Mindfulness is living in the now. It is about intentionally paying attention, with purpose, in the present moment. It is being engaged with whatever is happening around you and within you with an attitude of curiosity, acceptance and self-kindness to whatever is experienced, rather than habitual patterns of judgment and criticism.
Mindfulness is meeting our experiences consciously, rather than automatically. It offers an alternative to allowing our deep-seated automatic habits or “default modes” of behaviour to govern our lives. We learn to observe our experience with an attitude of self-empathy that allows us to clearly perceive what is already here – anxiety, self-doubt, physical pain. When we make decisions from this place, we often feel clearer. Wisdom can arise naturally when we are connected to, and fully embrace, our real and complete experience, instead of fretting about how to deal with it. We learn to let life flow through us.
I am a Qualified Teacher of Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), having been professionally trained at the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Healthcare and Society, University of Massachusetts Medical School. I have also received professional certification for the training “Soigner en pleine conscience” from the Institute de Pleine Conscience Appliquée Montreal in the tradition of Thich Nhat Hanh, training recognized by the Médecins Francophone du Canada.
I have cultivated a meditation and yoga practice for 14 years and have attended several silent long retreats under the guidance of well-known Mindfulness teachers including Jon Kabat-Zinn, Pascal Auclair, S.N. Goenka and others. I have a strong commitment to my daily mindfulness practice.
My formal education and initial career experience was in the field of Biomedical Engineering; my keen and abiding interest in compassionate healthcare is what led me to become a Complementary Therapist focused on techniques for providing deep relaxation and stress reduction for patients in need. As well, my experience working in demanding and high pressure corporate environments has provided me with ample opportunity to experience the deleterious effects of stress, and to fully appreciate the vital need to counter-balance its impacts.
My extensive formal training and daily practice in Mindfulness has afforded me a deep understanding of its far-reaching benefits and subtle nuances; I am eager to share this knowledge and insight. I have honed my abilities through extensive experience teaching Mindfulness to oncology patients at the Cedars Cancer Center at the McGill University Health Center, and to the general public at various health care centers.