Making Mindfulness a Way of Life: Taking Mindful Awareness to Mindful Action
Do you find your capacity to actually be mindful comes in fleeting moments and is difficult to sustain throughout the day? This workshop is about taking mindful awareness to mindful action with intentional, evidenced-based “mindful moment” practices drawn from decades of research in mindfulness, positive psychology, and neuroscience. Taking brief mindful breaks is restorative in many ways, including reducing your stress level, boosting your mood, and keeping you more alert and focused.
Mindful moments can serve your fluctuating needs with practices that are stress-relieving, tension-releasing, relaxing, calming, energizing, self-soothing, or mood-lifting as the moment commands. Mindful moments can be taken on your own behalf or in support of others. In this workshop you’ll learn many mindful moment practices to weave mindfulness into your daily life to help you stay balanced despite the day’s challenges. The path of mindful moments interspersed throughout your day can be a way to not only enhance mindfulness, but also reduce stress and negativity, sustain optimism and happiness, promote compassion and self-compassion, and cultivate kindness and gratitude.
How to Build Up Your Defenses Against Stress
When the demands of life pile up, it can seem like life is whirling out of control. This workshop is about acquiring the tools and strategies you need to limit your stress exposure so you can more effectively cope and keep the stress response from taking over.
In this workshop you’ll learn how to build up defenses against stress and use research-based stress busters that can take less than a . Because the stress response unfolds quickly you need to be an “early responder” to temper minuteyour initial response before it takes on a life of its own.
You’ll learn practices for becoming stress hardy, minimizing conditions that induce stress, curbing stress-producing self-talk, recognizing emotional triggers, and maintaining work-life balance. These practices will help you prevent a situation from escalating and keep your cool in the heat of the moment.
Learning to Cultivate Self-Compassion
Self-compassion comes first, then you can radiate it to others. In this workshop you’ll learn to be a compassionate ally to yourself and cultivate an inner friend who can temper your self-criticism. We all have an innate compassionate instinct for caring for others, but we have to deliberately practice compassion for ourselves. The research indicates that those who nurture themselves with self-compassion have lower levels of stress, anxiety, and depression, as well as greater happiness, optimism, and life satisfaction.
Compassion for yourself needs to be cultivated and it requires intentional practices. Treating yourself compassionately means making time for daily acts of self-care. This workshop will teach you how to build self-compassion practices into your daily routines, both at home and at work. You’ll learn ways to squelch the berating inner voice of the critical evaluator and replace it with the inner voice of the accepting advocate.
Workshops for Teachers
Mindful Moments in My Classroom
Teachers will learn brief, research-based practices drawn from decades of research in mindfulness, positive psychology, and neuroscience from my latest book, A Daily Dose of Mindful Moments: Applying the Science of Mindfulness and Happiness. Mindful moments can be easily tailored to classroom settings, incorporating them into routine parts of the school day, such as the beginning or end of the day, before or after recess or lunch, or transitions between classes or subjects, as well as pausing for mindful moments to meet students’ fluctuating needs throughout the day.
Mindful moment practices can be stress-relieving, tension-releasing, relaxing, calming, energizing, self-soothing, or mood-lifting as the moment commands. Teachers will come away from this interactive workshop with a repertoire of mindful moments for weaving mindful practices into classroom life and integrating mindfulness and social-emotional learning (SEL) to promote mindful, restorative, and compassionate actions. Pausing for brief mindful breaks sprinkled throughout the day can be a way to not only cultivate mindfulness, but also reduce stress and negativity, sustain a positive outlook, and nurture self-compassion. Mindful moments can also foster kind, generous, and thoughtful actions when targeted for the benefit of others. A daily stream of mindful moments can keep students and teachers from getting stressed out or feeling overwhelmed.
Building Up Defenses Against Stress
Job-related stress is higher among teachers than any other professionals. Teachers need to develop tools and skills to become stress hardy to limit their stress exposure. Because the stress response unfolds quickly teachers have to be proactive in noticing thoughts, judgments, and bodily signs and take action at the onset of stress to keep daily stress from escalating. When stress strikes, the strategies teachers have, or develop, for managing stress will determine how effectively they’ll be able to cope and keep their cool in the heat of the moment.
In this workshop teachers will learn research-based instant stress busters that can take less than a minute. They will be guided through personal exercises to build up defenses against stress using strategies to cultivate mindfulness, curb self-defeating self-talk, temper their inner critic, recognize emotional triggers, practice self-compassion, activate peer support, and maintain work-life balance.
How to Cultivate Self-Compassion
For teachers, self-compassion needs to come first, then they can radiate it to their students. This workshop is about helping teachers make preserving their well-being a high priority by learning to be compassionate allies to themselves and temper their inner critic. When teachers nurture themselves with self-compassion, they are better able to sooth their negative emotions to enhance their capacity to stay emotionally balanced in challenging situations. Research shows practicing self-compassion leads to lower levels of stress, anxiety, and depression, as well as greater happiness, optimism, and life satisfaction.
We all have an innate compassionate instinct for caring for others, but we have to deliberately cultivate compassion for ourselves with intentional practices. In this workshop teachers will learn ways to treat themselves compassionately and build simple acts of self-care into their daily routines, both at home and at school.