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Introduction to MBSR

Mindfulness & Neurobiological 

Tools for Healing - A Training Resource

By Jim Messina, Ph.D., CCMHC, NCC, DCMHS-T

Table of Contents:

Preamble: Announcement of the Introduction To MBSR Training Program

1. Introduction to Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) In Jon Kabat-Zinn’s Own Words

2. Layperson's Introduction to Mindfulness

3. Research on Impact of MBSR

4. Bibliography of MBSR Books

5. Meditations available to use in Mindfulness Training

6. Chair Yoga that can be used in Mindfulness Training

7. Metaphors that can be used in Mindfulness Training

8. Handouts for Mindfulness Training

9. 17 Mindfulness Exercises

Introduction to Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR)

Zoom Interactive Online Training Program

(CE Broker #20-699427) 3 CEU’s


Trainers’ Introduction to Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR)

3 CEU's in a 3 hour session based on request (CE Broker Tracking #: 20-748178) 

This Program is approved by Florida Board of Clinical Social Work, Marriage and Family Therapy and Mental Health Counseling for: LMHC's,LMFT's, LCSW's & CMSW's and Florida Board of Nursing for: RN's, ARNP's, LPN's & Clinical Nurse Specialists

Resource for Course on

1. Trainers’  Introduction To MBSR at:

2. Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) – Train the Trainer Program at:

2. Pain Management - A Neurobiological Approach at:

Program Description:

This program is geared to train mental health about Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction also known as MBSR. It is important before a mental health professionals decides to take the 8-week Train the Trainer Program offered by COPING.US Training Program that the have a thorough understanding of the Mindfulness approach to mental and physical health and are willing to practice Mindfulness in their own lives before encouraging and training their clients to utilize Mindfulness or MBSR in their own lives.  The program will introduce the participants to the thinking behind MBSR and mindfulness and have it explained to them in a way in which they can then explain it to the laypeople who are their clients. This will enable both the clinicians and clients to fully understand what is involved in the process of mindfulness practice and how important it is to be committed to maintain the practice both formally and informally on a daily basis.

Learning Objectives: 

After participating in the program, the participants will:

1. Learn about the underlying methodology, philosophy and intentionality of the both Mindfulness and the MBSR program by reviewing all the relevant literature and research made available in this training program

2. Learn about each of the key components of MBSR and Mindfulness which include the meditation exercises and the emotional and physical impact this practice will have on their clients emotional and physical health.  

3. Learn about the variety of meditations both formal and informal which are involved in MBSR and Mindfulness practice and have a better understanding of what it takes to cue their clients into the benefits and impact of their daily participation in this process.

4. Learn about the various supplemental tools which can be utilized to assist in the training of their clients in MBSR and Mindfulness daily programming to address their stress and/or pain management by overcoming their resistance to engaging in this program.

To register for this program you are strongly encouraged to purchase the three books used in this course since once you own the books you can download the meditations that go with them:

- Kabat-Zinn, J. (2012 & 2016). Mindfulness for beginners: Reclaiming he present moment and your life. Sounds True, Inc: Boulder, Colorado

- Stahl, B. & Goldstein, E. (2019). A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook (Second Edition). New Harbinger Publications: Oakland, CA

- Wolf, C. & Serpa, J.G. (2015). A Clinician’s Guide to Teaching Mindfulness. New Harbinger Publications: Oakland, CA

There is no fee for this course and if you want to register send email to register to:

Jim Messina, Director of COPING.US Training Programs at:

Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) CEU Programs

Introduction to Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR)

Zoom Interactive Online Training Program

(CE Broker #20-699427) 3 CEU’s 


Trainer's Introduction to MBSR

3 CEU’s Pre-Requisite for 8-week MBSR Train the Trainer Program (CE Broker Tracking #20-748178) (open enrollment)


Advanced MBSR Training

Zoom Interactive Online Training Program

(CE Broker #20-699435) 16 CEU’s


MBSR Train the Trainer Certificate Program

8 CEU's in an 8-weekly session Program (CE Broker Tracking #20-680150) ( Limited to 10 Trainees who must be graduates of the Trainer Introduction to MBSR Program)


Watch this site for update on future programs


Information to help your decision to participate in these programs

Review the materials, PowerPoints, handouts etc. for each course on their respective website:


 Advanced MBSR Trainer Program at: 

Zoom MBSR Training Program

Introduction to MBSR (CE Broker #20-699427) 3 CEU’s

Advanced MBSR Training (CE Broker #20-699435) 16 CEU’s

Audience: Current Troy and NLU students, alumni and faculty. We can handle up to 40 trainees with up to 5 facilitators making each team up to 8 trainees apiece.

Rooms: Break the group into Zoom rooms for Teams with no more than 8 participants led by a MBSR trained leader

During the Initial Intro workshop all participants will be asked to bring some raisins to the session and then during the session will listen and follow JKZ’s 16 minute Raisin Exercise and then during the week their formal practice will be to daily use raisins or other foods to practice sensory mindfulness and awareness.

During the 8 weeks MBSR Train the Trainer: Trainees would do progress sheets weekly and email them to COPING.US Training Programs prior to the next meeting, in order to receive their CEU’s at the end of the program.

Team Rooms Weekly Agendas: The rooms would handle the Team Discussions

1. At start of Weekly Session, meet to discuss and share their feelings and reaction to their previous week’s experience and go over any highlights they want to share from their Weekly Formal and Informal Practice Progress Sheets

2. After 15-minute Chair Yoga to share their response to chair yoga exercise

3. After the metaphor video, fill out sheet and share their response to metaphor

4. After the weekly meditation to share their experience and response to the meditation and what they anticipate their coming week to be like.

Model of Program: Present the program with no lecturing except for the first night of Intro to MBSR for 3 CEU. The remaining Advanced MBSR8 weeks for  16 CEU's For a total of 19 CEU's for the total 9 sessions.

Schedule: Wednesday starting at 5:30 ending at 7:30 pm except for Intro night which ends at 8:30 since it is for 3 CEU’s:




Intro to MBSR

Sept 2

5:30 – 8:30 pm

Session 1 MBSR

Sept 9

5:30 – 7:30 pm

Session 2 MBSR

Sept 16

5:30 – 7:30 pm

Session 3 MBSR

Sept 23

5:30 – 7:30 pm

Session 4 MBSR

Sept 30

5:30 – 7:30 pm

Session 5 MBSR

Oct 7

5:30 – 7:30 pm

Session 6 MBSR

Oct 14

5:30 – 7:30 pm

Session 7 MBSR

Oct 21

5:30 – 7:30 pm

Session 8 MBSR

Oct 28

5:30 – 7:30 pm


Acceptance and Commitment Act Training Program (3 CEU) Weds Nov 4 5:30-830 pm 

Prelude to Introduction to MBSR:

Watch Jon Kabat-Zinn's Video on Sounds True:  Why Mindfulness Matters—and Why It Might Matter to You!  He provides you a reason why embracing Mindfulness at this point in your life is so valuable and important.

1. Introduction to Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR)

In Jon Kabat-Zinn’s Own Words


What is Mindfulness

Mindfulness is:

awareness, cultivated by paying attention in a sustained and particular way:

-on purpose,
-in the present moment, and

(Source: Jon Kabat-Zinn (2016). Mindfulness for Beginners: Reclaiming the Present moment-and your life. Sounds True, Inc: Boulder, Colorado, p. 1)

What is Meditation

Meditation is any way in which you engage in:

-Systematically regulating your attention and energy
-Thereby influencing and possibly transforming the quality of your experience
-In the service of realizing the full range of your humanity
-Your relationship to others and the world.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p.1)


Two Forms of Meditation in MBSR

There are two complementary ways to do this:

-Formally: Formally means engaging in making some time every day to practice with the guided meditations

-Informally: Informally means letting the practice spill over into every aspect of your waking life in an uncontrived and natural way

These two modes of embodied practice go hand in hand and support each other, and ultimately become one seamless whole, which we could call living with awareness or wakefulness

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p2)


