Sharing A Room On a Retreat…

So what’s it like to share a room on a retreat with someone you have never met before…Here is one of our previous retreatants experience.

I shared a room at my last retreat and it was a wonderful, warm experience.  We had a good old chat before going in to silence whilst we unpacked. It was so useful as other more seasoned retreat ants were able to reassure those who hadn’t experienced one before. There was a real sense of community in that room, it was very comforting. We also arranged practicalities like, whether we would leave a lamp on if the other people came to bed after you and where the hairdryer would be kept! Even on the first night I felt I had experienced a lovely connection with like minded people, after all, we were all there to deepen our practice , take time out from busy lives, learn and of course … eat delicious nutritious food ( and cake!)

During the retreat , whilst in silence I felt a lovely warm and much deeper sense of connection with my room mates. I had thought I wouldn’t be able to tolerate people’s noises at night but I actually practised mindful listening before drifting in to one of the best sleeps I’ve experienced.  Having experienced both being in a single room and a shared I would happily do either at a retreat..but my experience of sharing was definitely one of connecting with people on a much deeper level… I learnt a lot about myself that I took in to my daily life and practice an I made some new life long friends too.

Sit back and enjoy the little video tour that shows the beautiful bedrooms available…

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Join us for a three day retreat in the stunning “Millhouse Retreat” in glorious Devon

It’s time  to nurture yourself with a wonderful 3 day retreat at the “Millhouse Retreat” set in the glorious Devon countryside.

Mill House is set in 7 acres of Devon countryside, this beautiful thatched farmhouse combines the atmosphere of a centuries old building with the comfort of a modern home.

Good food and good conversation alongside times of stillness and silence. Exploring spirituality is challenging – it helps you reconnect with yourself and others. It takes time to think about the pattern and rhythm of your life and you can do that here.

The first of these retreats will be 5-7th October and the second one will be 1-3 March 2019

With teachers Karen Atkinson and Angie Ward, the retreat will move into silence towards the end of the first day until lunchtime on the final day.

Each day includes two daily periods of gentle mindful movement, silent and guided meditations, meetings with the teachers and free time to explore the beautiful surroundings and nurture yourself within the Devon countryside.

Includes teaching, accommodation and food.

Price from £410 per retreat, per person, depending on room choice. Please e-mail or call for full details. https://mindfulnessuk.com/product/3-day-mindfulness-compassion-retreats

To book online a £100 deposit is required.

Welcome to Anna Taylor….

We are delighted to introduce you to Anna Taylor who will be teaching our Integrating Mindfulness and Compassion in Professional Practice Teacher Training Course (IMCPP) which starts in Cambridge in the autumn.

“I gained so much from this Integrating Mindfulness and Compassion into Professional Practice course with Mindfulness UK (Mindfulnessuk1). It has very much changed the way that I work both in teaching yoga classes, my yoga therapy work and working one-to-one with clients. The beauty of the course is that it enables you to incorporate the practices of mindfulness and compassion within your own work setting, whether that be working as a yoga teacher, a life coach, a school teacher. I met people from all different backgrounds who were adapting these practices for their own workplace needs”

The course has now expanded and is being delivered in London, Bristol, Taunton and Cambridge and I am delighted to be co-delivering the Cambridge course which begins in November.

The main pre-requisite for undertaking the training is to have a regular meditation practice and have undertaken an 8-week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) course. If this is something that you feel may benefit you and what you offer professionally do visit https://mindfulnessuk.com/…/integrating-mindfulness-and-com… for more information.

Welcome Anna from us all at MindfulnessUK

Mindfulness & Wellbeing Magazines…A Review..

Visiting the supermarket this week I noticed on the stand two new magazines aimed at Mindfulness and Wellbeing and thought I would buy them to see what they were like.

At £5.99 each they were quiet an investment. Maybe I am a little out of touch with magazine costs but they were certainly ones that would not end up in the recycling at that price.

So grabbing a coffee and a much needed break I sat down with the first one called In The Moment Mindful Ways To Live Your Life Well.

The front cover is beautiful illustrated and very eye catching along with a free gift of some mini envelope notelets.

It is full of articles on wellbeing, being creative, lifestyle and finding calm in various ways which are very informative and easy to read and understand.

It’s such a shame that it is clearly aimed at women. Men do get a rough deal when it comes to Mindfulness and their mental health, and in no way should it be seen as something for women only. I hope they will address this.

