49 Profound Mindfulness Quotes to Inspire Your Practice

mindfulness quotesIf you have heard anything about positive psychology, you have caught wind of the word “mindfulness.”

Critical for mental wellness, mindfulness is being fully present and nonjudgmentally aware of the current moment. Mindfulness has countless positive benefits on mental health, including decreased stress, anxiety, and depression levels and improved sleep, relationships, and job performance.

Whether these advantages don’t convince you, or you just want to learn more about mindfulness, we have created a comprehensive list of procured mindfulness quotes from an in-depth review of the literature and research studies. We even included a few gems from the Buddha himself!

Whether you want to pursue a mindfulness routine or assist clients in beginning this healthful practice, these mindfulness quotes will inspire you.

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What Is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is a form of meditative practice that elevates present-moment awareness (Ludwig & Kabat-Zinn, 2008).

The mental and physical benefits of this type of exercise are well documented within the literature and practiced worldwide. The following mindfulness quotes will help to solidify your understanding of mindfulness.

Mindfulness Quotes

One specific aspect of mindfulness is awareness.

Reb at el., 2015, p. 111

Healing Power

To cultivate the healing power of mindfulness requires much more than mechanically following a recipe or a set of instructions.

Kabat-Zinn, 2005, p. 31

Personal Transformation of Mindfulness

Mindfulness is a deceptively simple way of relating to all experience that can reduce suffering and set the stage for positive personal transformation.

Siegel et al., 2009, p. 17

Mindfulness Experience

We can talk about mindfulness or write at length about it, but to truly understand mindfulness, we have to experience it directly.

Siegel et al., 2009, p. 17

Mindfulness Quotes

As we mentioned, the benefits of mindfulness are plentiful. Mindfulness can promote whole-person health by positively affecting a person’s mind, body, and behavior (Greeson, 2009). The following quotes will help shed light on mindfulness’s benefits.

Emotional Reactivity

Most of the time our perception is limited by our attention span; fragmented by continuous distractions; distorted by our biases, assumptions, and expectations; and regularly hijacked by our emotional reactivity.

Hyland et al., 2015, p. 578

Percieve Clearly

Mindfulness is the capacity to perceive our world clearly, without adulteration or manipulation.

Hyland et al., 2015, p. 578

Human Capacity

We are all mindful to one degree or another, moment by moment. It is an inherent human capacity.

Kabat-Zinn, 2003, pp. 145–146

The mind must be open

It is only when the mind is open and receptive that learning and seeing and change can occur.

Kabat-Zinn, 2005, p. 31

Present moment experience

The richness of present-moment experience is the richness of life itself. Too often we let our thinking and our beliefs about what we ‘know’ prevent us from seeing things as they really are.

Kabat-Zinn, 2005, p. 35

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Mindful Thoughts

Mindfulness is a personal journey. Although our process in this practice may vary, we must remember to keep our thoughts of awareness nonjudgmental, nonconceptual, and accepting (Frewen et al., 2008).

To help prepare you for mindfulness practice, you may wish to review the following mindfulness quotes.

Insight meditation

Mindfulness is often spoken of synonymously as ‘insight’ meditation, which means a deep, penetrative non-conceptual seeing into the nature of mind and world.

Kabat-Zinn, 2003, p. 146

Spirit of inquire

This seeing requires a spirit of perpetual and persistent inquiry—as in, “What is this?”—toward whatever arises in awareness, and toward ‘who is attending,’ ‘who is seeing,’ ‘who is meditating.’

Kabat-Zinn, 2003, p. 146

Mindfulness is paying attention

When we begin practicing paying attention to the activity of our own mind, it is common to discover and to be surprised by the fact that we are constantly generating judgments about our experience.

Kabat-Zinn, 2005, p. 33

Patience is a form of wisdom

Patience is a form of wisdom. It demonstrates that we understand and accept the fact that sometimes things must unfold in their own time.

Kabat-Zinn, 2005, p. 34

Meditation is non-doing

Although it takes a lot of work and energy of a certain kind, ultimately meditation is non-doing. It has no goal other than for you to be yourself.

Kabat-Zinn, 2005, p. 37

Meditation is a practice

In the meditation practice, we cultivate acceptance by taking each moment as it comes and being with it fully, as it is.

Kabat-Zinn, 2005, p. 39

Stop regretting the past

The moment. Stop regretting the past and fearing the future. Today is all you have. Make the most of it. Make it worth remembering.

García & Miralles, 2017, p. 185

Quotes About Meditation and Mindfulness

Meditation and mindfulness practices have advantageous effects on the human psyche and physical body. Combine these two, and you have one immensely powerful tool.

