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PDV 103 — Playful Mindfulness

Quarter: Fall
Day(s): Wednesdays
Course Format: On-campus
Duration: 10 weeks
Date(s): Sep 26—Dec 5
Time: 7:00—8:50 pm
Drop Deadline: Oct 9
Units: 2
Tuition: $500
Instructor(s): Ted DesMaisons
Limit: 30
Status: Closed
Please Note: No class on November 21
7:00—8:50 pm
Sep 26—Dec 5
10 weeks
Drop By
Oct 9
2 Units
Ted DesMaisons
Please Note: No class on November 21
The fast-paced demands of our current world often leave us breathless and frustrated. Mindfulness—paying attention to the present moment with curiosity and kindness—helps us slow down, take a breath, and befriend the inner resources that lead to discovery, delight, and a life well-lived. Integrating insights and exercises from Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) with those from improvisational theater, this course will help you forge new neural pathways and develop a more connected personal presence. While mindfulness training sometimes takes on a somber or even pious tone (this is serious stuff!), in this course we will take a different track, learning to “play attention” through traditional methods and also through humor, games, and exercises drawn from improvisational theater. Our topics will include our relationship to failure, cultivating curiosity and kindness, paying attention, the mind as storyteller, mindfulness in motion, moving from reactivity to response, getting space from thoughts and feelings, sharing control, connected presence, and exploring difficult emotions. Learning modes will include formal mindfulness practices, informal practices that integrate these skills into daily life, and shared inquiry using safe small and large discussions to draw wisdom from the whole group.

Students are expected to commit to at least twenty minutes of daily practice at home for the duration of the course. Please note: This course may be photographed or recorded. During registration, students will have the option to sign a release or opt out of being included in such images.

Ted DesMaisons, Founder and Principal, ANIMA Learning

Ted DesMaisons has studied, performed, and taught improvisation internationally, including with Patricia Ryan Madson, the Stanford Improvisors, and BATS Improv of San Francisco. He is a trained Mindfulness- Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) instructor and also serves as the US partner for the UK-based Mindfulness in Schools Project. He received an MBA from Stanford and an MTh from Harvard Divinity School.

Textbooks for this course:

(Required) Mark Williams , Mindfulness: Finding Peace in a Frantic World (ISBN 978-1609618957)
(Optional) Patricia Ryan Madson, Improv Wisdom (ISBN 978-1400081882)