Lalli Dana Drobny founded KindMind - the heart of well-being in 2002. Inspired by 12 years studying/serving at international meditation retreat sites, Lalli longed to somehow share the peace she discovered there.
KindMInd was an experiment, a container to explore simple, more authentic ways to BE - individually and in community. It started as LIVE facilitation and coaching for individuals, couples, groups, and organizations. Designed to support and strengthen mind/body/spirit collaboration and right/left brain integration, KindMind blends somatic and mindfulness practices. It's aligned with current interpersonal neurobiology research and focuses on client-based, experiential, contemplative, and creative practices.
For forty years, Lalli has explored the mind/body connection: Polarity with Nancy Risley, Somatic modalities concurrent with Marshall Rosenberg and NVC, Reiki with Jean Ferris, Psycho-Physical Therapy with Bill Bowen, Ayurveda with Susan Sartwell Turner, Iyengar Yoga with Sarah Tuttle. Lalli completed Sarah Peyton's Resonant Healing Practitioner Training in 2021, and studies Emergent Constellations and Ancestral Healing.
Her curiosity about how uniquely we each learn was lit the summer she turned 12,, Shepherding the little ones in her Mom's neighborhood pre-school led to tutoring one of their siblings. Witnessing his reading, Dana noticed: "We don't see the same thing or the same way." That moment ignited her passion to better understand others.
Lalli has enjoyed working with students at The University of Iowa, University of New Hampshire, Santa Barbara City College, Antioch SB, The Learning Center, Pacifica Graduate Institute, and the University of Phoenix (San Francisco).
For three decades, she has integrated arts and creative processes, feelings and needs (NVC), and contemplative dialogue into public education, work arenas, and civic organizations. Her focus often explores: What does it mean to be a Responsible Human Being?
Lately, Lalli calls herself an Accompanist. While that word often conjures up a musician who supports, collaborates with, sometimes even educates singers, choirs, or instrumentalists, Lalli accompanies Human Beings (and our embodied Spirits) in the incredibly multi-faceted parts/roles we play every day.
Currently Lalli's focus is accompanying folks who want
PHOTO: Lalli saw this nest a few days after she witnessed two little hawks learning to fly.
Each KindMind Integration session flows from the client's unique perspective and intention. With warmth and care, Lalli listens closely to the client's words, gestures, memories, images. She watches posture, breath, pace, rhythm - honoring and following the client's flow and choices.
A KindMind process session might include time travel and contract release, guided meditations, writing, doodling, paying attention to what is, movement, listening, letting go and/or hanging on, singing.
For ease and spaciousness, Lalli recommends 75 minutes for the first session; general sessions are 55 minutes.
Honoring what our body/mind knows and remembers, Lalli pays attention to clients' innate and unique treasure-troves of wisdom. So often, a current stuckness springs from a life-long pattern that goes back to some 'forgotten' trauma still waiting for appropriate attention and release. Likewise, our inability to manifest a dream/wish might be our living out an unconscious story (no longer helpful) we are still carrying.
Humans are wired for connection; we do a lot better when we feel seen, heard, accompanied, when there is acknowledgment that, "Yes, I make sense."
Many of us didn't receive much resonance when we were little ones; we had to come up with our own wise strategies to survive, and thank goodness, we did. However, what served us well back then, now often confuses us. Many times, we just need to shine light on the crazy-making, disentangle it, and begin again. Again.
Soon after receiving an MA in Writing from the University of Iowa, I got a grant to create a writing space for 55-95 year olds to reflect on Work . What mattered most ? 40 years later, I attribute these elders' honest vulnerability (as well as an oral history I did with my Mom around the same time) as seeds for much of the work I've enjoyed since. Creating sweet spaces where we can connect deeper with ourselves and each other - be curious together. Listening to people's stories. Asking good questions. Yes, the stories we tell matter!
I designed Writing Our Lives into Being in 2003 as a place to explore our relationship with growable traits - how roots of kindness, courage, authenticity, honesty, or acceptance to name a few - can support us individually and collectively. Over the last 20 years, all sorts of iterations emerged (authors, genres, issues) in venues across the country, based on community interest and ever-changing times.
In 2020, responding to folks' despair and isolation around the pandemic , I started Write Now online workshops and Write Now Nests (smaller writing groups). Content honored joy and grief - in appropriate doses. (We saw how that was about as unique as each one of us.)
