A journey to greater happiness, contentment and well-being
“I am calmer, more in touch with my emotions, thoughts and sensations. I can detach from situations that are disturbing me more easily and asses them better” Spring 2017
Over this 8 week mindfulness based cognitive therapy course (MBCT) learn mindfulness tools to help with depression, anxiety and worry, and how to feel happier and more confident.
Think of the mind as being like the ocean, sometimes calm, sometimes full of waves of conflicting thoughts and feelings. Mindfulness is like becoming a skilled surfer, knowing how to ride the waves of worry and anxiety. And if you should get knocked off-balance and fall, then you know how to recover quickly and return to surfing rather than be immersed in the waves.
Stress, worry and anxiety can all feel overwhelming in our hectic modern world. Over the 8 weeks you’ll be introduced to a series of meditations that build up into your own tool box of practices. Each participant finds different practices most relevant to them and by the end of the course have their own bespoke approach to mindfulness.
The course is based on the Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) programme developed in Oxford, but also has elements of compassion based practice as well. Over the 8-weeks, you will learn how mindfulness can help you to recognise when you become entangled in worries, self-criticism and ruminative thinking. As you recognise you automatic thinking and the story telling mind you’ll find a way to be more free, spontaneous and happy.
This course was very powerful and has been life changing. It has really helped me to focus on the ‘Here and now’ rather than getting caught up in ruminative thinking. I have a tendency to worry about the future and about events that have not yet occurred and this was making me feel very stressed. Applying the techniques and mindfulness strategies I learnt on the course I feel better able to cope and although I still feel anxious this tends to diminish more quickly.
Kensington Council 8 week course participant, 2016
The course consists of eight, two and a half hour sessions, and will include mindfulness meditation practices, gentle stretching and movement, group dialogue and discussion, home practice assignments, and guided audio practices. There is also a full-day retreat that will include a variety of soothing practices, a silent lunch and an afternoon of meditation and sharing.
You’ll receive a course workbook and guided meditations to download and keep. Weekly emails will offer guidance and support and remind you of the practices for that week.
Week 1: Autopilot. Starting to recognise how we get stuck in habitual ways of thinking and acting.
Week 2: Noticing joy. In this week we start a process of learning to notice and be fully alert to the pleasant experiences in our life. This counteracts the tendency for the survival system to focus on any possible dangers and overlook the enjoyable events. A daily gratitude log starts this week and then continues throughout the course.
Week 3: The meaning making machine of the mind. This week introduces elements from CBT, looking at how the mind is constantly seeking to create meaning, and over time can get lost in an autopilot of untrue ‘propaganda’ thoughts we have told ourselves so often we believe them to be true! As part of this we turn towards noticing difficult experiences this week, learning how to bring a curious attitude of kind investigation to it.
Week 4: Mindful movement. Introducing some simple movements for daily practice so that mindfulness can be felt in action as well in silent sitting. Identifying self-talk: the theme this week looks at how what we tell ourselves about situations may not be true and how to question this to have more freedom.
Week 5: Being at peace with difficulty. This week we bring a deeper investigation to how to be with difficult emotions and experiences. This is a key part of the course, leaning how to turn towards the difficult rather resist. It can open up a new sense of freedom for people when they know they can be with a difficulty rather than feel overwhelmed by it or need to fight it.
Week 6: The propaganda machine of the mind. Looking at how we give ourselves unhelpful messages, the inner critic and self-sabotage and how to change this and bring compassion and well wishing to ourselves.
Week 7: Rebalancing. Looking at how to bring more noshing activities into our day to leave us more energised and vital.
Week 8: Going forward. Looking at how to continue the practice after the course finishes.
“The course has really helped me gain more insights into thought patterns and how our mind works. Key for me are the use of practices such as Loving Kindness, nourishing activities, creating mind space with meditation and being open to our experiences” Richard, Spring, 2017
25th October, 1st, 8th, 15th, 22nd, 29th November and 6th and 13th December.
7.00 – 9.40 pm
Chadswell Healthy Living Centre
Nearest tube: Kings Cross. The venue is a ten minute walk from Kings Cross station.
£199 – concessions for unwaged, students and those in need
Booking confirmed on receipt of full payment
Please contact me if you have any enquiries about this course