Synopses & Reviews
The 100 simple practices found in Five Good Minutes® are designed to help even the busiest person start the day right. Using just five minutes of mindfulness, relaxation, or imagery techniques during their morning routines, readers can set their intentions and greet the day feeling calm, centered, and energized.
What difference can five minutes make in the crazy, nonstop course of a sixteen-hour day? For people feeling overwhelmed with responsibility, bored with the same tired routine, or frustrated about how to create meaning in their lives, a little time well spent can lead to extraordinary changes. This book shows readers how to dramatically improve their lives in just a few moments each day. The concept is powerfully simple: Readers take the time each morning to be fully present, to set a clear intention for themselves, and to really engage in any of 100 fun and easy-to-follow practices. Soon they will discover that amazing things can happen in just five minutes.
The book provides guided imagery, relaxation, mindfulness, and meditation practices-fun activities that relieve stress and create meaning and purpose in the reader's day. These practices help readers feel good, get motivated, and become inspired to change their lives for the better. Over time, these activities become guideposts readers will return to throughout the day, providing energy and inspiration when they need them most. In other words, the time readers of this book take for themselves in the morning might just be the five good minutes that change their lives.
Five Good Minutes is a trademark of New Harbinger Publications, Inc.
“If you have this book in your hands you are about to make an exponential leap forward in your own personal evolution. Altman's compassionate, sturdy voice gently guides you through seemingly disparate pieces of your internal landscape back to your center, from which self-reliance, self-worth, empathy, and a renewed sense of your innate natural joy can abound. This is a calming and inspirational manual for restructuring any faltering emotional system; an exploration of this book may result in effervescent joy and unbridled contentment.”
—Christopher Kennedy Lawford, goodwill ambassador to the United Nations, CEO of Recover to Live and Global Recovery Initiative, global speaker on recovery, and best-selling author of Moments of Clarity and Symptoms of Withdrawal
“The most important discovery that human beings can make is the discovery that they can change their state of mind from negative to positive. We do not have to be victims of our minds and its moods. In this book Donald Altman describes eight simple ways (tested and proven by research) that we all can become more joyful and at ease in our lives. It's just what the doctor prescribed—free happiness medicine! Why don't you try it?”
—Jan Chozen Bays, MD, pediatrician and Zen roshi (teacher), and author of Mindful Eating: A Guide to Rediscovering a Healthy and Joyful Relationship with Food and How to Train a Wild Elephant: And Other Adventures in Mindfulness
“The Joy Compass is a refreshingly user-friendly manual that nimbly demonstrates Donald Altman's decades of expert experience teaching practical techniques of applied mindfulness. This potent little book provides extremely timely advice for a stressed-out society!”
—Jeffrey M. Schwartz, MD, coauthor of You Are Not Your Brain
“The Joy Compass presents invaluable insights and exercises for training yourself to be more present, lucid, and filled with joy—even during life's most ordinary moments. It is a must-read for anybody who is serious about developing present-moment awareness, simple happiness, and freedom from anxiety and depression. Use it just like a sailor uses a real compass—as a guide into the calm joy of sunny skies and quiet seas.”
—Tobin Blake, author of Everyday Meditation: 100 Daily Meditations for Health, Stress Relief, and Everyday Joy
“What a refreshing guide to rejuvenation and self-discovery. Donald Altman’s new book, The Joy Compass, provides eight strategies that will open your mind to possibilities you may never have considered. This book is a must-read for all who are seeking mental enrichment in ways that are as fun to read as they are perceptive.”
—John Baldoni, author of Lead with Purpose: Giving Your Organization a Reason to Believe in Itself
“Study after study shows that people who are happy and optimistic are also healthier and live longer—and now Donald Altman has given us a wonderfully practical guide to achieving the very emotions and attitudes that ensure good health. Highly recommended!”
—Bill Gottlieb, CHC, author of Alternative Cures
“Donald Altman’s books are always full of creativity, kindness and wisdom. This former Buddhist monk is a monastery onto himself, growing a virtual sangha of readers around the ancient meme of joy and presence. The Joy Compass is perhaps Altman’s most brilliant metaphor to date. Life is a pursuit of well-being, and learning to pay attention to this body/mind compass of joy within us is the ultimate skill of living. With engineering precision, Altman introduces the know-how of attention-training and intention-training and then walks you through a variety of life-applications. The result? A comprehensive map to well-being, with an effective built-in compass to guide your journey!”
