San Francisco Bay Area Chapter ACBS

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  • Compassionate Social Fitness for All - with Lynne Henderson

Compassionate Social Fitness for All - with Lynne Henderson

  • 23 May 2017
  • 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
  • UCSF / Mt. Zion Hospital, 1600 Divisidero, San Francisco, CA, Room 3906

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Free Event for all Professional, Student/Intern and Affiliate Members
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Compassionate Social Fitness for All

Tuesday May 23

7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Chapter Meeting - Free Event

Shyness is a universal human emotion. Dr. Henderson will discuss how she came to understand shyness and how it has been pathologized in our U. S. culture. She will describe how studying shyness led her to see it as a basic human emotion. This understanding also led to calling her work with shyness and social anxiety, Social Fitness Training. Dr. Henderson helps people challenge the self-blame and shame that results from the societal misunderstanding of shyness and to practice social fitness like athletes practice physical fitness on a daily basis. Dr. Henderson also helps people develop compassion for the self and others, based on the research and clinical work of Paul Gilbert, the research of Kristen Neff and the clinical work of Chris Germer. Her talk will also address using CFT to work with shyness and social anxiety, fears of compassion, and how our place in the genetic lottery and our early conditioning contribute to the universal tendency to have negative automatic thoughts about the past and future. She will also outline her vision for the future in terms of the active participation and leadership talents and skills of the shy.


Lynne Henderson is founder of the Social Fitness Center, and founder and Co-Director, with Philip Zimbardo, of the Shyness Institute.  Dr. Henderson was a visiting scholar in the Psychology Department at Stanford University for 13 years, a lecturer for five years, and a faculty member in Continuing Studies. She also served as a Consulting Associate Professor in Counseling Psychology for 10 years. She directed the Shyness Clinic for 25 years and conducted research and shyness groups at the Stanford Counseling Center for seven years. Her research interests include translating the results of social psychology and personality theory into clinical work, specifically, the negative stereotyping of shyness, the influence of personality variables and cultural influences on interpersonal perception and motivation, the leadership styles of shy leaders, and compassionate social fitness.

In 2010 she wrote a book called Improving social confidence and reducing shyness using compassion focused therapy and in 2011 wrote Helping your shy and socially anxious client: A social fitness training protocol using CBT. Dr. Henderson is trained in Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction and Mindful Self Compassion and teaches classes in MSC. She also works in private practice with clients dealing with various personal and interpersonal issues. She is the Director of Social Fitness Training for Courageous Leadership, LLC., where she is translating the Social Fitness Model into structured exercises that facilitate skillful courageous conversations in business.


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