Practicing mindfulness to combat stress using the “SMPLE” method

Practicing mindfulness to combat stress contributes to better emotional control, improved health, increased resilience, enhanced productivity, and healthier relationships with others.

On the seventh episode of TAYO Naman! (Tulong, Alaga, Yakap at Oras para sa mga Tagapagtaguyod ng Edukasyon), a webinar series of the Department of Education (DepEd) and Globe, speaker Carolyn Tongco advised educators that one way to manage stress, aside from asking for professional help, is through the practice of mindfulness. Tongco is a Consultant Art Therapist of the Philippine Mental Health Association member, Creative Director at Creative Passion Path, and a registered Expressive Art Consultant/Educator (REACE).

Tongco discussed that for Master Jon Kabat-Zin “is the practice of the non-judgmental awareness in the present moment and a non-reactive, non-judgmental, and open-hearted observation.”

Using Mindfulness, Tongco said people could learn how to regulate the brain to stop the automatic emotional stress responses. She suggested using the “SMPLE” method in order to do this:

S — Stop. Instead of becoming wrapped up in a stressful situation, just stop and take a moment to breathe.

M — Mindful breathing. Take deep breaths. It relaxes the body and helps calm the brain.

P — Pay attention. Assess where stress is happening.

L — Look inside and reflect. Know what is causing the stress.

E — Effective response. Think of the right response or the kindest way to treat oneself and other people.

Tongco added that mindfulness could be practiced every day, not just during stressful situations. Anyone may opt to do mindfulness anytime, even while working, eating, or having a conversation.

She suggested designing one’s mindful moment routine that may be applied during mundane activities such as washing the dishes, making the bed, watering the plants, among others. One must bring full attention to the activity and do it repetitively, just like a routine. 

TAYO Naman! is an online Mental Health and Psychosocial Support program designed to help teachers, non-teaching personnel, and parents learn about self-care, wellness, and resiliency.

The latest session focused on “Practicing Mindfulness to Manage Stress.” It was by the DepEd School Division of Cavite City, with Project Development Officer II Patricia Anne Garcia as host, Senior Education Program Specialist Estrella Gonzales as facilitator and Teacher Shiela Lee, Principal Randie Salonga, and Medical Officer, Dr. Erwin Bucu.

The 14-part webinar series is led by the DepEd Disaster Risk Reduction Management Services (DepEd-DRRMS) and the Bureau of Human Resource and Organizational Development-Employee Welfare Division (BHROD-EWD) in collaboration with Globe’s Global Filipino Teachers Series on Psychosocial Support Services, Philippine Mental Health Association Inc., and MAGIS Creative Spaces.

The eighth episode on July 9 will be about “Promoting Digital Well-being,” to be hosted by SDO Tacloban City.

The webinars are held every Friday until August 20, 2021, from 8:30 to 10:00 am and streamed live on DepEd Philippines, DepEd DRRMS, and  Globe Bridgecom.

Globe strongly supports the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals such as UN SGD No. 3 on good health and well-being and UN SDG No. 4 on inclusive and equitable quality education for all. Globe is committed to upholding the United Nations Global Compact principles and contributing to 10 UN SDGs.

To learn more about how to create a #GlobeofGood, visit www.globe.com.ph/about-us/sustainability.html.

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