As a qualified mindfulness teacher, I have been teaching students and staff at Woldingham School in Surrey since 2017. I find it rewarding to teach mindfulness to students and also enjoy taking sessions for adults only. My own experience of working in schools and my knowledge of mindfulness helps me deliver short yet effective sessions during the school day. Having coached adults in my earlier career, I decided to develop Mindful Surrey in 2018 to contribute to adults and children in a range of settings, including companies and schools, in and around Reigate and Dorking, Surrey.
I am particularly excited about my new 'Drama and Mindfulness' holiday classes for children. As a Drama teacher, I am experienced at using educational drama activities to help young people explore a range of ideas and learn about themselves, so it seems a natural step for me to use drama to teach mindfulness. Sadly, children of an increasingly young age are struggling with stress and it is great that mindfulness is now taught in so many schools.
I chose this gratitude symbol as a logo for Mindful Surrey because it is an aspect of mindfulness that I particularly like. We can get so caught up in things that are not as we would like, it is easy to forget the things we could appreciate. Not to diminish the unpleasant aspects of our lives, but to be aware of the pleasant ones as well.
In my early career, I led self-development courses in London, increasing my understanding of human behaviour and exploring ancient and new ideas about how to live well. I enjoyed supporting people in achieving their goals and expressing themselves. I started practising Yoga and trained in Dramatherapy at Roehampton Institute. During this time, I was also working as a professional theatre director and drama school teacher, developing leadership and teaching skills.
I went on to coach children with special needs at the same time as bringing up a family. I was leading quite a hectic life and it was a memorable moment when, in 2012, I discovered 'modern' mindfulness in a workshop. As I walked along a warm, white rug, feeling its softness between my toes, I felt a strong sense of relief and wonder, resting in the present. I had not realised that through all the 'busyness' of bringing up a family and teaching drama, I was forgetting to savour the present moment. Modern mindfulness resonated with so many ideas I had discovered and taught in my twenties, it felt like coming home.
In 2013, I took my first MBSR course, found it profoundly useful and have been meditating regularly ever since. I went on to train with MiSP (Mindfulness in Schools Project) to become a mindfulness teacher. I am fortunate to work in a school where mindfulness is on the curriculum and I currently teach staff and students on a weekly basis.
I trained to teach the core mindfulness practices at The Mindful Academy in Spain, which is at the forefront of mindfulness training in Europe. I am currently on their training pathway as an MBSR teacher. To find out more about my training, please follow this link, https://mbsr.website/students. I follow the Good Practice Guidelines for teaching mindfulness of the UK Network of Mindfulness Teachers.
I have found mindfulness profoundly useful over the years. Not only has it helped me appreciate the present moment more, but it has also enabled me to experience events such as bereavement and other challenging situations with calm and confidence. I continue to be grateful for the benefits of mindfulness. I am motivated by the way that it has changed and enriched my own life and by the evidence that it has the potential to do the same for everyone. I am committed to sharing what I have learnt so as to empower and inspire others.