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MALAYSIA'S FIRST & ONLY STRUCTURED MINDFULNESS-BASED PROGRAM WHICH IS SUPPORTED BY THE MINISTRY OF HEALTH (MYSIHAT) AND LOCAL RESEARCH (UPM, UM, UKM, SUNWAY U, NUS)...

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Mindfulness Programs at Sunway Medical Centre (SunMed)

NOW - group and individual mindfulness-based training at Sunway Medical Centre (SunMed). Finally, in Malaysia, we're able to have something similar to Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn's Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program. Feel free to contact Dr. Phang (pckar39011@gmail.com) to customize a program for your personal and organizational needs.





For more information & FAQ - HERE


Friday, November 20, 2015

Elective Posting (Psychiatry) in MINDFULGym Program - Dr. Shamini


"When I look back, I believe my mindfulness practice did me some good in terms of boosting my immune system. So, mindfulness meditation (and NOT medications) helped me to recover naturally from this common illness (flu) which I used to get frequently."

I am a final year master trainee in psychiatry and I attended the 6-week MINDFULGym workshop as part of my elective posting. The reason I chose this workshop is because I was curious with mindfulness practices and its benefits, and decided to undertake it myself to experience this practice.The workshop has taught me a lot of things that I usually unaware of. Now, I am  more aware of the effect of stress on myself. Even though I knew that I was experiencing stress, I was not fully aware of what it did to my mind and body.

By practicing mindfulness, I am able to recognize the stress reactions in my mind and body. I have become more aware of the effect of stress on my mind (unfocused thoughts) and body (tension in my neck), and employ the various MINDFULGym tools to help alleviate these symptoms. Although previously I was aware of stress, I dealt with it in a way which lacks self-kindness. For instance, when I was stressed out, I would compulsively keep myself busy by thinking more or harder, assuming that this would solve all my problems. This resulted in more stress, self-criticism, and low self-esteem whenever I fall short of ideas to resolve my problems. By practising mindfulness, I am able to bring more care and attention to my mind/body and want to treat it better for health.

I realized that in the month that I started practicing mindfulness, I became less sick with flu and sore throat, especially during the haze season. I did get two attacks of sore throat. But unlike my usual sore throat experience, which would require antibiotics and lasts for a week, this time it resolved within two days - without antibiotics. I usually had to go on an antibiotic course to prevent laryngitis and loosing my voice. I was also less feverish and did not require vitamin C prophylaxis. When I look back, I believe my mindfulness practice did me some good in terms of boosting my immune system. So, mindfulness meditation (and NOT medications) helped me to recover naturally from this common illness (flu) which I used to get frequently.


"The workshop has taught me a lot of things that I usually unaware of. Now, I am  more aware of the effect of stress on myself. Even though I knew that I was experiencing stress, I was not fully aware of what it did to my mind and body."

In sum, I am very glad to have found a practice to help me cope with stress in my life. Otherwise, I would have submitted myself to frequently being sick with the common cold. I especially appreciate the “being kind to yourself” part of mindfulness training (instead of being self-critical). I realized that I am the hardest critic of myself, and this is not helpful at all for my self-esteem and problem solving ability.

Another thing which I like about the program is the brevity and simplicity of the practice in mindfulness. This is important for me as I have short attention span and busy daily schedule. For me, it is the small micro steps, instead of big steps, that I appreciate to bring about positive changes in my lifestyle.

Thank you for the opportunity to join this wonderful programme.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

7 Things NOT Helpful To Say: Communicating Mindfully With A Person With Depression


Depression is a severe medical condition that affects the way we think, feel, and act. Despite with good intention, we sometimes say things that are unhelpful or may worsen a person's depression:

1.  Don’t be lazy, you’re wasting your time!

Why not?: Excessive tiredness is a common symptom of depression. "Lazy" implies that the person is having an attitude problem or making it up.
Mindful response: It must be very frustrating feeling tired all the time and unable to do the things you want to do...

2.  It’s your bad kamma - do more good!

Why not?: This may induce or worsen guilt feeling which is part of depression. It may also trigger thoughts of uselessness, "I'm not good enough."
Mindful response:  Bad things sometimes do happen in life and nobody really knows why. Let’s see how we can move on together…

3.  Nothing is impossible; think positive and be strong.

Why not?: Having depression is not a sign of weakness. Many great people in the world had depression.
Mindful response: It must be really tough going through all the difficulties. Maybe you’re too strong for too long…

4.  How long more you want to be depressed?!

Why not?: Being depressed is not a choice. We don't tell a person with cancer, "How long more do want to be cancerous?"
Mindful response: Wow! You’ve been struggling for so long. I wonder how you manage to cope…

5.  Be grateful.  You’re already very lucky; many are worse.

Why not?: This may be invalidating or disrespecting the emotional pain of a depressed person. They may also think, "Ya, I'm so useless/ungrateful. People can cope and move on, but I can't. Terrible me!"
Mindful response: It’s unfortunate that so many bad things had happened to you. Let’s see how we can work on them…

6.  Why are you so weak? You think you’re the only one with problems?!

Why not?: Obviously, he/she is not coping well, despite others may be having the same problems and are able to cope. Else, he/she won't be suffering from depression.
Mindful response: Ya, life sometimes can be terrible. I’m also going through some challenges…

7.  Stop pretending to be depressed!

Why not?: Nobody chooses or pretends to have cancer. Similarly, depression, as a medical condition, is NOT a choice. 
Mindful response: Perhaps you don’t have to try so hard pretending to be happy. Sometimes, it’s OK not to be ok…


In brief, try to be a good listener, understanding, empathetic, and supportive (e.g. offer tissue paper for crying, give a gentle pat on the shoulder). 


"What should I do if I or somebody has depression?"
"12 ways to encourage a person with depression to seek help"

Kindly refer to the book, "I'm still Human: Understanding Depression With Kindness."



Saturday, November 7, 2015

Mindful Body Scan & Kindness - 1 second


Allow your attention to rest on different parts of the body with curiosity and gentleness. As you sweep your attention to different body parts, you may imagine and associate something positive, happy, or healthy to the body parts (e.g. flower blooming, butterfly fluttering, smiley image, waves cleansing, saying "Thank You" to the organs, etc.) 


Mindful Body Scan & Kindness - 5 seconds



Allow your attention to rest on different parts of the body with curiosity and gentleness. As you sweep your attention to different body parts, you may imagine and associate something positive, happy, or healthy to the body parts (e.g. flower blooming, butterfly fluttering, smiley image, waves cleansing, saying "Thank You" to the organs, etc.). 

Mindful Body Scan & Kindness - 3 seconds


Allow your attention to rest on different parts of the body with curiosity and gentleness. As you sweep your attention to different body parts, you may imagine and associate something positive, happy, or healthy to the body parts (e.g. flower blooming, butterfly fluttering, smiley image, waves cleansing, saying "Thank You" to the organs, etc.) 

Sunday, November 1, 2015

MINDFULGym in Hospital Serdang

 

Congratulations to Matron Hee for her recent award for most outstanding nursing research on MINDFULGym program for nurses...


The 5-week MINDFULGym program was conducted for the critical care nurses at Hospital Serdang (January - April, 2013) as part of their Continuing Nursing Education. The program was initiated by Matron Hee Kim Lan and supported by the Hospital's Nursing Department. About 40 nurses graduated from the program and data on the effectiveness of the program has been published in the Australian Journal of Advanced Nursing - HERE. Congratulations to Matron Hee for successfully introducing the meaningful program to the nurses, and completing her masters in nursing studies.

Full paper - HERE.