The second magazine is called Breathe and make time for yourself . I loved the cover! it would make a lovely coffee table magazine that at first glance looks like it is aimed at everyone.

This one also focuses on Wellbeing Mindfulness Creativity Escaping. It is really beautifully illustrated and packed with many articles and topics

Sadly there is also no content for men which is such a shame!

I truly hope that one day a publishing house can produce something aimed at all. I guess it’s a sad fact that maybe it is women who are the ones that buy magazines and I hope that a partner somewhere might also pick it up and have a read.

Mindfulness and Wellbeing is at the heart of all that we do at MindfulnessUK. It’s about every aspect of our lives that all play a part in making us well, happy and contented both mentally and physically.

To encompass all these aspects of wellness in one magazine is a great idea. It will give readers the chance to look at every part of their lives to see where they can make improvements to aid their wellness, which is a fantastic idea.

At £5.99 each would I buy it every month or just pick one up when I was shopping? Actually I think if money was no object I would buy them. If you are looking for inspiration then the articles are a great read and very informative. They would make a great gift for someone who is in need of a lift.

If you are new to Mindfulness and want to learn more then I am not sure that these magazines will give you the background and skills to do the meditation practises and the knowledge and ethos of living in the present moment.

Mindfulness is a skill to learn and takes PRACTISE so we would always suggest you take an 8 week Mindfulness course that will set you on your way.

For more information about our courses please visit. https://mindfulnessuk.com/mindfulness

 

 

Happy 70th Birthday to The NHS….

On 5th July 1948 the NHS was launched by the then Health Secretary Aneurin Bevan, at Park Hospital in Manchester.

For the first time hospitals, doctors, nurses, pharmacists, opticians and dentists were all brought together under one umbrella to provide services for free to all at the point of delivery.

Healthcare in Britain before 1948, and how to access it, had many drawbacks. In 1911 the chancellor Lloyd George established a system of National Health Insurance. This offered benefits to the contributor below a certain level of income, but did not include dependants.

These contributions were not graduated according to level of income but a flat rate that everyone had to pay, approximately half by the employee and half by the employer.

In return for these payments individuals received cash benefits for sickness, accident and disability. They were paid at a fixed rate and distributed through insurance companies. Contributors also had the right to free but limited care from a doctor on a local list and yet were only entitled to hospital treatment when suffering from tuberculosis.

Lloyd Georges Insurance Service was not the only health care system in place pre 1948. The Poor Law offered relief to the most impoverished people and workhouses provided their own infirmaries.

The other major hospital system offering care to patients before the advent of the NHS was that of voluntary hospitals. The majority of these were initially supported by donations from wealthy subscribers who had the right to sponsor patients for admission. By the 1930’s these hospitals found themselves in a financial crisis.

The British health care system pre 1948 did not work. It was very much a patchwork of various systems that were just not accessible to the majority of people in need. Whilst the working man may have health cover their families didn’t and often had to resort to over counter and self medication in times of sickness. If a real health emergency occurred many families suffered huge major financial problems trying to pay for treatment.

Aneurin Bevans plan to bring good healthcare to all was a hugely ambitious . The central principles were clear. “The Health Service will be available to all and financed entirely by taxation, which meant that people paid into it according to their means”

By 1952 prescription charges were introduced of one shilling which today equates to 5p and a flat rate of £1 for dental treatment. Prescription charges were abolished in 1965 and they remained free until 1968 when the charges were reintroduced .

There are many hugely notable medical advancements during those years….here a just a few

1953. Our DNA structure was revealed by James D Watson & Francis Crick, two Cambridge scientists. Knowing the structure of DNA allowed the study of diseases caused by defective genes. Along with Rosalind Franklin and Maurice Wilkins this finding heralded a huge advancement in medicine.

1954. Smoking and lung cancer link was established.

1958. Polio and Diphtheria vaccination programmes launched.

1960. The first UK kidney transplant was performed.

1961 The contraceptive pill was launched.

1962. The first hip replacement was performed.

1967. The Abortion Act was introduced making it legal for a termination up to 28 weeks. In 1990 the limit was lowered to 24 weeks.

