Ashley Bovin

What We Get Wrong About Suffering

It’s a fact of life that no one is immune to suffering, and it’s safe to say we each experience it in a variety of ways as we continue to navigate the modern world. Being a mindfulness center, we neither want to brush off that reality nor dwell on it. But we also feel this moment—when many of us are feeling especially unsettled—offers an opportunity to shed some light on this concept of “suffering,” what it really means for us in daily life, and how we can help alleviate it—starting with ourselves. There’s a great definition of mindfulness attributed to …

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Why Silence Scares Us

Like many people, you might hear about mindfulness and meditation and think, “Silence? Slowing down? That’s just not for me.” In our on-the-go, productivity-and-achievement-minded culture, the thought of sitting still, or embracing silence, can seem like the opposite of what will help us make progress in our lives. Yet if we don’t take time to slow down and zoom out from our day-to-day habits, our lives might start to live us in a way that eventually makes it hard for us to recognize ourselves! A result of our achievement-oriented culture is that many people fear or avoid slowing down and …

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Learning to Listen to the Body

Today, I decided I needed to do some yoga or meditation before getting started with work—especially because I neglected to do my usual meditation immediately after waking up this morning. I’ve let that slide more than I care to admit in the last couple months. I use the word “yoga” loosely in referring to my practice because I feel like I don’t really “practice” it. So far, it has consisted of warmups for my pole fitness classes or what’s been included in mindfulness classes I’ve taken. But sometimes—and this has only been true for me in the last handful of …

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What a Feel-Good T-Shirt Slogan Can Teach Us About Mindfulness

I’ve noticed a phrase floating around on the internet lately, on mugs and t-shirts for sale and colorful social media feeds, meant to promote a positive attitude: “No Bad Days.”   The first few times I saw this phrase, I thought it was rather dismissive. I feel confident saying that I’ve had plenty of bad days in my life. And this trendy new feel-good phrase wants to erase that? It’s not that easy! “No Bad Days” presented itself to me as just another form of toxic positivity, meant to keep us from acknowledging the difficult times in our lives (and in others’). …

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Tools for a Mindful Life: Curiosity

Remaining open to life and what it can teach us When we start to practice mindfulness, we’re invited to adopt some new tools and attitudes. One of the most important is curiosity.   Have you ever heard the aphorism, “Interested people are interesting people?”   I don’t suggest we should seek for others to think we’re interesting, but consider the alternative: “Bored people are boring people.” We’re complex beings with almost limitless ways of using our time if we get creative. To live an interesting life, it’s not required that we do daring things, like skydive or swim with sharks. We …

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The Benefits of Taking a Mindfulness Class

As the benefits of mindfulness are becoming more widely accepted, and it continues to grow as a practice and influence in our culture, there’s no shortage of resources available to help you begin your own mindfulness journey. These resources can vary in cost and commitment level—from free articles, apps, podcasts, and e-books, to full-length books, one-day workshops, week-long retreats, and 8-week classes.   The variety of formats available make it easy for would-be students to find a good fit, no matter their schedule or preferred learning style.   We understand that everyone learns differently, and that some people might be …

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