Simply put, mindfulness meditation is observing one’s experiences while sitting quietly. Benefits include improved concentration, clarity, stress release, and greater wellbeing (Eberth & Sedlmeir, 2012).

The following quotes will familiarize you with this complementary combination.

Mindfulness is more than meditation

Mindfulness, however, is more than meditation. It […] involves consciously attending to one’s moment-to-moment experience.

Shapiro et al., 2006, p. 374

Mindfulness may prevent disease

Mindfulness may hold promise as a potential way to help prevent and treat disease, increase ability to cope with pain and chronic illness, reduce stress in patients and practitioners, foster compassion, improve quality of care and reduce medical errors.

Ludwig & Kabat-Zinn, 2008, p. 1352

Mindfulness is cognitive training

Mindfulness meditation practice is a form of cognitive training aimed at learning how and where to guide one’s attention.

Kang et al., 2013, p. 193

Mindfulness promotes metacognitive awareness

Researchers theorize that mindfulness meditation promotes metacognitive awareness, decreases rumination via disengagement from perseverative cognitive activities and enhances attentional capacities through gains in working memory. These cognitive gains, in turn, contribute to effective emotion-regulation strategies.

Davis & Hayes, 2007, p. 64

Mindfulness is an impartial witness

Mindfulness is cultivated by assuming the stance of an impartial witness to your own experience. To do this requires that you become aware of the constant stream of judging and reacting to inner and outer experiences that we are all normally caught up in, and learn to step back from it.

Kabat-Zinn, 2005, p. 33

The best quotes for bringing mindfulness into your life

Mindfulness Sayings

Mindfulness, which has been practiced for thousands of years, has roots in Buddhism, Hinduism, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam (Trousselard et al., 2014).

Regardless of origins of mindfulness, the following collection of quotes will elicit some deep thinking and philosophical thoughts.

Trust your intuition

It is far better to trust in your intuition and your own authority, even if you make some ‘mistakes’ along the way, than always to look outside of yourself for guidance.

Kabat-Zinn, 2005, p. 36

Become more fully yourself

It is impossible to become like somebody else. Your only hope is to become more fully yourself. That is the reason for practicing meditation in the first place.

Kabat-Zinn, 2005, p. 36

Buddhist Mindfulness Quotes & Buddha Quotes on Mindfulness

In the practice of Buddhism, the original purpose of mindfulness is to alleviate suffering and cultivate compassion (Ludwig & Kabat-Zinn, 2008).

Buddha’s prescription for relief is the eightfold path, which can be divided into three training areas (Huxter, 2015). The meditation or concentration area of training is directly correlated to mindfulness.

Read on to hear more of the Enlightened One’s teachings concerning mindfulness.

The purification of beings

This is the only way, monks, for the purification of beings, for the overcoming of sorrow and lamentation, for the destruction of suffering and grief, for reaching the right path, for the attainment of Nibbana, namely the four foundations of mindfulness.

MN 10 Satipatthana Sutta: The Foundations of Mindfulness

Delight in heedfulness

Delight in heedfulness! Guard well your thoughts!

Dhammapada 327

The nature of ceasing

Whatever has the nature of arising has the nature of ceasing.

SN 35.204 Kimsuka Sutta: The Riddle Tree

The sage does not adhere to the seen

As a water bead on a lotus leaf, as water on a red lily, does not adhere, so the sage does not adhere to the seen, the heard, or the sensed.

SN 4.6 Jara Sutta: Old Age

Whatever is not full makes noise

Know from the rivers in clefts and in crevices: those in small channels flow noisily, the great flow silent. Whatever’s not full makes noise. Whatever is full is quiet.

SN 3.11 Nalaka Sutta: To Nalaka

Mindfulness is bare attention

In Buddhism mindfulness, or bare attention, is in the very first perception – a fleeting moment of open awareness, before the conceptual, thinking mind takes over.

Goodman & Greenland, 2009, p. 419

Mindfulness Quotes for Work

If you work, chances are you have experienced some type of work-related stress. Work-related stress can lead to high employee turnover and absenteeism, decreased job satisfaction, and organizational inefficiency (AbuAlRub, 2004).

Mindfulness may be just what you need to combat this phenomenon.

Mindfulness can decrease stress

A growing body of research shows that mindfulness can decrease stress, increase mental and physical health and cognitive functioning, and improve performance and wellbeing. As a result, a number of organizations have started to implement mindfulness programs for their employees.

Hyland et al., 2015, p. 595

Mindfulness can be helpful at work

Mindfulness seems to address important issues organizations and employees are struggling with in a time of attention overload, multi-tasking, and stressors from increasingly complex work arrangements and 24/7 connectivity.

