Derbyshire woman urges visitors to "think like a tree" at UK's biggest health and wellbeing event


A Derbyshire woman who recovered from chronic illness by taking her inspiration from nature will encourage others to “think like a tree” when she hosts a workshop at a huge wellbeing event this weekend.

Sarah Spencer, from Melbourne, Derbyshire. Penguin PR public relations, Derby, Nottingham and the Midlands

Sarah Spencer, from Melbourne, South Derbyshire, believes that understanding and learning from the way trees live can help people to become more resilient to challenges and help them to deal with mental health issues such as stress and anxiety.

The 46-year-old is one of  a number of speakers who have been booked to appear at the Unlimited Wellbeing exhibition and conference, which will take place at Pride Park Stadium on March 25.

Expected to attract thousands of people, it is the largest free event of its kind, with organisers saying that they have had to find extra room for all of the exhibitors who want to come along.

Sarah, whose talk is called Think Like A Tree, recovered from being bed-bound two years ago due a series of auto-immune and allergenic illnesses made worse by chemicals in modern food, washing powders and perfumes.

Not only did she ban chemicals from her house and alter her diet, she changed her view of the world by understanding how her life had parallels to organisms living in natural ecosystems such as woodlands, where they manage to remain resilient and enduring, whatever challenges they face.

Sarah, who is the founder director and lead designer of Whistlewood Common community social enterprise, which owns and looks after a 10-acre site near Melbourne, realised quickly how much her new philosophy aided her recovery and this lead her to develop a new approach which encourages others who want to overcome illness, life challenges or seek personal development to take their inspiration from nature.

In particular, Sarah, who has been invited to write a book on her approach, believes that trees make excellent role models They have no choice but to adapt to the world around them and work with the seasons; but despite this they are surprisingly proactive at creating ideal conditions to live in, planning for the future, and creating co-operative relationships with other living things

She said: “We can all understand well how modern living can place excessive demands on our minds and bodies, which is why we all need strategies that we can turn to when it gets too much.

“Modern life is relentless, but nature isn’t. It’s full of patterns and seasons, and trees slow down for some of the year in order to conserve and store energy, and where things happen very slowly.

“By understanding the coping strategies that trees use, we can apply them to our own lives. I am living proof that looking at nature for inspiration can vastly improve our wellbeing and I am very much looking forward to helping others to see the benefits at next weekend’s show.”

More seminars and workshops on a range of other activities, such as laughter yoga, drumming therapy and mindfulness, will take place at the event, which was organised by Sanjiv Corepal, a self-confessed former workaholic who gave up his 80-hour weeks after realising he was ruining his health.

It also marks the launch of Sanjiv’s new website,, which aims to bring together hundreds of health and wellness service providers under one online roof.

Entry to the event, which starts at 10am, is free and for more information visit


Picture shows: Sarah Spencer, from Melbourne, will urge visitors to unlock the secrets to a happier life by thinking like a tree when she appears at the Unlimited Wellbeing exhibition and conference, which will take place at Pride Park Stadium on Sunday.

For further information please contact Simon Burch at Penguin PR on 01332 416228 or email


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