How do we change? In this pioneering talk, Dr. Shauna Shapiro draws on modern neuroscience and ancient wisdom to demonstrate how mindfulness can help us make positive changes in our brains and our lives.
The Power of Mindfulness: What You Practice Grows Stronger
SHAUNA SHAPIRO, PhD, is a professor at Santa Clara University, a clinical psychologist, and an internationally recognized expert in mindfulness. Dr. Shapiro is the recipient of the American Council of Learned Societies teaching award, acknowledging her outstanding contributions to education; and is a fellow of the Mind and Life Institute co-founded by the Dalai Lama. Dr. Shapiro lectures and leads mindfulness programs internationally, serves on the Advisory Board of Axialent a leader on Conscious Business, and has brought mindfulness to pioneering companies including Cisco Systems and Google. She has published over 150 articles and book chapters and is co-author of The Art and Science of Mindfulness and Mindful Discipline: A loving approach to raising an emotionally intelligent child. drshaunashapiro.com
This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community.
Good Morning, I Love You
Shauna Shapiro is delighted to share with you my new book, Good Morning, I Love You: Mindfulness and Self-Compassion Practices to Rewire Your Brain for Calm, Clarity, and Joy.
The roots of this book began when I was 17 and had spinal fusion surgery. This seemingly tragic event propelled me into a lifelong journey into mindfulness. I studied at monasteries in Thailand and Nepal, completed a PhD program, and became a professor researching the effects of mindfulness using rigorous scientific methodology.
One of my biggest discoveries about mindfulness was that kindness is the secret sauce. Mindfulness is not just about paying attention, it is about how we pay attention, with an attitude of kindness. If we pay attention in a critical, judgmental way, we actually shut down the learning centers of the brain and rob ourselves of the resources we need to change. Learning to welcome all of our experience with kindness turns on the learning centers of the brain and gives us the power to face our suffering and transform our lives.
In Good Morning, I Love You, you’ll learn practices of mindfulness and self-compassion that science has proven can rewire your brain and bring about lasting change. Through stories, research, and real-world applications, it provides a roadmap to cultivate your deepest wisdom, clarity, and joy. I invite you to try the practice below from my book.
Compassionate Letter to Myself
- To begin practicing self-compassion, it can be helpful to write a letter to yourself about a current struggle in your life, or an area where you feel inadequate and want to motivate yourself to change.
- In this letter, write as if you were talking to a dear friend facing the same concerns as you. How might you respond to your friend? What might you say? How might you support her? Feel the genuine care you have for your friend, and see if you can feel this same care for yourself. Even if you can only let in five percent more kindness toward yourself, it is a start. The key is to begin the shift from being your inner enemy to your inner ally.
- When you are finished, place the letter in an envelope and mail it to yourself. When you find it in the mail, see if you can receive your own wisdom and kindness, allowing it to both soothe and strengthen you.
Good Morning, I Love You is the fruition of decades of personal meditation practice and rigorous scientific study. These teachings and practices have transformed thousands of lives, including my own. I know they can transform yours.
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