When we established Mindful Therapies in 2013 (then known as Mindfulness Based Therapies) I was clear that my vision was to provide the benefits of mindfulness to as many people as possible, regardless of income. The vision was to bring mindfulness to the masses.

As we developed, we more firmly established our values and mission statement. Our four key values were: Integrity, Innovation, Inclusivity and Compassion. However, in 2015, we made an amendment which is crucial to who we are as an organisation and the ways that the team are now thinking. We have added a core value – positivity.

So why positivity? On a practical level our inclusion of positivity is a reflection of the fact that Mindful Therapies is now including positive psychology as an integral part of our courses and workshops. Positive psychology is the science of happiness and is born out of the belief that it isn’t enough to focus on helping people to manage difficulties such as stress, depression and anxiety. Instead, we need to focus on positive strategies to develop wellbeing and meaning, enabling us to be happy and flourish. In a previous blog I emphasised the importance of embracing suffering in order to face our situation with compassion. While this is clearly important, we can often get stuck in simply responding to suffering and miss the beauty and wonder of a positive outlook

Our values are now:

We strive to be honest in all interactions, both with service users and business partners. We aim to empower service users to make positive choices for themselves, and aim to be non-exploitative in all that we do. Similarly we aim to treat all people with respect. We strive to remain true to our core motivation at all times – which is to enable the benefits of mindfulness to be available to all – including those who are financially and socially excluded. All decisions will be tested against this core motive.

2. Innovation
We recognise that all people are different. As such we aim to be creative and innovative in providing services that appeal to the differing needs of individuals. This also includes unique partner work with other organisations.

3. Inclusivity
We believe that everyone has the right and the potential to make positive choices, regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability and income. We aim to offer a range of services that is accessible to all. We also strive to create a sense of community at all levels of the organisation. This means creating and fostering a supportive network of connection and teamwork that includes trainers, trainees and service users.

4. Positivity.
We believe that everyone has the potential to make positive changes in their lives. Mindful Therapies strives to encourage focus on the positive and give people the opportunity to flourish.
You may notice that compassion is no longer listed as a value. This is for two reasons. Firstly, compassion might be described as a kindly response to suffering. The emphasis on compassion might imply that we are always in some way suffering. I increasingly believe that this doesn’t reflect the experience of all of us. Yes, we all suffer sometimes but suffering is only part of the story. Secondly, all of the values – integrity, innovation, inclusivity and positivity are motivated by a desire for people to live their lives to the fullest – when people start from a place of suffering, this means responding with compassion.

We are committed to working in a way that keeps us inspired and are really excited to continue exploring positivity in all that we do.