About MSC Core Skills Workshop
This workshop is an opportunity to immerse yourself in some of the key practices and exercises of the full 8-week MSC program in an intensive online format. The course is intended for mental health and medical professionals as well as the general population.
MSC teaches the skill of self-compassion to enhance our capacity for emotional wellbeing. Mindfulness is the first step—turning toward difficult experience (emotions, sensations, thoughts). Self-kindness comes next—bringing care and concern to ourselves. Finally we honor our shared humanity in the experience of imperfection. Taken together, the elements of self-compassion comprise a state of warm, connected presence during difficult moments in our lives.
Burgeoning research shows that self-compassion is strongly associated with emotional wellbeing, coping with life challenges, lower levels of anxiety and depression, healthy habits such as diet and exercise, and more satisfying, compassionate relationships. Self-compassion includes the capacity to comfort, soothe and validate ourselves, but also to protect and provide for ourselves, and to motivate ourselves to achieve our goals. Fortunately, anyone can learn self-compassion.
These events are intended to raise awareness of Mindful Self-Compassion and, in many cases, the Center for Mindful Self-Compassion.
This event is a benefit for the non-profit Center for Mindful Self-Compassion, which means that the teachers are donating all teaching fees to fund the operations of the organization.
What you will learn
Practice self-compassion in daily life
Understand the evidence-based benefits of self-compassion
Motivate yourself with kindness rather than criticism
Handle difficult emotions with greater ease
Manage caregiver fatigue
Increase your happiness with savoring and self-appreciation
Teach simple self-compassion practices to others
Please Note: This workshop contains the highlights of the MSC training but is not the entire course and therefore does not fulfill the pre-requisite for attending teacher training or participating in other CMSC programs for MSC graduates.
What to expect
This workshop is completely live and online.
Program activities include short talks, meditation, experiential exercises, group discussion, and home practices. The goal is for participants to directly experience self-compassion and learn practices that evoke self-compassion in daily life.
No previous experience with mindfulness or meditation is required to attend this workshop.
Numerous 4-person breakout groups provide an opportunity for participants to connect and share their direct experience of the practices with others.
MSC is a resource-building program rather than a retreat.
In that regard, difficult emotions are likely to emerge as we give ourselves the kindness that we need. Participants are asked to attend to their own safety and wellbeing, and there will be trained MSC teachers ready to support participants as we proceed together through the course. We are committed to making the journey safe, interesting and enjoyable for everyone.
**Please be aware that this workshop will be video-recorded by CMSC and made available (and not downloadable) only to participants in the workshop for a period of four weeks after the conclusion of the program. You will be asked to acknowledge and accept this on the registration form.
Self-compassion: what is it?
Self-compassion is the emotional attitude of bringing kindness to ourselves when things go wrong in our lives. Most of us easily treat our friends and loved ones with warmth, tenderness and patience when they struggle, fall short or fail at times in their lives, but we have a much harder time bringing those same qualities of compassion to our own selves in the same situations. Self-compassion is directed to the one who is suffering, and encourages us to consider the fundamental question of “What do I need?” By recognizing that difficulty is here (mindfulness), that these things are a part of every human life (common humanity), and connecting with our natural capacity for kindness toward suffering (self-kindness), we can develop healthy and enduring patterns of relating to all the circumstances of life.
Self-compassion: how to learn it
Self-compassion can be learned by anyone, even those who didn’t receive enough affection in childhood or who find it embarrassing to be kind to oneself. It’s a courageous mental attitude that stands up to harm, including the discomfort that we unwittingly inflict on ourselves through self-criticism, self-isolation, and self-rumination when things go wrong. Self-compassion provides emotional strength and resilience, allowing us to admit our shortcomings, forgive ourselves, and respond to ourselves and others with care and respect, and be fully human.
Identify the three key components of self-compassion
Describe key research that supports the benefits of self-compassion
Apply techniques to increase self-compassion in everyday life
Use self-compassion to alleviate caregiver burnout
Implement self-compassion practice to motivate behavior change
Develop and apply self-compassion practices to respond to feelings of failure or inadequacy with self-kindness
Assess and manage difficult situations and emotions with greater moment-to-moment acceptance
Included in this Program:
Self-Compassion Mentoring Sessions
Engage with highly trained and experienced Self-Compassion Mentors for on-the-spot learning and application of Self-Compassion skills and teachings.
Each Self-Compassion Mentor is a highly trained MSC teacher, who has achieved the highest level of training in Mindful Self-Compassion.
