Mindful Self-Compassion for Healthcare, a 6-week course.
I don't have any current offerings of this course right now through my website. If you want to get on my email list to hear about upcoming courses that I offer, you can do so here. For testimonials about this course, check out my For Organizations page and scroll down a bit.
This course is drawn from the evidence-based Mindful Self-Compassion program developed by the psychologists Kristin Neff at University of Texas, Austin and Chris Germer at Harvard Medical School. There are over 3000 peer-reviewed publications exploring the role of self-compassion in well-being, and research shows that self-compassion skills can be of particular benefit to healthcare professionals, allowing them to experience greater satisfaction in their caregiving roles, less stress, and more emotional resilience. And everything in this class can also be easily adapted to helping patients, family and friends.
Of course, no training can fix our broken healthcare system and all the obstacles it creates when trying to treat patients. But it really is possible to change how you are affected by that system. This is because we are all caring and compassionate people, but for some reason many of us do not include ourselves in that circle of care—we tend to be unnecessarily harsh with ourselves. And that has consequences. We can’t be all we want to be for those around us, and we don’t even have our own backs when things get difficult. There is something fundamentally empowering when you re-learn how to deeply appreciate and care for yourself, and it isn’t hard to do.
This course consists of 6 weekly 1-hour sessions, although I’m happy to stay longer to discuss issues that come up. Each session focuses on specific self-care practices for different situations. There will be discussions in both small groups and with the entire group, along with teachings on various topics and several experiential exercises and practices each session. Here is a breakdown of each class:
Session 1: Exploring what self-compassion is and seeing how it does or does not show up for us, and then looking at ways to cultivate it even in the middle of difficulties. This session is a nice standalone offering if you want to check out the idea of self-compassion without committing to the entire course.
Session 2: Seeing how mindfulness plays a crucial role, and how it can be brought into your day even if you barely have time to go to the bathroom. We'll also look at common obstacles and misgivings that surround self-compassion, such as the perception that it is "weak" or leads to being self-indulgent.
Session 3: Investigating caregiver fatigue and burnout, and how self-compassion can remind us to offer care to ourselves as we attend to the needs of others, even as we are immersed in providing that care.
Session 4: Looking at ways to skillfully work with the inner critic so we can still motivate ourselves to do our best without that needlessly abusive voice that drains energy and resilience---often without our realizing it.
Session 5: Using self-compassion to work with difficult emotions, including one of the most valuable practices in the series.
Session 6: Exploring the importance of our core values in dealing with hard times, and how self-compassion can help us live more in alignment with those values. We will also look at the resources available to maintain a self-compassion practice going forward.
If you just want to get a taste of how self-compassion works, you are welcome to just do the first class—it provides a nice experiential foundation. You are also welcome to attend the other sessions as you are able; I’ll be sending out links that go over what we cover in each class so you can review each session on your own. This class is very informal, so if you register you’ll get the additional info whether you can attend or not. You can register here or use the button below.
Photo by Simon Berger on Unsplash