There is so much research these days on the benefits of Mindfulness and Yoga – I do my best to keep up myself, but usually forget to share. Here’s a link to a nice short article a friend sent me on how even 8 weeks of Mindfulness benefits the brain.
I’ll put something up soon about Yoga – lots of studies show that Yoga practice affects the brain in much the same ways as Mindfulness …enjoy!
Do you often give yourself a hard time? Have you a very active inner critic?
Can you imagine what it would be like to be your own best friend?
Have you grown to tolerate tiredness and minor aches and pains?
What might it be like to recover a sense of ‘firing on all cylinders’?
Do you sometimes feel overwhelmed by what life throws at you?
Would you like to explore ways back to your own natural resilience and passion for life?
If you can relate to any of the above, you just might be interested in….
A one-day workshop with Mairéad Flynn & Mairéad Heaney
- Reflecting on aspects of Body and Emotions
- Understanding & valuing compassionate presence to self
- Exploring practices which help us integrate mindful compassion in daily life (this will include some gentle movement)
The workshop will be offered at 2 venues:
August 22nd: Wellington Hall, St. Mary’s Rd., Dundalk
August 29th: The Wetlands Centre, Ballybay.
Times: 10am – 5pm
Please bring along a lunch to suit your own taste!
Tea/ Coffee breaks will be catered for.
Booking: Closing date is August 15th
If you have any questions at all, please don’t hesitate to contact one of us…
CONTACT: firstname.lastname@example.org /086 8120332
email@example.com / 087 6889822
Both Mairéads are experienced Mindfulness Teachers alongside having other professional qualifications:
Mairead Flynn in Yoga and Stress Management; Mairéad Heaney in Psychotherapy.
They offer regular themed workshops as on-going nourishment and support for those who have completed the 8 week MBSR. However they welcome anyone who wishes to explore the possibilities of mindfulness for personal growth and wellbeing.
Here’s an email I send out to all on my mailing list: economy of effort, I’m hoping it will double as a post! Here goes…
Summer greetings to all!
And yes it is summer – according to Wet Eireann (Oliver Callan’s joke, not mine!) this is officially the first day of summer….
Despite the wind and rain, I hope you are enjoying a pleasant bank holiday…doing something relaxing and nourishing to recharge the batteries for the week ahead.
And speaking of relaxing, nourishing and recharging batteries, I’m happy to flag some very nourishing events coming up in June – some regular nourishment and something exciting and new – read on!
1. Some regular nourishment:
ONE DAY MINDFULNESS RETREAT
in The Wetlands Centre, Ballybay on Saturday 13 June, 10am to 4pm
As the current MBSR group finish their 8-week course, all of you who have done MBSR are welcome to join us. I’m aware that last time there were so many takers, I had to turn some of you away! I am so sorry about that…and while I’m not expecting the same demand this time, it’s not a bad idea to let me know in good time if you want to join.
Booking: You can reply to this email, or contact me on 086 8120332.
Cost: if you have done MBSR and never got to do the one-day retreat, then you are entitled to this and there’s no fee.
If you’re coming back to join us for a refresher day, you are most welcome – I suggest that you contribute €10
What to bring: As many of you know from before, I ask everyone to bring something simple for lunch and also a Yoga mat and blanket – whatever you need to be comfortable for some very gentle mindful movement and Body Scan.
These days are a great opportunity to link in again with the nourishment of mindfulness practice and with like-minded friends – hope to see lots of you there!
2. Some new and very exciting nourishment:
SUMMER SOLSTICE HOLISTIC RETREAT
also in The Wetlands Centre, Ballybay on the summer solstice weekend – Sat 20 and Sun 21 June
I’m delighted to co-host this very special event with Margaret Palmer (Herbalist) and Claire Clerkin (Nutritional Therapist). The three of us got together to see if we can pool our varied expertise and design some truly holistic events to nourish body, mind and spirit – and this is our first offering….
There’ll be herbal walks, cookery demonstrations, mindful walking; we’ll get to eat the deliciously healthy lunches prepared under Claire’s guidance; you’ll take away a nourishing herbal body lotion that Margaret helps us create; there’ll be talks on how to use food and herbs to maintain health and energy; and each day will start with some gentle Yoga and end with a short Mindfulness practice. .
The theme on Saturday will be ‘relax and detox’ and on Sunday ‘recharge and energize’.
You’ll find all the details on our website: http://summersolsticeevent.weebly.com/
and Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/solsticeholisticweekend
Booking is essential: You can book through the website (there’s a link to Eventbrite), or simply give one of us a call.
3. Further into the summer:
If you can’t make either of the above, don’t worry there will be some further workshops later in July and August…
– a body/mind approach to reduce the symptoms of trauma and accumulated stress
Yoga and Mindfulness
– learning to inhabit the body whether moving or still is for many the best way towards mindful presence
– learning how important it is to gently take care of yourself as you do your best to negotiate what challenges life presents
I’ll be sending more details of these soon…
4. And finally – some on-going nourishment:
As you can see from the above, I love working with groups and most of what I do can be very effectively taught in groups – in fact group interaction and support often adds to our experience and learning. It can be amazingly consoling and encouraging to meet others who are negotiating life experiences which are similar to our own…
However, there are times for all of us, when we could do with more focused and individual support.
Based on the training I have been doing in Somatic Experiencing (to finish in October) I see many of the issues we struggle with (problems with sleep, digestion, chronic pain, anxiety, fatigue, low mood) as reflections of a nervous system out of sync, due to trauma and accumulated stress. ‘Nervous system dysregulation’ is the buzz phrase of the leaders in trauma healing; and the symptoms of accumulated stress are often very similar to those of trauma.
