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Women's Well-being Circles

Bespoke Women's Well-being Circles

Women's Well-being Circles is a therapeutic group activity whose objective is to create a supportive platform for women of all ages within a community to unite and enhance their emotional health and well-being. I've been organising women's circles since 2018, and it is my pleasure to invite you to read about our experiences here. I am available for bespoke Women's Well-being Circles services upon request. I am open to collaborating with private individuals, ethnic communities, charities, NGOs and small companies looking to support their women on their journey of wellness and well-being. Please register your interest to receive a personalised rate via the contact form below.

Why Women's Well-being Circles?

  • The practice of gathering together with women dates back to our tribal roots. Women would gather around the fire, nursing their babies and cooking meals, whilst men would go out hunting for food and protecting their tribe from possible threats. 

 

  • In some tribal cultures, women would ritualistically retreat in the ‘Red Tent’ during their menstruation, away from any masculine presence.

 

  • Brene Brown, an American professor known for her research on shame, vulnerability and leadership, tells the following story. “Not long ago, village women gathered to wash their clothes by the river. When they all got washing machines, there was a sudden outbreak of depression, and no one could figure out why. It wasn't the washing machines in and of themselves. It was the absence of time spent doing things together and the absence of community.”

 

  • We’re “fine”, we tell ourselves, even when, in reality, we’re depressed, we’re overwhelmed, we’re lonely, and we’re hurting. “We’re fine. We’re just too busy right now,” we say when days, weeks, months, and years go by without connecting with friends. I’m fine, I’m fine, I’m fine. It’s so easy to say even when it’s not true.

 

  • We’ve become so isolated, yet it can be hard to know how to begin building the kind of relationships our hearts need. We’ve become so independent, yet we all long for connection. Furthermore, being lonely affects the length of our life expectancy, similar to smoking 15 cigarettes a day. We often treat friendship as a luxury, but it’s a necessity.

 

 

What happens at a Women’s Well-being Circle?

  • Women’s Well-being Circles blend various activities from psychotherapy, personal development, mindfulness and holistic healing practices. 

 

  • These activities are tailored to meet the specific needs of every group and support participants in improving their overall psychological, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being. 

 

  • They also help participants improve their communication and inter-relational skills, thus promoting stronger family and community bonds. 

  • These circles support women safely opening up to share their stories, struggles and burdens, sorrows and joys. Every experience and participant is welcome and held within a supportive structure of non-judgement, encouragement, empathy and unconditional positive regard. 

 

  • These circles often make women feel lighter, stronger and more confident in tackling their issues. They also feel less isolated, alone, and confused when dealing with their more difficult problems. The entire family benefits when they return home to their families with a renewed sense of empowerment and self-esteem. The woman is the heart of the family. 

 

  • Some examples of activities to be conducted individually, in pairs or groups: guided mindfulness meditations, team-building exercises, reflective journaling, talking and sharing, drawing, singing, movement, story-telling, role-play, oracle card readings, theme-based brainstorming, nature walks, massage etc.

 

  • Each group session is conducted within the context of a specific theme. Examples of themes: nurturing family relations and healing family divides; creativity as a tool for a happier lifestyle; healing childhood wounds that still affect us today; self-care practices for a stressful life; cultivating menstrual awareness; the role of mindfulness in our daily lives; creating healthier habits and transforming limiting mindsets, etc. 

 

  • Lastly, the variety of age groups creates opportunities for women to learn about the different stages of life from collectively shared experiences. This helps younger women gain insight and wisdom from older women, and the older women can experience a new lease of vitality by being in contact with the younger ones.

 

Practicalities

  • Each group session will welcome anywhere between a minimum of 4 to a maximum of 12 participants.

 

  • Duration is approx. 2-4 hours. Circles are held in person or online. Frequency can range between fortnightly, monthly or every 2-3 months, either for a pre-determined period or via an open-ended agreement.

 

  • The circles can either be open or closed. Open groups welcome different participants each session, whilst closed groups require same-member participation. The advantage of open groups is that participants can drop in and out based on their availability and life circumstances. The advantage of closed groups is the opportunity for participants to cultivate deeper bonds of trust on a longer-term basis. In these cases, circles can have an even more impactful outcome by helping participants potentially create long-term friendships outside of the circle itself.

 

  • Each session will necessitate a variety of materials, such as art materials, pens, paper, candles, flowers, cushions, blankets, soft drinks, nibbles & snacks to share etc.

 

  • The facilitator fee ranges between £180-350 per group session, depending on location, duration, number of participants, transport fees and material expenses.

 

Testimonials

 

  • “Expect to be taken on a deep and healing journey into yourself if you join Bristena’s women’s circle. I loved her gentle yet firm guidance, depth and scope of knowledge, and the potent exercises she facilitates. I experienced many beautiful shifts on our journey and felt held by Bristena between the sessions. I couldn’t recommend her circles highly enough.” (Alice G. Bird, actress and producer)

 

  • “Bristena is an amazing group facilitator whose authenticity and deep insight helped us open up and be ourselves in our women’s group. As a creative, joyful and empathetic leader, Bristena shares wisdom far beyond her years. I grew so much from our monthly women’s gatherings and will attend more of her events.” (Colette du Bois, teacher)

  • “I would totally and completely recommend Bristena as a facilitator. She spent time hearing what theme was needed to bring each session. She ensured there was a variety of activities to consolidate the learning through body and mind practices, bringing many deeply powerful experiences to the group. She held the group safely, as well as with care and nourishment. I saw our members grow further in their journeys, and it was a real pleasure. I hope that many other women will benefit from Bristena’s guidance.” (Violeta Correcta, art therapist)

 

  • “Whilst part of my first women’s circle, Bristena guided us naturally and confidently. I would recommend her as a facilitator because she puts much love into each circle, including creating a beautiful space and yummy food. She is also great at guided meditations.” (Diana Mukalere, artist)

  • “I have very much enjoyed journeying with Bristena. She is powerfully present, wise, heart-centred, and very passionate in assisting people, especially women, back to their truth and power. As a facilitator, she is intuitive and adaptive, with deep and insightful practices to share. Many of the exercises she brought enabled me to gain a deeper understanding of myself, connect to my inner guidance and strengthen my unconditional love for myself and others. I highly recommend working with her!” (Enrica Marie Lam-Malek, mother of two)

 

  • “I enjoyed being part of Bristena’s circle as we created a  special space where it felt safe to share our individual truth. I enjoyed the group dynamic as we all brought something that created magic. Bristena was a great facilitator; she created a safe space and ensured everyone could share their truth without judgment. I liked the fact that every circle was different. She had a well-thought plan with various individual and group activities. I also liked that she remained flexible throughout the circle, tuning in to how things were going and following the group dynamic. It was an amazing experience, and I would recommend anyone who feels like they need to be part of a circle to have her as their facilitator.” (Didi Rici, entrepreneur)

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