Stress Reduction through Mindfulness

Have you ever driven somewhere and remembered nothing about how you arrived there?  Or finished a carton of French fries only to grab another and not realized the box was empty? These are experiences of “mindlessness”.

What is MindFULness? It’s the practice of experiencing the present moment, in a non-judgmental way, without trying to change it.  So right now, check in with yourself. Are you reading this or are you thinking about what you will be doing 5 minutes from now? When I began my mindfulness meditation journey, I soon realized during much of my day my thoughts were lingering over the past, dreaming of the future, or just repeating the same thought over and over.

I’ll be honest, in the beginning – mindfulness meditation was challenging for me.  I found every excuse not to make space for it in my life.  But in time, I made an internal connection to an awareness level I had never experienced before.  And that new level of awareness… is what draws me back every day to my mindfulness practice.

Is Mindfulness Meditation for you?

I believe we are all capable of practicing meditation.  If you are willing to explore, laugh, begin, begin again, breathe, quiet down, listen, be and learn — your internal world awaits your arrival. Really.

While I have tried different approaches to meditation over the years, Susie brought new perspective to my practice.  She made it fun, nonjudgmental, and approachable.  I especially appreciated that Susie introduced several options for bringing mindfulness to every day living and alternatives to sitting when that just isn’t right for you at that moment (e.g., walking meditation, mindful eating).  Susie is a wonderful patient resource, and we’re lucky to have her in Evanston’s healing community!”  - Jenny W., Evanston, IL

Susan provides a safe, comfortable and compassionate environment for learning mindfulness meditation and stress reduction techniques.  She embodies the mindfulness she teaches!” - M.M. Chicago, IL

Susan’s voice, delivery, and knowledge of mindfulness made the experience extremely informational and practical.” -  J.W., Libertyville, IL

How We Can Work Together

I deeply enjoy sitting with individuals and groups who have a desire to explore mindfulness meditation.  I will assist you in establishing or re-energizing an existing practice.  You’ll experience creating your own comfortable posture.  There will be sitting, walking, lying down, and movement opportunities to see how you best connect to mindfulness.  You will get to know yourself at a deeper level as an individual.  We’ll find out what’s important to you and what your vision for establishing a mindfulness practice may look like.  You will also learn simple ways to cope with stress and chronic pain.

Benefits:

  • Increase ability to concentrate and focus
  • Calmly learn to interrupt repetitive thought patterns
  • Complimentary tool for reducing stress, anxiety, depression and chronic pain
  • Expand ability to see situations more clearly
  • Lower heart rate and blood pressure
  • A deeper sense of empathy for self and others

Several years ago I was fortunate enough to cross paths with a course entitled Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR). MBSR is the most common mindfulness meditation approach used in health care settings.  Developed by Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn at the University of Massachusetts in the late 1970’s, MBSR was applied in a behavioral medicine setting for populations with a wide range of chronic pain and stress related disorders.  Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn, PhD., is founding Executive Director of the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. He is also the founding Director of its renowned Stress Reduction Clinic and Professor of Medicine emeritus at the University of Massachusetts Medical School.

In January 2012 I had the honor of participating in the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction in Mind-Body Medicine (MBSR) Professional Training, taught by Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn & Executive Director of the Center for Mindfulness, Saki Santorelli, EdD, MA.  Saki has been the Director of the renowned Stress Reduction Clinic since 1996 and has made pioneering advances in Mind-Body and Integrative Medicine, through the clinical application of meditation and mindfulness in contemporary medical and health care settings. I am so grateful to have experienced their unprecedented level of integrity, grace, humor, wisdom, understanding and support.

For further information about individual sessions and upcoming group classes contact Susan at 773-710-9210 or contact me here.