Class Reviews

Overview of each class below, including at home practice and ways to be mindful, present and awake within each day

 

Current Classes and Coaching

7am Monday Mornings - 30 Park Ave, Arlington MA

1pm Saturdays - 30 Park Ave, Arlington MA ( Starting in Summer)

Thursday Night MBSR Series  at 

 1-on-1 and Small groups 

Held at your Home, or for your convenience, either location below;

OR

Class I: Mindful Awareness

There's More Right Than Wrong With You

No matter what challenges you are facing, challenges and difficulties are workable.

Mindful awareness defined as the awareness that arises from paying attention, on purpose, in the present moment, non-judgementally, (Kabat-Zinn, Full Catastrophe living, 2013) is fundamental to this approach since the present moment is the only time anyone ever has for perceiving, learning, growing and transforming.

We begin cultivating this awareness by a direct focused observation on sensory experience of very ordinary activities, such as eating just a single raisin, washing the dishes, brushing teeth etc.

As we practice focusing our mind to stay present and in tune with just whats happening in this very moment, we begin to condition the ability to be with just whats here, slowly dissolving the "story" of past and future judgements, perceptions and impulses that may flood our minds about a particular circumstance, situation and or task.

Through continued practice, we may begin to see the world, and whats happening inside of us with a clearer more open sense of being.

Home Practice - Just like exercise or anything else for that matter, we can read and re-read the concepts until the cows come home, but if we want to embody them, and feel the full affects of openness, ease, peace of the present moment, we want to (in our own time) begin to make practice a part of our daily lives.  Even if only just for 1-5 minutes! Thats a great start.

Mindful Eating as discussed in class- 1 meal a day

Awareness of breath meditation - 1-45min Daily

Class II: Perception and Creative Responding

Thoughts  Are Not Facts

How we see things (or don't see them) will determine in large measure how you will react or respond to them.

This ties in with how we see our pain, both emotional and physical.  How we see our stress and pressures in our lives, how we see an illness or ailment.

It is not the "stressors", or what we perceive as the stressors that is causing the physical discomfort and symptoms of stress, but how we are handling them that will determine the body's reaction to the situation or circumstance.

Stress, anxiety even worry are actually working with us.  They are allies, it is our perception that terms them as having a negative stigma.  But when we apply mindful awareness to them, we may find we don't need to fix ourselves, instead, maybe just take the time to get to know ourselves little better.

When we replace the idea that the way we feel is wrong, and we should be, or should not be or feel a certain way with acceptance, curiosity and non-judgement, over time and practice we may find that this openness leads to seeing our world through a new lense, a different perspective.

Home Pracice: Patience, these concepts take PRACTICE.  No different than learning anything else (just like an instrument, a new job etc)it takes time specially in the beginning.  Remember to be gentle with yourself, show yourself gratitude for taking this step, its the hardest work there is.  The effects will come to you In your own time just as they are meant to.  Never hesitate to reach out to me with anything.  

Mindful Awareness Activity - Choose daily activity to bring full awareness to for the week: Brushing Teeth, taking out the garbage, taking a shower etc

Pleasant Events Calendar - At lease one per day : )

Body Scan - 10-45 minutes, using MIM recording or video, Calm or Headspace App. Daily

AOB sitting meditation - 1-45 min Daily

Class III: Peace and Power of the Present Moment

The Present Moment is All we Really Have

"I have been through some terrible things in my life, some of which actually happened." Mark Twain

Begin to notice where  the mind is when worry or stress arises?  Are you in the present moment? Or is the mind darting back and forth between the past and future, then flashing blips of being present to the moment?  How much time in your day is spent like this?

If we add up all the time worrying, and all of the time that we really had to worry, is there a disparity? If so, Why?


Consider the possibility that by focusing on unpleasant memories or worries, we are missing many of life's pleasant moments happening all around us right here right now, and how what were taking in can lead to our disposition, for better or worse.

Ever notice when we feel pleasant were often in the present moment, and vice versa.

And as soon as the thoughts in the mind start churning we begin to want to cling to the good feelings, or push away the bad ones.

