36 episodes

The Science and Soul of Living Well is a podcast hosted by clinical psychologist, educator, trauma-informed mindfulness, meditation and yoga teacher, and Ayurvedic doula, Dr. Melissa Ming Foynes. Melissa and her guests dive deeply into ways to integrate evidence-based information from psychological science and complementary and alternative medicine into our daily lives so that we can cultivate resilience and live with more meaning, purpose and alignment with our values in all life domains (e.g., relationships, parenting, career, physical, mental, and sexual health and well-being, spirituality, identity) even in the most stressful and darkest of times.

The Science and Soul of Living Well Dr. Melissa Ming Foynes

    • Health & Fitness
    • 5.0 • 14 Ratings

The Science and Soul of Living Well is a podcast hosted by clinical psychologist, educator, trauma-informed mindfulness, meditation and yoga teacher, and Ayurvedic doula, Dr. Melissa Ming Foynes. Melissa and her guests dive deeply into ways to integrate evidence-based information from psychological science and complementary and alternative medicine into our daily lives so that we can cultivate resilience and live with more meaning, purpose and alignment with our values in all life domains (e.g., relationships, parenting, career, physical, mental, and sexual health and well-being, spirituality, identity) even in the most stressful and darkest of times.

    Grieving is Loving: The Depth & Breadth of Grief

    Grieving is Loving: The Depth & Breadth of Grief

    In this episode, I have a deeply powerful and inspiring conversation with Dr. Joanne Cacciatore (@grief_doctor), a grief educator, bereaved mother, tenured professor, best-selling author, and more. Dr. Jo started the first therapeutic carefarm in the world (@selah_carefarm) for traumatic grief which was recently featured on Oprah Winfrey and Prince Harry's Apple TV docuseries, "The Me You Can't See."
     
    Dr. Jo and I talk about both the subtle and more obvious ways American culture often marginalizes, invalidates, and oversimplifies grief and human suffering. We share our perspectives on what it means to live with and learn to carry grief in different seasons of life, and how we can responsibly work together to truly honor and hold space for the depth, breadth, and complexity of grief. Dr. Jo highlights some of her research findings that emphasize the unique role that animals can play in helping us navigate grief, and how we can learn from the quality of presence they offer. We also talk candidly about what it means to decolonize grief and trauma work. We also discuss how turning away from any kind suffering is not only unhelpful, but it also enables and perpetuates injustice. When we allow ourselves to feel the pain of another being, it offers an opportunity for deeper connection and an appreciation of our interconnectedness, without the kind of blaming and othering that hurts us all.
     
    About Dr. Jo: Dr Jo is tenured research professor at Arizona State University, where she runs the graduate Certificate in Trauma and Bereavement, and also founded the MISS Foundation. Since 1996, she has worked with and counseled those affected by traumatic death, most often the deaths of a children. She started Selah Carefarm, based on a framework for incorporating 40 domestic and farm animals rescued from abuse, torture, neglect, and homelessness. Her best selling book, Bearing the Unbearable: Love, Loss, and the Heartbreaking Path of Grief, won the Indies Book of the Year Award and her most recent book of meditations, Grieving is Loving, was released in December of 2020. To connect with Dr. Jo, visit her website (https://www.centerforlossandtrauma.com).
     
    Additional Resources & Information

    Decolonizing Trauma Work by Renee Linklater


    For practices that can support you in times of transition, stress, and hardship, check out my free 4-part video series on building resilience: https://melissafoynes.com/free-series


    If you're interested in some support crafting personalized mantras to help you navigate difficult anxiety-filled moments, check out the free guide (https://melissafoynes.com/anxiety-mantras).


    For personalized support integrating tools from evidence-based psychology and ancient wisdom traditions, check out my 1:1 Coaching Program and if the fit is right, apply today to join the waitlist for 2022: https://melissafoynes.com/1-1-program


    If you are interested in a free consultation to chat about whether the 1:1 program may be right for you, feel free to email me at hello@melissafoynes.com to set-up a time to connect. I'd love to hear from you!


    For announcements about the podcast and new workshops and offerings, including free resources, follow @drfoynes on Instagram.

    Please note that the information provided in this episode does not constitute professional advice or therapy, mental health services, or health care services, & is not intended to serve as a substitute for professional advice or services. If you are struggling with a mental health crisis or need immediate assistance, please call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room.

