Mindful Monkey.


The Mindful Workplace

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Mindfulness is commonly associated with spiritual (and particularly Buddhist) traditions, but over the past 40 years these practices have been combined with modern psychological theory and developed into a secular training that has been the subject of extensive scientific research.

Mindfulness is about learning to focus and quiet the mind. This is done through simple guided exercises, attending to the breath, and observing what is happening in the mind and body, moment by moment. A kind of ‘mind gym’ which is about paying attention to what is happening right now with kindness and curiosity[i].

Mindfulness practice helps us to learn how to feel contentment in the present moment and manage our emotions more effectively. This has knock-on effects in lots of ways. Research shows that regular practice can bring about a wide range of benefits in physical and emotional health, and social functioning[ii].

A majority of GPs think that Mindfulness should be made widely available[iii]. The Mental Health Foundation – ‘Be Mindful’ Campaign pointed to extensive research pointing to wide ranging benefits[iv].

In 2015 the Mindfulness All-Party Parliamentary Group (MAPPG) published the ‘Mindful Nation UK’ report[v] .  It recognised mindfulness as a major contributor to the nation’s health and wellbeing: “better health and flourishing, improving mental health, and boosting productivity and creativity”. It went on to recommend mindfulness the key area of public policy: criminal justice, healthcare, education and the workplace[vi]. In 2016 the MAPPG launched a new publication: Building Mindfulness in the Workplace[vii] which looked specifically at the impacts of mindfulness at work[viii].

We spend a good proportion of our lives at work, yet for many people these hours are the least happy. Stress related problems at work account for a huge loss of productivity. Organisations are concerned about the increasing cost of employee stress and mental health problems, which account for 70 million sick days, more than half of the total every year

Success in most organisations relies on the very things that unhappiness and stress erode:  collaboration, creativity, cognitive flexibility and effective decision-making. Clearly the cognitive and emotional resources of the workforce will determine the health, resilience and future performance of our businesses and institutions. So forward thinking organisations see that enhancing employee health and wellbeing are just as important as skills training.

Mindfulness in a work context

A recent roundup of the scientific evidence for the potential benefits to business from mindfulness concludes that it can have an impact on many aspects of workplace functioning, including the 3 key areas: Wellbeing, Relationships and Performance[ix].

Wellbeing

A number of studies of workplace mindfulness courses have found positive effects on wellbeing and a reduction in stress and burnout[x]. There is strong evidence of Mindfulness having a positive impact on Anxiety and Depression[xi]. It has also been shown to reduce stress, anger, rumination, and physiological symptoms, while improving positive outlook, empathy, sense of cohesion, self-compassion and overall quality of life[xii].

Working relationships

Positive relationships at work lead to effective collaboration and increased productivity. Research into workplace mindfulness has pointed to improved relationships, collaboration and employee resilience[xiii].

Work Performance

Mindfulness has been shown to have a wide ranging impacts on cognitive functioning, workplace performance, leadership and decision making[xiv].

Introducing mindfulness into your workplace:

We have been delivering mindfulness training to individuals and groups around the country. Here are some of the ways we can help you to bring the benefits of mindfulness into your organisation:

  • A one day course which introduces staff to mindfulness practice
  • A longer mindfulness course which takes place over a number weekly sessions and aims to help participants deepen their practice and bring that into their working life
  • An ongoing program of mindfulness within the organisation
  • Training and developing champions within the organisation that can take mindfulness forward within their organisation

References

 

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A simple summer treat

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Chop:
Red onion
Vine tomatoes
Cucumber
Greek Kalamata Olives
Feta cheese

Sprinkle:
Salt
Oregano

Then add
Extra virgin olive oil
Red wine vinegar

Works fine just on its own, or you could have it with bread (or rye bread). The cost will depend on where you get the ingredients from. Remember to slow down when you make this; and then try to slow down to engage with the colours, smell, texture and taste.


Mindfulness & Somatic Based Approaches: An Experiential Workshop

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I will be facilitating a workshop at Leicester University on the 11th and 12th of April 2018.

This workshop is part of the course for the 2015 (Foundation Degree in Drug and Alcohol Counselling and Treatment) Distance Learning students. As there are a few spare spaces we are making it available to other students and graduates of the course (free of charge).

This will be a strongly experiential workshop. The first day will mainly focus on mindfulness practice interspersed with some discussion. The second day will build on this to develop skills in using mindfulness and embodied approaches in counselling (particpants need to attend both days).

Numbers are limited so you will need to book a place. If you would like to attend then please email Shehzad on sam99@le.ac.uk.


Mindfulness: 10 Week Course – Starting in Coalville

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There is growing evidence to suggest that mindfulness can bring about a wide range of improvements in physical, psychological and emotional well-being. Typically these benefits build up over a number of weeks of sustained practice.

The West Leicestershire NHS Clinical Commissioning Group have enabled us to deliver mindfulness courses around Leicestershire during 2016 and 2017. Our next journey into mindfulness will be starting on in September and will take place in Coalville at Marlene Reid Centre. Is this the right time for you to join us?

There will be a taster session on Sunday 14.1.18. This is an opportunity for you to come and find out more about the course before signing up.

