MINDFULNESS & MEDITATION: 8 WEEK COURSE
Between stimulus and response there is a space.
In that space is our power to choose our response.
In our response lies our growth and our freedom.
– Victor Frankl –
Today’s culture is obsessed with haste and input. Many realise this hamster-wheel of hasty input is in fact detrimental. Heightened mindfulness and meditation is a powerful way to change these deeply engrained mental and emotional habits. Fortune 500 titans, Pentagon leaders, Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, UK Members of Parliament, Bill Ford of Ford Motors, the late Steve Jobs of Apple and many others have practiced mindfulness. Ironically, mindfulness is about getting out of the mind. It’s about getting beyond “mental chatter” and could be called mindfreeness or mindlessness.
The training is a secular practice which disciplines the mind. It facilitates insight into our mental and emotional processes, enabling an awareness of choice as to how we think and how we act. It allows a disentangling from emotional volatility allowing one to discern what is important and useful and what is simply emotional reactivity. Until recently we believed our brains were fixed, but neuroscience has shown that our brains are more “plastic” than formerly believed. The neuro-architecture of our brain can change, which can in turn have a real effect on our health and even our personality.
This, of course is affecting the field of psychology, because it means we really can change people’s well-being. Harvard neuroscientist Lazar is one of many scientists who have shown through FMRi brain mapping that the structure and function of the brain actually changes during and after mindfulness training. Surprisingly, research shows that significant changes transpire within eight weeks of engaging in a mindfulness practice.
Mindfulness modalities are backed by decades of science showing that mindfulness improves:
HEALTH by boosting the immune system, decreasing pain & inflammation
HAPPINESS by decreasing stress, anxiety and depression & boosting positive emotions
SOCIAL LIFE by increasing compassion & feelings of connection, decreasing loneliness
SELF CONTROL by increasing ability to regulate emotions & to introspect
PRODUCTIVITY by improving memory, ability to focus and attend, multitask & creativity
CHANGES YOUR BRAIN (positively!) by increasing grey matter, increases thickness in areas associated with emotion regulation & ability to focus attention
WISDOM by giving perspective, as opposed to be being consumed by daily momentary drama
Kate Leinberger, PhD, a licensed psychologist at White Lotus, has specialised in mindfulness-based psychotherapy. Engaging in Life in a more mindful manner doesn’t happen in a hurry. For this reason, the course is an 8-week course, meeting for about 2 hours, once weekly with a 45 min one-on-one assessment and a half day ‘retreat’.
8 WEEK COURSE OUTLINE
- What’s the Big Hoo-ha about Mindfulness? What Exactly is it?
- Introduction to Meditation: Concentrative and Mindful
- The Healing Power of Awareness – in Everyday Life
- Science behind Mindfulness & Meditation
- Stilling the Mind Through the Body
- Stilling the Mind Through the Mind
- Judgement & Compassion: Why Judgement isn’t your Best Friend
- The Pull to Good & Push from Bad- Befriending ALL our Feelings
- Transitioning Mindfulness to Everyday Life
- Mindful Communication
- Compassion – the Final Ingredient
- The Challenge of Maintaining the Practice
Course fees are usually covered by medical aid.
Next course: Please contact Kate for next course start date and time
Venue: The White Lotus, 79 Kloof St, Gardens
Contact: KateLeinberger@gmail.com or 076 328 7130
Suggested readings to prepare for the course:
Wherever You Go, There You Are: John Kabat-Zinn
Full Catastrophe Living: John Kabat-Zinn
The Mindful Way Through Depression: (not strictly for depression) Williams, Teasdale, Segal and Kabat-Zinn
Sane New World: Ruby Wax
When Things Fall Apart: Pema Chodron (not necessarily for when things fall apart)
READ MORE ABOUT: DR KATE LEINBERGER