What is Mindfulness-based Supervision?
Mindfulness-based supervision is founded on mutual respect and care. It establishes a safe place for you, as a Mindfulness teacher or teacher-in-training, to explore your teaching strengths as well as your challenges. Mindfulness-based supervision focuses not only on your teaching work, but also includes consideration of your personal mindfulness practice and how it impacts on your work and everyday life.
Who is Mindfulness Supervision suitable for?
Mindfulness supervision can be undertaken by anyone who is teaching mindfulness in any format, whether teaching MBSR, MBCT, Introductory programmes or other Mindfulness based interventions. You may be newly qualified in teaching Mindfulness and would like to avail of support and mentoring as you deepen your understanding of the course curriculum and the dynamics of your group. Perhaps you are already an experienced Mindfulness teacher but would welcome a chance to explore working with a new supervisor.
Mindfulness based Supervision can also support those who are not currently teaching but would welcome support with exploring and deepening their personal practice.
What is included in a Mindfulness Supervision session?
The supervision session is led by you. You may come to a session with a particular issue that is alive for you in your work or your practice, something you are wondering about, perhaps, and are curious to understand more about. Through a process of inquiry, we can continue to wonder and explore these issues together. The sessions are very much a collaborative process.
The supervision session itself creates a container that includes elements of mindfulness practice and supports embodied presence and compassion.
You may want to immerse yourself more fully in the MBSR course curriculum; perhaps you’d like to explore a particular aspect of the curriculum or develop further your guidance of a particular practice. You may be starting your teaching career and offering introductory courses and workshops. You may be wondering how to adapt your teaching to the needs of a specific population or how best to support participants with particular needs. All of this, and more, is possible to include for consideration in mindfulness-based supervision.
The Mindfulness Teachers Association of Ireland (MTAI) offers this definition of Supervision:
“Mindfulness supervision is a regular, safe and co-created restorative space that is held within the container of mindfulness and contracted between supervisor and supervisee. Embodying a compassionate presence and through mutual inquiry, the supervisory process enables reflection on the supervisee’s mindfulness teaching practice and balances the supportive, educative and ethical strands of mindfulness teaching and practice. The process is dedicated to deepening the growth, understanding, integrity, safety and effectiveness of the integration of mindfulness, both personally and professionally, in the supervisee’s working life.”
Why choose me?
I bring to the supervision space 35 years of personal mindfulness meditation practice and have participated in many silent retreats over these years. My practice has generally followed Vipassana or Insight meditation as taught in the tradition of Theravada Buddhism.
Over the past 5 years, I have been involved in MBSR Teacher Training. I currently tutor on the Masters in Mindfulness Based Wellbeing (MSc) in University College Cork (UCC). I previously assisted on MBSR Teacher Training programmes with the Center for Mindfulness, Massachusetts and the University of California, San Diego (UCSD). The experience of training new Mindfulness teachers has fostered in me a deep respect for the curriculum of MBSR and the potential for mindfulness teachers to support many people to introduce more ease in their lives. I am passionate about supporting Mindfulness teachers to immerse themselves in this curriculum and to witness the powerful effects of the unfolding of MBSR and other mindfulness interventions with their groups.
In 2019, I trained in Supervision for Mindfulness Teachers with Centre for Mindfulness Research and Practice (CMRP), Bangor University, Wales. Since then, I have continued to develop and deepen my experience by engaging in CPD training events for Mindfulness Supervisors. I am currently engaged in a 12 month in-depth training for Mindfulness Supervisors with Lot Heijke and colleagues, the Netherlands.
During 2020 and 2021, I trained in the use of MBI:TAC, Levels 1 and 2 with Bangor University, Wales and the Midnfulness Network, UK. I am also familiar with using the MBI-TAC Teaching and Learning Companion (TLC) as a self-reflective tool, a tool that supports you as a mindfulness teacher to continue to develop your mindfulness work with the greatest integrity and standard of ethics.
Please contact me if you require any updated assessment of or feedback on your teaching and I would be happy to support you.
I am currently an active member of the Supervisor Sub-group of the Mindfulness Teachers Association Ireland (MTAI) and with my colleagues have developed Guidelines for Mindfulness Supervision 2021, a document that works towards upholding the integrity of mindfulness teaching in Ireland.
As well as my work with the general public, over the past decade, I have introduced mindfulness to many organisations throughout County Kerry, involving staff from educational and training settings, healthcare, mental services, senior groups, corporate companies and more. This has necessitated adapting my mindfulness teaching to the needs of a wide and varied audience. From all of these varied experiences, I have developed a strong interest in and commitment to making mindfulness accessible to as many people from as many walks of life as possible, particularly groups who may be marginalised in any way.
I, myself, have committed to engaging in regular supervision since I first began teaching and am blessed to have Dr. Bob Stahl, Santa Cruz, USA as my mentor. I have seen that supervision is a rich learning ground, a space where the teacher can safely continue to refine their teaching skills and also explore their edges and vulnerabilities.
Since mid – 2020, when my work moved entirely online, I have been fortunate to work with people from different parts of Ireland and also a range of different countries around the world. I am excited about this new international flavour to my work and for the opportunities it creates for me to develop mindfulness courses that support inclusion and diversity.
I look forward to meeting you and supporting you to develop your own teaching and personal practice!
Please feel free to contact me and I’d be happy to chat to you about your particular support needs.