“Mindfulness” and “self-compassion” are now buzzwords for self-improvement. But in fact, a growing body of research shows these practices can lead to real mental health benefits. This research — ongoing, voluminous, and worldwide — clearly shows how and why these two practices work.
One effective way to cultivate mindfulness and self-compassion is through meditation.
For more than 20 years, as a clinical psychologist, research scientist, and educator, I taught meditation to students and clinical patients, and took a deep dive into the research literature. My recent book, The Self-Talk Workout: Six Science-Backed Strategies to Dissolve Self-Criticism and Transform the Voice in Your Head, highlights much of that research.
Defining mindfulness and self-compassion
Mindfulness means purposefully paying attention to the present moment with an