Mindfulness Training: An Inside Job!
Delivering multi-week applied mindfulness programs for the workplace, and mental health and addictions, based on Andrew Safer’s 50+ years of mindfulness practice and 25+ years as a mindfulness instructor.
Mindfulness is a practice that cultivates present-moment awareness and nonjudgment. In the formal practice, we train ourselves to bring our attention back once we’ve noticed our mind has taken a holiday from now, immersed in thought. And it’s a great way to get to know our own mind! This insight is available to us whether we’re having a disagreement with our partner, or cutting a carrot.
To explore mindfulness–whether you are a beginner or an experienced practitioner–check out “Mindfulness and Awareness” and “Anxiety Stress and Mindfulness” below…
For a list of our ongoing mindfulness practice sessions throughout the week, free and open to the public, scroll down to the bottom of this page.
A Teacher’s Experience
Mindful, June 9, 2022
An interview with Andrew Safer
Changing Your Relationship to Thoughts:
A Meditation Exercise
June 6, 2022, Mindful
Honoured for Mindful to publish this! (Click:) https://www.mindful.org/a-mindfulness-practice-for-changing-your-relationship-to-thoughts/?utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook&utm_campaign=organic_link_post
Podcast: “Mindfulness Practice and Practicality”
Released May 29th by Co-Creating Peace (Oregon and New Mexico). Kathleen Oweegon, Host; Andrew Safer, Guest.
Working with difficult emotions through Mindfulness
Self-Criticism / Judgment and Lovingkindness and Non-Judgment
“Opening the Present”–Kathleen Oweegon
And more: CLICK BELOW FOR PART 2
Podcast: “Mindfulness Practice and Practicality”
Released May 23rd by Co-Creating Peace (Oregon and New Mexico). Kathleen Oweegon, Host; Andrew Safer, Guest.
What Is Mindfulness? – Breath Awareness Meditation Instruction
A 53-Year-Old Story About Beginning Meditation Practice
Common Obstacles to Meditation
Developing a Daily Practice
Dealing with Difficult Feelings and Emotions (Anxiety)
And more…CLICK HERE FOR PART 1: https://www.buzzsprout.com/1554039/10664660
Complimentary Sessions for Podcast Listeners
Mindfulness and Awareness; Anxiety and Stress
For more information, call or email Andrew (contact info below); to register, click https://bit.ly/asmreg2022
Journal Article Published
“Navigating anxiety and stress through mindfulness: cultivating mindfulness and awareness in a community-based setting.”
Co-Authored by Martha Traverso-Yepez, PhD, Faculty of Medicine, Memorial University and Andrew Safer, Founder, Safer Mindfulness Inc. and published in the Journal of Psychology and Cognition, 2017.
“Stress and anxiety are afflicting Canadians at all ages significantly impacting their health and
well-being. In this article, we argue that community-based non-medical alternatives are needed
to relieve pressure from the health care system, provide wellness-based solutions that do not rely
on medication and empower the individual to assume a primary role in self-care. We present the
evaluation of the 8 week “Navigating Anxiety and Stress through Mindfulness” program aimed
to assist individuals who identify problematic anxiety and/or stress by providing training in
mindfulness-awareness meditation and related practices. Mindfulness training involves relating
with precision and accuracy to whatever arises in one’s state of mind or in the surroundings;
awareness training fosters openness and a greater connection to the environment. Rather than
regarding anxiety and stress as problems to be gotten rid of, participants were coached to relate
to these experiences non-judgmentally, with openness, curiosity and an interest in learning from
them. Evaluation data from five groups (40 participants) indicated a 40.4% improvement in
scores. Participants’ self-reports indicated significant improvement in their ability to interrupt
storylines (discursive thought patterns), rumination, not being fully present and their ability
to accept things as they are, ranging from 25% to 60%. It is evident that participants found
mindfulness-awareness meditation and related practices beneficial. Their evaluation responses
showed significant understanding of the key elements of mindfulness and that they had begun
integrating mindfulness into their lives. The majority developed a regular home meditation
practice. The program proved to be viable in a community-based setting.”
“Making Friends with Yourself”
Andrew Safer giving a talk on “Making Friends with Yourself” at the Winter Mindfulness-Awareness Meditation Retreat on March 18 at the Virginia Waters Retreat Centre. Photo: Courtesy Yvonne O’Keefe
Mindfulness Meets Ukraine
Mindfulness Meets Ukraine
As the pain of the world stretches, an unforgiving wind whips through the trees.
