Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR)

This 8-week class on learning and practicing mindfulness is the curriculum developed by Jon Kabat-Zinn at the U. Mass. Center for Mindfulness in the 1970’s. It is the “grandparent” of most of the secular mindfulness courses now available, including Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy of depression (MBCT), Mindful Self-Compassion, and many others. It is the oldest and most researched mindfulness-based intervention. Most of the research on mindfulness is based on studies of MBSR participants. It is associated with reductions in stress, anxiety, chronic pain, and depression, and improvements in health and feelings of well-being. In addition, neurophysiological research has found changes in brain structures and function, indicating improved attention and cognitive ability and reduced emotional reactivity.

MBSR is an 8-week class that meets for 2 1/2 hours per week and includes a 4-6 hr. silent retreat. Basic concepts of mindfulness and a wide variety of mindfulness practices are taught, including mindfulness meditation and more informal everyday mindfulness practices, that can be practiced anywhere and anytime. The course includes audio recordings of guided meditations and handouts.

Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Intensive

Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Intensive, a 5-Day Program, is based on the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Program (MBSR) developed by Jon Kabat-Zinn and is offered for those who may not be able to participate in the traditional 8-week course. Same great content in an intensive format.  The program consists of 4 days of two sessions each plus an all-day retreat.  Participants learn healthier ways to cope with stress and live with greater ease, joy, and balance in everyday life.  Guided meditations, instruction, and a journal are provided.

Mindful Self-Compassion

The 8-week Mindful Self-Compassion course is designed to help us look more deeply at self-compassion and develop skills to work with difficult emotions. The inner critic’s voice can often rob us of our self-confidence and inner peace. Participants learn to respond to difficult moments with kindness, understanding, and self-care. This powerful tool helps us develop emotional resilience and enhances emotional well being.

Based on the ground-breaking work of Kristen Neff and Christopher Germer, benefits include lower levels of anxiety and depression, more satisfying personal relationships, and greater happiness.


Short Course in Mindful Self-Compassion

In this new and abridged course, The Short Course in Mindful Self-Compassion (SC-MSC), you will learn the skills we all need to meet life’s challenges with more wisdom and kindness.  The Short Course includes MSC’s key informal practices, as well as ways to experience more self-compassion in daily life.

SC-MSC was developed by MSC’s pioneering researchers and clinicians, Kristin Neff and Christopher Germer for those who were short on time and could not engage in the longer 2 ½ hour weekly class.


Mindfulness-Based Forgiveness for Older Adults 

An 8-week group psychotherapy session for those aged 60 and over which is focused on using mindfulness to work on forgiveness of self and others.  We learn to cultivate mindfulness, self-compassion, and insight about forgiveness in a very supportive environment.  Studies have shown that forgiveness can enhance our health and well-being.  The sessions are covered by Medicare and most insurance.

Basic Mindfulness Skills for Difficult Times

A 4-week course that teaches basic mindfulness concepts and core skills, with lots of opportunities to practice and for Q-and-A about one’s experience. We will emphasize cultivating mindfulness through meditation and more informally, utilizing our senses to bring our attention back to the vastness of this present moment.

Mindfulness-Based Dementia Care for Families and Caregivers

Are you a caregiver of someone with dementia? Mindfulness-based dementia care (MBDC) is an 8-week program to help you meet your own needs and lower your stress while caring for your loved one. Meeting once a week for 2 hours, care partners learn to incorporate mindfulness practice into their every-day lives. Through a combination of mindfulness instruction, discussion, sharing, inquiry, and hands-on activities, care partners learn to adopt an integrative view of dementia, fostering stress hardiness and well-being for themselves and the person in their care.

The course includes a workbook and audio recordings of guided practices and meditations. To learn more, please visit www.presencecareproject.com and  www.alzheimers.med.umich.edu/wellness-initiative/.

Topic Specific Mindfulness Programs

Mindfulness for Parents

Take a weekly breather from the busyness of family life. Make room for the arising of fresh insight into what is (and isn't) essential. Learn how to offer yourself and your loved ones the most precious gift of all: your true, full presence.

Each student will get personalized support for developing a daily meditation practice that’s appropriate for them (or fine-tuning it, if they have one already); cultivating mindfulness skills through everyday activities; and deepening connection with family members. Every class will include instruction, a guided practice exercise, student check-in, and Q/A.

Some prior experience with mindfulness is helpful, but not required. Ages 17 and up.

The Mind of Love

Feeling trapped in the deep freeze, inside as well as outside? Does your heart sometimes seem to be two sizes too small? You can find the way back to the warmth inherent in every human heart. This course will help you cultivate genuine love and kindness for yourself and others.

Students will get support for establishing a daily meditation practice that’s appropriate for them (or taking it to the next level, if they have one already); building mindfulness skills through everyday activities, and loosening the grip of habitual patterns that block the natural capacity for love.

Every class will include instruction, a guided practice exercise, student check-in, and Q/A.

Some prior experience with mindfulness is helpful, but not required. Ages 17 and up.

Mindfulness in Uncertain Times

Tumultuous headlines, health, and financial insecurity, isolation, family tensions… all can leave us feeling agitated, nervous, just not ourselves. Join us for support in developing a daily meditation practice that’s appropriate for you (or fine-tuning it, if you have one already); cultivating basic mindfulness skills; and applying those skills to respond wisely to life's challenges. Classes will include a guided practice exercise and Q-and-A. For ages 17+.


Class Schedule
See dates and times, and register for your class of choice.
Open sessions in Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti, and Saline. No registration required.
Meet the Teachers
Find out about our diverse group of mindfulness instructors.