Mindful Self-Compassion


Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) was developed by Christopher K. Germer, PhD, leader in the integration of mindfulness and psychotherapy (www.mindfulselfcompassion.org) and Kristin Neff, PhD, pioneering researcher in the field of self-compassion (www.self-compassion.org). 

MSC combines the skills of mindfulness and self-compassion, providing a powerful tool for emotional resilience. Mindfulness is the first step in emotional healing - being able to turn toward and acknowledge our difficult thoughts and feelings (such as inadequacy, sadness, anger, confusion) with a spirit of openness and curiosity. 

Self-compassion involves responding to these difficult thoughts and feelings with kindness, sympathy and understanding so that we soothe and comfort ourselves when we're hurting. Research has shown that self-compassion greatly enhances emotional well-being. It boosts happiness, reduces anxiety and depression, and can even help maintain healthy lifestyle habits such as diet and exercise. Being both mindful and compassionate leads to greater ease and well-being in our daily lives.

MSC can be learned by anyone. It's the practice of repeatedly evoking good will toward ourselves - especially when we're suffering - and cultivating the same desire that all living beings have to live happily and free from suffering.

Most of us feel compassion when a close friend is struggling. What would it be like to receive the same caring attention whenever you needed it most? All that's required is a shift in the direction of our attention: recognizing that as a human being you, too, are a worthy recipient of compassion.

In MSC you will learn:

  • How to stop being so hard on yourself
  • How to handle difficult emotions with greater ease
  • How to motivate yourself with encouragement rather than criticism
  • How to transform difficult relations, both old and new
  • Mindfulness and self-compassion practices for home and everyday life
  • The theory and research behind mindful self-compassion
  • How to become your own best teacher

A randomized, controlled trial demonstrated that MSC significantly increased self-compassion, compassion for others, mindfulness, and life satisfaction, as well as decreased depression, anxiety and stress.  Improvements were linked to how much a person practiced mindfulness and self-compassion in their daily lives.

Recommended reading:

Kristin Neff, Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself

Christopher Germer, The Mindful Path to Self-Compassion

Current & Upcoming MSC Classes, Trainings and Retreats

    • 12 Apr 2018
    • 31 May 2018
    • 9 sessions
    • Aditi Yoga | Bodywork Studio, 4206 Stone Way North, Seattle, WA
    • 13

    Mindful Self-Compassion training offered in Wallingford


    Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) was developed by Christopher K. Germer, PhD, leader in the integration of mindfulness and psychotherapy (www.mindfulselfcompassion.org) and Kristin Neff, PhD, pioneering researcher in the field of self-compassion (www.self-compassion.org).

    MSC combines the skills of mindfulness and self-compassion, providing a powerful tool for emotional resilience. Mindfulness is the first step in emotional healing - being able to turn toward and acknowledge our difficult thoughts and feelings (such as inadequacy, sadness, anger, confusion) with a spirit of openness and curiosity.

    Self-compassion involves responding to these difficult thoughts and feelings with kindness, sympathy and understanding so that we soothe and comfort ourselves when we're hurting. Research has shown that self-compassion greatly enhances emotional well-being. It boosts happiness, reduces anxiety and depression, and can even help maintain healthy lifestyle habits such as diet and exercise. Being both mindful and compassionate leads to greater ease and well-being in our daily lives.

    MSC can be learned by anyone. It's the practice of repeatedly evoking good will toward ourselves - especially when we're suffering - and cultivating the same desire that all living beings have to live happily and be free from suffering.

    Most of us feel compassion when a close friend is struggling. What would it be like to receive the same caring attention whenever you needed it most? All that's required is a shift in the direction of our attention - recognizing that as a human being, you too, are a worthy recipient of compassion.

    In MSC you will learn:

    • How to stop being so hard on yourself
    • How to handle difficult emotions with greater ease
    • How to motivate yourself with encouragement rather than criticism
    • How to transform difficult relations, both old and new
    • Mindfulness and self-compassion practices for home and everyday life
    • The theory and research behind mindful self-compassion
    • How to become your own best teacher

    A randomized, controlled trial demonstrated that MSC significantly increased self-compassion, compassion for others, mindfulness, and life satisfaction, as well as decreased depression, anxiety and stress. Improvements were linked to how much a person practiced mindfulness and self-compassion in their daily lives.