Reb et al., 2020, p. 3

Mindfulness can be taught

By uncovering how attention and mindfulness ‘work’ and can be systematically taught, developed, and increased at work, we are convinced that this research area has the potential to substantially reduce suffering and increase flourishing at workplaces throughout the world.

Reb et al., 2020, p. 6

Employee mindfulness is beneficial

Overall, the results provide considerable support for the idea that employee mindfulness is beneficial for both employee well-being and performance.

Reb et al., 2015, p. 119

Workplace mindfulness improves job performance

Workplace mindfulness is not only positively related to job performance, but also predictive of the degree to which individuals are attached to their employer.

Dane & Brummel, 2014, p. 16

Mindfulness allows more engagement with tasks

Many people either do not enjoy their work or at the least could enjoy it more. Mindfulness theory suggests at least two possible solutions. One is to vary the perspective from which workplace tasks are viewed by the persons performing them. The other is to design interventions that allow people to become more engaged with the tasks they already perform.

Langer & Moldoveanu, 2000, p. 132

Mindful Quotes About Life

Life can be quite the roller coaster with its ups and downs. Mindfulness has been found to correlate positively with life satisfaction (Bajaj & Pande, 2016). The following quotes emphasize the relevance of mindfulness in everyday life.

Absent-mindedness is an aspect of mindfulness

Inasmuch awareness and absent-mindedness are aspects of mindfulness, one could expect the former to be positively and the latter to be negatively associated with relationship quality and well-being.

Reb et al., 2015, p. 112

Mindfulness discern alternative interpretations

Mindfulness theory suggests the possibility and benefits of discerning alternative interpretations.

Langer & Moldoveanu, 2000, p. 130

Mindfulness is an ongoing effort

Mindfulness meditation is not simply a method that one encounters for a brief time at a professional seminar and then passes on to others for use as needed when they find themselves tense or stressed. It is a way of being that takes ongoing effort to develop and refine.

Kabat-Zinn, 2003, p. 149

Mindfulness includes what can be seen

Thus, mindfulness can always be large enough to include whatever arises if it can be seen, felt, and known nonconceptually.

Kabat-Zinn, 2003, p. 150

Recognize the judging quality of mind

When practicing mindfulness, it is important to recognize this judging quality of mind when it appears and to intentionally assume the stance of an impartial witness by reminding yourself to just observe it.

Kabat-Zinn, 2005, p. 34

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Positive Mindfulness Quotes

Mindfulness has a distinct niche within positive psychology. Recent studies demonstrate that positive psychology interventions that involve mindfulness produce promising outcomes (Allen et al., 2021).

So, here are a few quotes to whet your appetite.

Loving-kindness meditation generate positive feelings

Loving-kindness meditation practices focus on the explicit generation of positive feelings toward the self and others, whereas mindfulness meditation practices aim to foster an open awareness of experience.

Creswell, 2017, p. 503

Mindfulness is a universal human capacity

Historically a Buddhist practice, mindfulness can be considered a universal human capacity proposed to foster clear thinking and open-heartedness.

Ludwig & Kabat-Zinn, 2008, p. 1350

Mindfulness is about the whole being

In practicing mindfulness you will have to bring your whole being to the process. You can’t just assume a meditative posture and think something will happen or play a tape and think that the tape is going to ‘do something’ for you.

Kabat-Zinn, 2005, p. 31

Mindfulness develops through deliberate mental practices

Just as we can improve physical fitness through regular physical exercise, we can develop mindfulness through deliberate mental practices.

Siegel et al., 2009, p. 21

Mindfulness reduces stress

There is rapidly accumulating evidence in the field of complementary health practices that greater mindfulness can not only reduce stress and stress-related medical symptoms, but can also enhance positive emotions and quality of life.

Greeson, 2009, p. 10

Mindfulness training affect physical health

Cutting-edge laboratory research is beginning to reveal some of the biological pathways through which mindfulness training may positively affect physical health and healing processes.

Greeson, 2009, p. 14

A Take-Home Message

We hope these mindfulness quotes inspired you and gave you new insight into this instrumental tool for mental wellness.

If one of your favorite mindfulness quotes was not on this list, please feel free to share it with us in the comments below.

Essentially, mindfulness practice is a deeply personal thing, and each of us will connect differently with this quintessential positive psychology practice.

We hope you enjoyed reading this article. Don’t forget to download our three Mindfulness Exercises for free.

