5 Things I Learned From A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Course

Lewis Keens
Age of Awareness
Published in
10 min readApr 12, 2020


Read any current ‘morning routine’ book, and the chances are, there will be a chapter on meditation.

Often it is identified as an essential part of the break of dawn ‘to-do’ list.

We should wake up from an uninterrupted eight hours of sleep, exercise, drink lots of water and have a healthy breakfast. We must then do some meditation before we try, in earnest, to articulate an answer to a problematic email or plan our 7.30 am parent meeting.

In reality, despite our best intentions, we often fall short of our eight hours of sleep. We grab a quick shower and eat a snack on the way out of the door.

We then curse ourselves for emphatically NOT being part of a prestigious group of productive early risers and not being entirely prepared for the day ahead.

Despite a lack of enthusiasm in getting up early, I read a lot of research and started to include meditation into my daily schedule — although not always in the morning — a few years ago. There was no immediate enlightenment, but with a few weeks practise, it seemed to allow me a little more bandwidth to deal with the variety of scenarios that arise in a day in the life of a teacher.

I was aware I had a little more patience and found I had more energy towards the end of the day. All in, it seemed beneficial for me.

I followed the well-trodden path of app-based meditation; many of you will know the drill. Log in to your mobile app and then sit through the ten minutes, trying your best to follow the narration while desperately trying not to think about everything else.

After the ten minutes, your reward is the little screen outlining your’ day streak’.

Whoop, meditation done.

Move onto the next task.

I thought I understood it

Headspace iOS App (www.headspace.com)

I recently had the opportunity to complete a Mindful-Based Stress Reduction course at my school. I wasn’t sure how something like this worked, and I was intrigued as to its effect on my practice in school.

I spoke to a close colleague that had completed the course a year or so earlier. She described the course as ‘transformational’ for both her…