Posts filed under mindfulness

Bringing Breathe Blogs Together

hypnotherapy rainbow

As Breathe Holistic Therapy has developed over the last 9 years I have introduced a number of specialised blogs with their own aim and focus including this hypnotherapy research blog.  This blog aims at reporting on  a wide spectrum of  hypnotherapy research.

Each of the blogs I've developed include information and interesting posts exploring subjects all relating to one thing: the work of Breathe Holistic Therapy and needs of the clients.  I have decided to consolidate all the blogs into one. I aim to make the posts more accessible and easier to find. All future posts sharing interesting pieces of hypnotherapy research will now be posted on the Breathe Therapy Blog.

All the previous posts will still remain published here and can be read or shared again, remaining available to you into the future.  I hope you find the single blog more accessible and continue to enjoy reading.

Posted on July 8, 2016 and filed under hypnotherapy, mindfulness.

Meditation and chronic back pain

Chronic back pain is a common problem often making everyday tasks and attending work difficult.  

Mindfulness meditation is a self care technique that enables you to experience the moment rather than being consumed by thoughts of the past or worries about the future. The awareness and acceptance that develops promotes a calmer more resilient outlook.  Mindfulness meditation can be included in your daily routines.

back pain

A recent study suggests that mindfulness meditation eases chronic back pain. The study involved 342 patients aged between 20 and 70 with chronic back pain. The subjects were divided into three groups receiving  either mindfulness meditation, cognitive behavioural therapy or usual care for back pain such as analgesia. The results led the Group Health Research Institute to conclude that mindfulness gave meaningful improvement in patients' pain. 

After six months 61 percent of the subjects who received mindfulness meditation showed a reduction in the limitations caused by their back pain.   The researches who led the study believe that the mind and body are intertwined in the way they sense and respond to pain. The study was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.  The research suggests that training the brain to respond differently to pain is more effective that pain relief medication.

Study leader Dr Daniel Cherkin stated:

‘We are excited about these results, because chronic low back pain is such a common problem and can be disabling and difficult to treat.’
Greater understanding and acceptance of the mind-body connection will provide patients and clinicians with new opportunities for improving the lives of persons with chronic back pain and other challenging conditions that are not always effectively managed with physical treatments alone.’

There were also improvements in self-reported 'pain bothersomeness' with a 44 per cent improvement among the mindfulness meditation group and 45 per cent in the Cognitive Behavioural Therapy group compared to 27 per cent in the group who continued with their usual care. The improvements found in the mindfulness group persisted when the group was followed up a year later, researchers found.

For more information on mindfulness please do contact me

Please visit here to experience  mindfulness meditation

Posted on April 13, 2016 and filed under mindfulness.

Mindfulness at Stourbridge Hospice


I have been privileged to work as a volunteer therapist and Mindfulness teacher at Mary Stevens Hospice Stourbridge.  There is a growing amount of evidence about the benefits of mindfulness for both patients and those working in the palliative care environment.

Christopher Johns in Being Mindful, Easing Suffering: Reflections on Palliative Care explains how “Mindfulness is a quality of mind that notices what is present without judgment, without interference. Being mindful guides me to see things as they really are rather than as a reflection of myself. Mindful practice is being aware of ones experience as it unfolds in its unpredictable and unique way.

Trish Bartley in Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for Cancer: Gently Turning Towards  explores a Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy for Cancer. An eight-week course which has been tried and tested over ten years of clinical use, and is targeted specifically for people with cancer.

“Mindfulness is a way of being more present and aware. This offers us many opportunities to appreciate life more. It also enables us to respond more gently to what we find difficult, and by doing this we often find that the experience changes

A study in 2008 ( Chadwik et al ) found that Mindfulness was beneficial to people with terminal cancer both physically and emotionally.  An analysis research available in 2005 concluded that mindfulness based intervention in cancer care had positive results, including improvements in mood, sleep quality and reductions in stress. A further review of studies in 2011 supported this finding. They found significant improvements in anxiety, depression, stress, sexual difficulties and immune function

In 2005 the the use of Mindfulness in hospice care was explored from the perspective of the nurses. The quotes included evidence how for some staff the changes were very significant.

“mindfulness makes me alert to what is happening……I see things that I didn’t see before, I begin to notice. For example when there is a lot of chaos in the room… thiswhat she is seeing all day?”

“I think that in itself to be mindful that someone is afraid and not to reject it, not to sugar it over with something but also not be freaked out. But to really be with that feeling and to embrace it….then it seems the person can usually relax”

Mindful presence is the nurse being totally dedicated to the circumstances she finds in the here and now, regardless of what has gone before or what will follow. It is a valuing of “being” over “doing” in the belief that compassionately being present enables the nurse to respond with empathy to the needs in that moment.

Mindfulness is not a replacement for medical care but it can be included within the home, hospice or hospital setting. 

For more information please do contact me on 07531 121199 or email


Posted on September 21, 2015 and filed under mindfulness.

Mindfulness Research


Mindfulness has been researched extensively and there are many quality studies available showing it's variety of benefits. 

Evidence shows that Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy can, on average, reduce the risk of relapse for people who experience recurrent depression by 43%. Research also suggests that it’s particularly effective for vulnerable groups who are more likely to relapse (J Williams et al, “Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for Preventing Relapse in Recurrent Depression: A Randomized Dismantling Trial”, 2013.).  The evidence is so robust that the National Institute for Clinical and Health Excellence (NICE) recommends it for all people who have had two or more depressive episodes.

Research into individuals with “problematic” levels of stress found significant improvement in perceived levels of stress over the course of a mindfulness stress reduction program. The findings of this research were consistent with other studies. (RA Baer et al, “Weekly change in mindfulness and perceived stress in a mindfulness-based stress reduction program”, 2012).

 A limited amount of research into mindfulness during pregnancy has shown encouraging results on the positive impact of mindfulness, finding ‘significantly’ reduced anxiety (C Vieten, “Effects of a mindfulness-based intervention during pregnancy on prenatal stress and mood: results of a pilot study”, 2007).

There is evidence that mindfulness can help individuals with insomnia. A subject in the study described changes thus; “Maria discovered ....... the principles and practices of mindfulness meditation allow for sleep to unfold rather than increasing efforts to clear the mind or try harder to make sleep happen.”  (J Ong et al  “ A mindfulness –based approach to the treatment of insomnia” , 2010).

Mindfulness has been researched as an intervention for pain management. A randomised control study concluded “Mind-body therapies such as the MBSR program are a promising non-pharmacologic adjunct to current pain treatment for older adults. However, larger more rigorous trials must be undertaken to convincingly demonstrate their effectiveness.”  (N. Morone et al “Mindfulness meditation for the treatment of chronic low back pain in older adults: A randomized controlled pilot study”, 2008).

My experiences of mindfulness are of course anecdotal but you can read a little about my use of mindfulness in our therapy blog.

Posted on June 8, 2015 and filed under hypnotherapy, mindfulness.