Practice of Mindfulness

-The very intention to practice with consistency and gentleness — whether you feel like it or not on any given day — is a powerful and healing discipline.
-Without such motivation, especially at the beginning, it is difficult for mindfulness to take root and go beyond being a mere concept or script, no matter how attractive it might be to you philosophically.
-While mindfulness and the current high levels of public and scientific interest in it may indeed appear to some to be much ado about nothing
-it is much more accurate to describe it as much ado about what might seem like almost nothing that turns out to be just about everything
-As you practice Mindfulness you are going to experience firsthand that “almost nothing.” It contains a whole universe of life-enhancing possibilities.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p3)

Opportunities provided by practicing MBSR

Mindfulness as a practice provides endless opportunities:

-To cultivate greater intimacy with your own mind and
-To tap into and develop your deep interior resources for learning, growing, healing, and
-Potentially for transforming your understanding of who you are and how you might live more wisely and with greater well-being, meaning, and happiness in this world.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p4)


Importance of Breath in MBSR

-The fact is that you are a being that breathes
-You drink in the air on each in-breath, giving it back to the world on each out-breath. Your life depends on it.
-Your breathing can serve as a convenient first object of attention to bring you back into the present moment, because you are only breathing now — the last breath is gone, the next one hasn’t come yet — it is always a matter of this one.
-So, it is an ideal anchor for your wayward attention. It keeps you in the present moment.
-This is one of many reasons why paying attention to the sensations of breathing in the body -But attending to the feeling of the breath in the body is not only a beginner’s practice. It may be simple, but the Buddha himself taught that the breath has within it everything you would ever need for cultivating the full range of your humanity, especially your capacity for wisdom and for compassion

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p11)


What is Awareness

-Awareness is a capacity that you are intimately familiar with and yet are simultaneously a complete stranger to.
-The training in mindfulness is really the cultivation of a resource that is already yours.
-It doesn’t require going anywhere
-It doesn’t require getting anything
-But it does require learning how to inhabit another domain of mind that you are, as a rule, fairly out of touch with.
-And that is what you might call the “being mode” of mind.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p17)


“Doing Mode” vs “Being Mode”

Most of your life you are absorbed in doing

-In getting things done
-In going rapidly from one thing to the next
-Or in multitasking — attempting to juggle a bunch of different things at the very same time
-Often your life becomes so driven that you are moving through your moments to get to better ones at some later point
-You live to check things off your to-do list, then fall into bed exhausted at the end of the day, only to jump up the next morning to get on the treadmill once again.
This way of living is compounded by all the ways in which your life is now driven by the ever-quickening expectations you place on yourself and that others place on you and you on them, generated in large measure by your increasing dependence on ubiquitous digital technology and its ever-accelerating effects on your pace of life.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p18)

“Human Doing” vs “Human Being”

-If you are not careful, it is all too easy to fall into becoming more of a “human doing” than a “human being”, and forget who is doing all the doing, and why.
This is where mindfulness comes in.
-Mindfulness reminds us that it is possible to shift from a doing mode to a being mode through the application of attention and awareness.
-Then your doing can come out of your being and be much more integrated and effective.
-What is more, you cease exhausting yourself so much as you learn to inhabit your own body and the only moment in which you are ever alive — this one.
(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p18)


Mindfulness is Universal

-Mindfulness is often described as the heart of Buddhist meditation. Nevertheless, cultivating mindfulness is not a Buddhist activity.
-In essence, mindfulness is universal because it is all about attention and awareness, and attention and awareness are human capacities that are innate in all of humans
-Historically speaking, the most refined and developed articulations of mindfulness and how to cultivate it stem from the Buddhist tradition, and Buddhist texts and teachings constitute an invaluable resource for deepening your understanding and appreciation of mindfulness and the subtleties of its cultivation.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p21)


Mindfulness is a state of being awakened

Awakened to what?

-To the nature of reality
-to the potential for freeing oneself from suffering
-by engaging in a systematic and very practical approach to living

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p24)


Is your Mind ready to be fully awake?

-If you are going to use the mind to observe and befriend and ultimately understand itself, first you will have to learn at least the rudiments of how to stabilize it enough so that it can actually do the work of paying attention in a sustained and reliable way
-Becoming aware of what’s going on beneath the surface of its own activities. Even your best efforts can easily be thwarted by all the ways in which you distract yourself.
-Your attention is not very stable and is invariably carried off someplace else a good deal of the time, as you will experience for yourself with the guided meditations.
-With ongoing practice, you at least become far more familiar with the mind’s comings and goings; over time, in important ways,
-The mind learns how to stabilize itself, at least to a degree. Even a tiny bit of stability, coupled with awareness, is hugely important and transforming,
-So, it is very important not to build some kind of ideal about your mind not wavering or being absolutely stable in order for you to be “doing it right.”
-That may happen in rare moments under particular circumstances, but for the most part, as you will see, it is in the nature of the mind to wave.
-Knowing that makes a huge difference in how you will approach the meditation practice.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p24)


Inhabiting awareness is the essence of practice

-The challenge of mindfulness is to be present for your experience as it is, rather than immediately jumping in to change it or try to force it to be different.
-Inhabiting awareness is the essence of mindfulness practice,
-No matter what you are experiencing, whether it arises in formal meditation or in going about your life.
-Life itself becomes the meditation practice as you learn to take up residency in awareness — this essential dimension of your being that is already yours but with which you are so unfamiliar that you frequently cannot put it to use at the very times in your life when you need it the most.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p26)


Mindfulness is a practice of discipline

-To cultivate mindfulness really does involve and call out of you a certain constancy of motivation and purpose in the face of all sorts of energies in your life, some from inside yourself and some from outside, that dissipate your awareness by perpetually distracting you and diverting you from your intentions and purpose.
-The discipline is really the willingness to bring the spaciousness and clarity of awareness back over and over again to whatever is going on — even as you feel you are being pulled in a thousand different directions.
-Just taking this kind of stance toward your own experience, without trying to fix or change anything at all, is an act of generosity toward yourself, an act of intelligence, an act of kindness.
the word discipline comes from disciple, someone who is in a position to learn. So when you bring a certain discipline to the cultivation of mindfulness, you are aware of how challenging it is to bring a sustained attending to any aspect of your livfe
-You are actually creating the conditions for learning something fundamental from life itself. Then life becomes the meditation practice and the meditation teacher, and whatever happens in any moment is simply the curriculum of that moment.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p27)

Real challenge is how will you be in relationship to whatever is arising?

The real challenge is how will you be in relationship to whatever is arising?

-Here is where freedom itself is to be found.
-Here is where a moment of genuine happiness might be experienced, a moment of equanimity, a moment of peace.
-Each moment is an opportunity to see that you do not have to succumb to old habits that function below the level of your awareness.

With great intentionality and resolve:

-You can experiment with non-distraction.
-You can experiment with non-diversion.
-You can experiment with non-fixing.
-You can experiment with non-doing.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p28)


Thinking is your “Default Setting”

-Thinking seems to constitute your “default setting” rather than awareness.
-It is a good thing to notice, because in this way, you might slowly shift from this automatic reverting to thinking over and over again to another mode of mind that may stand you in far better stead, namely awareness itself.
-Perhaps over time you can adjust your default setting to one of greater mindfulness rather than of mindlessness and being lost in thought.
-As soon as you take your seat or lie down to meditate, the first thing you will notice is that the mind has a life of its own.
-It just goes on and on and on: thinking, musing, fantasizing, planning, anticipating, worrying, liking, disliking, remembering, forgetting, evaluating, reacting, telling itself stories — a seemingly endless stream of activity that you may not have ever noticed in quite this way until you put out the welcome mat for a few moments of non-doing, of just being.
-This is what the thought-stream does, and that is precisely why you need to become intimate with your mind through careful observation. Otherwise, thinking completely dominates your life and colors everything you feel and do and care about.
-And you are not special in this regard. Everybody has a similar thought-stream running 24/7, often without realizing it at all.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p30)


Befriending your thinking

It is very important as a beginner that you understand right from the start that meditation is about

-Befriending your thinking – is about holding it gently in awareness, no matter what is on your mind in a particular moment.
-It is not about shutting off your thoughts or changing them in any way.
-Meditation is not suggesting that it would be better if you didn’t think and were simply to suppress all those sometimes unruly, disturbing, and disquieting, sometimes uplifting and creative thoughts when they arise.
-If you do try to suppress your thinking, you are just going to wind up with a gigantic headache. Such a pursuit is unwise, pure folly — like trying to stop the ocean from waving.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p35)


Not taking your thoughts personally

It is very important as a beginner that you understand right from the start that meditation is about:

-Befriending your thinking
-Holding it gently in awareness, no matter what is on your mind in a particular moment.
-It is not about shutting off your thoughts or changing them in any way.
-Meditation is not suggesting that it would be better if you didn’t think and were simply to suppress all those sometimes unruly, disturbing, and disquieting, sometimes uplifting and creative thoughts when they arise.
-If you do try to suppress your thinking, you are just going to wind up with a gigantic headache. Such a pursuit is unwise, pure folly — like trying to stop the ocean from waving.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p35)


Avoid Selfing

-If you fall into the thought-stream and get caught up with various thoughts, especially if you self-identify with them — saying to yourself: that is “me” or that is “not me” — then we are really caught.

