Dr. Kaufmann's ease of "getting people" and connecting deeply is both innate and developed through decades of working as a Clinical Psychologist. Her particular love of understanding and serving women in midlife was a result of her own midlife transition. After working for over two decades as a forensic (legal) psychologist and adjunct faculty university instructor, change was beckoning. This loud call for something different was concurrent with the onset of menopause, her parents '(now both deceased) decline and her daughters readying to leave the nest. Using tools from clinical psychology and her long-term meditation practice, Shayna consciously worked to "embrace," rather than reject these inevitable transitions. This embracing approach helped her gracefully (well most of the time) navigate these huge changes and unexpectedly find power in the process. Thus the evolution of "Embrace the Middle." Embrace The Middle proposes a paradigm shift from the perception of midlife as a negative, crisis-laded period. It appreciates the challenges inherent in these years and also the wisdom, gifts, and expansiveness that comes with being "a bit" older. She guides women to embrace these years through educational trainings, workshops, meditation guidance and retreats, and speaking. Her approach to Embracing the Middle reflects her varied learning and manifests as a clear yet gentle process done within an intimate, supportive environment. The events include direct teaching, experiential exercises, guided meditations and processing to help participants integrate the information. The tools she uses draw equally from her clinical training and 18 years of Zen practice and are ones that she has used on a personal level. Shayna has been happily married since 1999 and is the mother of two powerful daughters, both currently in college. In her free time, Shayna loves hiking, walking on the beach with her husband and playing with her dog Nola, named after her home town, New Orleans.