When we break free from the habits that limit us, a new world of possibilities opens up. In Let Go, Martine Batchelor leads the way there.
Negative patterns of mind may manifest as fear, avoidance, depression, addiction, judgment of self or other, and any of a host of other physical, mental, or psychological forms. Let Go aims at understanding what really lies at the root of these behaviors so we can reclaim control. Each chapter concludes with an exercise or guided meditation as a tool for the reader to work with negative habits in new and creative ways. You don't have to be a Buddhist for them to work. You just need to want to move on.
Helpful exercises and guided meditations - designed to build understanding of our negative habits, as well as the confidence and skill needed to instead embrace our greatest qualities - appear throughout the book.
Batchelor also looks at Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) for depression, Dr. Jeffrey Schwartz's use of meditation to deal with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD), successful combinations of meditation and Twelve-Step programs, and offers her own innovations.
"In Let Go Batchelor's kind and sympathetic voice leads us towards realizing our potential for a creative, wise and compassionate life. The list of areas she touches on includes: the basis of our mental habits, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy for Depression, the inner language we use that holds our habits in place, the Ten Perfections of Buddhism, love and relationships, compassion and ethics, and finally the Ten Ox-herding pictures of Zen Buddhism. Amazingly, these diverse areas are all illuminated in a meaningful way. [ . . . ] Recommended for anyone starting out who is tempted by the notion that meditation practice has direct relevance to our lives, and that creativity, ease and compassion are within our capacity to realize."
– WildMind Buddhist Meditation blog
"Boredom, loneliness, romantic love, replacing one addiction with another--and even stomach pains--are all explained, along with their remedies, in this delightful book. I particularly liked the exercises at the end of chapters. There really are ways of becoming aware of our habits--and just try the 'listening mediation' advice here. Martine Batchelor is so sensible and kind, and makes it seem eminently achiveable that we can break free. It's a marvelous guide to a habit-free life for Buddhists and non-Buddhists alike, so if you are looking for the perfect gift for a friend in need, this is it."
"Martine Batchelor is a compassionate and gentle guide, leading us through the challenging terrain of our own habitual patterns. She makes us feel it is possible to change, and in this book provides the tools and encouragement we need to actually do it."
– Sharon Salzberg, author of Lovingkindness
"This is a marvelous work: warm, wise, personal, original and eminently practical. I will offer it eagerly to friends and patients alike. Who could not use help breaking free of habits and addiction?"
– Mark Epstein, M.D., author of Thoughts without a Thinker and Going to Pieces without Falling Apart
"Martine's guidance is kind, direct, utterly sensible, completely persuasive, and calming. And all of these qualities inspire faith and dedication, too, which can be so helpful to anyone who feels caught in the grip of suffering."
– Sylvia Boorstein, author of It's Easier Than You Think