This February, we are exploring the topic of Mindfulness through blog posts and events, including the Tuesday, Feb 13 Hivery Circle, where a group of multidimensional speakers will take The Hivery stage in a TED-style evening. We look forward to welcoming Gina Vance, CCHT, who will start us off with an Opening Mind/Body Meditation and lead us into our panel of featured guests:
Alejandra Siroka, M.A., Founder of Language Alchemy™
Bristol Baughan, Executive Producer, Author, Executive Coach, Founder of Inner Astronauts
Marlene Caldes, Life Strategist, Urban Mystic, Founder of InnerVoice Network
Nisha Moodley, Women’s Leadership Coach, Creator of Soul of Leadership, Founder of Global Sisterhood Day
We recently had the opportunity to sit down in advance of the event with two of our featured panelists—Bristol Baughan and Nikola Love—and we are excited to share their stories and insights with you!
Hi Bristol! We would love it if you could tell us a little about your background.
Growing up, I was really ambitious. I was on a mission to change the world and ended up working at the White House and then moving to L.A. to make movies. My idea was that if I could make a film that inspired and engaged people, it would make change. I led with an energy of achievement until I was around 29 years old.
What happened then?
I got depressed and burned out, and decided to take a break and travel. People said I was crazy. From the outside, it looked like I was living this fabulous life, but the truth was, I was working myself into the ground and didn’t have any self-care. I was sacrificing myself on the altar of doing for others. It was then that I had to question the beliefs that were unconsciously running my mind.
What has happened since you quit?
It’s been an experiment of me trying to discover what practices help me feel a sense of connection and aliveness. Meditation has helped. I’ve been on a mission to find my heart and my soul and discover what the hell that even means. It’s taken me to India and Thailand, among other places. Since then, I’ve gotten my masters degree in spiritual psychology, created a one-woman play called Judge-A-Holic about my road to recovery, started writing blogs and created Inner Astronauts, where I coach groups of women as well as do one-on-one coaching. About six months ago, I dreamt that I wanted to be in the redwoods and decided to move to Marin from LA.
What advice can you offer to women who want to get into mindfulness but feel a little intimidated?
I recommend setting easy goals. Start by meditating two minutes per week. Even that can be really powerful. There are tons of apps out there to help, but it’s like dating—you want to find the practice that helps you feel connected and alive. I think it’s all about starting to question the panic in our minds and asking: What is the mind so afraid will happen if we slow down and observe it? Often the answer will lead to freedom.
It's so wonderful to meet you, Nikola! Please tell us about your background.
Sure! I’m based in Los Angeles and own Special Place Productions with my husband. We do both film, photography and art. I did my training in sacred commerce, communications, and film. I really love motion imagery and storytelling, but when we first started out, we found that we didn’t feel aligned with a lot of the work we were getting on things like commercials, so we decided to create a production company aligned with our mission statement of doing
good and spreading beauty and positivity
in the world.
What are you working on now?
We are working on our 3D scanning company, as well as on art, music videos, marketing promotional videos, and we’re really excited about transitioning into creating in the virtual reality space with a conscious mindset.
What do you mean by “a conscious mindset?”
I find that a lot of work in the VR space—be it games or movies—revolves around violence. We are dedicated to making beautiful things with VR; right now we’re working on a project relating to our spiritual connection with animals and the environment.
How does mindfulness manifest in your life?
I try to be in a mindful place no matter what I’m doing, be it packing groceries or talking with a friend or "working.” I find that when I get quiet with myself, I’m able to live from a higher place, a more mindful place. I try to be in that space and be mindful to serve the highest outcome for the planet and myself even if a decision doesn’t seem logically sound.
I try and live by a few power ideals:
Treat yourself, others, animals and the planet with love and respect and always take the awakened path in all communications and actions.
Always lead by intuition.
Do things in a way you're proud of.
Follow your inner voice/guide above all. ALWAYS.
Don’t do anything because it is considered the “proper way” to do it. Paint outside the lines and envision new and bold alternatives to the "common reality" that raises the vibration.
What advice can you offer to women who want to get into mindfulness, but feel a little intimidated?
I think there is a grand illusion around the concept of mindfulness that isn’t super helpful—that you have to sit and meditate for hours to be mindful. Instead, I believe in an integrated approach to spirituality. As long as you have intention behind what you do, anything can be considered a mindfulness practice—anything from picking your kids up from school to folding clothes to running a business.
I believe that being present in the moment is the biggest connector to mindfulness. If you are being completely present—even doing the most menial tasks—you are practicing mindfulness beautifully.
Register in advance to join in the conversation with Bristol, Nikola,
and our amazing guests as we explore Mindfulness on Tuesday, Feb 13, 7-9pm.
where the mind is full of the essence of life.