Who I am

Jackie McGarry
Jackie McGarry

As a trained Mindfulness Teacher, I am registered with the UK Teachers Network Listing which requires teachers to demonstrate they are experienced, fully trained by a recognised institution and are committed to their own professional development as well as their personal practice. I’ve been practising mindfulness meditation for over 20 years and formally teaching mindfulness for the past seven years.

In 2008 I participated in my first MBSR (Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction) course led by Michael Chaskalson of Mindfulness Works. Having qualified as a mental health nurse in 1999, I began using mindfulness therapeutically with clients after attending a course on Teaching Mindfulness One to One led by Cindy Cooper and Eluned Gold, both senior teachers with the Centre for Mindfulness Research and Practice, Bangor University in 2010.

I completed the first level of training as a MBSR teacher in early 2013 (Teacher Training Course 1 – again with CMRP and Cindy) and then in January 2016, I completed a further stage of mindfulness teacher training – Teacher Training Retreat 2 which is for those who have experience of teaching several MBSR courses.  In December 2015 I also did the Mindfulness in Schools Project (MiSP) dot.Be Foundations training in delivering a tailored mindfulness course for school teachers. In addition over the last two years I have participated in 2 day training workshops on Mindful Movement with Sarah Silverton and more recently Mindful Inquiry with Cindy Cooper – both key components of the MBSR course. I am committed to ongoing training, a vital facet of being an effective, authentic mindfulness teacher.

For the last 7 years I have been leading regular mindfulness groups within the NHS. In 2014, I took the decision to focus more fully on mindfulness teaching, taking this out into the wider community, though  I continue to work in the NHS as well  as a Community Mental Health Nurse, where I have experience in supporting people wanting to recover from addiction to drugs and alcohol and more recently with people experiencing psychosis. I have experience too of running a mindfulness drop-in group on a voluntary basis at The Welcome Project in Camberley (an open access service for people experiencing mental health problems).

Mindfulness practice is very much a part of my whole life, not just professionally.  For the past 8 years I have facilitated a community meditation group which meets once a month for a day of practice. Having seen the benefits of a regular mindfulness practice in my own life, as well as in the lives of people I work with, who have complex and challenging mental health needs, I am passionate about sharing this with more people and continuing to develop as a teacher.

In line with the UK Mindfulness Teachers’ Good Practice guidelines, I am committed to my own mindfulness practice and attend retreats and specialist teacher training days and weekends regularly.  I have supervision with Chantek McNeilage, also a Senior Teacher with CMRP, Bangor University.

I am a founding member of the West Surrey Mindfulness Network, a new local initiative bringing together mindfulness teachers for peer support and joint working. The website also aims to be a resource for those looking for information on what mindfulness courses are available throughout the area, with the security of knowing that any teacher listed will have met the criteria specified in the UK Mindfulness Teachers Good Practice Guidelines.

I enjoy writing about my own practice and reflections on mindfulness in general which you can check out on my blog here.

You can also find my Facebook page here on which I post video clips, articles and other interesting mindfulness related news as well as updates about my courses.