The conflagration that is supposedly not a war feeds off every spare moment. Like an enormous wave we don’t even see, it’s skulking in the background of everything we do.
There is the helplessness, the massiveness. Where can we bring our cup of tea for a break?
Thoughts of violence towards the perpetrator vanish as quickly as they came, like the wind outside, not taking root anywhere.
Even though there is no goal in mindfulness practice, over time, we’ve often wondered what good it is to simply sit with our thoughts, and, over and over again, come back to the present. We spend a lot of time with our thoughts! Our fantasies, plans, fears, worries, ambitions, and struggles appear on the big screen of our mind. Gradually, instead of messing with them when they appear, non-judgmental acceptance has us accommodating our “guests”. The great Zen master Suzuki Roshi instructed,
“Leave your front door and your back door open. Allow your thoughts to come and go. Just don’t serve them tea.”
He was telling us not to schmooze with our thoughts–priceless advice considering the tendency to get caught in the quagmire of polarization, attitudes, opinions, and beliefs.
We are still very much roiled by it all, without imploding.
Mindfulness helps, but doesn’t supply answers; it’s a way to be. At Internet speeds, the latest ruptures find us behind our defenses, at home. Sitting ducks for bad news, we could hold on to each disaster that surfaces, but instead, we bear witness, enabling kindness and compassion, which know no bounds.
If we centralize on ourselves, we connect ego, “me”, to the disaster, and our association becomes long-lasting. A very different response is to de-centralize. We feel the anguish, the dread, bigtime, but we are not a separate, isolated unit. There are many, many others who are in the same boat, and the gate to compassion swings open.
Not insulating ourselves from the pain that is Ukraine and Russia, and also not sinking in the quicksand of fear and panic, let us find space in between.
Mind Body Soul Interview with Andrew Safer
Gary Summers with Mind Body Soul interviewed Andrew Safer on Mindfulness. The interview is posted on this page.
Get Through the Pandemic!–with Mindfulness
Starts March 3rd
To register: https://bit.ly/pandemicmindfulnessreg
In-Person/Zoom Winter Retreat
Social Work Students Focused on Research
February 9, 2022–Andrew Safer presented to third-year Social Work students at Memorial University on evaluations used in his Mental Health and Addictions and Workplace Mindfulness programs, as well as outcomes. Professor Hazel Russell related what was presented to the class’ research focus.
Mindfulness Training for a Canadian Health Organization
Andrew conducted a 4-session weekly program for a Canadian health organization, ending in late November. Participant comments included:
“Helps me remain calm, especially during stressful situations.”
“1. My mind is often racing as I go to sleep; mindfulness has helped me deal with this. I fall asleep faster or if I wake up and my mind is racing, I can go back to sleep much quicker.
2. I also felt anxious at work around group tension – I have used mindfulness to let go quicker of things I cannot control.”
At the last session, participants’ average rating of the training was 9.5 out of 10.
To view outcomes, click here.
Anxiety, Stress & Mindfulness Workshop Series
Beginning January 26th
There is one free seat left! (January 19th)
From Canadian Mental Health Association-NL’s web site:
Suicide Prevention Through Mindfulness Training:
Canadian Mental Health Association–NL and Safer Mindfulness Inc. provided four one-hour follow-up sessions in September and October, 3.5 months after the completion of the 8-week Suicide Prevention Through Mindfulness Training program.
Participants were asked to rate the intensity of their suicidal thoughts at the first and last sessions of the 8-week program, and the last follow-up session. There was a 41.8 per cent improvement between first and last sessions for the 8 participants who completed the program, and a 40 per cent improvement for 5 participants between the beginning of the program and the end of the follow up. This suggests that they mostly held on to their gains during the 3.5-month intervening period.
Andrew Safer and Dr. Janna Rosales, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, Memorial University, presented a Zoom-based webinar on November 17th to American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) educators, graduate students, professional engineers, and academic administrators across the US.
Twenty-three per cent of those present were regular mindfulness practitioners, and 30 per cent said they practice occasionally in a poll. The 90-minute webinar focused on mindfulness, mindfulness practice, and key intersections with engineering, such as in contemplative education and in problem solving.
