Chris NewtonLead Mentor
|This is my story|
I’m looking forward to getting to know you all throughout your journey here. But it wouldn’t be right if you didn’t get to know about me too. So here is my story!
I always came across as a shy kid growing up. Or at least everyone told me I was too shy. Yet as I’ve matured and started to develop an understanding of myself, I’ve realised that I’m not actually shy at all. I’m simply a listener and a thinker, which means I can be relatively quiet. If you have completed our “Know Your Mind, Know Your Pain” course you’ll recognise that I come out as a Contained Type. Someone who has a strong self compass and gets his energy from turning inwards, rather from social interaction.
I spent most of my childhood playing Squash at a national level, which took me all over the UK. Whilst the pressure made life quite stressful growing up it taught me a lot of lessons about problem solving, which has benefitted me well in my career as a Therapist, Pain Educator and Coach.
I spent a few years after college working in Photographic Printing and Design before finding a love for helping people as a Soft Tissue Therapist and Exercise Coach concentration of pain and injuries.
Within a couple of years of getting into this line of work I became a teacher for The North London School of Sports Massage, one of the leading UK schools for Soft Tissue Therapy. I soon became a Senior Tutor for them and I’ve led the development of Pain Education, Assessment Skills and Critical Thinking aspects of the course that have allowed our graduates to be considered integral parts of the Olympic and Commonwealth medical teams since 2012.
I’ve run my own clinic in a leafy village in Sussex, in the south of England and I fell quickly into working with people with chronic pain. I realised quickly that helping people in pain was not so much about the type of therapy you use but the level of empowerment the client felt to feel safe in their body. So I started to pull my natural listening and thinking (not shy!) personality, my developing teaching skills and my lifelong practice of problem solving to create my own therapy style. It’s a style based on giving the power back to the patient and inspiring them to take an active role in recovery by teaching people the skills they need to overcome their pain.
Outside Of Work
I’m a husband to a beautiful wife Lara and father of one gorgeous daughter, called Wren, who is almost 3 years old at the time of writing this ( Feb 2021).
I love to get outdoors and hike or bike the trails near me. We have the Southdowns National Park and Ashdown Forest National Park surrounding where I live, so there is plenty of space to roam free, which is of great importance to me. I also enjoy rock climbing and flying my Paraglider, which I’ve done for many years now.
Outside of trying to have an active lifestyle, I enjoy self development, listening to great podcasts and I love to spend quiet time philosophising on many aspects of life. Most of all, home life is about spending time with family and friends and finding time in my busy week to be by myself in the calm of my own thoughts.
Why I Chose To Work With Fibromyalgia
I’ve worked with many, many people with chronic pain in my career since starting my first clinic in 2006. But none have been more rewarding to me than working with people suffering Fibromyalgia.
You’re a group of people that has not been well cared for in years gone by, by the health system. You’ve been misunderstood, misrepresented and mistreated by our industry and I felt that needed to change. It’s truly an honour to be a voice for you.
I’ve focused my latter career, since 2015, on learning what I can from people with Fibromyalgia and from pain science. I wanted to be a bridge between those that are suffering and those that have knowledge that could empower you and I’m on a quest to find a way to get you connected.
The 2020 lockdown closed my traditional therapy business and that meant the people I was caring for had nowhere to turn, whilst the stresses of the pandemic made many of their symptoms intensify. I wanted to do something that could help them and the wider Fibromyalgia community, so I began work on what you see here today.
The Fibro Project resource you have here gave me a positive focus during lockdown and I hope it goes on to help empower as many people as possible with this most challenging of pain conditions.
In spite of the challenges I think we’ve pulled something really special together here and I hope it serves as a turing point in your life, like it has mine.
So, I’d just like to finish by wishing you all the best and I sincerely look forward to engaging with you in the discussion rooms, webinars and in any other ways we can work together in the future.
In health and happiness,
The Fibro Project.