MBSR

“As a fellow at the University of Arizona’s Andrew Weil Center for Integrative Medicine, I learned a bit about MBSR™ and the profound effect mindfulness can have on health and healing but never had the opportunity to experience the class itself. As 19 others and myself gathered for our first class there was a clear sense of anxiety in the air. “Is this right for me?”, “I feel so anxious.”, “How can I sit quietly for 20 minutes?”, “Will this really impact my life?” Fast-forward 8 weeks and the feelings are totally different. There is a palpable sense of collective calm and a completely different perspective on the true meaning of living. No longer are the people in the class constrained by their self-defeating thoughts and beliefs. They now exude a sense of calm, peace and control of their lives. They now understand how to turn stress from a threat to their lives into a challenge to be embraced. This course is a must for anyone who wishes to reframe how he or she thinks about themselves as well as the world around them. Truly life changing.”
– Dr. Andrew Nish, Medical Director of the John Stoddard Cancer Center (Winter 2020 MBSR™ graduate)

MBSR Live Online: Fall 2020 registration is open!

Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Des Moines, Iowa

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“I took the MBSR 8-week course with Allison and it really was a life changing experience. Since taking the course, I’ve been able to get off my anxiety medication as well as sleep medication. Allison is a wonderful teacher/guide and I would highly recommend her course to anyone struggling with coping with stress and anxiety.”
– I.S. (Spring 2018 graduate)
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“Out of all the spiritual classes I have taken, I’ve never felt like my time and money was more well spent on this class! Thank you!” – B.H. (Summer 2018 participant)
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“I am a multiple myeloma patient. Multiple myeloma is a blood cancer that affects the bone marrow. Living with cancer is never easy. MBSR provides tools to cope with the new reality of life with cancer. MBSR helped me establish a personal practice of mindfulness, meditation and yoga to deal with the cancer and its treatment. The mindfulness and meditation helped reduce the anxiety and pain associated with cancer. The gentle yoga helped me restore my body from the side effects of treatment.” – B.K. (Summer 2019 graduate)

Discover the healing power of mindfulness from the comfort of your own home or office, meeting virtually via the Zoom classroom. Learn to mitigate stress and regulate emotion. MBSR is being offered online – Register now, space is limited.

Required Orientation: Tuesday, September 15, 2020  9:00-10:30AM
Class Dates & Times: Tuesdays: (Sept 22, 29, Oct 6, 13, 20, 27, Nov 3, 10)  9:00-11:30AM
Day of Mindfulness Retreat: If social distancing is lifted: Saturday, October 24, 2020  9:00AM–3:00PM. If social distancing is still enforced: 9:00AM-1:00PM on Zoom

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Contact me with questions

Although stress is at the cause of many physical illnesses and psychological disorders, it is not often diagnosed or treated at the root level. There are very few resources that effectively treat stress as a condition. MBSR™ is designed to recognize and put to use our inner psychological resources to respond to toxic stress, increase stress hardiness, focus, creativity, regulate emotions, and allow a greater sense of self-care and well-being.

Have you ever found yourself in these situations…

• Habitually driven your car halfway to work when you all of a sudden realized that you meant to head in a completely different direction to run errands or go to a friend’s house?

• Felt that there is more to life than continually checking off things on your never-ending “to do” list and just going through the motions?

• Noticed that you tend to overreact to strong, negative thoughts, emotions and situations, almost a knee jerk reaction that causes strain on relationships to the people that are closest to you? Do you feel or wish that there would be more margin between the stressor and your being able to respond to stressful situations?

• Deal with chronic pain that traditional medicine has not been able to completely take care of?

READ: “3 Tips to Starting a Mindfulness Meditation Practice”

Living with stress is part of being human. As long as we’re breathing, we’ll always have everyday challenges. As long as we respond to stressors in our lives in a healthy way, our bodies remain in a calm and balanced state. A very intricate and amazing reaction happens within the body in response to stress, also widely known as “fight or flight.” In most cases it keeps us safe from harm. However, when the Stress Response Cycle gets out of whack and becomes a chronic condition, this can do a great deal of damage to our bodies and make us much more prone to illness, high blood pressure, and anxiety. It’s not the stress itself that is the problem, it’s how we deal with it that matters.

Why do people take this course?
Some of the major reasons why people take the MBSR course is job, school or family stress, chronic pain, sleeplessness, mild depression and anxiety, anger issues, or loss of a loved one. MBSR is also for someone who is committed to integrating a regular personal meditation practice into their life and seeking greater overall health and well-being.

 

A Glimpse at the Course Schedule…
MBSR course is an 8-week long experiential, educational program. While it’s not therapy, it can be quite healing and therapeutic. As an instructor, I see myself as a “compassionate companion” helping to create the time and space needed for growth and healing. We see ourselves and others as already whole and complete, not broken, or needing to be “fixed” per se. As the founder of this program says, “As long as you’re breathing, there’s more right with you than wrong, no matter what you’re facing in this moment.”

Participants meet for approximately 2 hours, once a week in a supportive, discussion-based small group setting with daily home practices and assignments on their own. This unique course’s foundation relies on meditation as a means to being in better relation to stress and learning new ways to deal more skillfully when difficulty arises in our lives. Around the 6th week, there is a day-long, (approximately 6 hours) silent retreat to give participants the chance to deepen the experience of mindfulness and meditation.

Week 1-3: Designed to become more familiar with the body, concentrating, and focusing the mind and stabilizing nervous system.
Week 4-6: Explore the physiology and psychology of stress and our habitual reactivity more deeply. How stress affects the mind and body.
Week 7: Strengthening your practice with self-compassion.
Week 8: Review. How to maintain, deepen and integrate the practice into your life.

As a participant, you can expect:

  • Group experiential learning
  • Guided instruction in mindfulness meditation practices
  • Gentle stretching and basic mindful hatha yoga
  • Group discussions focusing on enhancing awareness in everyday life
  • Daily home meditation practice and some homework assignments
  • Home practice materials and workbook

 

I’m a certified MBSR Instructor through the UMass Medical School Center for Mindfulness and the Mindfulness Center at Brown University.
PTI completion-letter  and  Practicum Completion Letter