Students will learn stress reduction skills which are related to mindfulness based stress reduction methods. These skills are useful as in medical practice as in everyday life. They will learn about the physiological and psychological basics of stress and and its effect on mental and physical health. The practices could improve the coping skills, help to prevent burnout.
The course methodology based on experimental learning accordingly during the semester daily home practice is recommended (30-40 min). The mark is based on the completed the tasks on chosen topics (presentation, home assignment) and the participation of the seminars. Students are expected to attend regularly the course.
John Teasdale, Mark Williams, and Zindel V. Segal (2014): The Mindful Way Workbook. The Guilford press. New York, London.
In the beginning of the semester the seminars will be 2,5 teaching hours per session. One session (session 7) will be 5 teaching hours. The program based on the materials of Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT).
Session 1 Awareness and Automatic Pilot. Relationship between attention and experience. Practice in purposfully moving attention round the body, eating meditation. Mindfulness in medical practice, preventing stress and burnout.
Session 2: Thoughts and feelings. Situation, interpretation, emotions , body sensations, behaviour (thoughts are not facts) – Cognitive model. Focus on pleasant experiences and journal them.
Session 3: Gathering the scattered mind and mindfulness. Becoming familiar with the behaviour of the mind. Mindful movement enhances awareness of the body. Focus on unpleasant experiences. Sitting with breath and body, responding ot painful sensations or mindful movements. 3 minute breathing space.
Session 4: Recognising aversion. The mind is most scattered when trying to cling to some things and avoid others. Mindfulness offers a way to stay present by providing another place from which to view things. Getting to know the territory of depression, stress and burnout. Exercises: Sitting with breath, body, sounds, thoughts, choiceless awareness
Session 5: Allowing/letting be even negative experience. Relating differently involve bringing to experience a sense of allowing it to be as it is, without judging it or trying to made it different or avoid it. Such an attitude of acceptance is a major part of taking care of oneself and seeing clearly what if anythingm needs to change. Exercises: Sitting with breath, body, difficulty.
Session 6: Thoughts are not facts. Thoughts are often born out of context and mood. Recognising that the same patterns of thought recur again and again can help us to stand back from our thoughts, without necesarily having to question them or seek alternatives.
Session 7: Deepening the practice. Exercises: Sitting with breath, body, difficulty sounds, thoughts and emotions, difficulty, choiceless awareness, body scan, mindful walking.
Session 8: How can I best take care of Myself? Specific things can be done when stress, anxiety, depression threatens. Participants in the classes can help each other to plan how the best to respond to the signs. Exercises: Activity and mood (nourishing vs. depleting activities)
Session 9: Maintaining and extending new learning. Good intentions can be strengthened by linking the practice with + reasons for taking care of oneself. Exercises: What are the things in your life that you most value, that the practice could help you with? Closing sitting (wishing on another well, loving kindness meditation).