Mindfulness and Compassion: Enhancing Practice and Personal Wellbeing
Susan Pollak, EdD, MTS

July 24 – 28, 2017 • Monday – Friday

See Accreditation


Meditation is a systematic method of regulating attention and emotion—beneficial skills for alleviating mental and physical disorders in patients, and for enhancing the wellbeing of clinicians and cultivating positive attitudes associated with patient care.


“Mindfulness” is the term currently used in the scientific literature to describe diverse forms of meditation, including focused attention, open monitoring, and compassion training. Most recently, compassion training is being carefully studied and supported by neuroscientific and clinical research. What is mindfulness, really? What is compassion? How do we integrate mindfulness and compassion training into psychotherapy, especially in the treatment of anxiety, depression, and destructive emotions? Can it help with pain? How can we apply it to daily life? What scientific evidence supports its use and what are the contraindications? This seminar is an up-to-date review of the theory and practice of mindfulness, compassion, and self -compassion from its ancient origins to modern brain science and psychotherapy.


Participants with no meditation experience, as well as seasoned practitioners, will find this course helpful in their clinical work and in their daily lives. More and more psychotherapists and their patients are interested in bringing the power of mindfulness, compassion, and self-compassion into their clinical work. But how does one actually do that? This seminar shows the way. This seminar will introduce a variety of mindfulness practices that clinicians and their clients can use to develop the core skills of concentration, open monitoring, and compassionate acceptance. Emphasis will be on working with common issues such as anxiety, depression, pain, trauma, and working with destructive thoughts and emotions. It will include lectures, experiential exercises, Q & A, and case discussion. This seminar is designated for anyone with an interest in the integration of meditation and psychotherapy, either personally or professionally.


Upon completion of this seminar, participants will be able to:


  • Identify the four main forms of meditation— concentration, mindfulness, compassion and equanimity—and know when to apply them in clinical settings and in daily life;
  • Explain how mindfulness and acceptance-based treatment is grounded in empirically-supported psychotherapy;
  • Evaluate new research findings on mind/brain training through mindfulness and compassion meditation;
  • Customize meditation practices for individual patients and specific populations, i.e., those with anxiety, depression, pain, trauma, and destructive thoughts and emotion;
  • Apply the practices and principles of meditation to enhance the therapeutic relationship and personal wellbeing;
  • Discuss the ways mindfulness can be distorted when it enters the mainstream;
  • Discuss how mindfulness meditation can change the brain;
  • Evaluate the benefits of Mindful Self Compassion as the newest Mindfulness-Based Intervention;
  • Explain how Mindfulness and Compassion has help with destructive emotions and behavior, decreasing suicidal risk;
  • Determine whether Mindful Self Compassion can help those with chronic pain;
  • Explain how Mindfulness and Compassion can help with the stress of parenting.




Monday July 24, 2017

  • Overview of mindfulness: definitions, types of meditation, history in clinical practice. introductory practice.
  • Q &A
  • Why does mindfulness work? brain mechanisms, default mode network, future directions of research.
  • What happens when mindfulness enters the mainstream?
  • Q&A

Tuesday July 25, 2017

  • The Core Skills: focusing the mind. the benefits of developing concentration, practice, clinical, application.
  • Q & A
  • Open monitoring, expanding the mind.
  • What are the benefits? Practice, clinical application
  • Q & A

Wednesday July 26, 2017

  • Opening the heart: loving kindness and compassion. How and why do we train these skills?  Practice, clinical application
  • Q & A
  • Equanimity: finding balance, the benefits of this skill. Practice. Clinical application
  • Q & A

Thursday July 27, 2017

  • Clinical Applications
  • Mindful Self-Compassion—The Newest MBI
  • Q & A
  • Working with anxiety, depression, and destructive emotions: how mindfulness and compassion can help. Clinical application
  • Q & A


Friday July 28, 2017

  • Working with specific populations
  • Q & A
  • Break
  • Self compassion for parents
  • Q & A