Webinar: A Mindful Journey into the Kaleidoscopic Landscape of Dyslexia
This session will explore the benefits of practicing mindfulness for those with dyslexia.
Wednesday 18th September 2019
7:30pm - 8:30pm
Neurobiological evidence shows that mindfulness breathing and meditation regulates the nervous system and balances the brain’s stress chemicals. In this session, Deborah Shaer will be focusing on mindfulness meditation as it relates to impact embodying the diverse and mystifying anatomy of Dyslexia. The classic traits such as words spelled incorrectly and grammatical errors are only the tip of a wider spectrum linked with dyslexic characteristics.For example, Deborah believes difficulties in writing cohesive sentences, could be likened to a garden filled with flowers entangled by an over-growth of weeds. For the dyslexic, this wild garden may feel familiar yet daunting, causing unmanageability and confusion. By contrast, the non-dyslexic person’s brain is equipped with the inner resources to discern and apply a logical and rational plan and structure whether it be a garden, an essay, a report, sequencing, turning a door knob the correct way, or inserting a key.
Deborah believes a person with dyslexic features is constantly being challenged. He or she may suddenly experience disorientation and become lost due to a chaotic sense of direction, getting on the wrong train, going in the opposite direction, getting off the wrong stop and being terribly late. Or being terribly early or arriving at an appointment on the wrong day because words and numbers are subject to looking different from one day to the next.
Deborah believes seeing the world through a kaleidoscope lens may mean that some people don’t get who you are, but others will. Dyslexia doesn’t make sense because if we do something repeatedly, then we should retain the information. It may be that the automatic response functions normally for a while, but suddenly disconnects. And anxiety often gets triggered.
She feels therefore anxiety can escalate and even turn into a full-blown panic attack when fear is present. Being subjected to toxic shaming over time from insensitive others erodes one’s self-confidence and self-esteem. A first step is to be in contact with your feelings as a way in to deepen self-awareness and this can be channelled through mindfulness. Clinical research has shown that dyslexia has nothing to do with stupidity, it is a condition that needs tender loving care to flourish, just like a neglected garden.
Deborah suggests that mindfulness breathing, meditation and visualisation is an effective way to calm and clear out the cumulative effects of toxicity from others. Moreover, instead of trying to fight dyslexia, an alternative approach could be to embrace each dyslexic challenge. So even when the body, the brain and the emotions are out of synch, you just become aware. Instead of trying to move faster, slow down, pause, breathe consciously, slowly, deeply to allow more oxygen to your brain. Taking a few moments to self-regulate can make a significant improvement in cognition.
However, explaining mindfulness is vastly difference to experiencing it. Deborah's aim is to reach those who are experiencing difficulty in managing dyslexia and to promote awareness. Deborah believes that parents of children with dyslexia, teachers, Local Authorities and the Department of Education may find this session beneficial.
Our Presenter: Deborah Shaer
Deborah spent ten years travelling back and forth from England to India developing her meditation and mindfulness practice. She has a background in teaching English to students of other languages (ESOL). Her work is experiential, exploring innovative and creative ways to teach how to learn and to bring an awareness to individuals who struggle with learning.
Whilst teaching, Deborah was also studying and training. She qualified as a child and adolescent counsellor and therapist, working with children and young people in school settings. Many of her clients had been clinically diagnosed with dyslexia, so her experience with this client base has provided her with an in-depth understanding of the impact psychologically, emotionally and mentally. She introduced mindfulness to schools over six years ago and has facilitated mindfulness meditation groups for adolescents and also on wellbeing days with teachers since then.
Deborah has a private practice in north London and also specialises in the therapeutic use of the arts and play as well as psycho-education, CBT and mindfulness meditation. Her work is integrative, creative and transpersonal, with the latter relating to mindfulness, and supporting her young clients to be in contact with their sense of Self and True Nature. She is also a Reiki practitioner.
Her qualifications include: BA (Hons) in Humanities with Creative Writing, Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL); Diploma in therapeutic counselling specialising in adolescents and the use of the arts and play; MA in Child, Adolescent and Family Therapy; Level I and Level 2 in Reiki, and has almost completed her Complimentary Medicine Diploma embodied in her advanced Reiki practitioner’s course, which will also qualify her to work with NHS patients to enhance a speedier recovery.
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