Many of us are well acquainted with our "Inner Critic." This is the voice that says not enough, not good enough, or sometimes too much. It's the voice that makes every step we take subject to criticism. The Inner Critic is inner because it knows our history, our feelings, how we tick. This might make the Inner Critic seem invincible, but it is not. In fact, our disparaging mental voices reflect profound sources of suffering. They didn't come out of nowhere and they can be addressed, not with anger or panic but with compassion and deep understanding.
Mark Coleman helps readers understand and address their inner voices. Each chapter offers easily digestible insights into what creates, drives, and disarms the Critic, real people's journeys to inspire and guide, and simple meditations anyone can immediately put into practice to invite, cultivate, and nurture their best, most free, and most fulfilled selves.
About the Author
Mark Coleman, M.A., founder of Awake in the Wild and The Mindfulness Institute, is an internationally recognized mindfulness facilitator who has guided students on five continents to find greater peace and fulfillment through nature-based mindfulness practice and mindfulness retreats. The author of Awake in the Wild, Mark is also a corporate consultant, individual counselor, poet, wilderness guide, and outdoor adventurer.
Mark Coleman has been studying meditation practices since 1981, primarily within the Insight meditation (Buddhist) tradition. He has been teaching meditation retreats since 1997. His teaching is influenced by studies with many great teachers in the Buddhist tradition as well as from Advaita and Tibetan teachers in Asia and the West, and through his teacher training with Jack Kornfield. Mark primarily teaches at Spirit Rock Meditation Center in California, as well as nationally, in Europe and India.
He leads backpacking retreats, nature-based retreats, and has taught retreats for environmental activists at Vallecitos Mountain Ranch in New Mexico, and at Knoll Farm in Vermont. In the Bay Area, Mark has a counseling practice, where he integrates his Masters in Clinical Psychology and meditative work and works with people how to integrate their mindfulness practice into daily life. He is the author of Awake in the Wild – Mindfulness in Nature as a path of Self-Discovery.
Mark has been an avid hiker, and backpacker for most of his life and spends much of his time in the outdoors. He lives in the woods in Marin County, Northern California. He likes nothing more than wandering in the mountains of the Sierra Nevada.
Mark is also a mindfulness consultant – bringing mindfulness to a variety of corporate settings including companies such as Proctor and Gamble, Gucci, Prana, Dolce Gabbana, Gap, Responsys and others. He leads trainings in mindfulness as well as offering mindfulness based executive coaching – helping professionals integrate a wise mindful awareness into all aspects of life.
This book is a rare combination of practical help, emotional support, compelling personal story, scientific foundations, and spiritual insight. Mark Coleman shows us how to let go of feeling pressured, inadequate, or afraid to express ourselves fully and instead feel strong, confident, and worthy. A beautiful, soulful, enormously useful book. Rick Hanson, PhD, author of Buddha s Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love, and Wisdom What I most love about Make Peace with Your Mind is the range of accessible practices it offers. From his own experience over many years, Mark Coleman has distilled powerful, creative strategies for relating with and transforming your inner critic. It s a wonderful, delightful, and deeply touching book. Sharon Salzberg, author of Lovingkindness and Real Happiness Both insightful and helpful, with gifts of wisdom and many practical tools to work with your own mind and heart. Jack Kornfield, author of A Path with Heart and cofounding teacher at Spirit Rock Meditation Center, Woodacre, California When I first met Mark Coleman at a retreat at the Spirit Rock Meditation Center, I immediately appreciated the clarity he brought to his teachings. This book is written in the same clear voice, providing an easy-to-follow road map to understanding and defeating our inner critic. Troy Aikman, Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback and Fox Sports broadcaster Mark Coleman has written a wonderful and important book. If we can make friends with ourselves we activate the place inside that has always truly wanted our well-being. Transforming the mind from inner critic to best friend is the key to a more fulfilling life. Make Peace with Your Mind is the perfect guidebook to help us do just that. An excellent offering! James Baraz, coauthor of Awakening Joy: 10 Steps to Happiness and cofounding teacher at Spirit Rock Meditation Center, Woodacre, California Mark Coleman s Make Peace with Your Mind is a great read for all those looking to mindfulness to help them live their best life. Sometimes when life speeds up, it is best to take a few moments to slow down! The benefits of these practices are real and wide-ranging, and it is never too late to start. Congressman Tim Ryan Most of us wait for some champion to show up in our life who supports our dreams, calms our fears, and provides a vision for our future. Mark Coleman reminds us we can be our own champion by building a healthier relationship with our judgmental mind with clear and practical steps. This book can change your life. Chip Conley, New York Timesbestselling author of Emotional Equations and Head of Global Hospitality and Strategy at Airbnb Of the many recent books on mindfulness, some have discussed the practice as a tool in one s life or career, but Coleman focuses squarely on the goal of achieving inner peace and practicing compassion toward oneself and others. For self-improvement enthusiasts searching for ways to calm a stressed mind, this book is sure to help. Publishers Weekly In his new book, Make Peace with Your Mind, Mark Coleman shares his own deep understanding of the often pervasive inner critic, and he offers many tools and methods for freeing ourselves from this common habit of mind. His clear style and compassionate wisdom combine to make this book a valuable support on our