Marcus Averbeck

I am a consultant systemic psychotherapist, MBCT teacher, trainer and supervisor. Since 2003 I have been working as the Head of Family Therapy in a south east London NHS trust which specialises in community health, mental health and learning disability services. In addition, I have been playing a leading role in the implementation of MBCT across the trust since 2008. I supervise individual clinicians and groups in their mindfulness-based teaching practice and offer eight-week MBCT courses to different groups: for people suffering from recurring depression, chronic pain, or anxieties; for couples; for carers or family members; and for staff. I also provide (together with colleagues) in-house teacher training for clinicians who are working towards becoming MBCT teachers.

Two days a week, I work privately as a consultant psychotherapist in Canterbury where I offer (apart from systemic psychotherapy) MBCT classes for groups, couples and individuals, as well as supervision for mindfulness-based teachers.


Qualifications

  • Doctorate in Psychotherapy; DPsych (London)
  • Postgraduate Diploma in the Supervision of Family and Systemic Psychotherapy (London)
  • MSc in Systemic Psychotherapy (London)
  • MA in Pastoral Psychology and Theology (Frankfurt/Main & Insbruck))
  • BAHons in Philosophy (Frankfurt/Main)

Teaching-Training Specialisms

  • MBCT in clinical settings
  • MBSR for general populations
  • Implementation of MBCT in the NHS
  • MBIs for work place settings
  • Teaching school teachers as part of the MYRIAD project

Supervision Experience

  • Apart from my supervisory work within the field of systemic psychotherapy since the 1990’s, I have been supervising mindfulness-based teachers since 2011, following my teacher-training apprenticeship with Mark Williams, and supervision training with Cindy Cooper and Jody Mardula.
  • I am trained in the MBI:TAC.

Personal Practice

My first experience of formal meditation practice started in my late teenage years in the early 1980’s, which can best be described as contemplative practice within in a Christian context. Almost a decade later, in 1990, I started Zen practice within a Japanese Zen tradition. In 2014, I was installed as a Zen teacher in the White Plum Asangha. I am the resident teacher at the Canterbury based Jin-Dai-Chi Zendo where we practice daily Zazen (sitting meditation) in a group, and offer longer Zen retreats.

My interest and formal training in MBCT began in 2007, born out of a combination of personal Zen practice and professional curiosity in this “new” approach. The application of mindfulness-based interventions in my work as a psychotherapist is continuously enriching my personal practice, and vice-versa.

Since 2015, I have begun to learn Tai-Chi (Nei-Gung) which I thoroughly enjoy and try to weave into my Zen and mindfulness practice.


Research Activities and Interests

  • As a systemic psychotherapist I am naturally inclined to focus on relationships in my work with clients. As such, I have been offering eight-week MBCT groups to couples where one or both partners have been suffering from depression, anxiety, or stress. I am interested in researching the specific components and outcomes of MBCT groups for couples.
  • I am also interested in the evaluation of MBCT in NHS settings.
  • I am taking part in the Randomised Controlled Trial of the MYRIAD Project as a mindfulness teacher.