A Note from Louisa

This time last year, I remember feeling inundated by the number of proclamations that 2020 was the year of “2020 Vision”. All would become clear in this new year, and all the hard work of preceding years would somehow culminate in this period of transparency and surety.

Well, that didn’t happen - at least not the way we expected it to.

But I’m not quite willing to give up on the idea of 2020’s gifts of better understanding the scope of our human challenges.

I, for one, do feel like the year has spotlighted the work that lies ahead. We’ve learned that, under stress, we feel more separate from one another, and then act from that misguided belief. Forgetting that we are all waves in the same ocean, we can become angry and hurt one another.

In times of crisis, we can grow selfish and self-righteous. We are more apt to protect ourselves and our loved ones, rather than to reach out to make sure that our umbrella of protection covers as many as possible.

I experienced this clarity first hand when, early in the crisis, the governor of New York began asking as of yet unaffected states for ventilators. I actually said to my colleagues “But, if we send our ventilators to New York, what happens when we need them?” Ouch. A clear case of me, my, mine…

That was not a pretty moment. But it was a necessary moment. One that brought into focus where my work lies. We cannot fight the demon that we refuse to admit exists. And now, we see it. Thank you 2020.

Instead of feeling that this was a lost year, instead of feeling that we need to bide our time to get back to something that really wasn’t working for the majority of us in the first place, perhaps we could see 2020 as a “humanity needs assessment”.

Without 2020, we wouldn’t know the scope of the work that lies ahead. We did end up with clear vision after all.

And now, we can bring the light. We can bring the light because that is also something that human beings excel at when connected with our true loving nature and we turn toward one another instead of against.

Happy New Year. Make it count.

Every Blessing,
Louisa
We at The Center for Mindful Living wish you a happy and safe holiday season. CML will be closed for the holidays through January 3rd to celebrate with our families. All regular programming will resume virtually on January 4th.
Please Welcome our Newest Associate
CML is thrilled to welcome Megan Kelly Filipi to our family of providers. Meg is a graduate of Marquette University with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. She has had an exciting 25 year career in nursing and has experience in multiple disciplines, from the ER to Covid Contact Tracing.

Most recently, Meg has become a certified Core Energy Life Coach in order to help, encourage, and guide those during various life transitions. 

Meg has a warm, welcoming presence and easily establishes comfortable client relationships. To learn more about Meg’s work or to schedule a coaching session, please visit her website at www.centerforreinvention.com, or call her at 402.651.7562.
CML VIRTUAL MEDITATION SCHEDULE:
(Resuming on January 4th)

Daily Silent Meditation             
8:15 - 9:00 am
Monday - Friday Morning
Meeting ID: 899 6440 8784
Passcode: 818114
----------------------------
Guided Meditation
1:15 - 1:45 pm          
Tuesday Afternoon
Meeting ID: 826 1223 4516
Passcode: 058471

Please Join Us for the Annual Omaha Meditates on New Year’s Day
(See Details Below in the 'Workshops & Events' section)
Please note that CML will remain closed to in-person events and programs until at least May 1st. We will keep our community apprised of any and all updates as 2021 progresses.
Will You Help Inspire Our Community?

With so much uncertainty, anxiety, and division in our world, we may need to look a bit harder to find inspiration right now. Where better to look than here amongst us?

As a feature of our mid-month update, we would like to occasionally offer stories of hope and compassion from our community, or perhaps some humor or light-heartedness, to see us through the next few months.

Have you witnessed or experienced a moment of kindness? An expression of love or compassion that can help bring light to these shadowy times? Do you have some humor to help brighten our day? Would you be willing to share it with our community? 

Simple reminders of our capacity to be loving and tender in a time of such heightened vitriol can help sustain us and inoculate us against our own anger and hateful thoughts. Let us collectively pause and reconnect with our common humanity, and with one another.

When actively looking for kindness in the world, we are so much more likely to find it. 

Please email Louisa at Louisa@thecenterformindfullivingomaha.com. Stories can be shared anonymously, if you prefer. Please let us know in the email.
Omaha Meditates 2021
Facilitated Online by Aaron Weiner
January 1, 2021

Wisdom House Collaborative is partnering once more with the Center for Mindful Living to celebrate Omaha Meditates on New Year’s Day. Please come join us at 11 am for a virtual hour-long sit on January 1st to start 2021 with intention. 

If you wish to take the Omaha Meditates pledge to dedicate one minute or more to the goodwill of the event please go to Omahameditates.org. Or visit the Wisdom House Collaborative website at wisdomhouseomaha.com where you’ll find their New Year’s Resolution page that talks about recent scientific findings on the mechanism for changing our habits through literally rewiring our minds and bodies beginning with the training of attention and clarity.  

Meeting ID: 885 0969 4961
Passcode: 462977
Conversations with Wisdom: Through the Dark Woods
Wednesday Evenings– February 10th to March 3rd
5:00 PM to 6:30 PM
Facilitated Online by Dr. Louisa Foster
Offered Freely

Wisdom has always been won by finding, or blazing, a path through the dark woods, often with little light to guide us, and without knowing what lies ahead. This winter, we will gather in the deep forest to connect with our own wisdom through guided meditation, reflection and writing, and walk together toward the light.