    Schedule:
    8 classroom sessions: Thursdays noon - 2:45 pm, April 12 - May 31

    Retreat day: Saturday May 12, 11 am - 4 pm

    Instructor: Oori Silberstein, Mindfulness Northwest Instructor and Trained MSC Teacher

    Location:
    Classroom sessions:

    Aditi Yoga | Bodywork Studio
    4206 Stone Way North
    Seattle, WA 98103
    (map and directions)


    Retreat day (Saturday May 12th):

    Good Shepherd Center (iLeap Group Room, 4th floor)
    4649 Sunnyside Ave N
    Seattle, WA 98103
    (directions, map, and transit information available here)

    Cost:
    $340 - $520 sliding scale (paying on the higher end makes the lower end possible, our usual built-in "scholarship" system). 

    The fee includes all 9 meetings and instructional materials (course manual and home practice CDs).

    Payment plans are available during registration (4 equal monthly payments; no financing fee).

    Financial Assistance: Scholarship assistance may be available for those unable to pay at the low end of the sliding fee scale. Please APPLY FOR A SCHOLARSHIP.

    Registration:
       REGISTER ONLINE or register by phone at 360-830-6439 ext 0.


    Other Classes in the Area:

      See our full Spring schedule.
    • 05 Aug 2018
    • 5:00 PM
    • 10 Aug 2018
    • 2:00 PM
    • Dumas Bay Centre, 3200 SW Dash Point Rd, Federal Way, WA 98023
    • 10
    Register

    Our annual 5-day MSC Intensive in the Pacific Northwest.
    Transportation from SeaTac airport is available.

    Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) training teaches us how to develop the warm-hearted, connected presence we need during moments of difficulty. Self-compassion provides the emotional strength and resilience needed to offer ourselves the same kindness and understanding we would offer a good friend. With self-compassion we can motivate ourselves with encouragement, forgive ourselves when needed, face and befriend our shortcomings, care for others while caring for ourselves, and live more authentically. Research shows that self-compassion is strongly associated with emotional well-being, lower levels of anxiety and depression, healthy habits such as diet and exercise, and more satisfying personal relationships.

    And, self-compassion is a skill that can be learned and cultivated by anyone through Mindful Self-Compassion Training.

    In this course, you will:

    • Practice mindfulness and self-compassion in daily life
    • Learn how to handle difficult emotions with greater ease
    • Learn how to motivate yourself with kindness rather than criticism
    • Take a fresh look at challenging relationships, old and new
    • Learn tools to manage caregiver fatigue
    • Practice the art of savoring and self-appreciation
    • Be able to teach simple self-compassion practices to others

    This program is an intensive skills training program (not a silent meditation retreat). It is a condensed version of the eight-session, empirically-supported Mindful Self-Compassion training developed by Christopher Germer and Kristin Neff (and thus fulfills a prerequisite for becoming an MSC teacher). (Should you prefer a 5-day silent retreat incorporating elements of Mindful Self-Compassion, please see our Roots of Compassion retreat).

    MSC is an experiential journey - an adventure in self-discovery and self-kindness - offering periods of instruction and periods of practice. Our full days include an optional morning meditation before breakfast, full 3-hour classroom sessions in the morning and afternoon, and some evening activities.

    Self-Compassion can be learned by anyone, even those of us who did not learn these skills as children.

    Instructors

    Tim Burnett, Executive Director of Mindfulness Northwest, Trained MSC Teacher, teacher of MBSR and Compassion Cultivation Training. More on Tim.

    &

    Michelle Becker, senior teacher and teacher trainer for the Center for Mindful Self-Compassion and the University of California San Diego Center for Mindfulness, and licensed marriage and family therapist. More on Michelle.