1972. CT scans revolutionise the was doctors can examine the body.

1978. The worlds first baby is born as a result of IVF.

1979. The first successful bone marrow transplant on a child takes place.

1980. MRI scans introduced.

1980 Keyhole surgery.

1986. First AIDS health campaign.

1987. Heart, Lung Liver Transplant.

1988. Breast Screening introduced.

1994. NHS organ donor register.

1998. NHS Direct launched.

2002. Primary Care Trusts launched. First Successful gene therapy.

2006 NHS Bowel Cancer Screening Programme, Vaccination of babies against pneumococcal meningitis begins.

2007 Introduction of robotic arm leads to groundbreaking heart operations.

2012. first person in the UK to have a hand transplant.

There have been so many ground breaking events in the past 70 years of the NHS that have all contributed to our health and wellbeing today and without them many people would have died prematurely.

We have been blessed with incredibly knowledgeable people who have over the years helped to make our NHS the most special and trustworthy resource in the world with their expertise and commitment to helping everyone.

Today this beloved institution, as it has since its birth, is packed full of dedicated staff who give their lives and souls to us in order to make us well. These amazing people who every day go into work never knowing what their day will bring, no matter how tired they are, no matter what problems they have themselves, will draw on all their strengths and resources to enable their patients to get the best of care and kindness given in a loving and respectful way.

These incredibly special people need to be looked after, nurtured and thanked from the bottom of our hearts for all they do, for all they have to deal with, for all the horrible things they have to see, because without them and our NHS we would be lost.

Happy 70th Birthday NHS…we never want to imagine our children will never have you to support them in their hour of need.

 

 

 

How does MindfulnessUK include Equality, Diversity and Inclusion in the work they do?..here’s how..

Angie Ward from MindfulnessUK completed the IMCPP, has a 20 year background in health and social care and now teaches the Integrating Mindfulness and Compassion in Professional Practice (IMCPP) and Master classes to graduates on how to work with vulnerable children and adults.

The incredibly successful Minding Your Health in Education (MYHE)Programme was taught in both mainstream and Special Educational Needs (SEN) provision, it included ways to differentiate and work with children and young people with additional needs, Angie Ward and several IMCPP graduates who contributed had experience of working inclusively.

An Educational Psychologist was taught some of the practices of the Minding Your Health In Education MYHE programme in a one day Masterclass with Angie  after completing the Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), she now goes in to different schools supporting children with SEN and complex needs who are having problems staying in school provision and this helps them stay in education and thrive.

Mental Health Foundation (MHF) work:

In 2017 MindfulnessUK started a partnership project with the well respected  Mental Health Foundation  (MHF)  – Developed and Delivered a 2 day workshop, one day Mindfulness and Compassion and one day user experienced for digital application with young people from 3 education provisions, an inclusive project;

Mainstream all boys school

Mainstream all-girls school

SEN mixed gender school

To find out what Mindfulness and Compassion practices benefitted them, and from their experience how they felt Mindfulness and compassion would work in a digital application.  A lovely project that required a Mindfulness and Compassion teacher with the skills and expertise to differentiate and engage a wide range of children and young people with varying needs, both for in class and offer home practice in an inclusive and accessible way. The young people presented their findings and ideas dragons den style.

MindfulnessUK are Consultants, working in partnership with The Mental Health Foundation  (MHF) and The Foundation for people with Learning Disability to research how to widen the reach of Mindfulness to people with Learning disabilities and their families.

Angie Ward leads MindfulnessUK as part of the Working party, hosted by The Mental Health Foundation  (MHF) and The Foundation for people with Learning Disability consisting of many different organisations, including Bangor University,  developing Mindfulness and Learning disability good practice guidelines.

Karen works one to one with clients who have Huntington’s Disease, teaching Mindful Movement to help with core stability, focus and communication skills.  Karen has taught Angie through supervision to also work with this client and Angie now brings a music element to vary the programme.  The outcomes are excellent, this client has kept her mobility.

Using the toolkit from MYHE programme, Angie differentiates the practices and works with children and young people who have complex needs, teaching parent and child Mindfulness and Compassion simultaneously, this works as there are no child care issues for the parent, it helps them bond and communicate more effectively and develop a positive relationship.  The parent can support the child with home practice.

For further information on our Teacher Training Programmes please click on the link https://mindfulnessuk.com/teach-mindfulness

 

Equality, Diversity & Inclusion..Mindfulness For All

Karen Atkinson from MindfulnessUK spent many hours writing their Integrating Mindfulness and Compassion In Professional Practice Teaching Training programme (IMCPP)

Her biggest inspiration that she drew from were all her past and present clients who had come to her from all walks of life with very varied mental and physical health problems. Karen knew that this programme had to be able to reach out to every part of our community, enabling practitioners from all walks of life to be able to use it responsibly and compassionately to the people they teach and support.

