Reply To: Week 4 Homework Assignment (Mindfulness in Behavioral Health)

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Jane Thurston

1.I had a number of physical experiences while urge surfing. I was hungry and felt rolling sensations of hunger and envisioned a wave carry my hunger with it until if dissipated. I felt anxiety that I was having to sit with my hunger and not eat. Would I succeed? I felt heat and tingling and then as the waves grew smaller and smaller, I did let go of the uncomfortable sensations of being hungry. Then I felt peaceful. I experienced having the ability to ride out my urge to eat, to let go of the urge not only to eat but to eat a lot of sugar. I have an addiction to sugar and this exercise was effective in letting the feelings go. I will integrate this exercise in my practice with clients who have mental illnesses and issues with addiction to teach them that they have the energy to learn mindfulness when the energy is gently and empathically redirected away from urges, stress and thoughts that bog them down by using this urge surfing exercise.
2. I picked Loving kindness and Soft Belly, including the variations of this exercise that was presented. Soft Belly relaxed me and evoked feelings of warmth, contentment and self-acceptance. The sensations were smiling, soft compassion and empathy and release. I was able to set my negative thoughts beside the positive, peaceful thoughts and be aware that my energy could be shifted and changed. I liked Loving Kindness a lot. I was able to focus on being kind to myself and to share this loving kindness with the 2 people I held in my consciousness. The smiling the warmth, the peacefulness felt expansive and space to feel a higher presence. I can imagine being able to adapt these exercises quite easily and effectively by evaluating what the issues each person is having in the moment, whether the issues are addiction or other mental health issues and adapting each exercise to their address those needs.
3. There was a time in my life when I lived with mindfulness and a connection with a higher being, a higher sense of self. Over the years I gave in to feeling like life was a grind that had to be gotten through. I have enjoyed this course as it is of getting back on track. May I be safe, happy, healthy in all things and my I live with ease in my heart and in my daily life. I reconnect in small ways but want to give it greater value. I envision bring mindfulness practices into my practice through having more peace within myself and in helping my clients tune into their own sense of connection, well-being and love for themselves that may bring them hope that they can overcome their suffering.