Many people ask me what I am currently reading, or if I have any books I would recommend to help them start with a mindfulness practice. Not all of these are wired for beginning a meditation practice, but if they are posted here, they encouraged some insight in my personal and professional application of meditation either in my own life or in my teachings to others.
If you are self-curious, then this is the book club for you.
My reading year, 2019
Here are the books I read in 2019, in no order other than the order in which I read them:
In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts by Gabor Mate, MD
A deep examination of addiction through attachment based theory. This book considers a holistic approach to addiction and questions the causes of addiction, the nature of addiction, the physiological and neurological realms of addiction, the question of an addicts choice in behavior, why the “war on drugs” is a failure and what the path for redeeming addicted minds and how to approach healing in our current culture. I found it utterly fascinating! And would recommend it if you or anyone you know is facing addiction of any kind. It also gave me insight into how to coach my clients and how to reduce addictive behavior before it even starts.
Presence by Amy Cuddy
This book was recommended to me by a friend one day while I was sitting at the pool. I ordered it on the spot and completed it poolside over the course of the next week. It is an easy read, enjoyable and applicable. Amy is a Harvard Business professor who is known for a TED talk she presented in 2012. Although I found this book a bit sophomoric for my understanding of this topic, I would definitely recommend it to anyone looking for a book to start with. She captures the research in a way most everyone can understand. And most people I find need the added padding and conviction of science to get on board with the work of “presence.”
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Compassionomics by Stephen Trzeciak and Anthony Mazzarelli
Almost upon a dare these two impeccable researchers set out to see how compassion training would impact the world of healthcare. Debunking their own beliefs they discovered that compassion would greatly benefit all realms of the healthcare system. They examined the crushing financial debt, overall patient care and satisfaction, and the impact on medical personal and staff. As if we needed ALL-OF-THIS research to know that compassion works. This is a must read for healthcare professionals! Compassion might even single-handedly course correct our current cultural healthcare crisis.