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Natural Awakenings Naples and Fort Myers

Next Steps Beyond Mindfulness: Psyche & Soma

by Linda Sechrist

Madeline Ebelini’s realization that her body was more than just the thing that carried her head around began in 2009 when she started the process of becoming a certified teacher of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR). Because the practice is the real teacher, after nine years of teaching, what the owner of Integrative Mindfulness, in Bonita Springs, recognized was her own transformation, enhanced by expanding the program in her personal life to include working with emotions and self-compassion, and adding more time to concentrate on exploring spirituality.

“Who we are in the beginning of any process is never who we are at the other end of it. Life gets rebuilt from the inside-out and change becomes inevitable. I grew, and concepts for what was next began to take shape. One that manifested is my new offering, Soma & Psyche Part 1, Embodiment, is an eight-week class that begins on January 14. Another is Gentle Candlelight Yoga & Meditation, which is ongoing,” notes Ebelini.

“I wanted to incorporate more of my background in transpersonal psychology into my work. Since each of us is our own experimental laboratory, we’ll be using the comfortable and inviting space at Integrative Mindfulness, our yoga mat and meditation as investigative tools to explore ourselves. Through contemplative practices like yoga and meditation, we become more aware of the experience of embodiment and all the important information our body holds about our life, who and what we are, and what we are becoming. This may include a greater awareness of our inner wounds—those we’ve carried inside for a lifetime that have shaped and continue to influence our adult self. These experiential practices show us how to hold those parts of our self with kindness and compassion,” she explains. 

Awareness and self-compassion are foundational to inner healing, and these qualities can grow throughout life. “This means that our body, heart and mind continue to show us more and more about our self and how to flourish. With continued study and practice in these contemplative disciplines, we can uncover our really blind spots—the parts just outside our conscious awareness that are keeping us stuck and repeating patterns of automatic reactivity when confronted with life’s inevitable challenges and difficulties,” advises Ebellini. 

“We humans are designed to change, but it’s not always easy. It takes curiosity, kindness and patient practice. This is the transformational process of human development integral to the field of transpersonal psychology. This is what I can bring more of to my Soma & Psyche classes that I designed. Although MBSR is a fantastic program for stress reduction, it has a set curriculum that I found a bit limiting. I wanted to take the best of MBSR and add more work around embodiment, self-compassion and spirituality, and this is what participants will find in Soma & Psyche. By keeping the cost low and offering weeknight sessions, I intend to make this program available to anyone who wants and needs it,” notes Ebelini who is also a Yoga Alliance registered yoga teacher.

Integrative Mindfulness is located in The Fountains Professional Park, 3372 Woods Edge Circle, Ste. 102, in Bonita Springs. For more information or to register for the class, call 239-590-9485 or visit

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