by Tammy Lyons and Justin Glanville
Why is self-compassion important?
Tammy: Self compassion is a practice that most of us are not engaged in on a regular basis - in fact we are often engaged in the exact opposite practice - the one of "I suck". That was meant to be funny, but sadly it isn't far from the truth. Most of us can access gratitude easily and we are able to be generous often and even kindness isn't too far of a stretch. But self-compassion, that practice of I am worthy, I am unashamed of who I am and I am doing the best I can with what I have in this moment, that is not easy for most of us to access.
Justin: Self-compassion is learning to be kind to ourselves. That's different from coddling or indulging ourselves; it's just treating yourself as you would a friend. That way, we can give ourselves what we need rather than always waiting to receive it from others (e.g. praise, warmth, sympathy, rest, nourishment, etc.).
Why is this course worth pursuing?
Tammy: Self-compassion is the very foundation of living in a state of joy. That is why this offering, this practice of self-compassion, is worthy of your time and consideration.
Justin: In our society, it's so easy to compare ourselves to others and feel we are not enough, to internalize criticism we received in the past - and carry it around with us sometimes for decades. This course is a way of gaining perspective on all that. Also, when we're kinder to ourselves, we're kinder to others.
How does it relate to yoga?
Tammy: This practice relates to yoga in that through breath and movement we are moving towards alignment with our divine self or fully inhabiting the moment. If we are in our heads, beating ourselves up for the one millionth time for the exact same thing, presence is a continent away. Self-compassion is a new way of thinking and experiencing ourselves. It is a place for the mind to rest that naturally leads towards joy, creativity, love and presence.
Justin: Yoga is about connecting with yourself and the world around you, rather than living in illusion and distraction. Self-compassion training also gives you tools for doing that, with an emphasis on working with thoughts and feelings.
What is your opinion of the workshop's teachers?
Tammy: I loved the way Martin explained this offering and even after many questions, he continued to be lit up over the profound effect this could have on those who join in.
Justin: Martin and Chris are such professionals. It's easy to hear "self-compassion training" and think it's going to be all touchy-feely and "woo-woo." But this is a practical, well-organized course based on scientific research. Martin and Chris base everything on that, while also holding space for the more emotional moments that may arise. Plus, it's fun to listen to Martin's English accent!
Mindful Self-Compassion Course led by Martin Thomson-Jones and Chris Checkett. Beginning September 13th (skipping October 18th) from 6:30 - 9:00 pm in the Westlake small studio. $425.00 for course. This will include 9 sessions in 8 weeks (includes a 1/2 day retreat) Space is limited so please consider signing up early. (a few scholarships will be available)
Based on the groundbreaking research of Kristin Neff and the clinical expertise of Christopher Germer, Mindful Self-Compassion is an empirically-supported training program designed to cultivate the skill of self-compassion.
It teaches core principles and practices that enable participants to respond to difficult moments in their lives with kindness, care, and understanding. Self-compassion can be learned by anyone, and and it provides emotional strength and resilience, allowing us to admit our shortcomings, motivate ourselves with kindness, forgive ourselves when needed, relate wholeheartedly to others, and be more authentically ourselves.
Rapidly expanding research shows that increased self-compassion is strongly associated with greater emotional wellbeing, less anxiety, depression, and stress, maintenance of healthy habits such as diet and exercise, and satisfying personal relationships. And it’s easier than you think.
Please consider taking the Free Introductory Workshop on August 16th in the Westlake small studio from 7:00 - 8:30 pm. The workshop will be a mix of short talks, experiential exercises, discussion, and an introductory meditation. No previous experience with mindfulness or meditation is required, and you don't need to sign up in advance.
For more information about the course, the introductory workshop, the teachers, and the registration process, please visit www.oberlinmsc.org. And for any questions, including inquiries about scholarships, please use the contact form there, or contact Martin and Chris by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.