Psychologist, Author, Teacher of Mindfulness and Compassion

Sitting Together: Essential Skills for Mindfulness-Based Psychotherapy

Sitting Together: Essential Skills for Mindfulness-Based Psychotherapy


This practical guide helps therapists from virtually any specialty or theoretical orientation choose and adapt mindfulness practices most likely to be effective with particular patients, while avoiding those that are contraindicated. The authors provide a wide range of meditations that build the core skills of focused attention, mindfulness, and compassionate acceptance. Vivid clinical examples show how to weave the practices into therapy, tailor them to each patient's needs, and overcome obstacles. Therapists also learn how developing their own mindfulness practice can enhance therapeutic relationships and personal well-being. The Appendix offers recommendations for working with specific clinical problems. Free audio downloads (narrated by the authors) and accompanying patient handouts for selected meditations from the book are available.

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"The authors have both a firm grasp on mindfulness and important insight into the therapeutic process. Their book is full of clinical examples as well as detailed directions on how to use mindfulness in different therapeutic situations with different kinds of patients. If you are a therapist interested in incorporating mindfulness into your own life or into the work you do with patients, I highly recommend this thorough, thoughtful book."
Greater Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life

"The authors…all psychotherapists and longtime mediators, manage to be sensible and inspirational at the same time. It's like levitating by sitting still. There are illustrations of several casesand one breathtaking example of a long and complex trauma treatment….[E]ach stage of treatment was personalized with a theoretical frame and with exercises. Free downloads and handouts are available at the end of Sitting Together, heartfelt signs of a desire to help."
Harvard Medicine Magazine

"An excellent guide, filled with skillful means and wise understanding."
—Jack Kornfield, PhD, author of A Path with Heart

"Truly impressive—a much-needed exploration of the multifaceted role that mindfulness meditation can play in optimizing psychotherapeutic practice. The book features a generous selection of practices, including rationales, handouts, and audio downloads. It provides both novices and experts with surefooted guidance for increasing mindful awareness in ways that are best suited to clients' needs."
—Zindel V. Segal, PhD, Distinguished Professor of Psychology in Mood Disorders, University of Toronto—Scarborough, Canada

"This comprehensive and beautifully organized book reveals the clinical expertise and human wisdom of its authors. With its treasure trove of meditations, case studies, and teachings, Sitting Together will be a cherished book for any therapist seeking to bring mindfulness alive in therapeutic work."
—Tara Brach, PhD, author of Radical Acceptance and True Refuge

"A useful technical guide for therapists interested in incorporating the skills of mindfulness meditation into their practice. The book is filled with practical meditation exercises, explained in a clear and engaging style. But these exercises are not for the patient only, as is usual in treatment manuals; rather, they are offered equally to the therapist. Sitting Together invites the therapist to develop, through mindfulness, those qualities common to all gifted practitioners: accurate attention, caring without judgment, compassion, and wisdom."
—Judith Lewis Herman, MD, Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School

"The authors combine clinical expertise and deep personal experience with mindfulness to offer a very effective book that is well referenced and full of practical case examples. This clearly written, genuinely profound and heartfelt book will serve all therapists interested in the power of mindful presence for themselves as well as their clients. It will also be useful as a seminar text or training manual."
—Rick Hanson, PhD, author of Hardwiring Happiness

"Sitting Together is an extraordinary achievement and an outstanding resource for introducing mindfulness into psychotherapy. The exercises are simple, powerful, and supported by clinical research. Most important, they help therapists and clients cultivate compassion for self and others. Practicing the skills in this book encourages the wise mind and good heart of both therapist and client to emerge. Destined to become a classic in the field."
—Joan Borysenko, PhD, author of Minding the Body, Mending the Mind

"I have been teaching a graduate-level course in mindfulness-based interventions for more than a decade, and have long sought a book that would help students broaden and deepen the skills they were learning. This is the text I have been looking for. It provides an in-depth yet accessible introduction to integrating mindfulness interventions into individual psychotherapy. While an excellent introduction to the topic, it also provides plenty of food for thought for experienced practitioners. I recommend this text for advanced undergraduate and graduate courses in counseling and psychotherapy, as well as for practicing professionals interested in mindfulness-based interventions."
—James B. Lane, PhD, School of Professional Psychology, College of Health Professions, Pacific University