A Keen Mind | Stress Reduction | Mindfulness | Meditation

A Keen Mind | Stress Reduction | Mindfulness | Meditation

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By Jude Johnson, MA, LMFT
Welcome! Most people struggle with stress and feel overwhelmed when they can't keep up with life's demands. If you are battling stress over competing demands from work, home or both and would love to find relief from the onslaught of daily strains and pressures, this show can help. Jude Johnson, is a licensed therapist who teaches Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) which has been shown to help with stress, pain and illness. This show provides effective tips for stress reduction and includes a guided meditation.
More places to listen

More places to listen

#34: Slowing Down & Being Mindful After Work
This episode shares how to let go of work obligations when you are off the clock or on vacation.  This time of year kids are out of school and many of you will be taking time off from work so you can spend time with your family and friends.  You will learn practical ways that you can use mindfulness to slow down as you transition from a working mode to down time.  Following the talk there will be a guided meditation which will include a poem by Mary Oliver at the close.  If you are in the Charlotte area and would like to learn more or register for the upcoming workshop on July 19th from 4:30-7pm, visit www.akeenmind.com and click on the link that reads "Train for Life...Be Mindful & Live Abundantly."  
29:15
June 13, 2019
#33: Finding Flow with Mindfulness
 This episode will explore how mindfulness can help you achieve a state of flow.  Most of us have been in a flow state before, where we performed a task with such intense focus that all our mental chatter fell away and we become completely consumed with the activity at hand.  Being in a state of flow helps us find more enjoyment in life.   In this episode I will cover 3 specific strategies for developing a flow state. Following the talk there will be a guided meditation.  
28:37
April 29, 2019
#32: Being Mindful While Embracing Change & Loving Life
Through our life's journey everything keeps changing no matter how hard we try and hold on to what we have.  The famous quote by Heraclitus "the only constant is change" is true.  If things are going poorly, just wait.  If things are good, just wait.  The inevitable ups and downs of life are going to occur whether we want them to or not.  Knowing that change is coming doesn't mean that we should coast through life on automatic pilot.  The fact that everything is changing, is an invitation for us to inhabit each moment as though it was our last.  This episode explores how we can capture the moments in our lives that remind us how important it is for us to be present.  This talk was inspired by a video that I posted on my Facebook page.  To watch the video please visit https://www.facebook.com/onekeenmind/ and look for my video that was published on March 23rd.  Following the talk there will be a guided meditation.  
26:45
April 2, 2019
#31: Quieting Your Inner Critic
This episode explores the value of seeking out support when we are caught in stress and doubting our self-worth.  While we can strive to manage stress on our own, sometimes, being wise, means being vulnerable .  I also explore how to use mindful observation to step outside of your negative stream of thoughts.  There will be a brief guided reflection to help you be the observer of your experience, rather than believing all of the negative thoughts you have.  Following the talk there will be a guided meditation.  
29:06
March 22, 2019
#30: The Art of Self Compassion Part II
This episode digs deeper into how to practice self compassion when our pesky inner critic won't seem to quiet down.  In this episode I present a question that was asked by a listener in response to the previous show, The Art of Self Compassion, episode 29.  Following this talk there is a guided meditation which focuses on loving kindness.  
29:34
March 12, 2019
#29: The Art of Self Compassion
In this episode I decided to use being mindful of the present moment to inform the content I provided instead of preparing anything formally.  I explored the need for mindfulness in schools and touch on the impact of bullying, as well as mindful parenting.  The bulk of this episode dives more deeply into self compassion and how self esteem can actually trigger stress.  Following the talk there is a guided meditation.  
33:26
February 28, 2019
#28 Overcoming Barriers
Welcome to the A Keen Mind Podcast, I’m Jude a licensed therapist and meditation teacher.  This episode will cover simple ways that you can nurture and sustain a meditation practice. I will discuss some common obstacles people face as they develop a  meditation practice and explore ways to overcome these obstacles. Following the talk there will be a guided meditation.
31:00
February 19, 2019
#27: Dissolving Stress Through Mindful Reflection
This episode explores how to use mindful reflection as a means to learning how to work with uncomfortable thoughts and emotions.  We often don't take the time to reflect on what is painful in our lives because we spend so much energy pushing away pain and seeking pleasure.  Avoiding our painful emotions may be necessary for a time, however to resolve these feelings, we need to express them.  If you have been through trauma or are having difficulty expressing your feelings, you may need to see a professional counselor to help you with this process.  Following the talk there will be a guided reflection and meditation.   The skills taught in this podcast are no intended to replace traditional medical care. 
32:08
February 12, 2019
#26 Perception is Everything
This episode explores the role that perception plays in how we communicate with others. I use a personal story to illustrate how easily we can become locked in to our way of seeing situations and how we can use mindfulness to gain a broader and more flexible perspective.  Practicing mindful communication can give us the resources to avoid unnecessary conflicts and help us find a greater sense of connection with others.  Following the talk there will be guided meditation. 
29:17
February 6, 2019
#25 Remembering Why You Started
Setting intentions are essential for the development of a mindfulness-meditation practice.  When we remember why  we started practicing meditation, we can set our compass for the direction we value most.  Being in touch with our sincere intention fuels how we are paying attention.  Being overwhelmed with stress pulls us away from sincere intentions as we easily forget what matters and lash out in fear and anger.  In this session I will discuss the importance of setting intentions in meditation and in daily life.  Following the talk there will be a guided meditation. 
30:42
January 29, 2019
#24 Transforming Anger into Self-Compassion
Anger is a normal human emotion, yet can become overwhelming when we are under a lot of stress.  Some of us are in the habit of directing our anger outwards while others keep their feelings buried deep inside.  This show will explore how to find a balance with the anger we feel and transform our anger into self compassion.  Following the talk there will be a guided meditation.
33:00
January 21, 2019
#23: Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction
 This podcast provides strategies to reduce stress so that you can find more joy and peace in life. In this session, I will provide an overview of the Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) class and some of the important features covered in the class. Since many of us spend a significant amount of time living in our heads, this session is inviting you all to come back to the body, instead of being overly focused on the habits of the thinking mind.  Following the talk there will be a guided body scan meditation. 
38:15
January 15, 2019
#22: Four Ways to Influence Habit Change
This episode is about Habit change.  Habits are actually very difficult to develop because they don’t come to us naturally, Yet ever New Year, people set goals for themselves to make positive changes.  The most common resolutions are focused around healthy eating, exercise and saving more money.  In this episode, I am going to talk about 4 ways that we can influence our habits. 1. Meditation 2. Community 3. Taking small steps  4. Accountability  and following the talk there will be a guided meditation. 
27:52
January 8, 2019
#21 Love & Kindess
This episode explores the benefits of letting go of being judgmental of others in order to cultivate love and kindness towards ourselves and others. I will share a story about a homeless man that can help us see beyond our judgments. Following the talk there will be a loving kindness meditation. I will be taking off the next two weeks to be with friends and family. The next podcast will come out on January 8th.
32:45
December 18, 2018
#20 Gratitude: Embracing the Ups and Downs of Life
In this episode a share a personal story about the fears and challenges I faced while driving for 9.5 hours through a snow storm with my two boys, Henry and Carter ages 5 and 8. I use this story to explore ways to use mindfulness to work with fear and to embrace life with gratitude. Following the talk there will be a guided meditation.
36:37
December 11, 2018
#19 Reducing Holiday Stress Part III
In this episode I explore how to use mindful listening, assertive communication and forgiveness.
31:50
December 4, 2018
#18 Reducing Holiday Stress Part II
So many people want the holiday season to go perfectly! They want Norman Rockwell Moments that look picturesque, but what they really longing for is true connection. This episode I will talk about how to let go of unrealistic expectations so you can enjoy the season rather than being caught up in a play by play commentary in your head. This episode also explores how to use mindfulness to work with irritations that you may encounter when interacting with family. Following the talk there will be a guided meditation.
36:49
November 27, 2018
#17 Reducing Holiday Stress Part I
While the holidays are a time of celebration, they often add more items to our to-do lists. The parties, the gifts, baking and entertaining or the absence of these things can make the holiday season feel stressful or even lonely. In part one of this three part series, I am going to explore how to be mindful in-spite of having more to do during the holidays. I will also discuss practical ways to be mindful when you are a part from family or feeling lonely during the holidays.
29:53
November 20, 2018
# 16 Dissolve Stress in the Present Moment
In this episode I explore how to dissolve stress in the present moment with mindfulness. We can learn how to let go of stress by inviting ourselves into the present moment by giving our full attention to the now. Most of the time, the now if perfectly fine, it is rather the stories we make up about yesterday and tomorrow that keep us trapped in the illusion of our own thoughts. I will discuss practical ways we can break free of this trace with mindfulness. Following the talk there will be a guided meditation. The next several episodes that follow will focus on ways to manage holiday stress.
32:02
November 13, 2018
#15 Let Go of Overthinking
When we analyze past events, negative feelings and plan for possible problems it is easy for us to start ruminating. Rumination is when we become compulsively focused on our distress, its possible causes and potential consequences. This episode will explore who we can let go of rumination and use mindfulness to start living a more joyful life. Following the talk there will be a guided meditation.
36:50
November 5, 2018
#14 Rewire the Brain for Happiness & Decondition Negativity
The brain's number one priority is survival. Our need to stay safe and survive has made us overly sensitive to potential threats. While detecting threats could save our lives under the right conditions, much of what we see as threatening are really just stressful events that don't require an immediate response. This episode will explore the six ways our brains make us vigilant to threats and how we can decondition this response by taking in the good. Following the talk there will be a guided meditation.
34:24
October 29, 2018
#13 Letting Go of Comparison In a Culture That Keeps Score
This episode explores how comparing ourselves to others can get in the way of living our best lives. How many times have you changed your mind about what was important to you, because someone else had a negative opinion? Marcus Aurelius puts it this way “We love ourselves more than other people, but we care about their opinion, more than our own. Be sure to stay tuned for the guided meditation that follows the talk.