If your nervous system is feeling somewhat frazzled (and if it is, you’ll know what I mean!) you might consider that a few individual sessions could help restore balance and stability in your system.
Currently I see people for one-to-one Yoga, Mindfulness, Reflexology and Stress Reduction – These are all very effective ways to restore nervous system regulation. While they can each be learned in a class situation (all except Reflexology) it can sometimes be more effective to learn exactly what you need to learn and to have individual support/guidance as you make your own journey back towards balance and resilience.
If you think you might benefit from some one-to-one sessions, do give me a ring and we can explore together what might work best for you.
Tel: 086 8120332
I think that’s it for now – the sun is shining at the moment, but I’m not entirely convinced that summer has set in – let’s see what Wet Eireann has to say later! But whatever the outside weather I do hope that your internal weather is pleasant, and that whatever life is presenting you are handling it with grace and resilience… and that your mindfulness skills are coming to your aid!
If you have queries about any of the above, I’d love to hear from you…
With warm wishes,
It’s been so long since any activity here!
But at last there’s lots of new stuff on the horizon…
I’ll be posting fuller details over the next few days/weeks, but can’t wait to flag up what’s coming down the line – strange that I haven’t put anything up since January, and now I can’t wait! I have to admit I am a little bit excited about what’s on the way, so here it is……
First of all, I always love starting new MBSR courses – every group is so different and even thought more or less the same material is covered, it always seems new, thanks to the uniqueness of each participant…
MINDFULNESS BASED STRESS REDUCTION (MBSR)
new 8-week courses starting
Monaghan Wellness Centre on Mon 22 Sept
Free Information Session ∼ Mon 15 Sept at 7pm
Cavan Crystal Hotel on Thurs 25 September
Free Information Session ∼ Thurs 18 Sept at 7pm
for full details and Registration Details, download Mindfulness Information – Sept 2014
Next…I am so happy to be doing a number of one-day workshops this term with my friend and fellow mindfulness teacher, Mairead Heaney – some of you might have met Mairead before. Very conscious of the value of follow up and on-going support for people who have already done MBSR, we are offering a number of themed workshops in venues which might suit folks who have done MBSR either in Monaghan, Cavan or Dundalk. For starters…
Mindfulness and the Body
The Magnet, Dundalk on Saturday 20 September
Ballybay Wetlands Centre on Saturday 27 September
Both will run from 10am to 4pm
Much more detail will be posted very soon
Mindfulness and the Emotions
Dundalk on Sat 18 October (venue to be confirmed)
Ballybay Wetlands Centre on Sat 25 October
Both will run from 10am to 4pm
Much more detail soon, but you might want to pencil in….
And yet further excitement –
From Stress to Resilience, reducing stress, restoring balance, rediscovering pleasure!
A new course I’m working on based the latest research findings regarding the human nervous system and how it’s wired to handle stress. Some of you may know I have been studying Somatic Experiencing over the last 2 years. Somatic Experiencing is a body-based approach to healing trauma and accumulated stress. Over the last 30+ years, I have worked with many approaches to manage and reduce stress but somehow Somatic Experiencing is bringing all this experience and learning together. It is very exciting for me to put this material together (with the help of a mentor on the Somatic Experiencing faculty)…here’s a bit of blurb about what the course will entail…more to follow
A 6 week body-mind journey to combine the practice of Yoga and Mindfulness with the latest research findings on the human stress responses.
You will learn:
How accumulated stress responses get locked into the body
How many physical, mental and emotional problems are caused by nervous system dysregulation
How to use yoga, mindfulness and a range of easy, enjoyable awareness exercises to work directly with the body and restore nervous system regulation
How presence and pleasure and key to restoring inner balance
A blend of fascinating input and nourishing practice, the course aims to be informative, entertaining and deeply encouraging – a genuine step towards living with greater ease and resilience in our pretty crazy world!
Free Information Session: Wednesday 17 September
Course Begins: Wednesday 24 September ~ 6 Wednesdays, 7 to 9pm
Venue: Monaghan Wellness Centre
More to come on all of these – so do watch this space!
My friends and family know that I have a penchant for starting new blogs but I’m not all that good at maintaining or adding content. I’ve done it again – started a new blog/website the other day called Practising Presence.
Over the holidays I had recorded a short practice called ‘Practising Presence’ – sensing into the body, breath and senses – simply being present to life unfolding moment by moment. I had in mind to put this up on-line as a taster practice for those who are exploring Mindfulness Meditation for the first time, and also for experienced meditators who want to do a short guided practice once in a while. Since this site can’t upload audio files I decided to start up a new one which does. Then I realised that because I have upgraded my new WordPress site to carry audio – this one can now do so as well – it seems the one upgrade applies to all my WordPress territories – I don’t really understand, but won’t complain! You can’t possibly be interested in my tentative explorations into cyberspace – suffice it to say that I may begin to use the Practising Presence for further practice material,both audio and written, and continue to use this site for occasional reflective pieces and for news of up-coming courses and events. We’ll see…
The thing about Mindfulness Meditation is that we’re not trying to achieve any special state – we’re not going after anything esoteric or sublime. The aim is just to be here – present to things exactly as they are. You could say that rather than having an ‘out of the body’ experience, we’re actually trying to be present right here in the body! You might think that you already live in your body – watch out for a later post on Automatic Pilot….
I hope you take time to listen to this short practice – it’s home made, so not perfect quality – but bear with me, I hope to get around eventually to making more professional recordings. Meanwhile, a simple practice like this is a very good way to not only practice formally but also to begin creating the habit of being there ‘practising presence’ wherever you are. enjoy!
Please click here for Practising Presence, a 20 minute practice of just being wherever you are…