Classes, trainings and events in Belfast, Northern Ireland

For more information or to book a place, email Bridgeen: mindfulmind@outlook.com or use the online contact form.

Click the Buy Tickets link to pay directly for the class you want or visit my Eventbrite page.  For some classes, particularly the 8-week programmes it is possible pay in other ways to avoid the booking fee. All classes in Belfast. Retreats and trainings across Northern Ireland.


June 2020

Event Day and Date Time Book
20 minute morning meditations
A morning meditation every week day - to connect and start the day right.
Mon - Fri June 2020 08.00-08.20 am
20 minute evening meditation
An daily evening meditation to calm, centre and de-stress x
Mon, Wed, Fri June 2020 08.00 - 08.20pm
Mindful Self-Compassion Retreat day
A day to go deeper into our practice of mindful self-compassion (at home).
Saturday 6 June 10am - 4pm
Summer Solstice Self-Compassion Workshop
Let's celebrate summer solstice together :)
Saturday 20 June 10-12.30pm

July 2020

Event Day and Date Time Book
July Mindful Self-Compassion Workshop
Sunday 26 July 2-4pm
Yoga Retreat in Ballycastle
A heart opening, energising yoga weekend to nourish mind and body.
Friday 31 July - Sunday 2 August 4pm on Friday- lunchtime Sunday
To book go to Marine Hotel Website https://marinehotelballycastle.com/yoga/

August 2020

Event Day and Date Time Book
August Mindful Self-Compassion
Sunday 23 August 2-4pm

September 2020

Event Day and Date Time Book
Yoga Retreat at the Marine Hotel
A heart opening, energising yoga weekend to nourish mind and body.
Friday 11 - Sunday 13 September From 3pm Friday to Lunchtime Sunday
To book go to Marine Hotel Website https://marinehotelballycastle.com/yoga/

November 2020

Event Day and Date Time Book
Deepening Your Practice Retreat
A lovely winter weekend retreat to deepen your mindfulness practice.
Saturday 21 - Sunday 22 November 9.30am - 4.30pm

May Mindful Self-Compassion Workshop

The theme this month’s theme is ‘loving kindness’.  Explore this well wishing practice.

Mindful self-compassion is the foundation of emotional healing—being aware in the present moment when we’re struggling with feelings of inadequacy, despair, confusion, and other forms of stress (mindfulness) and responding with kindness and understanding (self-compassion). Mindful self-compassion also means holding difficult emotions—fear, anger, sadness, shame and self-doubt—and ourselves, in loving awareness, leading to greater ease and well-being in our daily lives.

Mindful self-compassion can be learned by anyone. It’s the practice of repeatedly evoking good will toward ourselves especially when we’re suffering—cultivating the same desire that all living beings have to live happily and free from suffering. And as the Dalai Lama says, self-compassion is the first step toward compassion for others.

The workshop is suitable for everyone from complete beginners to experienced practitioners. It fun, practical and experiential. I’ve been running this workshop for five years and people regularly re-attend. 🙂

Sometimes it will be possible to transfer your ticket – subject to availability. Workshops in Winter months tend to sell out so transfer is limited, summer workshops usually have more availability.

It is possible to buy a ticket as a gift, the person just needs to give the name the ticket was booked under when they check in with me on the day.

Please bring your own yoga mat if you have one and a blanket to stay cosy during deep relaxation.

Thank you, I look forward to seeing you.

30 May

Dates: Saturday 30 May
Times: 10-12.30pm
Location: In your own home
Cost: £20

ZOOM Namaste 6-week mindfulness experience class

In normal times this class happens in the Namaste centre on the Ormeau Road, where I’ve been teaching it for over 10 years, now it’s online via zoom.

As well as learning about what mindfulness is and the benefits of it you will also experience:

  • how to practice mindfulness,
  • how to sit in meditation,
  • tips to practice in daily life,
  • how to do walking meditation,
  • mindful movement,
  • gratitude practice,
  • loving kindness practice,
  • mindfulness singing,
  • inspirational stories

Most importantly you’ll receive an hour of peace and tranquility in a virtual group of other local, like-minded people. You will be surprised how lovely and easy it is to connect and build a community online in this way, and for this reason numbers are limited. This will be the second weekly programme I’ve run like this. The previous one was wonderful success.

AND especially at this exceptional time for the whole world we will focus on practices to calm our nervous system and work with fear and anxiety. Also sending compassion to those struggling – including ourselves.

Suitable for all: from beginners to experienced practitioners with a beginners mind. Come join us for an experience of peace in the middle of your week.

You can buy the course as a gift for someone – just ask them to give your name on the first night.

I have lots of free material that you can access via my social media pages.

YES you can save the Eventbrite fee – you can pay via paypal and bank transfer – just email me on mindfulmind@outlook.com for details. Once payment has been received I will send you the joining instructions.

