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Beginners’ Feedback 6/5/18

Five people attended, four female and one male. Four people filled out the feedback form. A summary of their feedback is posted below.

One of the participants attended the Beginners’ meetup and Practitioners’ meetups before. She said this meditation was life changing for her. So she brought in her friend and friend’s college going daughter for today’s class. She said lot of things were going on at her home but her husband said she should go to the class as she feels and does better after the class. Also that she felt peaceful simply being in my presence.

Another participant had attended the Vipassana program at Barre (Massachusetts) but never practiced at home after the program (1). At the end he said he liked how I presented the technique.  A set of my handouts was given to each participant (2).

I knew about this group from

– meetup.com
– Sign I saw
– Friend

My purpose in joining this group

– Feel calm and peace
– Learning how to de-stress and have my mind become more peaceful
– Renew my meditation practice, Control stress, Improve health and sleep
– To relieve anxiety, Improve sleep

Today’s ‘Take home’ ideas

– Method of breathing to improve feeling of relaxation
– Going to sleep and walking practice
– Find little moments to de-stress and have my mind become more peaceful.
– Feel calm and peace
– Don’t stress about the rules

Overall evaluation of the session

– Very useful 4

Suggestions for future meetups

None

I plan on joining a follow up group

– Practitioners’ meetup
– Beginners and Practitioners group
– I travel and so I will come as my schedule allows

My sources of stress

– Life in general
– Sleep and joint pain
– Home
– School
– Relationships at home and work

I cope with my stress by

– Exercise, Yoga, Sports, Hiking
– Eating, Reading
– Need to develop healthy ways to eat normally

Total donations offered – $27

(1) Insight Meditation Society
(2) Documents for download

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Meditation class in Montreal – Feedback

I volunteered to teach ‘Counting breaths meditation’ to the residents of International youth hostel in Montreal (Gite hostel) on May 27 when we were staying there for a few days (1). My offer was immediately accepted by the receptionist. Four adults and two children attended the 45 minutes session. I am grateful for this opportunity for sharing this simple meditation with a few people including two children for the first time in Canada.  Feedback collected from them on plain paper is posted below.

  • After many weeks of not sleeping very good, this meditation session is a great hope. Very adapted to an actual need. I have learned a lot thanks to you. I have discovered an aspect of life that I didn’t know. Actually meditation and breathing is easier than I expected. Thanks a lot for your meditation session and your kindness. Best regards.
  • This meditation pause gave me peace. I felt relaxed after 5 minutes of counting breaths meditation. I almost fell asleep. This will for sure help me with my sleeping problems. Thank you very much. (34 years)
  • Very interesting exercise, it made me very calm and relaxing myself.  It’s funny because I understand how my breathing works (about the exercise for sleep) because before I see there is a relation between breathing and sleep but I didn’t know how it’s working. Good teaching and thank you.
  • Thanks for the lesson. It’s simple to achieve, so we can do it easily.  I will try to do as often as possible to keep a calm mind and peaceful attitude.
  • I felt good and Zen. I would like to do meditation again. You are very kind. Please come back. Boy 6 years
  • I felt relaxed, in peace. I liked it a lot. I would like to have another meditation session with you. Thank you.  Girl 7 years.

(1) gite hostel – Montreal

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Beginner’s Feedback 5/1/18

One woman attended. A summary of her feedback is posted below.

My purpose in joining this group

– Relaxing, Patience, Coping

Today’s ‘Take home’ ideas

– I can do it! I can’t mess-up!

Overall evaluation of the session

– Very useful

Suggestions for the future

I plan to attend the next meetup

– Practitioners’ meetup

My sources of stress

– Home
– Work
– Feeling like I can’t get everything done

I cope with my stress by

– Walking
– Yoga (try to)
– I have not yet found my “hobby” but hope to some day

Total donations offered – $20

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Pre diabetes patients – Feedback 4/25/18

I offered a seminar at the Whitney Young Health Center for pre-diabetes patients on April 25, 2018. It was attended by 3 women. A folder containing my key handouts  and testimonials was given to each participant (2), (3). 

