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There has been a groundswell of interest in the UK in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and its derivatives, particularly Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT). Many health, education and social work practitioners have sought ways to develop their competencies as mindfulness-based teachers, and increasing numbers of organisations are developing mindfulness-based training programmes. However, the rapid expansion of interest in mindfulness-based approaches has meant that those people offering training for MBSR and MBCT teachers have had to consider some quite fundamental questions about training processes, standards and competence. They also need to consider how to develop a robust professional context for the next generation of mindfulness-based teachers. The ways in which competencies are addressed in the secular mainstream contexts in which MBSR and MBCT are taught are examined to enable a consideration of the particularities of mindfulness-based teaching competence. A framework suggesting how competencies develop in trainees is presented. The current status of methodologies for assessing competencies used in mindfulness-based training and research programmes is reviewed. We argue that the time is ripe to continue to develop these dialogues across the international community of mindfulness-based trainers and teachers.
Background. The assessment of intervention integrity is essential in psychotherapeutic intervention outcome research and psychotherapist training. There has been little attention given to it in mindfulness-based interventions research, training programs, and practice. Aims. To address this, the Mindfulness-Based Interventions: Teaching Assessment Criteria (MBI:TAC) was developed. This article describes the MBI:TAC and its development and presents initial data on reliability and validity. Method. Sixteen assessors from three centers evaluated teaching integrity of 43 teachers using the MBI:TAC. Results. Internal consistency (α = .94) and interrater reliability (overall intraclass correlation coefficient = .81; range = .60-.81) were high. Face and content validity were established through the MBI:TAC development process. Data on construct validity were acceptable. Conclusions. Initial data indicate that the MBI:TAC is a reliable and valid tool. It can be used in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction/Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy outcome evaluation research, training and pragmatic practice settings, and in research to assess the impact of teaching integrity on participant outcome.
Few empirical studies have explored the associations between formal and informal mindfulness home practice and outcome in Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT). In this study ninety-nine participants randomised to MBCT in a multi-centre randomised controlled trial completed self-reported ratings of home practice over 7 treatment weeks. Recurrence of Major Depression was assessed immediately after treatment, and at 3, 6, 9, and 12-months post-treatment. Results identified a significant association between mean daily duration of formal home practice and outcome and additionally indicated that participants who reported that they engaged in formal home practice on at least 3 days a week during the treatment phase were almost half as likely to relapse as those who reported fewer days of formal practice. These associations were independent of the potentially confounding variable of participant-rated treatment plausibility. The current study identified no significant association between informal home practice and outcome, although this may relate to the inherent difficulties in quantifying informal home mindfulness practice. These findings have important implications for clinicians discussing mindfulness-based interventions with their participants, in particular in relation to MBCT, where the amount of participant engagement in home practice appears to have a significant positive impact on outcome.
The authors examined the effects of mindfulness training on 2 aspects of mode of processing in depressed participants: degree of meta-awareness and specificity of memory. Each of these has been suggested as a maladaptive aspect of a mode of processing linked to persistence and recurrence of symptoms. Twenty-seven depressed participants, all of whom had experienced suicidal crises, described warning signs for their last crisis. These descriptions were blind-rated independently for meta-awareness and specificity. Participants were then randomly allocated to receive mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) plus treatment as usual (TAU) or TAU alone, and retested after 3 months. Results showed that, although comparable at baseline, patients randomized to MBCT displayed significant posttreatment differences in meta-awareness and specificity compared with TAU patients. These results suggest that mindfulness training may enable patients to reflect on memories of previous crises in a detailed and decentered way, allowing them to relate to such experiences in a way that is likely to be helpful in preventing future relapses.
