Susky Staff Dives Head First into Headspace

By Lizzy Beall, Reporter

Meditation and mindfulness has been embraced by SHS faculty with subscriptions for the Headspace app.

  Headspace utilizes voice-instruction and animations to naturally train users’ minds to accept their thoughts instead of resist them.

  Research has shown that meditation can help reduce stress and anxiety, improve focus, and contributes to feelings of self-acceptance and positivity.

  English teacher and devout user of the app Tim Groth obtained a grant from the Headspace corporation for the Southern York School District faculty.

  Groth observes that he has gained a stronger sense of balance after he started meditating daily.

  “It doesn’t mean that I am always docile and placid because that’s not what mindfulness is. It means that when there are those moments in life when stressful situations come up, you have a tool that you can utilize to kind of calm yourself down and prioritize where you need to spend your energy,” said Groth.

  As an alternative education teacher, Michelle Marusko has been using the practice of meditation for over two years, specifically as a strategy to help students overcome anxiety and depression.

  Marusko integrates the Headspace app with some of her classes, believing all students can benefit from taking a little quiet time for themselves.

  “Everybody has anxiety, some of it is manageable, some of it is not manageable for some people, but it’s a great way to just calm yourself. We live in such a busy society and a busy world, and we have all of these advancements with technology that everything goes so fast, and we never have time to relax ourselves,” said Marusko.

  Principal Kevin Molin supports the idea that healthier mindsets of teachers and staff could lead to more positive classroom atmospheres.

  Molin recognizes that with the pressures that high school students are under, meditation may be a viable way to ease that tension.

  “If you go to the elementary schools, they take brain breaks. Well at the high school level, where can we maybe start to incorporate some of those things to potentially try to relieve stress for our own students,” said Molin.

  Molin acknowledges that although more details would need to considered, the prospect of someday integrating meditation into classrooms is a standing possibility.

  “What works, what doesn’t work, how does it fit, when does it fit, when is it an appropriate time to do it. I’m definitely not opposed to help bring that [meditation] to the students,” said Molin.

  Headspace offers a 10-day free trial for anyone interested in learning the basics of mindfulness and meditation.

  Groth recommends meditation to anyone desiring a way to manage the strains of everyday life.

  “Really anybody can do it. But you have to be an individual who recognizes that life is stressful and that stress does affect our lives . . . And so if you have an interest in making your life more purposeful and making it more relaxing, then mindfulness is something that I think anybody can benefit from,” said Groth.

Lizzy Beall
“I really enjoy it [meditating]. It’s for me a really important part of my day and I kind of regret the days where I ever miss doing a mindful session,” said English teacher Tim Groth.
Lizzy Beall
Alternative education teacher Michelle Marusko embraces meditation in her own life and in those of her students.