The Mindfulness Workbook for Self-Love by Joel Black, LCSW, helps readers to use mindfulness to be more self-compassionate and promote greater well-being. The first part of the book looks at what mindfulness and self-love are and how they relate to one another, while the second part focuses on how to practice them. The book is influenced by what was helpful for the author in his own addiction recovery.
The “how” part of the book is organized around the principles of mindfulness identified by Wherever You Go, There You Are author Jon Kabat-Zinn: beginner’s mind, non-judging, acceptance, patience, trust, non-striving, and letting go.
This book is very much a fill-things-in workbook rather than a book that involves a lot of reading time. The text is concise and easy to read, and the focus is really on self-reflection as you work through the exercises. Meditation makes an appearance but isn’t the focus, and “you are not required to become a monk who sits on the side of a mountain meditating for four hours straight.”
Some of the exercises have a CBT influence, like reframing self-critical thoughts and shoulds, but the approach is more self-compassion-oriented than CBT change-your-thoughts-this-way-oriented. A lot of the book is about helping you look at things in a new, kinder way. You’re not going to come out on the other side thinking you’re the best thing since sliced bread; the book is much more grounded in reality than that, but hopefully, it will help you to feel better able to accept yourself and not latch onto self-judgments so tightly.
The book is short; the epub version I had was only 107 pages. The paperback version is longer because of illustrations, and looking at the preview on Amazon, it’s awfully pretty. I think it can be a helpful tool for reflection in a journey towards greater self-acceptance.
The Mindfulness Workbook for Self-Love is available on Amazon (affiliate link).
I received a reviewer copy from the publisher through Netgalley.
You can find my other reviews on the MH@H book review index or on Goodreads.
20 thoughts on “Book Review: Mindfulness Workbook for Self-Love”
I appreciate the realism you described re: this book – the “you’re not going to think of yourself as the best thing since sliced bread (Side note: I don’t think sliced sandwich bread is that great or important – why does everyone always use that as the bar?), but you will learn to think about yourself in a kinder way” idea.
But, and this sounds stupid to say, I feel like I don’t fully understand what mindfulness is. Like if you asked me to define it and use it in a sentence, I would fail this question on the vocabulary quiz.
I think mindfulness is about noticing what’s happening right here right now rather than letting our heads drag us into the past or future.
I’m like JYP – I don’t get what mindfulness is – I certainly don’t know how one would learn it or practice it. The definitions/explanations don’t make sense to me – one pays attention to NOW when doing so is required but if one has some down time, having one’s mind wander around is so much more useful, practical, creative and fun.
RE: Book reviews in general. A friend of mine recently published a 52-week Grief Journal (https://www.amazon.com/52-Week-Grief-Journal-Reflections-Navigating/dp/1638780919) and offered me a pre-publication copy to read and review but I am crap at book reviews and I don’t relate to this form of – whatever it is – I had meant to ask you if I could forward your info to her so she could offer you a copy to review. I never did (obviously). I like your book reviews so much, you’re so good at it.
Thanks! And sure, I can review your friend’s book.
I used to dislike workbooks that made you do stuff, but I was too lazy & reluctant to put the work in 😂 The thing is, if you’re in need of change of some kind then you likely need to do the work. These sorts of workbooks guide you and structure the activities so you can work through things more easily, which can be great if they’re well done. Not too patronising, not too wishy-washy.
I don’t feel CBT is all that applicable to me these days so I’m glad the focus is tipping a little more towards the compassionate angle and not overdoing the thought-restructuring. I like the idea of the pretty illustrations! Fab write up as always. I’ll have a looksee. xx
Yeah, CBT doesn’t do so well when reality is simply shit.
If the purchase is made through the affiliate link on your site, do you receive some sort of credit? (I would hope that you do.)
It definitely sounds like a title that I need to purchase. 😏
Yeah, I would get a small commission. 😊
Very nice! Will do! 😉
I absolutely love the cover design on this. It would definitely draw me in before I even know what it’s about. Which is a good thing because it sounds like a helpful workbook.
The cover definitely caught my eye when I was on NetGalley looking for books to review.
I like the new profile pic!
Thanks Ashley 😊
A beautiful post thank you so much
Thank you so much for recommending this book
Great review! another book I think I’d enjoy!
It sounds lovely. I’m working on and off on “anxiety and depression for dummies” it’s pretty practical, full of tests and guides. It’s not meant to be read from page to page.
I haven’t read any of the mental health-related for dummies books. Actually, I don’t think I’ve read any of the for dummies books at all.