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HOW TO BUILD YOUR WELLNESS BUSINESS - 13th JUNE

HOW TO BUILD YOUR WELLNESS BUSINESS - 13th JUNE

After our sold out inaugral 'How To Build Your Wellness Business' panel in March, we can't wait to bring you the second round, featuring Katarina Rayburn (yoga teacher and founder of Kindred Yoga Studio), Richie Bostock, breathwork teacher and founder of Xhale Breathwork, Tamara Driessen aka Wolf Sister (tarot reader, crystal healer and author of the soon to be published book, 'The Crystal Code' (out in October by Penguin) and Kat Pither, founder of eco-conscious yoga mat company Yogi Bare). 

Whether you have an idea for a wellness business and are seeking inspiration to get started, or are further along the line and could do with some motivation from others in the industry, this event is for you. 

Join us at the beautiful 42 Acres in Shoreditch for a down to earth and informative evening of real and honest conversation on how to build a successful wellness business. 

We'll be discussing essentials such as:

 - The steps the founders took to get their businesses off the ground

- Using social media effectively and nurturing your online community 

- Attracting and retaining new clients and customers 

- Collaborations, partnerships and events

- Funding and choosing the right business systems and processes 

- Plus Q & A 

You'll leave with plenty of practical tips and ideas that you can implement straight away to grow your wellness business. 

Tickets are £15 and are available from here.

Introducing...Otherness, London's new wellbeing events platform

Introducing...Otherness, London's new wellbeing events platform

We sat down with our newest client Alex Holbrook, founder of Otherness ahead of its launch on March 20th (Spring Equinox). Otherness is a new, easy way for Londoners to discover wellbeing events and seeks to make alternative wellbeing practices part of everyday life. 

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What inspired you to set up Otherness?

The idea for Otherness first sparked back in November when I was looking for some wellness event inspiration that I could take part in that night. As I was searching I realised that there was no dedicated platform that quickly, easily and beautifully showed these so I decided to create it! 

I wanted to build a hub of discovery, where you can always go to for inspiring events, to find hosts and try new experiences.  

What are some of your tools / practices / tips for staying grounded and connected to yourself in a busy city like London?

When you live in a city it is so easy to get caught up in the rush and lose your centre. I have a couple of practises that I do throughout my day (most days!), to make sure I stay calm and focused: 

- Three times a day I take a few minutes to take 5 breaths in and out to the count of six each. I do these when I first wake up, during the day and then before I go to sleep. This little time out helps me focus and gets my mind in check / relaxes me. 

- I go outside at lunch everyday, it could literally be five minutes to go and get a cookie! But getting out of the office and taking in fresh air connects really get me back to myself and gives me an energy boost, it can also shake off any stress wormholes / creative blocks I’m getting into!   

- I call one of my friends or family every day - it's so important to stay connected to your support group! Get into the habit of calling someone when you have a spare 5 minutes in your day - for me it's on the walk home from the station to my house and always lifts my spirits or makes me realise how lucky I am to have some of the people I do in my life. 

- Exercise is such a huge part of keeping me grounded and calm, even a 5 minute run can blow away the thunder of a bad day or frustration. 

What's exciting you about the wellness industry at the moment?

What's not exciting! I think the fact that things that were seen as very alternative are now coming into main stream consciousness and everyone is so open to trying new things. For me a huge demonstration of this is Balance magazine in London - a whole, monthly, FREE, magazine that covers all aspects of wellness - from meditations to gong baths - which is handed out at stations. 

What is your biggest vision for Otherness?

For everyone that has an interest in wellness to use the platform (aiming high!). Outside of this it is to help the movement that's taking place whereby everyone realises how important our health is - for mind, body and spirit - and takes the steps to look after themselves in each of these areas. 

I would love Otherness to become the point of reference for all - whether someone is just starting their journey into wellness, right through to someone who is a well worn wellbeing warrior - we can guide you on the path.  

Tell us an interesting fact about you...

I used to be a professional dressage rider! I could ride horses before I could walk and still ride now, but only every few weeks as Doodle (my horse!) is in Kent. 

DEMYSTIFYING HYPNOTHERAPY WITH STEVE DELL

DEMYSTIFYING HYPNOTHERAPY WITH STEVE DELL

Steve Dell provides Hypnotherapy for Londoners at his practices in Muswell Hill and Farringdon. Previously working in the advertising industry, Steve now helps Londoners overcome issues such as anxiety, depression, sleep troubles, stage fright, fears and phobias and more in just a few sessions. 

We spoke to our client Steve about what hypnotherapy really is and who it can benefit: 

What type of hypnotherapy do you provide? 

