Thursday, June 07, 2012

Search Inside Yourself

my new meditation corner and new book

practice guides

lots of red underlining

the elusive buddha joins the meditation

These are days that have me thinking of relationships and life purpose and compassion. Surprisingly, and not, a book arrived in the mail that speaks to all of those considerations and more. Written by a Google engineer who found his life's goal in the pursuit of making the benefits of meditation accessible to humanity, the book is filled to brimming with insight and practical steps to increase inner happiness. And thereby effect world peace.

In attempting to highlight the important passages in the book worth remembering, I find my red pen is practically running out of ink. Inside the pages are huge "aha!" moments which all rest on the foundation of mindful meditation. From page 230~ "Meditation, at its simplest, is the training of attention. With enough meditative training...3 wonderful qualities of mind naturally emerge: calmness, clarity and happiness. Inner happiness is contagious."

Luckily, Chade-Meng Tan uses simple, practical guides to teach us how to meditate easily and peppers the practical with goof-ball humor. He teaches us to improve our relationships, both personal and business, through mindful listening, conversation and attention. He helps align us with self-awareness, self-confidence and empathy using science of the brain and ancient wisdom. He grew his inspiration of training and developing the mind to create happiness and compassion into a full blown course taught at Google University. His book now shares the Google course with the world.

Some of my favorite red underlined insights from Search Inside Yourself include:
  • Just giving each other the gift of total attention for 6 minutes is enough to create a friendship.
  • The only highly sustainable source of self-confidence comes from deep self-knowledge and blatant self-honesty.
  • Optimism is something that can learned. It starts with being realistic and objective.
  • Compassion is the cause for the highest level of happiness ever measured, and it's a necessary condition for the most effective form of leadership known.
  • Compassion requires engagement in real life with real people. 
  • Meditation practices cannot be perfected outside real life.
  • Our brains respond far more strongly to negative experiences than comparable positive ones.
  • For a marriage to succeed, there must be at least 5 times as many positive interactions in the relationship as negative ones. 5:1 ratio.
  • A 3:1 ratio is unreasonable.
  • It's not the stress itself that gets to you; it's the feeling of helplessness in the face of that stress.
  • Goodness is very inspiring, and it inspires in a way that changes people.
So, I've created a dedicated mediation corner in my home to help me achieve my definition of success and sustainable happiness. In that corner you will find candles, a blanket and books. Chade-Meng Tan's  Google-course-turned book, sits at the top of the pile.

Thank you, TLC Book Tours, for recommending this book to me!


  1. I love it when a book inspires me to actually DO something so I'm glad to see that you created your own meditation space after reading this one!

    Thanks for being a part of the tour.

  2. I love how you show you really read and used the book. This is how a book of such depth is meant to be used.

    Yes optimism is a process of RE-learning. We get dragged down by others drama and issues and often need a nudge on the optimistic scale.

    Now that you have a meditation corner and the book is on top you'll need some additional support tools and love for you to check out our site from some of those very meditative, journey type items.



I always appreciate the time you take to comment on my blog. Thank you for stopping by. Peace from my heart to yours. xo, Graciel