    • 1 hr 19 min
    Listening to your body’s wisdom: Embodied resilience in daily life

    Listening to your body’s wisdom: Embodied resilience in daily life

    In this episode, I have a rich conversation with Becca Clegg (@beccaclegglpc), an inspiring author, psychotherapist, embodiment teacher, consultant, & speaker, about listening to & learning from your body's wisdom.
    Becca & I talk about what it means to live in an "embodied" way & why embodiment is so important. We also offer specific examples of how to recognize when you are veering toward disembodiment. Throughout our conversation, we share simple & accessible ways you can deepen your own practice of embodiment. We also highlight how embodiment and connecting and/or reconnecting with your body is a non-judgmental, compassionate framework for feeling what you feel. Such an approach can counteract your conditioning from cultural messages and life experiences that has taught you to view the body as shameful, or to understandably associate the body with a lack of safety. We close by discussing ways of cultivating more resilience in the face of stress through simple vagal toning practices. The journey towards increased embodiment is personal, not linear, and possible for everyone.
    Becca Clegg is an author, psychotherapist, embodiment teacher, consultant, and speaker. She has worked for over 15 years as a therapist and currently has a private practice specializing in the treatment of women’s issues in Atlanta, GA. She has passion for working with women and strives to provide a supportive place for her clients and community to explore and heal their relationship with food, self-image, embodiment, spirituality (connection to that which goes deeper than the physical) & personal development. To connect with Becca, visit her website (https://rebeccaclegg.com), follow her on Instagram (@beccaclegglpc), & check our her book (https://rebeccaclegg.com/the-book/).
    Additional Resources & Information

    If you're interested in personalized support that integrates tools from evidence-based psychology and ancient wisdom traditions, check out my 1:1 Coaching Program and if the fit is right, apply today to join the waitlist for 2022: https://melissafoynes.com/1-1-program


    If you are interested in a free consultation to chat about whether the 1:1 program may be right for you, feel free to email me at hello@melissafoynes.com to set-up a time to connect. I'd love to hear from you!


    For more strategies that can support you in your practice of embodiment and cultivating resilience and balance in times of transition, stress, and hardship, check out my free 4-part video series on building resilience: https://melissafoynes.com/free-series


    If you notice perfectionism in your relationship to your body, check out the free 49-page workbook "A Guided Self-Assessment: Understanding Perfectionistic Tendencies" (https://melissafoynes.com/perfectionistic-tendencies) and the accompanying 3-part perfectionism series on the podcast (Episodes 28, 29, and 30).


    Follow @drfoynes on Instagram for more tips on learning from your body's wisdom and living in a more embodied way.

    Please note that the information provided in this episode does not constitute professional advice or therapy, mental health services, or health care services, & is not intended to serve as a substitute for professional advice or services. If you are struggling with a mental health crisis or need immediate assistance, please call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room.

    • 1 hr 1 min
    Ayurvedic care that promotes holistic healing in postpartum and beyond

    Ayurvedic care that promotes holistic healing in postpartum and beyond

    In today's episode, I speak with Ameya Duprey (@ShaktiCare), board certified Ayurvedic practitioner, massage therapist and Ayurvedic postpartum doula about 5 key pillars of Ayurvedic wisdom ("eat, heat, sleep, love, and repeat") that can guide postpartum care that truly nurtures the birthing parent in the immediate aftermath of birth and for many years beyond.
    Ayurveda is a rich and complex holistic preventative medicine system originating in India over 5,000 years ago. Ayurveda can promote recalibration in times of stress, transition, and imbalance, and there are specific recommendations and healing modalities that can be particularly beneficial in the postpartum period, regardless of how the birth unfolded and the birth parent's unique mental and physical constitution prior to pregnancy. Ayurvedic postpartum care is well beyond the scope of one episode, so we hone in on some concrete takeaways you can share with others and implement in your own life.
    Ameya has been helping postpartum mothers fully heal from birth for over a decade. Her works include her published postpartum cookbook Mama’s Menu: Ayurvedic Recipes for Postpartum Healing, her signature postpartum recovery program Fully Healed Mama, and her postpartum care blog, ShaktiCare.com
    Check out Ameya's FREE masterclass How To Fully Heal From Birth Without Feeling Stressed & Exhausted at https://shakticare.com/heal. To learn more about Ameya or to connect with her further, visit her website, full of resources include a rich and comprehensive blog: https://shakticare.com
    Additional Resources & Information

    If you're interested in personalized support that integrates Ayurveda in addition to other tools from evidence-based psychology and ancient wisdom traditions, check out my 1:1 Coaching Program and if the fit is right, apply today to join the waitlist for 2022: https://melissafoynes.com/1-1-program


    If you are interested in a free consultation to chat about whether the 1:1 program may be right for you, feel free to email me at hello@melissafoynes.com to set-up a time to connect. I'd love to hear from you!


