My Unusual Journey

to mindfulness, joyful music-making and teaching

Mindfulness

My specialty and interest lies in string pedagogy, involving the mindfulness and cognitive approach to teaching violin and other string instruments. In my solo career, I had suffered from a hand injury that lasted a decade. While recovering from the injury, I was introduced to "mindfulness" and learned about how closely human emotions are related to the working of the brain, the body, and the mind; using my own mental practices and exercises, which involve different ways of breathing and brain-imaging away from the instrument, I have been able to help my students and my fellow musician colleagues improve their musical and personal skills and struggles on both technical and musical terms. 

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Since my full recovery in 2016, I have been invited to speak about my healing journey in medical conferences. Being musicians, a lot of our physical struggles stem from the mental state of our mind -- our perfectionist traits, the competitive culture, and our self-sabotaging habits on our instruments -- and this mind-game is real. Instead of taking care of what really matters -- our emotions, traumas, and other inner struggles -- we continue to go about our practicing and performing unmindfully. The awareness of the mind is the kind of practice that we should all aim for in a practice room or even on a concert stage while the action is on. When we uncover the layers of different emotions we naturally attain and be mindful of them -- yes, just noticing that they exist -- will help us understand our mind and overcome our struggles with joy and gladness.

In my teaching, I focus on instilling a sense of joy and confidence in each student's unique identity as a musician and a person by connecting to their musical and emotional needs on a personal level. I ask lots of questions, and students and I discuss together what is at the core of the emotion(s) they are feeling at the very moment and/or before they enter the "lesson door" because a lot of musical and -- believe it or not -- technical struggles stem from the state of the mind. By bringing students to the awareness of their body and emotional sensations through engaging conversations, I help them connect to music and their inner-self, which leads them to finding the inner peace, which we all naturally strive for. It is my greatest joy to be able to share what I have discovered and witness others join the world of joyful music-making!

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