I currently work as an Ayurvedic coach, cook, writer and consultant.
1st class BSc (hons) degree in Global Futures
Ayurvedic Food & Lifestyle Consultant – training with the American Institute of Vedic Studies over three years while supporting case studies.
Performance Coach – accredited by Association for Coaching, Institute of Leadership & Management, Portsmouth University Business School.
Solution Focused Hypnotherapy Practitioner Diploma (HPD) training with Bristol school of Clifton Practice Hypnotherapy, accredited by The Association for Solution Focused Hypnotherapy (AfSFH), National Council for Hypnotherapy (NCH), General Hypnotherapy Standards Council (GHSC).
The Ayurvedic Institute
National Council for Hypnotherapy
I worked in sustainability prior to retraining. My career in sustainability began after I graduated from Bath Spa University with a degree in Global Futures. The main focus of the course was Agenda 21 and the implementation of Local Agenda 21 – a UN blueprint for a sustainable world. My main area of interest was futures work, global food systems and community development – strengthening the potential for bottom up solutions by empowering people and communities while supporting connections between all levels of a human system, that were solution focused and rooted in integrity. Alongside this learning, putting my hands in the soil, growing food and getting involved with community gardening and permaculture was important to me.
After leaving university I freelanced in a number of roles supporting sustainable projects: Association for Sustainability Practitioners – involved with community development becoming a co-director in 2009; Schumacher Institute – part of the project development team and a mentor for sustainable career change; Converging World – developing workshops for Cop15; Alastair Sawday – main researcher and co-writer for ‘Bristol Guide for Green Living’, Somer Community Housing – creating and delivering a community food growing project (‘Bountiful Balconies’); setting up and running environmental and gardening workshops on two allotments where I grew food with my children; supporting a youth led social and environmental group ‘Green Vision’; working in collaboration with Synchronicity Earth – nature facilitator for ‘Paw Prints’ which was an ecological catalyst project, where children from around the globe aged between 5 and 11 explored nature in their backyard recording their adventures and stories and sharing these.
CPD included moving through the ‘Gaia Leadership Course’ run by the ‘Gaia Coach Institute’ – this led to my taking the gap year that turned into three, to discover what was happening on the edge of sustainability (permaculture teaches us that the edges are the places where lots of interesting/progressive things are happening). During this time I worked at three projects: Embercombe, Schumacher College, Ecodharma, and I started to learn about Theory U – a model developed by Otto Scharmer during two decades of action research at MIT. These experiences led to my retraining in Ayurveda on my return from this journey, in order to bring my interests in food, health, community resilience and care of the planet together – Ayurveda views both personal health and health of the planet as intimately connected.
While at Embercombe I moved through their Leadership Apprenticeship. Embercombe was founded by Mac Macartney an international speaker, writer and Change-maker, the leadership apprenticeship grew out of his “twin trail” of leadership (the inner trail of self-understanding, self-unfolding, and deepening; and the outer trail of having powerful effect in the world). Embercombe inspires organisations to serve people and nature first.
This was a year of learning and growth on many levels. Mac shared many deep insights and learning opportunities; one day he said “It’s how we bring ourselves”. This mirrored what Scharmer’s ‘Theory U’ training focuses on – the inner space from which we perceive, communicate and act determine how things turn out in our lives and our world. My training in Ayurveda introduced me to a model that lays out really clearly how we can change the ‘way we bring ourselves’ by changing the nature of our mind through our choices, and in the process create the conditions for a healthy life.
While at Embercombe I trained as a ‘Performance coach’ and on return from my journey I retrained as an Ayurvedic Consultant/Nutritionist and Solution Focused Hypnotherapist (the Solution Focused approach to hypnotherapy brings together Solution Focused brief therapy with relaxation techniques to shift the brain from beta to theta in order to reduce stress levels and change unhelpful subconscious patterns).
After training with the American Institute of Vedic Studies and working with case studies across 3 years I wrote ‘Your Peaceful Belly’, which explains how the Ayurvedic approach to health offers a blueprint for living a healthy life; one that has the potential to reconnect us with the eco-system we are part of. The book explains:
- The Western and Ayurvedic approaches to digestive problems
- How to heal digestive issues with an Ayurvedic approach
- How to recognise if you are creating the conditions that lead to many of today’s lifestyle diseases
- How to create the conditions where good health thrives
- How to balance the mind and and address stress
- What you need to do to create an Ayurvedic preventative healthcare plan
- Three approaches to the Ayurvedic cleanse
- All about Ayurvedic nutrition
- The Ayurvedic disease model
- The science that underpins Ayurveda in a simple way
- How our personal health is intimately linked to the health of the planet
The sales of this book raise money for two projects: urban community food and authentic Tibetan Buddhism – 2/3 of my royalties go to Sustain: alliance for better food and farming, and to Sakya Dechen Buddhism.
If you made it this far, thanks for reading! here’s a link to the work I’m currently involved with.