Programs



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THERAPEUTIC GROUPS

MINDFULNESS-BASED COGNITIVE THERAPY (MBCT) 

A 9-week program for coping with anxiety, depression and emotional distress. In this program, you will learn to access and cultivate your natural capacity to actively engage in caring for yourself and find greater balance, ease and peace of mind.

Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy is an evidence based treatment approach developed by Drs. Zindel Segal, Mark Williams, and John Teasdale that has been proven effective for reducing stress and anxiety and preventing relapse in those who suffer from depression. It combines the practice of mindfulness with the skills of cognitive therapy. Mindfulness is about paying attention, on purpose, to the present moment without judgement. The core principles and skills of mindfulness facilitate greater awareness and acceptance of thoughts, emotions and sensations which help us break free from automatic, habitual responses that are often unhelpful to our well-being. Mindfulness also cultivates compassion towards ourselves and others. Cognitive therapy is designed to interrupt negative and unhealthy thought patterns that lead to depressive and anxious spirals.

To learn more about MBCT CLICK HERE .

What to expect
The first week is devoted to a group orientation where an overview of the program will be provided. During this session, we will also meet briefly with you (10-15 minutes) individually to help make sure that the program will be beneficial for you. The duration of this orientation session is approximately 3 hours with participation being a requirement for enrollment in the program.

After the orientation session of the MBCT program, participants will then meet as a group with a facilitator(s) once a week for 8 weeks. Each session is 2.5 hours long. In addition to these sessions there will be one all-day mindfulness retreat held on a weekend between weeks 5 and 7. Each session is organized around a theme that is explored through short talks, experiential exercises, group inquiry and mindfulness meditation practices. Participants will be provided materials (handouts and audio) to support what they are learning in the classes and for use during home practice.  Commitment to home practice is an essential component for participation in and effectiveness of the program.  This home practice will take approximately an hour a day, six days a week, for eight weeks and involves such tasks as listening to audios, meditation and performing brief exercises.

The MBCT program will teach you specific techniques aimed at reducing anxiety and depression as well as how to cope with emotional distress as it arises.

In addition, the program is aimed at helping you:

  • become familiar with the workings of your mind
  • notice the times when you are at risk of getting caught in old habits of mind that re-activate anxious and downward mood spirals
  • explore ways of releasing yourself from those old habits and, if you choose, enter a different way of being
  • get in touch with a different way of knowing yourself and the world
  • notice small beauties and pleasures in the world around you instead of living in your head
  • be kind to yourself instead of wishing things were different all the time, or driving yourself to meet impossible goals
  • find a way so you don’t have to battle with yourself all the time
  • accept yourself as you are, rather than judging yourself all the time

Our therapeutic groups are small (about 12-13 people).

Who should attend
This program is for anyone who is experiencing moderate depression or anxiety or has a history of depression. It is also for those who are interested in learning a set of strategies designed to help manage mood and promote long term wellness. Meditation experience is not necessary to participate in this program.

This program is not recommended for individuals currently suffering from severe depression or psychosis.

All participants must be free of substance misuse.

Materials
Participants can use our meditation Zafu cushions and yoga mats during the sessions or are welcome to bring their own. Chairs will also be available. It is advisable to wear loose, comfortable causal clothing. All handouts and audio materials will be provided and are included in the program fee.

Fee: $520* (materials and HST included).

*The MBCT program is not covered under MSI. However, those with extended healthcare benefits (i.e., private health insurance) may be eligible for reimbursement. Please contact your health insurance provider for details as to whether therapeutic group sessions offered by a Registered Psychologist are covered.

Note that any fees not paid by medical insurance may be tax deductible as a medical expense.

In order to make our therapeutic groups more accessible to everyone, payment plans are available for those who require it.  A valid credit card is required for this option.

Please be aware of our payment, cancellation and refund policies.

Completed registrations indicate understanding and acceptance of our Payment, Cancellation and Refund Policy.

CLICK HERE for our policies

Registration

Enrollment is limited as our groups are small (about 12-13 people). Pre-registration is required.

SEE IF MINDFULNESS-BASED COGNITIVE THERAPY IS CURRENTLY OFFERED/SIGN-UP

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MINDFUL SELF-COMPASSION

An 8 week program in developing a caring relationship with yourself and others. In this program, you will learn how to be with difficult emotions and moments in your life with kindness, care and understanding.

Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) is an empirically supported program developed by Drs. Kristin Neff and Christopher Germer, designed to cultivate the skill of self-compassion.  MSC teaches core principles and essential tools for treating yourself in a kind, compassionate way whenever you suffer, fail or feel inadequate rather than the typical response of self-criticism, self-denial, or self-absorption. Self-compassion provides emotional strength and resilience, allowing us to admit our shortcomings, forgive ourselves, motivate ourselves with kindness, care for others, and be fully human.

The three key components of self-compassion are self-kindness, a sense of common humanity, and balanced, mindful awareness. Kindness opens our hearts to suffering, so we can give ourselves what we need. Common humanity opens us to our essential interrelatedness, so that we know we aren’t alone. Mindfulness opens us to the present moment, so we can accept our experience with greater ease. Together they comprise a state of warm-hearted, connected presence.

Self-compassion can be learned by anyone, even those who did not receive enough affection in childhood or who feel uncomfortable when they are good to themselves.

Growing research continues to show 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. To learn more about MSC CLICK HERE

What to expect
In the MSC program, participants will meet as a group with a teacher(s) for 3 hours once a week for 8 weeks in addition to a 4 hour retreat. Participants will learn and apply the three key components of self-compassion using meditation, short talks, experiential exercises, group discussion, and home practices. Participants will be provided materials (handouts and audio) to support what they are learning in the weekly sessions and for use during home practice.

MSC is primarily a compassion training program rather than a mindfulness training/retreat, although mindfulness is the foundation of self-compassion. The goal of the MSC program is to provide a safe and supportive environment for exploring how we typically respond when difficult emotions arise and to provide tools for becoming a warm and supportive companion to ourselves. Unlike group or individual therapy, the emphasis will be on enhancing emotional resources and personal capacities rather than addressing old wounds.

Following this program, participants should be able to:

  • practice self-compassion in daily life
  • understand the empirically-supportive benefits of self-compassion
  • respond to feelings of failure or inadequacy with self-kindness
  • handle difficult emotions with greater ease and acceptance
  • transform difficult/challenging relationships, old and new
  • motivate themselves with encouragement rather than self-criticism
  • manage caregiver fatigue
  • practice the art of savouring and self-appreciation

Our therapeutic groups are small (about 12-13 people).

Who should attend
No previous experience with mindfulness or meditation is necessary to attend MSC. This program is designed for anyone who wishes to integrate and cultivate greater self-compassion into their lives and/or work. To insure safety, participants are asked to provide background information when they register for the program. It is recommended that participants read one or both of the following books before or during the program:

  • Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself, by Kristin Neff
  • The Mindful Path to Self-Compassion, by Christopher Germer

Materials
Participants can use our meditation Zafu cushions and yoga mats during the sessions or are welcome to bring their own. Chairs will also be available. It is advisable to wear loose, comfortable causal clothing. All handouts and audio materials will be provided and are included in the program fee.

Fee: $520*  (materials and HST included).

*The MSC program is not covered under MSI. However, those with extended healthcare benefits (i.e., private health insurance) may be eligible for reimbursement. Please contact your health insurance provider for details as to whether therapeutic group sessions offered by a Registered Psychologist are covered.

Note that any fees not paid by medical insurance may be tax deductible as a medical expense.

In order to make our therapeutic groups more accessible to everyone, payment plans are available for those who require it.  A valid credit card is required for this option.

Please be aware of our payment, cancellation and refund policies.

Completed registrations indicate understanding and acceptance of our Payment, Cancellation and Refund Policy.

CLICK HERE for our policies

Registration
Enrollment is limited as our groups are small (about 12-13 people). Pre-registration is required.

SEE IF MINDFUL SELF-COMPASSION IS CURRENTLY OFFERED/SIGN-UP

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WORKSHOPS AND CLASSES

INTRODUCTION TO MINDFULNESS – 2 Hour Workshop

A great way to get a good sense of what mindfulness has to offer is to experience it. This 2 hour workshop introduces participants to a range of short mindfulness practices together with an overview of the core principles of mindfulness and a little about its origins and current applications.

Mindfulness is a gentle and effective way to cultivate awareness of thoughts, emotions and sensations and help us stay connected to the present moment. It helps us break free from automatic, habitual reactions that are often unhelpful for our well-being and allows us to respond in ways that reflect our true desires, values and intentions. Mindfulness also invites acceptance of our inner and outer experiences and meeting such experiences in a compassionate, non-judgmental way.

Mindfulness can calm the mind and slow things down. It has been well researched with scientific evidence mounting for its positive affect on physical and psychological well-being and its ability to produce positive lasting change in the brain.

Some benefits of mindfulness include:

  • Improved sleep and increased energy
  • Reduced anxiety and feelings of stress
  • Reduced symptoms of depression and relapse
  • Increased concentration, focus and memory
  • Increased resiliency and coping with stressful events including chronic pain
  • Decreased feelings of exhaustion, irritability and anger
  • Increased feelings of self-worth and compassion towards self and others
  • Improved physical health, immunity and feelings of overall well-being
  • Feeling more connected with what really matters in your life

Who should attend
The Introduction to Mindfulness workshop is recommend for anyone curious about mindfulness and would like to learn about its core principles and experience some of the practices. This workshop is also recommended for those considering enrolling in the more intensive 8 or 9 week therapeutic programs.

Mindfulness is free from any particular faith or religious belief. Meditation experience is not required. All are welcomed!

Materials
Participants can use our meditation Zafu cushions and yoga mats during the workshop or are welcome to bring their own. Chairs will also be available. It is advisable to wear loose, comfortable causal clothing.

Fee: $35 (HST included).

In order to make the workshops accessible to everyone we have a “Generosity Policy”.  Should you find the fee an obstacle, please decide what works for you and offer whatever you can upon attendance. We appreciate any contribution you wish to offer.  Registration for the workshop is still required as space is limited.

Please be aware of our payment, cancellation and refund policies.

Completed registrations indicate understanding and acceptance of our Payment, Cancellation and Refund Policy.

CLICK HERE for our policies

Registration

Enrollment is limited as our groups are small (about 12 people). Pre-registration is required.

SEE IF INTRODUCTION TO MINDFULNESS IS CURRENTLY OFFERED/SIGN-UP

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INTRODUCTION TO MINDFUL SELF-COMPASSION – 2 Hour Workshop  

This two hour workshop offers an opportunity to learn about and experience some of the practices of self-compassion and its benefit on well-being, especially when one is suffering. Included in this workshop is an introduction to the three main components of self-compassion: Mindfulness, Self-Kindness and Common Humanity.

Self-compassion is a sensitivity towards our own suffering and the desire to alleviate it. It embodies the qualities of tenderness, comfort, kindness and connection.

Self-compassion can be learned by anyone, even those who did not receive enough affection in childhood or who feel uncomfortable when they are good to themselves. It’s a courageous attitude that stands up to harm, including the harm that we inflict on ourselves through self-criticism, self-denial, or self-absorption. Self-compassion provides emotional strength and resilience, allowing us to admit our shortcomings, forgive ourselves, motivate ourselves with kindness, care for others, and be fully human. It has also been proven to lower anxiety and depression, maintain healthy habits for well-being and lead to more satisfying personal relationships.

To learn more about self-compassion CLICK HERE.

Who should attend
This introductory self-compassion workshop is recommended for anyone interested in learning about self-compassion and beginning to develop a more caring relationship with one self, especially in times of difficulty.  This workshop is also recommended for those interested in enrolling in the more intensive 8 week Mindful Self-Compassion Program.

Materials
Participants can use our meditation Zafu cushions and yoga mats during the workshop or are welcome to bring their own. Chairs will also be available.

Fee: $35 (HST included).

In order to make the workshops accessible to everyone we have a “Generosity Policy”.  Should you find the fee an obstacle, please decide what works for you and offer whatever you can upon attendance. We appreciate any contribution you wish to offer.  Registration for the workshop is still required as space is limited.

Please be aware of our payment, cancellation and refund policies.

Completed registrations indicate understanding and acceptance of our Payment, Cancellation and Refund Policy.

CLICK HERE for our policies

Registration
Enrollment is limited as our groups are small (about 12 people). Pre-registration is required.

SEE IF INTRODUCTION TO MINDFUL SELF-COMPASSION IS CURRENTLY OFFERED/SIGN-UP

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WORKPLACE/ORGANIZATIONAL PROGRAMS

Mindfulness is an essential tool which enables people to be more effective at everything they do and more resilient to the stresses and demands they might experience in their lives, leading to more job and life satisfaction.   In addition to encouraging people to be in the present moment non-judgementally, mindfulness enhances concentration and focus as well as cultivates awareness of thoughts, emotions and sensations which help people break free of automatic, habitual reactions that are often unhelpful. This allows for the opportunity to respond in ways that are more skillful and focused on what truly matters.

With increasing demands and challenges in the workplace, mindfulness promotes employee self-care, clear and constructive communication and more collaborative workplace relationships.  These and other benefits of mindfulness have the potential to positively impact productivity, creativity and effectiveness while reducing employee absenteeism and burnout.

For a video on The Science of Mindfulness click HERE

Mindfulness helps people to:

  • Reduce stress and boost their immune system
  • Be better at decision-making & improve their problem-solving abilities
  • Have greater insight and increase their mental flexibility
  • Be better team players
  • Have more patience and compassion
  • Understand emotions better
  • Reduce pain & insomnia
  • Increase their enjoyment of life

CUSTOMIZED SEMINARS, WORKSHOPS AND RETREATS

Breathe Mindfulness Centre offers customized seminars, workshops and retreats of varied lengths and themes to workplaces and organizations seeking to learn about mindfulness or self-compassion and who are wanting to enhance job and life satisfaction along with the well-being of their employees/members/participants.  Consultation and/or coaching are also available for those workplaces and organizations interested in developing an ongoing mindfulness program or other initiatives such as setting up mindful restorative spaces for employees to reset, recharge and refocus.

All of the programs offered from the Centre are based on the evidence-based and internationally acclaimed Mindfulness Based-Stress Reduction (MBSR), Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) and Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) programs.

The components of customized programs can include mindful movement, mindful eating, mindful communication and interactions as well as mindful and self-compassion meditations. These are offered through varying methods such as practices, dyadic exercises and instruction.

Programs are typically offered on site such as your workplace, a conference venue or a wellness retreat site. Some examples of program formats are:

  • Lunch and learn (1 hour)
  • 2-hour, half or full day workshop
  • Half or full day executive retreat
  • 1 ½ hour – 2-hour sessions over a series of 4+ weeks
  • Guest speaker for your event
  • Custom designed program with a timeframe and format tailored to your unique needs.

Cost

The cost will depend on the format, length of program and number of participants.

Please Contact Us to begin to develop your customized program or for more information.


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RETREATS

Half-day and full-day silent retreats are periodically offered to facilitate the deepening of one’s practice in mindfulness and/or self-compassion.  Retreats also offer an opportunity to practice together, strengthening our sense of connection and common humanity with each other.

Who should attend
Silent retreats are open to anyone who has had previous experience with mindfulness, mindful self-compassion, meditation, alternative contemplative retreats or who have participated in any mindfulness-based programs.

Please be aware that during our silent retreats, there will be extended periods of silence and practices will be longer in duration to facilitate immersion in and deepening of one’s experience.

Materials
Participants can use our meditation Zafu cushions and yoga mats during the retreat or are welcome to bring their own. Chairs will also be available.  Comfortable clothing is recommended.

Please see individual retreat descriptions for information regarding any further materials that may be required.

Fee: Varied.

Please be aware of our payment, cancellation and refund policies.

Completed registrations indicate understanding and acceptance of our Payment, Cancellation and Refund Policy.

CLICK HERE for our policies

Registration

Enrollment is limited as our groups are small (about 12 people). Pre-registration is required.

SEE AVAILABLE RETREATS/SIGN-UP

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INDIVIDUAL COUNSELLING/SESSIONS

The core principles and practices of MBCT and MSC therapeutic programs can be tailored to offer them in private individual sessions. Individual sessions in mindfulness coaching and mindfulness-based counselling are also available for those experiencing a variety of personal and/or life challenges. Please contact the Centre directly or email clientservices@breathemindfulness.ca to set up individual sessions.

Breathe Mindfulness Centre is a division of Jacqueline Milner-Clerk & Associates Inc. which is a psychology practice offering comprehensive assessment and counselling services (conventional and contemplative) to children, adolescents, adults, couples and families experiencing a variety of issues and difficulties. Detailed information about Jacqueline Milner-Clerk & Associates Inc. can be found at www.jmcpsychology.ca or by calling (902) 461-8133.

Fees: The fee for individual therapeutic sessions is $160/session, with sessions typically being 50 minutes in duration. Although not covered by MSI, therapeutic sessions delivered by a Registered Psychologist and/or a Registered Social Worker may be covered by individual health insurance. Please contact your health insurance provider for details as to whether they cover therapeutic sessions offered by a Registered Psychologist and/or Registered Social Worker.

Government agencies such as Veteran Affairs, First Nations, RCMP and/or individual workplace EAP’s may also cover the cost of mindfulness-based therapy and such services may also be tax-deductible.

Please be aware of our payment, cancellation and refund policies.

Completed registrations indicate understanding and acceptance of our Payment, Cancellation and Refund Policy.

CLICK HERE for our policies