Skillfully designed for mindful living in modern lives...

Photo Banner



Sunday, September 28, 2014

Mindful Parenting Group

The concept of mindful parenting is rather new and it was introduced to the group of enthusiastic parents in Kinrara Metta Buddhist Association (KMBA) on the 29th June of 2014. The introductory session illustrated the source of parenting stress, understanding of mindfulness in parenting and ways of to practice mindful parenting. The talk received good responses by the audiences. This served as a good foundation to call upon the group of parents to participate the subsequent training sessions, namely the Mindful Parenting Group. 

There were four sessions conducted throughout the month of July and August. A total of approximate 30 interested parents participated the group training. The group was given training on how to apply mindfulness skills in relating to their children. The topics that were delivered include automatic parenting, self-compassion, applying beginner’s mind in parenting, understanding the influences of family system in parenting, responding vs reacting to parenting stress. Group discussion, group activity, role play and demonstration were used to present the content in order to promote better understanding among the parents.

The content of the delivered topics are summarized as below:

  • -    Automatic Parenting: Understanding how parenting process can become “automatic” that parents learn “reacting” instead of “responding” to daily stressors.

  • -       Self-compassion: Understanding and applying the self-compassion onto parents themselves that to allow space for further improvement.

  • -        Beginner’s mind in parenting: Using new perspectives to observe and understand our children, learn to see them as ‘raisin.’

  • -       Family system in parenting: Learning on how parent’s family of origin could limit the parenting experiences and understanding the subtle influences of how parents were influenced by their past upbringing experiences

  • -        Reacting vs responding to parenting stress: Understanding how parents could react or respond to their children’s problems based on their own expectations and belief system.

The group members were enthusiastic and passionate about learning. They were taught about the concepts of automatic parenting and being guided on how to be aware of their body sensations. In the sessions, parents were guided on reflecting themselves in their parenting role, learning about how to apply beginner’s mind in perceiving their children, applying self-compassion on themselves when they made mistakes, and practicing to respond to their children’s needs with awareness. The group members were also given home practice in order to apply the learnt skills on their parenting experiences.

Being the trainer, I felt honored that I have been given this opportunity to conduct the group sessions in KMBA. Throughout the process, I learnt that this group is a unique group that the participants are truthful and kind to each other. I sensed the group’s respect for each other, especially every time when there was someone shared about him/herself. I like the way the group members encouraged each other by giving space and being patience to listen and take turn to share. Although it was a rather big group for group processing, I felt pleasant and relax that the parents were mindful about the group process and learning to express themselves. I am thankful to all the participants who made this group process as a meaningful learning experience for each other.

Prepared by,
Clinical Psychologist
KL Buddhist Mental Health Association

Monday, September 1, 2014

MINDFULGym Booster (August, 2014)

Mindful-Gym Booster Session

Date                :           16th August, 2014 (Saturday)
Time                :           3.00 pm – 6.00 pm
Venue              :           Lecture Hall, Brickfields Maha Vihara, KL

No. of participants:      24

The MINDFULGym Booster Session was successfully organized by Catherine, Eng Chong and Jasmine.  This session was open to all the Mindful-Gym graduates (Batch 1 - 8). The main objective was to provide opportunity for revising what had been learned in the 5-week Mindful-Gym program. 

Activities were carried out in fun and meaningful ways. The session started with a 55-minute movie sharing - “Room to Breath.”  This is a movie on application of mindfulness in a high school setting for attention and emotional regulation. Students were taught mindful hearing, mindful body, mindful breathing, mindful eating and purposeful thinking, i.e. sending good wishes to themselves and others.  

After the movie and tea-break, we had ice-breaking. The participants were divided into 3 groups, which were named after the MINDFULGym slogan (Be Present, Be Calm, and Be Grateful). The leaders for the groups were Dr. Phang (Be Present), Sis. Mi Yen (Be Calm) ,and Madam. Tan WK (Be Grateful). In the ice breaking, they were required to remember one another's name and respond to the following questions: 

1.      Share one main message that you've learned  from the movie
2.      Name one of the tools taught in Mindful School program
3.      Give one benefit of practicing mindfulness.
4.      What is the training definition of mindfulness?
5.      What is the slogan of Mindful-gym?
6.      Name one of the tools taught in MINDFULGym
7.      Name one of the thinking errors taught in MINDFULGym
8.      Tell us one thing that went well for the past one week


You'll be gently & mindfully hammered if you don't get the correct answer...

More revision of MINDFULGym tools through games:

That was just warming up...

After forming a big circle, a durian was passed around while a song related to mindfulness was playing. When the song stopped, the person holding the durian would pick a piece of paper. Written on the paper was one of the several questions/tasks designed for reminding them to practice mindfulness:
  • Choose a mindful stretching posture (PMR style) & lead the group in practice
  • Demonstrate deep & mindful breathing (i.e. gi gong style) & lead the group in practice
  • Sing the song, “Happiness is here and now” & get others to sing along
  • Lead the group in practicing 'Mindful-S.T.O.P.'
  • Share an example of how you apply 'A.A.M.' (Accept, Adjust & Move On) in life
  • Radiate kindness with the song, "Rasa Sayang" (MINDFULGym version) 

Yeah, got gifts one...

A gift (e.g. smiley ball) was given to the person who could answer the question or perform the task well. Durian was used in the game (instead of a ball) to reinforce mindful attention to touch sensations. This was followed by gratitude training through 3-Gratitude Cards.

Before the end of the session, Dr. Phang shared with us on a new Mindful-Gym tool. It is known as “Goggle-WWW-WhatsApp” [Google/mentally search for someone 'Who Wish Wellness' (WWW), and WhatsApp positive wishes to the person. This is a simple way of remind ourselves to cultivate loving-kindness (Metta). May you be well & happy.