Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Summer Class
July 8-August 26
Retreat on Saturday, August 16
$130 for members
Non-members will need to purchase a single quarter IMA membership for $66 + tax.
Register here. Choose Course Offerings then Special Interest.
What is MBSR?
Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) is a program originally designed over thirty years ago by Jon Kabat-Zinn, Ph.D. The course has a basis in eastern psychology but is very applicable to modern secular life.
Mindfulness is the practice of sustained focus, self-regulation, self-exploration, and self-liberation with an accepting, open and kind attitude. This practice can produce calmness and expanded awareness. Neurophysiological studies have shown increased brain growth and function in areas of emotional control and executive function in as little as 8 weeks. Course evaluations show decreased stress, improved self image, and improved emotional regulation. Improved concentration and less anxiety are common outcomes.
The course consists of 8 weekly 2.5 hour sessions plus one all-day session. The methods of the course are briefly the following:
- Sitting meditation
- Body scans and body awareness practice–no athleticism required. Some practices may include lying down but position is optional. Yoga mats or floor cushions are responsibility of student and not provided.
- Home formal meditation practice-approx. 45 minutes/day maximum.
- Regularity is better and is more productive than large amounts of time.
- Class discussions
- Personal examination of experience and our ability to mold experience.
- Personal acceptance practice
- Empathy practice
- Learning to better separate “mind creations” and “reality”
- There is no required book or reading homework. Experiencing as opposed to “book learning” is encouraged.
The course requires a commitment to completion. The concepts usually come together and there is a shift in perspective around half way through the course. The goal of the course is to provide an alternative framework for experiencing and operating in the world that will be less stressful, anxiety provoking, and require fewer struggles. There is data that highly suggests the program can increase the participants’ well-being and improve function and empathy
The course will be taught by Sherry Williams. Sherry is a registered yoga teacher with Yoga Alliance (E-RYT200, RYT500), and practiced law in Tacoma and Seattle for over 20 years. She has had additional training through the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center, and completed an 18-month Mindful Yoga and Meditation Training at Spirit Rock Meditation Center in California in 2012.