about airamaia...


Positive PsychologY Specialist and a Mindfulness Teacher

Let me tell you a little about myself, as I am more than a list of courses, titles and certificates. It is difficult for me to put into words, since I don’t like labels, and I believe once we label ourselves, we are limited by them.

I’d rather be free and work with passion, bringing to my daily life the principles, values and virtues that I really believe in. I’d rather not base my work on one theory or philosophy, because people are different and thrive in different ways, in different paths and at different paces. Each moment presents us with opportunities to strengthen ourselves and become better human beings. The world is much better than it used to be, and if you don’t think so, I invite you to read Better Angels of our Nature, by Steven Pinker.

I have been teaching executives and diplomats from all over the world for more than 18 years (since 2000).  I have run a Portuguese and Brazilian Cultural Institute for 15 years.  Because people matter greatly to me, I’ve bee more than just a teacher, I took a personal interest in the lives of my students, and have acted as a counselor and a coach to my students, and the best part was that I could help each one of them achieve their goals, as all my classes have been private and personalized according to my students’ needs.

I am very proud of all my students and the work we did together. I don’t do miracles, and therefore I always expected expect my students to put time and dedication into their studies.  It takes commitment to realize your dreams.

I believe it is very important to have a good attitude, a healthy mind, as well as commitment and a solid work ethic.

In my program, we are going to learn how to have a healthy mind with some exercises and intervention techniques developed by Positive Psychology and which are scientifically proven.  

Below I will give you a summary of my background, and in the link at the bottom you can find my full resume and education experience.  

I have a Bachelor of Arts in Portuguese and English, and a Master’s Degree in Linguistics which sparked my passion for our minds.  My thesis was in Pragmatics, which is a sub-field of linguistics and semiotics that studies the ways in which context contributes to meaning. Pragmatics encompasses speech act theory, conversational implicature, talk in interaction and other approaches to language behavior in philosophy, sociology, linguistics and anthropology. Pragmatics studies how the transmission of meaning depends not only on structural and linguistic knowledge of the speaker and listener, but also on the context of the utterance, and any pre-existing knowledge about those involved, including the inferred intent of the speaker, and other factors.

My studies in this field led me to understand how Mindfulness can help us detach ourselves from any uncontrolled thoughts that we all experience in our minds.

During my Masters, I realized that I wanted to be a teacher, but I didn’t want to teach theory or linguistics.  I wanted to have practical classes, helping people in their daily lives.  At this time, I started teaching Portuguese and Brazilian Culture to diplomats and executives.

Meanwhile, I took a 2-year course in Psychoanalysis in Brazil, which I enjoyed a lot, and had the opportunity to deeply study Freud, Jung, Frommer and other remarkable scholars.  However, at that time, I hadn’t found a course and philosophy that I really wanted to dive into and make a part of my life.

For many years I took a myriad of courses, but more for fun, self-improvement and as a hobby – believe it or not, studying is my hobby!

2014 was a life changer year for me, as I moved to the US, I discovered Richard Davidson Ph.D.’s studies about Neuroplasticity and Meditation, fell in love with them and became eager to know more about this new Neuroscience field.  It was on this path that I learned about Positive Psychology and Mindfulness. After reading several books, studies and researches, I decided to take a course at the University of Pennsylvania where I got my Specialization in Positive Psychology. This approach was exactly what I had been looking for all my life.

I truly believe that Positive Psychology and Mindfulness changed my life, because in order to have a healthy mind we need to nurture and exercise it.  Nowadays, it is often said that we need to pay attention to our diet and exercise daily, but at the same time we forget that we need to nurture our mind with healthy thoughts and feed our lives with positive emotions.  Positive emotion is the fuel for a healthy mind the same way that nutritional food is essential to our body.  We also need to exercise the mind and this is my mission.

I want to help you nurture and exercise your mind in a good way that brings out the best you have in yourself.  All of the exercises are scientific proven. These are not self-help exercises. There are extensive studies proving that these small changes and exercises can lead well-being into your life.