Today: Jun 16, 2024

Students can find balance by taking a mindful journey

Photo Courtesy | midlandlibrary.com “I Am” was shown as part of the movie night kick-off of the building a better you series.

Robin Glynn – General Assignment Reporter –

The Counseling Center will spend the spring semester helping student’s better grasp being mindful and gain happiness in their life.

Photo Courtesy | mindfulnesscenter.orgThe Mindful Journey program is based on the book “Cultivating Lasting Happiness” by Terry Fralich.
Photo Courtesy | mindfulnesscenter.org
The Mindful Journey program is based on the book “Cultivating Lasting Happiness” by Terry Fralich.

According to Denise Zack, counselor at Counseling Services, The Mindful Journey program is based on a book by Terry Fralich called “Cultivating Lasting Happiness: A 7 Step Guide To Mindfulness.”

On the Counseling Services website, the author states “No matter what your life is like at the present moment, no matter what your circumstances, mindfulness can bring increased clarity and insight into your life.”

“The reason we choice to do it is because in the fall, we base our programming on adjusting to the university, learning how to study and get yourself going,” said Zack. “In the spring time, we like to delve a little bit deeper into more pertinent issues like success in everyday life.”

Zack said the reason they do the program is to support students as they are walking through their academic journey here at Southern. Other things they find a lot of are students suffering. Zack said the suffering is generally caused by thoughts about past regrets or concerns about the future.

“What this program is focusing on is using a different part of your brain to focus on the very present moment,” said Zack. “The suffering is generally found in the mid-brain, where the emotional triggers are.”

Zack said every week, students will attend and learn a different skill through activities and specific skill-building lessons and through discussions with other people.

“Not only do they learn to incorporate mindfulness into their everyday life, they will be able to understand how their own brain works,” said Zack.

The steps are The Witness, Sense of Old Patterns, Self-Regulation, Life Story, Insight Development, New Realities and A Personal Strategy.

Zack said the first step is to acknowledge what is affecting your attitude and preventing you from being happy. The second step is understanding the patterns that are holding you back. The third is to take back control. The fourth step is to develop a clear overview of life experiences; what brain functions and old patterns are holding you back.

Photo Courtesy | midlandlibrary.com“I Am” was shown as part of the movie night kick-off of the building a better you series.
Photo Courtesy | midlandlibrary.com
“I Am” was shown as part of the movie night kick-off of the building a better you series.

The fifth step, according to Counseling Services, is to empower students to identify their life stories from a different, insightful perspectives so that they can disengage from what holds them back from happiness.  The sixth is to take back your life and rewrite the story. The final step is to create a plan to continue mindfulness in life.

Cate Barber, graduate intern for the Counseling Center, said the brain is wired based on thoughts.

“You wake up and you don’t know what day you are going to have,” said Barber. “You can say ‘Oh I am going to have a bad day,’ and then your perspective is kind of tilted that you are having a bad day and everything is bad and everything you see is worse and against you.”

Barber said if you put your brain in a positive mind-frame and unfortunate things do happen, it should not derail your whole day or attitude.

“I think that piece is really crucial because people feed off each other’s suffering.”

Barber said a lot of times, it is never ‘I am sorry that happened to you,’ rather it is ‘That happened? Well this happened to me.’

“I hope this is a skill that can really connect with students this semester and change the culture of negativity on campus,” said Barber.

 

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