Tag Archives: Dan Harris

10% Happier by Dan Harris

Summary
  1. Dan Harris had a very public panic attack on air during an ABC news cast and this led him down a path he never thought he’d go. Harris helps demystify meditation and offers his own advice and steps to take in order to make meditation work for you. As the title suggests, meditation may not change your life, but it may just make you 10% happier.
Key Takeaways
  1. Learned how to realistically incorporate meditation in a “non-guru-like” fashion and this helps quiet one’s “monkey mind,” become responsive instead of reactive and realize that one’s inner voice are simply thoughts and not reality
  2. RAIN – Recognize, Allow, Investigate, Non-Identification
  3. Acceptance is not passivity.
  4. Meditation helps quiet the “surge of habitual impulses” which so many of us simply fall prey to and obey
    1. Meditation can be as simple as sitting with your spine relatively straight in a chair, focusing on your breathing and when your mind wanders (which it inevitably will) simply to forgive yourself and get back to the breathing. Can start with just five minutes and feel the effects
  5. It is perfectly fine to plot and plan, but only up to the point of it being useful
  6. “The real superpower of meditation is not just to manage your ego more mindfully but to see that the ego itself has no actual substance.”
  7. Through meditation, you don’t feel different feelings, you simply learn to detach from them
    1. Detachment allows for space between stimulus and response
  8. When a feeling overcomes you, be aware and notice how it manifests itself (clenched fists, raised eyebrows, shoulder shrugged, etc.)
  9. The pursuit of happiness becomes the source of our unhappiness
  10. In the real world, “hide the zen” or else people will take advantage of you. Can feel the calm inside but don’t need to show others or be too conspicuous with it
  11. Nonattachment to the result, not the process. Be ambitious!
  12. Striving is fine, as long as you realize that the final outcome is ultimately out of your control
  13. Brain is a pleasure seeking machine and through meditation you can teach it that being present feels far better than worrying about the past or the future
  14. Meditation is not about feeling a certain way, it’s about being mindful of what you are feeling
What I got out of it
  1. More than anything, a realistic, practical and helpful book on meditation and how to implement it into your life

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