—Pavel Somov, PhD, author of Eating the Moment, The Lotus Effect, and Reinventing the Meal
“Don’t be fooled, The Joy Compass is not the latest ‘feel good’ book—though it certainly will point the way to living a life of mindfulness, purpose and fulfillment. Donald Altman’s ‘compass’ comes from his years of practicing in his own life what he teaches in this book and facilitates for his clients and students. He describes the various paths and practices it takes to live life as a creator, rather than a victim to all the forces in the world that conspire to steer us away from a life of choices and vitality. His simple—yet profound—writing rhythm offers ‘content, practice, and reflection.’ This is the ‘CPR’ our modern life needs for resuscitation!”
—David Emerald, co-founder of the Bainbridge Leadership Center and author of The Power of TED (The Empowerment Dynamic) and co-author of TED for Diabetes: A Health Empowerment Story
"A wonderfully comprehensive book. The authors have made it easy to understand how our minds function and how to make changes so that we can live happier, fuller lives."
—Sharon Salzberg, author of Lovingkindness
"Solidly grounded in the latest neuroscientific research, and supported by a deep understanding of contemplative practice, this book is accessible, compelling, and profound—a crystallization of practical wisdom!"
—Philip David Zelazo, PhD, Nancy M. and John E. Lindahl Professor at the Institute of Child Development, University of Minnesota
"This is simply the best book I have read on why and how we can shape our brains to be peaceful and happy. This is a book that will literally change your brain and your life."
—Jennifer Louden, author of The Woman’s Comfort Book and The Life Organizer
"Buddha’s Brain is a significant contribution to understanding the interface between science and meditation in the path of transformation. Illuminating."
—Joseph Goldstein, author of A Heart Full of Peace and One Dharma
"Buddha’s Brain is compelling, easy to read, and quite educational. The book skillfully answers the central question of each of our lives—how to be happy—by presenting the core precepts of Buddhism integrated with a primer on how our brains function. This book will be helpful to anyone wanting to understand time-tested ways of skillful living backed up by up-to-date science."
—Frederic Luskin, PhD, author of Forgive for Good and director of Stanford Forgiveness Projects
"I wish I had a science teacher like Rick Hanson when I went to school. Buddha’s Brain is at once fun, fascinating, and profound. It not only shows us effective ways to develop real happiness in our lives, but also explains physiologically how and why they work. As he instructs us to do with positive experiences, take in all the good information this book offers and savor it."
—James Baraz, author of Awakening Joy and cofounder of Spirit Rock Meditation Center
"With the mind of a scientist, the perspective of a psychologist, and the wise heart of a parent and devoted meditator, Rick Hanson has created a guide for all of us who want to learn about and apply the scintillating new research that embraces neurology, psychology, and authentic spiritual inquiry. Up-to-date discoveries combined with state-of-the-art practices make this book an engaging read. Buddha’s Brain is at the top of my list!"
—Richard A. Heckler, PhD, assistant professor at John F. Kennedy University in Pleasant Hill, CA
"An illuminating guide to the emerging confluence of cutting-edge neuropsychology and ancient Buddhist wisdom filled with practical suggestions on how to gradually rewire your brain for greater happiness. Lucid, good-humored, and easily accessible."
—John J. Prendergast, PhD, adjunct associate professor of psychology at California Institute of Integral Studies and senior editor of The Sacred Mirror and Listening from the Heart of Silence
"Buddha’s Brain will show you how mental practices, informed by the contemplative traditions, can increase your capacity for experiencing happiness and peace. This book provides a scientific understanding of these methods, and clear guidance for practices that cultivate a wise and free heart."
—Tara Brach, PhD author of Radical Acceptance
Award-winning motivational speaker and workshop leader Donald Altman presents The Joy Compass, a pocket guide to using the events of our daily lives to awaken gratitude, contentment, calm, and well-being in every moment.
