Have you heard of the ways meditation can improve your day? Join us every Wednesday at 6pm for one of our weekly meditation classes: Finding Stillness Through Meditation with Jena Morrison, PhD.
This class is a 20-minute guided meditation done in the style of Jon Kabat-Zinn’s MBSR meditation (mindfulness-based stress relief). It’s perfect for anyone wishing to start a meditation practice or for a more experienced practitioner to revive their existing practice.
Here is a bit more about this special meditation class from Jena!
What has been one of your favorite moments during this class?
One of my favorite moments during class is when everyone is reluctant to leave after the class has finished. The lingering, slow-moving, relaxed movement is the embodiment of what it means to be mindful. And, it’s exciting to see students who have attended a session return the following week with a friend or family member in town. They’re so excited to share this feeling of mindfulness with others that they care about.
What first brought you to the practice?
I’d been curious about meditation for a while, but it was finally my own anxiety that led me to my practice. Finding some quiet for my monkey mind has been a blessing. And, while I still struggle with my own practice, the struggle is a lesson in itself. The brain is like a muscle – you just need to continue to work it out to see the results.
How do you think meditation benefits the world today?
Mindfulness is immensely useful. Research shows that it helps with mental clarity and focus, handling strong emotions, treating mental illness, and improving memory. It also improves your relationships with those around you by allowing you to respond rather than react to a situation. Some research even shows that it grows grey matter in your brain! My personal research links mindfulness to overcoming the effects of stereotypes in society and improving test grades. These are just a few of the things a regular meditation practice can do. But, my favorite is improving your quality of sleep. I find that I sleep a great deal better and fall asleep faster when I maintain a regular practice.
How has PYR impacted you and your life?
I first found PYR back in October of 2014. Jim Temple used to lead meditation during the days there and suggested I check it out. That December I finally got brave enough to try a yoga class. I went to Sarah Humphries’ Saturday morning EnJoy yoga and have been hooked ever since! I love that PYR welcomes everyone from all stages and backgrounds of life and has such a deep appreciation for both diversity and service to others. And, PYR emphasizes the importance of self-care. This really appeals to me as both a sociologist and a psychologist. It’s also important to me to serve others in some fashion, and PYR gives me the opportunity to do so. I love the chance to pay it forward by providing meditation to others at the same place where I first learned to practice.