Introducing Danni Woodhams, founder of The Soul Space.
Danni is based in Christchurch Dorset and offers a variety of Soul Space wellbeing services and yoga classes.
Q: Hi Danni, can you tell us how were you inspired to start your business?
A: My business began out of need. At the time, I was employed as a secondary school teacher and was becoming increasingly concerned about the mental health of my students. The pressures that students are finding themselves under, both inside and outside of school, are tremendous and only growing. I had students regularly coming to me in tears explaining that they couldn’t cope, and wanted to find new ways to offer support – particularly for those suffering from anxiety and depressions – something often dismissed in teens, but a huge concern.
I had already been practicing yoga for many years, and knew how this helped to improve my mental health, so decided to share this with my students. They loved the elements I taught them, and so I decided to pursue teacher training. I was incredibly fortunate and received funding from Active Dorset to begin my training, and since qualifying have been working with Teens free of charge to help support their mental health and wellbeing in schools.
My business has grown since – as I am always looking for new ways to support others and uplift. I now work with Teens and Adults, offering mindfulness, meditation, yoga and reiki.
Q: How much do you love what you do?
A: It is my life’s passion! In everything I do, I want to make a difference. I want to bring a moment of peace into busy life’s, to help support people in being more present and taking more enjoyment from the world around them. I have thrown everything into my work this past year, and although it is exhausting at times (especially with a baby in tow!) I wouldn’t change it for the world.
Q: If you could go back to a point in your life when you were facing a challenge, what inspirational advice would you give yourself?
A: Breathe. And remember you always have choice – I think so many times in my life I felt like I HAD to do something. Follow someone. Reach some expectation. React in some particular (societally accepted!) way. We always have a choice, even if it is simply how we react, stepping back and taking a breath.
Q: Tell us how your business inspires your customers!
A: Taking yoga, and yoga philosophies, off the mat is something I deeply encourage. The work we do in class is one single moment, but to truly benefit it’s a lifestyle. My students and I have created a community, so we can all help to support each other (both in fitness goals and in life!) and this is something I am incredibly proud of. I know my students are now in touch out side of classes, they lift each other, and they lift me. This is what we have been missing from our society and I am pleased to see our community thriving!
Q: Knowing you aren’t alone in something and that there is light at the end of the tunnel means a lot when you are feeling low. What is a typical problem someone you work with might be facing and how do you guide them back into the light?
A: I often work with clients who are struggling with anxiety or depression. As part of my work, I hold space for all my students – we have a very open environment and they know they can always reach out. Typically, if anxiety is an overwhelming feature of their lives, we may work 1-2-1 initially to build our relationship and their understanding of yoga, before moving to group classes when the student feels more confident. I also highly recommend daily meditation for any mental health concerns, and teach students short practices which they can take away with them to help during moments of need. Finally, we can also build in Reiki Healing to dive into deep meditation and rebalance the mind and body – this is a favourite for all my students! The perfect way to surrender to the moment and enjoy some self-care.
Q: As people we are always evolving and learning things on our life journey. Where do you find inspiration?
A: I take inspiration from so many sources! At the moment, I keep finding myself being drawn to Mooji – an incredible Guru who had a lightness of heart which you can’t help but smile at. His Satsang makes you realise just how fleeting our lives are, and how we need to dive right in and enjoy every single drop!
Q: Businesses are always evolving too… what are you inspired to do next?
A: After two highly successful wellness fairs this year, I want to scale up for 2020! I am currently planning a wellness festival for 2020/2021 and am so excited to see this come to life!
I have also recently partnered with an incredible team of audio engineers to deliver Sound Healing and Yoga Nidra – this will be the first of it’s kind in the WORLD! So needless to say I’m stupidly excited and can’t wait to share this incredible healing with everyone.