Making Friends with Yourself Mindful Self-Compassion for Teens and Young adults

tennis-shoes-banner“The privilege of the lifetime is being who you are” Joseph Campbell

Adolescence is a time of change, growth and often, struggle.  As a teen you might be confronted with various intense situations  such as heartbreak, anxiety, peer pressure, bullying. So, how can you manage stress, silence your inner critic, and embrace who you really are?

Making friends with Yourself is a course designed to help you to cope more effectively with the ongoing challenges of your daily life. It is an 8-week training program designed for people aged 13-19 to learn to manage difficult emotions  through their everyday life. In this course you will learn practices through fun activities based on mindfulness and self-compassion that will help you to navigate through emotional ups and downs of this life stage with greater ease.

Self-compassion can be learned by anyone. It’s a courageous attitude that allows us to embrace who we really are. And it’s easier than you think.

This 8 weeks program was adapted by Karen Bluth, PhD, and Lorraine Hobbs, M.A., from the adult Mindful Self-Compassion training (created by Kristin Neff, PhD and Christopher Germer, PhD) and has been endorsed by its authors. Primary scientific studies demonstrate 32% of reduction in depression for teens who practice self-compassion.

After participating in this workshop, you’ll be able to:

  • Practice self-compassion in daily life
  • Understand the empirically-supported benefits of self-compassion
  • Motivate yourself with kindness rather than criticism
  • Handle difficult emotions with greater ease
  • Transform challenging relationships, old and new
  • Practice the art of savoring and self-appreciation 

What To Expect

Program activities include meditation, short talks, art and experiential exercises, group discussion, and home practices. It is said that “love reveals everything unlike itself.” While some difficult emotions may arise when practicing self-compassion, MSC teachers are committed to providing a safe, supportive environment for this process to unfold, and to making the journey interesting and enjoyable for everyone.

MSC includes 8 weekly sessions of 1,5 hours each. In order to benefit the most from the program it is highly recommendable that participants plan to attend every session and practice mindfulness and self-compassion every day throughout the program.

Prerequisites

No previous experience with mindfulness or meditation is required to attend MFY. To insure safety, participants are asked to provide background information when they register for the program.

Instructors

Maja Wrzesien has a PhD in clinical psychology, and she is a researcher in the field of emotion regulation, mindfulness and compassion at the University of Amsterdam. She is a certified mindfulness trainer and she is affiliated with UvA Minds You, an academic clinical center. Maja is also teacher in training of mindfulness self-compassion, and mindfulness self-compassion for teens programs.

Julia Biesters, MSc., works as a health care practitioner at UvA minds, academic treatment clinic for parents and children UvA minds and the academic training center UvA minds You. As a mindfulness trainer, she is experienced in working with children, teenagers and parents.

Registration  (trainings only take place with sufficient sign-ups)

Numbers of sessions: 8 Time: 17.30 – 19.00 Dates: 31/05, 7/06, 14/06 , 21/06, 28/06,  5/07, 12/7, 19/7

Language: English

Location: UvAminds You, Banstraat 29, 1071 JW Amsterdam

Number of participants: Minimum 5 and maximum 15 participants

“The privilege of the lifetime is being who you are” Joseph Campbell

uvamindsyou_image

As our world becomes busier and more interconnected our life is filled with continues changes, stressful moments, and numerous challenges. So, how can we manage stress, silence our inner critic, and embrace who we really are?

I am very happy to announce that together with Prof. Susan Bögels we will be leading Mindful-Self Compassion course. Below you can find all the information.

Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) is an empirically-supported, 8-week, training program designed to cultivate the skill of self-compassion. Based on the groundbreaking research of Kristin Neff and the clinical expertise of Christopher Germer, MSC teaches core principles and practices that enable participants to respond to difficult moments in their lives with kindness, care and understanding.

Mindful Self-Compassion is a practice that offers us the opportunity to reply with kindness and understanding to our everyday challenges instead of criticizing ourselves; to respond instead of react; and to acknowledge the fact that we are not alone in our difficulties.

Self-compassion can be learned by anyone, even those who didn’t receive enough affection in childhood or who feel uncomfortable when they are good to themselves. It’s a courageous attitude that stands up to harm, including the harm that we unwittingly inflict on ourselves through self-criticism, self-isolation, or self-absorption. Self-compassion provides emotional strength and resilience, allowing us to admit our shortcomings, motivate ourselves with kindness, forgive ourselves when needed, relate wholeheartedly to others, and be more authentically ourselves.

Rapidly expanding research demonstrates that self-compassion is strongly associated with emotional wellbeing, less anxiety, depression and stress, maintenance of healthy habits such as diet and exercise, and satisfying personal relationships. And it’s easier than you think.

After participating in this course, you’ll be able to:

  • Practice self-compassion in daily life
  • Understand the empirically-supported benefits of self-compassion
  • Motivate yourself with kindness rather than criticism
  • Handle difficult emotions with greater ease
  • Transform challenging relationships, old and new
  • Manage caregiver fatigue
  • Practice the art of savoring and self-appreciation

Prerequisites

No previous experience with mindfulness or meditation is required to attend MSC. To insure safety, participants are asked to provide background information when they register for the program.

