NICKY Drayton thinks we all need to calm down.
Our hectic lifestyles mean we risk losing touch with what’s really important in life, she says.
Now Nicky aims to help people find a better balance – by getting away every so often from the stresses and strains of everyday life – through her fledgling business Soul Touch.
Honley-based Nicky provides reflexology, meditation, Reiki, stress management and coaching to help clients find ways to restore their equilibrium.
She has moved her business into a sun-lit first floor unit at Queen’s Square Business Park, but also offers a mobile service visiting clients in their own homes or visiting groups.
She is also preparing to bring the service she offers to a wider audience with an open day from10am to 4pm on Thursday.
Nicky realises that people may not “get” what her services are about at first, but says: “I know that what I am trying to do has value. It sounds a little ‘airy-fairy’ but it is very practical.
“Our lives are like a ship on the ocean being pulled by the wind all over the places.
“We are pulled about by other people’s agendas. But when you start to take responsibility for your life, you become anchored in your own life, rather than someone else’s.”
Nicky had a varied career before finding her forte, including working with her father’s wholesale business in Huddersfield as well as taking a number of sales roles.
Devon-born Nicky first came to Huddersfield when she was eight because of her father’s job and admits she wasn’t too impressed!
She says: “My first thought was that I’d never seen anything like it. It seemed quite dark – the image of cobbled streets and mills.”
From the age of 12, Nicky was brought up by her father as a single parent.
In her teens, she went to college on a secretarial course, but realised she didn’t really want to spend her life behind a desk in an office.
“I wanted to do something that involved providing a service,” says Nicky. “I ended up working behind the bar at the George Hotel for a while and I suppose that was when I began to understand that I was a very caring, ‘deep’ person.”
One incident in particular had an big impact on her.
“There was a group of people in wheelchairs and I was appalled by the way they were being treated,” she says.”
Nicky later worked for the British Shoe Corporation before spending 18 months in the mid-1980s in Portugal working as an au pair.
Sales roles followed with firms including Currys, Initial and Maxwell Cable TV – which later became part of Virgin Media – before she joined her father’s business supplying sundries such as plasters, babies dummies and combs to retailers.
She became her father’s carer towards the end of his life and also worked for Kirklees Home Care at one stage before taking roles in social housing and social care with organisations including Anchor Housing, Hanover Housing, Kirklees Neighbour Housing and Chevin Housing.
During the 1990s, Nicky also became fascinated with the world of holistic healing and completed an accredited course in holistic reflexology at the Hope Centre in Hebden Bridge.
Her research into areas such as meditation and stress management has led her to setting up Soul Touch.