The Breakout Principle: How to Activate the Natural Trigger That Maximizes Creativity, Athletic Performance, Productivity, and Personal Well-Being

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9780743223980: The Breakout Principle: How to Activate the Natural Trigger That Maximizes Creativity, Athletic Performance, Productivity, and Personal Well-Being

Would it surprise you to learn that to solve a seemingly unsolvable problem, you need to get up and leave the room? A walk in the woods will help you finish your novel? Humming can make you a better tennis player? Or completely giving up is the way to succeed?
In The Breakout Principle, the bestselling author of The Relaxation Response delivers the ultimate self-help principle -- simple instructions to activate a powerful biological trigger that converts conflict and confusion into clarity and extraordinary performance, a state athletes refer to as "the zone."
More than three decades ago, Dr. Herbert Benson of the Harvard Medical School began research into why some people are devastated by stress while others thrive, turning it into brilliant achievement. Now The Breakout Principle reports the discovery of an easy-to-access inner switch that increases mental function, enhances creativity and productivity, maximizes athletic performance, and enriches spiritual life. The same internal mechanism that improves a tennis serve or golf putt strengthens your speaking skills, makes you a better negotiator, and fosters inner peace and belief.
Dr. Benson and coauthor William Proctor explain the cutting-edge science behind the phenomenon in accessible language, clearly describe the four distinct phases of the Breakout, and provide simple, step-by-step instructions on how to activate the Breakout "trigger." Compelling case histories and information on how to incorporate Breakouts into daily life are woven throughout the book.
Dr. Benson's previous discoveries have helped millions reduce the harmful effects of stress. The Breakout Principle now reveals how to maximize your untapped abilities and powers.

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If self-help books usually fall short of delivering life changes, The Breakout Principle is a book of a different stripe: a science-based path to self-transformation. Herbert Benson, M.D. pulls together 30 years of mind-body research to describe the Breakout Principle: "a powerful mind-body impulse that severs prior mental patterns and--even in times of great stress or emotional trauma--opens an inner door to a host of personal benefits." Breakouts open the door to different kinds of peak experiences--self-awareness, creativity, productivity, athleticism, rejuvenation, and transcendence--and lead to lasting changes.

Benson explains the stages of stress/struggle, release (during which you give up unresolved destructive or negative thought patterns), breakout/peak experience, and "new-normal" state. He balances the science behind his concepts with practical, how-to tips. For example, many different activities and types of experiences can trigger your personal Breakout in the release stage, and Benson helps you figure out which ones might work for you: repetitive mental or physical activity, an absorbing personal encounter, expression of your personal belief system, "total abandon" to an intense experience, altruistic activity, or filling your mind with a dominant sensory impression. He and skillful co-author William Proctor illustrate points with case studies and personal reflections, making complex medical and philosophical issues more easily accessible.

Benson, Associate Professor of Medicine at the Harvard Medical School and founding president of the Mind/Body Medical Institute, is well known for his mind/body research, especially his work on the relaxation response. His other books include The Relaxation Response, Beyond the Relaxation Response: How to Harness the Healing Power of Your Personal Beliefs, and Timeless Healing. This powerful and empowering book is highly recommended as a guide for readers willing to do the work of making a life change. --Joan Price

About the Author:

Herbert Benson, MD, is the Mind Body Medical Institute Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School. He is the author of the mega-bestselling book, The Relaxation Response, as well as ten other trade books. His groundbreaking work established the modern field of mind body medicine. Dr. Benson is the Director Emeritus of the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital.

William Proctor, JD, is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School and has written or co-written more than 80 books, including Beyond the Relaxation Response with Dr. Benson; The Templeton Touch with Sir John Templeton; and several international bestsellers with the “father of aerobics,” Dr. Kenneth H. Cooper.

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