‘Mindfulness’ refers to a capacity we all have to bring present-moment awareness to our everyday experience with the attitudes of curiosity, warmth and kindness, and to a ‘tool-box’ of practices that can help us to train this capacity.
We often think that finding peace and happiness depends on something changing on the outside. “If only my job/my relationship/my life/the world were different…..” Mindfulness shows us the possibility of finding an inner resource of calm in the midst of a frantic world. The simple yet powerful practices can be incorporated into daily life to help break the cycle of unhappiness, stress, anxiety, constant busy-ness and mental exhaustion. As a result, we may experience greater physical and mental wellbeing and discover a sense of living our lives more fully.
This course is based on the best-selling book Mindfulness: Finding Peace in a Frantic World by Professor Mark Williams (Emeritus Professor of Clinical Psychology at the University of Oxford and co-developer of Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy) and journalist Danny Penman. It consists of 8 weekly session of 1.5 hours, plus guided practices at home for about 15 minutes each day. The practices range from bringing awareness to the body both when still and when moving (gentle stretches and walking); settling our attention on the breath; relating differently to thoughts and worries; appreciating more fully what is already positive in our lives, and bringing greater kindness to ourselves and our experience.
“Peace can’t be achieved in the outside unless we have peace on the inside.” (Goldie Hawn)
Alison Yiangou is a fully qualified mindfulness teacher and an Associate of the Oxford Mindfulness Centre, where she teaches courses for the general public. She also teaches mindfulness courses locally and in schools.