I feel blessed to offer this work, to keep exploring what a powerful tool language is for self, relational, and systemic discovery.
2023 is the beginning of Write Back to Being. I'm delighted to offer the first session - Magic Carpet Write on Sunday, Feb. 5 - at Santa Barbara Yoga Center., one of my special places.
p.s. no previous experience necessary. All sorts of writers and 'non-writers' Show Up. Some want to grow imagination, others discipline and focus. Some simply want connection. Others arrive with a manuscript already in progress, or the idea for a memoir, or simply because they know playing with words/ideas/images is good for building resilience and well-being.
Magic Carpet Write
Sunday, February 5, 1-3 pm
In this first ever Magic Carpet Write,
we welcome imagination
and a little full-moon magic.
Playing with the warp and weft (vertical and horizontal threads)
of our own knowing,
we weave words, doodles, stories, stillness, songs, poems, and movement
from and further into
the fabric of our Beingness.
Wear comfortable clothing. Please bring paper, pen/markers, and a drum or rattle. (This can be as simple as a cardboard box or jar of stones/coins/rice.)
hybrid: in person (12 spaces) and online
$27 early registration (thru Feb. 3)
Online registration (for both online and in person options ) through Santa Barbara Yoga Center sbyc.com
This playful workshop is is an imaginative exploration and excavation, a pilgrimage of sorts: where have I come from? Where do I stand? A visual and verbal re-weaving, it's grounded in mindfulness practices and designed to help center, ground, and guide.
RAINY Season SPECIAL - THREE private Zoom 55-minute sessions for $275. (Yes, you can gift a session, or two, or three to another, or keep them all for yourself.) Write Lalli for details. Purchase by February 15; sessions can be claimed until May 1.
Write Now Nest - ONLINE Tuesdays 5-6:30 pm PDT (with 10 minutes after for those who like to linger longer)
February 21 and 28;March 7 and 14.
$108 (or sliding scale: $88-127)
Write Now Nest - 4 Tuesdays in April 2022, 4:00-5:30 pm PST. $84/4 weeks. Online. Half of proceeds will go to support Ukrainian refugees in Poland.
Contact Lalli If you wish to be included in upcoming workshops/classes for yourself or your. group.
I did three sessions via Zoom with Dana. I can say without qualification these were the most productive 'therapy' I've had. Much longer more traditional therapy sessions achieved less benefit. I credit this both to the method of memory recovery Dana employs and to Dana’s calming, warm, inviting, non-judgmental engagement with me as a client, which by disarming defenses enabled me to retrieve and unpack moments of consciousness to a degree I had not previously experienced.
Dr. Stephen Vlastos, Emeritus Professor of History
I value the time Lalli shared with me. I felt a large part of the traumatic event of my mother’s suicide was released. How? I remembered an expression during our 2nd session - words I made up and held onto as that 12-year old who was not allowed to mourn. Remembering those words after all these decades helps me understand and finally “delete” one of my ongoing blocks that stops me from expanding. Clown/Artist/Writer, California, USA
I was at ease with Dana's technique. Even though it felt easeful she was able to open dark crevices and bring out what was truly behind what was happening for me. Once she helped bring some light onto issues I kept hidden, she helped me to process these issues. She gave me gentle guidance for approaching and then working with them. After our sessions I felt clear and confident about the best way for me to move forward. She has such a deep and loving compassionate heart. It made me feel safe and helped me to heal. She has a gift. Karen S, MS
When I think of Dana’s classes some of the words that come to mind are warm, safe, inspiring, rich, authentic, embodied writing.
Each session is a wonderful blend of old and new. There is structure and there are delightful surprises. Dana brings her experience as a meditation teacher and helps us get into the quiet and wise place inside. She creates a warm safe space so that the writing that happens is natural, brave and full of insights.
Dana also brings her experience as a language teacher and gives pointers on the craft of writing. She not only brings excellent reading material, but also helps us see why a particular poem or story works, what are some of the element that go into making a good piece of writing.
I love being a part of Dana’s writing community. I always go away feeling inspired and not so alone for the days when I do my writing practice on my own.
Sometimes our brains can make writing into a complex thing but in one of Dana’s classes I had the aha — writing is not complicated. You just notice the world around you or the world of your imagination and put that on the page. What could be simpler? Seema Chopra, Santa Barbara, CA