Shiatsu … why I nearly gave up!

I have been practicing and teaching shiatsu for over 20 years. But several years ago I made the decision to give up shiatsu and take a “regular” job.

I ran the British School of Shiatsu-Do in Nottingham, training the next generation of shiatsu practitioners, alongside a private shiatsu practice for several years before stopping to have a family. But when I returned to work, something had changed. I still loved shiatsu but my priorities had changed now I had a young family. I wasn’t even enjoying teaching anymore. I was bored and disillusioned with what had once brought me alive!

What had happened? Somewhere along the line I had lost my inspiration, my motivation and purpose. Shiatsu had become just a way to earn a living. I wasn’t inspired or engaged and I wasn’t reaching my clients and students authentically. It became a struggle and I felt like a fraud. My heart sank. It’s like me Soul was saying “Is that it?  Is that my greatest contribution?”


So I started to look beyond shiatsu for inspiration. I wondered if I should return to my previous career as a Molecular Biologist researching cellular and DNA mechanisms. Or perhaps my brief role in corporate marketing and business development.

But none of these made me feel ALIVE! I wanted to SERVE, do something with real MEANING, to have a purpose that was worth striving for every day whilst earning an income doing what I love.

It was around this time I started to work with Saul Goodman and attended his Shiatsu ShinTai bodywork courses. The focus of ShinTai is the most primitive part of the energy system, the Governing Vessel and Conception Vessel. These teachings have been central to ancient healing practices for thousands of years and Saul had developed the concepts into a profoundly healing bodywork practice.


Somehow connecting with the most primitive part of the energy system touched something primitive in me and I remembered what had drawn me to shiatsu all those years ago. I was reminded that the spiritual unrest I was feeling was something I had experienced before. A recurring theme that from time to time reminded me I had deviated from  my own truth. Gradually through the discipline of my ShinTai practice I found alignment and freedom in my  body and in doing so I rediscovered a path to greater ease and freedom in other areas of my life. As my physical and energy bodies aligned, I started to experience alignment with my own path.


My treatments became more EFFECTIVE and clients were regaining ease and freedom in their bodies and lives too! Right now my practice is busier than ever.  I feel full of enthusiasm for my work because I have found a way to be of service which feels authentic and meaningful. And I’m earning a living practicing and teaching what I love!

Of course there are many styles of this profound healing art we call Shiatsu. Ultimately I believe the value we offer is our VITALITY and AUTHENTICITY, not just the technique or style. When we model our own authentic alignment we help our clients to discover their own healing journey. When we love what we do and we’re walking our own path, life flows, we’re inspired and passionate, and this energy is contagious. It sustains and motivates us and helps us serve with enthusiasm and integrity.

When we  listen closely to the sensation of our own experience and move towards that which  resonates with us, and then deliver it in a way that has meaning and purpose…. magic happens! I hope in some way my journey inspires you to find your unique path.