The Practice of Mindfulness and its Role in the School Community, presentation by Doug Worthen
When: December 13, 2017, 7:00 – 9:00 pm
Where: CCHS Auditorium
Doug Worthen is the Director of Mindfulness Programs at the Middlesex School in Concord, Massachusetts. Since 2010 he has been educating the Middlesex School community (students, athletes, faculty, staff, and parents) in the practice of mindfulness. Doug began using mindfulness in 1999 as a way to reduce stress and enhance his athletic performance as a member of the University of Virginia national championship lacrosse team. Since he began practicing, he has seen the benefits and positive impact of mindfulness on academics, athletics, relationships, business, and overall happiness. In 2007, Doug was diagnosed with a rare lymphoma and credits his practice of mindfulness as critical to his survival and healing. Doug came out of that experience committed to sharing mindfulness with students, and his presentation will include information about the practice of mindfulness as well as the growing movement towards bringing mindfulness into the educational setting. In addition to teaching the Mindfulness Program at the Middlesex School, Doug has attended many mindfulness retreats and trained as a mindfulness educator at such places as the UMass Center for Mindfulness, Brown University, the Mindful Education Institute, and the Mindfulness in Schools Project.
Over thirty years of research supports the use of mindfulness, which include improvements in attention, sleep, emotional regulation, self-esteem, anxiety, depression and ADHD. Recent brain imaging research, including work by Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard University, shows that mindfulness practice positively alters the structures of the brain associated with learning, memory, empathy, and stress. Mindfulness has now become a mainstream influence in medicine, psychology, business, and education.