    Schedule
    August 5 - 10, 2018:
    Starts Sunday with 4pm - 5pm check-in.
    Closes on Friday by 2pm after lunch.

    Cost
    Tuition for this intensive skills training program is sliding scale $775 - $1175 (paying on the higher end makes the lower end possible, our usual built-in "scholarship" system).

    Note that room & board is an additional charge (see below for more details). If you elect to stay on site (which we highly recommend) there is an additional charge of $625 for room & board, bringing the total retreat fee to $1400 - $1800.

    Each registration includes a $350 deposit that is non-refundable after July 5th, 2018.

    Payment plans are available during registration (4 equal monthly payments; no financing fee).

    Financial Assistance: Scholarship assistance may be available for those unable to pay at the low end of the sliding fee scale. Please APPLY FOR A SCHOLARSHIP.

    Registration
       REGISTER ONLINE or register by phone at 360-830-6439 ext 0.

    Room & Board
    The housing in this former convent is all single rooms costing $625 inclusive. The rooms are small but comfortable and have en-suite bathrooms. All meals are included (Sunday dinner through Friday lunch). Most dietary needs can be easily accommodated.

    Although commuter attendance is possible we highly encourage you to stay on site. This makes for a much more complete and valuable experience. Please contact us at office@mindfulnessnorthwest.com before registering as a commuter so we can discuss the options with you. The commuter option costs $275 all meals included (Sunday dinner through Friday lunch), or $110 for lunch only. Due to the terms of the venue, it is not possible to bring your own lunch unless there is a medical need.

    Location & Transportation
    Dumas Bay Retreat Centre in Federal Way is a peaceful former convent on the Puget Sound and yet only a 30 minute drive from SeaTac airport (Seattle-Tacoma International Airport - SEA).

    For those flying in please see the shuttle service we're offering between SeaTac airport (Seattle) and the retreat site (there is a separate sign-up and fee for this shuttle service).

    Continuing Education Credits:
    Continuing education credits are available in the following categories for an additional $40 charge. 

    Psychologists: This program is sponsored by UC San Diego Center for Mindfulness. The UC San Diego Center for Mindfulness is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The UC San Diego Center for Mindfulness maintains responsibility for this program and its content. This course offers 24.0 hours of credit.

    California Licensed MFTs, LPCCs, LEPs, LCSWs: This activity is an approved continuing education program by the American Psychological Association. 24.0 contact hours may be applied to your license renewal through the California Board of Behavioral Sciences. For those licensed outside California, please check with your local licensing board to determine if APA accreditation meets their requirements.

    Nurses: UC San Diego Center for Mindfulness is approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider Number CEP16351, for 28.75 contact hours.

    Recommended reading:

    Other Retreats

    Rainforest Retreat (7-day silent retreat)
    May 26 - Jun 2. A 7-day mindfulness retreat in Costa Rica.

    Roots of Compassion (5-day silent retreat)
    Aug 26 - 31. Incorporating elements of both Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) and Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR). Held north of Seattle.

    Compassion for Couples Retreat (weekend retreat)
    Sept 28 - 30. Utilizing the skills of mindfulness and compassion, this program teaches how to build a strong and healthy foundation for relationships, and provides skills to help navigate the difficulties that arise within us and between us.

    Roots of Mindfulness (7-day silent retreat)
    Oct 14 - 21. A 7-day mindfulness retreat held north of Seattle.

    OR see our full schedule of upcoming classes, workshops and retreats.
    • 26 Aug 2018
    • 5:00 PM
    • 31 Aug 2018
    • 2:00 PM
    • Samish Island, Skagit County, WA
    • 47
    Register

    The Roots of Compassion: a 5-day Mindfulness & Compassion Practice Retreat
    90 minutes north of Seattle

    Sunday August 26 - Friday August 31

    Join us for a 5-day mindfulness and compassion retreat in the style of Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) and Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) at a beautiful retreat site on Samish Island in the Samish River delta of Skagit County in Washington state (roughly 90 minutes north of Seattle). The retreat will be a deep exploration of the roots of mindfulness and compassion practices, both experientially and through a series of talks on Buddhist teachings and connected ideas from philosophy, poetry, and the sciences.

    2018 Roots of Compassion Theme: The Four Divine Abodes (Brahma Viharas) of Buddhism. A traditional Buddhist list which is one of the few to feature compassion and puts it in a context with 3 other critical mental factors to be developed.

    Course details
    This residential retreat will be held mostly in silence and will include a series of gently guided mindfulness practices including sitting meditation, walking meditation, gentle yoga, and the body scan, as well as compassion cultivation and loving kindness meditations.


    This retreat will be highly relevant to students of mindfulness and compassion interested in deepening their practice and to teachers of mindfulness and compassion who would like to strengthen their background understanding of the Buddhist roots of contemporary programs like MBSR and MSC.

    (Note: should you prefer a 5-day Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) skills training workshop - a condensed version of the eight-session, empirically-supported MSC training developed by Christopher Germer and Kristin Neff - please see our Mindful Self-Compassion 5-day Training.)

    Simple accommodations (single occupancy in most cases) and all meals will be included.

    Details on what to bring will be sent upon registration.

    Round trip transportation from SeaTac Airport (Seattle) to the retreat site is available with our shuttle service (register separately).

    Schedule 

    August 26 - 31:
    Starts Sunday August 26th with 4pm - 5pm check-in.
    Closes Friday August 31st by 2pm.

    Prerequisites
    Before practicing for nearly a full week we recommend that you have experience with mindfulness or related contemplative practices. The retreat is designed firstly for graduates of the intensive 8-week classes in Mindful Self-Compassion and Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and should also be fine for those who have tasted mindfulness or meditation in teacher-led classes, retreats, or meditation centers. Contact us if you have questions about whether this retreat will be appropriate for you.

    Teacher Training and Development
    This retreat meets requirements for training as a Mindful Self-Compassion teacher which requires a 5-day silent retreat before beginning Teacher Training (see the Center for Mindful Self-Compassion website for details). This course also meets the prerequisites for those in the the Center for Mindfulness' Oasis training pathway which requires both 5-day and 7-day retreats. See the CFM website for more information.

    Instructor

    • Rev. Tim Burnett, Teacher: Guiding Instructor and Executive Director at Mindfulness Northwest
    • Oori Silberstein, Assistant Teacher: Mindfulness Northwest Instructor and Trained MSC Teacher

    Cost
    $590 - $790 (paying on the higher end makes the lower end possible, our usual built-in "scholarship" system). Plus an additional surcharge ($50 - $100) for some housing options (see below).

    Payment plans are available during registration (4 equal monthly payments; no financing fee).

    Financial Assistance: Scholarship assistance may be available for those unable to pay at the low end of the sliding fee scale. Please APPLY FOR A SCHOLARSHIP.

    Registration
    REGISTER ONLINE or register by phone at 360-830-6439 ext 0.

    Location
    Samish Island Campground, 11565 Scott Road, Bow, Washington. Instructions and details will be provided when you register. Samish Island Campground is about 90 minutes north of Seattle and 40 minutes south of Bellingham.

    This beautiful campground maintained by the Community of Christ at the east end of Samish Island (accessible by road) offers stunning views, deep quiet, and simple accommodations.

    It is not really an island - you can drive there.

    And it's not exactly a campground - there are simple rustic cabins and motel-like "e-cabins" available (see "Accommodations", below, for more details). RV and tent camping is also available.

    Directions and Transportation
    Directions and more information about Samish Island Campground are available here.

    Round trip transportation from SeaTac Airport (Seattle) to the retreat site is available with our shuttle service (register separately).

    Note that there is no public transportation all the way to Samish Island.

    And see also the ride board for setting up ride shares.

    Accommodations
    Samish Island "Campground" does not require camping. There are two types of cabins: rustic cabins, which are simple plywood cabins built in the 1950's - they have heat, beds, and share campground bathroom buildings; and e-cabins, which are modern motel-level buildings where two units share a bathroom.

    The 40 rustic cabins are quieter and simpler but one must walk across the lawn to the bathrooms.

    The 16 e-cabins are lighter, more modern, and share a bathroom. There can be more noise in e-cabins due to the sharing of the bathroom and we ask e-cabin residents to be very careful of the noise from doors and bathroom fixtures so as not to disturb their neighbor.

    A surcharge is required for lodging in the more modern e-cabins. A $50 surcharge is required for double occupancy in an e-cabin (with a single roommate), and a $100 surcharge is required for single occupancy.

    Consider helping us make e-cabins available to more people, and save $50, by requesting double occupancy. We will do our best to match you with a compatible roommate and to honor requests for roommates if you are coming to retreat with a friend.

    During the registration process, you may request one of these options: rustic, e-cabin with double occupancy, e-cabin with single occupancy, or RV or camping.

     Rustic Cabins Exterior:  Rustic Cabin Interior:
     Samish rustic cabin  
     E-Cabin Exterior:  E-Cabin Interior:
       


    Expectations of Participants
    By signing up for this retreat you are agreeing to:

    1) Follow the Schedule - participate in the practice schedule as fully as possible. We allow alternate schedules and variations in the schedule due to health needs. This is a structured week of practice with a schedule of practices we will do together starting first thing in the morning. That structure is a powerful support for deepening our mindfulness practice.

    2) Do jobs and chores - do some chores around the camp. You will have the option of choosing an ongoing job or helping with cleaning and organizing at the end of the week. The Samish Island Campground is staffed by a small volunteer staff and costs are held low by asking the visiting group to leave the camp as clean as they found it.

    Other Retreats and Trainings

    Rainforest Retreat (7-day silent retreat)
    May 26 - Jun 2. A 7-day mindfulness retreat in Costa Rica.

    Mindful Self-Compassion 5-day Training (5-day skills training workshop)
    Aug 5 - 10. A condensed version of the eight-session, empirically-supported Mindful Self-Compassion training developed by Christopher Germer and Kristin Neff. 
    Held just south of Seattle.

    Compassion for Couples Retreat (weekend retreat)
    Sept 28 - 30. Utilizing the skills of mindfulness and compassion, this program teaches how to build a strong and healthy foundation for relationships, and provides skills to help navigate the difficulties that arise within us and between us.

    Roots of Mindfulness Retreat (7-day silent retreat)
    Oct 14 - 21. A 7-day mindfulness retreat held north of Seattle.

    OR see our full schedule of upcoming classes, workshops and retreats.

    • 28 Sep 2018
    • 5:00 PM
    • 30 Sep 2018
    • 2:00 PM
    • Camp Burton, 9326 SW Bayview Dr, Vashon, WA
    • 24
    Register


    As important as our relationships are, they are not always easy!

    Compassion for Couples (CfC) is a residential weekend retreat designed to help us meet ourselves and our partners with greater awareness and compassion. Utilizing the skills of mindfulness and compassion, this program teaches how to build a strong and healthy foundation for relationships, and provides skills to help navigate the difficulties that arise within us and between us.

    “We left the course feeling refreshed and re-invested in our commitment to our relationship, but perhaps more helpful than that is that we left with a bag full of practical tools to access on a daily basis in real life.”


    “I appreciate so much the foundation we learned in self-compassion. It was clear, simple to remember and immediately effective in changing my state. The course appealed to my best self, who really wants to love and accept my partner with compassion. I came away with concrete steps for doing just that, and enough practice that my body is reminding me of what I can do differently now! Many thanks, we were blessed to take part in Compassion for Couples!”

    Partners attend together and will learn to:

    • Be more present with each other
    • Identify shared values
    • Build a base of warmth, security, and connection
    • Communicate with kindness and compassion
    • Comfort themselves and their partner
    • Skillfully relate to their partner in times of difficulty
    • Gain a greater understanding of themselves, their partner, and shared relational patterns

    CfC builds on the skills developed in the Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) course. No prior experience with mindfulness or compassion is needed. If couples would like to familiarize themselves with MSC, consider reading Chris Germer’s The Mindful Path to Self-Compassion or Kristin Neff’s Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself. Or taking the Mindful Self-Compassion course before or after Compassion for Couples.

    Overall Schedule

    September 28 - 30, 2018:
    Starts Friday with 4pm - 5pm check-in.
    Closes on Sunday after 12:30pm lunch.
    (Detailed schedule available below)

    Eligibility
    This program is designed for committed couples of all types who wish to deepen their compassion practice in service of strengthening a healthy relationship that supports partners in actualizing their dreams. It is not designed to be couples therapy, although compassion skills can be therapeutic.

    Instructors

    Tim Burnett, Executive Director and Guiding Instructor at Mindfulness Northwest, Certified teacher of Mindful Self-Copmpassion (MSC), Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), and Compassion Cultivation Training (CCT). Tim is also a Zen Buddhist priest and has been in a committed relationship for 31 years.

    Michelle Becker, LMFT,  is the developer of the Compassion for Couples program and a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with a private practice in San Diego. Additionally, she is a certified teacher of Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC), Compassion Cultivation Training (CCT), and The Daring Way™ and Rising Strong™ programs and a senior teacher trainer, mentor, and co-founder of the teacher-training program in Mindful Self-Compassion. She teaches and speaks on the topics of compassion for self and others nationally and internationally. For more information on Michelle’s teaching and schedule please visit her website, www.wisecompassion.com.

    Cost
    $650 - $990 regular sliding scale (per person), includes tuition, room and board.  Paying on the higher end makes the lower end possible, our usual built-in "scholarship" system.

    Payment plans are available during registration (4 equal monthly payments; no financing fee).

    Financial Assistance: Scholarship assistance may be available for those unable to pay at the low end of the sliding fee scale. Please APPLY FOR A SCHOLARSHIP.

    Registration
    This course is for couples of every age, ability, and sexual orientation but our registration system is set up for people to register individually. One person in the couple may register both of you in one transaction (the second person being registered as a guest), or each person may register separately.

       REGISTER ONLINE or register by phone at 360-830-6439 ext 0.

    Location
    Camp Burton
    9326 SW Bayview Dr, Vashon, Washington, is a beautiful retreat center on Vashon Island overlooking Quartermaster Harbor and backed by a large native forest. Camp Burton is roughly 1 ½ - 2 hours from both downtown Seattle and SeaTac airport, including a short ferry ride to the island.

    Note that ferries to Vashon Island can be accessed from Tacoma in the south (Point Defiance), West Seattle to the east (Fauntleroy) and the Kitsap Peninsula to the west (Southworth). West Seattle's Fauntleroy terminal is closest to SeaTac airport.

    https://goo.gl/maps/r21KahhajMx

    Room & Board
    Room and board is included with the registration fee. Each couple will have their own room with two single beds and an en-suite bathroom (shower + toilet + sink).


    Detailed Schedule

    Friday

    dinner 5:30pm - 6:30pm
    program 7:00pm - 9:00pm

    Saturday 

    breakfast 8:30am - 9:30am
    morning program 9:30am - 11:30am
    lunch 12:30pm - 1:30pm
    afternoon program 3:00pm - 5:00pm
    dinner 5:30pm - 6:30pm
    evening program 6:30pm - 9:00pm

    Sunday

    breakfast 8:30am - 9:30am
    (time for packing up)
    morning program 10:00am - 12:00pm
    lunch 12:30pm 


    Other Retreats and Trainings of Interest

    A condensed version of the eight-session Mindful Self-Compassion training.
    August 5 - 10.

    OR see our full schedule of upcoming classes, workshops and retreats.


 Mindful Self-Compassion was created by
The Center for Mindful Self-Compassion
founded by
Drs. Kristen Neff & Christopher Germer

Mindfulness Northwest, a 501c(3) Tax-Exempt Non-Profit    office@mindfulnessnorthwest.com    360-830-6439
214 N. Commercial St. #103, Bellingham, WA 98225


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