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You might have heard of mindfulness or even given it a go before. Meet Dr Caroline Barratt who is developing research and teaching on how mindfulness and self-compassion may help improve the well-being and resilience of professionals and students in the healthcare setting.
“Mindfulness practice is not a magic cure for fixing everything that we find difficult. But by becoming more aware of what is going on for us we can change our relationship with our thoughts, feelings and body sensations so that we are not lost within them. Over time this new perspective can help us see the best way to respond to what we are experiencing in any given moment rather than just reacting. We can then start to take better care of ourselves and those around us, particularly at times of stress like exams.”
In the run up to applying to university, many people find themselves overwhelmed with managing their commitments, their studies/work, finding work experience and everything else that life throws at them. To help you take some time for yourself, you may find these introductory guides very useful.
We’d recommend that you start with shorter practices (less than 15 minutes) so you are able to gauge your experience before trying longer ones, particularly if you are doing this without the supervision of a meditation/mindfulness teacher.
Please be aware that meditation practice can have negative side effects, particularly if you are currently experiencing acute mental health difficulties or have experienced recent trauma. If you are unsure please consult an experienced meditation teacher.
If you have enjoyed these meditations, you may like to find out more about mindfulness. On our Colchester campus we have a Mindfulness group which meets regularly during term-time throughout the academic year.
We also provide health and wellbeing support to our students, with help on coping with exam anxiety, stress, and other difficulties. Our Student Services Hub is on tap during office hours, and we also have Nightline and Residence Life available throughout the night and weekends.
You may also be interested to know that we run a 15 credit Continuing Professional Development module called ‘Mindfulness, self-compassion and compassionate care’, which is available for professionals with two years’ experience in a health or social care setting.