In January of 2015, I created Flourish & Bloom and began to facilitate community mindfulness opportunities in Monterey, California. I practice being mindful in my daily life— I am a continuous work in progress and so is Flourish & Bloom.
Background & Training
A practitioner of mindfulness and meditation since 2009, I am a teacher who believes that cultivating greater awareness in each moment is key to living a more satisfying life. I have received training from Mindful Schools, I am a teacher with Mindful Education Project, and a Qualified Teacher of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) through the Center for Mindfulness at UMass. In January of 2016, I founded Monterey Bay Meditation Studio with my colleague, Marianne Rowe. There, I offer regular drop-in meditations, as well as courses on all kinds of topics like self-compassion, anxiety, courage, strategies for introverts and Highly Sensitive People, and other topics that affect well-being. I also enjoy writing about these sorts of topics at this site, and I coach individuals who are interested in being more aware, feeling better, and living with intention.
As a teacher, I offer a presence that is sensitive, calming, compassionate, and accepting, allowing people to be seen and understood just as they are. My in-depth knowledge of mindfulness principles and my lived experience and reflection in working with grief, anxiety, uncertainty, and high sensitivity allow me to offer insights and empathy.
My approach is one of nuance and balance, marrying practicality with tenderness: I offer teaching that is directly applicable to everyday life here and now, yet I am not afraid to touch into the intricacies of the heart and soul. My attitude balances positivity and acceptance, extending encouragement and a real belief that transformation and agency is possible for everyone, while acknowledging and respecting each person’s experiences and limitations, as well as the depth of difficult emotions.
Most importantly, I offer myself with humor, authenticity and vulnerability. As a real and approachable human being with struggles, worries, and imperfections, I work with the practice of mindfulness every single day as a constant thread throughout my life. Practicing mindfulness with curiosity and a growth mindset has been without a doubt the chief source of growth and happiness in my adult life, and working with my own weaknesses and limitations is essential to my teaching, allowing me to practice what I teach and continually grow in compassion for myself and others.
In my work with meditation and mindfulness, I have taught elementary students, high schoolers, moms, international graduate students, adults in the foster care system, and other audiences. I believe that training and practice in being more aware and compassionate (including to ourselves!) can be helpful, and even life-changing, to pretty much everyone!
I live in Monterey, California with my husband, Adil, and I enjoy writing, swimming, biking, reading, cooking, taking photographs, and being outdoors.