MINDFULNESS IN TIMES OF PANDEMIC

***

Estimated duration: 60 min. without dissemination

Aims of this module: to learn what is mindfulness and how to daily practice it; to reflect on own life choices and identity; to find peace and purpose even in the midst of chaos; to be still; to come up with helpful and enriching solutions in life; to re-connect with nature; to boost creativity and group work

I ENERGIZER

„S.T.O.P”

Duration: 15 min.

Group size: around 20 – 28  people

Materials: big room or fresh air,  Infographic1 for debriefing

The Facilitator  explains that this activity will allow participants to S.T.O.P  and invites them to start moving freely, in their own tempo in the room or outside area. After few minutes they ask them to pause and:

  • STAND and breathe. Feel connected to the ground.
  • TRUST in your body. Look down. Scan your body and note any physical sensations or emotions. Release any unpleasant sensations, notice the positive ones as you exhale and inhale.
  • OBSERVE your surroundings. Raise your eyes up and see what feels good. Be thankful for this beauty and people around you.
  • PERSPECTIVE anchoring – ask yourself what new appears for you and what is your next step.

Next, the facilitator asks the group to share with them some reflections, answering following questions:

  • How did you feel in the exercise?
  • What did you notice (in your body, mind, surrounding) while you were in it?
  • How/why S.T.O.P can be  helpful as a daily practice?

As a summary, the facilitator can share with participants information about the Minfulness from Infographic 1.

Hints for The Facilitator:

  • Make sure you have big space, either indoors or outdoor. It will be much more appreciated if you have a possibility to do it outside.
  • Don’t rush the process. Mindfulness is all about seizing the moment.
  • This activity can be done individually, also in the condition of online training/workshop.

II MAIN ACTIVITY

„Where am I?”

Duration: around 30 min.

Group size: around 30 people

Materials: Infographic 2 printed out for each participant, pens, speakers to play calming and relaxing music, spacious room or outdoors, something to seat on.

The Facilitator explains that the next exercise will be fully dedicated to individual self-reflection, saying:

„In order to know where to go, it’s worth checking where you’re starting – what you already have, what can support you, and what you lack. Very helpful might be answering  questions from the „Where am I?” form.  Answer them by examining yourself carefully…”

Next the facilitator distributes the handouts and gives participants around 20 minutes to fill it up.

They can remind people to keep the silence during the whole process and encourage them to find a comfortable seat, listen to their favorite music (on the earphones), tune inward as much as possible and be honest.

At the end of the exercise, the facilitator can ask following questions:

  • Which question turned out to be the most important? Is it from the past, the present or the future? Why?
  • Have you seen more clearly where you are and where you want to go?
  • After completing this form, do you feel the same as before, or slightly different?

To close up the facilitator tells the group to keep this questionnaire and come back to it from time to time and observe how the answers to the same questions change and how you change yourself.

Hints for The Facilitator:

  • Remember to provide a cosy, silent place for people to feel safe and comfortable.
  • Remind participants that they should work in silence and fully dedicate this time to themselves.
  • This activity can be done individually, in the condition of online training/workshop.

III EVALUATION

„Mindful pandemic”

Duration: 15 min.

Group size: Any

Materials: flip chart, markers, colorful paper, devices with Internet access

After all the activities The Facilitator asks participants how mindful acts can help surviving crisis or difficult times, which we have all experienced (and are experiencing) during recent pandemic. Small discussion is very welcome to occur. As a summary to it and all the activities, participants are asked to come up with the ideas on „How to be  more mindful in the pandemic times”. The ideas – presented as a brain storm – are written down by the facilitator on the flip chart.

At the end the facilitator asks everybody in the group to choose one person and give them a strong and sincere hug, which would last three deep, shared breaths. People don’t need to breathe at one pace, but still it  will calm them down and bring a sense of security.

Hints for The Facilitator:

IV DISSEMINATION

Activity „Terapeutic nature”

Duration: at least 30 min.

Group size: Any/Individually

Materials: none

The Facilitator encourages participants to do this walking activity – meditation whenever they have time and are outdoors, in the open air –  perfect if it’s forest or field, but it will work out even in the  small backyard or garden. The pace of walk should be very slow but rhythmic, definitely slower than a traditional one. It’s important to get into your rhythm. Breathing should be deep and as long as possible, longer than natural one. While you walk, see and notice the smallest details, feel the smell of the air, count how many birds fly in the air, pay attention to the shape of branches, clouds, count the number of flowers. If you find that your thoughts are drifting towards what happened at work, at home, what happened yesterday, or what you expect tomorrow, let those thoughts go away and return to your focus on being here and now.

Congratulation! You just became mindful 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

I accept the Privacy Policy

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.