Ep. 37: Dr. Ross White - Global Mental Health Expert and Author of "The Flexible Mind"


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In this episode, Dr. Ross White joins the conversation.
Dr. White is a professor of clinical psychology at Queens University in Belfast and an expert on global mental health. He has active research collaborations with the World Health Organization and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees investigating the efficacy of psychosocial interventions for reducing distress in the aftermath of humanitarian crises.
He's the lead editor of the Palgrave Handbook of Sociocultural Perspectives on Global Mental Health, and lead author of the recently published Acceptance and Commitment Approaches for Athletes' Wellbeing and Performance: The Flexible Mind.
Dr. White has a keen interest in supporting the mental health and well being of adults working in high-performance environments, including elite athletes. He has consulted with United Rugby Championship players, international track athletes, and Premier League Football Club academies.
He is an Association of Contextual Behavioral Science peer-reviewed trainer of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy.
Tim begins the episode with a brief body scan practice. Then, Dr. White talks with Keith and Tim about:
13:00 - How the Self-Help Plus intervention was developed and used in the context of international humanitarian crises.
17:00 - How to practice acceptance in the midst of crisis from an ACT perspective.
23:00 - Parallels between people experiencing humanitarian crises and the experiences of elite athletes.
25:00 - Using the principle of creative hopelessness and a focus on values to help people cultivate a "courageous willingness" to accept their experiences.
30:00 - Exploring how values help dignify the experience of accepting discomfort, and the importance of choice points in moving towards the things that matter.
34:00 - Navigating the line between acceptance and overwhelm using the metaphor "dropping anchor" and making distinctions between immersion and emerging.
39:00 - The importance of creating clarity of what mindfulness is, and building the capacity for mindfulness over time.
43:00 - Grounding techniques used by elite rugby players.
45:00 - Developing the whole person, not just the athletic performer.
Books Mentioned:
Perform Under Pressure by Dr. Ceri Evans
The Chimp Paradox by Dr. Steve Peters
Mindful Sport Performance Enhancement by Drs. Keith Kaufman, Carol Glass, and Tim Pineau
Acceptance and Commitment Approaches for Athletes' Wellbeing and Performance: The Flexible Mind by Ross G. White, Andrew Bethell, Lewis Charnock, Stephen Leckey, and Victoria Penpraze.
Social Media Mentioned:

Twitter: @mind_flexer
Twitter: @mindfulsportdoc
Instagram: @mindful_sport_podcast
Youtube: Mindful Sport Performance Podcast
Websites Mentioned:
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Very much appreciated,
Keith & Tim

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