‘Being kinder to myself’ : using compassion focused therapy and compassionate mind training to help individuals in the helping professions cultivate compassion

Beaumont, EA ORCID: 0000-0002-8259-5858 2017, ‘Being kinder to myself’ : using compassion focused therapy and compassionate mind training to help individuals in the helping professions cultivate compassion , PhD on publication thesis, University of Salford.

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Abstract

Self-critical judgement, low levels of self-compassion, symptoms of stress, compassion fatigue, trauma and burnout can all have a negative impact on individuals who work in the helping professions. Continued absence of strategies that promote self-care, puts individuals in the helping professions at risk of experiencing such symptoms, which can impact on performance and compassion levels. This highlights the importance of developing, creating and testing interventions that promote self-care.

This portfolio of ten published works and eight supporting publications offers a unique contribution to knowledge by adapting and using Compassion Focused Therapy and Compassionate Mind Training, with populations who work in the helping professions (e.g. Fire Service personnel, student midwives, student nurses, student counsellors, student cognitive behavioural psychotherapists and healthcare educators). This population may experience trauma-related symptoms as a result of bearing witness to suffering. Teaching programmes were devised and tested and results from empirical studies in this portfolio of works suggest that CFT/CMT increased levels of self-compassion and reduced self-critical judgement. Interventions aimed at cultivating compassion for one’s own suffering were incorporated into psychotherapy to help individuals who experience primary trauma and into Higher Education programmes, to help students who may experience low levels of self-compassion, high levels of self-critical judgement and/or trauma-related symptoms. Collectively the publications provide a body of knowledge, which suggest that incorporating CFT/CMT into psychotherapy and healthcare practitioner training may help individuals ‘be kinder to self’ in times of suffering. Helping individuals in the helping professions respond to their own suffering with compassion may build resilience and equip them with the tools needed to face the demands of practice and training. Whilst suffering cannot be prevented, interventions which focus on the cultivation of compassion, can be employed to encourage healing. This Portfolio of Published Works offers a unique contribution to knowledge, bridging a gap between practice and theory by offering tested, practical ways of enhancing compassion in populations that may suffer, as a result of bearing witness to trauma.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD on publication)
Schools: Schools > School of Health and Society
Depositing User: Dr Elaine Beaumont
Date Deposited: 17 Jan 2018 09:02
Last Modified: 17 Jan 2018 09:02
URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/42562

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