On 27 October 2018, Erin was invited to Autodesk Singapore's Out of the Building initiative, where she gave an introduction to the importance of body awareness in practicing mindfulness. We discussed how we are mostly "living from the neck up" and the importance of grounding ourselves to the body in times of stress. Also present was Tiffany Wee from Mind Body Slim who shared on mindful eating!
You are invited!
Organized by Dot Connections Growth Centre and partnered with The Institute of Mind Humanities of Wonkwang University, the Mind and Mindfulness Symposium 2017 strives to provide participants with greater insights to our mind and the learning of mindfulness through the sharing of knowledge by specially-invited guest speakers, as well as the opportunity to experience mindfulness through bite-size practices throughout the event!
WHAT: The Mind and Mindfulness Symposium
WHEN: Saturday 6 August 2017, 10 am - 4 pm
WHERE: Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum, 288 South Bridge Road, Singapore 058840
SPEAKERS & TOPICS:
Professor Jang Jin Yang, Wonkwang University, The Institute of Mind Humanities
Title: Daily Life Practice and Mindfulness - A Comparative Study Across Schools of Mindfulness
Professor Baek Hyeongi, Wonkwang University, The Institute of Mind Humanities
Title: Implementation of Mind Humanities Related Journals Applications Using Google Maps
Dr. Jeffrey Po, Dot Connections Growth Centre
Title: Engaging Goal-Oriented Mindfulness Meditation Skills to Enhance Healthy Workplace Environment
Ms Jacqueline Leong, Dot Connections Growth Centre
Title: Don't Sweat Over Mindfulness
Do you live or work around the Aljunied vicinity?
This once-a-month session hosted by Dot Connections Growth Centre 圆点心宁中心 welcomes all residents and working adults around the vicinity to take a break during the lunch hour and come together for a group mindfulness practice.
The first half of the session will be dedicated to basic mindfulness practices guided by a facilitator (Mindfulness Coach Erin Lee) in English, followed by Q&A, sharing or mingling (it is okay to leave after practice). No prior experience or knowledge about mindfulness is required to participate. Free entry!
DATE: Thursday 30 March 2017
TIME: 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
VENUE: Dot Connections Growth Centre, Block 46 Sims Place, #01-197, Singapore 380046. (Nearest MRT: Aljunied)
To register, please Call / SMS / WhatsApp @ 85014365
We look forward to practicing with you!
On 15 February 2017, Mindfulness Coach Erin Lee was invited to conduct a half-day mindfulness workshop for the executives at Attorney-General's Chambers as part of their learning week.
We learned about mindfulness, how it benefits us personally and at work, engaged in some foundational mindfulness practices, and inquired into our experiences to gain insight into our lives.
Thank you for practicing mindfulness with me. May you all shine with happiness!
Mindful Moments is starting a monthly practice session open to all who are interested in practicing mindfulness in a group, whether or not you have any experience in mindfulness.
Each session will be led by Erin or a guest mindfulness practitioner / teacher, and will focus on different mindfulness practices or themes. Each practice session will last 30 - 45 minutes, after which you may wish to have a chat with Erin about mindfulness or mingle with one another.
Date: Thursday 16 February 2017
Time: 7 PM - 8 PM
Venue: 190 Clemenceau Ave, Singapore Shopping Centre #04-10, Meeting Room 4, S(239924)
Fee: Free Entrance
Other Details: Chairs will be provided. You may also wish to sit on the floor (carpeted).
Simply email Erin at email@example.com to indicate the date you're joining!
So we are nearing the end of 2016, and about to welcome a brand new year ahead. Have you set your New Year Resolutions yet?
As an advocate of mindfulness as a way of life, I invite you to incorporate mindfulness as a part of your New Year Resolutions. You might want to commit to doing one thing mindfully per day, or establish a more routine mindfulness practice. You might even want to get yourself formally trained in mindfulness, if you have been toying with the idea for some time. Perhaps you already have a New Year Resolution in mind, and you could be more mindful about achieving or sticking with it.
Here are some simple suggestions on how you can have a more mindful year ahead:
Doing one thing mindfully everyday: this could be any activity within your daily routine, such as brushing your teeth, locking your apartment door (we know how absent-minded we can be about this!), drinking your first glass of water or first cup of coffee in the morning, waiting for the bus, a household chore like washing the dishes - the possibilities are endless!
When mindfully doing that one thing you've chosen, you are essentially paying attention to what you're doing as you're doing it; multi-tasking is a big no-no in mindfulness practice, so don't for example drink your coffee and read the news at the same time. As you pay attention, notice the details using your five senses - see the colors and shapes with your eyes, hear the sounds with your ears, smell the scents with your nose, taste with your tongue, and feel textures and sensations with your hands and skin. When we open up our senses to what we're doing, we stay focused and the mind settles more easily into the present moment by moment.
Establishing a more routine practice: Those of us who have had training or experience in mindfulness would probably know that one of the most challenging aspects of mindfulness is keeping up with our practice. Whether it's because of our busy lives or a lack of commitment or some other circumstances, we have probably tried really hard to practice regularly, but there is just no denying that the real research-proven benefits of mindfulness come from a sustained, routine daily practice.
When it comes to establishing a routine mindfulness practice, I encourage you to 'start small' and slowly build up your practice. This could mean a simple awareness of breath for just 5 minutes every morning when you wake up or every night before you sleep. When you have gotten used to this 5-minute routine, extend it to 10 minutes a day, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes...
If you're commiting to longer mindfulness practices (such as 30 or 40 minute durations), you might want to break it up into several parts practiced over different times of the day. For example, split a 30 minute practice into 10 minutes when you wake up, 10 minutes during lunch time at work, and 10 minutes in the evening or before bedtime.
If you have been exposed to or trained in a variety of mindfulness practices (awareness of breath, body scan, movements, choiceless awareness etc.), you might want to start with a practice that you feel most comfortable with and can ease into more effortlessly. If you've established a routine of one particular practice, you might want to switch to another one that is more challenging to you.
Look for an App that helps you stick to your routine mindfulness practice - I highly recommend Insight Timer, a meditation App that not only allows you to track your practice hours (and achieve miletones!), you also get to connect with fellow mindfulness practitioners from around the world. Best of all, it's free!
Getting formally trained in mindfulness: Many people have probably thought about attending a mindfulness class, but have yet to act on it. If you've been thinking about getting mindfulness training, pick a class or program that allows you enough time to learn the skills and that scaffolds you through the learning process in a more structured way. We recommend the classic 8-Week Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) Program, which is research-proven and usually taught by an approved facilitator in a group setting. There are important benefits to learning mindfulness in a group setting and over an extended period of time.
Being mindful about your New Year Resolutions: Maybe you already have a New Year resolution in mind for 2017 - such as learning a new language or mastering the guitar, and you're wondering if you might actually stick with it or achieve it successfully this time. The practice of mindfulness teaches us to focus our attention and minimize judgments or criticisms towards ourselves. With mindfulness, you can actually cultivate more patience in the process of learning the guitar, and offer yourself the compassion you need when things don't turn out as you had expected.
Can you think about how else you might be able to have a more mindful 2017? Share it with Mindful Moments!
Mindful Moments conducted two introductory workshops over the months of September and October 2016 for the graduate students at the National University of Singapore (NUS) UTown Residences. The participants learned the importance of living in the present moment, as well as how to more effectively manage their stress levels. The mindfulness skills they picked up will certainly come in handy in times of stress and difficulties!
Are you an organization looking to organize a mindfulness training workshop for your colleagues or employees, do contact Erin to discuss possibilities!
We are also able to bring the classic research-based 8-Week Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program to your workplace or community. [More details here]
Whenever I met with doubts or challenges in teaching the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Program, my mentor would gift me this timely reminder: "Erin, be curious. Curiosity will always get you out of trouble".
The cultivation of curiosity in mindfulness is an interesting practice to engage with. When was the last time you were truly curious about something? If you have observed a child figuring out the way the world works, you might notice the wonderment and spark in their eyes as they discover something new and interesting.
As a child, we were naturally curious and open about everything around us, and we simply wanted to explore. But as we grew up, fears, expectations and judgments set in, and we no longer approach things with genuine curiosity. We worry about the unknown or ambiguous, we reject repetition and avoid change, we seek concrete answers to the questions we ask, we tend to form biased perceptions, categorizing what we observe into stereotypes, and we almost always look to get something - usually a function or benefit - out of anything we see or come across.
Being curious about things is encouraged in mindfulness practice. In mindfulness, we practice a lot of acceptance towards the stresses and challenges in our life, but before we can even develop greater acceptance, we need to train the mind to see things just the way they are. We notice the prejudices and assumptions we tend to make, and learn to let go of preferences for things to go our way. When we are able to cultivate such genuine curiosity that is free from expectations and judgment, we usually experience remarkable changes to our relationship with the world around us.
Curiosity does not kill the cat. Instead, it can be your new best friend - a support you can depend on anytime, anywhere, and a gentle practice that invites you to approach life in an entirely different way. If you'd like to learn how to cultivate genuine mindful curiosity, do check out our 8-Week Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Program.
In The Mindful People Series, we interview people from different walks of life and get them to share their mindfulness experience, as well as how learning and practicing mindfulness have made a difference to their personal and professional lives.
MiMo: How did you get into learning and practicing mindfulness?
OCY: I knew about meditation way back but the very first time I got to know about mindfulness was when Erin and I had a discussion about Vipassana Meditation.
MiMo: Tell us about your experience in the MBSR program.
OCY: I enrolled in the MBSR program in August 2015 in Singapore. The 8-week program was fulfilling and experiential. I could put all the teachings and principles of mindfulness into action and apply them in my daily practice. The biggest challenge was to commit to a scheduled slot of time every day for mindfulness practice - without giving myself any convenient excuses!
MiMo: How has mindfulness contributed to your personal well-being?
OCY: I feel my personal well-being has improved tremendously since I began practicing mindfulness from moment to moment in my everyday life. I feel more grounded in the here and now, rather than worry too much about the future and regret the things I've done or have not achieved in the past. Whenever I get anxious, I will just try to stop thinking negatively and start breathing. Breathing in and I know I am breathing in. Breathing out and I know I am breathing out. When I am paying attention to my breath, I am able to keep my mind calm to work with the challenges I encounter in life.
MiMo: How has mindfulness supported you in your professional work?
OCY: As an educator and coach, mindfulness has helped me manage my level of stress in education management as well as more effectively coach my core team in 1-to-1 digital teaching and learning - a relatively new area of curriculum integration which many teachers are still getting used to. I practice deep, mindful listening when I have dialogues with my colleagues and the young learners in school; I find that I am more compassionate when dealing with the problems or difficult situations that my team members have to face; and most importantly, I am always aware of my emotions and energy in different work scenarios - this has been especially helpful for me in managing my stress levels.
MiMo: How have you incorporated mindfulness into your daily life?
OCY: I meditate and do the body scan practice twice a day, and I schedule a mindful swim of about 20 minutes every day. Whenever I am walking, I will remind myself to walk mindfully - Singaporeans tend to walk quite fast due to our more stressful pace of life, and I have found that it takes practice to remain mindful when we are walking at a faster speed!
MiMo: Any words of advice for people who are thinking about learning mindfulness?
OCY: Mindfulness is a liberation of the soul and a lifelong skill that every human being should acquire. It will help you discover your true authentic self, I promise. And I personally feel that mindfulness training is much needed in the education field, especially for our teachers, because of the heavy responsibilities we have in nurturing the future generations of Singapore. I believe that only mindful teachers can nurture and develop mindful learners. I strongly encourage teachers, principals and even students to learn and practice mindfulness.
About Ooi Ching Ya
A former trainer at the Ministry of Education Singapore and key founding member of the School of Science and Technology Singapore (SST), Ching Ya is currently Special Advisor to the Principal at RDFZ XISHAN SCHOOL in Beijing China. As a strategic consultant who bridges the educational development between Singapore and China, Ching Ya is focusing her contributions on international relations, branding, as well as lifelong learning in global digital education. She is passionate about showcasing how technology can support the rich interactions and connections across life. In 2015, Ching Ya was selected to sit on Apple Inc's ADE Regional Advisory Board for Asia-Pacific, and is responsible for the professional development of Apple Distinguished Educators in individualized digital teaching and learning.
Are you a mindfulness practitioner or do you know one who would like to share their mindfulness experience on the MiMo blog? Do drop us a message!
About The Author
MiMo founder Erin Lee is a Mindfulness Coach and MBSR Teacher at Mindful Moments, and advocate of mindfulness as the way of life. She conducts the classic 8-Week MBSR Program, as well as the 8-Week MBSR Workplace Program.
Are you a mindfulness practitioner and have meaningful experiences or thoughts about mindfulness that you'd like to share? You can contribute an article on the MiMo blog! Please contact Erin to find out more.