Mindfulness is a life skill which involves training the attention to our present moment experience with an attitude of curiosity, equanimity, and compassion. Rooted in Buddhist psychology and philosophy, mindfulness has more than thirty years of clinical research behind it demonstrating the beneficial effects of the practice. People who practice mindfulness have lower levels of physiological stress, a more flexible and optimistic outlook on life, greater self-compassion and self-awareness, a reduction in the intensity of negative emotions, an improved ability to concentrate, and a higher tolerance for the risk associated with stepping outside one’s comfort zone. Practiced consistently, mindfulness cultivates well-being and resilience.
Buddhist philosophy makes a distinction between pain and suffering. Pain in life is unavoidable and includes all the losses and uncomfortable situations we cannot control, ranging from an annoying colleague to the death of a loved one. Suffering refers to the unskillful ways in which we (often unintentionally) deepen or amplify our pain. In stressful conditions, to varying degrees, we all feel vulnerable. It is how we respond to these feelings of vulnerability and the challenges facing us that makes the difference.
Mindfulness is a relational discipline: we are cultivating the means to be in wise and skilful relationship with ourselves, with others, and with whatever circumstances we may face in life, however unpleasant or difficult. This process begins with learning to be with things as they are now, without our habitual reactions of craving, avoiding, resisting, compulsively fixing, or analysing. Through an ongoing practice of developing curious, attentive openness to our experience, mindfulness creates the internal conditions for approaching whatever life throws at us with greater ease and equanimity.
Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction. The eight-week ‘gold standard’ course developed by Jon Kabat Zinn, and including aspects of Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT)
Mindfulness training for organisations and academic institutions. Courses adapted to the needs of the group, and including stress reduction, interpersonal communication, conflict resolution, and team effectiveness.
Individual online training in mindfulness. One-to-one private professional support during times of stress, anxiety, depression, relationship conflicts, personal loss, or life transitions.
The next MBSR begins 25 September 2018.
Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR)
Simple Awareness: Centring attention; coming home to the body
Attention and the Brain: The neuroscience of mindfulness meditation
How We Add Suffering to Pain: Attachment and aversion
Stress and Eu-stress: Responding versus reacting
Difficult Thoughts and Emotions: Befriending internal experience in times of stress
Stress in Relationships: Mindful compassion toward self and others
Taking Personal Responsibility: Knowing what to put down and what to cultivate
Sustaining the Practice: Mindfulness in everyday life
This course develops both formal and informal skills. Formal skills include sitting mindfulness meditation, walking meditation, and the body scan. These practices are the cornerstone of mindfulness and the foundation on which self-awareness and equanimity are built. Informal skills relate to mindfulness in daily life; i.e., practices including compassionate awareness of thoughts and feelings, emotional self-regulation, recognition of unhelpful habits of thought and behaviour, effective conflict management, centring in present moment experience, and cultivation of a resilient attitude to all life experiences.
Dates and location: Eight Tuesday evenings beginning 25 September, Aventino. The venue is well-served by public transportation, and has available on-street parking.
For details or to register please write email@example.com