Thank you.

Here is an explanatory video from Zoom showing how to join – it is pretty intuitive and once you’ve done it once you will be grand 🙂

https://www.youtube.com/embed/vFhAEoCF7jg?rel=0&autoplay=1&cc_load_policy=1

You can use Zoom from a web browser or from the zoom app which you can find on the iPad, iPhone or Android app stores. I believe the zoom app provides best experience…

When you buy a ticket you will be sent a confirmation email with all the details you need to join the class at the appointed time. I will have an electronic record of everyone who has bought a ticket and will welcome you to the online class on arrival.

14 May

Dates: Thursday 14 May 2020
Times: 8.30-9.30pm
Location: comfort of your own home
Cost: £48

Deep relaxation class for Plum Village monastics

All of you who know me know I’m hugely influenced by Thich Nhat Hanh (Thay) and his monastic community of Brothers and Sisters collectively known ‘Plum Village‘. It’s directly due to Thay and Plum Village that I now teach these practices. I have experience much joy, happiness and wisdom as a result of my travels to Plum Village and its practice centres around the world. I have been traveling to Plum Village, France every year since 2005 – it doesn’t look like I will make it this year. I was actually due to Visit Plum Village in Germany (The EIAB) at the start of April but obviously that had to be cancelled. All Plum Village centres have been in ‘lockdown’ for two months now, unable to receive guests or operate their small bookshops. These are their main areas of income to support the community. The monastic also travel around the world bringing their teachings to people who can’t travel to them, obviously they are unable to do that at this time too.

In 2007 after my first trip to Vietnam with Thay and the international ‘sangha’ (a community of practitioners) I set up a ‘sangha’ in my house and it was basically my first meditation class. Since then I’ve travelled around the world with monastics including a trip to Hawaii! Since 2009 I’ve been organising for the monks and nuns to come to Belfast give talks and offer practices here locally. I organised big retreats led by the Sisters in Corrymeela in 2015 and 2016 and even a retreat in Cavan. I know many of you benefited from these events over the years.

Today as I write this it’s 17 April 2020 exactly 8 years since Thich Nhat Hanh came to Belfast and gave a talk in Stormont and led a walking meditation down the Stormont mile. I always feel this to be my most proudest achievement! I thought it would change the world – and slowly it has, for me at least – and certainly since then other sanghas have started and many others have traveled to Plum Village, one Mick McAvoy from Omagh now lives there working on the ‘Happy Farm’.

Plum Village is a truly amazing place and they are still every day offering free meditations and teachings via their YouTube channel and they even have a free app with lots of practices.

I thought I would offer this event so you can get a direct benefit for your donation and that I could gather the collective good will locally in appreciation and support for Plum Village. You can choose to give through this eventbrite forum or contact me to give via bank transfer or paypal. I will total all the donations and give to Plum Village from the wider Northern Ireland sangha 🙂 I hope we can raise a few £100 🙂 Everything is possible right?

If your prefer you can go directly to their page and donate to them , just let me know and I will send you the zoom link for the deep relaxation class, if you tell me the amount you donated I can add it to the total the class raises.

Read my blog on what Thay said to me.

When you donate on Eventbrite you will automatically get an email with zoom log-in details for the ‘deep relaxation’ class on Friday 1 May. If you give in another way you need to email me on mindfulmind@outlook.com to get the Zoom code. Thank you .

Deep relaxation is my favourite practice in times of stress. I offered this practice freely on Good Friday and had lots of positive feedback so I thought I’d offer it again with some readings by Thay before and after the practice.

You get lie down and are guided into full body relaxation and rest. You know I usually sing to you in this practice – did you know all those songs come from Plum Village too? 🙂

I hope lots of you will join us.

A lotus for you.

Bridgeen x

To be clear there are 3 ways to contribute and join the class

1. just book via Eventbrite – you will get the class code in an automatic email.

2. send your donation to me and I will return with the class code.

3. give directly to Plum Village via their webpage – email me to let me know how much (so I can add it to the total raised from the class) and I will email you back the code 🙂

*Please note no one has asked me to do this, i’m doing it from my own initiative with great gratitude.

1 May

Dates: Friday 1 May
Times: 7.30pm - 8.30pm
Location: Your own space
Cost: Donation based

8-week Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) course

“If your compassion doesn’t include yourself, it is incomplete.” Jack Cornfield

Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) is an empirically-supported, 8-week, training program designed to cultivate the skill of self-compassion. Based on the groundbreaking research of Kristin Neff and the clinical expertise of Christopher Germer, MSC teaches core principles and practices that enable participants to respond to difficult moments in their lives with kindness, care and understanding.

