Compassionate Mind Training is an integral part of Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT). It involves psycho-education that helps us to understand our tricky brains and how difficult it can be to be ‘human’, whilst teaching a variety of mind and body skills that help us to be with these struggles in a helpful and supportive way.
We can learn to direct our compassionate minds to others and to ourselves, with the intention to be helpful not harmful.
In 2015, Dr Chris Irons and Dr Charlie Heriot-Maitland developed and ran the first 8 Week CMT course for the general public. The course built upon the pioneering work of Professor Paul Gilbert and Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT), and was designed to bring many of the ideas and practices of CMT to non-clinical populations.
This 8 Week CMT group has now been run across the world, including in the UK, Greece, Denmark, Spain, South America and Australia. It’s been run with a variety of populations, including:
In 2020, Chris and Charlie published findings of the 8-week course based on 55 participants who completed pre- and post- course questionnaires. The research found that the course led to:
These changes were maintained at 3-month follow-up, and the results suggested that increases in self-compassion – and reductions in self-criticism – were important in participants’ improvement in well-being and psychological distress.
The abstract of the paper can be found here, and if you’d like a full copy of the article, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
The CMT Facilitator Training (‘train the trainer’) course will equip participants with the theoretical and practical skills to deliver the 8-week CMT course (Irons & Heriot-Maitland, 2020), which is based upon the pioneering work of Professor Paul Gilbert.
The training consists of four parts:, which includes elements of personal practice, theoretical and practical work, responding to common issues and feedback, and supervision of facilitating CMT sessions.
The only pre-requisite for participants enrolling on this course is that they must be a health or social care practitioner with experience of working with mental health and wellbeing.
The total fee for the course is £1500 (all four parts); however, if a participant has already attended an 8-week course (Part 1) or a CFT introductory training (Part 2) and can provide evidence of this at the time of enrolling, they will not be required to (re-)attend this part.
PART 1 – Personal practice
Date: Accessible anytime – content is pre-recorded
Time: 8 x 2 hours*
Content: Experiencing the CMT 8-week course as a participant.
Attendance can be either via one of the live courses that are run by Balanced Minds at various points / locations over the year, or via a pre-recorded version that can be accessed from home in your own time.
(*8 x 2 hours and £250 fee is for the pre-recorded version only. Live courses are 8 x 2.5 hours and between £300- £345, depending on location)
Part 2 – Introduction to CFT
Date: get in to touch for next dates (email@example.com)
Time: Two days
Content: A two day introductory workshop facilitated by an experienced CFT trainers
This part provides participants with a solid foundation in the science and theory of Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT) and it’s application for promoting wellbeing
PART 3 – The 8-week protocol
Date: 29th November – 3rd December 2021 (online)
Time: 9.30am-4.30pm UK
Content: A 5-day workshop comprising a comprehensive walkthrough the 8- week protocol, including practical exercises, role plays, dealing with feedback, questions, and common issues.
Day 1: Overview & Week 1
Day 2: Weeks 2 & 3
Day 3: Weeks 4 & 5
Day 4: Weeks 6 & 7
Day 5: Week 8 & Wrap up
PART 4 – Supervision
Date: To be confirmed upon completion of Part 3
Time: TBC upon completion of Part 3
Content: After completing Parts 1-3, supervision is providing in the form of ‘drop in’ 90-min online consultation groups, with 3-4 participants in each.
The minimum requirement to complete Part 4 is participation in 8 supervision groups.
Group date options will be posted on the Balanced Minds website in December 2021, and there will be no time limit for completing all 8.
Hi, i’m Chris. I’m a clinical psychologist specialising in Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT) and Compassionate Mind Training (CMT).
I’ve got many years of experience in helping individuals, groups and organisations cultivate their compassionate minds – becoming more compassionate with themselves and others. I’ve published lots of research on the benefits of compassion, and have authored a number of compassion-related books, including the Compassionate Mind Workbook & Compassionate Mind Approach to Difficult Emotions.
Hi, I’m Charlie. I am a clinical psychologist specialising in Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT) and Compassionate Mind Training (CMT).
I provide compassion-focused interventions for individuals, groups, and organisations. I have also run over a hundred various compassion training workshops both nationally and internationally.
CMT Facilitator Training can either be booked as a training package, or as individual training events.
To book a training package:
To book an individual training event: