Fall 2024 MBSR Registration Open
8 weeks of intentional, authentic living
If you could take a class that reduces your toxic perceived stress by 35% in 8 weeks, would you?
Of Allison’s MBSR graduates, 85% reduce their toxic stress by an average of 35%.
Although stress is at the cause of many physical illnesses and psychological disorders, it is not often diagnosed or treated at the root level. There are very few resources that effectively treat stress as a condition. MBSR is an 8-week intensive, non-sectarian course, backed by over 40 years of research, proven to reduce the symptoms of stress and anxiety. Taught by a certified MBSR instructor and utilizing curriculum developed by Jon Kabat-Zinn, PhD at UMASS Center for Mindfulness, this non-clinical (i.e. not group therapy) course is designed to teach mind-body awareness, recognize and put to use our inner psychological resources to respond to toxic stress, increase stress hardiness, focus, creativity, regulate emotions, and allow a greater sense of self-care and well-being. No prior mindfulness or meditation experience necessary.
Open to adults, 18 and over, who are committed to self-exploration and self-care.
What is MBSR?
Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction sits on over four decades of research. It is based in experiential learning, meditation, and teaches how to respond more wisely to stress. It is taught in a universal, secular, group setting.
MBSR is the most scientifically researched mindfulness program available.
INCREASE MENTAL PERFORMANCE
MBSR may lead to structural changes in the brain that can increase mental performance.
Respond wisely rather than react habitually to stressors and difficulty.
Cultivate self-awareness, improve communication skills and improve self-analysis skills.
Fall 2024 Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Program
Required Orientation: Tuesday, September 3, 2024 6:00-7:30pm
Class Dates & Times: Tuesday evenings 6:00-8:30pm: Sept 10, 2024 - Oct 29, 2024 (Sept 10, 17, 24, Oct 1, 8, 15, 22, 29)
Location: Central Fellowship Hall: 3829 Grand Ave, Des Moines, IA 50312
Day of Mindfulness Silent Retreat: Sunday, October 20, 2024 – 9:00am-3:00pm
Retreat Location February 17th: Raccoon River Nature Lodge: 2500 Grand Ave, West Des Moines, IA. Guest yoga teacher: TBD
Classes focus on the experiential cultivation of both “formal” and “informal” mindfulness practices such as gentle yoga, mindful movement, and meditation as a foundation for the cultivation of psychological and emotional resilience that can be effectively utilized across the adult life span. The group meets once per week for 8 weeks for 2.5 hours. Each participant is expected to complete assigned home practice on their own, such as meditation, body scan, yoga, the other 6 days per week for about 30-45 minutes per day. Students must have access to internet and have technology that will play guided audio recording files via Dropbox and/or Google Drive. Attendance is taken each class meeting. One teacher lead, silent Day of Mindfulness retreat experience is included to deepen the practice of seamless, meditative awareness (approx. 6 hours: 9am-3pm). This is held on a weekend day following week 5 or 6 class. Learn more below under FAQ’s.
$395 per person (approx. $14 per class time hour – 26 total hours class time.)
* Use coupon code: MBSR20 to save $20 on tuition before Aug 20, 2024
Continuing Education Opportunities
Teachers in Iowa: 15 contact hours – 1 License Renewal Credit through Heartland AEA
Mental Health Professionals, Social Workers: 20 contact hours – 20 CEUs
Clergy, Spiritual Directors: 20 contact hours – 2 CEUs
Cancellation and Refund Policy
Cancellations made 7 or more days prior to date of first class: Full fee is transferable for use within 6 months from session start date.
Cancellations made 24 to 72 hours prior to date of first class: 50% of full fee is transferable for use within 6 months from session start date.
Less than 24 hours notice prior to date of first class, no shows, and withdrawing mid-class: Full fee is forfeited.
We must have at least 12 participants to host a class and no more than 18 (If minimum is not reached, and the class needs to cancel, students will get a full refund.)
If you pay via the online credit card system or Paypal and you request a refund, From Within Wellness, LLC will refund you the total amount less a 3% surcharge fee for credit card processing.
Catch our story:
Channel 13 with Erin Kiernan
Allison Peet is a certified Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) Instructor trained at UMass Center for Mindfulness, founded by Jon Kabat-Zinn, PhD and the Mindfulness Center at Brown University. She is trained through Mindful Schools and is a certified Buteyko Breathing Method instructor and registered yoga instructor (RYT200). She’s taught since 2015 and hundreds have graduated from her MBSR program. Based on a pre and post self-evaluation, 85% of grads lowered their perceived stress, and reduced stress levels an average of 35%. Allison completes multiple week-long silent meditation retreats and has a regular practice. The cultivation of mindfulness transformed her relationship with stress and anxiety which motivated her to start her own business in 2015, From Within Wellness, to benefit others.
