One of the best ways to counter stress is to pay attention to what is going on. That may sound counterintuitive, but paying attention is the first step toward cultivating mindfulness.
Stress ~ FOCUS ~ Thrive
Mindful Photography to support the wellbeing and resilience of your employees
This two-hour interactive workshop is designed to help your employees notice when stress arises within them and teaches a strategy using their smartphone camera mindfully to manage this stress helping promote resilience. The skill taught can be practiced within a 2-minute window, intended to ensure its accessibility within the competing demands of the modern workplace.
At its root, mindfulness is premised on living in the present moment, and this workshop helps make mindfulness accessible by adapting a skill employees already have (taking pictures on their phone), rather than teaching something completely new.
The workshop is limited to 2 hours as this enables employers to release staff without a significant compromise to productivity. Two workshops can be run in a day (morning and afternoon) which allows twice as many staff to attend.
You may also want to consider one of our quiet days which can be tailored as a team away day. A common complaint of team away days is they often rely on physical activities which can be difficult for some staff. We can run a bespoke quiet day to meet your corporate and staff needs. Through the creative use of photography we help staff to see from one another’s perspectives. The aim of these days is to strengthen team dynamics and build a culture of kindness through which wellbeing is embraced as a corporate responsibility, not simply an individual endeavour.
Together, let's cultivate a healthier, happier, and more harmonious work environment, where individuals thrive and teams flourish.
Frequently asked questions
Do I need to be a good photographer?
No. Modern cameras take great pictures all on their own. Our focus is not on the technical side of photography (although Steve will help if you get stuck) but rather we focus on how we see and being truly present to the things in front of us which we often miss in the busyness of life. Whist we welcome keen photographers onto our workshops, if you like taking pictures on your phone and perhaps sharing them with friends or on social media, you are more than qualified to attend one of our workshops and we would love to see you there.
Do I need an expensive camera?
No. You simply need a camera you enjoy using. This can be the one on your phone or if you have another camera bring this along to the workshop – then you have the choice of which to use. Our retreats and workshops do not focus on technique, but we will help you get the most out of your smartphone or camera.
Does this help with anxiety or depression?
Possibly. We all get unwell at times whether that is a mental illness or physical illnesses. It’s really important you see your doctor if you are unwell as there are many treatments available. There is a lot of research linking mindfulness to better health so our workshops may help you maintain better mental and emotional health but we are not an alternative to recognised treatments. If you have been diagnosed with a mental illness, you must chat to your doctor or therapist before attending one of our workshops.
Is this art therapy?
No. Art therapy is practiced by registered practitioners, often working in mental health centres. There is a lot of research on the health benefits of mindfulness. Our approach helps make mindfulness accessible by showing you how to use the camera you carry around in your smartphone (or a normal camera) to centre in the moment for brief periods throughout your day.
Do you work in the corporate and public sectors?
Yes. We believe our approach has huge benefits for teams and we can provide a dedicated workshop for your place of work. The visual exercises we do help us realise how we all see and approach things differently. This can promote a better understanding of our colleagues, allows problems to be viewed from different perspectives and can build team cohesion which can lead to greater productivity and staff wellbeing.
Do I need to be religious?
No. Most of the major world religions have a contemplative tradition, and our background is found within the Christian tradition and we use a spiritual technique called visio divina. But, you do not need to share a Christian faith to benefit from a workshop. For Church groups and Christian retreat centres we frame our approach within a Christian narrative, but all our other work embraces a secular approach as we want these workshops to be open and of benefit to everyone. We have a lot we can learn from one another.
the 5 steps to wellbeing
The 5 Steps to wellbeing were researched by the New Economics Foundation and are endorsed by the NHS and the mental health charity Mind, aimed at improving the mental health and wellbeing of the whole population.
You can read about the steps under each tab below, and how they relate to Soulful Vision retreats and workshops.
Evidence suggests that feeling close to and valued by others is an important human need.
Our workshops bring people together in a relaxed and affirming atmosphere. No technical critique of photos is allowed, rather we see each image as a gift allowing us to learn about ourselves and others.
Exercise is linked to good mental health.
Our workshops encourage you to be active within your own limits, using mindful walking to connect with your environment.
If you cannot get out of your house don’t worry, our activities will encourage you to be active within your home.
We rush through life, getting the children ready for school, running for the bus, working through the pile of paper on our desk – we don’t have time to notice the beauty around us.
Research has shown that when we ‘take time’ to notice what is happening around us our wellbeing is enhanced and and our life priorities are reaffirmed.
We think we need lots of time to ‘take notice but we teach you some basic photography skills around seeing light which help us slow down and take notice.
You’ll find it only takes a moment and is incorporated into your daily activities – no sitting crossed legged for an hour or more meditating! A moment is all you need to pause.
Learning can enhance our self-esteem and encourage us to be more active in life.
You will learn about contemplative photography and mindfulness on our workshops. More importantly you will learn about yourself, one another (family, friends and work colleagues) and our interconnectedness with nature.
You will be introduced to the nine principles of mindfulness which are: non-judging; patience; a beginners mind; trust; non-striving; acceptance; letting-go; gratitude; generosity.
There is a lot of research about the importance of community and some studies suggest that those who help others feel more satisfied in life.
Within our workshops and retreats we work together, to support each other in our quest to learn contemplative photography.
A powerful part of our day, is sharing our pictures with one another. This is a precious thing to give as our pictures reflect something of ourselves. We also give as we reflect what we see in each others pictures. Through this we learn how we each see differently which builds acceptance and relationships – but there is never any expectation or pressure to share more than we are comfortable with.