal Your Extraordinary by Meg Salter.

As an Integral Master Coach™ and Executive Coach, Meg brings a comprehensive, evidence-based approach to how people develop that supports transformational learning in my clients. As a Mindfulness Coach, Meg has trained with many senior teachers and practiced meditation since 1995, gaining profound experience while pursuing a career and raising children. Learn more about Meg at Meg Salter.

I practice Centering Prayer. I was curious about what I might learn about mindfulness so I decided to peruse this book. Let me share what I found interesting.

Why Practice Mindfulness?

“A hot topic of research, mindfulness has been shown to reduce stress, improve overall well-being, re-wire the brain for focus and foster empathy and positive relationships”

“How do you prevent constant stress from becoming distress? How do you connect to your own inner voice in the midst of demands for 24/7 availability?”

I also find that my centering prayer practice reduces my stress, helps me to better focus during the day and slows me down so I consciously take the time to listen to others:  foster empathy and maintain better relationships with others.

My centering prayer practice connects me to my Inner Voice both during my silent sits and during the active parts of my day. My Inner Voice is God within me who is delighted to be my constant companion and life long partner!

What Is Mindfulness?

“Conceptually, mindfulness means paying attention to what’s happening in the present moment in the mind, body and external environment, with an attitude of curiosity and kindness.”

Mindfulness practices help one to walk through life in this manner. I have found that my centering prayer practice also helps me to be more fully present with an attitude of curiosity and kindness.

Centering prayer slows me down and helps me to better focus and embrace the present moment as it is without judgement.

Fruits of Mindfulness

“I am more comfortable with ambiguity, able to rest in that creative space of possibility between the old and the new.”

“Meditation has been what makes life beautiful, robust and meaningful.” These are comments by an interviewee within the book.”

“A central claim of mindfulness is that it improves concentration and focus.”

“Resilience muscles that you build while meditating become strong enough to kick in naturally in daily life, when the stakes are high and you need them the most.”

“By developing greater moment-by-moment awareness, we tap in to new possibilities.”

All of these are wonderful fruits that I have also seen within my everyday life as a result of my centering prayer practice.

Mindfulness Techniques

“I will provide clear instruction on a range of techniques, giving you ample opportunity to pick those that appeal to you.”

Meg shares a plethora of techniques:  Feel-See-Hear, Noting, Just Feel, Just See, Just Hear, Note Everything, Focus Out, Focus In, Focus on Rest, Focus on Flow.

I was a bit overwhelmed by all of the practices mentioned and will need a second run through the book to hone in on the one or two that might appeal to me.

Next Steps

“All mindfulness teachers—indeed all spiritual leaders—say the way to judge the efficacy of your practice is by looking to the long-term effects on your life.”

I feel the same way about centering prayer. A twice per day centering prayer practice kept up daily, weekly, monthly, yearly will transform you as you continue to open to the presence and actions of the Divine within.

I encourage you take a look at this book if you wish to learn more about mindfulness and its wonderful long term benefits on your mental and physical health.

Go Further

I encourage you to take a look at Living with the Mind of Christ. Part of this book by Stefan Gillow Reynolds explores: Jesus, Teacher of Mindfulness and What is Mindfulness in two of its chapters.

Opening to Our Lives with Jon Kabat-Zin: An 8-week immersive online learning experience in mindfulness meditation. Jon Kabat-Zinn has learned, through science and experience, about mindfulness as a way of life. This is wisdom with immediate relevance to the ordinary and extreme stresses of our time – from economic peril, to parenting, to life in a digital age.

Try Audible and Get Two Free Audiobooks – This is a great way to listen to books with your cell phone while you drive, walk or relax at home.  I frequently listen in my car during my commute to and from work.  I’m a proud affiliate.

Holy Silence: The Quaker Way by J. Brent Bill:  Quaker silence is not about stillness, as such, but rather about encountering God in a living and vital holy hush. This e-course encourages women and men to undertake a journey of spiritual silence. The destination is a quiet inner place where God teaches us directly. Friends (as Quakers are formally known) have been honing their take on silence for more than 350 years. It’s a silence that invites us to an immediate and personal encounter with God. That’s because Quakers believe that when we are silent, then the Spirit of God grants us insights, guidance, and understanding of spiritual truth.

How might your life change if you were steeped more deeply in the wisdom of the Christian Mystics? Drawing on the best available writing on the topic of Christian Mysticism both ancient and modern, Contemplative Light is offering a special course on the Christian Mystics Sacred Lives: An Introduction To The Christian Mystics.

Writing as a Spiritual Practice: This course helps you to access the rich spiritual stories that lie deeply within you. Words are powerful. The words that you write can be used to:

  • help you understand yourself better – and therefore divine God’s purpose in your life
  • facilitate healing of spiritual wounds
  • minister to others more effectively
  • share your testimonies of how God has worked in your life

Contemplative Practices: 5 Ways of Consenting to the Divine – Learn methods practiced by Christian mystics for centuries to consent to the action and presence of God within, including Centering Prayer, The Examen, Lectio Divina, Christian Meditation, and the Jesus Prayer.

How to Write a Devotional: Plus How to Get Them Published – If you read devotionals, you already know how they can be a true blessing. A devotional can uplift you when you’re feeling discouraged, sad or lonely. It can allow you to feel a keen sense of fellowship with another Christian, even if the two of you never actually meet. And, if you are feeling called to write devotionals, know that you have a unique opportunity to bless others and make a genuine difference in their lives. This course takes you step by step through the process, and then guides you towards publishing, if that is your goal.

Drawing from the wisdom of monastic life, modern psychology and best practices in personal productivity, the Monk Manual provides a daily system that will help you find clarity, purpose, wisdom, and peace in the moments that make up your life.  

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