I was an anxious, intense, insomniac when I was 11. I looked around the world, observing people push and pull at each other, attempting to maintain fleeting happiness. I wanted to figure it all out, but gosh was that overwhelming! Thank goodness a kind doctor taught me simple meditation techniques to relax my body and mind. I began to feel relief from anxiety, was able to “let go” of obsessive thoughts more easily and enjoyed normal sleep again.
As I matured, my desire to understand and be of service to people grew, (with a much less perfectionistic desire to “figure it all out!”) I love people – their colorful, gritty, and oh so beautiful selves. I wanted to be a psychotherapist and nothing else.
After working as a counselor for a few years, it dawned on me (duh!) that meditation might be helpful to my clients, as it had been for me. I began teaching my clients but in often stumbling and indirect ways. I sought out more and more explicit education about integrating mindfulness into psychotherapy. I earned a Certificate from the Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy, and shortly thereafter found Shinzen Young, and the Unified Mindfulness system. THAT was what I needed – the precision and clarity around what you’re actually doing, and why, when you’re meditating. My own meditation practice flourished and I was much better equipped to offer personalized, practical techniques to my clients.
I founded a group practice, Chicago Mindful Psychotherapy, teaching and learning more and more about integrating meditation into the process of psychological healing. I sold that practice and moved to Florida in 2020, but this continues to be my passion today: Accompanying each person (client) through joys, pains, and insights into themselves, as we discover together how to live in this world with grace, grit, and gratitude. Mindfulness is a warm, enveloping light in this process, and I can’t imagine being a therapist, or a person, without this orientation/skill/process.
I currently have a private practice, Mindful Life Full, where I see psychotherapy clients and provide training to mental health clinicians on the applications of mindfulness. If I can be of service to you, please reach out! And I’m so excited for you that you’ve discovered this life-changing skillset called mindfulness.