Hi I’m Nia, meditation and mindfulness coach and founder of Breathe & Start Again. I created this community to share what I have learnt working in wellbeing for the last eight years in London. I want to reach more people who are in need.

  • I help people with anxiety and/or depression – many of whom don’t even know they have an issue – and teach them meditation and mind-set tools to change the wiring in the brain and work towards balance in their physical and mental health. It’s a scientific approach, using proven neurological tools.
  • I teach in schools, helping sow the seeds of positive image, self worth, self-love and mindfulness and kindness in youngsters.
  • I work with people who might not be getting the best from their lives, using meditation and other tools to find the present and bring meaning to their lives.
  • I help people to reclaim their truth and authenticity, inspiring and motivating them to stick to a daily routine of meditation and mind-set improvement tools.
  • I help people become aware that they may be stuck in the “doing” mind-set and show them ways to transition to a “being” mind-set.

Breathe & Start Again has grown over the years from a bodywork business (I am a trained and experienced massage therapist, aromatherapist and reflexologist) into meditation and mind-set work (where I have also trained). This evolved alongside my journey and my clients have benefit from this broader experience.

So why join the Breathe & Start Again community? Are you stuck in a rut? Do you have recurring thoughts, feel stressed or overwhelmed, anxious, panicky, worried, drained by lack of sleep? Do you want to be motivated and inspired to have a daily routine of meditation and mind-set tools that actually works?

Nia in the spotlight

  • How do you want to save the world?

    I want to help people not feel alone. I want them to connect through their fears and not act from a place of hate. I want to encourage people to help each other to live fulfilled lives and cherish their differences

  • Do you have any magical powers?

    Dogs channel their voices through me, I have healing hands and I make people laugh

  • Love is?

    An action

  • Meditation tips?

    Find a place you enjoy meditating. For me it’s the Tube in London. Start small – three minutes is good if that’s all you can manage

  • Safe place?

    In my bedroom, looking out the window at the beautiful tree

Want a Sunshine Brain and a regular routine of meditation to help you achieve one?

Are you ready to work it? If I want to be physically fit, I have to work my body. If I want to me mentally fit, I have to work my mind. I go the mind gym everyday.

This is not magic. It’s a set of tools and process that I now share with others, creating safe places where I support anyone who cares about their mental health and well-being. Come on in – you can Breathe & Start Again

I was constantly stressed and didn’t even know it. 

My life was gradually becoming less meaningful and fun. I didn’t know what was wrong. I had suffered bouts of anxiety and depression since I was a teenager, but they were getting more frequent and lasting longer.

At my darkest points life didn’t seem worth living. I couldn’t see the point. Happiness was fleeting or unachievable.

A doctor told me this was the way I am. She said I had to accept that the rest of my life would be like this. It was heart breaking, but in that consultation I decided there must be another way to live life.

I have felt I was constantly battling depression, anxiety and the desire to self-harm. I thought this was how it was and would be for the rest of my life. I had accepted that because of mental illness I was one of those people whose life wasn’t going to work out for. Even though I was always surrounded by people, I always felt alone.

You are not alone

Even if you are an introvert – like me – you need connections. You can find people out there who have challenges, but are striving for solutions that work for them. It helped me to turn ME to WE. We are not alone.

I had felt alone and abandoned and had always wanted someone else to fix me. I was prepared to work at it but it felt too much and I didn’t know where to start or what to do.

You can be responsible for your mental health and happiness

Realising I was responsible for my own happiness was a pivotal moment. I reassessed my career and business in wellbeing. I became my Number 1 client. I trained as a meditation and mindfulness coach to add to my qualifications as a massage therapist and reflexologist. I began to research – and put into practice – tools that are proven to increase happiness, relaxation and balance, therefore improving my mental health.

I felt empowered and hopeful. I didn’t have to stay trapped in my cycle. I was willing to believe I had a choice, a chance – if I did the work. I realised I had to exercise my mind the same way I take my body to the gym. I have to make my mind work out a priority and a part of my life every day.

I was always told I felt too much and was too sensitive. I needed to harden up and not react to others. I squashed my feelings down for a long time. But anyone who feels – and we all do – knows this isn’t a long-term solution. At times I felt my body couldn’t contain what I felt that it would hurt me or even kill me.

It is okay to be a sensitive, feelings person. It makes you empathetic, creative and a game changer.

I now love that I am a sensitive person. My feelings do not scare me anymore.

This journey has taught me the importance of safe spaces. You do not need to be physically close to people to be in a safe space with them. I myself found many of my connections online. Having “international” support helps, particularly when I can’t sleep in the middle of the night.

Safe places are essential communities, groups and networks

We need them to process how we feel and to be connected. There is great comfort in knowing you are doing the work with people who get you and have the same mind-set. People who have the motivation to live the way they want.

My mind can work for me

Through doing this work and prioritising my mental health recovery I began to observe my mind and discover how it works. What belief systems, thoughts, patterns were not working for me? How would I like my mind to work and how could I detach from it. To not be so affected by the way I feel. To own it and be curious and questioning about what arises day-to-day, hour-to-hour. My mind is a great source of power it’s better to have it on my side.

I have dipped in and out of this work for a long time. At times it seemed a bit New Age, “woo woo’ or “hippy dippy”. Don’t get me wrong. I love a retreat, a women’s circle, incense and visioning, but to really make this something I could live and transform my life by, I needed proof that it works.

Science shows me the evidence

We are starting to see results from the scientific community on the positive benefits of mindfulness, meditation, gratitude and positive thinking. It’s an exciting time for the mental health sector as these tools are been proven to work. As budgets are cut, more and more people are needing help. A fifth of the UK population suffer from anxiety and/or depression and that figure is rising. This work is needed now more than ever.

My clients work with me as they want the results I have seen in my life. They also want regular inspiration and motivation to keep to a daily mindfulness and meditation routine. I’m a personal trainer for the mind. People say they are too busy to look after their head space. I know I could have believed the doctor when he said I had to live in depression and anxiety for the rest of my life. I could have given up or said I didn’t have enough time as a business owner and single mum. But I believed I deserved more. I believed if I could find a way to balance the way I felt, I could give more to my friends, my family, my community and my society. Most importantly, I believed I could find peace.

Bio

Nia is a qualified meditation and mindfulness coach. She has had her own wellbeing business since 2008. Nia has worked with many clients in London, UK, where she lives with her son Charlie and meditating rescue dog Louie.

Using the lessons from her own journey of recovery in mental health, Nia helps clients learn and maintain a daily routine to take their mind to the gym to help reduce and manage stress, anxiety and depression, helping them create their own version of happy.

Nia created Sunshine Brain, an online programme, to help individuals learn meditations that are accessible and easy for them to incorporate into their lives every day.

Nia embraces her quirkiness, humour and ambition to make lighter.

You can find Nia on Facebook, Instagram, Snap Chat and her blog at niadunbar.com