Especially during these challenging times of COVID-19, when we are separated by space and the unknown, Allison Peet’s MBSR course creates a place to come together in the spirit of mindfulness. Her creativity in providing the course content safely via zoom has been invaluable to our group. This course is for anyone who has even the slightest inclination to explore non medicinal ways to cope with the anxiety, stress, and even the physical pain of a cancer diagnosis and its treatment. It is for anyone who wants to feel better in their own skin. It is for those who seek a greater sense of calm and peace in their life. I did not expect it to be so impactful! Thank you Allison!
Spring 2020 Graduate
Out of all the wellness classes I have taken, I’ve never felt like my time and money was more well spent on this class! Thank you!
Summer 2018 Graduate
“As a fellow at the University of Arizona’s Andrew Weil Center for Integrative Medicine, I learned a bit about MBSR and the profound effect mindfulness can have on health and healing but never had the opportunity to experience the class itself. As 19 others and myself gathered for our first class there was a clear sense of anxiety in the air. “Is this right for me?”, “I feel so anxious.”, “How can I sit quietly for 20 minutes?”, “Will this really impact my life?” Fast-forward 8 weeks and the feelings are totally different. There is a palpable sense of collective calm and a completely different perspective on the true meaning of living. No longer are the people in the class constrained by their self-defeating thoughts and beliefs. They now exude a sense of calm, peace and control of their lives. They now understand how to turn stress from a threat to their lives into a challenge to be embraced. This course is a must for anyone who wishes to reframe how he or she thinks about themselves as well as the world around them. Truly life changing.”
- Dr. Andrew Nish,
Medical Director of the
John Stoddard Cancer Center
Spring 2020 Graduate
I am a multiple myeloma patient. Multiple myeloma is a blood cancer that affects the bone marrow. Living with cancer is never easy. MBSR provides tools to cope with the new reality of life with cancer. MBSR helped me establish a personal practice of mindfulness, meditation and yoga to deal with the cancer and its treatment. The mindfulness and meditation helped reduce the anxiety and pain associated with cancer. The gentle yoga helped me restore my body from the side effects of treatment.
Summer 2019 Graduate
I took the Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction course with Allison and discovered safety within my own body, for the first time since my painful, chronic illness took hold. Over an eight-week period, she guided walking meditations, body scans and other mindfulness practices that I will use long after the class is over. I cannot recommend her and the MBSR course enough!
Frequently asked Questions
WHAT IS THE TIME COMMITMENT?
The group meets once per week for 8 weeks for 2.5 hours. Each student is expected to complete assigned home practice on their own, such as meditation, body scan, yoga, the other 6 days per week for about 30-45 minutes per day. There is also a “retreat class” where the students are silent and put to use what is learned in class. It is usually held on a Saturday between week 5-7 that is approximately 6 hours long. There is a total of about 26 hours of in-person class time during the course. The bar is set high, but is NOT unreachable if you view this as a challenge you can meet with acceptance and some discipline. Please make sure you can devote time with and for yourself to get the most out of this program as there is much to learn from the daily, consistent practice. Students must also have internet access and technology that will play audio recordings via Dropbox links or Google Drive.
DO I NEED TO HAVE PRIOR EXPERIENCE?
No. When Allison first took the course for personal reasons, she had never practiced meditation before. (The time at the end of community yoga classes during “Savasana” when one lies down on the mat to be still for a few minutes was excruciating for her because she didn’t know how to be still. Her mind was wild and it was uncomfortable because she didn’t have tools to work with her mind. This course changed her perception of the importance and requirement of stillness.) This class is for complete beginners and those that have meditation experience. You can be skeptical. What’s important is that you come with an open heart and mind, ready for self-exploration.
WHAT WILL I LEARN?
• How to stabilize and focus attention to use internal psychological resources for greater well-being.
• Identify Automatic Habitual Stress Reactivity and Mindfulness Mediated Stress Responding, to respond more wisely to stressful events.
• How to work skillfully with difficult emotions, thoughts, and unpleasant physical sensations.
• Techniques to respond more wisely to stressful events and difficult communication.
• Recognize judgement, bias, negative thought patterns and reactivity in a more non-judgmental, engaged manner by cultivating self-compassion, embodied presence, empathy and acceptance.
• Create a personal, on-going mindfulness meditation and/or self-care practice.
DO I HAVE TO ATTEND ALL CLASSES?