The course will then run every Sunday 1:00 to 4:00 pm over a period of 10 weeks. The course is free, if you would like to come along or refer someone else then contact:

Jit Singh
Project Manager
Mindful Mentoring
Phone: 07939 199 549
Email: info@go-getta.org.uk

Venue: Marlene Reid Centre, 85 Belvoir Road, Coalville, LE67 3PH

Dates: Tater Session: 14.1.18 – 1:00 to 3:00 pm

Course Start Date: 21.1.18

A bit more about the course

If you want to learn how to cultivate mindfulness and are willing to do some daily practice between course meetings, then this course is for you. With a small group of people we will be guiding you through a set of mindfulness practices; starting with the breath through to mindfulness of body, thoughts emotions and self-acceptance. You will be given recordings and instructions on how to practice in between the meetings. What you learn on the course can become a resource that you can carry into the rest of your life.

The course is run in partnership with Go-Getta CIC, a social enterprise established in 2012 that works with communities to improve outcomes for young people and vulnerable adults.

This 10 week mindfulness course is combined with additional support to form Mindful Mentoring which aims to help people improve their emotional wellbeing, mental health and social functioning.

We look forward to seeing you there.


A child’s view…

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While out with my 9 year old boy, out of the blue he says: if I was president I would give all homeless children in the world somewhere to live, money, and good things they need…

I felt tears well up: how come a child can know this is right, while the grown ups in charge of things have lost sight of it…


Mindfulness: 10 Week Course – Starting in Loughborough

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There is growing evidence to suggest that mindfulness can bring about a wide range of improvements in physical, psychological and emotional well-being. Typically these benefits build up over a number of weeks of sustained practice.

The West Leicestershire NHS Clinical Commissioning Group have enabled us to deliver mindfulness courses around Leicestershire during 2016 and 2017. Our next journey into mindfulness will be starting on in September and will take place at Loughborough Leisure Centre. Is this the right time for you to join us?

There will be a taster session on Sunday 10.9.17. This is an opportunity for you to come and find out more about the course before signing up.

The course will then run every Sunday 1:00 to 4:00 pm over a period of 10 weeks. The course is free, if you would like to come along or refer someone else then contact:

Jit Singh
Project Manager
Mindful Mentoring
Phone: 07939 199 549
Email: info@go-getta.org.uk

Venue: Loughborough Leisure Centre, Browns Lane, Loughborough, LE11 3HE

Dates: Tater Session: 10.9.17 – 1:00 to 3:00 pm

Course Start Date: 17.9.17

A bit more about the course

If you want to explore mindfulness at a deeper level and are willing to do some daily practice between course meetings, then this course is for you. With a small group of people we will be guiding you through a set of mindfulness practices; starting with the breath through to cultivating self-acceptance. You will be given recordings and instructions on how to practice in between the meetings. What you learn on the course can become a resource that you can carry into the rest of your life.

The course is run in partnership with Go-Getta CIC, a social enterprise established in 2012 that works with communities to improve outcomes for young people and vulnerable adults.

This 10 week mindfulness course is combined with additional support to form Mindful Mentoring which aims to help people improve their emotional wellbeing, mental health and social functioning.

We look forward to seeing you there.


Can Magic Mushrooms Unlock Depression?

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This is well worth watching.

A clinical psychologist from Imperial College describes how Magic Mushrooms (Psilocybin), when used in a therapeutic setting, have been found to be a very effective treatment for depression. In this talk she draws on her experiences as working as a therapist on the groundbreaking Psilocybin for Depression study, and introduces us to some of the patients and their stories of transformation.


An Offering

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Those nice people at West Leicestershire NHS Clinical Commissioning Group have enabled us to deliver mindfulness courses around Leicestershire during 2016 and 2017.

Our next journey into mindfulness will be starting on 7.5.17. Is this the right time for you to join us? I recently facilitated a day of mindfulness and here is a recording of one of the practices. You can download and try out the practice if you like.

This 10 week mindfulness course is combined with additional support to form Mindful Mentoring which aims to help people improve their emotional wellbeing, mental health and social functioning. Each course will run every Sunday 1:00 to 4:00 pm over a period of 10 weeks.

It has been a pleasure to work with the people who have joined us for the three courses so far. The next course starts in Hinckley.

There will be a taster session on 30.4.17 so you can just pop in and find out more. The course is free, if you would like to refer someone you are working with (or want to refer yourself) then to book your place or get more information call or text:

Jit Singh
Project Manager
Mindful Mentoring

Phone: 07939 199 549
Email: info@go-getta.org.uk
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A new publication from the Mindfulness Initiative – The mindful workplace

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Building the Case for Mindfulness in the Workplace

Building the Case cover

One year after the Mindfulness All-Party Parliamentary Group released its seminal Mindful Nation UK report, the Mindfulness Initiative has launched a new publication: ‘Building the Case for Mindfulness in the Workplace’.

“The document is primarily intended as a resource for those developing a business case for mindfulness training within their own organisation. It provides an updated summary of the research evidence, narrative rationales addressing different organisational needs, case studies and a range of toolkits to help with programme planning, implementation and evaluation”

In my conversations with colleagues in services from eduction, health, drug & alcohol services and social care (and beyond) it seems that stress is pretty much universal. People love the work they do but not so much the pressure from targets and paperwork. So this report is one part of the discussion about how we can cope better.

Of course there is also the discussion to be had about organising things in a more streamlined way, and trusting practitioners’ commitment and knowledge rather then the current ‘top-down’ way of doing things. We can come back to that discussion at another time.

 

 


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