I work with Solution Focused Hypnotherapy which is a modern, optimistic and positive form of therapy. Using this method, I avoid delving into and reinforcing any negative patterns of behaviour and instead I help my clients build new, mentally-healthy, positive ones - allowing the old ones just to fade away. Now as far as I’m aware, there’s no rule out there that says therapy should be arduous and punishing, painful and apologetic. The whole therapy experience is in fact allowed to be enjoyable and playful; with the delightful added bonus of profound results on the side! This is particularly a feature of the area of therapy I work in, Solution Focused Hypnotherapy.

Working together, we will be able to reduce your levels of anxiety or panic; leave any depressed moods back in the cave where they belong; conquer any phobias or fears; remove a trauma (including PTSD) and make it feel like a safe, distant memory; improve your sleep patterns; regain control over your weight; stop smoking or just generally feel more confident, creative, motivated and happy.

I guide and support my clients to get from where they are, to where they want to be, in a relatively short period of time. I then work to maintain those new-found mentally-healthy patterns. Removing the bad habits and negative patterns frees up so much spare capacity in the brain that the knock on effect will be a wonderful increase in optimism, energy and focus.

How can hypnotherapy help with, say depression?

There’s a part of our brain whose job is to step in when it feels that our life is in some sort of crisis or emergency. It’s popularly known as the Fight, Flight or Freeze part, it’s very primitive and it’s there to ensure our survival, and sometimes, as we saw with our cave-dwelling ancestors, sometimes that something is to do nothing, shut-down and stop interacting with the world.

Primitive survival often meant shutting ourselves away in our caves and conserving our limited resources, while waiting until the weather outside the cave improved or any dangerous threat outside the cave had moved on.  

We’ve adapted this particular primitive response to all our modern day symptoms of depression.  Sometimes though, shutting ourselves away in our cave can set about a self-defeating pattern of behaviour. The more we shut down, the less receptive we are to any signs of spring arriving; and the more stuck we feel. Depression can often happen as a result of a gradual build-up of stresses in our lives, coupled with our inability to process those stresses. And sometimes this overflow comes in the form of depression. It’s the Freeze part of the system and it’s the brain’s way of telling us to do something to ensure our survival.

With hypnotherapy, I can help you reduce that accumulation of stresses, bring calmness to your mind and help your brain reinterpret life rationally and appropriately. Removing these negative patterns frees up so much spare capacity in the brain that the knock on effect is a wonderful increase in optimism, energy and focus. Feeling gradually more confident, you will start to change those wintery patterns of behaviour to more positive ones outside the cave.  And soon you will find those low moods, that have too much control over your life, will make way for spring’s arrival.

How can it make a person more confident? 

Many of us are not so sure about our value in the world. What people think about us not only effects our mood, it also effects our employment, our relationships and our ability to achieve anything.What we really need is an appropriate amount of confidence, an absence of self-sabotaging thoughts and an ability to still make mistakes without feeling crushed and defeated. Resilience in other words.

I will help you to build up your confidence and the way you see yourself, using a combination of visualisation and suggestions as well as achievable goals that you set yourselves each week, so that your confidence moves in the direction you want it to, and is based on small but actual successes rather than imaginary wand-waving; And these successes will act as building blocks for further success. Success that will have the effect of increasing your resilience, giving you a feeling of mightiness and powerfulness so that you can even feel open to criticism and alternative views, without feeling your very being is under threat!

Real power, genuine confidence and healthy self-esteem.

Connect with Steve - Website | Instagram | Twitter 

TAMUKA TALKS: MY JOURNEY TO AFRICA WITH SAMANTHA MOYO

Samantha Moyo in Namibia 

Samantha Moyo in Namibia 

Tamuka Talks on 30th November in London is an intimate talk and multi-sensory experience where a deep soul dive will be brought to life, in the name of cultural integration.

On a recent trip to Africa, Samantha Moyo's (founder of Morning Gloryville, TEDx speaker and leading social entrepreneur) whole life would change when a tour guide asked her: "Do you think people in England would come to Africa if there were no elephants?" How can we go on living knowing that someone in this world would even ask such a question? Where do we begin?

Join her as she hosts an immersive talk at a secret London location to bring her journey through Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana and South Africa to life. This will be a multi-sensory experience including observations, stories, short interviews, sounds from the trip and the music...oh the music! We are so lucky to have Gnawa London playing trance spiritual shamanic drums and meditation sounds by the Ambassador of Gnawa culture in the the UK, Maalem Simo Lagnawi, as well as rising artist and Afropunk favourite Alxndr London. 