Fall Mindfulness Meditation Retreat
Mindful Youth Institute
September–Andrew Safer is now an Advisory Board member of the Mindful Youth Institute of Pueblo, Colorado, joining his extensive work with both youth and mindfulness over three decades.
Royal Newfoundland Constabulary
Mindfulness for Depression
Learn how awareness of your thoughts and feelings can save a whole pile of grief!
To review the outcomes from the Mindfulness for Depression pilot, click here.
June 2–A sampling of evidence-based research showing the effectiveness of Mindfulness practice for a range of mental health and addictions issues:
Presentation to College Students in India
Andrew Safer presented to Own Your Growth, an organization representing students from 20+ colleges across India whose focus is on wholistsic health. The presentation on “Anxiety, Stress & Mindfulness” went live on June 22nd.
Workshop Series Starting July 20
[To register, click here: http://bit.ly/asm2021reg]
After completing the three-month “Anxiety, Stress & Mindfulness” program in Fall 2019, through a partnership with Canadian Mental Health Association—NL, participants explained what difference Mindfulness is making in their lives ……………………………………….
- “Practicing mindfulness is a good way of pulling me out of the past or future, which triggers anxiety, and back to the present moment, which I can cope with better.”
- “The practice significantly helped me to interrupt the stories and my mind from spiralling out of control.”
- “I find I am less reactive to everyday irritants and my perspective has expanded.”
22 participants indicated an average 33% improvement (from the first session to the last) in confidence in their ability to deal with thoughts that bring on anxiety. Feeling that they have control over their thoughts, moods, and feelings increased by 32%. The belief that they can make a difference in their own lives rose by 32%.
In-Person Summer Meditation Retreat in July
To Register: http://bit.ly/summerretreat2021
Note: (June 3) Overnight accommodations are no longer available. Daytime participation is still open.
Mindfulness Training for Suicide Prevention
May 12 – June 30
10th Anniversary Celebration!!
We have been meeting for Monday Night Meditation since April 2011, so it only seemed right to mark 10 years at this! On April 12th, 12 of us met at The Lantern and 10 more joined us on Zoom.
The evening included mindfulness practice, strawberry shortcake, toasts, a reading on”The Stairway to Enlightenment”, and of course, discussion!
Anxiety, Stress & Mindfulness Course
Starts March 9th
To register: http://bit.ly/asm2021reg
Mindfulness for Physicians
Andrew Safer presented a 1.5-hour workshop to (physician) residents on Resident Awareness Day, Memorial University, on February 12th, for the Professional Residents Association of Newfoundland and Labrador.
Article Published in Mindful
“Meditation” on CBC Radio–Cross Talk
On January 25th, Andrew Safer appeared with Dr. Karen Bulmer, Music Department, Memorial University, on Cross Talk with Ramona Dearing. The topic? Meditation and Mindfulness. Have a listen: https://www.cbc.ca/listen/live-radio/1-89-cross-talk/clip/15820678-meditation
Winter Mindfulness Meditation Retreat
Saturday, February 27 & Sunday, February 28
To register, click: http://bit.ly/safer2021
Pandemic Anxiety & Stress–Mindfulness Workshop Series
Registration Form: https://bit.ly/asmwinter2021reg
“Staggering Under the Weight of Anxious Thoughts”–Andrew Safer
Mindful magazine Winter 2020
Fall Retreat–Starting October 24th
Engineers and Geoscientists Learn Mindfulness for the Workplace During Pandemic
October 7, 2020
Eighty-four certificates of completion were awarded to professional engineers, geoscientists, and engineering students who attended the workshop series “How to build professional resilience through mindfulness training: A four-part PEGNL professional development series for engineering & geoscience professionals and students.”…(Click here)
Safer Mindfulness Press Release
September 3, 2020
People with Depression Find Relief in Mindfulness Training During Pandemic
ST JOHN’S, NL September 3, 2020 – Women and men with depression who participated in a pilot mindfulness training program based in St. John’s completed it with significantly lower levels of anxiety and depression symptoms, and significantly higher levels of mindfulness and psychological well-being…(Click here)
To read the Evaluation Report, click here.
Upcoming Mindfulness Training Program – Starts 9/24
[For information about the upcoming workshop series, “Mindfulness and Awareness!”, please scroll down.]