What would life be like if we could get beyond the everyday worries, troubles, and stress that keep us from enjoying the joy in every moment? The Joy Compass is the little book that leads readers toward this possibility with tips and strategies for overriding the brain’s natural negativity bias so that they can reset their moods, release their laughter, and fully appreciate happy moments. Readers learn to recognize their negative moods as early as possible and override them to refocus their attention toward the people, events, and thoughts that bring them joy. The eight unique mindfulness strategies in this book help readers position their joy compass toward the present moment and develop the capacity to always have joy within arm’s reach, no matter the situation. The strategies include laughing, expressing gratitude, forgiving others, self-soothing with music, and spending silent time in contemplation or prayer.
Do you long for the ability to live fully in the moment? Do you wish that you could transcend everyday worries, dissolve discontent, and find true happiness? If so, The Joy Compass is your guide.
Packed with tips and strategies for overriding the brains natural negativity bias, this practical pocket guide will teach you to recognize your negative moods as early as possible and refocus your attention toward the people, pleasures, and thoughts that bring you the most joy. Inside, youll find eight unique mindfulness pathways to align your personal happiness compass and keep joy within arms reachno matter the situation. So get ready to reset your moods, release your laughter, and discover meaning and happiness right here, right now.
In Buddha's Brain, a clinical psychologist and a senior neurologist explain how the brain benefits from contemplative practice and show readers how to develop greater happiness, love, and wisdom by drawing from breakthroughs in modern neuroscience.
If you change your brain, you can change your life.
Great teachers like the Buddha, Jesus, Moses, Mohammed, and Gandhi were all born with brains built essentially like anyone elsesand then they changed their brains in ways that changed the world. Science is now revealing how the flow of thoughts actually sculpts the brain, and more and more, we are learning that it's possible to strengthen positive brain states.
By combining breakthroughs in neuroscience with insights from thousands of years of mindfulness practice, you too can use your mind to shape your brain for greater happiness, love, and wisdom. Buddha's Brain draws on the latest research to show how to stimulate your brain for more fulfilling relationships, a deeper spiritual life, and a greater sense of inner confidence and worth. Using guided meditations and mindfulness exercises, you'll learn how to activate the brain states of calm, joy, and compassion instead of worry, sorrow, and anger. Most importantly, you will foster positive psychological growth that will literally change the way you live in your day-to-day life.
This book presents an unprecedented intersection of psychology, neurology, and contemplative practice, and is filled with practical tools and skills that you can use every day to tap the unused potential of your brain and rewire it over time for greater well-being and peace of mind.
One hundred simple, fun practices to focus and inspire your day using mindfulness, meditation, and imagery that anyone can do in just five minutes a day in order to set your intention, get off on the right foot, and enrich your life
About the Author
Donald Altman, M.A., LPC, is a licensed professional counselor, a former Buddhist monk, a two-time EMMY-AWARD winning writer, and a pioneer in the field of Mindful Eating who is credited with writing one of the first books in that field, the highly regarded—Art of the Inner Meal (HarperSanFrancisco). Donald serves on the Board of Directors for the national organization The Center for Mindful Eating, and regularly conducts national trainings and seminars in the area of mindfulness. He has worked as a Senior Mental Health Therapist at the Providence St. Vincent Hospital’s Residential Outpatient General Psychiatric Clinic and Eating Clinic for over three years, as well as co-founding his own clinic, West Linn Counseling. He developed the first-ever mindful eating outpatient program for Providence St. Vincent Hospital. Subsequently, Donald expanded that into a successful 12-Weeks to Mindful Eating Program for other clinics and groups around the country. Donald also teaches extensively, and he is an adjunct professor at Lewis and Clark Graduate School, where he teaches the course, The Contemplative Dimensions in Education and Counseling. Donald also teaches mindfulness interventions for addictions professionals at Portland State University. Donald’s book Living Kindness is presently required reading in a New York City Buddhist Chaplaincy Program and has been used at the United Nations to help teach meditation to diplomats and staff. Donald was the first student at Lewis and Clark Graduate School ever to be asked to give a commencement speech for his class.