Breathworks training – mindfulness meditation for pain management

The world is a small place really, as I’ve found out via Twitter, Facebook and the blog – but I didn’t expect to have contact through Amazon (that wicked place that snatches $$ right out of my purse by tempting me with far too many wonderful books!).  However, I received an email today from Vidyamala Burch, who has developed Breathworks, a mindfulness meditation approach to pain management that has achieved some success.  I have used the Breathworks CD’s for some years now, both for myself and with people who have chronic pain.  They’re lovely and nondirective, ‘mindful’ and as a result help me move towards acceptance rather than trying to avoid negative experience.

Anyway, Vidyamala contacted me to say she’s coming to New Zealand (back home!) to lead a training at Mana Retreat over the first week of February.

The details are here.

And if you want some of the research backing this approach, she has several documents here.

If you’re in NZ in February, and want to spend some time for personal and professional development, this looks like a wonderful opportunity.

Here’s a pdf you can download to share amongst your colleagues.

CBT Workshop!

If you’re wanting a short, practical and interactive workshop on using cognitive and behavioural approaches for managing chronic pain, book yourself in for the CBT Workshop on 2nd, 3rd, and 4th May 2008.

This workshop is an introduction to using cognitive and behavioural approaches with people experiencing chronic pain, and is designed for occupational therapists, physiotherapists, nurses, social workers and psychologists who want to learn the practicalities of integrating this approach into daily clinical practice. The workshop is run through the Otago University, Christchurch, and is on-campus at the Christchurch Clinical School.

Participants are invited to bring ‘real’ case examples to work through, and develop skills by working within small interdisciplinary teams as part of the workshop. The interdisciplinary approach is encouraged throughout, and each person is also encouraged to participate by bringing his or her own experiences to the group. A maximum of 20 participants can enrol for the workshop, and registrations (and more details) are available from Veronica McGroggan at the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery + Musculoskeletal Medicine and her contact details are at the bottom of that page.

This will be the 5th year the workshop has been run, and alongside the fun of getting together with colleagues from around New Zealand, you also get a fully referenced workbook, and the opportunity to bring complex cases to a ‘meeting of the minds’ to learn new ways of viewing their situation.

Topics include:
– assessment and case formulation
– cognitive strategies including education/information, attention management, cognitive reframing and working with automatic thoughts
– behavioural strategies including relaxation training, biofeedback, recording and graphs, reinforcement, social modelling and time is also spent on exposure therapy for pain-related anxiety and avoidance
– motivational strategies

The workshop is pitched at an introductory level, and a more advanced and applied workshop will be run in August. This usually considers more complex presentations, and further developing and refining clinical techniques of cognitive therapy.