New free mindfulness course for chartered accountants aims to increase resilience and focus

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A new introduction to mindfulness course to be introduced by Chartered Accountants’ Benevolent Association later this year is designed to help increase resilience and focus.

This one day course enables delegates to understand how mindfulness techniques can improve their ability to cope with pressures in the workplace or at home, manage anxiety or depression, boost their concentration and energy levels and improve their decision making.

It also examines the manner in which mindfulness can make positive changes to the way in which your brain works as well as teaching how to practice the empirically supported benefits of mindfulness.

Gill Thackray, who has created the course with CABA, said that mindfulness was rapidly becoming adopted in many areas of professional and corporate life, and was widely recognised as having major benefits.

She said: “This course is very much designed for chartered accountants and so promotes mindfulness from a practical point of view, looking at the evidence, at case studies and at how to practice its techniques.

“People who successfully adopt mindfulness skills find that they can help them in all kinds of ways including managing pressure, increasing focus on tasks ahead of them and enhancing their general performance.

“It is all about learning to stop, relax into the moment and feel the thoughts and sensations happening to your mind and body in a non-judgemental way.”

The mindfulness course is the latest to be introduced under CABA’s Career Adaptability banner. During the last year, this has become the most successful strand of the charity’s training programme, teaching skills that accountants are likely to find essential but which are not part of their normal professional development.

Lucy Whitehall, Wellbeing Manager at CABA, said: “The introduction of our Career Adaptability courses was prompted by research carried out with ICAEW by Dr Hilary Lindsay which found that, after professional competence, career adaptability was the most important element of lifelong learning for chartered accountants.

“The research identified five behavioural attributes within career adaptability - engaging, exploring, experimenting, positive attitude and self-belief. These attributes will be needed to tackle the likelihood that accountancy careers during the next few decades will be quite different from those seen before the recession. They will probably be longer, for a start, with less stability and possibly periods of unemployment, plus breaks to accommodate life events outside of work.

“This means that accountants will need a range of new skills in order to adapt to and shape their changing lives. Our set of courses, including the new mindfulness training, now covers all of the areas identified by Dr Lindsay and their popularity indicates that they have very much struck a chord with chartered accountants. Certainly, our research shows that 99% of people who attended between February and April felt that our training had improved their sense of wellbeing.”

Details about CABA’s Career Adaptability courses, free to chartered accountants, can be found at www.caba.org.uk/courses. The new mindfulness courses will commence in October.

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