-For this is where the ultimate attachment arises, with the identifying of circumstances or conditions or things with the personal pronouns, namely “I,” “me,” and “mine.”

-Sometimes this habit is called self-identification selfing, the tendency to put yourself at the absolute center of the universe.

-It can be very helpful to pay attention to how much of the time you are engaged in selfing, and without trying to fix it or change it, simply hold that strong habit of mind in awareness.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p40)

Mindfulness brought to all senses

-The term clearly seeing seems to privilege one particular sense. But “seeing,” in the way it is used in MBSR represents all of your senses, because it is only through your senses that you can be aware of and therefore know anything at all.
-Clear seeing also means clear hearing, clear smelling, clear tasting, clear touching, and clear knowing, which would include knowing what’s on your mind, and therefore knowing both what you are thinking and what emotions are visiting
-Therefore feeling what you are feeling, grounded in the body, whether it be fear or anger or sadness, frustration, irritation, impatience, annoyance, satisfaction, empathy, compassion, happiness, or anything else.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p54)

You belong

-You are never alone.
-And you already belong.
-You belong to humanity.
-You belong to life.
-You belong to this moment, to this breath.

When you undertake this practice with a group of other human beings very much like yourself it becomes even more powerful because you can be inspired and motivated by other people’s

-Strength and tenacity and insights,
-Often manifested in the face of unimaginable life circumstances and difficulties.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p62)


Mindfulness is not just a good idea

-But mindfulness is a way of being,
-One that requires consistent cultivation.
-It is a discipline all its own that naturally extends into all aspects of life as it is unfolding.
-It is certainly a good idea to be mindful, but mindfulness is not merely a good idea.
-And while it is simple, it is not easy.
-It is not so easy to maintain mindfulness, even over very short periods of time. you saw earlier that in some ways, you could think of it as the hardest work in the world, and the most important.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p64)


Make Mindfulness work for you

Until and unless you implement it and sustain it through ongoing, regular practice, leavened with an appropriate attitude of gentleness and kindness toward yourself, mindfulness can easily remain:

-Simply one more thought to fill your head and make you feel inadequate …
-One more concept
-One more slogan
-One more chore
-One more thing to schedule into your already too-busy day

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p64)


Benefits of MBSR

-Many clients said to JKZ and staff with great regularity, that they feel that mindfulness training in the form of MBSR gave them back their lives and they are grateful to us for it.
-We often point out that while that may be true to a degree,it is also true — perhaps even more true — that we didn’t give them anything. Whatever benefits they received came from their own hard work with the meditation practice, from the inspiration and support of the other people in their class, from their own willingness to engage in and sustain mindfulness practice as a discipline over time, and from the fact of their already being whole in the first place.
-The flowering of mindfulness in one’s life is always more of a development and an integration of what is already here rather than an adding or subtracting of specific qualities.
JKZ’s clients in the Stress Reduction Clinic, mindfulness is not a nice little idea that you pull out every time you feel stressed. Nor is it a relaxation technique. It’s not a technique at all. It is a way of being.

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p112)

The Attitudinal Foundations of Mindfulness Practice

1. Non-Judging

2. Patience

3. Beginner’s Mind

4. Trust

5. Non-Striving

6. Acceptance

7. Letting Go

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p123-134)


1. Non-Judging

-When you begin to practice the guided meditations, notice how frequently judgments of various kinds arise.
-You only need to recognize them.
-No need to act on them


2. Patience

-Patience is really a wonderful attitude to bring to mindfulness practice because the practice of mindfulness is already, in some fundamental sense, about stepping out of time altogether.
-When you are talking about the present moment, you are talking about now; You are talking about “outside of clock time.”
-You have had moments like that. In fact, you have nothing but moments like that, but you ignore almost all of them, and it’s just once in a blue moon that you will experience a moment when time stops for you


3. Beginner’s Mind

-Beginner’s mind is an attitude.
-It doesn’t mean you don’t know anything.
-It means that you are spacious enough in that moment to not be caught by what it is that you do know or have experienced in the face of the enormity of what is unknown.


4. Trust

If you can’t entirely trust what you think,

-What about trusting awareness?
-What about trusting your heart?
-What about trusting your motivation to at least do no harm?
-What about trusting your experience until it’s proven to be inaccurate — and then trusting that discovery
-What about trusting your senses?
-What about Trusting your body?


5. Non-Striving

Non-striving is not trivial.

-It involves realizing that you are already here. There’s no place to go, because the agenda is simply to be awake.
-It is not framed as some ideal that suggests that after forty years of sitting in a cave in the Himalayas, or by studying with august teachers, or doing ten thousand prostrations, or whatever it is, you will necessarily be any better than you are now. It is likely that you will just be older.
-What happens now is what matters.


6. Acceptance

Acceptance is an expression of lived wisdom

-Not that it is easy to accept what is unfolding, especially if it is highly unpleasant
-But you can shift to “awarenessing” with acceptance which immediately frees you from the narrative in your head that says” “I’ve got to have conditions be just so in order for the moment to be a happy moment.”  But clinging is the opposite of acceptance.
-Acceptance is letting go of the need for things to be in order for you to be happy or in order for you to even show up with awareness in the present moment
-When you can hold whatever is unfolding, pleasant, unpleasant, or neutral in awareness and allow things to be exactly as they already are-then all of a sudden it becomes possible to stand fully in the moment without it having to be any different


7. Letting Go

Letting go means letting be. Letting go is akin to non-attachment to outcome

When you are no longer grasping for:

-What you want
-What you are already clinging to
-Or what you simply have to have

Letting go means not clinging to

-what you most hate
-Or what you have a huge aversion for

Letting go is a healthy condition of mind and heart-it embraces the whole of reality

In a new way. Which needs to be developed through practice

Getting Started with MBSR Practice


1. Posture

-Adopt a posture that embodies wakefulness which means to not practice lying down unless you set your mind to Falling Awake-
-If you chose a chair sit in such a way that the back is straight but relaxed with the shoulders and arms hanging off the rib cage, the head erect, and the chin slightly tucked
-Try to sit with your feet uncrossed on the floor and if possible, with your back away from the back of the chair so your posture is self-supporting, with the spine self-elevating out of the pelvis.
(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p141)


2. What to do with your eyes

-You can be aware with your closed or open
-If you sit with your eyes open, you can either let your gaze fall unfocused on the floor three or four feet out from you or on a wall if you are sitting facing the wall
-*Or you could use a mandella, which is a picture which you can focus on and allow your being be open to the messages on the Meditation tape (*Note: our suggestion not JKZ's)
-These suggestions allow you to stay in the moment without fear of falling asleep

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p142)


3. Sleepiness

-If you are sleepy it is best to sit with your eyes open
-Find a time of the day to practice when you are fairly awake: e.g. early in the morning after a good night’s sleep
-Splash cold water on your face before practicing if you feel sleepy – or even take an invigorating cold shower
-Don't Forget: there will be plenty of distractions to work with inwardly and outwardly, no matter how much you regulate the external environment


4. Protecting the time

-It is best to choose a time for formal practice in which you will not be interrupted
-Shut off your cell phone, pager, computer and the internet
-Close the door fo your room and make sure that others know not to interrupt you during this time – good reason for doing the exercise in the morning

Make this time:

-Time strictly for being
-Time for nurturing yourself through “nondoing”
-Time for cultivation of mindfulness and heartfulness

(Kabat-Zinn, 2016. p142)


2. Layperson’s Introduction to Mindfulness


What is Mindfulness

Mindfulness involves:

-An elemental and spontaneous openness to experience grounded in the body,

-Timeless, in not expecting something to happen

-Befriending and inhabiting of the present moment for its own sake

Resting in mindful awareness, you are:

-Participating intimately in life as it is unfolding

-Seeing what happens


-Allowing the original beauty and mastery of the world and you to speak to you without shying away from wonder, awe and joy

-The miracle of being alive in these precious present moments that are available to all of us but that we so often ignore in hope of some “better” ones at some future date


Reflect on these Messages

1. Intention shapes your thoughts and words

2. Thoughts and words mold your actions

3. Thoughts, words, and actions shape your behaviors’

4. Behaviors sculpt your bodily expressions

5. Bodily expressions fashion your character

6. Your character hardens into what you look like


The Goal of Mindfulness

1. Reduction of painful symptoms

2. Stress reduction

3. Improved quality of life

4. Improved coping skills

5. Greater sense of inner connectedness

6. Greater sense of unconditional self-acceptance


How does Mindfulness help you achieve these goals?

