exploring meditation and mindfulness: techniques and resources

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  • Exploring

    Meditation and


    Techniques and

    Resources for

    Cognitive Rehabilitation

    Meaghan G. Wright BA,


    Main Line Rehabilitation


  • Objectives

    Understand how mindfulness and

    meditation can help after a brain injury

    Identify at least two mindfulness

    techniques to improve thinking, mood,

    and self-awareness

    Resources for setting up your own

    mindfulness practice

  • What is Mindfulness?

    Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinns definition:

    Paying attention

    On purpose

    In the present moment


  • Aspects of mindfulness

    Intention- why you are doing it

    Attention-inner and outer experience

    Attitude- curiosity, acceptance, kindness

  • Why do people do it?

    Manage stress

    Manage pain

    Improve mood

    Increase focus

    Find balance

  • Mindfulness practice improves:

    Resilience- Davidson, Kabat-Zinn, 2003

    Mood- Hofmann et al, 2010

    Anxiety- Spek et al, 2013

    Empathy- Lazar, 2005

    Working memory- Jha et al, 2010

    Attention Azulay et al, 2012

    Grey matter - Holzel et al, 2011

  • Using Mindfulness to Cope with

    Difficult Emotions

    R Recognize the emotion youre feeling. Name it.

    A Accept the experience youre having.

    I Investigate Become curious about your experience. Where do you feel the emotion in your body? What kind of thoughts are going through your mind?

    N Non-identification See the emotion as a passing event rather than who you actually are

  • Some Approaches to Mindful


    Guided meditation

    Self-guided meditation

    Passive meditation

    Movement meditation

  • Guided Meditation

    Follow along while someone else instructs

    Good for those who need help with

    initiating and following through

    Requires sufficient language processing

    Good for those who are new to


  • Self-guided Meditation

    Body scan, mindful breathing

    Requires some familiarity with process

    Requires certain level of initiative and

    ability to remember directions

    Might be better for those who are

    distracted or annoyed by someone

    directing them

  • Passive meditation

    Sitting in nature, viewing nature scenes

    Works well for those with:

    Initiation problems

    Auditory processing difficulties or receptive


    Attention difficulties

    Resistance to traditional forms of meditation

  • Movement meditation


    Walking meditation

  • Day to Day Informal


    Mindful communication

    Mindful walking

    Mindful eating

    Mindful working

    Mindful waiting

    Acceptance of others

    Enjoying the moment

  • MLRAs Mindfulness Study

    10 participants

    10 week period of guided meditation

    Not all data in

    Good preliminary findings

  • Tools used to evaluate the


    MARS Moss Attention Rating Scale

    MPAI-Mayo Portland Adaptability Inventory

    Patient Competency Rating Scale Clinician (Prigatano)

    Patient Competency Rating Scale-Patient

    Process Training Attention Activity- Malia

    BAI-Beck Anxiety Inventory

    Qualitative survey designed by MLRA

  • Early outcomes

    60% noted

    on MPAI



    on MPAI for 1/3 participants

    PCRS scores indicated

  • PCRS clinician: percent of participants

    demonstrating an improvement












    Social Self Care Cognitive

  • Qualitative Questionnaire

    64% stated they were (lines up

    with BAI numbers)

    45% stated

    on their own

  • The Mindfulness App

    $1.99 -Set alerts to

    remind you to stop and

    meditate at a certain

    time, or day, or when

    you enter a certain location.

  • Mindfulness

    Meditation by

    Mental Workout

    Guided meditations for

    both beginners and more experienced

    mindfulness practitioners.

    Eight-week program,

    inspiration talks, body

    scans and relaxation instructions

  • Simply Being

    $1.99 Short guided meditations, with or without music and nature sounds. Perfect for beginners looking for something simple, Simply Being is highly rated for being user-friendly and customizable.

  • Meditate by

    Meditation Timer

    $3.99 Allows you to follow your own practice, either silently or

    accompanied by bells. The

    statistics feature also allows users

    to track their practice and chart


  • Walking Meditation by

    Meditation Oasis

    Geared toward mediation on-the-go.

    With three different guided walking

    meditations, users can plug in their

    headphones and unwind in transit. The

    app comes with a diary for users to

    keep track of their progress.

  • References

    Azulay J, Smart CM, Mott T, Cicerone KD. (2013). A pilot study examining the effect of mindfulness-

    based stress reduction on symptoms of chronic mild traumatic brain injury/postconcussive syndrome. J

    Head Trauma Rehabil. 2013 Jul-Aug;28(4):323-31

    Chiesa A, Calati R, Serretti A. (2011). Does mindfulness training improve cognitive abilities? A systematic

    review of neuropsychological findings. Clin Psychol Rev. 2011 Apr;31(3):449-64. doi:

    10.1016/j.cpr.2010.11.003. Epub 2010 Dec 1.

    Davidson, RJ, Kabat-Zinn, J., et al. (2003). Alterations in brain and immune function produced by

    mindfulness meditation. Psychosom Med. 2003 Jul-Aug;65(4):564-70.

    Hofmann, S., Sawyer, A., Witt, A., and Oh, D. (2010). The Effect of Mindfulness-Based Therapy on

    Anxiety and Depression: A Meta-Analytic Review. J Consult Clin Psychol. 2010 Apr; 78(2): 169183.

    Hlzel, BK, Carmody, J, et al. (2012) Mindfulness practice leads to increases in regional brain gray matter

    density. Psychiatry Res. 2011 Jan 30; 191(1): 3643.

    Jha AP, Stanley EA, Kiyonaga A, Wong L, Gelfand L. (2010). Examining the protective effects of

    mindfulness training on working memory capacity and affective experience. Emotion. 2010 Feb;10(1):54-


    Lazar SW, Kerr CE, Wasserman RH, et al. (2005). Meditation experience is associated with increased

    cortical thickness. Neuroreport. 2005 Nov 28;16(17):1893-7.

    Malia, K. & Brannagan, A. (2004). How to do cognitive rehabilitation therapy: A guide for all of us.

    Surrey, UK: Brain Tree Training.

    Malia, K. & Brannagan, A. (2005). How to do Cognitive Rehabilitation: Part one. Surrey, UK: Brain Tree


    Malia, K. & Brannagan, A. (2005). How to do Cognitive Rehabilitation: Part two. Surrey, UK: Brain Tree


    Moore A, Gruber,T, et al. (2012) Regular, brief mindfulness meditation practice improves

    electrophysiological markers of attentional control. Front Hum Neurosci. 2012; 6: 18

    Spek, A., Van Ham, N., Nyklek,I. (2013). Mindfulness-based therapy in adults with an autism spectrum

    disorder: A randomized controlled trial. Research in Developmental Disabilities Volume 34, Issue 1,

    January 2013, Pages 246253.


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