After working in Senior PR roles in the fashion industry for more than 10 years, Tam discovered that her true calling actually lies in meditation. In the demanding world of fashion PR, meditation became her ‘secret weapon’ amidst her clamorous, high-stress day-to-day environment.

However, Tam’s approach to meditation, mindfulness and ~spirituality~ is quite different to what you might expect from your typical practitioner. ‘I am just being me and that can perhaps sometimes be a little surprising. I actually am known to swear a fair bit, I have a very loud laugh and I’m utterly clumsy’.

In the ‘airy-fairy, fluffy white and pure’ world of spirituality, Tam’s authenticity is a truly refreshing delight. Making the very notion of meditation feel wholly more accessible- for beginners and experts alike. The touches of humour, colloquial language and *odd* curse words make her world of spirituality feel much more human.

In itself, Sound Meditation can be far easier for people to engage in. Tam explains ‘even for experts it can be really difficult to sit there in silence and just do nothing. Sound meditation gives you a deeply transcendent escape,  for many, this is a much more accessible way of experiencing meditation.’

Read the exclusive interview below.

1. Tell us about your journey into meditation? 

Meditation has been part of my life for over a decade, although for years no one around me knew that I was doing it. It was like this secret weapon that I had discovered for myself. Having worked in an incredibly fast-paced environment of the Fashion PR world, it helped me through very stressful periods of time. Frankly, I think that’s the only thing that saw me through it for so long!

Deep down I knew that eventually I would make something more holistic my main thing, but I didn’t know where to start at first. In 2017 I finally decided to do my Yoga Teacher Training in Vinyasa Flow. Although Yoga is a very important part of my spiritual and physical practice, it didn’t feel right for me to be teaching it at the time.

Fast forward a year later and I attended my first gong bath, quickly realising that sounds can transcend you into very deep meditative states. Really fast too!

That’s when it clicked. So, following an intense training and years of facilitating many sound meditation sessions, I am passionately dedicating my life to just that.

2. What inspires you to continue pursuing this work? 

Firstly, I feel as though I will never stop learning and exploring. Starting with the uncountable options of different therapeutic instruments and tools I am yet to discover and play.

From a scientific point of view, I am fascinated by its profound positive impact on our physiology and psychology; and the fact that research is still in its infancy but quickly picking up. I highly recommend the work by Dr. Kulreet Chaudhary, a leading neurologist, neuroscientist and practitioner of Ayurvedic medicine, who has done rigorous scientific investigation on the healing power of sound. In her book Sound Medicine she shows readers how they can use it to improve their mental and physical wellbeing backed with scientific evidence.

3. What is the most rewarding aspect of your work? 

The people! Whether it’s clients who attend my events, the sound meditation community who are so supportive of each other or sceptics who have opened up to this practice for the first time with me. They are the reason I wake up in the mornings, excited to be doing what I do.

4. What would you say singularly defines your unique approach to meditation and spirituality, compared to other practitioners? 

I can’t say if it makes me unique, but I would say that I try as much as possible to be authentic to myself. This means not caring what others think or do; or what the ‘latest trend’ is, in the holistic and spiritual world.

I am just being me and that can perhaps sometimes be a little surprising. I actually am known to swear a fair bit, I have a very loud laugh and I’m utterly clumsy. None of these traits are particularly what you’d expect from your blog-standard spiritual person…

What matters to me are good intentions and respect for the practices or learnings that I am passing on to others, particularly from cultures that aren’t my own.

5. What draws you most to the practice of sound meditation? 

It’s that trippy and floaty feeling it leaves me with for hours after a sound bath. Sometimes even a whole day. A deep, inner interconnectedness of some sort that cannot be described, but needs to be experienced…

6. What has been your biggest achievement to date? 

I get a real buzz out of overcoming the fear of failure. I felt it the strongest when I decided to work for myself. Ever since, each time, it gets that little bit easier.

7. Alongside your approach to wellbeing, do you also have a specific exercise regime and diet that you follow? 

Non-negotiables on a daily basis are: meditation (at least 20 minutes), exercise/movement, greens with lunch and dinner and I drink a lot of water every day.

Since moving to the British seaside, I have been lucky enough to be able to do most of those things surrounded by nature, aka the ocean. I swim nearly every day, go running and/or do yoga. My yoga practice varies depending on what it is that my mind and body need. Sometimes it’s a faster vinyasa to get a sweat on, other times Kundalini to balance the chakras or when I’m feeling tired Yin always sorts me out.

I’ve recently stopped drinking alcohol altogether and would like to fully give up coffee, both of which have profound influence on our brain activity. Working with sound wave frequencies, means I can reach deeper states of consciousness. I want to stay as clear as possible so that I can experience its full potential, which is awesome by the way.

My diet is predominately plant-based, but I’m not strictly vegan. I try my best to be environmentally conscious and healthy by eating organic, locally sourced whole foods. My fridge tends to be very colourful!

Oh, and I cannot be without Kombucha. It’s good for the gut but mainly it’s my wine replacement these days. My go to local brand in Saint-Leonards-on-Sea is Booyah; and when in London I swear on Jarr.

8. What have you found to be the foremost benefits of your practice?

I believe that it may be the solution to many of the stress-related issues of modern life. There are a number of different benefits associated with Sound Meditation, in particular better sleep patterns, increased health and creativity, and a reduction of stress (including anxiety, depression and addiction).

Research specifically looking at Sound Healing is still in its infancy however there’s been many reports on people who experienced a corporeal shift following the attendance to one or more sound baths.

One study by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and National Library of Medicine (NLM) looked at people with fibromyalgia (a long-term condition that causes pain all over the body). It discovered that: “ten treatments (twice per week for five weeks) of low-frequency sound stimulation decreased pain, allowing nearly three-quarters of participants to reduce pain medication”.

9. Why do you think self-care practices have such a resonance with people today versus even 5 years ago?

Our brains are constantly on complete information overload. Bearing in mind that not so long ago there was a time pre-internet, let alone social media. We didn’t have to process nearly as much information as we do now.

Add to that the fear-inducing daily news reports we’ve been exposed to in the past two years since COVID. No wonder our minds are racing the moment we come to calmness.

I think we’re slowly understanding that we’re not in tune with ourselves. Practices such as Sound Meditation, Breathwork or slower-paced movement classes like Yin can be hugely beneficial to slow down. It serves as an anchor and makes the whole experience of connecting mind and body flow much more effortlessly.

10. What would you like to achieve in the next five years?

My aim is to develop my own meditation technique inspired by different disciplines but rooted in my Latin American ancestral lineage. I don’t quite know how and what, but sounds will play a significant role.

What I do know, is that we’ve forgotten how to live in harmony with our planet. It’s for that reason that I believe we should be paying more attention to how ancient tribes lived and connected with their natural environment.

11. What is your message to sceptics out there?

The very least you’ll get a relaxing lie-down out of it… So what have you got to lose?

We are so excited to be working with Tam and have some really exciting things in the pipeline. We can’t wait to share this with you very soon!

@_thisistam

tam.studio

Photography by Manon Ouimet