Through mindfulness:

-You experience a improved sense of self-control and ease over how you relate to or cope with what is happening in your inner or outer experience

-You learn to relate to what is happening with more kindness

-You lower your physiological stress response in the process.

Metaphor for this process:

“Learning to sail in the winds of life:

You can’t change the wind - but you can adjust your sails”.

Two Ways of Practicing Mindfulness

Formal Practice:  Setting time aside daily to do specific meditations using the recorded meditations available in JKZ Series 1, 2 and 3 or other recorded meditations available on Apps or on the Internet. Recommended body posture for the formal practice is sitting.

Informal Practice: When applying mindfulness or self-compassion to something that you are already doing in your everyday life.  This involves focusing on the sensations that arise in these situations. Example: Mindful eating: focusing your sight, smell, taste, touch, and sounds that anchor you in the moment of eating.  Turns out that you might also focus in on your emotions and thoughts that arise in the moment


Instructions for Mindfulness Practice

1. Become aware of the present-moment experience: Focus your attention on the “Nowness of the activity” and shutter out all other thoughts if you can

2. Once you notice that your attention has wondered off, gently redirect your attention to the current present moment

3. Do not judge yourself harshly if your attention has been distracted be kind to yourself and re-direct yourself back to the target of your practice’s attention


Mindfulness frees You to be You

1. Mindfulness is a way of learning how to relate directly to your life

2. Because it is about your life, no one can do it for you or tell you exactly how to do it

3. It isn’t something you need to get or acquire-You already have it in you, it’s simply a matter of being present

4. The moment you you see that you have been trapped by your thoughts, you gain the freedom to step out of the trap


Jon Kabat-Zinn’s Definition of Mindfulness

Mindfulness is awareness cultivated by paying attention in a sustained and particular way:

-On purpose

-In the present moment and


It is a form of Meditation in which you engage in

1. Systematically regulating your attention and energy

2. Thereby influencing and possibly transforming the quality of your experience

3. In the service of realizing the full range of humanity

4. And of your relationship to others and the world.

(Kabat Zinn, J. (2016) Mindfulness for beginners: Reclaiming the present moment-and your life. Boulder, CO: Sounds True)


Another way of looking at Mindfulness

Mindfulness is awareness which is:

-Attending with tenderness and patience

-Showing up to yourself

-Befriending silence intentionally

-Smiling – direct transmission of heart to heart presence

-Your relationship with your body, mind, and heart

-Heart and Mind are the same word in Asian Language

-Radical recognition of the realization of just “STOPPING” is a radical action

-Focused Meditation: How you live your life relationally by getting out of your own way

-Finding your True Way requires that you get out of your own way

-Recognize the attending and awareness and befriend them


Attitudes that support and strengthen mindfulness

1. Acceptance

2. Nonjudging

3. Nonstriving

4. Letting go/Letting be

5. Trust

6. Beginner’s mind

7. Gratitude and generosity


3 additional attitudes helpful in generating Mindfulness

1. Curiosity: is greatly needed in the work of mindfulness since it helps you to turn toward the present-moment experience to better learn about it and to perceive it fully. You become curious about the moment if you choose to by asking questions such as “What is here that I’m not aware of? Or “What is this?”

2. Kindness: with kindness present, judgment and harshness receded. You see what happens in a different light. Kindness often arises from a deeper more complex understanding of how the heart and mind work – not just for yourself but for everybody.

3. Humor: Humor allows you to take a step back from a particular situation, to see your habits of mind and find the amusement in your all-too-human foibles. You can laugh at yourself which allows you to not allow your mind to be petty and stubborn. You are able to not be overidentified with the situations and be better able to create space

How do you display these attitudes when you go off target?

When you notice your mind goes off

-Notice where you drifted off to

-Don’t criticize yourself

-Lovingly draw your attention back to the focus of your breath, belly, body, senses etc.

-Give caring attention by reeling back your mind to the present

-Help your mind to accept itself as it is

-Don’t take it personally

-Try to stay away from the personal pronouns: I, me, mine etc. when talking about the experience of the now


Compassion and Loving Kindness

Compassion is to “sympathize” or “to feel with” especially to feel the pain of others

Compassion is defined as the wish or impulse to alleviate suffering in another living being-which is different than just to “feel with” the other.

If the suffering is within yourself, you can call this self-compassion

Compassion arises out of the foundation of a general well-wishing and benevolence toward all living beings-this is called loving-kindness

Compassion arises out of loving kindness as a natural response to suffering or pain


Mindfulness is an act of Loving Self

A goal of mindfulness is to grow in love for yourself – Do not exclude yourself from your love

Choose every day to find what is good in your life

Be grounded in yourself

Live your life for you

Do not let your life be diminished by the negatives of others

Do not let others’ negative beings diminish you either


How does Mindfulness work

The only way you can influence the future is in the present

By being fully human you influence your future

Recognize that life is bigger than you and that what is going on in life is a gift with which you will grow and be fully nourished if you just let it be – allow life the freedom to be life the way it is rather than how you want it to be

Ethically the goal is to do no harm to self through mindfulness practice

Goal is to recognize the beauty in self and in others

So the motto is: DO NO HARM … DO A LITTLE GOOD

Coping with physical and emotional pain

Pain is distracting and conflicts with the present moment

-Desire relief from physical pain

-Desire relief from the unpleasant sensations

-Healing – is coming to grips with it in the now

Decide how you are to develop a relationship with pain – which is intense unpleasantness

-Befriend the emotion – as it is

-Turn toward the unpleasantness

-Treat it as a guest freely

-Don’t shy away from it


What you can learn about Mindfulness by embracing pain

Whatever you do to be attentive is mindful as long as it’s nurturing in the here and now

This is the heart of thousands of years old tradition

It is pure awareness

It is not a distraction

It is a way to attend to whatever is going on in the mind or body

It is profound and transcends the essence of suffering, pain, anxiety and comes into awareness of our full humanity

Tune into the feelings at the moment

-Inhabit Awareness

-Let each moment arise so you will feel fully integrated

The Four Foundations of Mindfulness

1. Mindfulness of the Body: the starting point and anchor of mindfulness practice. The meditations used are: Body Scan, Mindful Eating, Mindfulness of Breathing, Mindfulness of Sound and Mindful Walking.

2. Mindfulness of Feeling Tones:  There are three distinct feeing tones; unpleasant, pleasant or neutral. Feeling tones are not emotions they accompany them

3. Mindfulness of the Mind: This practice turns attention to mental activity like thought or emotions as mere objects that can be observed in a non-reactive way

4. Mindfulness of how the Mind Operates: This focuses on the classification of related experiences into specific categories or lists. Such as this lest of the four Foundations of Mindfulness


Awareness is the pathway that makes you human

Embrace your thoughts in awareness

Get the first-person pronouns out of the story of me

Embrace life as a journey which needs to be experienced with full awareness

Healing comes from being present

Healing comes from being Heartful - which takes you out of the center of your focus

Awareness allows you to always be “Here”

Being Here allows you to find the center of awareness which is an integral part of your human repertoire

To engage in awareness, take a lot of motivation and commitment to self to be whole

You are already whole … So, your practice allows you to embrace your wholeness

Mindfulness allows you to see your wholeness – You are already OK – This is a model of healing which allows you to find your own wholeness so you can say with confidence: “Maybe there is something good in me.”

