Liaise Divorce Solutions serves as something of a resource for people who have questions about divorce. We offer a free consultation to parties who wish to explore the possibility of mediation and many times we are responding to questions on the phone and through the mail that parties pose regarding the process.
I was very excited when the prestigious mediation association The Mediation Society hosted a seminar entitled “Does Meditation Make You a Better Mediator?” I have a keen interest in meditation as a potential tool for developing an ever healthier mind and for assisting Liaise clients who have been in any way traumatized by the divorce process. At the seminar I was delighted to meet Rob Rosborough the attorney/mediator presenter who is a certified teacher of the “iRest” method of meditation and who has been gracious enough to agree to help bring the benefits of meditation to Liaise clients.
David Stein: Rob, again thank you very much for agreeing to help educate parties to the benefits of meditation. Our readers may, or may not, be familiar with meditation. How would you describe the iRest method of meditation and what benefits could a recently divorced or divorcing person reasonably expect from learning your techniques?
Rob Rosborough: David, one of the benefits that attracted me to iRest was how immediately effective it was. One of the comments I hear most frequently from folks who have tried to meditate is that they are “bad meditators” or that meditation is difficult for them. iRest is much more accessible. It’s a guided meditation while you’re learning it and the very first time I did it, I felt a deep sense of relaxation that stayed with me as I went about the rest of my day. Of course, that’s just one of its many benefits.
David Stein: What are some of the others?
Rob Rosborough: Well, I’m sure I don’t have to tell your readers how stressful and emotional divorce is. iRest is specifically designed to help people with traumatic events. In fact, the Department of Defense uses it to treat Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in veterans and active-duty soldiers. The Department commissioned a study of iRest at Walter Reed Army Hospital that was so successful, they immediately created an iRest program.
David Stein: Rob, this is very interesting and encouraging. Many of the Liaise clients are also attempting to manage the physical manifestation of their dissolution, such things as high blood pressure or weight gain, or mild to less than mild depression. Can iRest impact positively upon these types of symptoms?
Rob Rosborough: That question covers a lot of ground, David. My short answer is yes, iRest can help but I also want to stress that meditation is not a miracle cure for all that ails you or a substitute for seeing a doctor. That being said, the American Heart Association recommends meditation for heart health, in part because studies have shown its ability to help with things like high blood pressure.
And many now recognize the degree to which emotions and negative thought patterns impact our physical health. I think most of us are familiar with terms like “emotional eating.” More directly than other forms of meditation, iRest addresses emotional and cognitive patterns, giving us tools to help release negative thoughts and behaviors.
David Stein: Fascinating. Clearly those who begin meditation with the modest goal of developing an ever healthier mind may experience many positive side benefits. Do you know if meditation is an effective “force multiplier” for those who are already engaged in activities designed to improve mental/physical health such as yoga, or regular exercise?
Rob Rosborough: Meditation isn’t just about the few minutes a day that you are meditating. It is exercise for the mind and just like physical exercise; it affects how you operate throughout the rest of the day. It’s certainly going to enhance a yoga posture practice or other exercise by increasing your concentration and commitment.
Even more fundamentally, meditation is a form of “mindfulness” practice, something you hear a lot about these days. Mindfulness in general, and iRest in particular, allow you to be more present as you go through your entire day. iRest enables you to respond better to the innumerable challenges we all face every day, from bad traffic to a difficult conversation.
David Stein: Brilliant. So I am certain that our readers would like to know, how do I get started?
Rob Rosborough: The easiest thing to do is to sign up for the introductory iRest for Divorce Survivors course I’m teaching. Participants will learn the basic steps of iRest with a focus on healing from divorce. And they will come away with several short and long recordings of guided meditations they can use in their practice. I also teach individually for those who want a more tailored practice or extensive training, but not surprisingly, that’s more expensive.
David D. Stein has been an attorney for 30+ years and the founder of Liaise® Divorce Solutions. He is a trained mediator, dispute resolution specialist and lecturer on non-violent conflict management techniques and tools.
Rob Rosborough leads a typographically challenging life as both a mediator and meditation teacher. He teaches a type of meditation called “iRest” to individuals, law firms and corporations. iRest is a Westernized version of yoga nidra and one of its best-known uses is by the Department of Defense to treat PTSD. His mediation practice focuses on elder and adult-family conflict but includes a broad range of issues, especially those where an ongoing relationship is involved. He also teaches conflict resolution, helping people learn to prevent and resolve conflict themselves.