#KnowYourCommunity: Hannah your local Reflextologist

#KnowYourCommunity is an ECBC campaign that hopes to raise awareness of groups/charities/organisations/people that help those living with a mental illness and empowering others.

ECBC spoke to Hannah, a local reflextologist, about her wellbeing-focused career, mental health experience and how she’s helping promote wellbeing in and around Manchester.

Hi, I’m Hannah. Working as a reflexologist in the city centre, I support people to feel connected and calm.
I work with people who are feeling worried, stressed or anxious and support them to find techniques and tools that work for them to feel grounded and peaceful. We also explore their lifestyle and where practical and possible will look at small changes they could make to improve their mental wellbeing.

What is reflexology?

Reflexology works specific, mapped reflexes on the body to restore balance. It is very similar to acupuncture in approach but a different set of points/reflexes and it uses touch rather than needles. This makes the experience very relaxing and nurturing, as human touch is so calming.
I retrained as a reflexologist when I became a mother, before that I worked in the arts and cultural sector as a design manager with clients that included Sadler’s Wells, RAMBERT and The Royal Opera House. I loved my work but being made redundant in pregnancy coupled with a difficult transition to motherhood left me feeling frustrated that there isn’t more support for women at this vulnerable stage of life.
I am determined to provide that support for others, friends, family and clients. I have found practices, therapies, tools and techniques designed to support mental and physical health and have applied these in a busy city centre practice.
I have also trained in acupressure, auricular therapy, traditional Chinese medicine, baby reflexology and women’s health. I’ve taken courses and attended workshops in aromatherapy, baby massage and nutritional therapy.
I love research and having worked with hundreds of clients over the past few years, I’m building more experience all the time about how best to support people so they feel cared for, seen and nurtured.

What is your day-to-day life like?

I work with clients one to one in the city centre. I run workshops on a regular basis sharing techniques that you can use to support yourself and loved ones.
I also work with women who are transitioning to motherhood and run an intuitive birth course with a colleague and provide packages of support for preparation for birth and post-partum recovery.
I had wonderful support from my GP when I needed it and am so grateful for our wonderful NHS. Getting to see the right therapist for you is so important, you should feel able to speak without judgement and be confident to share your feelings. The relationship is the most important thing to look for.

What does your future look like?

I feel really passionate about supporting new mothers. I feel it is a vulnerable time and there isn’t a lot of support available. I know lots of women (including me) who really struggled with their mental health at this time. I am seeing more clients at this stage of life and plan to do more research into how best to support families during this transitional time.

Do you have any workshops or events coming up we can attend?

All workshops and events are fully booked but I will be sharing details of upcoming events. You can sign up to my mailing list or follow me on social media to find out more.

Thank you so much Hannah for sharing your story and for getting involved in our #KnowYourCommunity campaign. You can get in touch with Hannah via social media or her website.

All photos have been provided by Hannah.