What is Mindful Self-Compassion?
Thanks to MSC Teacher, Alayna Fender, for the spirited discussion about Mindful Self-Compassion and how it helps us.
Mindful Self-Compassion (MSCTM) is an empirically supported skill-building program designed to teach self-compassion to anyone. These skills provide emotional strength and resilience, allowing us to admit our shortcomings, motivate ourselves with kindness, forgive ourselves when needed, relate wholeheartedly to others, and be more authentically ourselves. MSC was created by Dr. Chris Germer and Dr. Kristin Neff in 2010 and is now taught in 22 countries and 11 languages around the globe.
Compared to psychotherapy, which usually occurs weekly for 1 hour, MSC participants are training their minds and brains for 3-4 hours per week. Some therapists find self-compassion training to be a helpful adjunct to psychotherapy because it builds emotional resilience. Others consider it portable therapy insofar as it mimics the therapeutic relationship, providing comfort, care, and soothing between sessions.
What MSC is not:
MSC is not psychotherapy insofar as the emphasis of MSC is on building emotional resources rather than addressing old wounds. Positive change occurs naturally as we develop the capacity to be with ourselves in a kinder, more compassionate way. Secondly, MSC is primarily a compassion training program rather than mindfulness training like Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), although mindfulness is the foundation of self-compassion.
This course is for people who know that beating themselves up (through self-criticism, isolation, relentless striving, addictive behaviors, etc.) is no longer serving their best interests. The MSC course teaches a set of skills which serve as a starting point for alleviating suffering, even for those who may not know where to begin. No meditation experience is required. We will begin where you are.
This program fulfills one of the prerequisites for becoming a MSC teacher. For more information on MSC and MSC Teacher Training, please visit www.CenterForMSC.org.