The Mind Spa is an important campus resource with tools to help you relax, improve concentration and memory, and overall success as a student.
The Mind Spa is a space equipped for the practice of mindfulness, meditation, relaxation, and overall self-care. Practicing mindfulness and meditation can have important physical and mental health benefits such as increased concentration, awareness, and regulation of emotions. Studies show that these practices have positive short- and long-term effects on the brain. You might begin to notice benefits from your participation at the Mind Spa immediately or after a few sessions.
The Mind Spa is located in AOK Library 367 and Patapsco 163
- Monday – Thursday: 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.
- Friday: 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
- Saturday: CLOSED
- Sunday: Noon – 8 p.m.
- Monday – Sunday: 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.
CLOSED December 24, 2019 – January 2, 2020
What is Biofeedback?
- Biofeedback involves the use of technology to help us monitor our internal emotions through our biology.
- The attention to physical sensations can help us attend to and become more aware of our feelings. When we become aware of our feelings, then we can better monitor and regulate them, especially in times of stress. You may find the use of biofeedback devices to be a helpful complement to your psychotherapy at the Counseling Center.
Ways you can use Biofeedback in the Mind Spa
- Portable BioFeedback: The EmWave
What does EmWave do?
- EmWave helps you to manage your heart rhythm by managing your heart rate to achieve harmony. You do this through changing your breathing patterns and focusing on positive emotions. For more information go to www.heartmath.com/emwave-technology
- The portable emWave device can plugged into the Mind Spa’s PC where you can view your heart rhythms and play games that help to regulate your breathing.
How do you use EmWave?
- Just plug the provided USB cord into the computer and the other end into the portable emWave device.
- Place your thumb on the sensor or use the ear sensor.
- Open the program on the desktop.
- Follow the on-screen directions and enjoy!
- Biofeedback Games/Activities
We currently have two biofeedback games in the Mind Spa: Journey to the Wild Divine and Relaxing Rhythms & Zen Journey. The EmWave (see portable biofeedback above) can also be plugged into the computer and used with EmWave Software.
This series of computer-based games, activities, and lessons uses biofeedback equipment to assess the physical signs of emotions and anxiety in your body in order to help you develop your ability to regulate your inner life. Journey to the Wild Divine will challenge you to complete tasks and adventures by regulating your emotional state.
This program provides personalized feedback and lessons from well-known experts to help you practice breathing, meditation, and relaxation skills.
What is Light Therapy?
- Research has shown that light therapy is an effective treatment for Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), or “the winter blues.” As the amount of natural sunlight waxes and wanes throughout the year, students may notice an increase in depression or lethargy. The lamp can increase energy and foster a positive mood, even on the darkest of days!
How can I sign out a lamp?
- Let the front desk know that you would like to reserve a lamp. Fill out the consent form.
What is Aromatherapy?
- Aromatherapy is the practice of using natural oils extracted from flowers, bark, stems, leaves, roots, or other parts of a plant to enhance psychological and physical well-being.
- The various aromas from these “essential” oils is widely believed to stimulate brain function. It is also believed that the use of essential oils can help one attain a pleasurable emotional balance.
Select an automated massage program or create a custom relaxation experience to put your mind and body at ease. Massage helps by soothing sore muscles, relieving stress, and prompting the body to release endorphins which relieve tension and improve mood.
We have a variety of hot teas available, as well as cups and a hot water kettle. Drinking tea is not only soothing, but boasts health benefits as well!
We have designed the Mind Spa to be an ideal space for practicing mindfulness and breathing exercises. Feel free to come in and shut the door for the ultimate relaxation experience.
What is mindfulness?
- Mindfulness is the practice of paying attention to what is happening to you moment to moment. To practice mindfulness, one focuses on slowing down and bringing awareness to thoughts, feelings and actions without attaching judgments to them.
What are the benefits of mindfulness?
- Researchers, clinicians, and spiritual practitioners define mindfulness as the nonjudgmental awareness of experiences in the present moment. Mindfulness meditation practice involves the cultivation of capacities for attention, self-awareness, and regulation of emotion. Research has linked increased capacity for mindfulness meditation with a reduction in the presence of the stress hormone, cortisol (Jacobs, et al., 2013). Mindfulness has also been linked to increased self-awareness (Carlson, 2013). Importantly for our students, mindfulness training has been linked to improved test scores and working memory (Mrazek et al., 2013). These are only a few studies, and interest and research about mindfulness meditation in the medical literature is growing rapidly.
How can I practice mindfulness in the Mind Spa?
- Check out our “Practicing Mindfulness” worksheets in the Mind Spa.
- Play with our Sand Tray to focus exclusively on the tactile experience of touching and sculpting the sand.