West Park Hospital
Edward Pease Way
Tel: 01325 552017
Lead contact: Jo Cromarty
Do you suffer with repeated episodes of depression?
Are you stressed by caring for, or parenting, someone with mental ill health?
Many of us spend a lot of time brooding about the past, worrying about the future, and being hard on ourselves. These habits of mind are difficult to control and often leave us feeling stressed and low.
Mindfulness can help…
What is mindfulness?
This short animation film explains what mindfulness is.
Mindfulness is a particular way of paying attention to the present moment. When we’re tuned in to the present moment, the mind is less likely to get caught up in unhelpful patterns of thinking and feeling.
Mindfulness helps us become more aware of our thoughts and emotions and relate to them in a different way. We learn skills that can help us to:
- become more focussed and steady
- feel less overwhelmed
- respond more wisely to difficulties and stress.
Mindfulness can also help us learn to be kinder to ourselves and more accepting of how things are.
‘Staying present’ is not easy– especially when we’re feeling stressed, or miserable. With patience and practice we can all learn to be more mindful more often.
Members of the Trust mindfulness team explain a little more in this short film clip.
The following audio clip will take you through a brief mindfulness meditation which may help you to understand more about mindfulness. It’s best to do this meditation sitting in a chair, at a time when you know you won’t be interrupted.
Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) courses combines two great approaches; mindfulness and cognitive behavioural therapy. Our MBCT courses are a great way to understand thought patterns and how to work with these in more helpful ways. We are currently delivering these courses on line.
You will learn and practise simple meditations and other activities that can help you to:
- be more aware of your thoughts and feelings
- be kinder to yourself
- respond more wisely to difficulties and stress
The following film shares the personal experiences of some who have attended courses at a different NHS centre and the benefits they have experienced.
Who can take part?
Our online courses are available to adults (aged 18+) living in County Durham and Darlington, Teesside and most of North Yorkshire, who:
- have experienced repeated episodes of depression
- are stressed by parenting or caring for someone with mental ill health or a learning disability.
What is a mindfulness course like?
The course includes eight sessions lasting two hours and one longer session. Sessions normally take place over consecutive weeks.
In the sessions you will learn and practice some fairly simple meditations, for example focusing attention on your breathing for periods of time. The teacher will be a qualified mental health professional who is also experienced in teaching mindfulness.
The course takes a lot of time and effort and involves practising the meditations at home on a daily basis. It is important to attend regularly and to practise the approach at home every day.
What is the evidence?
MBCT has been thoroughly researched and is recommended by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) for people who suffer from recurrent depression. There is also good evidence that learning mindfulness can be helpful for people who are stressed.
How do I take part?
To find out more about mindfulness and the course we offer you can attend an online taster session. After this you can apply for the nine week course and we will discuss this in more detail with you with a telephone appointment. Online services are via Microsoft Teams.
Online taster sessions
- Wednesday 20 April, 10am – 12noon
- Tuesday 3 May, 10am – 12noon
- Monday mornings, 11am – 1.15pm, 16 May to 11 July, with a practice day on 27 June, 9.30am – 2.30pm
- Monday evenings, 6pm – 8.15pm, 16 May to 11 July, with a practice day on 27 June, 9.30am – 2.30pm
- Tuesday mornings, 10am – 12.15pm, 17 May to 12 July, with a practice day on 28 June, 9.30am – 2.30pm
- Wednesday mornings, 10am – 12.15pm, 18 May to 13 July, with a practice day on 29 June, 9.30am – 2.30pm
Online half day of mindfulness
- Dates to be confirmed
Online practice group
If you have attended one of our courses in the past, you would be very welcome to join our online ‘practice group’ sessions. These regular 45 minute sessions are an opportunity to do some practice with other people and to re-visit some themes of the course. Everyone will be very welcome, including people who haven’t done any practice for years! The sessions will be led by members of the mindfulness team.
If you are interested in registering for these, please email us at email@example.com with PRACTICE GROUP as the subject heading.
You may find some of the following resources helpful:
Headspace is a very popular and high quality app.
Oxford Mindfulness Centre
Free mindfulness is hosted by Peter Morgan, one of our team members, and includes many useful resources including practices, poetry and links to other sites
The Mindfulness Network
The Mindfulness Network site includes links to other free online practice groups relating to the Covid-19 pandemicDownload flyer for this service
L955, v37, 19/05/21, archive 18/05/24