What is Mindfulness2019-06-05T13:44:12+01:00

What is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is learning to meet the present moment as it is and respond wisely to whatever is happening.  Much of our lives are spent thinking and behaving automatically in habitual ways. This leaves very little room to grow, learn or flourish as human beings.

MBSR and MBCT: Scientifically and clinically proven Mindfulness Based Interventions with an extensive and well documented evidence base. 

There are so many mindfulness courses being offered these days, it can be confusing. All MTAI members have completed appropriate training as MBSR or MBCT teachers and have agreed to be bound by the professional standards and ethical standards of our organization, so they are properly qualified mindfulness teachers.

In addition, some of our members have completed further training and specialize in areas such as Mindfulness and Compassion, Mindfulness in Education, Mindfulness in Healthcare, Mindfulness in the Workplace and various other specialized areas. If you are unsure about which type of course is right for you, feel free to contact one our members who will be happy to help. You can also learn more about the different types of courses in the summary below.

Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR)

MBSR is an eight-week program which was developed by Jon Kabat Zinn in 1979 while he was working as a molecular scientist.

Originally developed to help patients dealing with chronic pain it has since been shown to have lasting benefits for a wide range of participants and is particularly helpful for people dealing with stress and anxiety. The course gives a practical and experiential introduction to a range of mindfulness practices. Each MBSR class is two and half hours in length and includes a days retreat.

Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT)

MBCT was developed as an intervention to help people who suffer from recurring depression by Professor Williams, Teasdale and Segal. They developed and researched a programme, that could be undertaken while relatively well, to help prevent sliding into relapse of depression. It is an adaptation of MBSR. Participants learn to recognise specific patterns of negative thinking that people with depression are vulnerable to, and over the 8 weeks develop resilience and confidence in their ability to respond to them skilfully.

MBCT is based on the premise that recurrence of depression is more likely when patterns of negative thinking are triggered by transient low moods encountered by most of us in our daily lives.

All MTAI members have trained in MBSR and/or MBCT. In addition some of our members have completed further training and specialize in areas such as Mindfulness and Compassion, Mindfulness in Education, Mindfulness in Healthcare and Mindfulness in the Workplace.

Other Mindfulness Based Approaches

Mindfulness and Compassion

Mindfulness-Based Compassionate Living (MBCL) and Mindful Self Compassion (MSC) are two training programmes which combine the skills of mindfulness and self-compassion, providing a powerful tool for emotional resilience. Mindfulness teaches us to be more aware of life as it unfolds from moment to moment, but these moments can bring us difficulty, pain or suffering, a challenge we all face at some time in our lives.

The MBCL and MSC programmes offer practical guidance on cultivating a mindful, kind and compassionate relationship with our inner life.

Mindfulness in Education

A number of mindfulness based interventions have been developed and tested for delivery in primary and secondary schools as well as third level institutions.  Some of the most common are Paws b (for 7-11 year olds) or .b (for 11 to 18 year olds) or the .b Foundations that focuses on mindfulness delivery to adults in schools.

Mindfulness in Healthcare

Many of our members are qualified healthcare professionals. Courses and workshops are delivered in hospitals and healthcare facilities for patients and also for the workers and carers who can be susceptible to burn out. Some of our members are also qualified therapists and specialise in using a mindfulness based approach with their individual clients.

Mindfulness in the Workplace

There is a growing need for mindfulness training in the workplace. Many employers and companies now recognise the benefits of offering courses and workshops for staff. The benefits for staff include reduced stress, increased ability to concentrate and focus and improved creativity. The organisation in turn benefits from a healthier, happier workforce. Some of our members have experience delivering courses and workshops for a range of organisations.