About

About Sheila Bayliss

Hello, I’m Sheila – I created Lollipop Wellbeing to provide accessible resources for people wishing to reduce stress or improve wellbeing.  I believe that you don’t need to remove all the difficulties from your life to find more ease and confidence, that it is possible to thrive even when life is a bumpy ride! 

Using approaches rooted in mindfulness, kindness and awareness, I help people learn how to respond more positively to life’s challenges. I am particularly passionate about the  power of self-kindness for building emotional confidence – from both my own experience and seeing the impact on the hundreds of people I’ve taught. These are a couple of my blog posts about my own experiences (you can find more via the homepage):

How To Be Happy, Just As You Are

Why Mindfulness Needs Kindness

I hold classes and workshops in Heaton Moor, South Manchester that are suitable for all levels.  You can read a bit more about me at the bottom of this page, including my personal story and my qualifications.

For class details, see the Prices page.   If you’re not in Manchester, you might like to check out my book  ‘Mindfulness Inspiration: 50+ Ideas for Mindful Living(click here to view on Amazon), or take a look at the free resources on the home page.

“I highly recommend Sheila’s classes, and really enjoy her approach to mindfulness with kindness.  I have found her meditation classes very beneficial in my everyday life – I have noticed that I am more aware of my feelings and thoughts and am responding to issues in my life differently.”

 “The most powerful thing from sessions with Sheila has got to be my positive mindset changes”

 

About My Approach

I’m qualified in both mindfulness teaching and personal coaching.  I’ve been practising mindfulness for myself since 2008.  Everything I share is drawn from personal experience aswell as the many people I’ve taught – so I know it works!  I strongly believe in laying a solid foundation of self-kindness to boost the impact of mindfulness, and this approach is weaved into all of my work.  In addition, I use my coaching skills to create accessible tools for living mindfully – without doing sitting meditation (or alongside it if you want to do both).  My aim with drop-in classes and workshops is to share some of these ideas, and help you come up with your own.  My approach isn’t too prescriptive, encouraging you to uncover and follow your own natural wisdom as you experiment to find your own path.

People typically experience these kind of changes as they engage with my approach over time:

Positivity is boosted by learning how to move from ‘avoid’ to ‘approach’ mode.  Mindful coaching tools provide a framework for opening up to life more fully, and being able to bounce back when you get knocked.

Calm is accessed by choosing a new response to challenges.  Mindful awareness grows as you explore your personal experience, and then create your own strategies for greater ease and wellbeing.

Emotional Confidence is increased through applying mindfulness to difficulty.   By learning how to lean into self-kindness during challenging experiences, a new resilience is discovered. 

What people say about working with me

You’ll see various quotes featured throughout the site, and here are a few more comments from those I’ve worked with and taught in classes:

  • “I’m feeling so much calmer and more joyful”
  • “I feel like I know myself better now, look after myself more and I am much happier with who I am”
  • “Life is easier, more fun & less stressful”
  • “I have discovered techniques that have really worked for me… to find a greater sense of calm and inner belief and self confidence”
  • “Sheila was very supportive and insightful”
  • “Your approach is supportive and non-judgmental – thank you”

Sometimes people wonder if what I do is the same as therapy.  The answer is no.  I’m a trained coach with solid experience of teaching mindfulness, but I’m not a therapist.  I’ve taught hundreds of people to use mindfulness and self-kindness in their own lives, to reduce stress and build emotional confidence.  This approach involves being very human, it can help you to work with uncomfortable feelings, and it can be deeply healing.  But it is not intended to address debilitating mental health issues – to read more below about whether I might be a good fit for your needs, visit the section called ‘Is This Approach Suitable for Your Needs?’ on the Prices page (scroll to the bottom), or click here for the same info.  My qualifications and experience are listed in ‘A bit about me’.

For session dates, costs and booking, see the Prices page.

 

More About Mindfulness, Self-Kindness and Awareness

Mindfulness means being with our experience in a gentle, accepting way.  When stressed, we have a tendency to be stuck in our heads, thinking and problem-solving.  With mindful awareness, we learn to inhabit our direct, sensory experience in the body, and this gives us more choice in how we respond to difficulty.  Through learning to be with all of our experience – even the difficult parts – we build emotional confidence.  I share mindfulness with a strong emphasis on kindness and compassion (including self-kindness, which is extremely powerful in helping us cope with difficulty).

What are the benefits?

Research shows that mindfulness reduces stress and improves wellbeing.  I can personally say that it has helped me feel much more calm and positive in the face of many life challenges. Mindfulness isn’t a quick fix, but it does have profound & lasting benefits when you make it a habit.  

So how does it work?

Mindfulness is practised by engaging in regular meditation.  But it may not be what you associate with the word ‘meditation’.  There are sitting practices that can be done while being guided.  These include focusing on the body, the breath or feelings of kindness.  There are also ways to bring mindful awareness to whatever we’re doing, and this all counts as meditation.  Over time, meditating regularly starts to have a positive impact on how we are generally.  It’s a bit like training to get fit: when practised regularly, it has a cumulative effect, re-wiring the brain to create new neural pathways.  Although practising meditation will greatly enhance the benefits, it is possible to start becoming more mindful of your habitual responses by using mindful awareness tools in daily life.

What’s the best way to learn?

Most people find that some guidance is helpful initially via a class or course of some kind.  This can be especially helpful if you think you’re ‘no good at meditating’ – I talk about my approach to making meditation easier here.  Being able to access regular sessions helps with motivation to keep your own practice going (read more about that here).  It can also be useful to connect with other people who are learning. You can get CD’s or downloads with guided meditations to listen to at home.  My recordings can be found in the list of free resources via the Home page.  A great free online resource to enable you to swap notes with others just starting to learn is Everyday Mindfulness

If you’re not quite ready for regular meditation, but you want to develop a more mindful response to worry, stress and overwhelm – you can still learn to live more mindfully in everyday life.  I share tips on how to do this in my classes, in my book and via my monthly mailing list – you can sign up for free emails on the Home page.  Although it’s true that sitting meditation enhances the benefits of mindfulness, you can also develop your own set of tools that can be used whether you meditate or not.

Are all classes the same?

There are different types of courses and classes.  My approach is helpful for stress, but is not intended to provide support for debilitating mental health issues.  If you have been diagnosed with (or suspect you may have) a mental health condition such as depression or an anxiety disorder, you can ask your GP about a referral to a Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy course (MBCT) – this is different from the classes I offer.  To learn more about this, visit the section called ‘Is This Approach Suitable for Your Needs?’ on the Prices page (scroll to the bottom), or click here for the same info.  You can also find out more at the Mental Health Foundation website called Be Mindful 

This blog post I wrote called 7 Meditation Myths is a good read to dispel some of the common misconceptions that might be stopping you from trying out mindfulness.  And if you like to read books, my Top 10 Reading List might interest you.  If you’re ready to try a class, go to the Prices page for my teaching schedule.  Or read on for a bit more about the way I teach.

“I have previously struggled with meditation, but I found that Sheila’s mindfulness session brought me a deeper sense of being, of relaxation”
 

A bit about me

My philosophy is that you can’t control what happens in life, but you can choose a positive response.  I had always suffered with stress and anxiety, and had tried pretty much every self-help book going.  By the time I hit my 30s, I was frustrated to find myself still struggling with the same old issues.  I had a seemingly impressive (but also demanding) job in the TV industry, but I was miserable.  Then when I also started experiencing recurrent miscarriages, my stress levels became unmanageable.   I was lucky enough to stumble across a mindfulness course, which was the beginning of my journey in building up my own meditation practice. 

Learning mindfulness and self-kindness was a total game-changer for me in terms of how I respond to difficult feelings like anxiety, sadness and self-criticism. After leaving my job, I felt very fortunate that we eventually became parents when our little boy arrived.  In terms of my career – I had always enjoyed helping my staff to manage their stress, and with a background in volunteer helpline work, it felt important to me to find a way to support others dealing with worry, stress and overwhelm.

I re-trained as a coach and gained a Diploma in Personal Coaching which enabled me to help clients feel more calm and emotionally confident.  As my personal mindfulness practice developed, it also felt natural to want to share this with others, so I also completed the Breathworks mindfulness teacher training (which has a strong emphasis on the kindness element of mindfulness).  I’m now a Breathworks accredited teacher and associate – this means that I meet the UK Network for Mindfulness Teachers guidelines for best practice.  I have also been approved as a mindfulness teacher on the UK Network listing – you can look me up on there by searching ‘Sheila Bayliss’.  Since qualification I have taught hundreds of people to use mindfulness and self-kindness in their daily lives.

These days I rely on my own meditation practice to help me meet the difficulties that life inevitably throws up, and to balance all the things that are important to me.

You can read plenty about me and my journey from reading my blogs – check out the links on the Home page.  In the past I have written blogs about how mindfulness and self-compassion helped me cope with infertility and loss.  The website these were published on is no longer live, but I am currently compiling them into a book – if you would like to be notified when this is available, please drop me an email via the Contact page.

 

mindful living for new possibilities…

 

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