such_heights: a hand cupping a candle (stock: candle)
Amy ([personal profile] such_heights) wrote2011-05-12 05:05 pm
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on compassion and mindfulness

So a couple of people on my rlist have been posting resources to do with meditation, mindfulness and practicing kindness and compassion lately. Given there seems to be some interest, and this is also something I'm working on at the moment, I thought I would share some resources that my psychologist has given me on the subject.

In my sessions with her at the moment we're essentially working on developing a kind of anti-depression toolkit based on ideas of mindfulness and extending compassion to oneself. Those ideas stem from Buddhist tradition and are being increasingly used by Western health care professionals to help patients tackle a range of issues and conditions. In my case I'm particularly focusing working to minimise self-criticism and low self-esteem, but it can be useful for a number of different situations as well as having potential benefits just in general. Kindness is good!

One of the things that I've been trying to learn recently about self-criticism, beating yourself up, whatever you want to call it, is that it's not very helpful. As well as being bad for my mental health and general wellbeing, it just isn't very conducive to me actually doing whatever it is I'm chastising myself for not doing. So I'm trying to internalise the kinds of things that I'd imagine a supportive friend or a good teacher saying instead, but it's hard.

Anyway. If you're interested in any of this for any reason, you can download the booklet I've been working from here - mediafire link to .pdf - and this is the main website, Compassionate Mind, though I confess it's basically horrible to navigate so I don't know if there's content there of any interest.

Further reading:

[personal profile] happydork has a list of eight mindfulness exercises.

[ profile] sheafrotherdon has detailed book recommendations on the subject.

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