Home Practice: The wandering mind is within us all, the non-judgemental, deliberate re-directing of our attention is just as much a part of the practice as the object of focus, in practice and daily life. Ever welcoming ourselves back to the moment, knowing that as soon as we realize the mind has been wandering and or ruminating, were already back, smile you're already back in the moment : )

Unpleasant Events Calendar : 1 per day

Sitting meditation with AOB: 15-20 min per day

 

Body Scan: From MIM, Calm or Headspace

Class IV: Internal Stress Management

You Don't Need to Be Fixed, Just Heard Without Judgment

Only I can truly accept and allow myself to Be

By practicing mindfulness, we can cultivate curiosity and openness to the full range of experience and through this process explore a more open flexible attentional capacity wether it be physical or emotional pain or discomfort.

When we are able to approach what is really happening in the present moment, without our own imagination or story of what, why, how etc is happening, when the harder emotions (fear, anxiety etc) begin to arise, you may find they tend soften cumulatively with increasing awareness.

We can learn new ways of relating to stressful moments and circumstances through mindfulness.  Working in conjunction with recognizing and reducing the negative effects of automatic, habitual stress response.

 

We are not trying to get rid of worry, or try to fix it, but actually let it in, get to know it, investigating the idea of a new relationship with these emotions and feelings.  By responding proactively to stressful situations we increase the depth and dimensionality of our present moment experience, creating ever more space in between our habitual thoughts, reactions and response.

Home Practice:  By pointing mindfulness inward to our own bodies, we begin practicing awareness of our habitual responses to physical and emotional pain.  Also exploring any connections there may be.  By continually practicing this awareness we condition the ability to respond instead of react to stressful circumstances internally.

 

Be Aware of being stuck, blocking, numbing and shutting off to the moment when it happens this week.

Be Aware of automatic habitual stress reactions and behaviors during the week, without trying to change them.

 

Self Guided Body Scan: Every other day  

Sitting Meditation: Physical, emotional and breath Awareness, Every other day

 

Class V: Mindfulness-Mediated Stress Responses

Awareness of being "stuck" in one's life

Responding instead of Reacting

Awareness and highlighting our conditioned patterns encountered in highly demanding situations in which one finds they're reacting with fight, flight or freeze.

Halfway point of the program, in class 5 we emphasize the capacity to adapt more rapidly and effectively to everyday challenges and stressors.  Strategies through mindful practice ( AOB sitting meditation, body scan, mindful hatha yoga, mindful walking etc.) progressively and cumulatively continue to grow the capacity to attend more precisely to a variety of previously conditioned physical and mental perceptions.

 

Responding instead of reacting by using mindful awareness to give us space between our conditioned

reactions.

 

Stop, step back and see more clearly/objectively and then be in a better position to to make informed choices in various situations.

Awareness of being stuck in one's life or in particular situations in one's life, and investigation/acceptance of the way people often cope including: numbing, denial, passive-aggressiveness, suppression of feelings, substance dependency, thoughts of suicide etc.

Recognizing and honoring the fact that these coping methods may have been protective and supported survival at the time of conditioning, but now they've become limiting.

Home Practice:  Here we begin to see that the relationship we have with stressful situations can actually change.  The possibility that something that gives us the sensation of stress may be viewed with a hint of opportunity for growth, instead of just fear and tension.  And these are the moments where self evolution can transpire by just having the awareness of the way the particular situation makes us feel.

Fill Out Difficult communications Calendar

Bring awareness to moments of reacting and explore options for responding with greater mindfulness, spaciousness, and creativity in formal meditation practice and in everyday life.  Remember that the breath is an anchor to the present moment, a break from conditioned reactions,a doorway to heightened awareness of those tendencies, a break from mental chatter

Self Guided Body Scan: Every other day  

Sitting Meditation: Physical, emotional and breath Awareness, Every other day

Class VI: Stressful Communications

No less than the trees and stars, you have a right to be here

The Way we Treat the world, is the way we treat ourselves

Stressful communications; knowing your feelings; expressing your feelings accurately; developing a greater awareness of interpersonal communication patterns and your own barriers.

Based on the embodiment of the skills we have been developing through the entire program, growing our capacity to self-regulate and broaden inner resources for developing health enhancing attitudes and behaviors in practical daily life applications.

The focus of this strategy building class is the application of previously learned mindfulness/MBSR skills and methods in acute communication and interpersonal settings.  A variety of communication styles are examined both didactically and experientially, along with strategies for more effective and creative interpersonal communication.

