Have you ever met someone who you instantly think is cooler than you? Not as in trendy cool, but as in your type of cool. They are into the same things as you, they’ve been to the places you want to visit, they don’t take themselves too seriously and they actually have a good sense of humour. Well, Tamsin is that person to me.
When I first met Tamsin, she was visiting home from Myanmar where she was doing some international development work. (Travel, tick! Aid work, tick! Social conscious, tick!) We got talking and she was interested in some of the same things as me and had read some of the same books as me (given the limited number of books I read, BIG TICK!). I realised very quickly that this is someone that I would have a lot of time for.
She has now settled back in Australia and is starting up her own yoga and healing business. It’s not just any business though - part of it aims to make yoga affordable and available to all community members, irrespective of their socio-economic status. True to her form, Tamsin is thinking about the wellbeing of all human beings, not just those in her social sphere. That is what makes her an Earth Champion.
Name: Tamsin Coryn-Wyllie
Name of service: Jacaranda Yoga & Wellbeing
1. Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
Sure! Firstly, though, a big hello to everyone and a huge thank you to Mahdi Earth for this opportunity to share a little about myself and my business.
I’m from Brisbane, and grew up near Samford. We moved out there so that my sister and I could attend the Samford Valley Steiner School for primary school. I love Brisbane but I’ve always had a strong desire to travel and see other places, so have spent much of my adult life traveling and working abroad. I’ve recently returned to Brisbane after six years living away. I came back so I could reconnect with my family and friends and follow my dream to found a socially-conscious yoga and wellbeing business.
Aside from my yoga and energy healing practice, I have a background in education and international development. I’ve spent the better part of the last decade working on projects designed to help improve education for marginalised communities in Australia and overseas. This was an incredibly rich and varied experience. I feel very privileged to have had these opportunities to work with and for some amazing people, organisations and communities.
2. What is your service and how does it benefit the world?
Jacaranda Yoga & Wellbeing is a socially-conscious wellbeing business.
By “socially conscious” I mean that a core tenet of my business ethos is that financial hardship should not be barrier to accessing yoga and holistic health services. In practice, this means offering regularly priced services as well as making low-cost options available to the wider community. Individuals who purchase regularly priced yoga classes or energy healing sessions are supporting the sustainable provision of the lower-cost community options.
My hope is that Jacaranda Yoga & Wellbeing benefits the world by making yoga and other wellbeing modalities available to as wide of a cross-section of the community as possible. I also hope it benefits the world by giving people who would like to make a positive contribution to their own wellbeing and to the community an ideal opportunity to do so simultaneously.
3. What inspired you to create this service?
Personally, I’ve experienced the negative impacts of neglecting my own wellbeing. Through yoga and energy healing I was able to vastly improve my overall physical and mental health. I am now inspired to help others feel better in body and mind and to experience the positive flow-on effects this can have in their lives more broadly.
The social aspect of the business, the community-focused element, I was inspired to make a core part of my business for a few reasons. Having a professional background in international and community development I’ve seen first-hand how many people are excluded from services of all kinds. I didn’t want the services of my own business to be added to that list. I truly believe that yoga and other holistic health approaches can be of great benefit for all and that these things shouldn’t be financially out of reach to the majority of people.
I also see that there are many people with a desire to contribute to the greater good of the community but who are not sure how to go about it. I think it’s a massive win-win if they can make positive change by simultaneously improving their own wellbeing and the wellbeing of others. I wanted to create a business that gave people this opportunity.
4. How can people help your initiative?
You can help by taking a moment to reflect honestly on the current status of your own wellbeing. If you think there is room for improvement - sign up for a class or book in for a treatment with Jacaranda Yoga & Wellbeing! There are a range of options to choose form – morning yoga classes at Lightworkers Cottage in New Farm, an afternoon beginner course at Soul Space in Newmarket, and a morning community class at the New Farm Neighbourhood Centre. I’m also available for private yoga sessions and energy healing treatments. You can connect with me by sending a message via www.facebook.com/jacarandayoga to get all the details and see what fits best for you.
You can also help by telling your friends and colleagues about Jacaranda Yoga & Wellbeing.
5. What has been the most surprising thing that has happened in the making of your service?
It is not surprising exactly, but I’ve been overwhelmed by the outpouring of encouragement and moral support that has flowed from my friends and family as I’ve embarked on this new path. I always knew they were in my corner, so to speak, but their kind words and deeds have really been amazing. It has been a big change leaving a secure job to embark on the emotionally and financially risky undertaking of following a dream and starting a business.
I’d like also to mention Communify/New Farm Neighbourhood Centre, Soul Space Brisbane, and Lightworkers Cottage. As I mentioned before, I’m offering yoga and wellbeing services at these venues. I put this in the “surprising” category because these were my three dream places to collaborate with and I’m surprised and delighted to have this opportunity early on in the Jacaranda Yoga & Wellbeing journey.
6. Who was your greatest role model/mentor on this journey?
There hasn’t been one person in particular. Three people come to mind, but of course there are many more. Meg Berryman of beyondbeingwell.com, Mahdi of Mahdi Earth and Cook of Cook & Kid. Each of these people is bravely pursing paths that are meaningful to them and of value to others.
7. What has been the biggest challenge for you?
I think the biggest challenge probably lies ahead! At the moment I’m still in the exciting phase of getting things off the ground. Having said that though, there have been many challenges even up until now. As for the biggest, right now I think it’s the emotional rollercoaster of fear and doubt which is the flipside to the excitement of doing something new.
8. Did you ever want to give up? If so, what made you persevere?
Yes! Sometimes it seems a bit daunting – the uncertainty, fear of failure, the responsibility. I persevere because I’ve got this chance to do something I really truly enjoy and care about, a chance that not everyone gets, and I want to make the most of it. Ultimately, I would rather live with the consequences of trying than of not trying. And, I believe in it!
9. Where would you like your brand to be in 5 years’ time?
I would like it to be a thriving sustainable business supporting people from all walks of life to be healthy and happy.
10. Do you have any advice for others wanting to follow their dreams?
Honestly, I’m not that keen on giving specific advice - what works for me might not be very relevant to other people.
Maybe imagine yourself in your old age and ask that person what he or she thinks you should do on the subject of following your dreams.
Do you know an Earth Champion? Nominate them via Mahdi.firstname.lastname@example.org.