Listen to Rae and Shinzen discuss sensory overwhelm and cultivating skillful action while meeting rigorous performance expectations.
February 27, 2019 :: Rae Brosnan
SOME INSIGHTS FROM THIS SESSION:
Ego-spasms and aftershocks: Working with sensory overwhelm, from the interpersonal to the international.
Steps for making positive behavior change.
The key to skillful communication: To feel pleasure and pain in a way that they don’t drive and distort.
Rae Brosnan lives with her family in San Francisco, California. “I love looking at patterns and what is created from the intersection of different streams or tracks,” she said. Her journey from an undergrad degree in literature to her current work as a software designer in the banking industry is one example of that.
In college, I loved comparative literature and seeing new insights by taking a work of literature and combining it with a historical event or with a different mode of expression. For example, if you compare literature to art or to industry or political events, you can see how those elements ripple through the literature--not just the subject matter but the construction of a written body of work and how that reflects society. That is the piece I loved the most.
In her entry-level first job out of college, she saw inefficiencies in the processes and methods in place – so she analyzed the situation and made improvements. Higher ups noticed she was adept with a systems view of things and encouraged her to continue her learning in that direction.
That led me to a master's degree in the field of human-computer interaction. I looked at how the mind works from a cognition and learning perspective, how people create memory, and how people learn things with emerging technologies.
I started my software design career on the user side of things. I thought, “okay, you have a software system, but how do people think about that? How does that communication between a computer and human occur? And how can we ease that communication?”
Given her love of complex systems, it’s no surprise that Rae finds the UM approach to meditation to be a good fit. She began meditating in August 2017 with Michael Taft.
I have suffered from major depression my whole life. I was introduced to meditation by a dear friend and started attending a meditation class in San Francisco with Michael Taft. That's how I learned about Shinzen.
I'm not a spiritual person, so I really resonate with Shinzen and Michael’s more scientific approach to meditation, in terms of neurobiology and brain function. Weaving the history of meditation with a biological examination of meditation makes sense to me.
Rae continues her study and practice with Michael Taft, and, in fact, is on the board of the San Francisco Dharma Collective and active in that community. In addition, she’s been enjoying the Brightmind App. She shared some of the benefits she has seen from her practice.
For one, I'm not on antidepressants at all. Since my husband has also started this practice, we have changed the way we talk through our experiences, both of joy and pleasure as well as of conflict and irritation. It's changed my engagement with my daughter. It has changed how I talk to people at work, as well as just my own singular experience in the world. It just transforms everything for me.
LABOR + DELIVERY OF HER DAUGHTER WAS SO EASY THAT WHEN THE DOCTOR SAID IT WAS OVER, HER RESPONSE WAS, "HUH...I COULD DO THAT ALL OVER AGAIN...!"
SHE WAS SUCH A FITNESS NUT WHEN SHE WAS PREGNANT THAT SHE WANTED TO PLAY A RECORDING OF HER FAVORITE EXERCISE VIDEO DURING HER LABOR + DELIVERY AS MOTIVATION!
HER DAUGHTER HELPED DESIGN HER LATEST TATTOO, DRAWING PARTS OF IT TOGETHER USING A LIGHT BOARD THEY MADE.
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