Components of the Focus of Mindfulness

As a human you have: Breath, Body, Mind, Senses and Emotions

You have all these processes in your DNA and the way to get there is by “Not Doing”

You too often over focus on the past, but you in mindfulness focus on the present

So, you need to work through awareness at cultivating your capacity for: knowing, hearing, seeing, feeling, smelling, tasting so that you can become fully humanly heartful

Practice of Mindfulness is living your life fully:

-I feel more in my body

-I know how to regulate myself

-Through my Body Scans I am in this together

-Awareness becomes my default state - for coming to terms with life as it is

-Kindness and self-love grow as I grow in my practice of mindfulness



Mindfulness is present moment nonjudgmental awareness

Mindfulness=Wisdom and Compassion

Learning there is more right with us than what is wrong with us

Learning we are already perfect

Don’t talk about it – BE IT!

Compassion is an active and kind turning toward suffering – your own and that of others – with the aim of relieving it to whatever degree possible.

The only hero of the moment is you as long as you don’t say it.

3. Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR): Evidence Based Treatment of Stress, Anxiety

and Other Medically Related Conditions

Forward, From his own words

Dr Jon Kabat-Zinn in 2013 revised his original work on MBSR called: Full Catastrophe Living, nine years after he found the Stress Reduction Clinic at the University of Massachusetts. From the beginning of MBSR, he states that he bent over backward to structure it and find ways to speak about it that avoided as much as possible the risk of it being seen as Buddhist, ‘New Age,’ ‘Eastern Mysticism’ or just plain ‘flakey.’ To his mind this was a constant and serious risk that would have undermined his attempts to present it as commonsensical, evidence-based, and ordinary, and ultimately a legitimate element of mainstream medical care. This was a challenge given the entire curriculum he created was based on intensive training and practice of meditation and yoga which at the time pretty much defined one element of the “New Age.” He admits he was too shy and worried how his MBSR model would be accepted but then in 2011 he pointed out that: “We can observe an accelerating confluence of dharma with mainstream medicine, healthcare, cognitive science, affective neuroscience, neuroeconomics, business, leadership, primary and secondary education, higher education, the law, indeed, in society as a whole, in this now very rapidly changing world”(Kabat-Zinn, 2011, p.284). He later in this same article stated that: “The challenge for the participants was to just do the work from week to week, in other words, to practice the curriculum as it was being unfolded, and see what would happen. The emphasis was always on awareness of the present moment and acceptance of things as they are, however they are in actuality, rather than a preoccupation with attaining a particular desired outcome at some future time, no matter how desirable it might be. One major principle that we committed to was, and still is, never asking more of our patients in terms of daily practice than we as instructors were prepared to commit to in our own lives on a daily basis” (Kabat-Zinn, 2011, p.290).


In his book Full Catastrophe Living (Revised Edition) 2013, Jon Kabat-Zinn reports: “By the end of eight weeks, when the program comes to an end, their smiles and more relaxed bodies are evident to even the most casual observer. Although they were originally referred to the clinic to learn how to relax and to cope better with their stress, it is apparent that they have learned a lot more than that. Our outcome studies over many years, as well as participants’ anecdotal reports, show that they often leave with fewer and less severe physical symptoms and with greater self-confidence, optimism, and assertiveness. They are more patient with and more accepting of themselves and their limitations and disabilities. They are more confident about their ability to handle physical and emotional pain, as well as the other forces in their lives. They are also less anxious, less depressed, and less angry. They feel more in control, even in very stressful situations that previously would have sent them spinning out of control. In a word, they are handling “the full catastrophe” of their lives, the entire range of life experience, including impending death in some cases, much more skillfully (Kabat-Zinn, 1990. 2013).”

Sources of Material to be used in MBSR programs:

You can get a better look at Jon Kabat-Zinn at this website:

however you will need to use another site to purchase the recorded meditations used in the 8 week MBSR Program. To purchase the three series of MBSR Meditations for the 8-week program go to: or purchase the 3 apps JKZ Series #1, #2 & #3 from your App store.

Mindfulness-Base Stress Reduction Review of the Literature

There has been in recent year significant research to support the use of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MSBR) with patients with various conditions in and out of medical settings. However, in 2002 the findings were that the available evidence at the time did not support a strong endorsement of this approach, but it did encourage and recommended serious investigation in the future (Bishop, 2002). In 2004 a meta-analysis of 64 studies in the previous two decades with only 20 studies meeting the criteria for acceptable quality or relevance results being that MBSR may help a broad range of individuals to cope with their clinical and nonclinical problems (Grossman, Niemann, Schmidt & Walach, 2004). MSBR was found to help clients increase their mindfulness, and wellbeing and decrease their stress and symptoms (Carmody & Baerm 2007). MBSR was found to reduce ruminative thinking and trait anxiety, as well as to increase empathy and self-compassion for individuals who came for help to address handling stress in their lives (Chisea & Serretti, 2009). MBSR was found to assist clients with social anxiety disorder to have improvement in anxiety and depression symptoms and self-esteem as well as reducing emotional reactivity while enhancing emotional regulation (Golden & Gross, 2010). MBSR assisted clients to experience reduction of symptoms of stress and mood disturbance as well as in mindfulness, spirituality and self-compassion (Birnie, Speca & Carlson, 2010). Fifteen studies were evaluated and found that MBSR has the potential for improving overall well-being, quality of life and enhanced health outcomes for its participants in it group therapy format (Merkes, 2010). MBSR was found to be the most popular of all interventions utilizing mindfulness and that it shows substantial benefit for patients who suffer with chronic health conditions (Carlson, 2012). MBSR was found to result in positive signs of healthy signs of measures of growth in greater emotional regulation (Haslam, Wirth & Robb, 2017). Perceived stress, distress tolerance, and mood states showed favorable changes from pre- to post-MBSR meaning the people who had lower stress tolerance before participating in MBSR groups were more likely to experience greater benefits than those who had higher tolerance of stress before participation in such groups (Gawrysiak, et al., 2016). Participants in MBSR groups were found to have significant improvements in the four components of Psychological Capital (Hope, Self-Efficacy, Resilience and Optimism) and a reduction in depression and anxiety (Jain & Singh, 2016). MBSR was found to have stress-reducing effects due to improvements in perseverative cognition and emotion regulation, two “transdiagnostic” mental processes that cut across stress-related disorders (Greeson, et al., 2018).


A number of studies focused on the impact of MBSR on social anxiety. Use of MBSR was associated with reductions in social anxiety and depression and increases in subjective well-being (Jazaieri, Goldin, Werner, Ziv & Gross, 2012).  It was found that with MBSR mindful attitude and disputing anxious thoughts/feelings predicted subsequent decreases in weekly social anxiety during MBSR (Goldin et al, 2017). MBSR used in groups with student ages 17-40 were found to have a decrease in anxiety and avoidance symptoms during social situations (Ye, 2017).

A preliminary Systematic review of the literature in 2011 found that studies up to that date showed that Mindfulness Based Interventions (mBIs) could have nonspecific effects for the reduction of pain symptoms and the improvement of depressive symptoms in patients with chronic pain as well as some improvements in psychologic measures related to chronic pain such as coping with pain following MBIs (Chiesa & Serretti, 2011). In 2017 another meta-analysis of 38 studies found that mindfulness meditation was associated with decrease in pain, reduction of depressive symptoms and increase in quality of life (Hilton, et al., 2017). An analysis of the mechanisms impacted by Mindfulness meditation demonstrated its effectiveness in reducing pain through multiple unique physiological mechanisms (Zeiden & Vago, 2016) including reduction of emotional reactivity, depression and stress (Brown & Becerra, 2017) and improve general mental health in patients with tension headached (Omidi & Zarger, 2015).