What To Expect

MSC includes 8 weekly sessions of 3 hours each, in addition to a 4-hour retreat. In order to benefit the most from the program it is highly recommendable that participants plan to attend every session and practice mindfulness and self-compassion at least 30 minutes per day throughout the program.

It is said that “love reveals everything unlike itself.” While some difficult emotions may arise when practicing self-compassion, MSC teachers are committed to providing a safe, supportive environment for this process to unfold, and to making the journey interesting and enjoyable for everyone.

MSC is primarily a compassion training program rather than mindfulness training like Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), although mindfulness is the foundation of self-compassion. MSC is also not psychotherapy insofar as the emphasis of MSC is on building emotional resources rather than addressing old wounds. Positive change occurs naturally as we develop the capacity to be with ourselves in a kinder, more compassionate way.

Program activities include meditation, short talks, experiential exercises, group discussion, and home practices. MSC is a workshop rather than a retreat. The goal is for participants to directly experience self-compassion and learn practices that evoke self-compassion in daily life.

Instructors

Prof. Dr. Susan Bögels is a clinical psychologist and psychotherapist, specialized in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy for children and their families, and mindfulness trainer. She works as professor in developmental psychopatholoy at the University of Amsterdam and is the director of the academic treatment clinic for parents and children UvA minds and the academic training center UvA minds You in Amsterdam. Her main research themes are the intergenerational transmission of psychopathology and mindfulness for parents and children.

Dr Maja Wrzesien has a PhD in clinical psychology, and she is a researcher in the field of emotion regulation, mindfulness and compassion at the University of Amsterdam. She is a certified mindfulness trainer affiliated with UvA Minds You, an academic clinic center, and is teacher in training of mindfulness self-compassion, and mindfulness self-compassion for teens programs.

Registration  (trainings only take place with sufficient sign-ups)

Numbers of sessions: 8 (24 hours) + voluntary 4 hours mini silent retreat  Dates: 17/05, 24/05,  31/05, 7/06, 14/06, 21/06, 28/06,  5/07,  30/06 (silent day 2-6pm) Time: 9.30 –  12.30

For more information please contact me: m.e.wrzesien@uva.nl

 

 

 

 

Peaceful Mind Summer School at University of Amsterdam

Maja_Mindfulness Flyer 2018 (2)

 

As an academic director I am very happy to invite you to apply for the 3-week UvA Summer School: “Peaceful Mind: Mindfulness and Compassion-Based Interventions”. This summer programme provides an overview on the topic of emotion regulation and contemplative practices such as mindfulness- and compassion-based interventions, as a part of H2020 Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions founded project (Peaceful Mind: 656333).

For more details: uva.nl/summer-mindfulness or summer-info-gsss@uva.nl

 

 

 

Peaceful Mind project has been selected as the best success story for MSCA Individual Fellowship

video_Netformobility

 

Net4Mobility (an international network of National Contact Points (NCPs) of the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) selected Peaceful Mind project as the best success story for MSCA Individual Fellowship. They produced a video to demonstrate the impact of this great grant on my research career and showcase the project.

Below you can find the results of their nice work!

Net4mobility success story

 

We are back in NEMO Science Live!

Today it has been 1 week since we started our new data collection in NEMO, and we already have 100 participants. This time we evaluate the effectiveness of different emotion regulation strategies on sadness with children between 9-14 years old.

Thank you to all the participants and NEMO Science Live for making our research alive, and  to the great research team who  is doing an awesome job!

Atlas of Emotions

atlasofemotions-1-1

Dr. Paul Ekman, best known for his research of nonverbal behavior such as gestures and facial expressions, together with his daughter Dr. Eve Ekman created an Atlas of Emotions: an online  interactive emotion education tool. The idea of the project started after Dr. Ekman and the Dalai Lama conversed about the origins of emotions. Dalai Lama asked whether Dr. Ekman could create a map of the emotions, in order to provide a deeper understanding of our emotions.

The introductory page present the Atlas of Emotions as “a visual tool to build your emotion vocabulary. The goal is to increase choice in what we become emotional about and how we respond.” Have a look and learn a little bit more about yourself! I did.

http://www.atlasofemotions.com/

 

 

 

Our last day in NEMO!

Today it is our last day in NEMO. It was an exiting and intensive adventure! Our experiment was visited by 183 children and their parents. Many thanks to them!

Special thanks to the NEMO team, managed by Diana and Lucas, as well as Great Team of Students who made this data collection possible: Annebelle, Astrid, Laura, Maud, Renske, Yara. Ladies- you are the best!

We hope to see the results published by the end of this year, but you can always check on NEMO Science live website if there is some more news: https://www.sciencelive.nl/

We are coming back to NEMO in August 2017 for another 2 weeks to test some new hypothesis on emotion regulation in children. If you are a student and would like to join the adventure for a short internship just let me know!

 

img_1474