Written by Sarah Kirton | Updated On November 27, 2022

Mindfulness and Life Purpose with Su Orosa

Mindfulness and Life Purpose with Su Orosa

Su Orosa, Counsellor, Supervisor, Transformational Coach, Trainer and Yoga Teacher, shares some of her insights with us and highlights why we are in such need of holistic healing and guidance in this ever changing world. 

What can you tell us about your journey that has led you to where you are today?

I have always worked with people, and this has always been my purpose in life. After having experienced many losses, as well as having mental health issues in my family, I eventually ended up having my own counselling which was a real game changer in my life and opened up many avenues for me. I knew then that that was what I was destined to do. That, as well as continuing to teach – no longer Spanish, but Counselling. 

I now run a thriving Counselling Training school (South Coast Wellbeing and Training School), which I co-founded with my husband two years ago as well as having an established counselling, coaching and clinical supervision business. I also sometimes run Wellbeing retreats and include mindful Yoga movements too, having trained as a Yoga teacher.

I live on purpose, and am so very grateful for doing what I love in my professional life. However, none of this would have been possible without having worked on myself in the first place. This started from me reading ‘How to Heal your Life’ by the wonderful Louise Hay and joining a self-development course. Later on I experienced healing in the form of Reiki, becoming a Reiki Master healer and trainer many years ago. I also studied EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) to add to my repertoire of healing therapies.

What underpins all of my work is connection to source, a love of creativity and an understanding of the importance of self-development which I am committed to.

What services do you offer your clients and which treatments are the most sought after?

I offer counselling, life coaching and Wellbeing Retreats. I am finding more and more now, in the work that I do, that clients want more than a talking therapy; they realise that it’s important to work with the mind-body connection so they want movement or they want guided visualisations or working creatively from using sand-tray work to expressive art-inspired work; use of cards, etc. I am trauma trained so this adds another layer of support to my sessions. 

Guided visualisations seem to work wonders with clients as it offers grounding techniques through breath work. We do a lot of deep work this way, which is beneficial for those who have suffered from trauma particularly. 

Can everyone reap the benefits of working with a Wellbeing Facilitator?

Absolutely! If you are someone who is willing to honestly face your demons, your darker ‘shadow’ side, then the journey can begin. These are clients who will gain most from these sessions. 

Even if the client has not experienced major trauma in their life, we are all constantly having to repress feelings and emotions to continue normally with life. These repressed feelings and emotions need to come out at some stage, and I am able to help guide the individual to do so slowly and effectively, so as to leave the session with all their capacity to carry on functioning as normal.

In your opinion, why are some able to excel in the professional arena yet are emotionally or psychologically dysfunctional?

People get caught up in their own lives and can find it difficult to stop and reevaluate things. We can all succumb to the temptations of self-sabotage including procrastination.

In the professional sphere, the people at the top are there for a reason. Often they are over workers or over achievers. Over the years, they may have come to believe they are not worthy unless they are seen to be working hard, or that they need to be the best. These are what we call conditions of worth in counselling. This is generally influenced through early childhood messages and these messages often stay with us into adulthood and are so embedded with a sense of who we are, that we don’t realise that it is this childhood programming that’s running the show.

In your experience, what are the main factors that destroy confidence?

It is usually how a person values themselves in the first place that dictates how confident a person may be (or appear to be). An upbringing that places unrealistic conditions on a child to behave in certain ways, for example ‘in order to be loved you need to downplay your skills’ or messages that make you believe you’ll never amount to anything, will mean that one can fall prey to bullying in the workplace or abusive relationships where all confidence is lost because the fundamental belief about themselves is that they are not a worthy human being.

How prevalent is anxiety in our society, overtly or covertly?

An estimated 19 million adults in the UK report high levels of anxiety (Office for National Statistics) and during the Pandemic, these numbers will have increased due to bereavement, isolation, loss of income, insomnia, addiction, etc.

And many people are very good at masking their anxiety such that no one would ever know that they weren’t outgoing or confident. People often overwork, overeat, become addicted to things perhaps. And panic attacks may occur because we’ve been holding on to too much and the system becomes overloaded. Through my work we can gently release the valve to safely let the trapped emotion out from the body so that it can be released. That is the healing.

There are many reasons for this; from an upbringing that creates unrealistic expectations in later life, that looks like over-achievement leading to break-down, to the pressures of social media, playing to our tendency as humans to want to compare ourselves with others and therefore often not living up to what society and significant others might expect from us.

Masking emotions, and developing dysfunctional tendencies such as obesity and addictions is just another way our bodies try to survive. In counselling we talk about Motivational Force – moving forward to survive. 

What can one expect from a session with Su Orosa?

We will both discuss what your goals are for the sessions and whether it’s coaching or counselling you may need. Sometimes you may want both. I also offer half-day sessions that are tailored to your needs. Sessions may include EFT, mindful body work, Guided visualisations and creative work. We may even include some Reiki as another loving tool to help the client’s body release blocks that no longer serve. Coaching is more goal-focused and shorter than counselling.

My background is in Person-Centered therapy (experiential). It is more progressive than the traditional method used and this is important to point out. I work with the person, follow them and keep track of their progress. I get clients to connect with their senses and whatever they may be feeling in their body. I work with the unconscious and the body with the goal of unblocking and removing the layers. The work is mostly about the mind-body connection and integrating parts of ourselves that we have denied or distorted in some way in order to survive.

How does Yoga tie in with your treatments?

The yoga I trained in was Scaravelli Yoga which focuses on the breath, gravity and the spine. It’s really about mindful movement that honours the integrity of the body. This means that almost anyone can benefit from this type of movement therapy. We are all now much more aware of how the body holds trauma and locks in unexpressed emotions so it makes sense to incorporate a more mind-body approach to the work. So I might integrate some movement into our work to help release blocked emotions, holding a safe space for the client to express themselves more openly. It is about movement and getting people to reconnect with their body in a gentle and mindful way, through invitation. 

What are your views on mindfulness?

I like to think I’m quite realistic and practical about how we might integrate a more mindful approach to life – it’s not always that easy! What I do know is that there are many hugely beneficial ways to be mindful in the everyday by implementing some basic practical strategies such as breath work and energy work. My inspiration lately is coming from Donna Eden and Jeffrey Allen; two renowned excellent energy workers who are influencing my work.

About the author
Sarah is a keen and passionate advocate of the spiritual and healing components within the mystical realm of the world we live in. She resides in Cape Town, South Africa, where she enjoys spending time in the outdoors, kite surfing, and playing guitar.