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Orla trained as a clinical psychologist and dramatherapist and also as a community creative dance teacher. Somatic studies and authentic movement has been another area of exploration. Currently she works as a rehabilitation and wellness facilitator in the area of mental health.
Meditation and mindfulness have been important to Orla as far back as she can remember. However it was 30 years ago as a psychology student that she began to meditate more formally. For many years she wished to integrate her practice into her work. Fortunately in the last few decades as science and mindfulness have come into a beautiful and fruitful dialogue, this became possible.
This development brought Orla to train as an MBSR and MBCT teacher with the German Institute for Mindfulness based Approaches. She also completed her training as a mindfulness – based compassionate living (MBCL) teacher with the same institute. Further training includes the practicum in mindfulness- based stress reduction with Saki Santorelli and Florence Meleo Meyer from the University of Massachusetts Medical School.
She has completed a foundational teacher training in Mindful Eating / Conscious Living with Jan Chozen Bays and is a mindful self compassion teacher having trained with Christopher Germer and Kristen Neff. She also has an interest in neuroscience and has attended professional training in Positive neuroplasticity with Rick Hanson.
She is currently a teacher in training with Tai Chi Your Way ( Irish Tai Chi Chuan Association ) and trained as a chi kung and taoist meditation teacher and as a quantum coherence therapist with the same association. Orla attends regular retreats in Dzogchenbeara and has a particular interest in compassion and loving kindness practices and has attended a number of retreats with Sharon Salzberg.
All of these experiences have enhanced Orla’s working and personal life and renewed her desire to share the many benefits of a mindful and compassionate approach to living.
- Mindful Self Compassion online courses