Esteem Psychology is pleased to offer small group treatment programs (6 to 10 participants). Our group room provides a relaxed and welcoming environment. Anyone is welcome to register for our group programs, which run for 5-10 sessions.
If you are currently under a Mental Health Care Plan, you may be eligible to attend our group programs at no cost (bulk-billed). Alternatively, you may be eligible for a rebate for the cost of the program through your private health insurance provider.
What is Mindfulness?
Much of the time, our mind wanders off to the future or the past, filling our attention with worrying thoughts, anxiety, catastrophic thinking, rumination, self-judgment etc. While we are in this ‘autopilot’ mode, we are not actually present in our lives, and may even actively avoid important things in our lives in order to avoid the emotional pain associated with these types of thoughts. This is a great shame, as we only have this one precious life… It would be nice to be present for it.
Mindfulness aims to cultivate the ability to be fully present and engaged in whatever you are doing in your life, and to be less caught up in the endless stream of thoughts your mind produces. Mindfulness allows us to relate differently to our emotional pain, and to respond to it more effectively. It is not a “feel good” strategy – rather, it is a skill which allows us to cope with painful feelings and thoughts more effectively. And when painful thoughts and feelings lose their impact over us, we often “feel good” as a by-product. When we are being mindful we are focusing on our present experience, not caught up in the past or future, or judging and struggling with whatever is here right now. We are present, awake, and open to all of our experience.
Who will benefit from learning mindfulness?
Mindfulness practice can be beneficial to anyone experiencing diminished life functioning as a result of anxiety and depression, or any other difficulties which cause them to be overly focused on unhelpful thoughts (e.g. worry) or distressing emotions. Mindfulness is particularly helpful to individuals who engage in a high level of behavioural avoidance due to unpleasant thoughts or feelings (including anxiety and panic, low self-esteem, self-criticism, low motivation etc.). Learning mindfulness can assist people to manage their distress more effectively, and to re-engage with their life. There is a strong body of research supporting the benefits of mindfulness.
Structure of the program
The aim of this program is to provide participants with the opportunity to learn and practice mindfulness. Each session will involve learning new mindfulness skills and enhancing existing skills, and thus is open to individuals with different levels of mindfulness experience. There will be 10 one-hour sessions within each group block, each focusing on different aspects of mindfulness. Attendance at all 10 sessions is not required, although it is recommended. This program is run multiple times throughout the year, during business hours and after hours.
We plan to provide group treatment programs for the following presenting issues, once we have sufficient participant numbers registered: