Updated: Sep 30, 2019
by Laura Martin, LCSW
I'm so gratified to offer mindfulness classes in a yoga studio that in every way endeavors to promote respect, love, and accessibility in a marketing world that can often fail to include people who don’t look a certain way. I ventured out to start my own business the same time Unfold opened its doors, and they opened their doors to me. So I have a deep appreciation for this relationship that has been so supportive, and to everyone who comes through the doors. The people at Unfold endeavor to live their mission of unconditional welcoming. I see that in their practices, and I feel that in our relationship.
I get to teach the 8-week course, Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction here. MBSR itself has been taught widely for over 40 years, all over the world, and is at the epicenter of the secular mindfulness movement. There’s another aspect of relationship here: One of the ways that MBSR fits best at unfold is its primary focus, which is giving us back our relationship to our own bodies, hearts, and minds, or coming back to our senses. As the founder of MBSR, Jon Kabat-Zinn says, “There is more right with you than there is wrong with you.” While MBSR can be challenging, at every step, there is encouragement to meet our edges without pushing or striving. There is an open invitation to practice acceptance, patience, and appreciation for what often seems like “the full catastrophe” of life.
Children, animals, and even plants thrive with our gentle, kind attention. We are no different. We can re-create a relationship with our whole selves that is infused with this gentle, kind attention. This is a way of embodying respect and, yes, even unconditional welcoming in the relationship with ourselves. We can embody peace in this way.
I’m as much a learner as a teacher in every class, and am lucky to get to practice here, in a place of such appreciation, and respect. I am looking forward to sharing more in the relationship with everyone who comes to practice here. You, too, make it what it is.