8 week mindfulness course: Calm mind open heart
About this course
Calm Mind Open Heart:
During these times of pronounced change and uncertainty, calmness of mind and openness of heart is perhaps even more important than ever. Many of my past participants have been in touch over these months to express their gratitude for having completed this course due to how it has better equipped them to meet this experience in particular and life generally with more wisdom and compassion.
Therefore, here is an invitation for you to cultivate those positive habits of mind and heart, while at the same time learning methods to let be and let go, transform or see through negative ones that do not serve you or others. An invitation to develop the light of awareness and warmth of kindness, by offering yourself this opportunity of an 8 week mindfulness course and its potential benefits.
What is mindfulness?
In essence, mindfulness is a training in how to simply be; relaxed but also aware, moment-by-moment within changing experience - whatever that might be - with a growing sense of embodied presence, acceptance, compassion and wisdom. This involves learning and practising a number of mindfulness meditation methods, alongside innovative positive psychology techniques in a structured and sequenced way over a period of time.
Training in mindfulness can help you become more aware of the mind's habits, which can then help slowly free you from counter-productive habitual patterns by letting them go or transforming them by acting in a way that is wiser, kinder or more creative for yourself and others in the moment.
One begins to realise that reality is to a large extent an interpretation of events based on these habits and the current mood. This realisation opens up more space, more possibility and more freedom in experience for transformation, empowering you to be more of who you truly are.
Mindfulness allows you to recognise the gap between your thoughts, emotions, sensations, perceptions, impulses and your awareness of them, providing you with the choice to respond rather than react or perhaps realise that no response is necessary.
Instead, you may choose to simply be, relaxing in awareness as thoughts, emotions, sensations, impulses and perceptions come and go like clouds in the sky-like nature of mind. In this way, your mind can become more flexible as it begins to serve you rather than have you be the servant of the often wandering and busy mind.
Mindfulness is a life-skill that anyone can benefit from connecting with and training in. Whether it is to help with life's stresses, anxiety, depression, chronic pain, general well-being or to explore the dimensions of our mind and the experience of what it means to be a human being.
Benefits of mindfulness
- a deeper sense of connection with yourself
- more self-awareness
- better self-care
- improved way of relating to your thoughts, emotions, sensations and impulses
- improved self-confidence
- improved relationships
- increased sense of appreciation and gratitude for life
- reduced stress levels
- reduced anxiety
- reduction in depressive relapse
- builds resilience for demanding and stressful situations
- increased feelings of well-being
- supports chronic pain management
- improved ability to focus and concentrate
- increased creativity
- increased productivity
- better communication
- better decision-making abilities
Training in mindfulness, like anything, needs to be consistent to bring results and that's what a structured eight-week course, complete with group work and individual home practise is designed to do.
The course will provide you with the opportunity to learn a combination of mindfulness-based stress reduction/cognitive therapy techniques, through formal and informal practices that can be easily integrated into your daily life, including mindfulness of eating, breath, bodily sensations, thoughts, feelings, sounds and movement, as well as a number of other techniques and thought experiments that support the process.
Who is the course suitable for?
Suitable for those completely new to mindfulness practice and those with an established practice who want to benefit from the structure of the course, the support of a group and an instructor to help maintain and deepen their practice.
The course will be supported by:
- A weekly email and notes helping you explore and deepen your understanding of the themes covered in your weekly sessions.
- Weekly home practice guidance and record sheets to help you keep track of your practice.
- Online guided audio meditations to guide and support you in your home practice.
- Email support in between sessions with Cesare to discuss or elucidate any points emerging during your home practice.
- Certificate of completion (issued only if attendance is 75% or more)
Each of the eight sessions will follow one of eight mutually supportive themes, these eight themes are:
1. Waking Up To Automatic Pilot
2. Living in Our Heads
3. Gathering the Scattered Mind
4. Recognising the Mind's Habits
5. Allowing and Letting Be
6. Thoughts Are Not Facts
7. Taking Care of Ourself
8. Maintaining and Deepening Practice
The course will also include a silent retreat day on the weekend of the seventh week, where you will be guided through the techniques and methods learnt on the course while being in silence together, allowing us to deepen into and consolidate the practice we have put in over the weeks. The day retreat is a highly recommended aspect of the course.
