CEMR has now moved its lunchtime mindfulness sessions for staff and students online, to take place three times per week.
Since Autumn, 2019, City University of London's Centre for Excellence in Mindfulness Research (CEMR) has been delivering weekly mindfulness drop-in sessions for anyone interested in taking half an hour out of their day for their well-being. The sessions have become a space for community, friendly smiles, and self-care.
The drop-in sessions are now hosted online, being delivered three times per week, taking place from 12:30 – 1pm every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The aim is to help maintain City's culture of care through the connections made and strengthened in the sessions.
The Centre’s co-founders and directors, Dr Trudi Edginton and Dr Jutta Tobias Mortlock began organising the face-to-face drop-in sessions to help foster community at City, built around mindfulness-based values.
They take turns in facilitating the sessions, helped by Dr Lucie Zernerova, a mindfulness and resilience researcher and mindfulness teacher who has recently completed her doctorate at City.
A face to face mindfulness drop-in session facilitated by Dr Trudi Edginton (third from right).
Clara McInerney, a postgraduate student who regularly attends the sessions, comments:
"Each week is different, both in terms of our own experience and the guided practice we follow, but what is consistent is a mid-week moment of mindfulness and a connection with fellow mindfulness fans."
Dr José María Muñoz y Ramón, Visiting Fellow at City’s Centre for Healthcare Innovation Research (CHIR), shares:
“In the middle of a busy, and sometimes chaotic week, the mindfulness drop-in session is my personal space for meditation and recovery. Sharing the experience with like minded colleagues makes it even more meaningful.”
No prior experience curriculum
The team have created a curriculum of mindfulness exercises that do not require any prior mindfulness or meditation experience. The sessions are also deliberately delivered in a light-hearted, interactive manner.
Jo Roberts who is pursuing postgraduate studies at City, says:
“I have found the drop-in sessions an excellent opportunity for me to practice a range of mindfulness techniques with a highly skilled teacher, on an informal and flexible basis. The group structure helps reinforce my motivation and commitment to practice, and sharing experiences and thoughts with others is both insightful and supportive.”
Newcomers are always welcome. In the words of a staff member who shared her impression after attending a session for the first time:
"I had no idea what to expect when i walked in the room. If anything, i was expecting a massive space with everyone sitting on the floor in a big circle or a similar setup to a yoga class. Instead, it was cosy, friendly and intimate and I was completely taken aback by the power and magic of the ringing of the bells. You'll have to drop in and attend a session to find out what that means...".
Join a session
Facilitated mindfulness sessions take place from 12:30 – 1pm every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday (except Bank Holidays).
Anyone is welcome to join. The sessions are delivered through Zoom. Please contact Dr Jutta Tobias Mortlock for details on how to join the session.
For more details about the Centre for Excellence in Mindfulness Research, please visit CEMR website.