journey to freedom. Joseph Goldstein, author of Mindfulness: A Practical Guide to Awakening In this well-written book, Mark Coleman presents his personal reflections on how to free yourself from harsh self-criticism, based on his experience as a meditation teacher, coach, and therapist. With pragmatic exercises designed to help you better understand your own inner critic, this is a truly worthwhile read. Kristin Neff, associate professor at UT Austin and author of Self-Compassion Mark Coleman has written a wonderfully original book, addressing the inner critic that keeps us from our most creative work. He understands that it is often buried deep, and he gives us a wide range of excavation tools, all of which are kind and helpful. Useful for anyone, I will use it especially with college students and young artists and professionals, whose external lives are full of judgments, as well as activists, who feel they can never do enough. This book is a great gift. Mirabai Bush, senior fellow at the Center for Contemplative Mind in Society, author of Contemplative Practices for Higher Education, and coauthor (with Ram Dass) of Compassion in Action A beautiful guide to liberating our minds from endless cycles of self-criticism and creating the inner peace that leads to an exemplary life. Stephen Dinan, bestselling author of Sacred America, Sacred World and CEO of the Shift Network In clear and powerful and terms, Mark Coleman offers readers highly practical tools to cultivate lasting calm, contentment, and happiness in any life circumstance. The tools outlined in this book will help readers confront one of the most persistent sources of difficulty anyone may encounter: one s own negative mind states. Make Peace with Your Mind is a uniquely transformational work offered to us by one of the world s preeminent mindfulness and meditation teachers. It is a must-read for anyone interested in meaningful personal growth and fulfillment. Rich Fernandez, PhD, cofounder of Wisdom Labs As we now know, the world inside and the world outside are not so different and the sneakily destructive inner critic can make a mess of self, other, and the whole world. In Make Peace with Your Mind, therapist, consultant, and Buddhist teacher Mark Coleman does as good a job as I have seen of explaining, deconstructing, and working with the inner critic, until she or he becomes an ally. The book includes many useful exercises for putting its important message into practice: that you need not go on with this misery any longer. Norman Fischer, Zen priest and author of What Is Zen: Plain Talk for a Beginner s Mind and Experience: Thinking, Writing, Language & Religion Mark Coleman, an experienced therapist and a profound practitioner and teacher of meditation, has crafted an exquisite path toward peace and freedom with one of the most troubling aspects of our humanity: our inner critic. Drawing upon ancient wisdom traditions, contemporary psychological breakthroughs, and many other sources, Mark weaves these wisdom strands together into a fully accessible practical approach, illustrated with many examples and supported with practices that can build insight and competence. A marvelous guidebook brought to life by a warm, compassionate friend. James Flaherty, author of Coaching: Evoking Excellence in Others andfounder of New Ventures West and Integral Leadership Drawing on decades of experience of freeing himself and others from the inner critic, Mark Coleman has written a beautiful, inspiring, and practical book for all who wish to find a way out from under the weight of their inner critic. Filled with wisdom and compassion, this book is a warmhearted guide for applying mindfulness and common sense to alleviate the burden of the inner critic. Gil Fronsdal, guiding teacher at Insight Meditation Center and translator of The Dhammapada The inner critic stops all growth, diminishes our life force, and crushes our soul. With kindness and clarity, Mark Coleman gives us proven practices to tame the critic s wild ways and access the more reliable guidance of true wisdom. Everybody s got an inner critic, so everybody needs a wise book like this one. Frank Ostaseski, author of Five Invitations: Discovering What Death Can Teach about Living Fully In Make Peace with Your Mind, Mark Coleman gently guides us to work with the ubiquitous demon of self-judgment. His kind and clear writing style invites us to see and skillfully relate to this familiar human habit. Through teaching, story, and guided exercises, he inspires us to develop keen and compassionate relationships to the parts of ourselves that often seek to demean or even destroy our self-worth. He offers us the possibility of not only hope but genuine healing. This book on the critic will support anyone who desires stopping the inner war and developing holistic integration with all parts of themselves. Sarah Powers, author of Insight Yoga Make Peace with Your Mind is a beautiful book that can help free you from the limited definitions of self-loathing and pain. I have known Mark Coleman for many years, and he is humble and wise and lives with an open heart one who truly walks his talk. Mark s guidance is both wise and compassionate to support deep healing. Bob Stahl, PhD, coauthor of A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook and MBSR Everyday Through Mark Coleman s decades of experience in mindfulness practices, he s unearthed tools that can help us with our inner critic the voice that whispers to us and keeps us lost in self-doubt and old thought patterns. This book is a breath of fresh air, a path out of these cycles, and a way to help liberate us from our suffering in self-doubt. Janet Stone, founder of Janet Stone Yoga This immensely practical book by meditation teacher and therapist Mark Coleman is a thorough and compassionate guide to working with the often relentless inner critic. Filled with stories from his own experience and the hundreds of people he has worked with over three decades, Mark brings wisdom, humor, kindness, and a vast repertoire of exercises that can change your life now! Diana Winston, director of Mindfulness Education at UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center and author of Fully Present: The Science, Art, and Practice of Mindfulness"