Carisa Benuelos, Meditation Coach
Last March my sister, Erin, received the news that her breast cancer was still present in a lymph node after undergoing over a years time of treatment. We were all floored, confused about why months of chemo and radiation hadn't eradicated the disease. Erin had to find the strength to rally and start her treatment over from the beginning. I knew that she was going to need more support than ever and the only way that I could show up for her in the way she needed me to, was to make sure I was handling my own reaction to this news in a healthy way.
Right around the same time, I was presenting a workshop when I overheard a friend mention her meditation coach. For years I had been trying to deepen my meditation practice. I felt like I was dedicated enough with my practice to see the benefits, but I wanted more, and I didn't quite know how to get there. I was intrigued at the thought of a meditation coach. This could be a really great way to stay clear-headed and calm during this next phase of Erin's treatment. I made an appointment immediately.
Carisa has a quiet space in a neurological remapping practice. I find this kind of work fascinating and I loved that meditation was a strong part of their program. On our first visit, she explained how meditation changes the brain. I had some understanding of how it worked but Carisa really knew how to break it down. She explained the different brain waves and showed me the images of a brain that was constantly in thought vs. a brain that was trained in slowing down and finding a resting state. The visuals were fun, helpful and affirming. We took some time to talk about breathwork and did a short meditation. This was just what I needed.
I decided to commit to her 16-week program. If I was going to get through this as solid support for my sister, I was going to need something to help me not lose my shit and be present with her. We met regularly, meditating for a short while, discussing my progress, and adding in new varieties of meditation I had yet to explore. I did my homework, a daily meditation practice with journaling, and immediately felt more able to manage my stress.
Carisa was a great guide through it all, not only explaining the process but allowing me to take ownership of what works best for me. She is generous in her knowledge, providing links to her guided meditations and offering reading material and a workbook to go along with each week. She put a lot of thought into her meditation program, and her passion for the work shines through.
I have recently completed her program, and though I know that meditation is a life long practice, I feel more equipped than before to handle my stress and anxiety. I can access the inner peace that I need in the midst of stress or fear of the unknown. I am more aware of useless mental chatter and ruminating thoughts and have the tools to slow down and come back to my breath. I also feel a lot more present with my family, friends, and clients. Whereas before, thoughts could really pull me away from fully experiencing a fleeting moment.
We are honored to have Carisa’s support as one of our Preferred Providers for Malas for Tatas. Please enjoy the video below featuring Shannon and Carisa.