I am a former academic, having taught undergraduate and postgraduate students in the areas of health psychology, mental health disorders, exercise psychology, positive psychology, and mindfulness. I held Lecturer and Senior Lecturer positions for over 12 years in both the Psychology and Sport & Exercise Science Departments of Northumbria University in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, U.K. I have an undergraduate BSc (Hons) degree in Sport & Exercise Science and PhD in Psychology. I was also a founding member of the Newcastle Centre for Positive Living at Northumbria University, a research and consultancy centre focusing on furthering the understanding and application of positive psychology.
In recent years I’ve helped design and deliver courses in mindfulness, positive psychology and Acceptance & Commitment Training (ACT) to the general public, and master classes in positive psychology to coaches, trainers, teachers and health professionals. I’m interested in helping individuals to understand the scientific research within the field of mindfulness, positive psychology and ACT, and in assisting them in applying it to their everyday lives. My purpose is to help people alleviate suffering and to live full and meaningful lives whatever circumstances they find themselves in.
Experience has taught me that there is an order in which instructions for optimum mental well being need to be implemented. It can be thought of as building a house. Firstly we must understand what type of house we want to create. Then we work on building a strong foundation that will hold the house steady, before building the house itself. If we do this properly, we can be confident that our house will remain standing for many years to come. This requires doing the job properly, and not rushing to do a quick fix. A quick fix may look great in the short-term, but may crumble when difficult weather comes along.
Step by step, day by day, we can incrementally change our lives. These small changes often seem insignificant at the time. So insignificant we wonder whether they are worth starting at all. But we do the same thing tomorrow, and the next day, and the next. We soon find - as the days accumulate - in one year’s time, or even in six months - our lives look entirely different. The smallest of actions done consistently can transform our experience of life. The things that we think we can never do, we will do. What seemed impossible becomes possible.
My approach has four main steps:
- Understand who you are
- Calm the mind
- Effectively deal with thoughts and feelings
- Take action
When I started working for myself, I wanted to create a different kind of well-being and personal development business. The work is born out of compassion and the desire to help people to change their lives for the better, and from day one I’ve built the culture around a set of four guiding principles that reflect this:
- Put people first
- Keep it simple
- Make it enjoyable
- Optimise for happiness and well-being, not profit