Kristin Neff and Christopher Germer are pioneers in the scientific development of self-compassion. They have brought their respective experience together in the empirically-supported Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) program. This Core Skills Workshop allows an opportunity for people to immerse themselves in some of the key practices and exercises of the full 8-week program in an intensive 2-day format.
Self-compassion: What is It?
Self-compassion is the emotional attitude of bringing kindness to ourselves when things go wrong in our lives. Most of us easily treat our friends and loved ones with warmth, tenderness and patience when they struggle, fall short or fail at times in their lives, but we have a much harder time bringing those same qualities of compassion to our own selves in the same situations. Self-compassion is directed to the one who is suffering, and encourages us to consider the fundamental question of “What do I need?” By recognizing that difficulty is here (mindfulness), that these things are a part of every human life (common humanity), and connecting with our natural capacity for kindness toward suffering (self-kindness), we can develop healthy and enduring patterns of relating to all the circumstances of life.
Self-compassion: How to Learn It
Self-compassion can be learned by anyone, even those who didn’t receive enough affection in childhood or who find it embarrassing to be kind to oneself. It’s a courageous mental attitude that stands up to harm, including the discomfort that we unwittingly inflict on ourselves through self-criticism, self-isolation, and self-rumination when things go wrong. Self-compassion provides emotional strength and resilience, allowing us to admit our shortcomings, forgive ourselves, and respond to ourselves and others with care and respect, and be fully human.
MSC Core Skills Objectives:
At the completion of this activity, participants should be able to:
Program activities include talks, meditation, experiential exercises, and group discussion. Participants will directly experience self-compassion and learn practices that evoke self-compassion in daily life. No previous experience with mindfulness or meditation is required to attend the program.
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Christopher Germer, PhD is a co-developer of the MSC program and a co-founder of the Center for MSC. He is the author of the popular book, The Mindful Path to Self-Compassion, and co-author (with Kristin Neff) of the professional text, Teaching the Mindful Self-Compassion Program, and a workbook, The Mindful Self-Compassion Workbook. Chris is an MSC Teacher Trainer and leads MSC intensives and workshops around the world.
Chris is also a clinical psychologist and lecturer on psychiatry (part-time) at Harvard Medical School. Chris has been integrating the principles and practices of meditation into psychotherapy since 1978. He has co-edited two influential volumes –Mindfulness and Psychotherapy, and Wisdom and Compassion in Psychotherapy – and he is a founding faculty member of both the Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy and the Center for Mindfulness and Compassion, Cambridge Health Alliance, Harvard Medical School. Chris maintains a small private practice in Arlington, Massachusetts, USA, specializing in mindfulness and compassion-based psychotherapy.
Kristin Neff, PhD is widely recognized as one of the world’s leading experts on self-compassion, being the first one to operationally define and measure the construct over a decade ago. In addition to her pioneering research into self-compassion, she has developed an eight-week program to teach self-compassion skills in daily life, co-created with her colleague Dr. Chris Germer, called Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC). Her book, Self-Compassion, was published by William Morrow in April, 2011.