Mindful self-compassion training

Our evolved brain is more concerned with our safety and obtaining resources than with our happiness. This can lead to a narrowing of our perception. For example, if while shopping you are received well in five shops, but the sales assistant in the sixth shop is unpleasant, what will you remember about your shopping trip later that evening, the five pleasant sales assistants or the unpleasant one?

Rick Hanson, an eminent neuropsychologist, describes how this negativity bias of the brain makes it like Velcro for bad experience and Teflon for good experience. Furthermore this negativity can often be seen in our attitudes of self-criticism, which we believe leads to our improved performance. However a harsh self-critical inner voice can undermine our self-confidence and self-esteem and lead to feelings of guilt and shame that chip away at our mental wellbeing.

Combined with mindfulness training, experiential training in the inner positive mental states of loving kindness, compassion, and gratitude gives us greater mental flexibility and enables us to meet three of our essential needs, for safety, satisfaction, and connection, leading to more contentment and a blooming of our mental wellbeing.

Mindful self-compassion (MSC ) is an experiential eight week training programme based on the groundbreaking research of Kristin Neff and the clinical expertise of Christopher Germer. It supports the development of courageous attitudes enabling us to stand up to harm, even the harm we inflict unwittingly on ourselves, through self-criticism, self-isolation, or self-absorption. MSC training teaches core skills that empower participants to respond to life’s difficult moments, with kindness, care, and understanding. MSC enhances abilities to:

Practice self-compassion in your daily life.

Motivate yourself with kindness rather than criticism.

Handle difficult emotions with greater ease.

Transform challenging relationships, old and new.

Manage caregiver fatigue.

Practice the art of savouring and self-appreciation.

Course facilitator Martin Delaney, who holds an MSc in mindfulness compassion and insight studies, completed training to teach this course under the direction of Kristin Neff and Christopher Germer, at the University of California San Diego.

For those who wish to learn more, an Introduction to Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC ) evening will take place on Tuesday, February 27, at 7pm in the Clayton Hotel Galway. Cost is €5.

An eight week Mindful Self-Compassion course starts Tuesday, March 6, at 7pm in the Clayton Hotel, Galway. Numbers are limited. For further details contact [email protected], phone 083 3930654, see cbtinterpretations.com, or find Blooming Mental Wellbeing on Facebook.

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