***Please note that this course includes a daily commitment of between 25 and 45 minutes of home practice in-between sessions, based on your inclination and situation. The home practice elements are a core feature of these courses, enabling participants to become familiar with them and explore their cumulative benefits. Simply attending the taught components of these courses, although useful, won't allow for the complete experience and benefits the course is designed to provide***
***Prior to the start of the course there will be a questionnaire (to assess prior experience and any physical and/or mental health needs, taking into account current Government advice around Covid-19 and any related personal health risks) for all prospective participants to complete and return as a prerequisite to being accepted onto the course, for yours and everyone else's well-being and safety***
Past participant feedback
"This course is brilliant!"
"I found the mindfulness course truly inspiring. Cesare delivered a fantastic training with an informative yet very personal and individual feel. It has changed the way I live my life. Every moment feels more sacred and my mind feels calmer."
"I loved the open group discussions and the rapport I had with the group as a whole."
"The mindfulness course has transformed many aspects of my mind and the way I react/over analyse situations. This has allowed me to create more nourishing relationships in my life."
"It has allowed me to work towards becoming and maintaining my best self."
"Learning to be more mindful has allowed me to become more grounded, I am now more aware of my thoughts and actions."
"I have understood the power of giving time and taking care of myself, and how this energy has an expansive effect on those around me."
"I have learned how to connect my mind with my body and this has helped me release tension in problem areas."
"The mindfulness course has given me a strength to be kind to myself - to allow myself some breathing space which has enabled me to be of benefit to others."
Your mindfulness instructor
Cesare completed his Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy Teacher Training Retreat with the Oxford Mindfulness Centre, University of Oxford and further Teacher Training with the Mindfulness In Schools Project as well as training in Mindfulness Based Compassionate Living with the Sussex Mindfulness Centre (NHS).
He is a registered mindfulness teacher with the British Association of Mindfulness Based Approaches (BAMBA), an associate teacher of Tenterden Mindfulness Group, co-founder of RUN:ZEN - Mindfulness for Running and a mindfulness supervisor, currently delivering mindfulness courses, training and retreats for the public, private, public and third-sector organisations. Cesare is also a qualified counsellor (BACP) with Kent and Medway NHS, and runs a successful private practice.
Cesare began as a teacher in secondary schools. He later went onto work in education, training and employability skills within UK prisons, and then specialised in addiction and substance misuse counselling.
Since 2008, Cesare’s own meditation practise has been under the guidance of internationally acclaimed Buddhist teachers. He set up Bodhicharya Kent, a not-for-profit group which provides teachings and practice in meditation and Buddhism. There he has been facilitating thriving ongoing weekly meditation classes for the Kent community in Rochester since 2013, under the guidance of his main teacher, Ringu Tulku Rinpoche.
Visit the website here.
Quaker Meeting House, Northgate, Rochester, Kent, ME1 1LS
The space used is large, with triple height ceilings, a one-way system into and out of the space, chairs set out for social distancing and has hand sanitiser available. Windows will also be kept ajar to keep the air fresh.
It has been deemed that 25 people can safely social distance within the space however participant numbers shall be kept to 15.
You will need to bring your own refreshments.
You will need to follow current Government Covid-19 advice and guidance.
Sessions will be between 2 and 2.5 hours and the start time will be from 7:00 pm.
Thursdays, September 10th, 17th, 24th and 30th, 1st, 8th, 15th and 22nd of October.
Silent Day Retreat
10:30 am - 4:30 pm The Saturday or Sunday on the weekend of the seventh week (date and venue TBC).
£250* (Flexible payment plans available, so please do get in touch as I would like to help accommodate you).
To book your place now, please follow the PayPal link here.
You can make a bank transfer (preferred). Please email for bank details, thank you.
If you have any questions at all regarding the course or payment or anything at all, then please do get in touch via email or with the listed above.
Hoping to see you in September and accompany you on your mindfulness journey.
*If your circumstances change:
If paying via a payment plan, then your initial deposit will be non-refundable.
If paying via a payment plan or in full, then I can offer 100% refund of total payment (minus the initial deposit for payment plans) made up to one month before the start of the course or 50% refund of the total payment made up to two weeks before the start of the course.
Hosted by Cesare Saguato
My past experience, integrative training and continuing professional development, provide me with the flexibility to draw on a number of theories and approaches (Person Centred, Existential, Psychodynamic, Cognitive, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Mindfulness). I believe in an integrative and holistic approach to personal well-being.