May 14 & 15 – Mindfulness


2-Day Advanced Mindfulness Skills: Effective Tools to Rewire the Brain


Workshop Information

Date: Monday and Tuesday,  May 14 & 15, 2018 – Sign-In: 8:30am – Workshop: 9:00am-4:00pm

Location: MCEA Conference Center: 12 Taft Ct, Rockville, MD

Cost:     $315 early registration through April 14 – LUNCH INCLUDED!

 $345 late registration after April 14

**$300 Group Registration for groups of 3 or more**

Presenter: Deborah Norris, Ph.D. and Aurora Hutchinson, M.A.

CEU Credits: 12 Social Work Category 1 Maryland and DC CEUs**

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Presenter Bios


Dr. Norris is the is the author of “In the Flow: Bridging the Science and Practice of Mindfulness,” and Founder and President of The Mindfulness Center ( In addition to onsite training programs, Dr. Norris provides online community-based programs in mindfulness, including SOMA, The Science of Mindful Awareness: Meditation Teacher Certification, and other mobile-health programs. She is a health scientist and pioneer in the field of mindfulness with over 40 years of experience in education, research and programming. Also an innovative businesswoman, Dr. Norris leads a team of over 50 therapists, health care providers, faculty members, researchers, business and development personnel, board members and volunteers toward a new healthcare paradigm. The community health programs led by Dr. Norris and conducted in collaboration with The Mindfulness Center and area hospitals, businesses, government agencies, schools and non-profits represent the forefront of integrative healthcare, empowering community members to live healthier, more mindful and fulfilling lives. Dr. Norris has a B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. in psychology/psychopharmacology. She is the Founder and Director of the Psychobiology of Healing program and Psychologist-in-Residence in the Department of Psychology at American University. Dr. Norris teaches and conducts research in behavioral medicine, and other complementary and integrative approaches to wellbeing. She has conducted research at the  Veterans Affairs Medical Center and the Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, D.C. Dr. Norris is trained extensively in mind-body therapies, ranging from traditional medical and psychotherapeutic practices to holistic and integrative therapies and lifestyle practices.



Aurora Hutchinson, M.A. is the Mindfulness Programs Director at The Mindfulness Center, and serves as a faculty member of the resident Meditation Teacher Training program and SOMA, The Science of Mindful Awareness: Meditation Teacher Certification online training, teaching meditation and wellness classes. She teaches group classes, conducts corporate seminars and works with individual clients seeking to learn meditation for stress management, improved health, career and family support. Aurora is certified as a SOMA meditation teacher, and is also an iRest Yoga Nidra Level 1 Teacher-in-Training working towards certification. She has a professional background in DoD and scientific program management, with an emphasis on research, policy interpretation, and technical and scientific writing. Aurora is also trained in Clinical Hypnosis through the American Society of Clinical Hypnosis, a certified Reiki practitioner, and a yoga teacher in training. Her passion as a scientist, teacher and practitioner is in promoting and practicing evidence-based, best practices of self-care in hospitals, wellness centers, educational and corporate settings, to empower and serve others.


Workshop Description

Mindfulness practices are rapidly being incorporated into healthcare plans and therapeutic protocols for the treatment of numerous clinical conditions.  Mindfulness is now recognized as a first-line treatment in the standard of care for the treatment of pain, according to the Centers for Disease Control and the Department of Veterans Affairs.  This workshop will provide you with an in-depth look at the research behind the growing interest in mindfulness therapies, and an opportunity to experience the elements of the practice that are having the most profound effect on well-being.

Decades of research create a compelling evidence-basis for the use of mindfulness therapies for the treatment of mental and physical health conditions, including pain, anxiety, PTSD, heart disease and many others.  In this program we will explore the effects of mindfulness on neuroplastic mechanisms of the brain, the biochemical balance of hormones and neurotransmitters, and even the epigenetic mechanism by which mindfulness practices can affect oncology care, and according to researchers, potentially the health of generations to come.

Using the same methods that they teach in their onsite and online Meditation Teacher Certification programs, Dr. Norris and Aurora Hutchinson will guide you in exploring the experiential dimension of meditation, recognizing the most potent elements of the practice that may elicit the healing response.  These practice tools include the use of the breath, overcoming resistance, the role of awareness in self-regulation and the power of the mind, belief and the placebo effect to transform the therapeutic process.

Workshop Objectives

1.To learn the mechanisms of action of meditation and related mind-body therapies.

2. To understand the evidence-basis for clinical applications of meditation and related mind-body therapies.

3. To understand the implications and applications of meditation and related mind-body therapies in health care.

4. To experience the use of mindfulness techniques in a group and one-on-one setting to facilitate growth and change.



Workshop Agenda

Day 1 Agenda


Day 2 Agenda

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** Maryland CEU Institute/Optimal Life Solutions, LLC is an approved sponsor of the Maryland Board of Social Work Examiners (under the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene) for continuing education credits (Category 1 CEUs). Our workshops are also approved for credit through the DC Board of Social Work.  Acceptance of these credits are granted for all trainings by The Maryland Board of Examiners of Psychologists and Maryland Board of Examiners of Professional Counselors through the MD Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.  These credits are also accepted by The Virginia Board of Social Work, the West Virginia Board of Social Work Examiners as well and other state boards.  Our CEU Credit Page provides detailed information about Social Work credit acceptance for the above mental health professionals.  For those individuals licensed in other states or other licensing boards, we suggest that you contact your licensing board to verify that they accept Maryland Social Work Category I Credits or DC Social Work Credits. **