This four week session is freely offered as support during the darkest days of an unprecedented winter. Please feel free to extend an invitation to anyone that you feel might benefit from community and contemplation during this difficult time.

To join us, please register here.
Mindfulness Study Group
Facilitated Online by Laura Crosby
First and Third Sunday of the month from 4pm to 6 pm

The Mindfulness Study Group is beginning its new book selection, In the Face of Fear, Buddhist Wisdom for Challenging TimesThis anthology features teachings from the Dalai Lama, Pema Chödrön, Thich Nhat Hanh, Chögyam Trungpa, Sylvia Boorstein, Jack Kornfield, Norman Fischer, Jon Kabat-Zinn, Sharon Salzberg, Joseph Goldstein and many others. Its 33 essays explore how we can:
  • remain open, joyful, and caring, even when life is stressful 
  • access our innate confidence and fearlessness
  • turn difficult times into opportunities for spiritual development
  • discover that our true nature is always awake, wise, and good, no matter what is happening   

You can join us for the Mindfulness Study Group the first and third Sunday of each month from 4-6pm via Zoom (info below) Our sessions are freely offered, drop-ins are welcome, and there's no registration necessary. We read together - so no homework! - and discuss each chapter. Books are available from lcrosby@me.com.

Meeting ID: 843 4464 0572
Passcode: 570798
CML Third Space
Shared Facilitation Online
Second and Fourth Sunday of the month 
7:00 pm to 8:00 pm

CML Third Space is a virtual community where we can gather, meet new neighbors and friends, and engage in resiliency building to help us stay connected and grounded through this difficult time.
 
Please join us on the 2nd and 4th Sunday of the month at 7:00 pm CST for a co-created space where we use mindfulness, connection and play to keep our immune systems strong and robust!

Meeting ID: 817 7852 5724
Passcode: 212247

Join us on the Third Space Facebook page.
You Can Be Both
By Megan Kelly Filipi, BSN, RN, CPC, ELI-MP

“Get outside. Watch the sunrise. Watch the sunset. How does that make you feel? Does it make you feel big and tiny? Because there’s something good about feeling both.”
- Amy Grant

That was my Thanksgiving.

I was solo, watching the sun rise and set in Valentine, Nebraska. And it was glorious!

I never thought that I would be alone for Thanksgiving, (notice—I didn’t say lonely) nor did I ever think I could have enjoyed being alone for Thanksgiving. But that’s what 2020 has done, help us to see our lives and our experiences in a different way.

What a time we are living in! Soon enough this pandemic will be coming to an end. Yes, it will be over. Eventually. With all the heartache it has caused, it will be gone as fast as it came.

Because we are in the holiday season, let’s focus on blessings. With the holidays, there is often a belief, and sometimes even forced subliminal messaging, that they are supposed to be perfectly joy-filled and merry. But they can also be messy, depressing, and harried. They can be both. So too can this pandemic.

Amidst all the pain, there still is goodness happening. What if we looked at this global pandemic as if it’s happening FOR us, instead of happening TO us? We can have both togetherness yet isolation; family yet solitude; love yet fear; laughter yet grief; fulfillment yet feeling incomplete; joy yet sorrow.

How many of us have felt guilty smiling while suffering a loss? At the time believing, “I shouldn’t smile because I am grieving.” What if we allowed ourselves to feel both? What if we allowed ourselves to be both happy and sad? One thing this scary time needs is GRACE—grace towards others and especially toward ourselves. Let’s not chastise ourselves for feeling some good during these days of fear.

You have permission. You can be scared, yet secure; terrified, yet peaceful; insecure, yet safe; unsure, yet solid; leading, yet asking for guidance; angry, yet calm; overwhelmed, yet in control; lost, yet found; small, yet powerful; serious, yet playful; crying, yet laughing; unsure, yet wise; second guessing, yet intuitive; angry, yet compassionate; protector, yet needing protection; sensitive, yet strong; work in progress, yet masterpiece; lover, yet needing to be loved; history, yet present moment; segmented, yet whole; curse, yet a blessing.

I am a nurse, with 25 years of experience, who is recently certified as a Wellness/Energy Leadership Coach. I want to serve and guide those going through life’s transitions. I want to help shift your energy, so that you can get the most out of your life, while making conscious decisions through your transitions.

I’ve gone through big transitions in my life, especially as of late, and I am here to help those who will do the same. We ALL go through transitions—each and every one of us— you transition. It’s a collective grief we are experiencing. We are all in this together.

As palpable as the stress, anxiety, and fear of our world is today we can prevail and find the goodness. Let’s bring in the New Year with wholeness. Strive to accept yourself with your multitude of opposing emotions. Where there is dark, let there be light. Let’s carry the light together into the new year.

You can be both.