Strong encouragement has been made to utilize Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) with patients with chronic pain because it focuses not only on the mind but also the body (Merkes, 2010). MBSR has the potential to address some of the psychosocial factors that are important predictors of poor outcomes (Cherkin, et al., 2014). A study of use of a brief 5 week format of MBSR found that participants demonstrated improvements of increased acceptance through decreased judgment; enhanced observational skills and decreased social isolation resulting in improve psychological health (Bergen-Cico, Possemento & Cheon, 2013). MBSR was found to contribute positively to pain management by lowering anxiety and depression, feelings of controlling pain and acceptance of higher pain which are important dimensions in patients with long-lasting chronic pain (la Cour & Petersen, 2015). Using MBSR resulted in patients revealing significant and clinically relevant improvements in level of pain disability, psychological distress, engagement in life activities, willingness to experience pain and subjective ratings of their current pain (Beaulac & Bailly, 2015). Use of MBSR with women with chronic pelvic pain has shown promise in pain reduction (Crisp, Hastings-Tolsma & Jonscher, 2016). Use of MBSR with chronic low pain demonstrated through the measurement of increase in quality of life and decrease in pain severity (Ardito, et al., 2017). MBSR was used with patients with painful diabetic peripheral neuropathy resulting in reduced pain intensity, pain catastrophizing, depression, perceived stress and improved health related quality of life (Nathan, et al., 2017). Clinical MBSR therapy program intervention improved affective pain, sensory pain and evaluative pain for individual detoxifying from substance abuse (Hosseni, 2017). MBSR was found to improve the quality of life for veterans who suffered sychoimmunological factors of lungs damaged from the toxic chemical in the war zone (Arefuasab, et al., 2016).


In a systematic review of 23 studies using MBSR and MBCT There was found improved depressive symptoms, anxiety, stress, quality of life and physical functioning. The evidence supports the use of MBSR and MBCT to alleviate symptoms, both mental and physical, in the adjunct treatment of cancer, cardiovascular disease, chronic pain, depression, anxiety disorders and in prevention in healthy adults and children (Gotink, et al., 2015). Measures of catastrophizing, self-efficacy, acceptance, and mindfulness, and similar effects showed improvement on these measures among individuals with chronic low back pain once they received either MBSR or Cognitive Behavior Therapy (Turner, et al., 2016). Pain catastrophizing and psychological distress were identified as individual mediators of the relationship between mindfulness and depressive symptoms for people with chronic pain thus supporting the inclusion of the use of mindfulness based cognitive interventions with these individual (Brooks, et al., 2018).

Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction programming has been successful in work with a number of different populations. Academic health care workers were found to have sustained improved stress management, wellbeing and daily spiritual experiences for 1 year post participation in MBSR groups (Geary & Rosenthal, 2011). In looking how participants relate to their experience in MBSR groups participants were found to develop an “observing self” with improvement of emotional health (Kerr, Josyula & Littenberg, 2011). Research demonstrated that residents living in a large urban community experienced significant reduction of distress as well as increase in awareness of everyday life (Evans, Ferrando, Carr & Haglin, 2011). Decreases in symptoms of PTSD and depressive symptoms and reduction of anxious attachment was found using MBSR with female survivors of interpersonal violence (Kelly & Garland, 2016). MBSR used with partners resulted in improved relational health among romantic partners (Khaddouma, Gordon & Strand, 2017).  MBSR was found  to help improve levels of anxiety, depression, emotional reactivity and impulsivity with homeless participants (Maddock, Hevey & Eidemeuller, 2017). Providing MBSR to college students reduced depression, anxiety, stress and anxiety sensitivity through use of a MBSR Bibliotherapy model (Hazlett-Stevens & Oren, 2017). In 2018 Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy was found to be successful with college students suffering from perfectionism by reducing their self-compassion, and reducing impairment caused by perfectionism and increase in mindfulness practices by the students (James & Rimes, 2018)


When compared to a second internet-based intervention (Health Action Process Approach) online Mindfulness training was found to improve the mental health of its participants (Mak, et. al., 2015).  A Web-based Mindfulness 8-week training program on pain intensity, pain acceptance and life satisfaction was demonstrated as being reasonably successful and open for future research and replication (Henriksson, Wasara & Ronnlund, 2016). A meta-analysis of 15 controlled studies found that online mindfulness-based interventions do have a positive impact on improving mental health of its participants (Spijkerman, Pots & Bohlmeijer, 2016). Internet Based Mindfulness Training and Cognitive-Behavioral Training were found to improve the mental health of college students in a randomized trial (Mak et al., 2017). In 2018 a systematic review of 15 studies on the usefulness of web-based mindfulness training programs found it successful in reducing depression and anxiety and in enhancing quality of life and mindfulness skills, particularly in those with clinical anxiety (Sevilla-Llewellyn-Jones, Santesteban-Echarri, Pryor, McGorry, & Alvarez-Jimenez, 2018). There were 3 APPs compared: mindfulness-based program; cognitive behavioral psychoeducation and self-compassion program and all three were found to be efficacious in improving mental well-being and reducing psychological distress (Mak, 2018).

Impact of MBSR and related Mindfulness Intervention on Adults with Cancer
A report on the association of Mindfulness-Based Interventions with anxiety in adults with cancer which was a meta-analysis of 28 studies with over 3,000 patients (. The Mindfulness-Based intervention included Minfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) and Mindfulness-Based Cancer Recovery (MBCR). Of the 28 studies reviewed in the meta-analysis 13 used MBSR. MBSR and these other mindfulness-based intervention were associated with reduction in severity in short-term and medium-term anxiety in adult patients with cancer. Mindfuless was also found to be associated with significant improvement in short-term and medium term depression in these adults with cancer (Oberoi et al., 2020).

Summary of Findings on MBSR

It is clear that MBSR has been shown to be an effective intervention to use with clients and patients who are dealing with stress not only from medical and psychological conditions but also from natural environmental factors. It would serve mental health professionals well to utilize the MBSR model in treating their clients who have come in seeking help to alleviate their current levels of stress.

References MBSR

Ardito, R.B., Pirro, P.S., Re, T.S., Bonapace, I., Bruno, E. & Gianotti, L. (2017). Mindfulness-based stress reduction program on chronic low-back pain: A study investigating the impact on endocrine, physical, and psychologic functioning. The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 23(8), 615-623. DOI: 10.1089/acm.2016.0423


Arefnasab, Z., Babamahmoodi, A.,  Babamahmoodi, F., Noorbala, A.A.,  Alipour, A.,  Panahi, Y,,  Shams, J., Rad, F.R,  Khaze, V, and Ghanei, M. (2016). Mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) and its effects on psychoimmunological factors of chemically pulmonary injured veterans. Iranian Journal of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, 15(6), 476-486.


Beaulac, J. & Bailly, M. (2015). Mindfulness-based stress reduction: Pilot study of a treatment group for patients with chronic pain in a primary care setting. Primary Health Care Research & Development, 16(4), 424-428. DOI: 10.1017/S1463423614000346


Bergen-Cico, D., Possemento, K. & Cheon, S. (2013). Examining the efficacy of a brief mindfulness-based stress reduction (Brief MBSR) program on general health. Journal of American College Health 41(6), 348-360.


Birnie, K., Speca, M. & Carlson, L.E. (2010). Exploring self-compassion and empathy in the context of mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR). Stress and Health 2010. DOI: 10.1002/smi.1305


Bishop, S.R. (2002). What do we really know about Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction? Psychosomatic Medicine 6,:71–84.  0033-3174/02/6401-0071


Brooks, J.M. Blake, J., Iwanaga, K., Chin, C., Colton, B.P., Morrison, B., Deiches, J. & Chan, F. (2018). Perceived mindfulness and depressive symptoms among people with chronic pain. Journal of Rehabilitation 84 (2), 33-39.


Brown, A. & Becerra, R, (2017), Mindfulness for neuropathic pain: A case study. International Journal of Psychology and Psychological Therapy, 17(1),19-37


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Chiesa, A. & Serretti, A. (2011). Mindfulness-based interventions for chronic pain: A systematic review of the evidence. The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 17(1), 83-89.


Crisp, C.D., Hastings-Tolsma, M. & Jonscher, K.R. (2016). Mindfulness-based stress reduction for military women with chronic pelvic pain: A feasibility study. Military Medicine, 181(9), 982-989.


Evans, S., Ferrando, S., Carr, C. & Haglin, D. (2011). Mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) and distress in a community-based sample. Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, 18, 553-558. DOI: 10.1002/cpp.727


Gawrysiak, M.J., Leong, S.H., Grassetti, S.N., Wai, m., Shorey, R.C. & Baime, M.J. (2016). Dimensions of distress tolerance and the moderating effects on mindfulness-based stress reduction, Anxiety, Stress & Coping, 29(5), 552-560.


