Students vent and de-stress with Teal Table Talks

Students+were+given+time+to+discuss+a+range+of+topics+pertaining+to+stress+and+anxiety.+Photo+credit%3A+Geralt+from+Pixabay

Students were given time to discuss a range of topics pertaining to stress and anxiety. Photo credit: Geralt from Pixabay

Jacqueline Cochran

Teal Table Talks are monthly gatherings hosted by Falcon Safe to promote self-care and personal awareness through participation in a guided group activity or discussion.

The gatherings, held virtually every fourth Thursday of the month at 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m., allowing anonymity through Zoom’s camera and naming features.

On Aug. 27, the discussion topic was guided meditation exercises and managing stress through meditation.

Laurie Angress, the guest speaker, is an Irest Meditation Instructor and Yoga Therapist. Angress discussed the five layers of self: the physical body, energy body, the mental body, the wisdom body and the bliss body.

She described each in detail and explained how these layers are interconnected and interworking. Through meditation, Angress explained, one can tap into each of these layers in cases of stress and anxiety to help quiet one part or all of them as a whole.

“Meditation has so many benefits that people don’t realize, such as [reducing] chronic pain, inflammation, decreases symptoms associated with anxiety, depression, insomnia, stress and trauma,” she said.

“Most of the time people think that meditation is thinking through problems or issues they are experiencing but really its a way to quiet the mind and its a pathway to experiencing your wholeness.”

Angress then led the group through a guided mediation. Participants were asked to close their eyes and breathe. While breathing, they were to imagine themselves in a special favorite place, somewhere they’ve never felt any hurt or pain.

Afterwards, the participants said they were experiencing less feelings of anxiety and they were more relaxed.

Angel Gray, the Cerritos College Campus Victims Advocate, said Teal Table Talks is an idea that was born out of the response to Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Gray said “the students enjoyed participating in the activities and it helped many of them open up about trauma they may have experienced.”

Teal Table Talks is intended to be a safe space where people can share experiences, hear others experiences, or where they can just listen and learn useful information.

The subjects range from domestic violence, trauma, ways to manage stress, rape and sexual assault crisis, other types of violence, sexual identity, and surviving trauma just to name a few.

The next Teal Table Talk will be held on Sept. 24 at 11:30 a.m.

The subject for discussion is people’s response to racial injustices and intersecting identities and will include a mask making activity. People are encouraged to join if they want to discuss these subjects in a respectful manner.

If you are seeking ways to open your mind to new experiences, meet new people, learn a new interpersonal skill, or join a group of people in a judgement free zone to discuss subjects that are difficult, then email Angel Gray at [email protected] to RSVP for the next Teal Table Talk.