Ed: Updated July 2023

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  • Allen, J. G., Romate, J., & Rajkumar, E. (2021). Mindfulness-based positive psychology interventions: a systematic review. BMC Psychology, 9(1), 1–18.
  • Bajaj, B., & Pande, N. (2016). Mediating role of resilience in the impact of mindfulness on life satisfaction and affect as indices of subjective well-being. Personality and Individual Differences, 93, 63–67.
  • Creswell, J. D. (2017). Mindfulness interventions. Annual Review of Psychology, 68, 491–516.
  • Dane, E., & Brummel, B. J. (2014). Examining workplace mindfulness and its relations to job performance and turnover intention. Human Relations, 67(1), 105–128.
  • Davis, D. M., & Hayes, J. A. (2012). What are the benefits of mindfulness? Monitor on Psychology, 43(7), 64.
  • Dhammapada 327
  • Eberth, J., & Sedlmeier, P. (2012). The effects of mindfulness meditation: A meta-analysis. Mindfulness, 3(3), 174–189.
  • Frewen, P. A., Evans, E. M., Maraj, N., Dozois, D. J., & Partridge, K. (2008). Letting go: Mindfulness and negative automatic thinking. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 32(6), 758–774.
  • García, H., & Miralles, F. (2017). Ikigai: The Japanese secret to a long and happy life (H. Cleary, Trans.). Penguin Books.
  • Goodman, T. A., & Greenland, S. K. (2009). Mindfulness with children: Working with difficult emotions. In F. Didonna (Ed.), Clinical handbook of mindfulness (pp. 417–429). Springer.
  • Greeson, J. M. (2009). Mindfulness research update: 2008. Complementary Health Practice Review, 14(1), 10–18.
  • Huxter, M. (2015). Mindfulness and the Buddha’s noble eightfold path. In E. Shonin, W. Van Gordon, & N. N. Singh (Eds.), Buddhist foundations of mindfulness (pp. 29–53). Springer.
  • Hyland, P. K., Lee, R. A., & Mills, M. J. (2015). Mindfulness at work: A new approach to improving individual and organizational performance. Industrial and Organizational Psychology, 8(4), 576–602.
  • Kabat-Zinn, J. (2003). Mindfulness-based interventions in context: Past, present, and future. Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice, 10(2), 144–156.
  • Kabat-Zinn, J. (2005). Full catastrophe living: Using the wisdom of your body and mind to face stress, pain, and illness (15th anniversary ed.). Delta.
  • Kang, Y., Gruber, J., & Gray, J. R. (2013). Mindfulness and de-automatization. Emotion Review, 5(2), 192–201.
  • Langer, E. J., & Moldoveanu, M. (2000). Mindfulness research and the future. Journal of Social Issues, 56(1), 129–139.
  • Ludwig, D. S., & Kabat-Zinn, J. (2008). Mindfulness in medicine. JAMA, 300(11), 1350-1352.
  • MN 10 Satipatthana Sutta: The Foundations of Mindfulness.
  • Reb, J., Narayanan, J., & Ho, Z. W. (2015). Mindfulness at work: Antecedents and consequences of employee awareness and absent-mindedness. Mindfulness, 6, 111–122.
  • Reb, J., Allen, T., & Vogus, T. J. (2020). Mindfulness arrives at work: Deepening our understanding of mindfulness in organizations. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 159, 1–7.
  • Shapiro, S. L., Carlson, L. E., Astin, J. A., & Freedman, B. (2006). Mechanisms of mindfulness. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 62(3), 373–386.
  • Siegel, R. D., Germer, C. K., & Olendzki, A. (2009). Mindfulness: What is it? Where did it come from? In F. Didonna (Ed.), Clinical handbook of mindfulness (pp. 17–35). Springer.
  • SN 3.11 Nalaka Sutta: To Nalaka.
  • SN 4.6 Jara Sutta: Old Age.
  • SN 35.204 Kimsuka Sutta: The Riddle Tree.
  • Trousselard, M., Steiler, D., Claverie, D., Canini, F. (2014). The history of mindfulness put to the test of current scientific data: Unresolved questions. Encephale-Revue de Psychiatrie Clinique Biologique et Therapeutique, 40(6), 474–480.
Comments

What our readers think

  1. Isaiah Martin

    I really like how it’s all separated into different sections so that you can find the section that you need and then find the quote you need.

    Reply
  2. Dr. Linda Miles

    As a psychotherapist I was searching for quote for a depressed client and this collection included relevant reminders.

    Reply
  3. Alex

    Wonderful quotes, but I personally would have loved to see them over real life photo’s or pictures. I am learning to teach Compassionate Mindfulness and I think many of my clients would look at these fantastic, ‘idyllic’ shots of mostly very white, very beautiful people and feel it has no relevance to their lives. It plays to every stereotype and helps the common misunderstanding about mindfulness – the idea is not to escape real life, but to engage more fully with it.

    Reply
    • plaka

      This was my strongest impression as well.

      Reply
  4. madeline

    i like this i am doing an end of the unit project on it

    Reply

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