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The University of Michigan Depression Center’s Bright Nights™ public forum series gives community members the opportunity to obtain up-to-date information on a variety of topics related to depression. The forums are designed to allow for discussion and Q & A between audience members and expert panelists.

Each forum begins with an overview of the evening's topic, presented by an expert from the Depression Center, followed by a Q & A and discussion session between the audience and panel. The panels are comprised of the Depression Center content expert and additional panelists, including participants from outside of the Michigan Medicine health system, in order to make this a truly community-wide forum.


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Self-Compassion as a Resilience Factor in Mental Health

November 14, 2017 | Presenter: Ricks Warren

A fast-growing body of research suggests that self-compassion is strongly linked to mental health. Self-compassion has been consistently associated with lower levels of depression and anxiety, perfectionism, fear of failure, and rumination. Self-compassion is also associated with psychological strengths such as happiness, optimism, wisdom, altruism, and healthy interpersonal relationships. Further, self-compassion has been shown to lead to self-improvement motivation in the face of personal weaknesses, failure, and past moral transgressions. Self-compassion is associated with resilience and adaptive emotion regulation in the general population, and in specific populations, including major depressive disorder, adolescents and young adults, elderly residents in a retirement community, adults with spina bifida, and health care providers. Fortunately, interventions to increase self-compassion have been shown to be effective in both normal and clinical populations.

Self-compassion consists of three components: mindfulness, common humanity, and self-kindness. Mindfulness refers to the ability to observe one’s suffering so that one can be can be kind and supportive of oneself, rather than being harshly self-critical. Common humanity promotes the understanding that all human beings are imperfect, and that failure, rejection and adversity in life are part of being human.

To learn more about self-compassion, the University of Michigan Depression Center and the Ann Arbor District Library will present a Bright Nights community forum titled, “Self-Compassion as a Resilience Factor in Mental Health” on Tuesday, November 14, from 7:00-8:30 p.m. in the Multi-Purpose Room of the downtown Ann Arbor District Library (corner of S. Fifth Ave. and William).

About the Presenter:
Ricks Warren, PhD, Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Michigan will give a brief overview presentation outlining the current research, including how mental health can be improved through self-compassion, and strategies for building self-compassion.

This will be followed by questions and discussion with a panel of experts including Kate Baker, MD, Clinical Instructor, U-M Department of Psychiatry; Paulette Grotrian, MA, Mindful Self-Compassion and Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Teacher; Mika Handelman, PhD, Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Michigan Psychological Clinic.

About the Program:
Bright Nights is open to the public and there is no charge for attendance. For more information, please visit the Depression Center website at, or contact Stephanie Salazar, 232-0330, or

Topic TBA

March 20, 2018 | Presenter: TBD

Past Forums

To view our entire catalog of past forums, click here.