Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction
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- As more and more people have begun incorporating mindfulness into their lives, formal programs that teach mindfulness techniques have started popping up everywhere from hospitals to community centers to onsite employee wellness facilities. One of the most popular of these types of types of programs is Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction.Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction – commonly known as MBSR – was created by Jon Kabat-Zinn in 1979. Working with chronically ill patients, he created a curriculum that combined mindfulness meditation, breathing, yoga, and other relaxation techniques. The program was designed as an evidence-based treatment to help patients to reduce stress, overcome physical and mental pain, and live better lives overall.Kabat-Zinn’s original MBSR program, which is still offered at UMass Medical School’s Center for Mindfulness, includes an orientation, eight weekly classes, and an all-day retreat. Classes encompass guided meditation, yoga and stretching, group discussions, formal MBSR meditation instruction, and daily assignments. MBSR programs are now widely available across America, including from Strive, and there are many variations – like online options, five-day intensive courses, and downloadable classes.MBSR is built on the principles of mindfulness – which emphasizes staying in the present moment and not thinking about the past or the future. During mindfulness meditation, you’re encouraged to feel your emotions without judging them as good or bad – allowing your emotions to simply exist. Instead of trying to escape negative experiences – like pain, anxiety, or stress – or trying to recapture positive experiences – like happiness or love, you learn to let yourself be with whatever you’re feeling present moment.MBSR programs take mindfulness one step further, incorporating additional elements like yoga and breathing to help participants apply specific aspects of mindfulness to stress, pain, and illness reduction and to improve overall well-being. Studies have found that MBSR is effective at improving a range of conditions, including:
MBSR also can result in a better quality of life, can boost the immune system, and can have positive effects on the brain that result in better learning, memory and emotional regulation.When it comes to managing stress in the workplace, studies show that mindfulness programs are absolutely effective. The most extensive workplace mindfulness study conducted to date found that participants who practiced mindfulness combined with therapeutic yoga – like an MBSR program – reported sleeping better and feeling less stress. Mindfulness also improves leadership, with one study showing that when supervisors exhibited mindfulness, employee well-being and job satisfaction were higher.MBSR is traditionally an in-person program, but recent studies have found that it’s successful no matter how it’s delivered. The previously-mentioned workplace study included both online and in-person programs and found similar results in both. Another study that offered veterans with PTSD a telehealth mindfulness program found that participants were still able to improve mindfulness without attending classes in person. MBSR has even been shown to be effective when delivered by audiotape to psoriasis patients who were undergoing skin treatment. These studies may pave the way for additional MBSR options to accommodate the increasing number of workers who telecommute or travel frequently.At Strive, we provide employers with on onsite MBSR programs and have a range of options:
Each one of our programs are taught by a certified MBSR instructor and is structured to help employees use mindfulness to manage stress, pain, and illness. Participants learn:
- Drop-in Mindfulness/Meditation sessions
- A recurring 6-week MBSR course with a 2-hour weekly commitment
- One-on-one sessions
With every one of our MBSR options, Strive provides administrative time for notes, meetings, and consulting. You can also use any of these options as a supplement to an existing hospital program, inviting a Strive certified MBSR professional to your program as a guest Mindfulness Meditation instructor.As with all Strive Stress Management programs, your MBSR program will be fully-handled by your designated program coordinator. This single point of contact will work with your staff to arrange all the details – from deciding when and where to offer your MBSR classes, assessing how many classes to offer, and hiring pre-screened, fully-certified MBSR instructors with extensive experience in the field.Since Strive MBSR programs are entirely turn-key, we'll provide communications and marketing materials like flyers and calendar that you can share with your employees to generate awareness and excitement for your wellness initiative. We’ll also take care of employee enrollment and track participation and engagement. You’ll get regular reports on how each class is performing, so you can make adjustments at any time.We even handle the liability process with comprehensive liability insurance coverage – including workers compensation – and a provision of services that fully-indemnifies you from risk. We also distribute and manage electronic employee liability waiver forms.Of course, you can also combine your Strive MBSR program with any other Strive employer wellness program – from additional Stress Management options to Employee Fitness and more. Your single program coordinator will oversee and incorporate every program you select and can work with you to establish programs in multiple locations nationwide. We’ll handle all the administration, coordination, and invoicing, so all your paperwork will be conveniently compiled from one single source.
- the fundamental differences between MBSR and other relaxation techniques
- specific benefits of MBSR that can be shared with others
- how to use mindfulness techniques in both personal and professional settings
- how to improve communication in social interactions by integrating mindfulness
- brief practices that can be implemented to deal with acute pain or anxiety
Contact us to learn about our entire catalog of workplace wellness programming.
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