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The Wisdom of a Broken Heart: An Uncommon Guide to Healing, Insight, and Love Hardcover – December 29, 2009

4.7 out of 5 stars 60 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"The Wisdom of a Broken Heart is an achingly beautiful window into the softest part of us, helping us make friends with the deepest part of our soul. Yet, as always, Piver leads us from brokenness to openness without our hardly noticing. This book is a gift to anyone who knows there is some juicy aliveness at the bottom of pain and wants a way to feel whole again." -- Mark Hyman, M.D., author of UltraMetabolism and The UltraMind Solution

"Susan soothes at the same time she illuminates -- reading this book, my heart grew three sizes bigger. I have never read anything more helpful or wise about heartbreak. You may find yourself laughing out loud; you will certainly find yourself feeling hope again." -- Jennifer Louden, author of The Woman's Comfort Book and The Life Organizer

"Susan Piver's new book helps turn the pain of a breakup into a deeper understanding of intimacy. She shows you how to relate to your broken heart with consciousness and acceptance to find comfort, clarity, and balance, even when they seem impossible. After reading this book, you'll know beyond a doubt that you can love again, bigger and better than ever before." -- Gay Hendricks, Ph.D., author of The Big Leap and coauthor, with Dr. Kathlyn Hendricks, of Conscious Loving

"The body has an innate ability to recover from injury, and so does the heart. Through spiritual insights and practices, Susan Piver's new book walks you through the healing process." -- Andrew Weil, M.D.

"Piver has managed to perform an extraordinary task, namely, inspire a person to want to love again. She knows how to repair the shattered soul, using her personal experience as well as the wisdom of great saints, poets, and cultural elders." -- Caroline Myss, author of Anatomy of the Spirit and Entering the Castle

"This is a wonderful book. Full of wisdom, humanity, and humor. And it abounds with helpful exercises to turn pain into wisdom. It is helpful even if you are not (right now) sick with disappointment, betrayal, or heartache." -- Natalie Goldberg, author of Old Friend from Far Away and Writing Down the Bones

About the Author


Susan Piver
’s bestselling books include The Hard Questions: 100 Essential Questions to Ask Before You Say ‘I Do,’ and How Not to Be Afraid of Your Own Life. A graduate of a Buddhist seminary, she writes the relationships column for Body & Soul magazine and is a frequent guest on network television, including The Oprah Winfrey Show, Today, and The Tyra Banks Show. She lives in Boston.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Atria Books (December 29, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416593152
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416593157
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.9 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #938,584 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
poignantly written, has some helpful exercises, but is limited in scope towards heartbreak resolution...ultimately it's about honouring one's grief, accepting it, in the body and working with it to release it... but not much else in terms of a more proactive comprehensive package.

despite the author's good intentions this approach to heartache resolution only succeeds so far.. you'll continue to get caught up in prolonged heartache and carry your baggage (which we all have)into your next relationship unless you also question your belief systems/experiences of closure from the past...ie what of codependency, or lack of closure, or addiction, or abandonment, or abuse, or 'victim' mentality?...using mindfulness only goes so far to resolving these greater themes of baggage and hurt that can be mixed in with heartache...'feel the feelings and drop the story' to quote pema chodron, is fine to allow us to process the feelings, get out of the mind chatter and ultimately to help with the healing, to be sure, but there IS a story to be confronted and worked upon, too....sure piver suggests journalling (as most breakup recovery books do also) but there must be more.

where is the 'wisdom' of a broken heart, for example, if you haven't ''completed'' your previous relationships properly, thus mixing so much current grief with old grief, thereby lengthening your emotional heartache? (russell & friedman's 'Moving on..' book at bottom discusses this at great length with many practical & useful exercises)...their take, and I agree is: if you haven't healed and understood better your heart's baggage you'll only revisit these themes onto your next romantic relationship, most likely once more encountering disappointment.
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Format: Hardcover
I read this as soon as I could because I've been a fan of Susan Piver's work for years. I'm glad I did. The Wisdom of a Broken Heart doesn't just offer solace and guidance to those whose hearts have been broken because of a romantic relationship, but also to those of us whose hearts have just been broken by Life. As usual her writing is engaging, clear, empathic and real, not to mention, warm and funny. I'll be keeping an extra copy on hand to loan out. I want mine to stay in my house, where it belongs.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book the LAST time I was heartbroken, and found it incredibly helpful, and now, once again, I'm reading it while in the throes of a broken heart. The thing I like about this book is that the author is one of the only ones (besides Pema Chodron) I've read who writes about heartbreak the way it really IS, without implying that you shouldn't be in so much pain. Most self-help writers say "Yeah, it hurts, but you'll get over it." In this book, the author has humor and compassion for the pain, shares her own experience of heartbreak, doesn't tell us we shouldn't be feeling it, but also makes sure we see the options for walking out of it. That's a pretty fine line to walk: not too coddling, not too stern, not to blaming, and not too sentimental. I also like that the author shares her own stories and others' stories about how it actually FEELS and how we THINK when we're heartbroken, which makes the reader feel not so alone, not so crazy or out of whack. I loved the cornbread example, about how minor things can seem to trigger intense pain after loss. The exercises are profound, usually pretty simple, and unique, getting us to the somatic and soul levels rather than staying in the head, the way many self-help and therapeutic techniques often do. I'm very grateful for this book right now!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is an excellent book for those whose hearts are newly broken or still suffering from old wounds. It is soundly written with loving, practical ways to recognize signs of a broken heart and how to gently but effectively begin to heal. Well worth reading!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
What an amazing book! I can't praise it enough. I wasn't sure what to expect, but wow, oh wow. I have never written book reviews before (too lazy) but I had to comment on this one. I am still suffering from the aftermath of a heart wrenching breakup 9 months after it happened. This is heartbreak in all its honesty, exactly as it feels, and even describes the crazy phase we all go through right after a breakup. Reading this book made me realize that I am not alone and that there is no room for shame over what happened. Most importantly, my thoughts are my own...what a realization that the only way to truly heal from a heartbreak is to analyze and to face the terrifying fears that arise after a heartbreak. Change your thought patterns and you can indeed be wiser from a broken heart. What an amazing message. I feel hope finally...and the possibility of joy with someone else.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I can say without exaggeration that this book saved my life. I found it immediately after a devastating breakup when I was at the edge of a dangerous abyss of severe depression, the kind I may not have been able to climb out of. This book isn't about shallow things like man-bashing or get a pedicure to feel pretty again! Instead Susan gives you tools to take a horrible experience and grow from it, to come out the other side a wiser, stronger person. Read this book, and read it with an open mind and no judgments. Best of luck to you all, I hope this book helps you as much as it helped me.
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