Saturday, April 10, 2021

Training in compassion improves the well-being of relatives to people with mental illness

I suggest reading the whole article.


News Release 7-Apr-2021
Aarhus University


If relatives of people with mental illness become better at accepting the difficult emotions and life events they experience - which is what training in compassion is about - their anxiety, depression and stress is reduced. These are the results of a new study from the Danish Center for Mindfulness at Aarhus University.

Being a relative of a person with a mental illness can be very burdensome. It can feel like a great responsibility, and many people struggle with feelings of fear, guilt, shame and anger. A new study from the Danish Center for Mindfulness shows that eight weeks of training in compassion can significantly improve the well-being of relatives.

Compassion is a human quality that is anchored in the recognition of and desire to relieve suffering. In other words, compassion occurs when we come into contact with our own or others' suffering and feel motivated to relieve our own or others pain.

"After completing the course, the relatives had increased their well-being on several parameters. They could deal with the illness in a new and more skillful way, and we saw that the training reduced their symptoms of depression, anxiety and stress," says psychologist and PhD student Nanja Holland Hansen, who is behind the study.

And the positive results were maintained after a six month follow-up.


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