I've always felt that health and wellbeing was a subject that I would focus on throughout my life -it has consistently been a topic which was of primary interest to me.
I began this journey completing my training as a Registered Nurse, and pursuing the traditional idea of what health should be. I used to spend much of my time working on high-dependency surgical units, together with some rehabilitation. The focus was very much upon providing physical interventions to support recovery, and there was little time available for much beyond these 'essential' roles.
Over time, I decided to move to an area of health which was more focused on actively improving wellbeing, rather than simply responding to disease. So, I completed additional training in health promotion, and started running my own wellbeing clinics - supporting people with conditions like heart-disease, asthma or diabetes, together with health screening and wellness coaching services.
This was so much more aligned with my idea of what wellbeing should be, and I loved the work I was doing. It felt like I had had found my calling - helping people to change their habits and mindset, and to become more self-empowered in taking charge of their own health.
Then I developed chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia, and I was forced to rethink everything I thought that I knew about health and wellbeing.
The experience of living with a chronic illness is quite different to learning and reciting theoretical ideas about health.
As with anything in life, when something is not working well, you have two main options: you can either let that problem define you, or you can choose to change the aspects that you have control over, and to improve your personal experience. I chose the latter.
So, I embarked on a journey of self-empowerment, and along the way I developed a much deeper awareness of all the aspects of life which impact wellbeing, many of which exist under our awareness. I explored a wide range of topics; from the physical effects of unresolved emotional trauma, to the inextricable link between mind and body, and the ways in which our cultural beliefs and expectations can affect our mental, physical and emotional health. During this process, I began to question many of the ideas that I had previously held about wellbeing, and also to dive into the validity of many of our wider cultural beliefs too.
Taking a holistic approach to health was the key for my own recovery. It is something which I am now passionate about helping others to integrate into their own lives, so that they can reap the benefits for themselves. But I'm well aware that this path is not for everyone. To make real progress on this journey requires an inquisitive mindset, a certain level of self-awareness, and a readiness to take charge for how you experience your life.
On my own journey, my new found awareness of the energetic component of wellbeing led me down a path where I began to explore spirituality and consciousness. This was the catalyst for my returning to university and studying the mind-body connection on a deeper level. So, off I went to complete my studies in metaphysics, philosophy of mind, spirituality, and health - each topic exploring the mind-body connection from a slightly different perspective.
But I didn't want to simply to add more information to my repertoire - but to do the exact opposite. One of the reasons that I chose to explore philosophy is that it examines topics on an existential level - at the deepest, fundamental, nature of being. So, in contrast to adding more information, this was a process of questioning strongly held beliefs, and letting go of each one in turn. An exercise in revealing the deepest levels of wisdom and eventually, the nature of life itself.
Qualified Registered Nurse: Post graduate diplomas in stress & chronic illness management, behaviour change, including psychology, pain control, asthma, diabetes, cardiovascular health
Chrysalis Effect Practitioner: specialist coaching for recovery from chronic pain & exhaustive conditions, including CFS/ME & fibromyalgia
ILM Accredited Well-Being Coach: lifestyle coaching for health-related issues including diet, healthy habits, stress, relationships, emotions
Scope of Practice:
Therapies for symptom control:
Back and muscular pain
Joint pain and muscular injuries
Fibromyalgia pain relief
Stress and anxiety reduction
Meridians and energy balance
Diet and nutrition
Acupressure for health
FdSc Degree in Complementary Therapies:
Holistic wellness, the relationship between spirituality and health, healing therapies, the mind-body connection, and holistic health
Including: nutrition, exercise, anatomy and physiology, biochemistry, psychology
Professional Qualifications: in several therapies, including therapeutic and remedial massage, aromatherapy, nutrition, reiki, stone therapy, reflexology, Thai massage, fibromyalgia management, and acupressure
Scope of Practice:
Chronic fatigue conditions
Health & well-being
Career & financial health
MA (Phil) - Eastern & Western Philosophy:
Metaphysics, philosophy of mind, spirituality & religion, and health & well-being
Dissertation: - Perspectives on trauma, mental illness, spiritual experience, and approaches to recovery
BA (Hons): - Philosophy, Spirituality & Holistic Health: Studying mind and body, spirituality & religion, scientific theory, rationality, knowledge, ethics, and approaches to health
Scope of Practice:
Philosophy of mind
Trauma and mental health
Spirituality and religion
Ethics and morals
Science and rationality
Wisdom and well-being