A journey from mental breakdown

Abi Fenton, who became housebound when she experienced a mental breakdown, is running 75 miles this May, in aid of Leeds Mind and in recognition of last week being Mental Health Awareness Week.

Having worked as a special needs teacher, Methley-based Abi left her job to pursue a career as a holistic healer. As a reiki, reflexology and hypnotherapist, she has set up The Calm Mind Community online. Earlier in May, she took part in the #carrytheburden challenge for Leeds Mind, carrying an object for a full 24 hours to raise awareness of mental health. Abi is only too well aware of how much it takes to manage one’s own mental health and she now supports others to heal.

Mum of two Abi, 37: “I was off work as a teacher for a very long time and initially I was very ill – breathless, dizzy and I couldn’t leave the house.  But all checks came back negative but when I questioned Anxiety, they said it could be, so I didn’t have chronic fatigue, they just gave me that title as they didn’t know what else was wrong.” 

Her condition turned out to be health anxiety, a condition recognised as symptomatic of the pandemic.

Abi in action

Abi said: ”I have noticed a large increase of clients coming to see me due to the pandemic and they have said they may have always had some anxiety or stress, but the pandemic has heightened this that it is now affecting their life and they are needing support to help them.” 

A variety of natural therapies was recommended to Abi when she looked for therapy to help her, and she trained as a complementary therapist and set up her own business in Methley. “I didn’t know how to support myself with my mental health, back in 2010 when I had my breakdown and turning point moment.  But through taking a holistic approach to my wellbeing and with the right support, I was able to recover and use my experience to support others. I wanted to challenge myself this May because more than ever we need to support everyone with their mental health, and Mind do such vital work.  I will be completing a mammoth of events, from running 75 miles to hosting a raffle where local businesses have donated prizes.  I have collaborated with another small independent business to create slogan gifts on Etsy, with all profits going to Mind Charity.”

10% of the cost of all the treatments Abi carries out in May are donated to Leeds Mind, or you can donate to her fundraiser here: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/abi-fentonrunformind 

For more information and to book a treatment, go to:  https://www.reflexology-reiki-hypnotherapy-by-abi.com/

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