How mindfulness can help

The theme of this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week is mindfulness, and my local authority has piloted training in meditation techniques for its social workers

Not sure about mindfulness? Neither was Abigail Bryning.

While I was growing up my mum practised meditation and recently suggested I try mindfulness as a way to deal with stress in my job as a social worker, but I was a bit sceptical. She often listened to pan pipe music and I couldn’t imagine how that sort of thing could help with serious issues and be useful in my work.

But when my manager at East Sussex county council said that mindfulness training was going to be piloted at work, I read about some of its benefits and decided to join the training course. Run by the social enterprise Grow Mindfulness, the course was held for one morning a week over 12 weeks. At first I was a bit anxious about how much extra work it would add to my working week. I’m also a bit of a problem solver and am probably better at dealing with other people’s problems rather than my own.

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