Lessons Learned: Advice from Global Leaders in Compassion Education

Compassion Research Lab

January 28, 2022

Applied Learning: The Challenge of Implementing and Sustaining Compassion Training Programs

While there is now good evidence that we can in fact improve compassion through education, implementing programs that aim to enhance compassion competency in learners and sustaining these learnings over time within fast-paced, under resourced, and highly complex practice environments is an ongoing challenge.  So, in light of this challenge, we decided to conduct qualitative interviews with preeminent global leaders of compassion training programs to determine the factors that affect the operationalization of compassion training programs in the real world.


If you Could have a Coffee Conversation with an International Compassion Leader Who Would you Want at the Table and What Would you Ask Them?

In a nutshell, this is the question that we asked ourselves in the Compassion Research Lab in conceptualizing this study, causing us to turn to the scientific literature to determine who we should include on our invite list.  A few months later we found ourselves sitting at the proverbial coffee table with the likes of Dr. Kristin Neff, Dr. Paul Gilbert, Dr. James Doty, Dr. Beth Lown and other giants in the field who were kind enough to not only participate in this study but agreed to have their contributions recognized by having their names acknowledged in the manuscript.


A Compassion Teaching Plan: What are the Core Ingredients and Challenges that Impact the Success of Compassion Training Programs in Healthcare?

Together, they identify, six factors that in their experience of developing and implementing compassion training programs need to be considered: 1) Who and why is the program being developed?; 2) What is the key content that should be delivered?; 3) What are the most effective teaching methods?; 4) What are theessential qualities that teachers need to embody?; 5) Challenges and Facilitators to implementing and sustaining compassion training programs and; 6) The need and challenge of evaluating the effectiveness and impact of these programs over-time.


Join the Conversation

So pull up a chair, grab a coffee, and join the conversation: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/epub/10.1080/10401334.2021.2017941?needAccess=true

Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

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