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Reeanne’s story: "My children have their mother back"

Positive People - Devon Self employment 07 November 2022

After securing what Reeanne thought was her dream job, working in the frontline for the NHS in a mental health setting, the challenges of the role began to take their toll.

It was having an adverse effect on her family and her own mental health. This eventually led to Reeanne making the difficult decision to leave her well paid job and face unemployment.

This is where her journey with Pluss Positive People began, leading to Reeanne taking control of her life, becoming self-employed,  and running her own business.

This is her story:

“I was basically burnt out. I couldn’t continue. My working hours, as a tele-coach psychological practitioner, couldn’t flex to accommodate my own personal circumstances,” recounted Reeanne.

Reeanne is in her mid-thirties and lives in the Exeter area. She is a single parent, raising two primary school age children.

“I struggled with the stress. The workload and subject matter were draining and over time, my own mental health took a turn for the worse. I ended up being off work for several weeks. In the end, I could not face going back. I left a well-paid job to go onto Universal Credit. I felt like a complete failure.”

It takes a brave person to walk away from a secure career, but Reeanne is no quitter. She put her children first and recognised that her career path was not right for her or her family.

Through a third-party referral, Reeanne was introduced to Pluss’ Positive People.

“I don’t think I could’ve got through this period without Positive People. Initially I spoke to Nicola, a change coach with Pluss. At that time, I was interested in counselling. Having investigated it, in terms of cost and time, I felt that it wasn’t right for me. Nicola then put me in touch with Jacqui, a self-employment coach with Pluss.”

Jacqui is like a ‘tough-love’ mum. She gives it to you straight but holds your hand just enough, so you feel you’re supported and not alone

Reeanne was still interested in work that had something to do with health and wellbeing but she was not sure exactly what.

“I needed to have more control in my life, but I didn’t have the self-belief that self-employment was a realistic option for me.

“Thankfully, Jacqui was amazing. She gave me just the right amount of firmness and support, to guide me, as if holding my hand. She tells you the truth, not what you want to hear. It was exactly what I needed.”

During this time, Reeanne became aware of Reiki, an ancient Japanese energy healing technique that is a type of alternative therapy.

“I learnt more about Reiki. How if we don’t process trauma, we store it in our bodies. It’s a technique to help reduce stress and promote healing. Everything fell into place. This felt so right and that I’d found my calling in life.

“From that point, Jacqui helped me with the things I needed to do to become self-employed. She set me some goals, to gently push me along. It was a gradual process, to pull out what was inside me. She helped me to see my potential.”

Reeanne did level one and two Reiki courses during 2021. She loved learning about the subject, but her confidence was still low.

“Jacqui is like a ‘tough-love’ mum. She gives it to you straight but holds your hand just enough, so you feel you’re supported and not alone.”

Go for it!

Jacqui helped Reeanne to produce a business plan and provided guidance and support on marketing, purchasing essential equipment and budget forecasting, that takes account of income and expenditure.

“If anyone is thinking of self-employment, my advice to them would be to go for it, especially if it’s something you’re passionate about. There will be challenges. Your inner confidence will be tested and at some points I questioned myself, but Jacqui encouraged me to reflect and see how far I’d come.

“It’s important to have someone you can trust and confide in, as it’s all on you. There are freedoms working for yourself, but you are responsible for everything – you are the HR department, finance, IT and marketing all in one.”

Leaving the security of paid employment was a big step for Reeanne. Today, she has her own business, with paying clients and now has a sense of control in her life and career again.

“My children are my number one priority. They say they’ve got their mum back. Before I wasn’t able to be there in the mornings and when I got home I was so exhausted, I wasn’t able to give them the time they needed. That’s all changed now and I’m grateful to Jacqui and the Positive People programme for all their support.”

To find out more about Reeanne’s Reiki therapy, visit her website: or find her on Instagram @reikiwithree87.

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