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What do you do to keep your mind healthy? People do lots to improve their physical health - eat more fruit, drink less alcohol, exercise. But what, if anything, do you do for your mental health? Tonight's talks explore whether mindfulness meditation can bring you inner peace. Plus whether the way we try to cope with stress and unhappiness could be causing problems.
What is mindfulness, and what are its benefits?
Michael Atkinson (School of Medical Education, Newcastle University)
Michael's talk will introduce you to the science and practice of mindfulness meditation. This technique, a method of calming the mind and focussing on the present has become hugely popular in recent times to reduce stress and improve well-being. Michael will give an introduction to some of the key research related to mindfulness and take the audience through some guided practices. There will be lots of opportunity for discussion and questions.
Emotion regulation and mania
Our emotions change throughout the day. We can maintain, control and enhance our emotions, sometimes without being aware of it– this is emotion regulation. It influences our performance at work, sport & exercise, and relationships. How we think about, and respond to our emotions can also influence our mental health, particularly in bipolar disorder. People with bipolar disorder experience mania, euphoria, irritability and high energy - as well as depression. Alyson will talk about how difficulties with emotion regulation can make people more vulnerable to these highs and lows in mood.