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Title: Mindfulness based cognitive therapy : a two-part investigation of the benefits and challenges for mental health professionals
Author: de Zoysa, Nicole
ISNI:       0000 0001 3420 9142
Awarding Body: University of East London
Current Institution: University of East London
Date of Award: 2006
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There has been a growing interest in incorporating mindfulness into clinical interventions in medicine and psychology (Baer, 2003). One such approach is Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (Segal et aL, 2002). The mindfulness component of this treatment approach has its roots in Eastern meditative practices, which has implicationsf or practitioners as well as clients. The focus of this research is the relationship between MBCT and mental health professionals' personal and professional development. This was explored in two related studies. Study 1 used a repeated measures design to assess changes in mindfulness and psychological well-being in mental health professionals 18 months after attending an MBCT programme. Results showed that some of the improvements found at 3-month follow-up (by Ruths et al., 2005) had persisted at 18-month follow-up. The relationship between these improvements and other variables such as meditation practice and life events was less straightforward. Study 2 was a qualitative study which used Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis to explore the personal and professional experiences of Clinical Psychologists after attending the MBCT programme cited above. Participants reported continued use of meditation techniques in an informal or ad hoc way and this was associated with improved psychological functioning. In terms of professional development, participants introduced mindfulness into their clinical work in a tentative way and spoke about the challenges and benefits of this integration. Separating mindfulness from its spiritual roots was not viewed as problematic, within the context of a credible evidence base. In conclusion, MBCT appears to benefit mental health professionals as well as clients. The relationship between the development of mindfulness and the need for formal practice is questioned by the research. The accounts of Clinical Psychologists provide useful insights into how a spiritual 'technology' is being integrated into the NHS. The implications for future research and clinical practice are discussed.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available