We report data from a randomised controlled trial of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy to pilot procedures for people with a history of suicidal ideation or behaviour, focusing in particular on the variables that distinguish those who complete an adequate ‘dose’ of treatment, from those who drop out. Sixty-eight participants were randomised to either immediate treatment with mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) (n = 33) or to the waitlist (n = 36) arm of the trial. In addition to collecting demographic and clinical information, we assessed participants’ cognitive reactivity using the means end problem-solving task, completed before and after a mood induction procedure. Ten participants dropped out of treatment, and eight dropped out of the waitlist condition. Those who dropped out of MBCT were significantly younger than those who completed treatment, less likely to be on antidepressants, had higher levels of depressive rumination and brooding and showed significantly greater levels of problem-solving deterioration following mood challenge. None of these factors distinguished participants in the waiting list condition who remained in the study from those who dropped out. Our results suggest that individuals with high levels of cognitive reactivity, brooding and depressive rumination may find it particularly difficult to engage with MBCT, although paradoxically they are likely to have the most to gain from the development of mindfulness skills if they remain in class. Addressing how such patients can be best prepared for treatment and supported to remain in treatment when difficulties arise is an important challenge.
This acclaimed work, now in a new edition, has introduced tens of thousands of clinicians to mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) for depression, an 8-week program with proven effectiveness. Step by step, the authors explain the "whys" and "how-tos" of conducting mindfulness practices and cognitive interventions that have been shown to bolster recovery from depression and prevent relapse. Clinicians are also guided to practice mindfulness themselves, an essential prerequisite to teaching others. Forty-five reproducible handouts are included. Purchasers get access to a companion website featuring downloadable audio recordings of the guided mindfulness practices (meditations and mindful movement), plus all of the reproducibles, ready to download and print in a convenient 8 1/2" x 11" size. A separate website for use by clients features the audio recordings only.
This book presents an innovative eight-session program designed to prevent relapse in clients who have recovered from depression.
Objective: We compared mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) with both cognitive psychological education (CPE) and treatment as usual (TAU) in preventing relapse to major depressive disorder (MDD) in people currently in remission following at least 3 previous episodes. Method: A randomized controlled trial in which 274 participants were allocated in the ratio 2:2:1 to MBCT plus TAU, CPE plus TAU, and TAU alone, and data were analyzed for the 255 (93%; MBCT = 99, CPE = 103, TAU = 53) retained to follow-up. MBCT was delivered in accordance with its published manual, modified to address suicidal cognitions; CPE was modeled on MBCT, but without training in meditation. Both treatments were delivered through 8 weekly classes. Results: Allocated treatment had no significant effect on risk of relapse to MDD over 12 months follow-up, hazard ratio for MBCT vs. CPE = 0.88, 95% CI [0.58, 1.35]; for MBCT vs. TAU = 0.69, 95% CI [0.42, 1.12]. However, severity of childhood trauma affected relapse, hazard ratio for increase of 1 standard deviation = 1.26 (95% CI [1.05, 1.50]), and significantly interacted with allocated treatment. Among participants above median severity, the hazard ratio was 0.61, 95% CI [0.34, 1.09], for MBCT vs. CPE, and 0.43, 95% CI [0.22, 0.87], for MBCT vs. TAU. For those below median severity, there were no such differences between treatment groups. Conclusion: MBCT provided significant protection against relapse for participants with increased vulnerability due to history of childhood trauma, but showed no significant advantage in comparison to an active control treatment and usual care over the whole group of patients with recurrent depression.
Recent research has shown that mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) could be a useful alternative approach to the treatment of health anxiety and deserves further investigation. In this paper, we outline the rationale for using MBCT in the treatment of this condition, namely its hypothesised impact on the underlying mechanisms which maintain health anxiety, such as rumination and avoidance, hypervigilance to body sensations and misinterpretation of such sensations. We also describe some of the adaptations which were made to the MBCT protocol for recurrent depression in this trial and discuss the rationale for these adaptations. We use a case example from the trial to illustrate how MBCT was implemented and outline the experience of one of the participants who took part in an 8-week MBCT course. Finally, we detail some of the more general experiences of participants and discuss the advantages and possible limitations of this approach for this population, as well as considering what might be useful avenues to explore in future research.
Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) was developed as a psychological approach for people at risk for depressive relapse who wish to learn how to stay well in the long-term. In this article we set out the rationale for MBCT, outline the treatment approach, overview the efficacy research to date and look to future challenges.
