Mindfulness Mode

Creativity To Heal and Empower; Morgan Beard

December 15, 2021

Morgan Beard has dedicated her life to using creativity to heal and empower. She received her BA in Visual and Media Studies from Duke University in 2012 and her MPS in Art Therapy from the School of Visual Arts in New York City in 2017. As an art therapist in New York, she worked in a public elementary school, an adult inpatient psychiatric unit, and a 183-bed nursing home before her life came to a screeching halt as a result of a personal burnout.

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Most Influential Person

  • I met a woman who worked out of the same office building where I worked. She was a super spunky British woman and she was passionate about TM (Transcendental Meditation). She is still in my life today.

Effect on Emotions

  • Mindfulness makes my emotions feel more tangible and tolerable. It makes me feel like I can go through life with them, even though I don't like them.
  • It just gives them an added layer of muscle or strength.

Thoughts on Breathing

  • I use breathing a lot with my clients. I use it when I'm ramping up to a meditation or a visualization that I guide them through. I usually do that spontaneously.
  • Breathing is one of the most powerful tools for getting someone to turn the volume down on what's happening outside of them and to transition into experiencing what's happening inside of them.
  • I usually have these dual anchors. One is, feel the solidness of the earth underneath you. It's this totally stable, unmoving force under us which is comfortable and grounding for people.
  • Secondly, tune into the breath, which is this continually flowing and changing thing. If you can keep one foot in one and one foot in the other, you can balance life. Some things are very secure and slow moving and some things are constantly changing.
  • If you can find footing with both of those forces then you've really got it all. You've got both poles.

Resources

Book: Going On Being: Buddhism and the Way of Change by Mark Epstein
App: My 3 3.ie

Bullying Story

  • I'll tell a personal story. When I was in 8th grade, I had a friend who, when she initially came into our school we were close and then we stopped connecting. It seemed like she was pulling away.
  • She was entering another, more popular group of girls at my school and I didn't understand. I kept reaching out and just kept getting nothing.
  • At that time, AIM (Instant Messenger) was a big thing, so after school we would come home and log on all your friends would be there.
  • One time I came home from school and this friend chats me, and I'm all excited because I thought I had this opportunity to connect with her again. She invited me to hang out.
  • Then I found out that it was actually her friend on the keyboard, telling me all this and lying to me. She was posing as that girl. I was totally crushed.
  • I think in that moment it confirmed something that I was already afraid about myself which was that no one wants to be my friend.
  • I grew up as an older child with older parents and so I was a very lonely kid. I was always hungry for social connection with my peers. I was so vulnerable to rejection, pranks, and insults.

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