The MBSR Playbook for Do-It-Yourself Well-Being
The path to well-being is well known. Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), first developed by Jon Kabat-Zinn in 1979 at the University of Massachusetts, is proven to dramatically improve well-being and transform lives.
People start with very challenging conditions including chronic disease, emotional and psychological disorders. After completing the course people report wonderful outcomes like “My anxiety decreased tremendously” or “My whole perspective of life has changed”. Tens of thousands of people have completed an MBSR course. Science validates the positive results in hundreds of published research reports.
But it’s not easy. Learning something new is hard, especially when it takes a while for new skills to develop that generate these life-changing benefits. This may be obvious, but the factor most critical to success is the cumulative effort necessary to establish new practices which in turn create the positive outcomes.
The MBSR Playbook addresses that challenge by outlining each step / activity of the course in a Journey Map. In one sense the learning and practicing activities are the “plays” themselves. In sports and many other areas of life including education we know how to plan and execute plays designed to produce particular outcomes. In another way we want to be playful and gentle with ourselves learning new methods exploring our moment-to-moment experience.
The playbook complements the free, online, self-paced MBSR course developed by Dave Potter at palousemindfulness/play. All of the content for the course; readings, audio files and videos are on the Palouse website. The playbook contains all of the formal and informal worksheets in a day planner format that makes it easy to plan, track and write notes about all the activities, one step, one day at a time. While the playbook is designed for a commitment of 50 hours over 8 weeks for a typical MBSR course, it also works when people take breaks between days or stages for whatever reason.
The Journey Map offers a concrete, proven path to dramatically improved well-being. The playbook both directs your activities and records your experience. But of course, only you can carve out the time and take these steps right in the middle of your everyday life. This playbook is a gift you give yourself. Hold it close and take it with you on your journey.
May you welcome MBSR into your life, express yourself fully, overcome obstacles and learn to feast happily on your own life, in this moment, right here right now!
Scientifically valid research confirms MBSR works for these conditions:
- Chronic pain
- Migraine headaches
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Respiratory disorders
- Heart disease
The last activity in the course is to write a Letter of Learning to receive a Certificate of Completion. In these letters, available on the website, Palouse course graduates report:
- “I feel calm and in control.”
- “I’m calmer, more level-headed, grounded, happier.”
- “My anxiety decreased tremendously.”
- “I’m less afraid and angry about body pain.”
- “My anxiety decreased sleep better.”
- “I learned to love myself.”
- “I feel more connected to life.”
- “Forever changed and enhanced my life.”
- “My whole perspective of life has changed.”
- “I feel a deep sense of gratitude.”
The path to well-being is well known. The biggest obstacle is simply completing the journey. Follow the steps on the website. See the well-being show up in your life!
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