31:16
October 22, 2018
#12: Finding the Courage to be Authentic in a World Striving for Perfection
This episode will explore the how to have the courage let go of perfection and be authentic in the face of our fears of being rejected, judged or criticized by others. Being authentic allows us to connect to others, however we cannot share with others who we really are when there is an underlying belief that we are flawed and unworthy. How can we strike a balance between sharing our vulnerabilities and setting healthy boundaries with others? Listen and discover how you can become more mindful and authentic. Be sure to stayed tuned for the guided meditation that follows the talk.
32:46
October 15, 2018
#11: Insights From a Week of Silence
In this episode I provide insights from attending a week-long silent meditation retreat. I will explore the challenges and benefits of silence as a formal mindfulness practice. I will also discuss the importance and benefits of developing and maintaining a regular meditation practice. Following the talk there will be a guided meditation.
39:15
October 8, 2018
#10 Loving the Present Moment
This is a brief episode that explore how to use mindfuness to live in the present moment and love life. There is a brief meditation of breath wish aspects of loving kindness. I apologize for the audio quality as this was recorded in the fly, but valuable.
14:53
September 29, 2018
#9: 5 ways Mindfulness Makes Relationships Happier
In this episode I will explore how to use mindfulness to find more meaning in our relationships. There are so many distractions to pull us away from truly connecting with one another and mindfulness can help us slow down and appreciate each other more. One of the most fundamental ways to show someone we love them is to listen with an open mind and heart.
33:23
September 24, 2018
#8: Being Mindful After Disaster
When someone goes through a disaster or a crisis it can involve emotional trauma related to sudden loss. Having emotional and social support can really made a difference in our long term recovery and well-being. It is comforting when we listen patiently to those who have recently suffered a serious stressful event. We can use mindfulness to remain calm and comforting as we validate their feelings. While disaster can lead to anxiety and depression, there is a lot of research that shows meditation is linked with lower stress levels and increased positivity. In June of 2018 a Thailand boys soccer team that was trapped in a cave for 12 days and their coach reportedly helped them stay calm during this life threatening event by teaching them meditation. In this session I will explore how to use mindfulness & meditation in the aftermath of a disaster. Following the talk there will be a guided meditation.
33:51
September 17, 2018
#7: Four Ways Mindfulness Can Enhance Happiness
In this episode I explore how mindfulness can enhance happiness by interrupting negative thought patterns, improving connections with others, enhancing our ability to have gratitude and providing a sense of well-being. So often we become trapped by the belief that "if I only had" fill in the blank, then I would be happy. The trouble with the logic is that when we get the thing we want to be happy, our happiness does not last. Listen to the episode to find out how to use mindfulness to be happier and healthier. Following the talk there will be a guided meditation.
31:19
September 10, 2018
#6 Being Mindful Through Depression
In this episode I explore how to use mindfulness to reduce sadness & depression. You don't have to be dealing with depression to benefit from this talk. Following the talk there will be a guided meditation. This show is not intended to be a replacement for medical care. Please seek out professional help if you are dealing with depression that is causing suicidal ideation. If you are in crisis please call the National Suicide Hotline at 800-273-8255 or visit crisistext.org and text 741-741 and text "Connect" to get help. If you are in the Charlotte, NC area and are interested in learning more about the 8-week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction course register now for the orientation by clicking on this link https://www.eventbrite.com/e/2018-fall-mbsr-introductory-session-ehc-southpark-tues-pm-tickets-48200476924
32:53
September 4, 2018
Episode 5 Mindfulness & Grief
This episode will explore how we can use mindfulness and other strategies to cope with grief. Following the talk there will be a guided meditation.
29:09
August 27, 2018
Episode 4 Mindfulness & Self Compassion
In this episode I explore how to use mindfulness in life's most difficult moments. Practicing mindfulness helps protect us from becoming burned out and developing compassion fatigue. Following the talk there will be a guided meditation with aspects of loving kindness.
32:16
August 20, 2018
Episode 3 Mindful Parenting & Guided Meditation
In this episode I share a story about a parenting win with mindfulness, but I assure you it is not always that way. I explore how to use mindfulness and empathy in parenting, but also relate this lesson to all of our relationships. Following this brief talk I provide a guided meditation. Links mentioned in the show: http://www.jonathanleague.com/ or https://www.facebook.com/JonathanLeagueLPCC/. The episode of Bulletproof radio that was mentioned was John Medina episode #509.
31:37
August 13, 2018
Episode 2 What is Mindfulness & Meditation?
Mindfulness and meditation will be described during the first 8 minutes of the show followed by a brief talk and guided meditation.
33:14
July 30, 2018
Community Meditation Episode 1
In the episode I cover the basics of mindfulness and provide a guided meditation. The meditation covers awareness of sound, breath and body. Please enjoy!
30:05
July 23, 2018
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