Mindfulness For Life Balance II: Effects, Misconceptions, and Social Interpretations

Mindfulness For Life Balance II: Effects, Misconceptions, and Social Interpretations

    Dear Fashion Potluck Community,

    In our previous podcast about Mindfulness with Marjorie Lumet, we have touched upon the basics, practices, and benefits of mindfulness. In this podcast session, we are diving deeper in the topic, to see a different perspective of another mindfulness coach - Anouk Bleijenberg. With Anouk, we have discussed the effects, misconceptions, and social interpretations of mindfulness. Happy Listening!

    Una [00:00:00]: Hello everyone and welcome to the Fashion Potluck podcast session. Fashion Potluck is a women driven platform where women can post, engage, and interact with each other. My name is Una, I am the Content Manager of fashion potluck and I’m here with Julia,  the Chief Marketing Officer of Fashion Potluck! Hello! Hello! And our guest for today – Anouk Bleijenberg, from the Your Next Chapter, a Mindfulness Coach. Hello! Welcome! So today we're going to continue talking about mindfulness and to introduce yourself Anouk, could you tell us a bit more how you got into mindfulness? How has it helped you, and what are you doing at the moment?

    Anouk [00:00:38]: Yes, of course, I can. So, mindfulness for me started I think in 2014. I was in San Diego, I was traveling, and before that, I already did some yoga. That's where it actually started. I kind of hated yoga.

    Julia [00:00:55]: But for what reason?

    Anouk [00:01:01] Yeah I thought it was a little,  I don't know - There is this Dutch word, and you know, it’s more like spiritual, and I was not there yet. I was not there, and it didn't work for me. Maybe I had a teacher and I just didn't fit in with. But in 2014 I had a yoga class in San Diego, and that actually touched me. So, there it started, and yes, I started crying, of course, you know it happens sometimes, and from that point on I was like ‘Yeah- maybe now I need to focus on yoga and see what it does to me’.

    I was in the middle of burnout back then, I was studying, I was having this great social life, I was working part-time, so it was a lot of things altogether. And also, some emotional parts kind of helped me get into this burnout. So, from that yoga class on, I was like ‘hey, I have to do something with this’. So, I started to do yoga teacher training when I got back from San Diego here in Amsterdam. It was really nice, I was one of the youngest, so most people were like 40 years and above. But still, it was great. I learned a lot there and that's also where I learned a lot about mindfulness and about meditation, which is also part of mindfulness. This is what we discussed before. Going back to this, this is where it's where it started actually.

    Una [00:02:55]: Interesting. But what do you find most inspiring about your practice?

    Anouk [00:02:42] The most inspiring for me is that, whenever you take this step back, what mindfulness is for me - taking a step back, and realize where you are at the moment,  it helps you also figure out what you want to do in the future. So, for me, it's very important to listen to my body for example, and I think it's important for everyone, but not everyone is there yet of course. But for me, it really helps if I can take a step back, do some yoga, meditation, mindfulness, make sure that all my thoughts are really clear, and the direction I want to go to.It just comes at itself like, if you take a step back, it comes at itself. And you can just start living your life again after stressful situations.

    Una [ 00:03:28]: You say, ‘listening to your body’. How do you do that? 

    Anouk [00:03:33]: Actually for me,  that's first doing exercises. So that's yoga, or for some people, it's going running. I also go running sometimes, just to clear your mind a little bit. And that's also maybe a good thing to say. Some people, with mindfulness, they want to clear their minds like totally, they don't want to think about anything. That's not what it is. Because thoughts,  they come, they come and they go, so they will always be there.

    Julia [00:04:05]: And so, are you basically observing them?

    Anouk [00:04:08]: Yeah, exactly yeah. If you try to clear your mind fully, that's just not going to work because then you're just focused on that, and then all the other thoughts, they will come later, because they will come at a certain point.

    Julia[00:04:21] And, what are you doing right now? Because you are a mindfulness coach, so tell us a little bit more about this.

    Anouk[00:04:29] Yes! What I do is I coach people who experience a high-stress level or who experienced the burnout, or sometimes they are even in the middle of a burnout.

    So what I try to do is, I try to guide them towards the kind of different life, where they can handle the stress, because normally if people are totally stressed out and have a burnout already,  they have to change something. And it's easier has to do with their thoughts and emotions or it can be something they are doing like work for example if it's not a good fit with their personality. Sometimes you just figure it out later. 

    Sometimes, you start a job and then two years later you know ‘hey, this is not going to work for me’. Then you have to change your life and every time when there is a change in life, people struggle. And that's OK. We all struggle. We all struggle in life. But I help them with these mindfulness exercises also to get back on track and get back to a new life, or adjusted life, for example, which is a better fit for them than before.

    Julia [00:05:36]:  Yeah. That's really interesting because I think there are so many people with a burnout now.  Even on, I think it was BuzzFeed, I read an article that Millennials are the biggest burnout generation. Like, people didn't have that many burnouts, like never before. So that's quite interesting.

    Una [00:05:50] Or maybe it's just more talked about now, you know.

    Julia [ 00:05:55] Yeah, maybe, I don't know.  Maybe they just didn’t know this was a burnout, maybe they thought it was a lifestyle. But currently like, every, I don't remember in numbers,  but many, like thousands and more, Millennials are experiencing burnout especially, it was obviously about the Western World, but still and I think it's really great that we're actually doing this podcast right now because maybe we can actually help people understand at least that they have a burnout, and that maybe they should do something about it.

    Una [00:06:29] Yeah yeah. But it's interesting because I also feel that people who are older they usually practice mindfulness and do you feel like younger people practice mindfulness? It may be more yoga.

    Anouk [00:06:41] Yeah I do. They start doing that, for every person it is different.

    Listen to the full podcast in the player above.

    Anouk's books & app recommendations:
     Mindful Games - Susan Kaiser Greenland

    Mindfulness - Thich Nhat Hanh, Nhat Hanh

    The app Head Space  

    About Anouk:

    Anouk is a mindfulness coach and the owner of Your Next Chapter in Amsterdam. 

    Her Life Goal is guiding people to find their way to connect with themselves and others, build and retain valuable relationships and keep on moving so that the world is filled with more happy, light and confident people. She achieves this by Coaching and organizing Workshops at organizations.

    Connect with Anouk through her LinkedIn profile, or visit Your Next Chapter for more information. 

    *Disclaimer: The purpose of this podcast is to educate and to inform. It is no substitute for professional care by a doctor or other qualified professional. Statements made by Fashion Potluck's guests and speakers do not reflect Fashion Potluck's views and are shared as personal opinions of interviewed individuals.

    If you have any questions, feedback, or suggestions regarding our podcasts, email us at inspire@fashionpotluck.com.


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