Exploring social work professionals’ experiences of the mindfulness-based social work and self-care programme: A focus group study

Alan Maddock*, Karen McGuigan, Pearse McCusker

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

The evidence for the potential of mindfulness-based programmes to support improved social work practice and self-care is growing. The aim of this focus group study was to explore social workers’ (n = 13) experiences of the Mindfulness-based Social Work and Self-care programme (MBSWSC). Thematic analysis highlighted two superordinate themes: benefits to direct social work practice and coping with the social work role. Four subordinate themes highlighted the different social work practice components that were enhanced through MBSWSC participation: social work assessment, service user engagement and team working, working to social work values, and social work skills. Three subordinate themes identified improvements in individual processes which supported enhanced stress coping: moving from avoidant to approach coping, improved boundaries, increased emotional awareness and reduced negative thinking. Our findings indicate that the MBSWSC programme can have a multi-faceted positive effect on social work practice, and on social work professional’s capacity to cope with their role.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)352-367
Number of pages17
JournalSocial Work in Public Health
Volume39
Issue number4
Early online date4 Mar 2024
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2024

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • coping
  • mindfulness
  • self-care
  • social work practice

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