Wherever You Go, There You Are Book Summary - Wherever You Go, There You Are Book explained in key points
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Wherever You Go, There You Are summary

Jon Kabat-Zinn

Mindfulness Meditation In Everyday Life

4.4 (538 ratings)
26 mins

Brief summary

Wherever You Go, There You Are by Jon Kabat-Zinn is a mindfulness guide that teaches how to live in the present moment, be attentive and compassionate in life through practicing meditation, and develop a more profound sense of peace and self-awareness.

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    Wherever You Go, There You Are
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    Sit down comfortably and close your eyes. Think about your mind as the surface of an ocean. It’s vast and beautiful, and there are always waves on the water—some are small, some are big. Sometimes, those waves get churned up by the winds of stress and anxiety, and become very turbulent. Observe these waves. Look at them with curiosity while taking a deep breath. Watch how the ocean’s surface slowly calms down again, and in your own time, open your eyes.

    Many people think that mindfulness aims at eradicating the waves on our mind’s surface in order to create calm and tranquility, but this belief couldn’t be further from the truth. All of us face obstacles in our lives over which we have little or no control – but that doesn’t mean we have to see ourselves as victims to the winds that agitate the big waves within our mind. Mindfulness meditation can help us find shelter and learn how to surf these waves.

    Okay, all of this was a bit abstract and symbolic. Let’s explore the concept of mindfulness in more detail before we’re doing another practice together.

    An ancient Buddhist practice, mindfulness is about overriding our automatic approach to life. We often do things unconsciously, without being fully present in the moment. Mindfulness can teach us how to pay attention to what’s happening right now, purposefully and non-judgmentally. 

    The cultivation of mindfulness and meditation are often confused with things like relaxation, stress relief, or self-development. However, mindfulness isn’t about aiming for a particular feeling, nor is it about getting somewhere or becoming a particular kind of person. It’s about emptying the mind, becoming still, and allowing ourselves to realize who and where we already are.

    You can see it as a tool that helps us reunite with aspects of ourselves that we often overlook. When I started meditating, it opened up entirely new ways of existing, both in my own skin and in this world. It helped me realize the richness and possibility of the present moment, and led me to richer and deeper experiences of joy and happiness, but also difficult emotions like anger and fear. 

    Let’s take a closer look at how mindfulness and meditation can help you deal with such difficult emotions.

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    What is Wherever You Go, There You Are about?

    Wherever You Go, There You Are (1994) explains how to fully enjoy the present moment without worrying about the past or the future. By providing step-by-step meditation practices, both formal and informal, that can easily be incorporated into everyday life, Kabat-Zinn steers us toward the peace and tranquility that we’re yearning for.

    Wherever You Go, There You Are Review

    Wherever You Go, There You Are (1994) is a book that explores the profound practice of mindfulness meditation and its impact on our daily lives. Here's why this book is worth reading:

    • It offers a practical approach to mindfulness that can be easily integrated into our busy lives, allowing us to find peace and presence in any moment.
    • With compelling anecdotes and examples, it illustrates the transformative power of mindfulness, making it relatable and inspiring.
    • The book encourages self-reflection and deepens our understanding of the present moment, leading to a greater sense of calm, clarity, and well-being.

    Who should read Wherever You Go, There You Are?

    • Those who want to be fully present
    • People who want to learn how to meditate
    • Meditators hoping to expand and deepen their practice

    About the Author

    Jon Kabat-Zinn is the founding director of both the Stress Reduction Clinic and, at the University of Massachusetts, the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care and Society. He’s studied under renowned Buddhist teachers (Thich Nhat Hanh among them) and leads workshops on stress reduction and mindfulness. He’s the author of multiple books, including Full Catastrophe Living and Everyday Blessings.

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    Wherever You Go, There You Are FAQs 

    What is the main message of Wherever You Go, There You Are?

    The main message of Wherever You Go, There You Are is to find peace and happiness in the present moment through mindfulness.

    How long does it take to read Wherever You Go, There You Are?

    The reading time for Wherever You Go, There You Are varies. However, you can read the Blinkist summary in just a few minutes.

    Is Wherever You Go, There You Are a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Wherever You Go, There You Are is worth reading for its practical guidance and insights on mindfulness. It can help you cultivate a more present and fulfilling life.

    Who is the author of Wherever You Go, There You Are?

    The author of Wherever You Go, There You Are is Jon Kabat-Zinn.

    What to read after Wherever You Go, There You Are?

    If you're wondering what to read next after Wherever You Go, There You Are, here are some recommendations we suggest:
    • Full Catastrophe Living by Jon Kabat-Zinn
    • Radical Acceptance by Tara Brach
    • The Miracle of Mindfulness by Thich Nhat Hanh
    • Mindfulness by Joseph Goldstein
    • Unplug by Suze Yalof Schwartz
    • The Mindful Athlete by George Mumford
    • Aware by Daniel J. Siegel
    • Fully Present by Susan L. Smalley and Diana Winston
    • Mindfulness by Mark Williams and Danny Penman
    • Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill