Mindfulness & Meditation | April 2017
April 10, 17, and 24 | 12:00-1:00 pm
Learning mindful meditation techniques can help reduce stress and improve well-being.
Want to know what to expect during the weekly mindfulness classes?
The Mindfulness & Meditation series will be lead by Dr. Caroline Boxmeyer, a Licensed Clinical Psychologist and Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine at The University of Alabama. She provides psychological services to adults, children and families in UA’s Betty Shirley Clinic. She also conducts research on best practices to promote mental health and well-being. She is currently spearheading a project teaching mindfulness and yoga practices to elementary students and their parents and is recognized as a leading researcher on the use of mind-body approaches to improve children’s health.
- Week 1: What is mindfulness and why do I need it?
- Week 2: Just breathe. Putting mindfulness into practice.
- Week 3: Be present and increasing awareness.
- Final overview: How to continue with mindfulness and resources to do so.
2017 Program Information
- You must attend all 3 sessions in order to serve as a WellBAMA Qualifying Program.
- Limited availability, so we ask that only those that can attend all sessions register for the program.
- Faculty and staff only.
Limited spaces available.
Being Mindful Can Help Reduce Stress
UA Dialog article, Published April 20, 2014
If you’re looking for ways to manage stress, relax, you’re not alone. “Surveys conducted after our WellBAMA events have shown us that managing stress is a very real concern of employees,” said Heather Mundy, coordinator in the UA Office of Health Promotion and Wellness (OHPW). “We wanted to address that with a practical solution.”
This spring, the office worked with Dr. Harriet Myers, associate professor and a clinical psychologist in the College of Community Health Sciences, to develop a new, three-class qualifying WellBAMA program, Mindfulness and Meditation.
“Mindfulness is the act of being intensely aware of what you’re sensing and feeling at every moment without interpretation or judgment,” said Myers, who also is assistant dean for medical education in CCHS. “Practicing mindfulness can help you stop spending so much time planning, thinking negative thought, and becoming overly stressed.”
Mindfulness began as a Buddhist tradition and has become recognized in recent years as a cognitive therapy that focuses on breathing, body sensations and mental relaxation. Mindfulness can help to reduce anxiety, boost mental performance, regulate emotions, fight depression and lower stress-induced inflammation in the body.
The program was so popular, OHPW plans to offer it again next year, Mundy said. For those unable to participate this year, Myers offers the following tips:
- Practice mindfulness by taking a moment to slow down, breathe and be present.
- Pay attention. The next time you meet someone, listen closely to his or her words. Develop a habit of understanding others and delaying your own judgments and criticisms.
- Make the familiar new again. Find a few small, familiar objects – such as a water bottle, apple or pen – in your home or office. Use all your senses to rediscover the object. Identify one new detail about each object that you didn’t see before.
- Go outside and enjoy nature at least one day each week.
- Increase your awareness during one daily task and try to enjoy it more.
- Disconnect. It’s hard to engage in the world around you and slow down when your head is stuck in your phone: you’re always checking new messages coming in.
- Appreciate the ordinary. Find happiness in everyday things. Life can be much more enjoyable by following this simple habit.