Mindfulness gurus headed to Flint

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Mindfulness is the increasingly trendy practice of being "in the moment" is believed to have life changing benefits.

Life gets busy, so it can be tough to do, but at an upcoming Flint event, national gurus will show you how to get in touch with "the now".

The word "mindfulness" conjures up images of tranquility and relaxation.

But Lisa Malinowski, of the Crim Fitness Foundation's Mindfulness Program, says the practice is really about living in the moment, taking in all that is happening right now.

"It might be having a conversation with a family member and really listening. Or, it might be eating a really delicious meal, and just savoring each bite while you're eating it," Lisa says.

Mindfulness is heralded for stress reduction and building an overall sense of well-being, that brings inner peace.

"In your personal life, your stress levels might go down because you're just in this moment, rather than worrying about the future or reliving the past," Lisa says.

The Crim Foundation started up a mindfulness program in Flint schools, and director Sarah Sullivan says it's grown by leaps and bounds, "It started as a pilot project in just a few classrooms, in a few schools. Teachers found such positive impacts in the classroom, on student focus and engagement, and ability to deal with traumas that are occuring for students, that they kept asking it to expand."

The event launchs Peace Week in Flint. The historic Capitol Theater will host the workshop, transformed into a theater of the mind, where participants will discover how developing inner peace can have ripple effects throughout the community.

"Interpersonal things like compassion and understanding and listening and being able to choose a response to things that occur in a healthy way," Sarah says.

Nationally reknown mindfulness gurus from the Holistic Life Foundation will lead the workshop.

"They started over 15 years ago a mindfulness initiative in Baltimore, and they've seen drastic reductions in violence and suspension. And we want to learn from them.

The Holistic Life Foundation takes mindfulness and yoga practice to underserved communities across the country.

"We've been sending our staff to Baltimore, and now they're coming here," Sarah says, "And we are delighted that they'll make the event possible for a thousand people in Flint to see."

If you want to participate in the Peace Begins with Us Mindfulness Workshop next monday, March 19th, you have to RSVP by this Friday.

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