As a teacher training organisation Karen knew that this programme had to be a robust qualification that would enable practitioners from many different backgrounds to be able to integrate Mindfulness and Compassion into their practices.

This broad spectrum of practitioners, who this teaching programme has been written for, enables many more people to be reached that would benefit from the power of Mindfulness and Compassion practices who would potentially never have had access to it before.

The Integrating Mindfulness and Compassion Teacher Training Programme enables practitioners from many diverse backgrounds, who support people with mental health problems, physical disabilites, people who are homeless, and many other groups to incorporate Mindfulness and Compassion with all their knowledge, skills and expertise to deliver a fully integrated and supportive programme to their clients with the understanding of Mindfulness and the importance of Compassion.

MindfulnessUK have graduates that work with people who have additional needs along with their families, parents and staff that care for them.

Here are a few examples of our graduates backgrounds and the groups they support using the Mindfulness and Compassion programme.

Learning disabilities, from mild to profound and complex.

Learning difficulty such as dyslexia.

Physical disabilities

Huntingtons

Parkinsons

ME & MS

People who are homeless

Addiction

Speech, language and communication needs

Autism

Aspergers……..the list is endless.

This teacher training qualification is open to anyone who has completed the 8 week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Course and wants to integrate Mindfulness and Compassion into their work. You don’t need a degree to apply, though many of our graduates have, this course is aimed at everyone.

There are excellent outcomes. The qualification enables graduates to develop their own bespoke programmes for individuals and groups, adding another set of skills to complement their expertise. Here are a few examples:-

A Mindfulness and Compassion based programme to support homeless people into employment.

Supporting parents and parent carers to bond with their children with Aspergers.

Support the wellbeing of staff in large corporate settings.

Promoting awareness of stress and what can be done about it in the workplace.

Supporting the wellbeing of people with terminal illnesses.

People living with chronic pain

People experiencing racial and sexual discrimination

Patients in a physio department .

MindfulnessUK believe in Equality, Diversity & Inclusion and have incorporated these three things into all of their teacher training programmes and into all of the work they do.

For further details click on this link https://mindfulnessuk.com/teach-mindfulness/integrating-mindfulness-and-compassion-in-professional-practice

These courses are available in London, Somerset, Cambridge, Bristol

 

 

 

 

Soccer coach uses meditation to keep boys focused and calm in flooded cave in Thailand

We have all been avidly watching  the news over the past few weeks waiting for the rescue efforts of the twelve Thai boys and their soccer coach trapped in the flooded cave in Northern Thailand.

Yesterday it was reported that all of the boys and their coach have been rescued, such wonderful news for their families, and the whole world, who were all waiting with such anxiety in the hope that it would have a happy ending.

All of the boys were rescued by an amazingly brave and selfless team of Thai Navy Seals who risked their own lives to save this team in such dangerous and difficult circumstances.

The 11-16 year old soccer players and their coach, 25 year old Ekapol Chanthawong, were exploring the cave after their football practice on June 23 when suddenly the cave flooded because of heavy rains from a monsoon. It was a pair of British divers who 10 days later found them all perched on a rock deep inside the cave. What followed was the most difficult of rescues.

Now they are all safe and being treated in hospital the question everyone is asking is “How did they manage to mentally survive being trapped for all that time”?

Reports suggest that to help the boys remain calm and focused their coach Ekapol drew on all his learnings as a Buddhist Monk and got the team to stay calm by using meditation techniques, enabling them to sit quietly in the dark.

Meditation as we know has a host of health benefits and is uniquely suited to help people cope in times of extreme stress. Several studies have found links between meditation and immediate measurable reduction in feelings of depression and anxiety as well as physical pain.

That benefit of meditation would have proved hugely helpful to the Thai players who would have been cold, scared and alone more than 2 miles deep into a labyrinthine cave network.

Once again meditation has proved itself to be beyond doubt the most powerful tool we have to assist us in times of need.

Meditation creates heightened feelings of empathy which is something this small team of isolated people would have needed to enable them to support each other.

A wonderful result for all those boys families and friends who must have thought this rescue was impossible but a special thanks from the world must be paid to the former Thai Navy diver Petty Officer Saman Gunan who very sadly died taking part in the rescue efforts.

 

 

 

 

MBSR Training In Wonderful Finland with MindfulnessUK

With the summer holidays fast approaching and the weather being absolutely amazing it’s hard to focus on the autumn months but sadly they will all too soon be upon us.