Geary, C. & Rosenthal, S.L. (2011). Sustained impact of MBSR on stress, well-being and daily spiritual experiences for 1 year in academic health care employees. The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 17(10), 939-944, DOI: 10.1089/acm.2010.0335


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Golden, P.R., Morrison, A.S. Jazaieri, H., Heimberg, R.G. & Gross, J.J. (2017). Trajectories of social anxiety, cognitive appraisal and mindfulness during an RCT of CBGT versus MBSR for social anxiety disorder. Behaviour Research and Therapy 97 1e13.


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Haslam, A., Wirth, M.D. & Robb, S.W., (2017). Relationship between meditation depth and waking salivary alpha-amylase secretion among long term MBSR instructors. Stress and Health 33, 298–306.


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James, K. & Rimes, K.A. (2018). Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy versus pure cognitive behavioural self-help for perfectionism: A pilot randomized Study. Mindfulness, 9, 801–814. DOI 10.1007/s12671-017-0817-8

Jazaieri, H., Goldin, P.R., Werner, K., Ziv, M. & Gross, J.J. 2012).  A randomized trial of MBSR versus aerobic exercise for social anxiety disorder. Journal of Clinical Pschology, 68(7), 715-731, DOI: 10.1002/jclp.21863


Kabat-Zinn, J. (2011). Some reflections on the origins of MBSR, skillful means, and the trouble with maps. Contemporary Buddhism, 12(1), 281-206. DOI: 10.1080/14639947.2011.564844


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Khaddouma, A., Gordon, K.C. & Strand, E.B. (2017) Mindful mates: A pilot study of the relational effects of Mindfulness-based stress reduction on participants and their partners. Family Process, 56(3), 636-651. doi: 10.1111/famp.12226


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Maddock, A., Hevey , D. & Eidemeuller, K. (2017). Mindfulness training as a clinical intervention with homeless adults: A pilot study. International Journal of Mental Health & Addiction, 15, 529–544. DOI 10.1007/s11469-016-9718-7

Mak, W.W.S., Chan, A.T.Y., Cheung, E.Y.L., Lin, C.L.Y. & Ngai, K.C.S. (2015). Enhancing web-based mindfulness training for mental health promotion with the health action process approach: Randomize controlled trial. Journal of Medical Internet 

Research,17(1), e8. doi:10.2196/jmir.3746

Mak, W.W.S., Chio, F.H.N., Chan, A.T.Y., Lui, W.W.S. & Wu, E.K.Y. (2017). The efficacy of internet-based training with telephone support in the enhancement of mental health among college students and young working adults: Randomized controlled trial. Journal of Medical Internet Research,19(3):e84. doi:10.2196/jmir.6737

Mak, W.W.S., Tong, A.C.Y., Yip, S.Y.C., Lui, W.W.S., Chio, F.H.N., Chan, A.T.Y.& Wong, C.C.Y. (2018). Efficacy and moderation of mobile app-based programs for mindfulness-based training, self-compassion training, and cognitive behavioral psychoeducation on mental health: Randomized controlled noninferiority trial. JMRI Mental Health, 5(4), 1-18.

Merkes, M. (2010). Mindfulness-based stress reduction for people with chronic diseases. Australian Journal of Primary Health, 16, 200-210. Doi:10.1071/PY09063


Nathan, H.J., Poulin, P., Wozny, D., Taljaard, M., Smyth, C., Gilron, I., Sorisky, A., Lochnan, H. & Shergill, Y. (2017), Randomized trial of the effect of mindfulness-based stress reduction on pain-related disability, pain intensity, health-related quality of life, and A1C in patients with painful diabetic peripheral neuropathy. Clinical Diabetes Journals 35/5/294. 

DOI: 10.2337/cd17-0077


Oberoi, S., Yang, J., Woodgate, R.L., Niraula, S., Banerji, S., Israels, S.J., Altman,G., Beattie, S., Rabbani, R., Askin, N., Gupta, A., Sung, L., Abou-Setta, A.M. and Zarychanski, R. (2020). Association of mindfulness-based interventions with anxiety severity in adults with cancer A systematic review and meta-analysis. JAMA Network Open 3(8), e2012598.

Ornidi, A. & Zarger, F. (2015). Effects of mindfulness-based stress reduction on perceived stress and psychological health in patients with tension headaches. Journal of Research in Medical Sciences, 20, 1058-1063. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.12598


Petersen, M. & La Cour, P. (2016). Mindfulness—what works for whom? Referral,

feasibility, and user perspectives regarding patients with mixed chronic pain. The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 22(4), 298-305. DOI: 10.1089/acm.2015.0310


Sevilla-Llewellyn-Jones, J., Santesteban-Echarri, O., Pryor, I., McGorry, P. & Alvarez-Jimenez, M. (2018). Web-based mindfulness intervebntions for mental health treatment: Systematic review and meta-analysis. JMIR Ment alHealth, 5(3), e10278. doi:10.2196/10278

Spijkerman, M.P.J., Pots, W.T.M. & Bohlmeijer, E.T. (2016). Effectiveness of online mindfulness-based interventions in improving mental health: A review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Clinical Psychology Review, 45, 102–114

Turner, J.A., Anderson, M.L., Balderson, B.H., Cook, A.J., Sherman, K.J. & Cherkin, D.C. (2016). Mindfulness-based stress reduction and cognitive-behavioral therapy for chronic low back pain: Similar effects on mindfulness, catastrophizing, self-efficacy, and acceptance in a randomized controlled trial. Pain, 257(11), 2434-2444. 10.1097/j.pain.0000000000000635.

Ye, H. (2017). Impact of mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) on student’s social anxiety: A randomized controlled trial. NeuroQuantology, 15(4),101-106. doi: 10.14704/nq.2017.15.4.1134


Zeidan, F. & Vago, D.R. (2016). Mindfulness meditation-based relief: A mechanistic account. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 1373, 114-127.  doi: 10.1111/nyas.13153

4. Bibliography of MBSR Related Books

Full Catastrophe Living (Revised Edition): Using the Wisdom of Your Body and Mind to Face Stress, Pain, and Illness


Kabat-Zinn, J. (1990 & 2013). Full Catastrophe Living: using the Wisdom of Your Body and Mind to Face Stress, Pain and Illness. Bantam Books: New York, NY.

Wherever You Go, There You Are: Mindfulness Meditation In Everyday Life


Kabat-Zinn, J. (1994 & 2005). Wherever you go there you are: Mindfulness Meditation in Everyday life. Hachette Books: New York, NY.

Coming to Our Senses: Healing Ourselves and the World Through Mindfulness 1st (first) edition


Kabat-Zinn, J. (2005). Coming to Our Senses: Healing Ourselves and the World through Mindfulness. Hachette Books: New York, NY.

Mindfulness for Beginners: Reclaiming the Present Moment and Your Life(Book & CD))


Kabat-Zinn, J. (2012 & 2016). Mindfulness for beginners: Reclaiming he present moment and your life. Sounds True, Inc: Boulder, Colorado


Meditation Is Not What You Think: Mindfulness and Why It Is So Important

Kabat-Zinn, J. (2018). Meditation is not what you think: Mindfulness and why it is so important (book One). Hachette Books: New York, NY.

Falling Awake: How to Practice Mindfulness in Everyday Life


Kabat-Zinn, J. (2018). Falling Awake: how to practice mindfulness in everyday life (Book two). Hachette Books: New York, NY.

The Healing Power of Mindfulness: A New Way of Being


Kabat-Zinn, J. (2018). The Healing Power of Mindfulness: A New way of Being (book Three). Hachette Books: New York, NY.


Mindfulness for All

Kabat-Zinn, J. (2018). Mindfulness for All: The Wisdom to Transform the World (Book Four). Hachette Books: New York, NY.\

Calming Your Anxious Mind: How Mindfulness and Compassion Can Free You from Anxiety, Fear, and Panic

Brantley, J. & Kabat-Zinn, J. (2007). Calming your anxious mind (Second Edition). New Harbinger Publications, Oakland, CA

The Mindfulness-Based Emotional Balance Workbook: An Eight-Week Program for Improved Emotion Regulation and Resilience


Cullen, M. & Brito Pons, G. (2015). The Mindfulness-Based Emotional Balance Workbook. New Harbinger Publications: Oakland, CA.

