A Physician’s No-Nonsense Guide to Meditation for Beginners
- Book Type: Paperback
- ISBN#: 978-1-64250-437-8
- Publishing Date: Jan 19, 2021
- Page Count: 312
- Price: $18.95
Debut author Sazima’s work as a practicing psychiatrist in San Jose, California, often brought him into contact with people who wanted to be “collaborators in their treatment.” He and his colleagues noticed that several patients seemed stuck in a cycle of poor health. However, after the author established a class on the basics of breath control and meditation, some patients quickly showed improvement, he says. Sazima goes on to recommend these same methods to his readers, offering a series of painless, jargon-free introductions to their basic tenets. His overviews present clear instructions and explanations, as when he urges the reader to concentrate, during meditation sessions, on the simple beating of one’s heart: “The stilling of activity to allow witness of the heart beating,” he writes, “can itself bring great calm, even literally allowing that beat to gently rock the body at rest.” In addition to these general approaches, Sazima also provides a steady thread of simple encouragements aimed specifically at beginners who might be frustrated by minimal initial progress: “The overall trajectory for just about everybody…is of overall improvement.” The combination of Sazima’s expertise and upbeat spirit make his book an inviting reading experience. It also uses helpful photos, graphs,and illustrations to make its points, and Sazima makes the inspired decision to often adopt a carefree, joking tone; he knows that his subject may be intimidating to newcomers, and his occasional wisecracks (such as the chapter title “You’d Better Sit Down for This: A Few Preparatory Words on, uh, Sitting”) effectively work to defuse that reaction. At the same time, he makes it clear throughout his book that the key enemy of meditation is distraction and that regaining the power to focus is of great value.
An insightful and demystifying look at mindfulness practice.
“Practical Mindfulness is a gem of a book designed to help incorporate mindfulness into our lives. Greg Sazima knows his audience. He writes with wisdom, insight, and humor and in an original voice. This practical and highly readable book integrates helpful case examples and exercises with mindfulness knowledge.”
Melanie Greenberg, PhD
Melanie Greenberg, PhD, Psychotherapist and author, Marin, CA; Author, The Stress-Proof Brain
“What a delightful, fun and informative book. It’s a very practical guide to anyone wanting to learn more about meditation and to anyone wanting to enhance their experience with meditation. Dr. Sazima has a great way with words and takes you on a enjoyable journey to enlightenment, peace and harmony. As some one who meditates daily, I thoroughly enjoyed the book and will recommend it to all my friends, family, colleagues and clients.”
Roland Williams, MA, LAADC, NCACII, CADCII, ACRPS, SAP
Roland Williams, MA, LAADC, NCACII, CADCII, ACRPS, SAP, Master Addictions Counselor, Educator, Consultant; Author of Recovery is a Verb
“I wholeheartedly recommend Dr. Greg Sazima’s book, Practical Mindfulness. It is an extremely user-friendly book that is essential to both everyday users who need new skills for how to be “in the here and now” and deal with stress, as well as a wonderful read for mental health professionals to add to their tool bag of counseling skills. I teach Motivational Psychology and plan to add this book as required reading for both my undergraduate and graduate students.”
Holly Davani, MA, HPI
Holly Davani, MA, HPI, Certified behavioral trainer, Baltimore, MD; Associate Graduate Faculty, Department of Psychology, Towson University
“As a psychiatrist, I regularly recommend mindfulness meditation because I know I am supposed to, but I always felt intimidated when I would try it myself. Dr. Sazima’s humor and humanity make this practical guide just the right place to start, or jumpstart, your own mindfulness practice. Practical Mindfulness is the one book I recommend to my patients, even when they don’t believe they want to start meditating.”
Lisa Goldstein, MD
Lisa Goldstein, MD, Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist, Philadelphia, PA
Practical Mindfulness is a clearly written guide to the practice of meditation and mindfulness. Step by step, Dr. Sazima leads us through exercises that lead to deeper meditation, while at the same time describing the philosophy behind mindfulness drawing on a wide range of concepts from quantum physics to neuroanatomy. The book is written in clear language with a dollop of humor so that it succeeds in being not only informative, but also entertaining. Anyone who reads Practical Mindfulness will find it an indispensable guide to leading a more mindful life.
John O’Neal, MD
Psychiatrist, Sacramento, CA; co-author of Handbook of Clinical Psychopharmacology for Therapists
Dr. Sazima brings mindfulness down to its nuts and bolts and out of the lofty air where it too often floats out of reach. He speaks from the heart, not just as a physician but as a patient who found benefit through meditative practice and brought those techniques to patients with medical and mental disorders. At times solemn, at times irreverent, but always genuine, he’s put it all here on the page. Read it, but more importantly, do it.