Autumn is always heralded as a time for new beginnings and if you have been thinking about training to become a mindfulness teacher and would love to combine it with a holiday to Finland then now is your chance.

Karen has been out to Finland to teach mindfulness to others but the knock on effect is that she has had so many requests to go back and train others to teach that we have set up two separate dates when she will be out there.

Karen would like to extend this opportunity to anyone from the UK who wants to train to teach mindfulness to others in the glorious setting in Finland. The dates that are available will be 28th September -30th September 2018 and 14th March- 17th March 2019.

This will be a Residential Retreat and you will  train to deliver the MBSR course in beautiful Rokua Health and Spa Hotel. If you wish, please join Karen for a couple of days to enjoy the Spa in this Geopark before the training days Package price includes six days of teaching, food, accommodation and use of spa facilities. Twin room £1400 per person, single room £1500 per person.

See website for details and BOOK NOW https://mindfulnessuk.com/teach-mindfulness/mindfulness-based-stress-reduction-teacher-training

 

 

Karen Atkinson Director of MindfulnessUK talks about Mindfulness & Self Compassion (Talk given at the Mindful Living Show London 2018)

My name is Karen Atkinson and I’m the founder of MindfulnessUK. I have been invited to talk about mindful self-compassion and how developing self-compassion has supported me enormously through difficult times. I have a background in nursing and then went on to become a therapist teaching mindfulness and compassion to clients suffering from long-term chronic health conditions, traumatic psychological and mental health issues such as long-term depression, stress and anxiety and also physiological conditions such as pain. 

Because of my personal and professional experiences over the years of the power of these practices, I set up my own Centre in Taunton and now feel very blessed, teaching clients far and wide and teacher training other professionals to deliver them too, both in the UK and Europe.

We know the Benefits of Mindfulness

  1. 1) Reality
  2. 2) To see things in perspective
  3. 3) The truth perhaps of the situation and 
  4. 4) To become more aware of our habitual styles of thinking and behaving. 
  5. 5) Through the increase in awareness it improves our sense of self-worth and self-esteem
  6. 6) Brings about clarity
  7. 7) Softens our pain and suffering and 
  8. 8) Gives us the capacity to regulate our emotions.

However I’ve been teaching Mindfulness skills in the clinical setting for around 17/18 years and it is only in the last few years that I have really started to observe the benefits of teaching compassion alongside Mindfulness. 

Dry and Stuck

Mindfulness can be a little bit dry, it can facilitate feelings of being stuck, going around in circles sometimes with our insights and newfound understanding of ourselves. But where do you go from here?

Compassion- tools to warm up and move forwards

Compassion is a way of bringing warm gentleness, softness and friendly attention to whatever arises for us in that present moment. To me I always think of it as a way of feeling into things as they are and in giving us the tools to then be able to move forwards in a very different way than we have been doing before.

Garuda Bird

In philosophical terms the Buddhist tradition talks of a mythical bird where one wing represents wisdom, Mindfulness, and the other represents compassion. It is out of balance to have one without the other. Therefore Mindfulness and compassion are of equal importance in helping us to develop, to grow and to help you move forward in a very different way.

I would like to explain to you why I feel so passionately about this and how the compassionate element has really brought a different quality to me personally and why I go on to teach it to my clients in my groups, individuals and teacher training.

I know on a very deep level how life changing it can be. Having been a therapist for those years I was given a diagnosis of cancer five years ago now. I had always thought that I was very kind and compassionate to others and that I also had a sense of being kind to myself. I realised that actually bringing my mindfulness practice to the diagnosis and the treatment was extraordinarily helpful because I didn’t get caught up in catastrophising, layering up the distress, creating secondary suffering.

However, I clearly remember sitting doing my mindfulness practice, crying and sobbing because I was so aware of the intensity of the emotional pain, the mental trauma and feeling a bit let down by my practice. I knew these practices so well but I didn’t feel they were enough to deal with and combat such distress. I realised that I needed something else and started to investigate self-compassion practices with fervour, reading about them, practising them, focusing on myself, which was new and unchartered territory for me.

I recognised that I was wracked with a sense of blame and guilt, feeling that I had done something to give myself cancer which obviously added further to my distress. I felt such a deep, guttural fear and realised I had to do something differently in order to deal with the immediate effects of major surgery and radiotherapy and, universe willing, move forwards with my life in a completely new way. 

It was the compassionate element, being kind to myself on a moment by moment basis during the process whilst I was sitting in the waiting room to see the consultant, undergoing invasive radiotherapy and on the conveyor belt of treatment, that made such a difference to me. Of course the fear of dying was very clearly there to worry about, the effect it would have on the family and so on was there at the forefront of my mind. I just kept bringing compassion to what I was going through and the main way I was doing that was through self- soothing practices. 

Terms of Endearment

Something that was really helpful for me was thinking about myself with a term of endearment. So for instance the word “darling” in my family when I was growing up was quite a severe term, but my husband calls me sweetheart. So if I started to feel that distress was the arising, mindfulness, I was then able to say to myself something like “It’s okay sweetheart to be feeling distressed right now, it’s only natural, these sensations will pass with time, be gentle on yourself right now”. I know it feels really silly to start using terms of endearment but I would strongly recommend that you practice it over and over as the more you do something that starts off feeling awkward, the sooner it starts to become habitual and second nature.

Good Friends

I also think of some of my best friends standing next to me and what they would say when I had negative thoughts and feelings arising. Luckily for me my best friend in stuntwoman in South Africa so she is very straight talking and dynamic, though like marshmallow inside. If I started to sound like I was being self-deprecatory and blaming myself about having cancer she would always say to me something like, “be kind to yourself, have a bath or go for a nice walk or eat some chocolate”. There are lots of different things that she would say to me and her voice is like an earworm and goes round and round in my head. For instance if I am working late and I feel I’ve just got to write another email or there is something to do I will start to hear her voice coming in; “Karen it’s okay, time to leave work and you will be able to come back to it tomorrow”, in a very soothing tone. Her voice has now become my own.

Mirror Neurones

We have mirror neurons in the brain, empathising with what we see and hear from others, and when they’re stimulated a whole cascade of events is initiated throughout our body, heart and mind. So when we’re listening to a difficult story for instance we need to look after ourselves, soothe ourselves in times of difficulty, thereby stimulating the nervous system to calm down, having a positive effect on our hormones and mood. 

Oxytocin

Another way of doing this is through physical touch, such as stroking the hand or the arm, hugging or experiencing the sensations of the body as it moves. What we are doing is stimulating oxytocin which is a bonding hormone that really helps us to feel connected and kind to ourselves and other people. When I was speaking at a conference not so long ago, Mindfulness in Social Work, there was a neuroscientist in front of me and a service user was telling us her harrowing story. I noticed that the neuroscientist right the way through stroking her own arm so that she was soothing herself as she was listening to this story.

Treasure Trove

Some people use the word toolbox, I prefer to think of it as the treasure trove of these wonderful little practices, all the treasures that we have that we can really build upon and call our own. We have to be creative and try things out a few times and see if it’s really helpful, useful and supportive for us.

Teaching Self-Compassion to Clients

So, I started to work much more specifically with teaching compassion practices to clients and began to see the truly transformative effects when used in conjunction with mindfulness. I decided to have a look around to see if there are any other qualification courses that therapists, teachers and other professionals could go on to learn about Mindfulness and compassion. There weren’t any so I decided to develop one myself. I developed a qualification called “Integrating Mindfulness and Compassion in Professional Practice” and we are currently teaching several courses per year in London, Taunton, Cambridge and Bristol. I’m very happy to tell you more about this after this talk and you can come to our stand on B33.

So rather than talking to you the whole time about the wonders of self- compassion I would like to take you through a relatively short practice and allow you to experience it for yourself. Some of you this may well be very familiar and for others and this may be a first time you’ve ever done anything like this.

Practice– mindful posture, breathing, hand on heart, image of self, good things you do, why people love you, mindfulness- how does it feel in body, heart and mind. 

In particular I’d like to hear from anybody who felt a shift during the practice.

Thank you, clearly mindfulness is so beneficial for us but bringing in elements of compassion and kindness not only help us to develop the relationship we have with ourselves but also our interpersonal relationships, with those with whom we live, work and play. It helps us in connecting with other people- we are social animals and we are not meant to be isolated, living in one person households and working from home- withdrawing a little bit from society. By bringing that sense of mindfulness and compassion to all we do, what we think and feel about ourselves, our communication skills become kinder and more empowered, which is so beneficial. Of course it really helps to feed into our sense of health, a sense of what we’re doing here on this earth and our well-being, particularly when life throws us a curve ball.