An Overview of “Transformative Mindfulness”
By Ouida Joi Cooper-Rodriguez, MA
Mindfulness is not just about meditation. Although Mindfulness Meditation is a powerful tool for awareness, stilling the mind, and noticing. As I have been in healing and expressive arts, Interfaith spiritual leadership, and have practiced world contemplative and indigenous practices for 20+ years, I developed a multi-faceted modality called Transformative Mindfulness (TMind). In TMind, the practice expands beyond meditation to include cognitive, somatic, expressive arts, and trauma-sensitive practices. It is a “mind-body-spirit” integration for bringing more balance and clarity, alleviating stress, burnout and compassion fatigue, and facilitating healing in ones Life. Healing can happen on many levels and should not be confused with curing, which can happen on a physical level. In an article by Lissa Rankin, MD entitled The Difference Between Healing and Curing" in Psychology Today, Dr. Rankin states, "...You can cure without healing, and you can heal without curing. In medical school and residency, most of our training focused on curing. Very little attention was focused on healing. You might heal a fracture or heal a gaping surgical wound. But healing a person? Nah. Woo woo, hocus pocus...But healing and curing are inherently different. Curing means "eliminating all evidence of disease,"while healing means "becoming whole." TMind assists individuals to regain "wholeness."
There are many different definitions of mindfulness. Below are a few:
Cambridge Dictionary: “[Mindfulness is] the practice of being aware of your body, mind, and feelings in the present moment, thought to create a feeling of calm.”
Wikipedia: “Mindfulness is the psychological process of bringing one’s attention to the internal and external experiences occurring in the present moment, which can be developed through the practice of meditation and other training.”
Jon Kabat-Zinn (Founder of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction): “Mindfulness means paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and nonjudgmentally.”
Definition of Transformative Mindfulness: “Transformative Mindfulness is a way of Life that utilizes movement, breathwork, centering, and trauma-sensitive and other expressive arts practices to increase self-awareness, and bring more balance, harmony, sense of well-being, and healing into all aspects of ones life.” (Cooper-Rodriguez, 2019)
TMind assists individuals to BE mindfulness in all aspects of their lives, as opposed to DO mindfulness. It taps into the innate wisdom of the mind-body-spirit connection to bring a greater sense of peacefulness, tranquility, harmony, and healing.
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