Mindfulness-based approaches to medicine, psychology, neuroscience, healthcare, education, business leadership, and other major societal institutions have become increasingly common. New paradigms are emerging from a confluence of two powerful and potentially synergistic epistemologies: one arising from the wisdom traditions of Asia and the other arising from post-enlightenment empirical science. This book presents the work of internationally renowned experts in the fields of Buddhist scholarship and scientific research, as well as looking at the implementation of mindfulness in healthcare and education settings. Contributors consider the use of mindfulness throughout history and look at the actual meaning of mindfulness whilst identifying the most salient areas for potential synergy and for potential disjunction. Mindfulness: Diverse Perspectives on its Meanings, Origins and Applications provides a place where wisdom teachings, philosophy, history, science and personal meditation practice meet. It was originally published as a special issue of Contemporary Buddhism.
Mindfulness-based approaches to medicine, psychology, neuroscience, healthcare, education, business leadership, and other major societal institutions have become increasingly common. New paradigms are emerging from a confluence of two powerful and potentially synergistic epistemologies: one arising from the wisdom traditions of Asia and the other arising from post-enlightenment empirical science. This book presents the work of internationally renowned experts in the fields of Buddhist scholarship and scientific research, as well as looking at the implementation of mindfulness in healthcare and education settings. Contributors consider the use of mindfulness throughout history and look at the actual meaning of mindfulness whilst identifying the most salient areas for potential synergy and for potential disjunction.Mindfulness: Diverse Perspectives on its Meanings, Origins and Applications provides a place where wisdom teachings, philosophy, history, science and personal meditation practice meet. It was originally published as a special issue of Contemporary Buddhism.
Mindfulness reveals a set of simple yet powerful practices that can be incorporated into daily life to help break the cycle of unhappiness, stress, anxiety and mental exhaustion and promote genuine joie de vivre. It’s the kind of happiness that gets into your bones. It seeps into everything you do and helps you meet the worst that life can throw at you with new courage.The book is based on Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) which revolves around a straightforward form of mindfulness meditation which takes just a few minutes a day for the full benefits to be revealed. MBCT has been clinically proven to be at least as effective as drugs for depression and it is recommended by the UK’s National Institute of Clinical Excellence – in other words, it works. Mindfulness focuses on promoting joy and peace rather than banishing unhappiness. It’s precisely focused to help ordinary people boost their happiness and confidence levels whilst also reducing anxiety, stress and irritability. This book comes complete with a CD of guided meditations but can be enjoyed without the accompanying audio.
If you've ever struggled with depression, take heart. Mindfulness, a simple yet powerful way of paying attention to your most difficult emotions and life experiences, can help you break the cycle of chronic unhappiness once and for all. In The Mindful Way through Depression, four uniquely qualified experts explain why our usual attempts to "think" our way out of a bad mood or just "snap out of it" lead us deeper into the downward spiral. Through insightful lessons drawn from both Eastern meditative traditions and cognitive therapy, they demonstrate how to sidestep the mental habits that lead to despair, including rumination and self-blame, so you can face life's challenges with greater resilience. Jon Kabat-Zinn gently and encouragingly narrates the accompanying CD of guided meditations, making this a complete package for anyone seeking to regain a sense of hope and well-being.
This study evaluated mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT), a group intervention designed to train recovered recurrently depressed patients to disengage from dysphoria-activated depressogenic thinking that may mediate relapse/recurrence. Recovered recurrently depressed patients ( n = 145) were randomized to continue with treatment as usual or, in addition, to receive MBCT. Relapse/recurrence to major depression was assessed over a 60-week study period. For patients with 3 or more previous episodes of depression (77% of the sample), MBCT significantly reduced risk of relapse/recurrence. For patients with only 2 previous episodes, MBCT did not reduce relapse/recurrence. MBCT offers a promising cost-efficient psychological approach to preventing relapse/recurrence in recovered recurrently depressed patients.
