Jon Kabat-Zinn is known worldwide for his research and contributions to meditation practice and Mindfulness. In fact, regarding the latter, he is considered the driving force in the West and its maximum exponent.

  • If you want to know what Mindfulness is, you can read this article: “What is Mindfulness? The 7 answers to your questions”

Jon Kabat-Zinn phases for reflection

In the following lines you can find a list with the best sentences of Jon Kabat-Zinn .

1. Full attention is a first-person experience, not an experience filtered through the mind of another

Mindfulness makes people connect with themselves and promotes self-knowledge .

2. Consciousness requires only that we pay attention to things and see them as they are. It does not require us to change anything

This practice has the characteristic that it focuses on the acceptance of experience, since what is important is not the events themselves, but how we relate to them.

3. Much of the education system guides students to become better thinkers, but there is almost no attention to our ability to pay attention and cultivate awareness

EQ is often overlooked in schools, something that is detrimental not only to students’ emotional health but also to their performance.

4. Don’t try to expel the thoughts. Give them space, observe them and let them go

Observation and acceptance of experience are two basic principles of the practice of Full Care.

5. In the languages of Asia, the word “mind” and the word “heart” are the same. So if you are not listening to attention in some deep way as heartfulness, you are not really understanding it

Self-pity is also one of the basic principles of Mindfulness , as it improves the relationship with ourselves.

6. Compassion and kindness to oneself are intrinsically intertwined in the practice of Mindfulness. One could think of such wise and loving attention

One must love oneself for the sake of greater mental well-being.

7. Attention is about love and the love life. When you cultivate love, it gives you clarity and compassion for life and your actions will happen accordingly

When you love yourself and treat yourself with respect, life has another color, a more positive one.

8. It takes a certain way of digging, a certain kind of internal archaeology, to come to discover our totality, even though it is very well covered under layers of opinions, of things we like and dislike, and by the dense fog of unconscious and automatic thoughts and habits, not to mention pain

Automatic thoughts are intrusive thoughts that we must observe and let go.

9. Everything our body normally does is wonderful and extraordinary, although it rarely occurs to us to think of it this way

We tend to be very hard on ourselves, and we rarely reward ourselves for the things we do well.

10. Even before smart phones and the Internet, we had many ways to distract ourselves. That’s compounded by a factor of billions

New technologies make our mind jump from one place to another in a matter of seconds.

11. My father was a first-rate scientist and my mother was a prolific painter. I realized that my parents had completely different ways of knowing and understanding the world, and that they referred to it differently

The author explains what his parents were like, and refers to how each person has a different view of the world.

12. My father approached things through scientific research and exploration, while my mother experienced things through her emotions and senses

His mother was more likely to experiment with emotions, she was emotionally more intelligent.

13. Mindfulness teaches us how to use the wisdom of the body and mind to cope with stress, pain and illness

Thanks to Mindfulness we can improve the connection between our body and our mind.

14. When you connect with something, this connection immediately gives you a meaning to live

The experience that Mindfulness provides us improves the way we relate to the world .

15. Full attention does not mean stumbling thoughts or building a wall around us so that they do not disturb our mind

It is not a matter of silencing the mind so as not to hear anything, but of voluntarily focusing attention and knowing and accepting what we think and feel

16. Ironically, although we all “have” minds, it seems that we need to “re-mind” from time to time about who we are

Although every human being has a mind, the use to which each one puts it is different.

17. There are people who show some resistance to the idea of setting aside time for themselves. The puritanical ethic has left us with a legacy of guilt when we do something just for ourselves

It is not often that we live in the here and now , we have not been educated for that.

18. It’s impossible to become someone else. Our only hope is to be ourselves more fully

Will is an important part of the Mindfulness practice. This practice is easy but not simple.

19. Mindfulness improves self-confidence and helps to enjoy the fullness of the experience

The benefits of the practice of Full Care for people’s health have been demonstrated in a multitude of research.

20. When you pay attention to boredom it becomes incredibly interesting

Instead of letting the mind ruminate, it is much more satisfying to pay attention to the whole experience .

21. To be patient simply consists of being totally open to each moment, accepting it in its fullness and knowing that, just like the butterfly, things are discovered when they are touched

The author makes a simile between Mindfulness and the life of a butterfly.

22. Mindfulness is not simply a method of being happier, but a philosophy of life

It’s much more rewarding to live in mindfulness mode than to practice it from time to time.

23. We must educate young people in the practice of Mindfulness if we want them to grow up happier

As a philosophy, this practice should be taught to children already at an early age . One of Jon Kabat-Zinn’s phrases about the educational model

24. Only when the mind is open and receptive can learning, vision and change occur

The will to change is the principle before the task of entering into this oriental practice.

25. Breathing is fundamental to all aspects of meditation training. It is a wonderful place to focus on training the mind to be calm and focused

Meditation and Mindfulness are closely related; however, they are not exactly the same.

26. This habit of categorizing and judging our experience leads to mechanical reactions that we are not even aware of and that often have no objective basis at all

Stopping in the here and now with an observation mentality helps us to be aware of how we think.

27. Sometimes turning off the sound of the TV can allow you to actually watch the game and take it in a totally different and more direct way

Usually, people don’t realize that we live constantly on autopilot.

28. If we are to find a more effective way of managing the stress in our lives, the first thing we will need is to become aware of these automatic judgments in order to see through our prejudices and fears and free ourselves from their tyranny

Stress can be reduced if we adopt a different mentality from the one we usually employ in the western world.

29. If Mindfulness is important to you, then any time is an opportunity to practice it

When Mindfulness is a passion, the practice is effortless.

30. You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to surf

It is not good to force yourself to stop thoughts or emotions, it is better to accept them.