Safer Mindfulness instruction and training: For dealing with the narrator in our heads, relentless parade of thoughts and preoccupations, our reactivity, bewildering emotions, habitual ways we do things, and our perpetual busyness.
Through mindfulness-awareness meditation and related practices–which can be done anywhere, anytime–we begin to develop a way of being that is rooted in sanity and simplicity. We begin to discover insight, intelligence, and compassion, which, as it turns out, have been with us all along!
(For “Mindfulness for Depression”, and Online Mindfulness Practice Sessions, please scroll down.)
Safer Mindfulness Specializes in Multi-Week Applied Mindfulness Training Programs
- Typically 1.5-hr. weekly sessions (5 to 12 weeks)
- We introduce mindfulness in the context of addictions, anxiety and stress, depression, and the workplace.
- Presentations, discussions in pairs and in the group, and Q&A
- “Homework”: Mindfulness practice and readings
- Meet via Zoom video conferencing—join from any location–or in person
Click here for Program descriptions and evaluation outcomes.
Navigate Anxiety & Stress: The Mindful Way!
July 9 – August 20
For individual session themes, see Sessions 1-6, below poster.
For Evaluation Outcomes from the Winter/Spring “Anxiety, Stress & Mindfulness” series, click here.
Summer Mindfulness Retreat
A partnership between the Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Newfoundland and Labrador (PEGNL); Dr. Janna Rosales, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, Memorial University; and Andrew Safer / Safer Mindfulness. Funded through an Accelerator grant, Memorial University.
June 16 – July 17, 1:00 – 2:00 pm via Zoom
“Professional Resilience Through Mindfulness Training”
Session #1: Stress, Uncertainty & Mindfulness
Session #2: How Mindfulness Can Support Innovation & Problem-Solving
Session #3: Building Respectful Relationships with Mindfulness
Session #4: Upending Digital Distraction
Article about Mindfulness based on interview with Andrew Safer
“In a COVID-19 World, Meditation Movement with Buddhist Roots More Important Than Ever” (click here), The Telegram/Saltwire Network, June 2, 2020.
Mindfulness for Depression
To register: cmhanl.info/mfd2020
Online Mindfulness Practice Sessions
Mindfulness practice introduces a touch of sanity into our otherwise uncertain, topsy-turvy lives, particularly in the era of COVID-19.
Please consider joining one of our free practice sessions on Zoom, in the comfort of your own home, when you can.
A note about Zoom: You can connect via laptop/desktop/notebook as long as they have microphone and camera, or through your smartphone.
The Zoom app downloads when you click the link, but if you would like to be 100% sure you have the app, download Zoom Client for Meetings ahead of time. If you’re asked whether to join with video, select “Yes”.
Join us for any of these ongoing sessions…
Monday Nights: 7:15 to 8:45 pm (Newfoundland time) Sitting, Walking, and Discussion
If you are new to Zoom, plan on connecting at 7:05 pm.
Wednesdays: 12:00 to 12:30 pm, and 7:00 to 8:00 pm: Sitting, Walking, Sitting
Fridays: 12:00 to 12:45 pm Sitting, Walking, and Sitting
If you are new to Mindfulness practice, there will be instructions at the beginning of the session.
To join, specify which session in an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Next “Anxiety, Stress & Mindfulness” Workshop Series…
Book Signing at Chapters
Anxiety Relief Project Facebook-Live Talk
Anxiety, Stress & Mindfulness: Workshops Starting Sept. 25th
(Click links below…)
Mindfulness Practice Sessions Throughout the Week
Since the start of Covid, we have four practice sessions per week that are open to the public, at no charge. Sitting and walking meditation alternate.
We meet on Zoom at the following times: MONDAY 7:15 TO 8:45 pm (includes readings and discussion)*; and FRIDAY Noon to 12:45 pm.
- The Monday night practice is also in-person at The Lantern, 35 Barnes Rd. (Cape Spear Room, 2nd Floor).
If you have not practiced mindfulness before, we will talk you through the instructions.
There is no fee. Contributions towards seats in mindfulness programs are gratefully accepted.
Safer Mindfulness workshops and training combine 53 years of experience in mindfulness practice with 28 years in mindfulness instruction, program development, and workshop facilitation.
Providing instruction and training in applying ancient wisdom and methods to address everyday challenges with clarity and resourcefulness