Objective: The efficacy and acceptability of existing psychological interventions for health anxiety (hypochondriasis) are limited. In the current study, the authors aimed to assess the impact of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) on health anxiety by comparing the impact of MBCT in addition to usual services (unrestricted services) with unrestricted services (US) alone. Method: The 74 participants were randomized to either MBCT in addition to US (n = 36) or US alone (n = 38). Participants were assessed prior to intervention (MBCT or US), immediately following the intervention, and 1 year postintervention. In addition to independent assessments of diagnostic status, standardized self-report measures and assessor ratings of severity and distress associated with the diagnosis of hypochondriasis were used. Results: In the intention-to-treat (ITT) analysis (N = 74), MBCT participants had significantly lower health anxiety than US participants, both immediately following the intervention (Cohen's d = 0.48) and at 1-year follow-up (d = 0.48). The per-protocol (PP) analysis (n = 68) between groups effect size was d = 0.49 at postintervention and d = 0.62 at 1-year follow-up. Mediational analysis showed that change in mindfulness mediated the group changes in health anxiety symptoms. Significantly fewer participants allocated to MBCT than to US met criteria for the diagnosis of hypochondriasis, both immediately following the intervention period (ITT 50.0% vs. 78.9%; PP 47.1% vs. 78.4%) and at 1-year follow-up (ITT 36.1% vs. 76.3%; PP 28.1% vs. 75.0%). Conclusions: MBCT may be a useful addition to usual services for patients with health anxiety.
Recurrent distressing intrusive images are a common experience in hypochondriasis. The aim of the current study was to assess the impact of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) for hypochondriasis on the occurrence and nature of distressing intrusive imagery in hypochondriasis. A semistructured interview was used to assess intrusive imagery, and an adapted version of the Southampton Mindfulness Questionnaire (SMQ) was used to assess participants’ relationship with their intrusive images. A consecutive series of participants (N = 20) who were receiving MBCT for hypochondriasis as part of an ongoing research program were assessed prior to participating in an 8-week MBCT intervention, immediately following the intervention, and at 3-month follow-up. As compared to the baseline assessment, the frequency of intrusive images, the distress associated with them, and the intrusiveness of the images were all significantly reduced at the post-MBCT assessment. Participants’ adapted SMQ scores were significantly increased following the MBCT intervention, suggesting that participants’ relationship with their intrusive images had changed in that they had developed a more “mindful” and compassionate response to the images when they did occur. Effect sizes from pre- to post-intervention were medium to large (Cohen’s d = 0.75–1.50). All treatment gains were maintained at 3-month follow-up. Results suggest that MBCT may be an effective intervention for addressing intrusive imagery in hypochondriasis.
Our objective was to conduct the first randomized controlled trial of the efficacy of a group mindfulness program aimed at reducing and preventing depression in an adolescent school-based population. For each of 12 pairs of parallel classes with students (age range 13–20) from five schools (N = 408), one class was randomly assigned to the mindfulness condition and one class to the control condition. Students in the mindfulness group completed depression assessments (the Depression Anxiety Stress Scales) prior to and immediately following the intervention and 6 months after the intervention. Control students completed the questionnaire at the same times as those in the mindfulness group. Hierarchical linear modeling showed that the mindfulness intervention showed significantly greater reductions (and greater clinically significant change) in depression compared with the control group at the 6-month follow-up. Cohen's d was medium sized (>.30) for both the pre-to-post and pre-to-follow-up effect for depressive symptoms in the mindfulness condition. The findings suggest that school-based mindfulness programs can help to reduce and prevent depression in adolescents.
Several randomised controlled trials suggest that mindfulness-based approaches are helpful in preventing depressive relapse and recurrence, and the UK Government’s National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence has recommended these interventions for use in the National Health Service. There are good grounds to suggest that mindfulness-based approaches are also helpful with anxiety disorders and a range of chronic physical health problems, and there is much clinical and research interest in applying mindfulness approaches to other populations and problems such as people with personality disorders, substance abuse, and eating disorders. We review the UK context for developments in mindfulness-based approaches and set out criteria for mindfulness teacher competence and training steps, as well as some of the challenges and future directions that can be anticipated in ensuring that evidence-based mindfulness approaches are available in health care and other settings.