The three key components of self-compassion are self-kindness, a sense of common humanity, and balanced, mindful awareness. Kindness opens our hearts to suffering, so we can give ourselves what we need. Common humanity opens us to our essential interrelatedness, so that we know we aren’t alone. Mindfulness opens us to the present moment, so we can accept our experience with greater ease. Together they comprise a state of warm-hearted, connected presence.

Self-compassion can be learned by anyone, even those who didn’t receive enough affection in childhood or who feel uncomfortable when they are good to themselves. It’s a courageous attitude that stands up to harm, including the harm that we unwittingly inflict on ourselves through self-criticism, self-isolation, or self-absorption. Self-compassion provides 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.

Rapidly expanding research demonstrates that self-compassion is strongly associated with emotional wellbeing, less anxiety, depression and stress, maintenance of healthy habits such as diet and exercise, and satisfying personal relationships. And it’s easier than you think.

After participating in this 8-week course, you’ll be able to:

  • Practice self-compassion in daily life
  • Understand the empirically-supported benefits of self-compassion
  • Motivate yourself with kindness rather than criticism
  • Handle difficult emotions with greater ease
  • Transform challenging relationships, old and new
  • Manage caregiver fatigue
  • Practice the art of savoring and self-appreciation

What To Expect

Program activities include meditation, short talks, experiential exercises, group discussion, and home practices. MSC is 8 weekly workshops a day retreat with lunch on Sunday 2 December in Drumalis, Larne. The goal is for participants to directly experience self-compassion and learn practices that evoke self-compassion in daily life.

MSC is primarily a compassion training program rather than mindfulness training (like Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) – which I also teach and you might like to consider starting on 23 January 2019), although mindfulness is the foundation of self-compassion. MSC is also 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.

It is said that “love reveals everything unlike itself.” While some difficult emotions may arise when practicing self-compassion, I am committed to providing a safe, supportive environment for this process to unfold, and to making the journey interesting and enjoyable for everyone.

Prior to registering, participants should plan to attend every session and practice mindfulness and self-compassion at least 30 minutes per day throughout the program.

What previous participants on my MSC said:

“This is the best course I’ve ever done.” Sheila McAlornan, Yoga Teacher age 67

“I loved it and want to do it again.” Roisin Loughran, People Manger, Tesco

“I am shocked at just how powerful this course is.” Annie Campbell, retired organisational director

Prerequisites

No previous experience with mindfulness or meditation is required to attend MSC. However it is beneficial to have completed a mindfulness programme or even better to have completed and 8-week MBSR. Participants are asked to provide background information when they register for the program.

It is recommended that participants read one or both of following books before or during the program:

  • Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself, by Kristin Neff
  • The Mindful Path to Self-Compassion, by Christopher Germer

This program fulfils one of the prerequisites for becoming a mindfulness teacher. For more information on MSC and MSC Teacher Training, please visit www.CenterForMSC.org.

Registration

Please don’t just buy a ticket without filling out an application form. To ensure your place on the MSC programme please contact Bridgeen on mindfulmind@outlook.com for an application form.

Please Note: you can also pay for this course by bank transfer, PayPal cheque or cash and save the Eventbrite fee.

As always payment is non-refundable and non-transferable.

21 April

Dates: Tuesday 21 April 2020
Times: 6.30pm-9.30pm
Location: Lagan Weir
Cost: £290

April Mindful Self-Compassion Workshop

The theme this month is cultivating freedom in the mind and heart.

Mindful self-compassion is the foundation of emotional healing—being aware in the present moment when we’re struggling with feelings of inadequacy, despair, confusion, and other forms of stress (mindfulness) and responding with kindness and understanding (self-compassion). Mindful self-compassion also means holding difficult emotions—fear, anger, sadness, shame and self-doubt—and ourselves, in loving awareness, leading to greater ease and well-being in our daily lives.

Mindful self-compassion can be learned by anyone. It’s the practice of repeatedly evoking good will toward ourselves especially when we’re suffering—cultivating the same desire that all living beings have to live happily and free from suffering. And as the Dalai Lama says, self-compassion is the first step toward compassion for others.

The workshop is suitable for everyone from complete beginners to experienced practitioners. It fun, practical and experiential. I’ve been running this workshop for five years and people regularly re-attend. 🙂

Sometimes it will be possible to transfer your ticket – subject to availability. Workshops in Winter months tend to sell out so transfer is limited, summer workshops usually have more availability.

It is possible to buy a ticket as a gift, the person just needs to give the name the ticket was booked under when they check in with me on the day.

Please bring your own yoga mat if you have one and a blanket to stay cosy during deep relaxation.

Thank you, I look forward to seeing you.

19 April

Dates: Sunday 19 April 2020
Times: 2-4pm
Location: Namaste Yoga Centre, Belfast
Cost: £20