Summary of the Feedback

I will practice this technique for my (concern) 

  • Sleeping, When stuck in traffic
  • Anxiety and any situation
  • Sleeping trouble (I wake up 2 to 3 times a night)
  • Sleepless nights

Take home’ points

  • I like the idea of counting breaths in traffic

Evaluation of the seminar 

  • Very useful – 3
  • Useful – 1

Comments

  • Informative, Good analogies (thoughts are like birds in clouds)
  • No comments. However it was very helpful and I appreciate the class and the teacher.
  • Informational.

I wish to 

  • Receive ‘Annual update’ on this technique – 3

(1) Whitney Young Health Center
(2) Documents for download – All handouts
(3) Sample testimonials – 16

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Practitioners’ Feedback 4/17/18

Three members came in.

What did we do?

–  Each of us shared how we practiced after the last meetup.

– Meditated sitting on cushions in sofas/chairs to effortlessly maintain an erect posture. Each of us practiced in our own way for about 20 minutes and then chanting ‘May we all be happy silently’ once at each segment for 10 minutes. Total meditation was for 30 minutes.

– At the end, massage all over the head, neck and shoulders using one hand at a time.

Summary of feedback

My purpose in joining this group
– Improve and motivate my progress
– Practice meditation
– Inner peace and relaxation

Today’s ‘Take home’ ideas

– “Watch the movie” in the mind (watch the thoughts appearing in the mind like an audience watching the images
on the movie screen)
– Let thoughts pass by like a movie
– Path not goal (Focusing on the journey rather than the goal?)

Overall evaluation of the session

– Very useful – 2
– Useful – 1

Suggestions for the future 

– More time, may be
– Perhaps a lamp, to soften relaxing to the reality after meditation

I plan to attend the next meetup

– Practitioners’ meetup 2
– Beginners’ and Practitioners’ meetup on third Saturday

My sources of stress

– Relationships at Home 2
– Life in general
– Relationships

I cope with my stress by

– Meditation (I want to use it more)
– Meditation
– Getting busy with activities Doing things that I enjoy
– Exercise 2
– Yoga

Total donations – $20

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‘Beginners’ Feedback 4/3/18

Two people attended. A summary of their feedback is posted below.

My purpose in joining this group

– Learn to meditate
– To kick start the practice. I have wanted to start but always put off.

Today’s ‘Take home’ ideas

– Different techniques, Doing ti before bed and upon waking up
– Various methods, Pick one that seems to work

Overall evaluation of the session

– Very useful  2

Suggestions for the future

– Not sure. I think the length of time is fine.

I plan to attend the next meetup

– Practitioners’ meetup – 2

My sources of stress

– Home
– My health
– Relationships

I cope with my stress by

– Exercise – 2
– Hiking, Listening to music
– Math & Algorithm development

Total donations offered – $40

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Beginners and Practitioners Feedback 2/17/18

The first Open house for Beginners and Practitioners was off to a good start with 2 people who were beginners for this style of meditation but practiced other styles of meditation. A summary of their feedback is posted below.

My purpose in joining this group

– To learn new meditation techniques to help me with stress and sleep
– Learn to meditate in a more effective way

Today’s ‘Take home’ ideas

– All of them!
– Count your breaths

Overall evaluation of the session

– Very useful  2

Suggestions for the future

– None

I plan to attend the next meetup

– Yes  2

My sources of stress

– Relationships with my ex-husband and my mother
– Lingering health problems are frustrating
– My work demands
– Home
– My health

I cope with my stress by

– Exercise
– Meditation
– Yoga
– Talking
– Eating
– Watching movies

Books on meditation taken with deposit

– Lovingkindness: The Revolutionary Art of Happiness by Sharon Salzberg $7
– An End to Suffering: The Buddha in the World Paperback by Pankaj Mishra $4
– Crucial conversations by Kerry Paterson & others $8

Total love donations offered – $2

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‘Beginners’ Feedback 2/6/18

Three people attended. One of them was a 15 year old teen who came along with her mom. A set of my handouts was given to each participant (1). A summary of their feedback is posted below.