Empower yourself and optimize learning by attending additional interactive practice sessions.
What you can expect:
Clarify what you are learning
Apply skills immediately in real time
Answers to your questions
Deepen your understanding of Self-Compassion
Review, personalize and apply practices
Optimize learning in community through Common Humanity
A premium aspect of this Core Skills training is the unique opportunity to engage in virtual practice group sessions while going through the Core Skills program. Most trainings do not include this kind of opportunity. These extra practice sessions are designed to help you maximize learning and get a jump start on integrating Mindful Self-Compassion into your life.
In order to support diversity, equity and belonging we are launching two virtual affinity groups to support the learning of certain diverse participants within the Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) Core Skills Training Program. These adjunctive training sessions will give some attendees the opportunity to participate in relevant affinity groups of their choice. Affinity groups are developed for those who self-identify with a particular underrepresented, social-cultural identity such as racial identity, sexual orientation, non-binary gender identity. These MSC group sessions will provide a safe space for exploring shared identity-based experiences in relationship to learning and practicing Mindful-Self-Compassion. The two MSC Core Skills affinity groups scheduled are as follows:
People of Color (underrepresented racial identities)
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Genderqueer, Intersex, Asexual, Pansexual+ (LGBTQIAP+) (sexual orientation, gender identity, nonbinary/gender expansion & expression)
Continuing Education Credits
Continuing Education credits will be offered for some professions for the MSC Online Core Skills Training Workshop. Please see below for more information.
Continuing Education Credit for this program is provided by UC San Diego Center for Mindfulness. The UC San Diego Center for Mindfulness is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The UC San Diego Center for Mindfulness maintains responsibility for this program and its content. This course offers 11.0 CE credit.
California licensed MFTs, LPCCs, LEPs, LCSWs:
Continuing Education Credit for this program is provided by UC San Diego Center for Mindfulness. The UC San Diego Center for Mindfulness is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. 11.0 CE Credit may be applied to your license renewal through the California Board of Behavioral Sciences. For those licensed outside California, please check with your local licensing board to determine if CE Credit is accepted.
UC San Diego Center for Mindfulness is approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider Number CEP16351, for 13.0 contact hours. Please check with your local board to see if California BRN contact hours are applicable.
Fees for CE credits: $45 USD (Submit when registering)
In order to receive CE credits you must attend the whole course. Credit will not be given for partial attendance. There is also an online evaluation which must be filled-out after the workshop concludes. CE Certificates will be emailed 2-3 weeks after the course.
If you have any questions about CEs, please email email@example.com
There are a limited number of scholarships available for this program. CMSC is especially committed to providing access to participants of color and members of other underserved groups and we prioritize scholarship applications of these individuals.
If you would like to apply for a scholarship, please fill out this form: Core Skills Training Scholarship Application
Kristin Neff received her doctorate from the University of California at Berkeley, studying moral development. She did two years of postdoctoral study at the University of Denver studying self-concept development. She is currently an Associate Professor of Educational Psychology at the University of Texas at Austin.
During Kristin’s last year of graduate school, she became interested in Buddhism and has been practicing meditation in the Insight Meditation tradition ever since. While doing her post-doctoral work she decided to conduct research on self-compassion – a central construct in Buddhist psychology and one that had not yet been examined empirically. Kristin is a pioneer in the field of self-compassion research, creating a scale to measure the construct over fifteen years ago. In addition to writing numerous academic articles and book chapters on the topic, she is the author of the book Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself, released by William Morrow.
In conjunction with her colleague Dr. Chris Germer, she has developed an empirically supported training program called Mindful Self-Compassion, which is taught by thousands of teachers worldwide. They co-authored The Mindful Self-Compassion Workbook as well as Teaching the Mindful Self-Compassion Program: A Guide for Professionals, both published by Guilford. She is also co-founder and board president of the nonprofit Center for Mindful Self-Compassion.
Chris Germer, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist and lecturer on psychiatry (part-time) at Harvard Medical School. He co-developed the Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) program with Kristin Neff in 2010 and MSC has since been taught to over 100,000 people worldwide. They co-authored two books on MSC, The Mindful Self-Compassion Workbook and Teaching the Mindful Self-Compassion Program.
Chris spends most of his time lecturing and leading workshops around the world on mindfulness and self-compassion. He is also the author of The Mindful Path to Self-Compassion; he co-edited two influential volumes on therapy, Mindfulness and Psychotherapy, and Wisdom and Compassion in Psychotherapy; and he maintains a small private practice in Arlington, Massachusetts, USA.