We will also screen a short film by Aoise Tutty and Sam called "Come See Me", showcasing their work in Malawi with the charity, Love Support Unite, to see the impact of the donations they and many others have contributed to over the years.

This is a 4-hour experience, with Q & A and a sexy Wild Alchemy Bar in collaboration with Mama Xanadu, featuring foraged mocktails and plant elixirs to address our internal alchemy and balance the five elements! 

25% of profits will go to the Tamuka Foundation, a new project being introduced on this evening.

Tamuka Talks is in association with Truth Theory, a new media facilitating the empowerment of humanity using honest, solution based and thought provoking ideas. They have partnered with Tamuka to co host and livestream Tamuka Talks: My Journey To Africa. At the event they will be talking about their role as an empowering media company, answer any questions and share their vision for the future of media.  

Tickets available here

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INTERVIEW WITH THE RETREAT KITCHEN

INTERVIEW WITH THE RETREAT KITCHEN

Samsara Communications client, The Retreat Kitchen, is a vegan cafe in the heart of Richmond. Launched earlier this year, the home of vibrant vegan food was set up by Maggie Nuttall, Claire Langdon and TV’s Nick Knowles following their life changing appearance on the BBC / Netflix programme, ‘The Retreat’. After experiencing a life changing month together in Thailand, they returned to the UK on a mission to spread their love of vegan, earth-friendly food far and wide.

Join them for their Fermented Foods & Sprouting Workshop on 13th November.   

Sharing your love of vegan cooking with The Retreat Kitchen was a dream for you during your time in Thailand, how did you bring it to life?

It was challenging, especially upon returning to the UK in the cold weather of February! It took a huge amount of self motivation and determination to continue with the vegan diet we had become used to at the retreat in Thailand. We had to make some huge changes and gain the support of our friends and families with our new way of eating and to build our food repertoire from scratch.

Vegan Chocolate Orange Layer Cake 

Vegan Chocolate Orange Layer Cake 

We both had a keen interest in cooking and were always asking the cooks how our food was made when we were in Thailand. We were lucky enough to have a few cooking lessons and got some recommendations for cookbooks and websites to kick things off.

It was very much trial and error and sharing tips and recipes with each other along the way - we both cooked solidly for the 12 months between returning home and opening the cafe!

When we came back from Thailand we made it our mission to bring The Retreat Kitchen to life. The timing was perfect - we were both looking for a change in direction and had already spoken about wanting to share the positive impact the vegan diet had had on our own health and wellbeing.


What are the challenges of setting up a vegan café?

There have been many! It’s been a wild ride. It was tricky to find a location where we felt that we would fit in and be successful was the key part. We love being in Richmond and part of the community there.

We have a unique selling point in that all the food we sell we make ourselves and is vegan but this can also be tough when we are so busy trying to keep up with demand!

It has been a conscious decision to do it this way - we hope that our love and passion comes across in our dishes when people eat them. We wanted everyone to enjoy our food and not just a place that is exclusively for vegans.

Vegan Hollandaise with Portobello Mushrooms & Avocado 

Vegan Hollandaise with Portobello Mushrooms & Avocado 

You (very bravely!) set up the cafe having had no professional training in this area - how has the learning curve been?

The learning curve has been very steep - we threw ourselves in at the deep end and started swimming very fast!

This may sound like a cliche but we have been totally blown away by the positive responses we have had on our dishes, we just work very hard at making food that we think people will enjoy.

We had a soft launch as we were nervous about coping with food orders and even using the coffee machine to make our speciality coffee. But we were very lucky - everyone has been very supportive and patient and our friends and family have helped out with a few shifts along the way! Maggie and I love interacting with people and enjoy being customer facing especially when we get to talk about our food and our Thailand retreat experience. We have certainly  learnt on the job and as our confidence has grown, so has our menu!

You're the first café to get the Vegetarian Society's new Vegan Approved accreditation: what does it involve?

We were very excited to be approached about this. We had our menu and ingredients inspected and we have shown that our products are free from animal flesh and that we don't use any ingredients resulting from slaughter, we are GMO free, cruelty free and that there is no cross contamination with non vegan ingredients during the production of our food. Because we are totally vegan this was quite a straightforward process for us and we now get to use The Vegetarian Society’s new vegan trademark on our menu which is an honour.

Vegan galore with fresh salad plates, Old Spike Roastery Coffee & fruit smoothies

Vegan galore with fresh salad plates, Old Spike Roastery Coffee & fruit smoothies

What have been The Retreat Kitchen’s bestsellers so far?

