mindful pain management

A Brief MBSR Course Description

Wed Sept. 28th 2016

Week 1. Remembering to step out of automatic pilot and experience the moment: Outcomes include: Learning how to interrupt your automatic pilot, slow down and pay attention to your immediate experience, use sensations as an anchor, move from 'doing; into 'being' mode and notice the flow of thoughts, emotions and sensations that arise moment to moment.

Week 2. Thoughts, emotions and sensations: what the mind does! Learning outcomes include: Differentiate between thoughts emotions and sensations, notice how they relate to reactions and behaviour, come back to the present moment over and over, practice patience and acceptance, recognise you're judging and interpreting mind and cultivate curiosity and kindness towards your experiences, no matter what they are.

Week 3. Mindfulness of breath and movement. Learning outcomes include: Engage the breath as an anchor to the present moment, recognise patterns of distress and suffering, use mindful movement to facilitate attention in the moment, cultivate sitting practice, use awareness of hearing and sounds, learn how to turn positive events into positive experiences.

Week 4. Staying present with emotions: another place to stand. Learning outcomes include: learning more about your stress reactivity, distress and experiential avoidance, explore emotion in an accepting, curious and creative way, use metaphor to work with emotions, recognise thoughts as being associated with strong emotions, and use the breath as a way of 'being' with strong and unpleasant emotions.

Week 5. Thoughts are not facts! Learning outcomes include: Realise that your thoughts are not facts, recognise patterns of unhelpful thinking, look 'at' thoughts not 'from' them, use metaphor to work with thoughts and interrupt ruminative thinking through bringing your attention to breath and body.

Week 6. Allowing and letting be. Learning outcomes include: expanding on what you learnt in classes 4 & 5, turn toward rather than away from distress and suffering, cultivate acceptance of all experience, even ones you don't want, use the body to work with distressing experiences.

All day silent retreat Saturday or Sunday, continuous practice in silence, usually held for 6 hours on Sunday

Week 7. Looking after myself; applying mindfulness. Learning outcomes include: practice without guidance, incorporate mindfulness into daily life, explore how you might simplify your life and reflect on how you might better look after yourself

Week 8. Making mindfulness part of my life. Learning outcomes include: exploring what we have already achieved, recognise mindfulness as a way of living, not a technique, look at processes for ongoing practice, explore choices for continuing to support practice in your life.

Each class includes enquiry, a chance to discuss what comes up for each individual in learning the techniques. This may often lead into some discussions on neuroscience and the research and evidence supporting mindfulness practices in a variety of contexts.

Home practice is set each week. Each class includes an opening meditation, discussion, guided meditation practices, enquiry about the practice, other mindful exercises and a closing sit with a weekly poem that 'speaks' to the theme of the weekly class. We allow 2.15 hours per class which varies depending on the group from 2 to 2.5 hours.

Nick is available for help and support both throughout the course and on an ongoing basis.