Episode 24 — Mindfulness 101 with Neuroscientist, Artist, and Meditation Guide Nkechi Njaka

In this episode, Black Girl In Om Founder Lauren Ash and Art Director Deun Ivory explore the question what is mindfulness? with neuroscientist, multi-disciplinary artist and integrated lifestylist Nkechi Njaka. Nkechi has spent the majority of her life investigating the relationship between the brain and the body and has always felt the significance of their integration. For several years, Nkechi worked as a neuroscientist as well as a professional modern dancer and choreographer. Through this work, she discovered that mindfulness and creativity are crucial for sustaining individual and global wellbeing. Both Lauren and Deun have been intentionally cultivating mindfulness practices, have benefited from them, and add their insights to this conversation. This episode offers valuable revelations for anyone interested in starting a mindfulness practice inclusive of mindful meditation, mindful movement, and integrated mindfulness through everyday activities. Continue along with Nkechi on her journey by visiting her website www.ndnlifestylestudio.com, Instagram @ndnlifestylist and Twitter @nkechinjaka.

This episode is sponsored by Thrive Market, a membership community that uses the power of direct buying to deliver the world’s best healthy food and natural products to their members at wholesale prices, and to sponsor free memberships for low-income American families. Thrive Market's mission is to make healthy living easy, accessible and affordable for everyone.  For everyone that signs up to become a member, Thrive Market donates a free membership to a family in need, teacher or veteran. Thrive Market is gifting BGIO listeners with 25% off their first purchase, free shipping, and a free 30 day trial using code BGIO.

IN THIS EPISODE, YOU’LL FIND OUT ABOUT:

  • How Deun recently practiced mindfulness and maintained perspective in the midst of challenging circumstances

  • How Lauren was intentionally present and mindful on a recent wellness trip and how that intentionality shaped her experience

  • How Nkechi developed from a young girl who used dance as a tool for easing anxiety, into an expert using movement and neuroscience as the foundation for her current work in mindfulness

  • How mindfulness and mindful meditation can transform your health and Nkechi’s personal experience transforming prior physiological reactions to stress using a mindfulness meditation sitting practice

  • The value of embracing ease -- resonating with what we spoke about in episode 20 with Hey Fran Hey

  • The difference between meditating and incorporating an intentional integration of mind and body (turning mindfulness into a lifestyle)

  • How Lauren has been recently experiencing a radical change of perspective as a result of her regular mindful meditation practice

  • How Nkechi recommends establishing a joy, and a ritual, when creating mindfulness into a practice

  • The simple way Nkechi recommends simply getting started. (Guess what: it’s easy, and accessible!)

  • How Nkechi responds to the common misconception that your mind is “supposed” to get completely silent during meditation

  • How to cultivate mindfulness in your space and how and why tangible things hold energy within your space (in reference to Nkechi’s article “Combating Fears of Abundance” and Lauren’s recent experience with the KonMari method)

  • Nkechi’s new brand Sitting Matters which offers beautiful and thoughtful meditation seats that elevate the home practice. Note that they are offering BGIO listeners a discount using code "BGIO" for $15 off shipping. 

 

“A mindfulness practice is what we’re doing day to day; an integrated approach of being present” — @nkechinjaka Click to Tweet

“I became mindful of the blessings and abundance around me, instead of blowing things out of proportion” —@deunivory #BGIO Click to Tweet

“I am here to be self-compassion and self-forgiveness” — @hellolaurenash #BGIO Click to Tweet

“Your perspective is your reality.” — @deunivory #BGIO Click to Tweet