“Wherever you put the mind, the body will follow.” This core belief both sums up and propels social psychologist Ellen Langer’s work.

Over nearly four decades, Dr. Langer’s breakthrough research on mindfulness has greatly influenced thinking across a range of fields, and has proven to have significant impact on business performance, leadership potential, and personal health and well-being. Her theory – which posits that by actively noticing new things and paying attention to what’s going on around us instead of operating on auto-pilot, we can reduce stress, unlock creativity and boost performance – are powerful antidotes in an increasingly chaotic world.

Oft-described as the “mother of mindfulness,” Dr. Langer – Harvard University’s first female tenured professor in psychology – has authored 11 books and more than 200 research articles on the topic, including a series of four international best-sellers:  “Mindfulness” (Da Capo Press, 1990); “Counterclockwise: Mindful Health and the Power of Possibility” (Ballantine Books, 2009); “On Becoming an Artist: Reinventing Yourself Through Mindful Creativity” (Ballantine Books, 2006), and “The Power of Mindful Learning” (Da Capo Press, 1998). Her latest book, “The Handbook of Mindfulness” (Wiley-Blackwell, 2014), is an anthology that brings together the latest multi-disciplinary research on mindfulness. She also continues to write extensively on related themes including the illusion of control, aging, stress, decision-making and health – each examined through the lens of her mindfulness theory.

Dr. Langer is a passionate and articulate lecturer, highly regarded as a guest speaker around the world. Among numerous other honors, she is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, four Distinguished Scientist Awards, a World Congress Award, NYC Alumni Achievement Award and the Staats Award for Unifying Psychology. The citation for Dr. Langer’s Distinguished Contributions Award from the American Psychological Association reads, “…her pioneering work revealed the profound effects of increasing mindful behavior… and offers new hope to millions whose problems were previously seen as unalterable and inevitable. Ellen Langer has demonstrated repeatedly how our limits are of our own making.”

Founder of The Langer Mindfulness Institute – an organization dedicated to furthering mindfulness research – Dr. Langer consults with companies to “redesign the workplace” by fostering mindful leadership, spurring innovation, and instituting mindful strategy processes and work/life integration. The results are compelling: greater efficiency and effectiveness, reduced burnout and health costs, improved problem-solving and an overall higher likelihood of survival in an ever-changing world. The impact of Dr. Langer’s work and that of the Institute reaches beyond business, teaching the average person how to live boldly. Recently replicated in a BBC production, her famous Counterclockwise study, where people lived for a week in a retreat retrofitted to an earlier time to regain vitality, further authenticates her psychology of possibility.

Dr. Langer received her doctorate from Yale University.


Da Capo Press (January 1990)

Ellen Langer’s Website

Harvard University Faculty Page

The Langer Mindfulness Institute