Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction
Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) was pioneered by the Center for Mindfulness (CFM) at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. What started as the Stress Management Clinic in 1979 has grown into a successful professional teaching and research center that continues to offer MBSR for patients. For over 10 years the CFM has hosted an Annual International Scientific Conference. (See Resources page.)
Studies have shown the effectiveness of MBSR in many areas including education, psychological interventions, eating disorders, business and, of course, stress management.
Wherever the development of attentional skills, emotional regulation and self-awareness would be beneficial, MBSR is of value.
Saki Santorelli, the director of the CFM describes mindfulness in the following way.
“Mindfulness is a universal human capacity — a way of paying attention to the present moment unfolding of experience — that can be cultivated, sustained and integrated into everyday life through in-depth inquiry, fueled by the on-going discipline of meditation practice. Its central aim is the relief of suffering and the uncovering of our essential nature.”
~ Saki Santorelli, “Heal Thyself”
Mindfulness, and the practices that cultivate it, are best thought of as a 'way of being' rather than a collection of techniques or cognitive strategies. The practices that include mindfulness meditation, a secular form of meditation, are not difficult to understand. However, they do require both commitment and courage.
Becoming more mindful is an experiential journey, and a personal one. MBSR classes are designed to support this process of self-inquiry and the development of mindfulness in your life by providing a safe and supportive environment.