Stahl, B. & Goldstein, E. (2019). A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook (Second Edition). New Harbinger Publications: Oakland, CA

A Clinician's Guide to Teaching Mindfulness: The Comprehensive Session-by-Session Program for Mental Health Professionals ...

Wolf, C. & Serpa, J.G. (2015). A Clinician’s Guide to Teaching Mindfulness. New Harbinger Publications: Oakland, CA


5. Meditations Available to use in Mindfulness Training
JKZ Series Apps

JKZ Apps Each of the three volumes of Jon Kabat-Zinn's Meditations are also available at the Apple Apps store and Google Play. Each volume can be downloaded to your devices for easy availability. Each App costs $10.00.

JKZ Series 1 on Apple Store at:

JKZ Series 2 on Apple Store at:

JKZ Series 3 on Apple Store at:

Jon Kabat-Zinn 1 on Google Play at:

Jon Kabat-Zinn 2 on Google Play at:

Jon Kabat-Zinn 3 on Google Play at:

JKZ Series 1

Track 1: Body Scan Meditation (45 min)

Track 2: Mindful Yoga 1 (45 min)

Track 3: Sitting Meditation (40 min)

Track 4: Mindful Yoga 2 (45 min)


JKZ Series 2

Tracks 1, 2, 3 Sitting Meditations (10-, 20- & 30-minute versions)

Tracks 4, 5, 6 Lying Down Meditations (10-, 20- & 30-minute versions)

Track 7 Mountain Meditation (20 min)

Track 8 Lake Meditation (20 min)

Track 9 Silence with bells (custom duration)


JKZ Series 3

1. Breathscape (20 min)
2. Bodyscape (20 min)
3. Breathscape and Bodyscape – More Silence (20 min)
4. Soundscape (27 min)
5. Mindscape (20 min)
6. Dying Before You Die (30 min)
7. Nowscape (30 min)
8. Walking Meditation (10 min)
9. Heartscape (47 min)
10. Lifescape (12 min)


Meditations downloadable form Jon Kabat-Zinn’s Mindfulness for Beginners

1. Eating Raisin Meditation

2. Mindfulness of Breathing

3. Whole Body Mindfulness

4. Mindfulness of Thinking

5. Pure Awareness Practice


Meditations downloadable from Stahl & Goldstein’s A Mindfulness;-Based Stress Reduction Workbook

1. Mindful Raisin Eating

2. Mindful Check in

3. Mindful Breathing (10 & 15 minute versions)

5. Mindful Walking Meditation

6. Body Scan Meditation (15, 30 & 45 minute versions)

7. Chronic Pain Meditation

8. Sitting Meditation (15, 30 & 45 minute versions)

9. Mindful Yoga Introduction

10. Mindful Lying Yoga (15, 30 & 45 minute versions)

11. Anxiety Meditation

12. Depression Meditation (10, 20 & 30 minute versions)

13. Insomnia Meditation

14. Mindful Standing Yoga (15, 30 & 45 minute versions)

15. Self-Compassion Meditation (10, 20 & 30 minute versions)

16. Loving Kindness Meditation (15, 30 & 45 minute versions)

17. Growing Joy Meditation (10, 20 & 30 minute versions)


Meditations downloadable from Wolf & Serpa’s  A Clinician’s Guide to Teaching Mindfulness

1. Introduction to Meditation Exercises

2. Ground Meditation – Wolfe (5 min)

3. Grounding Meditation – Serpa (5 min)

4. Body Scan: Short-Lying down (15 min)

5. Body Scan (15 min)

6. Affectionate Body Scan (15 min)

7. Breath: Mindfulness of Breathing (15 min)

8. Breath: Mindfulness of Breathing (10 min)

9. Breath:  Compassionate Breathing (15 min)

10. Mindfulness of Breath with Spaciousness (10 min)

11. Mindfulness of Sounds (15 min)

12. Mindfulness of Sounds (10 min)

13. Loving Kindness (Metta): Short (10 min)

14. Loving Kindness (Metta) for Loved Other & Self (20 min)

15. Loving Kindness (Metta) for Vets (25 min)

16. Supportive Touch and Self-Compassion with Instructions (18 min)

17. Supportive Touch and Self-Compassion Exercise Only (9 min)

18. Exploring Unpleasant Neutral Pleasant Exercise (10 min)

19. Yoga: Chair Yoga – Short (15 min)

20.  Yoga: Chair Yoga – Long (45 min)

21. Body Scan : Long (35 min)

Meditations Downloadable from Cullen & Brito Pons: The Mindfulness-Based Emotional Balance Workbook:
1. The Well (7 min)
2. The Three Questions (7 min)
3. Mindfulness of Breathing (11 min)
4. The Body Scan (27 min)
5. Breath Awareness and Mindfulness of Feelings (26 min)
6. Breath Awareness and Awareness of Thoughts (20 min)
7. Forgiveness (21 min)
8. Mindfulness of Breath, Thoughts and Mental State (20 min)
9. Kindness Practice (21 min)
10 Compassion Practice (22 min)
11. Integrated Practice (22 min)

6. Mindful Chair Yoga Practices that can be used for

MBSR Training


New Chair Yoga for Zoom Training

Other Chair Yoga Options

Mindful Chair Yoga: A Brief 15 Minute Beginner's Practice:


Mindful Chair Yoga: A Complete Beginner's Practice (40 minutes):


Mindful Chair Yoga: A 45 Minute Practice:


Mindful Chair Yoga: A Practice for the Legs (30 min):


Mindful Chair Yoga (30 min) Cultivating a Healthy Relationship with Thoughts and Feelings:


Mindful Chair Yoga (45 min) Cultivating a Healthy Relationship with Thoughts and Feelings:


Mindful Chair Yoga: A Playful Practice (20 min):


Mindful Chair Yoga: A 45 Minute Practice:Through Playfulness

Videos or PowerPoints for Metaphors used in Mindfulness Training

 Shel Silverstein's The Missing Piece  at:

The Little Engine That Could at:

Shel Silverstein's The Missing Piece Meets the Big O at:

Spencer Johnson's Who Moved My Cheese at:

Creating the NOW Attitude “Our Iceberg is Melting” Model at:

8. Handouts that can be Used in Mindfulness Training

Handout 1: 9 Dot Exercise Click here

Handout 2: Raisin Exercise Click here

Handout 3: Formal and Informal Log Click Here

Handout 4: STOP for One Minute Breathing TIme  Click Here

Handout 5: Soften, Soothe, Allow  Click Here

Handout 6: Develop a Mindful Practice of Your Own  Click Here

Handout 7. Cultivating Mindfulness  Click Here

Handout 8: Suggestions for Daily Practice  Click Here

Handout 9: The Three Elements of Self Compassion  Click Here
 NOTE: In providing mindfulness training It has been found that many of the participants found it difficult to close their eyes during the JKZ meditations. For this reason you can opt to provide the following two documents to participants to do as homework. They are an explanation of the use of Mandellas in meditations and the second are three sample Mandellas to fill in. You can also also give a box of 8 crayons to the participants so that they can color in the Mandellas offered:

Handout 10:  Mandala Meditation Instructions Click Here to Download

Handout 11:  3 sample Mandalas for Meditation Practice Click Here to Download 

9. 17 Mindfulness Exercises

The following 17 Mindfulness Exercises are available for purchase in PDF format from: 

17 Mindfulness Exercises

1. Body Scan Meditation (Recorded Meditation Available)

2. Breathing Together

3. Creating Quiet Time

4. Cultivating Mindfulness through Single-Tasking

5. Distinguishing Physical from Emotional Hunger

6. Enjoying Food Mindfully

7. Increasing Awareness of Cognitive Distortions

8. Informal Mindfulness Practices

9. Mindful Listening

10. Mindful Speaking

11. Mindful Walking (Recorded Meditation Available)

12. Mindfully Meeting Other People

13. Open Monitoring Meditation (Recorded Meditation Available)

14. Sitting Meditation (Recorded Meditation Available)

15. Three Minute Breathing Space

16. Using Photography to Increase Savoring

17. Using Story Telling to elicit Automatic Judgements