Book on Mindfulness open on a deck by a river

The Best Mindfulness Book to Read in 2023

The list of bestselling mindfulness books has exploded in recent times. Trying to find the best mindfulness book can be a challenge when so many promises life-changing practices. So which is the best book to read?

In this article, I’ll be sharing a list of the best mindfulness books recommended both old and new. Whether you are a beginner looking to explore the miracle of mindfulness, or a seasoned expert looking for a new perspective on practicing mindfulness – this list is for you, especially if you are interested in starting or improving your own mindfulness practice.

Best Overall

best mindfulness books - the miracle of mindfulness

The Miracle of Mindfulness
Thich Nhat Hanh

2nd Best

best mindfulness books - Full catastrophe living

Full Catastrophe Living
Jon Kabat-Zinn

3rd Best

best mindfulness books - the power of now

The Power of Now
Eckhart Tolle

How I’ve Selected the Best Books

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I’ve looked for an inclusive range for all levels of mindfulness meditation experience. So, the books I’ve picked up contain accurate information about mindfulness and practical guidance to help you start your own meditation and self-compassion practice.

When selecting the books I’ve made sure they fulfill the following criteria:

  • There has been a continuous sales history (not just a seasonal fashion)
  • The author is experienced in their field
  • It receives good or above-average reviews
  • Accurate information about mindfulness

My Picks of the 15 Best Mindfulness Books

15: 10-Minute Mindfulness

71 Simple Habits for Living in the Present Moment

Authors: S. J. Scott and Barrie Davenport

The first of two books in this list for authors Scott and Davenport, 10-minute mindfulness is a collection of 71 simple habits to follow to be more mindful in everyday life.

The authors bring a down-to-earth approach and acknowledge that in the modern world, it is not possible to be mindful all the time. But as the book soon points out, you don’t have to be mindful every minute of the day. You just have to be mindful for a few moments each day.

Popular Quote: “However, when your body is on autopilot, moving along without conscious direction, your mind is free to do what it wants—and often what it wants is to focus on stressful and negative thoughts.”

14: You Are Not Your Brain

The 4-Step Solution for Changing Bad Habits, Ending Unhealthy Thinking, and Taking Control of Your Life

Authors: Jeffrey M. Schwartz and Rebecca Gladding MD

This book has an interesting way of describing our thoughts as deceptive brain messages that breed false thoughts and create stress.

The authors continue to show four steps of relabel, reframe, refocus, and revalue to change the way our brains react to these deceptive messages, and break out negative habits. The book shows that by using mindfulness practices, everyone can transform their self for the better.

Popular Quote: “Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”

13: The Little Book of Mindfulness

10 minutes a day to less stress, more peace

Author: Dr. Patrizia Collard

A little book that’s handy to keep in the bag and read on your commute. It contains 10-minute mindfulness exercises that readers will enjoy. The language is simple but powerful in explaining mindfulness. A lot of the focus is on breath awareness to bring awareness to the present moment.

Popular Quote: “Mindfulness is being aware of or bringing attention to this moment in time, deliberately and without judging the experience. So, when we go for a mindful walk we really notice every little detail and all we encounter – trees, cars, flowers growing out of small cracks, or a cat crossing the road – rather than creating to-do lists.”

12: Unf*ck Yourself

Get out of your head and into your life

Author: Gary John Bishop

The popular bestseller with a strong title presents a contemporary approach to self-improvement. Great for beginners with no previous experience in mindfulness.
Using a series of seven assertions Bishop explains that the barriers stopping you from thriving in life are up to you to overcome.

Popular Quote: “You must first accept that while there are things that have happened in your life that you had no say in, you are 100 percent responsible for what you do with your life in the aftermath of those events. Always, every time, no excuses.”

11: Practicing Mindfulness

75 Essential Meditations to Reduce Stress, Improve Mental Health, and Find Peace in the Everyday

Author: Matthew Sockolov

Focused more on practicing mindfulness meditations, this best seller is packed with 75 easy-to-follow mindfulness meditation exercises to feel more present in the moment.

This book doesn’t have as much depth about mindfulness as some of the other books, but its strength lies in offering simple to follow steps to begin meditating for beginners.

Popular Quote: “My first big insight came when I realized that my reactions to these experiences were causing me more pain than the experience itself.”

10: Declutter Your Mind

How to Stop Worrying, Relieve Anxiety, and Eliminate Negative Thinking

Authors: S. J. Scott and Barrie Davenport

The book starts by introducing the four causes of mental clutter:
• Stress
• The Paradox of Choice
• Too Much Stuff
• The Negativity Bias

It then expertly describes several steps and exercises to declutter your mind and focuses on the benefits of mindfulness, such as reduced anxiety, improved relationships, and decreased mental clutter.

Popular Quote: “Your constant inner dialog distracts you from what is happening around you, right here and now. It causes you to miss valuable experiences and sabotages the joy of the present moment.”

9: The Untethered Soul

The Journey Beyond Yourself

Author: Michael A. Singer

Michael A. Singer’s book aims to help the reader explore themselves and understand all the parts that are holding them back from becoming fully conscious and free.

This is a global bestseller that shows that resonates with society globally.

Popular Quote: “True personal growth is about transcending the part of you that is not okay and needs protection.”

8: The Headspace Guide to Meditation and Mindfulness

How Mindfulness Can Change Your Life in Ten Minutes a Day

Author: Andy Puddicombe

The former Buddhist monk, and one of the most recognized voices in meditation, Andy Puddicombe provides an easy-to-understand book on mindfulness.

Written in the down-to-earth language that Headspace is known for, this is an excellent intro to mindfulness and meditation.

Popular Quote: The kind of happiness that I’m talking about is the ability to feel comfortable no matter what emotion arises.”

7: Mindfulness for Beginners

Reclaiming the Present Moment and Your Life

Author: Jon Kabat-Zinn Ph.D.

Jon Kabat-Zinn is the western godfather of mindfulness meditation. Kabat-Zinn is known for being the creator of the Stress Reduction Clinic and the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society at the University of Massachusetts Medical School.

He also created the stress reduction program ‘Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction (MBSR)’ You’ll see his name again on this list – and was one of the teachers that truly helped me to understand mindfulness.
This book is a great introduction to mindfulness and comes with audio of Jon Kabat-Zinn to help you with the practice of meditation.

Popular Quote: “If we are not careful, it is all too easy to fall into becoming more of a human doing than a human being, and forget who is doing all the doing, and why.”

6: Wherever You Go, There You Are

Mindfulness Meditation in Everyday Life

Author: Jon Kabat-Zinn Ph.D.

You might be mistaken in thinking that this is a Jon Kabat-Zinn list, and to be fair, you’ll see him again before the end of the list.

Wherever You Go, There You Are has been a bestseller for decades showing its authority on the subject.

Popular Quote: “If we are not careful, it is all too easy to fall into becoming more of a human doing than a human being, and forget who is doing all the doing, and why.”

5: Mindfulness

An Eight-Week Plan for Finding Peace in a Frantic World

Authors: Mark Williams and Danny Penman.

With a more science-based approach to mindfulness, Williams and Penman introduce Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT), and as the title suggests, provide an 8-week practical guide to how to include mindfulness practice in your daily life.

Popular Quote: We try so hard to be happy that we end up missing the most important parts of our lives and destroying the very peace that we were seeking.

4: 10% Happier

How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help That Actually Works – A True Story

Authors: Dan Harris.

After a nationally televised panic attack, new anchor Dan Harris set about understanding how he got to that infamous moment.

This is a great book written from the side of someone struggling with anxiety. The book explores going from expert to expert from science to spirituality to find how to become “10 % Happier.”

Popular Quote: “We live so much of our lives pushed forward by these “if only” thoughts, and yet the itch remains. The pursuit of happiness becomes the source of our unhappiness.”

Read the full book review HERE

3: The Power of Now

A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment

Authors: Eckhart Tolle.

With over 5 million copies sold, spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle conveys simple wisdom in his best-selling book about freeing yourself of pain and embracing the now.

I first read this back in university as it was suggested by one of my lecturers (perhaps he thought my mind was all over the place).

Popular Quote: “Realize deeply that the present moment is all you ever have. Make the Now the primary focus of your life.”

2: Full Catastrophe Living

How to Cope with Stress, Pain and Illness Using Mindfulness Meditation

Authors: Jon Kabat-Zinn Ph.D.

Kabat-Zinn almost made it to the top slot.

This international bestseller precedes his Mindfulness for Beginners. This is a more detailed introduction to the mindfulness meditation practice that you can return to over and over again.

Popular Quote: “Patience is a form of wisdom. It demonstrates that we understand and accept the fact that sometimes things must unfold in their own time.”

1: The Miracle of Mindfulness

The Classic Guide to Meditation by the World’s Most Revered Master by Thich Nhat Hanh

Authors: Thich Nhat Hanh

This was one of the first books I read that taught me to practice mindfulness and I find myself returning to the pages again and again.

Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh offers little anecdotes and practical exercises as a means to learn the skills of mindfulness techniques.

Written like a journal Thich Nhat Hanh tells stories about how washing the dishes can be mindful.

Popular Quote: “People usually consider walking on water or in thin air a miracle. But I think the real miracle is not to walk either on water or in thin air, but to walk on earth. Every day we are engaged in a miracle that we don’t even recognize: a blue sky, white clouds, green leaves, the black, curious eyes of a child—our own two eyes. All is a miracle.”

Books of Note

There are two books that didn’t make it to the list but were great companions on my commute to and from work. They both use simple language and really inspire you to meditate and give you examples of how to meditate effectively.

What to read next:

The Takeaway

Mindfulness has transformed my life for the better, and each of these books has added a perspective I never saw before in my practice.

Meditation books are a way of becoming familiar with the different mindfulness practices, but nothing beat the practice itself. If you prefer to listen to your books, most books are available as audiobooks, or why not check out the 21 best meditation podcasts here?

Can you recommend any books? Which book best describes the essence of the practice? Let me know in the comments which ones and what you liked about them.

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