My fascination with how our minds work led me to study Psychology, first at College and then University, with my Degree focusing on aspects such as Emotional Intelligence, Relationships, Anxiety, and Child Psychology. My time at school and University was punctuated – like it is for so many others – by bouts of anxiety and stress. I was terrified of public speaking, so much so that I was prescribed anti-anxiety medication before a presentation just to keep my nerves in check! After a lot of work I actually enjoy it now and it forms a big part of what I do.
My career path after University was unconventional to say the least. But it was based on an overwhelming desire to help people improve their lives.
First I set up a dating agency, to help people find love. It was a real eye-opener. People put so much pressure on themselves to form relationships, while the anxiety some felt before going on a date was, at times, over-powering. Plus, as a gay man myself, I was aware of the issues around confidence and social anxiety that face certain groups (such as the LGBTQ+ community), and I was determined to help anyone who, like me at the time, encounters anxiety or confidence issues when building relationships and dealing with social situations.
I loved the idea of helping people, but the reality was that running my own business was more about the commercial details than compassionate ones, so I looked for a change. Around that time I spent a few days in a school. I immediately loved the atmosphere and the idea of working with and helping children so I took a teacher training course, and got a job in a school.
As a child I’d been incredibly shy, suffering regular bouts of social anxiety. So I could really empathise with the children I was talking to, helping them with their anxieties ahead of tests, or dealing with their social problems. Quickly I progressed through the ranks and became Assistant Headteacher at a school in Hampshire, where a big part of my role was coaching teachers. Mindfulness was introduced as a way of helping children become more resilient and relaxed (along with proven benefits of helping teachers deal with the pressures of the job), and I was hooked. This was what I wanted to be doing; teaching people ways of overcoming stress and anxiety and, in doing so, reaching their full potential.
So in the summer of 2017, I decided to leave the school and set up Train Your Mind. I immersed myself in training, building on my Psychology degree by earning a Diploma in Cognitive Behavioural Hypnotherapy from an industry-leading training college, the UK College of Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy, and a certificate in Mindfulness Teaching from the UK College of Mindfulness and Meditation before the end of the year. This was followed by a Diploma in Stress Management and Resilience Building, training in ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, often used if CBT hasn’t worked), PTSD & Panic Disorders, and Insomnia, among other things.
I have also completed a great deal of training in Mental Health, including Mental Health First Aid, Suicide Awareness & First Aid, Mental Health in the Workplace and much more. I have a passion for mental health and wellbeing and run a free monthly mental health awareness talk as well as volunteering and supporting the community however I can.
With my teaching background, as well as working with individuals, I love working with groups. So I deliver a range of courses to schools, colleges, Universities, businesses, charities and other organisations, from very small businesses to those with offices across the country. I understand how to make training and learning interesting and how to create lasting change. I work closely with managers, CEOs, Education leaders, HR departments and in-house training teams to deliver the training that best suits them. As well as my own training courses I deliver training for Solent Mind as their Workplace Wellbeing Trainer. To find out more click on Workplace.
As a fully-qualified Cognitive Behavioural Hypnotherapist, Mental Health and Wellbeing Trainer & Consultant, Mindfulness Teacher and Coach, I now combine first-class training and qualifications with first-hand experience of many of the issues you may well be going through. I am always studying and developing my knowledge, so that my techniques are up-to-date and proven to be best practice. I’ll never stop learning, and I’ll never stop wanting to help people like you. Want to know any more? Just contact me for a chat!