Mind Your Body

Mens sana in corporé sano 

What is Mindfulness Based Stillness Meditation (MBSM)?

MBSM is an 8-week program developed by the Gawler Cancer Foundation. It is a gradual approach to meditation combining, relaxation, mindfulness and stillness. 

MBSM has a particular focus on emotions and learning to simply “be” with our feelings without judgement. Freeing ourselves from stress in our mind and body, showing ourselves compassion and kindness leads to increased happiness, gratitude and connection with life. It creates the space for healing mind, body and spirit. 

This program of meditation is designed to assist people to learn Mindfulness if they are new to meditation. It is also for people familiar with the practice who enjoy meditating with others and wish to develop meditation in a supportive space. 

While there is explanation, guidance and discussion the emphasis in the sessions is on practice.

What is mindfulness?

Mindfulness allows us to pay attention and be in present moment awareness. It enables us to re-discover peace and stillness, generating relaxation of mind and body. It is known to reduce stress, nourish the soul, provide deeper and richer experiences and allows us to live life in the present rather than rushing through it.

How will I benefit? 

An internet search will reveal hundreds of independent research studies confirming the benefits of mindfulness and meditation on both physical and psychological well being for women who have experienced breast cancer. This 8-week program will assist you to embed mindfulness and meditation into your daily life. 

With practice, you will start to experience the many benefits for yourself, including:

  • To be more connected to yourself, to others and to the natural world
  • To increase self-awareness, self-acceptance and self-compassion
  • To become less judgmental of self and others
  • To experience uncomfortable/vulnerable thoughts and feelings safely
  • To develop kindness, compassion and courage
  • To have more direct contact with the world, rather than living through your thoughts
  • To learn that everything changes; that thoughts and feelings come and go
  • To experience more calm and peacefulness
  • To develop resources for facing fear, sadness, anger and grief
  • To improve mental clarity, concentration, relaxation and sleep
  • To balance blood pressure and the immune system
  • To improve energy level and reduce fatigue   

You will learn how to meditate using mindfulness. Each week over 90 minutes you will be introduced to new mindfulness practices and meditations along with some theory, practice and discussion in each session.  

Topics include:

  • Styles of meditation
  • What is mindfulness and meditation
  • How mindfulness and meditation practice benefits our health
  • The stress and relaxation response
  • An overview of healing
  • Two aspects of the mind - thinking and awareness
  • Dealing with emotions
  • How to incorporate mindfulness into everyday life

 Why should I attend this particular program?

This 8-week Mindfulness-Based Stillness Meditation Program was developed by Dr Ian Gawler and Paul Bedson from the Gawler Cancer Foundation in Yarra Junction, Victoria, Australia. The Gawler Cancer Foundation was established in 1983 and has been running retreats since 2004 to help people prevent illness and improve their general health and well being.  

This program is being run specifically for women who have experienced breast cancer. The program is limited to a small number of participants. You will be given a workbook as well as recorded meditations to assist your home practice. 

 If you wish to attend the program you will have to make a commitment to yourself including attending all 8 weeks* and completing the daily homework. Attending the program is only the start of your mindfulness and meditation journey. Continuing to practice what you have learnt is essential to gain most benefit. *if you have an emergency and miss a week Louise will help you to catch up. 

 Who runs the program?

The facilitator Louise has been engaged in a personal meditation practice for over 25 years. Louise has trained as a Mindfulness Based Stillness Meditation teacher with Ian and Ruth Gawler and Paul and Maia Bedson at the Gawler Cancer Foundation. 

Louise is a Registered Nurse and Clinical Nurse Specialist caring for women having oncological treatment for breast cancer.

What next?

If you would like to find out more you can contact Louise through the Mind Your Body website or Facebook page, via email or phone. She would love to hear from you.