Short answer: Yes. Because of the participatory nature of this training, it is imperative that you be present for all of it. Of course, life situations arise, but as you enter the training, please ensure that you have cleared your schedule so you can participate in all sessions of the training. Each class builds on the one prior, both in practice and in content; if you miss one or more classes, it can be difficult to keep up, so it’s expected that you attend as many as possible. However, I understand that emergencies happen. We work on absences on a case-by-case basis. In my experience, students that commit to themselves by attending all classes, especially the retreat, and completing the home practice assignments have the largest reduction of perceived stress and a greater increase overall well-being than students that miss classes.
IS THIS CLASS RELIGIOUS?
No. MBSR is taught in a non-sectarian, universal and mainstream manner. Mindfulness is being purposefully aware of what is arising in your experience, moment by moment, without being hijacked by mental content. People of any (or no) religion, gender, and lifestyle are respected and welcome.
I’M NOT FLEXIBLE, WHAT’S THE YOGA LIKE?
Mindful yoga is not a “workout”… it’s a “work-in”. It’s not about getting more flexible or attaining a special mind state….it’s a very gentle practice. It’s a vehicle for self-discovery; how to live in your body more fully, rather than living from the neck up. Through mindful movement, we learn to listen to the body’s communication style and be aware of physical tension more readily so we can tend to ourselves fully, without being overly aggressive. You are the expert of your own experience, so postures can be modified or skipped depending on your condition. Allison offers as many modifications as necessary.
WHAT MAKES ALLISON UNIQUE FROM OTHER CERTIFIED INSTRUCTORS?
You receive a hard copy Home Practice Journal to support your practice. (Electronic version is available as well for those outside the US.)
Full access to Allison during the course via email, phone and/or text for questions about how your practice is going.
You fill out a stress self-evaluation before and after the course to see how it helped you.
During class 8, you write a reflection based on your learnings and discoveries. After you send it back to Allison, she keeps it for a few months and mails it back to you (US only) as a letter to yourself, from yourself.
Once you become an MBSR graduate, you're invited back to future all-day silent MBSR retreats. Other graduate opportunities include book study, refresher courses, and half day silent retreats.
MBSR is as effective as Lexapro (anti-anxiety medication) in reducing symptoms
A study published in JAMA Psychiatry "took 276 adults diagnosed with untreated anxiety disorders such as generalized anxiety, panic disorder, or social anxiety, and split them into two randomized groups. One group received a 10 to 20 mg daily dose of Lexapro – a standard beginning dose and the other half was assigned to weekly two-and-a-half hour mindfulness classes at a local clinic — using an approach called Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction — plus 45 minutes of daily meditation homework for eight weeks, as well as a day-long retreat around week five or six. The study participants who took the drugs and those who participated in the meditation program were evaluated at the end of eight weeks using the same clinical scale, and both groups showed about a 20% reduction in the severity of their symptoms."
MINDFULNESS MEDITATION PRODUCES POSITIVE CHANGES IN THE BRAIN
Dr. Richard Davidson, Dr. Jon Kabat Zinn, and colleagues examined the effects of the 8-week MBSR program with employees at a biotech company. The electrical activity in each participant’s frontal area of the brain was measured before and after the course and 4 months later. Research found that the meditation group had significant increases in activity in the left side of the brain’s frontal area that is associated with positive affect (experiencing positive emotions) and emotion regulation. This allows people to recover more quickly from a stressful event. At the end of the MBSR program, all participants were given flu vaccine. Those who meditated had significant increases in antibodies compared to the control group, suggesting that mindfulness meditation can help boost the immune response.
MINDFULNESS KEEPS THE BRAIN YOUNG
Using MRI brain scans, Dr. Sara Lazar and colleagues found thicker regions in the frontal cortex, an area responsible for reasoning and decision making, in those that had a consistent meditation practice compared to those who didn’t. She also found a thicker insula, which is involved in sensing internal sensations and thought to be critical in perceiving emotional feelings. She suggested that because the cortex and insula normally start deteriorating after age 20, mindfulness meditation may help keep the brain younger. She believes “meditation can have a serious impact on your brain long beyond the time when you’re actually sitting and meditating, and this may have a positive impact on your day-to-day living.”
EFFECT OF A BRIEF MINDFULNESS-BASED PROGRAM ON STRESS IN HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONALS
“This randomized clinical trial found that this brief mindfulness-based intervention was an effective and feasible means to reduce stress in health care professionals.”
“Mindfulness-based interventions were associated with a reduction in anxiety and depression in adults with cancer. ”
“Mindfulness-based stress reduction did not improve migraine frequency more than headache education, as both groups had similar decreases; however, MBSR improved disability, quality of life, self-efficacy, pain catastrophizing, and depression out to 36 weeks, with decreased experimentally induced pain suggesting a potential shift in pain appraisal. In conclusion, MBSR may help treat total migraine burden.”