    For more strategies that can support you in finding balance in times of transition, stress, and hardship, check out my free 4-part video series on building resilience: https://melissafoynes.com/free-series


    Check out the free 49-page workbook "A Guided Self-Assessment: Understanding Perfectionistic Tendencies" (https://melissafoynes.com/perfectionistic-tendencies) and the accompanying 3-part perfectionism series on the podcast (Episodes 28, 29, and 30).


    Follow @drfoynes on Instagram for more tips on gaining insight into and thriving with the support of Ayurveda and its many practices.

    Please note that the information provided in this episode does not constitute professional advice or therapy, mental health services, or health care services, & is not intended to serve as a substitute for professional advice or services. If you are struggling with a mental health crisis or need immediate assistance, please call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room.

    • 1 hr 3 min
    Learning about yourself through the lens of Ayurveda

    Learning about yourself through the lens of Ayurveda

    In today's episode, I share some pearls of wisdom from Ayurveda, a rich and complex holistic preventative medicine system originating in India over 5,000 years ago. One translation of the word "Ayurveda" means "the science of life."
    Ayurveda can deepen your understanding of your unique mental and physical constitution in ways that can help you cultivate and craft your life in ways that promotes recalibration in times of stress, transition, and imbalance. Ayurvedic healing modalities include food, nutrition, and spices, specific physical activities, addressing thought patterns and actions, lifestyle practices, pranayama (breathwork), meditation, bodywork (e.g., abhyanga (warm oil massage), marma therapy), detoxification practices, daily and seasonal rituals and routines, and more. This body of wisdom is well beyond the scope of one episode, so today's focus will be on a few key nuggets.
    In addition to sharing more about what Ayurveda is and what personally drew me to Ayurveda, I share some key Ayurvedic principles (e.g., various Ayurvedic modalities, 5 elements, tridoshic theory, impacts of daily and seasonal rhythms) and offer some tips for self-study that can help you learn more about yourself through the lens of Ayurveda. I also describe examples of specific pranayama (breath work) and meditation practices that from an Ayurvedic practice can bring you more into balance depending on what is happening for you mentally, physically, seasonally, etc.
    Additional Resources & Information

    If you're interested in personalized support that integrates Ayurveda in addition to other tools from evidence-based psychology and ancient wisdom traditions, check out my 1:1 Coaching Program and if the fit is right, apply today for one of my final 2 spots for 2021: https://melissafoynes.com/1-1-program


    If you are interested in a free consultation to chat about whether the 1:1 program may be right for you, feel free to email me at hello@melissafoynes.com to set-up a time to connect. I'd love to hear from you!


    For more strategies that can support you in finding balance in times of transition, stress, and hardship, check out my free 4-part video series on building resilience: https://melissafoynes.com/free-series


    Check out the free 49-page workbook "A Guided Self-Assessment: Understanding Perfectionistic Tendencies" (https://melissafoynes.com/perfectionistic-tendencies) and the accompanying 3-part perfectionism series on the podcast (Episodes 28, 29, and 30).


    Follow @drfoynes on Instagram for more tips on gaining insight into and thriving with the support of Ayurveda and its many practices.

    Please note that the information provided in this episode does not constitute professional advice or therapy, mental health services, or health care services, & is not intended to serve as a substitute for professional advice or services. If you are struggling with a mental health crisis or need immediate assistance, please call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room.

    • 1 hr 26 min
    Setting and Maintaining Boundaries as a Highly Sensitive Person (HSP)

    Setting and Maintaining Boundaries as a Highly Sensitive Person (HSP)

    In today's episode, I briefly review what "high sensitivity" means. I also discuss different kinds of boundaries and containers that can help you thrive as an HSP. I also share examples of common barriers that many HSPs face in cultivating lifestyles that support boundaries and containers. I also offer some concrete tips and actionable strategies for for setting and maintaining boundaries as an HSP, including 1) ways to stay balanced in your life and consistently implement meaningful self-care practices that keep high sensitivity in mind, 2) ways to regularly tune into your inner landscape of thoughts, emotions, and sensations, 3) ways to use your inner awareness to identify what you need/want in terms of boundaries/containers, 4) ways to articulate and skillfully communicate to others what you need/want when it comes to boundaries/containers.
    Additional Resources & Information

    Because HSPs are so attuned to the external environment and tend to be highly conscientious, they can at times struggle with perfectionism. If this sounds like you, download free 49-page workbook "A Guided Self-Assessment: Understanding Perfectionistic Tendencies" (https://melissafoynes.com/perfectionistic-tendencies) and check-out the accompanying 3-part perfectionism series on the podcast (Episodes 28, 29, and 30).


    If you're interested in personalized support in understanding and navigating high sensitivity in a compassionate way that nourishes your unique needs and strengths, check out my 1:1 Coaching Program and if the fit is right, apply today for one of my final 2 spots for 2021: https://melissafoynes.com/1-1-program


    If you are interested in a free consultation to chat about whether the 1:1 program may be right for you, feel free to email me at hello@melissafoynes.com to set-up a time to connect. I'd love to hear from you!


    For more strategies that can support you in regulating your nervous system and building resilience as an HSP, check out my free 4-part video series on building resilience: https://melissafoynes.com/free-series


    Follow @drfoynes on Instagram for more tips on gaining insight into and thriving as a highly sensitive person.

    Please note that the information provided in this episode does not constitute professional advice or therapy, mental health services, or health care services, & is not intended to serve as a substitute for professional advice or services. If you are struggling with a mental health crisis or need immediate assistance, please call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room.

    • 1 hr 25 min
    Recovering from criticism as a highly sensitive person (HSP)

    Recovering from criticism as a highly sensitive person (HSP)

    In today's episode, I describe the trait of high sensitivity and share some key research that is helpful in understanding high sensitivity. I also discuss how cultural values, families of origin, life experiences and relationships shape our perceptions of high sensitivity. The judgment and criticism that highly sensitive people (HSPs) often face from others can result in an internalization of these harmful messages and profound self-judgment. Because this self-judgment can really erode self-esteem as an HSP, I share several examples of concrete ways we can both individually and collectively work on reframing how we think, talk about, and treat high sensitivity. I conclude by sharing key principles and actionable steps for facilitating your recovery from criticism and invalidation as an HSP.
    Additional Resources & Information

    Because HSPs are so attuned to the external environment and tend to be highly conscientious, they can at times struggle with perfectionism. If this sounds like you, download free 49-page workbook "A Guided Self-Assessment: Understanding Perfectionistic Tendencies" (https://melissafoynes.com/perfectionistic-tendencies) and check-out the accompanying 3-part perfectionism series on the podcast (Episodes 28, 29, and 30).


    If you're interested in personalized support in understanding and navigating high sensitivity in a compassionate way that nourishes your unique needs and strengths, check out my 1:1 Coaching Program and if the fit is right, apply today for one of my final 2 spots for 2021: https://melissafoynes.com/1-1-program


    If you are interested in a free consultation to chat about whether the 1:1 program may be right for you, feel free to email me at hello@melissafoynes.com to set-up a time to connect. I'd love to hear from you!


    For more strategies that can support you in regulating your nervous system and building resilience as an HSP, check out my free 4-part video series on building resilience: https://melissafoynes.com/free-series


    Follow @drfoynes on Instagram for more tips on gaining insight into and thriving as a highly sensitive person.

    Please note that the information provided in this episode does not constitute professional advice or therapy, mental health services, or health care services, & is not intended to serve as a substitute for professional advice or services. If you are struggling with a mental health crisis or need immediate assistance, please call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room.

    • 1 hr 11 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
14 Ratings

14 Ratings

Kris Hillberg ,

Incredible Guest and Lovely Host

Melissa is a magical human with so much knowledge to share with the world. I loved having her on my show and just as much enjoyed being a guest on hers. She is a woman who brings light and love into the world and blesses those who come in contact with her. Thankful we crossed paths.

kaylad&polly ,

Melissa's podcast means having support and reflection tools in my pocket

Wow. So many times I have looked to Melissa podcast and library of amazing episodes for support, insight, guidance. Melissa is a wam voice, a friendly and supportive hand on my back, a podcast that provides a hug emotionally. I have concluded each episode feeling lighter, more emotionally in-touch, freer in my body, and more compassionate in my heart and mind. Melissa helps remember that event the toughest emotions sometimes have something to teach us. She is exemplifies the idea that self-awareness, self growth, are great and radical acts of service that we can do for our selves, others who we love, and the broader collective of our world. Melissa, from my heart, thank you. This is a gem and you have so generously offered your heart, mind, spirit, and expertise in a way that I and so many appreciate.

jac cart ,

Deep & Thoughtful

Dr. Foynes brings around a wide range of people as her guests and deep dives into powerful conversations with each of them. She is an excellent listener and I really love her thoughtful responses that she reflects back to what people say. She brings so much love and information to each podcast and is so generous with her gift of knowledge and she shares that so beautifully and freely with us in the podcast.

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