My Teacher Training, Experience and Approach

Teacher Training & Experience

  • Practitioner of mindfulness meditation for the past 9 years and teacher for the past 1,5 years to individuals and businesses in Paris and online.
  • Currently in the 2 year Mindfulness Meditation Teacher Certification Program taught by world renowned senior teachers Tara Brach and Jack Kornfield, in partnership with Greater Good Science Center at University of California Berkeley and the Awareness Training Institute, to be completed by February 2021.
  • Designed & taught a 7 Week Introduction to Mindfulness course to 56 students from many different nationalities & cultures with 9.24/10 average student satisfaction rating (NPS 72).
  • Founded, leading and teaching on a weekly basis at the Mudita Mindfulness Community of 10+ members for the past year.
  • Experienced at bringing small mindfulness practices into the workplace and teaching mindfulness at the business setting. As a Head of Product / Product Manager at tech startups for almost 10 years, closely familiar with the fast business world from the inside out.
  • Experienced with shorter mindfulness workshops as seen at Urban Wellness Retreat and Welcoming The New Year.

Teaching Approach

  • Trauma-informed and trauma-sensitive as traumatic stress is estimated to impact close to 90% of the population
  • Establishing mindful & multicultural communication guidelines to create safe learning environments
  • Making wellness accessible to all by allowing to pay what you can afford to pay
  • Multi-lingual as needed; English - Turkish - French
  • Focusing on real-world applications of mindfulness; bringing the practice alive by integrating it into daily life
  • Focusing on direct experience of concepts
  • Sharing and learning from others in small groups
  • Moving from scientific evidence and using science to trust in the practice
  • Bringing teachings to life with literature and stories from many walks of life

About Me

Being born and raised in Istanbul, and having lived in St. Louis, US for 4 years and in Paris for 4 years, I consider myself a blend of Turkish, American and French cultures. I speak Turkish, English and (an improving) French. My gender pronouns are she/her/hers. I care deeply about multiculturalism and I make it a big part of all my mindfulness classes and communities.

Read more about me here, and read my manifesto on everyday wellness.

My Mindfulness Story

Mindfulness came into my life after losing my father at the age of 21 and it has been the most helpful wellness practice for me over the years. It has taught me to live in the present, decreased my stress, increased my resilience, deepened my awareness and compassion for myself and others.

Through my mindfulness practice, I've learned more about my reactivity. I've learned that there is always a story I tell myself about what is going on and then, there is really what is going on. I've learned that once I accepted the reality of what is here and now, I could respond differently. Mindfulness has made me more anchored in the present moment, and less in the past, the future, or in my never-ending to do list.

Through mindfulness, I've learned and am still learning to love myself with my shortcomings, and to not take anyone out of my heart. I've understood that there are no bad humans, only humans suffering, and we can choose to constantly forgive ourselves and each other.

As a teacher, I now have the privilege of witnessing how others benefit from these basic understandings of mindfulness, how they open their hearts, and find fuller, more present, joyful lives.

Student Reviews

So perfect as an introduction course, it opened my mind to new concepts and ways of seeing life. I loved the spontaneity, humbleness, good energy during sessions. I left classes so light, peaceful and grateful. Thank you because I could pay what I could afford to pay and like that I was able to join the course. Love your recordings, your handouts, and all good energy you put into this course. I hope I can continue practicing what you taught even if 5 minutes a day. - Gabriela
I valued most the community, the joint learning, the feeling of intimacy and space while discovering new things about myself, the progress we've made without really feeling the pressure, the lovely and patient teacher, and the location. I salute your courage to help some "lost" souls finding their ways to a happier every day life! I feel blessed having you as my mindfulness teacher, and can't wait to practice with you again. - Julie
During the meditation course with Zeynep, I learned to break free from my own negative perceptions and self-evaluation which had me in state of paralysis and despair. As a result, I found myself opening up communication channels, finding clarity and understanding the power of compassion and feel more capable of forging my own pathways. - Verena
The course was wonderful, I just wished it would have lasted longer! This course succeeded my expectations (the clear and detailed handouts, the recordings, the practice sessions, the 3 hours retreat, and Zeynep's warmth). - Maria
It is very well organized course. The structure of the group and guidelines were so helpful. - Seren
Everything was thought out to the tiniest detail and very well organized! It was a beautiful course. I would consider joining a second course that builds up on this one. - Eda
I really liked this course and especially valued focusing on myself for a moment, and accepting myself and situations around me. - Alex
You explain everything so well and the course feels very balanced. It was a wonderful start of my journey to mindfulness. - Delia
The course is brilliant. I really enjoyed the course and was surprised that everything we’ve learned really works. I’d say this another step forward to a person I’d like to be thanks to you. Thank you Zeynep for your time and energy, I couldn’t wish better teacher or better quality of content. It was really great and inspiring. - Emilie
I really loved how open, kind and caring everyone was. It felt like a safe space from day one! - Gaby
I liked how everyone was very open to this course and welcoming. We all learned how to listen. - Antonio
It is a perfect and simple introduction to mindfulness. I really appreciated the content, the simplicity and the diversity of the people (the multicultural aspect). - Elige
This course is going to introduce you to a life-changing skill which will help you appreciate life + yourself. I'm so happy I got to connect with myself! I valued how kind and wonderful Zeynep was. She introduced it in such a beautiful way.  - Zara
A great introduction to mindfulness - inclusive and a very safe space. This course would have been an extremely useful addition to therapy for me a few years ago. - Sarah
Learning how to be kind to yourself gives you back your space. - Denise
This course gives a lot of useful tools to face life. - Florence
This course teaches a scientific method to practice meditation, creating new pathways in the brain to develop positive thinking by staying in the present, awareness and compassion. The course was well structured, the content was shared at a good pace and there was a nice balance between theory and practice. - Nadia
You made me come in touch with meditation in a friendly way and this is priceless! The course has given me a different perspective of what meditation is and made me want to go into the practice every day at any time without struggling. Getting more in touch with oneself, getting to know and explore the universe that resides within us without hesitating only closing the eyes. The way you teach makes it easy to follow meditation, to really work deep, and choose from different meditations based on what I feel like during any occasion.  - Mariana
The combination of theory and practice, the non-sectarian approach, the fact that it was a safe space. All of the above transformed the course and made it into more. Thank you! - Hamid

Here's Sandra, a student of the course in 2019:

Here's Mariana, a student of the course in 2019: