Order from Darlene Cohen
THE ONE WHO IS NOT BUSY
Connecting With Work in a Deeply Satisfying Way.
After many years in the corporate
world, there is a feeling of "sameness" and automaticity to
my tasks and projects at hand. Since reading and practicing
the exercises in the book, I feel excited and renewed about
my work. It has helped me bridge the separation I have felt
between work and my personal life. Very inspiring!"
Sr. Benefits Specialist
The One Who is Not Busy explores our
increasingly fast-paced environment in which we try to live
our lives and perform our work. Its danger is that it can
rob us of our human experience ---its challenge, the
opportunity to develop and refine our human capacities ---
Darlene shows us the way through the challenge.
The One Who Is Not Busy provides us
with; both a paradox and hope; - that we can be both busy
and not busy at the same time --- that we have a choice in
how we live our lives no matter what the external
Darlene draws us a map for a more satisfying and
meaningful life and work experience. She takes us via a
direct route by going to the core of the situation. The
external pace of our lives can be very hectic, but it is our
attention that is the key to the quality of
our lives. It becomes a question of whether we travel the
path of a scattered attention or the path of a focused
attention. The answer determines the destination.
The One Who Is Not Busy provides us
with some very practical and earthy tools (a series of
practices and exercises) for developing the skills of
focusing our attention and inhabiting our bodies. In fact,
they work in tandem, each being a reminder for the other -
the result is the direct experiencing of ourselves and our
All individuals who are truly concerned about their work
lives will keep this book within reach, as with everything,
there is a payment – a price to be paid. The exercises
Darlene describes require effort and persistence. But it is
a small price for such huge rewards: the experience of
living our moments – living our days – and living our lives.
--Mary- Louise Freeberg,
If you are like most people, you do not really enjoy your
work. This book may truly help you. Books that help us how
do to our work abound. However, they don't address an
important question, how to get joy from your work. Because
of joy, we can continue to WANT to work. This book fills
this important need.
Retired Manager, City Distribution Division
San Francisco Water Department
"The One Who....Satisfying Way is a
guide to anyone confronted in daily and commercial life with
ambiguity, complexity, moral challenges and the other
realities of life. An owner or manager must find a way to
face life each day. It can be hard, painful and filled with
stress or it can be the way Darlene Cohen describes it. I
choose the Cohen way."
Past Corporate VP, entrepreneur and author of several
business books including Seven Laws of Money and Honest
This book brings a traditional Buddhist teaching story into
the contemporary era and shows, thru numerous exercises and
examples, how we can develop a minute-to-minute "awareness"
that enriches our everyday lives. Practical, simple, and
effective, I find myself constantly referring to Darlene's
wisdom as I navigate my version of a modern, "busy" life.
"Engineer, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab".
Having spent 25 years working as an Emergency Room
Physician, I know all to well the importance of being able
to focus and sustain one's attention at will... Multiple
ambulances can arrive within minutes of one another.
Multitasking is essential in caring for 4 to 5 life
threatening illnesses simultaneously... Darlene teaches just
how to do this, while remaining relaxed, reassuring, and
mentally focused for each person. Simultaneous inclusion as
taught in the book is one of the most useful tools one can
have in a busy ER. Everyone benefits and burn out is
--Joel Samuels M.D.
"A must read! For all of us who find ourselves caught up in
our hectic lives, racing from one task to another, never
seeming to have time to relax, this book offers an
--John Oliver Wilson,
University of California, Berkeley
After reading and practicing the ideas and exercises in The
One Who Is Not Busy, the "dead time" in a busy day - waiting in
line, walking down a hallway - is now a gift to be savored. Even
while rushing to meet a deadline, or sitting through a stressful
meeting, I experience more moments that open up beyond my
habitual task-oriented and judgmental thinking, - perhaps
sinking into body/breath, or having a sense of deep connection,
or of just being. I can play with time, instead of always
striving to conquer or outwit it. I look forward to buying
copies of the book for friends and family - I am so glad your
company is doing this. thanks,
Sara Theiss, Lawyer
I hope this finds you well, and content with the level of
business and busyness in your life. I just read a nice
little book called The One Who Is Not Busy by Darlene Cohen.
She addresses this issue of "busyness" which seems to be a
dilemma for most of us in these times of an accelerated pace
of work and demanding schedules. Many of us feel overwhelmed
by our responsibilities and commitments. We need and/or want
to work, but we yearn to feel less stressed and enjoy it
more. (This subject may someday be a column in itself.) In
the meanwhile, you may enjoy checking out Cohen's book for
some ideas on ways to manage this dilemma in order to
"connect with work in a deeply satisfying way," which is the
subtitle of her book.
Mary Luttrell, Marketing Consultant
BYLINE: Rosemary Winters , The Salt Lake Tribune (Utah)
Darlene Cohen, a Zen priest at the San Francisco Zen Center,
dissatisfaction is often a result of inattention to the
She teaches meditation techniques, which are described in
her book The One Who Is Not Busy, to help clients learn
mindfulness. Being fully present, she says, helps people
reduce stress and find enjoyment in every task.
Many Americans find difficulty focusing on the present
moment because a success-oriented society teaches them to only value end
results, Cohen says. Workers may find fleeting satisfaction
in a paycheck, a promotion or an award but not in the
day-to-day tasks on which they spend most of their time. “If
you just focus on goal orientation, you get overwhelmed and
life is fundamentally empty."
Instead, Cohen recommends discarding categories so that
every task is valued equally and each day is a flow of
Natural Health Magazine, June 1, 2004, Copyright 2004 Weider
BYLINE: Kallen, Ben
There are two approaches to creating a gratifying work
experience, says Darlene Cohen, L.M.T., a priest of the San
Francisco Zen Center and author of The One Who Is Not Busy:
Connecting With Work in a Deeply Satisfying Way. First, take
a truly refreshing break. Cohen describes a South American
tribe that walked day after day, but took frequent rest
stops "to let their souls catch up with them. "You can let
your soul catch up with you by shifting your full attention
from work to something else, then back again. The time
period can vary from gazing momentarily out the window to
observing a day of rest ("I love the concept of the
Sabbath") to taking a long vacation.
Cohen calls the second approach "simultaneous inclusion."
Soul with you by doing whatever is in front of you with your
whole heart and mind. Learning to focus and sustain your
attention at will is the most important way to improve the
quality of your working life.
To hone that skill:
• Pay attention to what you are doing at the time, rather
than being distracted by what you are not doing.
• Resist chopping up time into arbitrary stress-inducing
segments that we label busy/not busy, important/trivial or
business life/personal life. "All of it is our own time,"
says Cohen. "Think of it as a seamless flow of both time and
• Be engaged by the activity itself, rather than being
invested in the outcome.
• Practice mindfulness by eating, walking, listening to
music and conversing with others consciously and with your full
attention. Turn everyday activities into meditations.
Copyright 2004 The Miami Herald, June 21, 2004 Monday
BYLINE: BY RICHARD PACHTER; firstname.lastname@example.org
The One Who Is Not Busy: Connecting With Work in a Deeply
Darlene Cohen. Gibbs Smith Publishers. 144 pages. $14.95.
Zen philosophy makes a lot of sense in a world where logic
and empiricism often seem beside the point. Cohen's slim volume offers
soothing advice to
those who are constantly pressured from within. It's
mainly a matter of focus, according to Cohen, so she offers
gentle advice and exercises to align the mind with the
matters at hand.