A way of paying attention that can bring us greater resilience, ease, and joy.


Upcoming Classes & Retreats


Sitting Together
30 minutes of free, guided practice with Carolyn.
All are welcome ~ ONLINE
Currently on hiatus.
To receive meeting info, please join my mailing list:
Select CONTACT from the menu to sign up. 
Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction
The gold standard! This eight-week, research-supported course dives deep into mindfulness practice. Community, connection, exploration, transformation.
For Mindfulness Northwest ~ IN PERSON (Bellingham)

Day of Mindfulness
Silence, community, and the beauty of nature. Join this day of continuous guided practice. Take time out. Be nourished.
For Mindfulness Northwest ~ IN PERSON (Semiahmoo County Park)

Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction
The gold standard! This eight-week, research-supported course dives deep into mindfulness practice. Community, connection, exploration, transformation.

Fierce Compassion: A Women’s Retreat

Join us in cultivating both fierce and tender compassion with a warm community of women.
Step away from your busy life into quiet, contemplation, and beauty.
(We use an inclusive definition of “women”. All who identify as women are welcome.)
For  Three Trees Yoga with Karen Schwisow ~ In Person

Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction ~ Residential Training
A 5-day residential version of the 8-week MBSR course. Enjoy learning with others at a beautiful retreat center with yummy meals provided.
For Mindfulness Northwest ~ IN PERSON (Dumas Bay Centre)
August 19 – 24, 2022


What People Are Saying . . .


Prior to my first workshop with Carolyn on mindful self-compassion, I had been “doing” meditation exercises either with an app or using breathing techniques. Carolyn opened up the world of mindfulness to me. She is a wonderful teacher – patient, empathetic, warm, compassionate, and a brilliant communicator with great energy! She went above and beyond to understand the needs of each student.
-Anand, MSC participant

I find Carolyn’s feedback as we talk about our experience endlessly helpful, insightful, and genuine.
– Carol G., MSC participant

Carolyn provided an abundance of information while keeping the learning incredibly organic and experiential. I appreciate the scientific and practical examination of the practice along side the less tangible, emotional, spiritual elements.
– taylor s., MBSR participant

Insightful, inspirational, and transformative.
-Spencer, MSC participant

Carolyn is a really wonderful instructor – she holds space for everyone in the class in a special way, modeling the practice of mindful self-compassion, but as an outward expression.
-Erin B., MSC participant

Lots of great insights and practices that help you to understand mindfulness and how you can use it in your daily life in formal or informal ways. 
– Jen H., MBSR participant

Carolyn is great! Well-studied, wise, creative, playful and pragmatic. Anything you glean from the course and your practice improves your life.
– Renee, MSC participant



Headshot by Tiffany Brooks





spring lullaby
wafting through the windows
cacophonous frogs



Carolyn McCarthy

Carolyn McCarthy has worked for years cultivating presence, attentiveness, and joy as a writer, actor, and singer. After a decade of solo meditation practice, she was thrilled to find Mindfulness Northwest’s retreats and classes. The process of learning in community under the guidance of a trained teacher has been invaluable, inspiring her to become a teacher herself.

Carolyn offers classes in the hopes of moving us, individually and collectively, toward healing, wholeness, and love. Her practice supports her work in social justice, encouraging her to turn toward the difficult within and without. Mindfulness practices also help her to be a calmer, happier person and a better mother, daughter, partner, and friend (most of the time!).

Carolyn lives with her family where the Chuckanut Mountains meet the Salish Sea in the ancestral homelands of the Coast Salish people. Here by way of colonialism, she is grateful for the ongoing leadership that her neighbors, the Lhaq’te’mish (Lummi Nation), provide in caring for the lands and waters we all call home. In addition to time in the classroom, she loves reading, singing, writing letters, watching birds, and dancing like a fool.

TRAINING: Certified to teach MSC by UCSD Center for Mindful Self-Compassion. Trained to teach Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction through Mindfulness Northwest. Graduate of Mindfulness Northwest’s 9-month Mindfulness Teacher Training Program. Has attended retreats & trainings with Michelle Becker, Robin Boudette, Tim Burnett, Chris Germer, Steve Hickman, Michelle Johnson, Kristin Neff, Tuere Sala, Regula Saner, Karen Schwisow, Heather Sundberg, and David Treleaven.


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