Our oat milk flat white is the best seller! We use Oatly barista edition which is creamy and sits so well on our coffee bean which is sourced from Old Spike Roastery in Peckham, a social enterprise that supports the homeless. They hand roast their coffee once a week and delivery is made via bicycle! Sadly we are just slightly too far away for that mode of delivery but we love that they keep their carbon emissions to a minimum where possible. It is very important to both of us to work with suppliers who share a similar outlook to us.

In terms of food, Maggie’s cashew cheesy leek and broccoli quiche is always a winner and our English breakfast muffin topped with spinach, portobello mushroom, sliced avocado and homemade vegan hollandaise sauce goes down a storm for breakfast.

What’s your big vision for The Retreat Kitchen?

Once we have got Richmond in the bag we would love to open more kitchens, but one step at a time!

What advice would you give to any would be entrepreneur who wants to set up in the same space?

Know your figures and do your research! Be realistic with what you can achieve. Plan for the worst case scenario and ask yourself the difficult questions before starting out. Talk to as many people as possible and find something that will make you stand out from your competition that means something to you.

Follow The Retreat Kitchen: Instagram | Twitter | Facebook Website

We work with The Retreat Kitchen on PR, Marketing, Blogger Engagement and Social Media. If you would like to talk to us about taking your wellness business to the next level, please email hello@samsaracommunications.com

 

Interview with Kat & Vanessa from wellness blog Brunch n Grind

Interview with Kat & Vanessa from wellness blog Brunch n Grind

Your mission with Brunch n Grind is to 'demystify' the at times intimidating world of fitness - has fitness always been a big part of your lives?

Kat: Fitness and dance has been in my life from a very early age. Growing up I played netball and took my ballet exams with the Royal Academy of Dance. However, as I grew up and went off to uni I lost my love for staying active. It wasn’t until I moved to London (in my late twenties) that I found the fun in fitness again. My approach to staying active is now different and I work out to have fun with my friends, get those endorphins pumping and to help reduce anxiety and stress. I used to see fitness as a chore but by trying lots of new classes in London I’ve found some great forms of exercise that I’ll happily get out of bed at 6.30am for!

Vanessa: In a word: no. After a decade of boozing and partying through my twenties, I suddenly found myself on the wrong side of thirty with a body I didn’t recognise! As a weight loss tactic, I took up running and fell into a love/hate relationship with it but went on to run 2 marathons and a handful of halves. I’ve been an on-and- off yogi for years, using it to counterbalance stress and keep me grounded, but I’ve always had a general dislike for gyms, feeling out of place or self-conscious. One of the main reasons we launched Brunch n Grind was to help others push past their comfort zone and get stuck in to everything from boxing to bouldering, until they find a form of exercise they love - paired with a fab brunch destination, of course!

Do you think it's important to have a niche as bloggers?

Definitely. The market is pretty saturated when it comes to blogging but we’re firm believers in raising each other up and making space for everyone to share the experience. We see Brunch n Grind as your ultimate guide to London’s wellness scene, like TimeOut but especially for fitness lovers and foodies. We want to be the go-to website for Londoners on the hunt for a sweat sesh and undiscovered brunch spot. We bring our readers reviews, tips, exclusive discounts, giveaways and opinion pieces documenting our own fitness journey.

How do you prefer to work with brands?

We reach out to brands that we know our audience will love and we also get approached by brands that want to work with us. We’re continually networking and discussing opportunities to collaborate with various studios, activewear brands and restaurants but at the heart of everything we do, we look for authenticity and aligned values. We know how important it is to gain our readers’ trust and loyalty so we’d never try to short change them with poor content or paid posts that don’t fit in with our inclusive, body confident approach to wellbeing.

Do you have any tips you could share on crafting a unique tone / voice / brand for would-be wellness bloggers?

We started by looking at other brands and bloggers that inspire us to see how they were creating content and building a brand. It helps to draw from a wide pool of references and create a list or mood board of things you notice from their written language and image treatment. Stay open to evolving your tone and branding as you get to know your audience demographic. It takes time to realise what your brand stands for and communicate that effectively, but don’t get too hung up on that to start with or you’ll never launch a thing!

What's your ultimate dream for Brunch n Grind?

We’ve been busy building this fabulous community of like-minded fitness and food lovers
and now we want to bring them all together in real life with a series of events! Ultimately
we’d love Brunch n Grind to grow into a well-known platform, spreading the endorphins and
brunch love far and wide! We dream of one day launching our own products from beauty and
activewear to books and apps or going global with content hubs for all continents. For now
though, we’re taking it one squat at a time on our journey to world domination!

Visit Brunch n Grind here and follow them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram