Tag Archives: MISPtweets

Mindfulness in London – Opportunities to enhance well-being and develop skills to become more resilient to stress

Dr CarelseHappy New Year! Welcome to 2015 and the invitation to have a fresh start and focus on making life more meaningful to us as individuals, cherishing the time left in our lives.  Mindfulness is a way to take stock of and simple ‘be’ with where we are right here and now, moment by moment.   Research shows that it can enhance health, well-being and resilience to stress. In addition, it can help us become more aligned with longer term goals and aspirations. Here are some opportunities to learn more about Mindfulness and Yoga in London.

On Monday 12 January, there is a Mindful Evening in Walthamstow – aka the Walthamstow Mindfulness Meet Up.  It is an opportunity for people to meet up and practice mindfulness together.  This is for anyone interested, from complete beginners to those who would like a bit of a refresher or boost to their own practice.

The British Wheel of Yoga has the largest yoga membership in the UK.  It is committed to promoting a greater understanding of yoga and its safe practice through experience, study and training.

Dr Carelse is a qualified British Wheel of Yoga teacher.

On 14 January, the “Yoga with Mindfulness” classes begin at the Corporation of London Community Education Centre.  This week, and next the centre will be taking bookings.  The classes will be run from 6pm to 7:30pm.

The following week, on 19th January, the next Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction Course will be starting.  There has been a really positive response and there are only a few places left.

Overall the interest in mindfulness has been increasing, including in schools.  On 20th January, I will be running a 3-hour mindfulness session in a primary school to about 60 members of staff.  This is a shorter, more accessible version of the Introduction to Mindfulness Day Workshop that is part of the series of mindfulness training opprotunities that are available for those in educational settings.

.b Foundations was developed by the Mindfulness in Schools Project (MiSP).

.b Foundations was developed by the Mindfulness in Schools Project (MiSP).

On 26th January I will be presenting on mindfulness at a staff meeting in a secondary school, introducing further training that will be available at the school the following month.

Overall, 2015 is another year of opportunities to share this valuable practice with you and others.  By regularly practicing, we can support ourselves to sustain a level of equanimity through the inevitable changes that life brings.

For more information, including about training in mindfulness for schools, contact me.

Warm wishes, Bernadette

Paws .b: New mindfulness course for primary schools

Today, I met up with a group of teachers who had trained to run Paws .b course, a new mindfulness course for pupils in primary schools.  In August this year, we had met in Bangor, Wales for 3 days of training to deliver this programme.  Following a pilot programme in April, this was the first time the updated training programme had been delivered.

Paws .b is a well structured and evidence based mindfulness programme for pupils in primary schools.

Paws .b is a well structured and evidence based mindfulness programme for pupils in primary schools.

Paws .b course was developed by mindfulness teachers who also had experience teaching in schools, as part of the Mindfulness in Schools Project, a “non-profit organisation whose aim is to encourage, support and research the teaching of secular mindfulness in schools”.  The training involved going through the Paws .b programme session by session, giving us a clear picture of the structure and the thinking behind the course.  One thing that I really appreciate is its in-built flexibility: it may be delivered as either 6 one-hour sessions or as 12 half-hour ones.

Of all the mindfulness exercises we learnt my favourite was the “petal practice”.  Here, you move the fingers of one hand or both hands in time with the breath.  This involves bringing the fingertips of each hand together while breathing in and opening up the palm of the hand, like an opening flower, while breathing out.  I found it quickly and easily anchored the attention on the breath and sustained it there.  From here, the wandering mind of automatic thinking and reactivity could be gently settled and stilled and a calm peacefulness enabled to emerge.

Over the three days, there were ample opportunities to get to know each other and share our backgrounds into mindfulness.  All of us had done an 8-week mindfulness training programme, such as Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction (MBSR), and had an established mindfulness practice; this was the main prerequisite for the training.  I also learnt that despite coming from a variety of backgrounds, including schools, clinical, therapeutic and business settings, we also shared a confidence in mindfulness as a way to promoted mental health and well-being and desire to share this with children.

Since the training, many have started running the Paws .b course in schools across the country and beyond.  Today was wonderful in terms of being able to catch up  in a small group, and share about our experiences of doing so.

For more information on Paws .b by Holistic Education, click here.