I will use this technique for my

– Stress, Anger
– Trouble sleeping, Anxiety, Relationship stress

Today’s ‘Take home’ ideas

– Counting breaths
– Can be done with eyes opened, Do it routinely
– Counting my breaths! Love the segment mode

Overall evaluation of the session

– Very useful  2
– Useful  1

Suggestions for the future

– Keep food nearby (a lollipop was offered)
– If possible, weekly classs

Books on meditation taken with deposit

– Finding the quiet
– Transformation and healing

Total love donations offered – $40

(1) Documents for download

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Practitioners Feedback 1/16/18

One member came though it was snowing and said he didn’t want to let down others who RSVP’D. It was so nice of him. Two others cancelled the RSVP in advance.

What did we do?

–  Reviewed the practice after the last meetup

– Meditated sitting in chairs on cushions to effortlessly maintain an erect posture, using the segment mode, for about 30 minutes and then chanting ‘May we all be happy silently’ once at each segment completing two hands. During the chanting visualized the images of people in the immediate vicinity, then family, coworkers, extended family members and so on, expanding the coverage wider and wider, as the time permits. The goal is to extend the good wishes to one and all including those we don’t like.

– At the end, massage all over the head, neck and shoulders using one hand at a time.

– Then CS (Organizer) demonstrated the movements of ‘Stretching for beginners’ as shown in the video posted in ‘countingbreaths.com’ (1). This stretching is to follow the morning meditation to prepare the body for action during the day. It also develops body awareness, supplementing breath awareness.

Suggestions from CS

To improve sleep: Before lying down, empty the mind by downloading the swirling thoughts on to a paper. Make two columns – one titled “Worries and Goals’ and the second titled ‘Plans’. Post all the thoughts into the respective columns. This would free the mind. After lying in the bed, as soon as one desires to sleep, practice the ‘Segment mode’ non-stop to automatically fall asleep.

– To bring lying or sitting meditation into the daily routine, set an alarm 30 minutes before the current waking up time. Use this newly created free time to practice meditation either lying in the bed or sitting on the chair or floor.  Morning meditation will make a big impact on daytime stress. After the meditation practice becomes a daily habit, prepone the alarm by 15 minutes and practice the stretching routine also.

– On weekends, allot at least 45 minutes to practice meditation and stretching.

– Meetup for all levels: We talked about setting up another meetup for potential Beginners and Practitioners who are not able to come on Tuesdays. The second Saturday of the month from 2 to 3.30 was considered a good time.  I invite other members to comment on this proposal. If no comments are received by 1/24/18, I will go ahead and announce as above.

Summary of his feedback

My purpose in joining this group

– Rewind and review the practice, release the stress and reclaim control of my emotions and reactions.

Today’s ‘Take home’ ideas

– New morning routine
– Meditation and then stretching

Overall evaluation of the session

– Very useful

Suggestions for the future –

I plan to attend the next meetup

– Yes

My sources of stress

– Work
– Family
– Relationships

I cope with my stress by

– Meditation
– Doing things that I enjoy

Total voluntary donations offered – $10

(1) Stretching for beginners

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18th Seminar – East Greenbush Library

I offered the 18th seminar at East Greenbush Community Library (1) on Jan 10, 2018 from 6.30 to 8.30 pm. Attended by 7 women and 4 men. A folder containing my key handouts  and testimonials was given to each participant (2), (3). 

Summary of the Feedback

I will practice this technique for my (concern) 

  • Stress and Sleeping
  • For stress reduction, Improved sleep, Improved quality of life and health
  • Stress, Falling asleep
  • Getting back to sleep
  • Sleep
  • Sleep,Tension
  • Stress, Learning to relax
  • Relaxation, Relieve stress
  • General Stress reduction

My ‘Take home’ points

  • Practice breathing
  • Learn to relax
  • Practice for six months, Breathe through nose and counting
  • Focus of breathing to relax
  • Breathing meditation based on counting, Practice when you have time anywhere
  • I want to share with my sister who has chronic back pain
  • Finger tip counting
  • Breathing 1-2-3
  • Counting breaths and the times to do the breathing

Evaluation of the seminar 

  • Very useful – 7
  • Satisfied – 3

Comments

  • Excellent presentation, Experienced presenter, Thank you for offering
  • Very good info.
  • Thank you!

I wish to 

  • Receive ‘Annual update’ on this technique – 1
  • Interested in ‘follow up classes’ on today’s techniques –
  • Interested in joining a support group for meditation –

(1) East Greenbush Community Library
(2) Documents for download – All handouts
(3) Sample testimonials – 16

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Public Seminars