17. January to 21. March 2023

L914, H308, E405

The registration deadline for the event has unfortunately expired.

Mindfulness for Academics – a Practical Workshop for Self-enhancing Resilience and Happiness

Course Type: Workshop
Target Group: Doctoral researchers, postdoctoral researchers
   In cooperation with Techniker Krankenkasse and Gesunde Uni.
Mindfulness refers to a quality of attention, in which you focus on being present in the moment in a non-judgmental state. It is one of the leading evidence-based practices for enhancing mental resilience and improving performances under distress.
This course is designed to improve participants’ well-being by offering coping strategies specifically for academic life. It is a practical, experiential, and participatory class in which participants learn useful self-help skills.
The rationale of the course is to go through the process of first understanding what mindfulness is and how to practice our attention and awareness. Then participants learn about self-compassion and cultivating the non-judgmental attitude. Finally, the emphasis will be on how to create change by breaking the automatic conditions and biases that produce mental suffering and by replacing mind traps with beneficial mental attitudes.
Participants are expected to practice at home (5-30 minutes per day) and share their experiences in the sessions.
Phase I: Practicing attention and awareness
Session #1: Introduction to the workshop and the mindfulness concepts
The background, science, applications and outcomes of mindfulness.
Practice: mindful eating, mindful breathing.
Session #2: Attention and the brain
Monotasking and how to better focus; neuroscience and the nature of attention, executive functions, and regulation.
Practice: exercises for extending focused attention; mindful movement and yoga.
Session #3: Coping with negative thoughts, self-doubts and imposter syndrome
How to recognize cognitive biases and how to cope with ruminating thoughts.
Practice: awareness to thoughts & cognitive diffusion.
Phase II: Stress management and acceptance attitude
Session #4: Embrace your stress
Stress, anxiety, insomnia, stage fright – how to better cope and relax.
Practice: body scan; relaxation techniques.
Session #5: Acceptance and self-compassion
The components of radical self-compassion; the western world’s conflicts, shame and guilt; strategies to better accept ourselves.
Practice: loving-kindness; self-compassion break.
Session #6: Interpersonal mindfulness
Resolving conflicts; harmonious communication and principles of nonviolent-communication (M. Rosenberg); conflict managing styles; mindful listening and phrasing harmonious communication.
Practice: mindful listening and mindful speaking; conflict journal.
Phase III: Towards change
Breaking the automatic conditions and biases that produce mental suffering. Replacing the mind traps with beneficial mental attitudes.
Session #7: Time management and how to get things done (even from home)
Procrastinating, mindful scheduling and paying attention to what drains me and what energizes me.
Practice: life-goal settings; mindful scheduling.
Session #8 : Personality, motivation and habits
Tools from social-psychology and life-coaching are applied to enable us to change and maintain desired habits.
Practice: walking meditation; motivation-tendency self-questionnaire.
Session #9: Commitments 
How to act in a way that reflects our values, taking actions to cultivate what we learnt so far and developing the practice of your own.
Practice: reflecting conversation.
Counting towards the Certificate "Leadership, Management, Science Communication and Knowledge Transfer" (Module IV, 18 AE).