What is Mindfulness?
Mindfulness, in short, is a meditation-based life practice which has helped countless people to learn the skills they need either to find a clearer focus and stillness in the midst of a busy life or to cope creatively with anxiety, stress, depression and chronic pain. Described as “the awareness that arises from paying attention, on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally” (Jon Kabat-Zinn), mindfulness is a way of seeing more clearly what is happening in our lives which in turn can give us more choice about how we live.
WEDNESDAY 27TH APRIL 2022
8 WEEK ON-LINE COURSE
MINDFULNESS BASED COGNITIVE THERAPY FOR LIFE (MBCT-L)
Offering skills both to meet the difficulties & stresses of life
& also flourish!
The course will be taught by Susie and Tim Stead
and will be run on Wednesday mornings
10am to 12.15 + one Saturday, 11th June
Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy Course for Life (MBCT-L),
an evidence-based course, developed by the Oxford Mindfulness Centre in conjunction with Oxford University.
COST: Sliding Scale of £120 to £220
What is Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy for Life?
Mindfulness based cognitive therapy (MBCT), a well-researched and evidence-based approach, was originally developed to address recurrent depression and benefits have also been found in other areas including anxiety, stress and chronic pain. Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy for Life (sometimes referred to as MBCT-L) builds on MBCT, including an understanding of suffering but additionally designed to cultivate mindful awareness of our body, emotions and mind so that we can live our lives with a greater sense of wellbeing, kindness and resilience. It is an evidence-based course, developed in the light of research at Oxford University and other leading research centres.
It has two main intentions: to offer you skills to meet life’s challenges and difficulties, both internal and external; and also skills to develop more awareness and appreciation of the pleasant moments in life that we can often overlook. In other words, to respond more skilfully to all of life’s inevitable ups and downs.
This course is not being offered as a treatment for any specific physical or psychological conditions. If you have concerns about your mental or physical health then please consult your doctor, psychologist or health care professional first (whichever is appropriate), before deciding on whether to embark on a mindfulness course.
The course takes the form of 8 weekly group sessions + a day of practice. I will introduce different meditations and we will reflect on our experience of them together. I will also lead cognitive exercises/reflections and there will be time in break-out rooms to share experiences of meditation practice during the week. Audio meditations will be available for you to listen to during the week. The sessions are each 2 ¼ hours long ( 2 ½ hours for the first session) . Each session builds on the previous one. The course gives us the skills to bring Mindfulness into our daily lives and to see the difference this can make to our everyday experience. The approach is not one of ‘group therapy’ so much as simply learning a new skill in a group setting.
Together with the 8 weekly sessions there will also be an all-day session part way through the course to give us time to spend a bit longer practising together (This will run from 10am to 3pm).
To get the most out of the course it is important that you are able to attend all eight sessions plus the Saturday. Of course, unexpected events happen but it is best not to miss more than 1 or at most 2 sessions. Secondly it is important that you commit to putting time aside for daily mindfulness practice during the course. The suggestion is 30 to 40 mins/day but you can choose shorter practices.
Venue, Times and Dates:
Day & Time: Wednesday mornings, 10am to 12.15pm (12.30 on the first session)
Dates: 27th April, 4th, 11th, 18th, 25th May, 1st, 8th, 15th June
All day on Saturday 11th June to run from 10am to 3pm
Susie Stead is a freelance mindfulness teacher, trained and competency assessed by the Oxford Mindfulness Centre and listed as a teacher on their website. She is a member of BAMBA (British Association of Mindfulness Based Approaches) https://bamba.org.uk/
Susie co-runs a weekly mindfulness meditation drop-in at present on-line. www.susiestead.com/mindfu
Tim Stead is a freelance mindfulness teacher, trained and competency assessed by the Oxford Mindfulness Centre. He was an associate and taught for several years at the Oxford Mindfulness Centre and he now runs 8-week courses, residential retreats and quiet days
SUSIE STEAD BACKGROUND, TRAINING AND COURSES ETC
I’m trained and competency assessed by the Oxford Mindfulness Centre and am one of their teachers (https://www.oxfordmindfulness.org/people/page/6/)
I’m regulated by the British Association of Mindfulness-based Approaches website, (https://bamba.org.uk/)
In 2011, I read Jon Kabat Zinn’s comment that mindfulness was “falling awake”. I decided I wanted to fall awake to the rest of my life however it panned out. After that I discovered that mindfulness is also about compassion and non-judgement and these two elements have transformed my life.
I began my mindfulness practice in November 2011 when I attended an 8 week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Course (MBSR) with Kate Carne. (http://mindfulnessworks.co.uk). I continued the practice and then began to attend a local Tuesday drop-in set up and run by Tim Stead. I joined the team to support this and eventually began to lead mindfulness practices and half-day retreats. Since April 2019 I have taken over as the lead for the drop-in and retreats.
MBCT TEACHER TRAINING – In 2017 I completed the Foundation Training for teaching Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) at the Oxford Mindfulness Centre (OMC). OMC certificate
COMPETENCY ASSESSMENT – In December 2019, I passed a rigorous assessment for teaching MBCT at the Oxford Mindfulness Centre.
I have now taught a number of courses and I follow the mindfulness good practice guidelines, which include a regular personal meditation practice, supervision and annual silent retreats.
On-going professional development
I have attended a number of masterclasses at the Oxord Mindfulness Centre:
Training to teach Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy for Life
Training to teach in a Non-Clinical Setting: Finding Peace Course
Training to teach Mindfulness and Creativity
Masterclasses in ‘Diversity’ and ‘Enquiry’.
I have completed on-line training in Trauma Sensitive Mindfulness with David Treleaven (2021)
Other Relevant Training
CBT Training – Autumn 2018 – I completed an ‘Introduction to CBT’ course run by the Oxford Cognitive Therapy Centre which consists of 8 full days of training.
MHFA Training – October 2017 – I completed a 2 day Mental Health First Aid Course for Adults at Restore in Cowley, Oxford
8 WEEK COURSES THAT I TEACH
I teach the 8-week course in Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT)
Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy for Life (MBCTL)
Finding Peace in a Frantic World (based on the book by Mark Williams and Danny Penman)
I have been teaching Oxford Student Mindfulness Courses (Based on the Finding Peace book mentioned above) via the Oxford Mindfulnes Centre since the beginning of 2020.
I’ve also done training in teaching Mindfulness for Creativity based on the book by Danny Penman.
Finally, I’m interested in combining Forum theatre with mindfulness so do get in touch if you like the sound of this 🙂
If you’d like me to come and run a course in your area, please get in touch.
QUOTES FROM PARTICIPANTS OF COURSES
“I have found the course hugely beneficial in helping me increase my self-awareness and self-compassion.” (participant from Sparsholt MBCT course)
“It has been a lovely ‘safe’ environment in which to learn about mindfulness – the benefits of which I hope to maintain!” (participant from Sparsholt MBCT course)
I also run half-day mindfulness mornings in Oxford and on-line, which offer a rare opportunity for some quiet reflection and a chance to either re-start or deepen your mindfulness practice
They are suitable for anyone who has completed a mindfulness course or is familiar with meditation. I am happy to run one in your area if you’d like to get in touch.
STRUCTURE: The morning consists of a mix of guided meditations including an opportunity for mindful eating & drinking of coffee/tea, cake/fruit and a chance to go outside if wished. A gentle silence is kept by participants and there is an invitation to share reflections at the end of the morning.