All instructional processes emphasize being more flexible in conditions of chronic and acute stress.

By just being aware of our conditioned reactions, body posture, tone of voice etc, we can begin to create space in between our reactive defenses, offering the opportunity to be more flexible and creative with our response.

Continuing to condition the capacity of remaining aware and seeking balance even in stressful interpersonal moments.

Home Practice : As we apply mindfulness and the MBSR techniques from the class to our relationships we can begin to experience greater well-being through our stressful interpersonal interactions.  Instead of meeting these situations with resistance or numbing, in time they may actually lead to opportunities for internal growth and care.

Continue with Stressful Communications Calendar: Apply as needed to patterned behaviors and interactions that need heightened awareness and present mindedness

Alternate Sitting Meditation with And Body Scan: Daily 15-45 min

Class VII: Diet; How What We Take In Affects Us

From Social Media to Food

Integrating Mindfulness Into Everyday Life

Applying mindfulness to the sensory patterns we have about food and any other sensory experiences in our day.  Noticing patterns that are self-nourishing verses self-destructive.  

Awareness of impulses;

This includes investigating choices around technology and electronics, cell phones, internet, and all media.

May choose to look choices around time, priorities and values.  Dissecting what is calling to us in the moment when we have an urge or impulse.  Is our response nourishing and sustainable or do they leave us feeling more lost or confused.  

Exploring the idea that maybe the body is calling for something else when these impulses arise, and our current coping mechanisms don't serve us anymore.

Home Practice:  Here we begin to incorporate mindfulness into all parts of our lives.  Maybe areas we may not necessarily deem stressful.

Educating ourselves on what we are taking in from the foods we eat and how this can affect our mood.  From nutrition labels to water intake.

Mindful Eating

Bring awareness to moments of reacting and explore options for responding with greater mindfulness, spaciousness, and creativity in formal meditation practice and in everyday life.  Remember that the breath is an anchor to the present moment, a break from conditioned reactions,a doorway to heightened awareness of those tendencies, a break from mental chatter

Self Guided Body Scan: Every other day  

Sitting Meditation: Physical, emotional and breath Awareness, Every other day

Class VII: Diet; How What We Take In Affects Us

From Social Media to Food

Integrating Mindfulness Into Everyday Life

Applying mindfulness to the sensory patterns we have about food and any other sensory experiences in our day.  Noticing patterns that are self-nourishing verses self-destructive.  

Awareness of impulses;

This includes investigating choices around technology and electronics, cell phones, internet, and all media.

May choose to look choices around time, priorities and values.  Dissecting what is calling to us in the moment when we have an urge or impulse.  Is our response nourishing and sustainable or do they leave us feeling more lost or confused.  

Exploring the idea that maybe the body is calling for something else when these impulses arise, and our current coping mechanisms don't serve us anymore.

Home Practice:  Here we begin to incorporate mindfulness into all parts of our lives.  Maybe areas we may not necessarily deem stressful.

Educating ourselves on what we are taking in from the foods we eat and how this can affect our mood.  From nutrition labels to water intake.

Mindful Eating

Bring awareness to moments of reacting and explore options for responding with greater mindfulness, spaciousness, and creativity in formal meditation practice and in everyday life.  Remember that the breath is an anchor to the present moment, a break from conditioned reactions,a doorway to heightened awareness of those tendencies, a break from mental chatter

Self Guided Body Scan: Every other day  

Sitting Meditation: Physical, emotional and breath Awareness, Every other day

Class VIII: Keeping Up Momentum

Time to reflect...
This brings us to the final week of the course, and if you have been watching the videos, reading the recommended material, and doing the practices, you have accomplished a lot! As a result of your dedicated learning and practice, it's likely that there have been some changes in you since you began, so now might be a good time to ask: What changes have you noticed since you began the course? The changes may be different than you expected and they might not be monumental. They could include subtle shifts, such as discovering that you are sometimes able to find space in the middle of a busy day, or that you are a little more resilient in encounters with others, or you're just a little kinder to yourself in difficult situations. It's often the subtle changes that are actually most profound, because they indicate learning that has been integrated, that they come from the inside-out rather than top-down.

617-866-0810

©2019 by Maybe It's Mindfulness.com