|Research shows empathy can give rise to personal distress or compassion. Which one is showing up for you?
Compassion Cultivation Training (CCT) is an educational program designed to help you reverse the effect of empathic distress, or negative feelings, and instead increase positive emotions, such as feelings of love and affiliation. Developed at Stanford University Medical School’s CCARE by a team of contemplative scholars, clinical psychologists, and researchers, CCT can help overcome the empathic distress that some people encounter in their profession or personal lives, improving your resilience, and ultimately, helping you feel more connected to others, providing an overall sense of well-being.
What to expect: A two hour weekly class that includes discussion, and in-class partner and small-group listening and communication exercises
Daily meditation practices to develop kindness, empathy, compassion for others, and self-compassion
Real-world “homework” assignments to practice compassionate thoughts and action
A compassionate attitude can greatly reduce the distress people feel in difficult situations and can become a profound personal resource in times of stress. Thupten Jinpa, the senior author of CCT, describes the program in these words: “What CCT aims to do is to make people become more aware and more connected with their compassionate nature so that their instinctive response to a given situation will come from that compassionate understanding standpoint rather than negative excessive judgement.”
There is a growing body of research which asserts the value of cultivating compassion. As a wholesome state of mind, compassion is essential to individual well-being. As an ethical orientation, compassion is also essential for sustaining rich nourishing relationships. As a social force, it is crucial for addressing global, socio-economic dilemmas.
Participants probe real-world questions such as: What is compassion? What blocks it? Are there limits to compassion? Is there a difference between empathy and compassion? If living from compassion is all it is cracked up to be, why is self-compassion so difficult? How do I enhance my resilience while decreasing worry? How do I jumpstart a sustainable meditation practice? How do I have more meaningful connections with family, friends and co-workers?
You will learn through instruction, meditation, mindfulness and experiential exercises how to cultivate the daily-life skills needed to strengthen the qualities of compassion, courage and resilience. We will discuss how you can “move your attention at will, and how attention is like a spotlight,” as Dr. Paul Gilbert says, “whatever it shines on is what becomes brighter in the mind…”
Not only has cultivating compassion been found to reduce the frequency and intensity of destructive emotions (such as anger and hatred), it is also a sustainable response to the suffering of others, and actually alleviates empathetic distress and burnout. Consequently, Compassion Cultivating Training is relevant to those in health and human services roles who regularly witness suffering in their work. The program is also of value to anyone challenged by suffering in themselves or in our world. This includes parents, caregivers, educators, healthcare professionals, therapists, executives, public servants, and people in a wide range of professions and life contexts. No previous meditation experience is required.
Class Dates: 8-week course
Wednesdays, February 7 – March 28, 2018 | 6:00pm – 8:00pm
$320.00 regular registration
$325.00: Registration with a certificate of completion to use for CEUs
$240.00 (25% off): UW Affiliate Registration, which requires department approval and budget number
Scholarships and income-based reduced fee options available. Please see the registration page for details, or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Wednesday evenings, February 7 – March 28, 6:00pm – 8:00pm. The cost is $320.00.
Scholarships and income-based reduced fee options available. Please see the registration page for details, register here.