The Wellness Circle

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The Wellness Circle

Thriving through lockdown - Self-Care at home - Wellness Gift Boxes

Yasmina Lenahan business owner of The Wellness Circle shares how her business has thrived through lockdown.

The Wellness Circle: Background

Yasmina Lenahan established The Wellness Circle in 2008, leaving her full-time job in 2009. Yasmina did not have enough downtime throughout the week. Yasmina felt strongly about working for something that has meaning to her. She is now pursing her dreams. Over the past 10 years she has got to work with top Universities both in Ireland and overseas. Yasmina mentioned “I think once you go working for yourself although the hours can be long, it does allow a certain freedom and lifestyle, where I feel I can manage my time better with family life.  I feel in some ways my work has come full circle, as I ran a wellness service for university staff where I worked previously.” Identifying and Feeling a Niche in the Market – Corporate Onsite Health Services In 2017, the idea of carrying out a wellness programme onsite to help staff members with their well-being arose. The idea came from Yasmina’s own experiences of working in the corporate world. Yasmina outlined “I kept hearing feedback from colleagues and friends saying they didn’t have enough time to go to an exercise class in the evening, or energy to go for a walk after work,  so a solution was to do it ‘at work’. I built up a wonderful team of health professionals and we had a very holistic and integrated health approach. We offered monthly onsite massages, health talks and yoga classes.”

Overcoming Challenges: Self-belief & Past Experiences – Resilience through Self Care

A challenge for Yasmina was that she never gave herself enough praise when working in her full-time job.  However, now as an entrepreneur she understands her strengths better and she feels more confident in her own capabilities. Yasmina stated “I have been able to dig deep through uncertain times and pivot my business. Like for many there have been uncertain days too but I try not to wallow too long and that’s where my self-care rituals kick in to keep me motivated and healthy.”

Yasmina believes that every job along the way has helped her to get where she is today. She mentioned “I witnessed different approaches to the work life balance here in Ireland and Europe. After spending time working in the University of Sydney it felt like everyone seemed to be on holiday there but it was more that the work life balance was right. The experience made me realise we can choose the type of lifestyle we would like to lead.”

Adapting during lockdown: Collaboration, Products for Mental & Physical Health & Giving back During the pandemic

Yasmina gained inspiration for new ideas of self-care at home. This led her to launch her new product The Wellness Gift Box in October 2020. According to Yasmina “each Wellness Gift-Box creates prompts and reminders to take that time for self-care daily with gorgeous nourishing Irish made products. It seemed timely with lock-down with the extra need to really look after our mental and physical health. They help celebrate a special occasion for a loved one, colleague, family member/ friend and are delivered directly with a hand written card. They also can be used as part of a ‘Staff Reward Programme' to acknowledge staff's efforts at home with my ‘Employee of the Month’ Box. They simply offer a nourishing gift experience and I know every personnel card I’ve gotten lately has meant a lot to me.”

“I have 6 boxes on offer at the moment currently through my website including a ‘Happy Birthday Box’. I decided to call one 'Me-Time' as it's all about paving and creating time for ourselves. I spent 3 months researching the market and working on collaborating with award winning Irish producers. It was important for me that each step and item used was carefully considered, for example I’ve used and have tested all products and each item is natural and Irish made. I collaborated with 20 amazing Irish producers/ makers in Ireland, some award winning like Dublin Herbalists, Dr. Coys, The Nature of Things and Mungo Murphy Seawood Co. I have felt a lovely wave of support from my suppliers and Irish goods companies promoting Irish. The Design was equally important to the packaging of boxes and has a connection to nature with my love for the outdoors.”

“Whether it’s to light a beeswax candle, or take a bath or burning some soothing essential oils, each box is all about enjoying simple moments of nourishing our minds and bodies and ‘just being’.  I do believe by creating and adding beautiful items at home can help bring a smile and can help uplift us. I’ve also launched a ‘Spa copywriting service’ to help Spas worldwide stand out with researched articles on their services and Spa journey. I’m  work alongside a very talented photographer, Emily Quinn. Some people are feeling nervous to return to a Spa others are ready for it. Spa managers have told me clients are noticing increased tension in the body especially upper back with working at home for long periods. With my Therapist background  I help educate customers and new clients on Spa services and benefits. It’s been a really tough time for hospitality in Ireland and I want to help Spa Managers, Hotel Owners when they open their doors. I’m looking forward to growing this service as although Spa’s are closed in Ireland now, we very much need ‘Touch Therapy’.”

The Wellness Centre Gift Box 1 The Wellness Centre Gift Box 2 The Wellness Circle Gift Box3

Local Enterprise Office Supports & Networking

The Wellness Circle is based in the LEO Wicklow district, although the corporate work of the business takes place in Dublin City Centre. Yasmina mentioned that “The LEO in Wicklow helped me with my Pivot through their ‘Trading online Voucher’ grant which helped me launch my Wellness Gift boxes on an e-commerce website. I graduated from my Thrive programme with ‘The Entrepreneurs Programme’ & LEO in July 2020.  It helped hugely with motivation and focus going with a launch date in mind for my Gift boxes.  I also had to upskill in learning how to run an e-commerce site and availed of the LEO online talks. I kept in touch with my LEO network group and I felt this connection was much needed, often just enjoying a non-related work chat. I think we are all craving human connection now. I’m grateful for these virtual supports that are in place. My mentor Su Carty kept me inspired with our phone calls. There were certain difficulties along the way, sourcing boxes for example and often delays in deliveries. Seeking a reliable courier is something I’m still looking at and upscaling my business.” LEO Dublin City provided Yasmina and The Wellness Circle with pandemic supports to help the business grow such as the Business Continuity Voucher and a Covid-19 Advisory Session.

2021 and Beyond: Expanding & Exporting

I’m very excited with work at the moment.  I’m focusing on growing my business and it would be great to find a premise I could operate from. I’m also looking at overseas markets for my gift boxes and stock lists.  I’ve had worldwide purchases and it’s made me realise even more how connected we are globally.  I’m looking to collaborate with Spas in Ireland and overseas although I can offer this service virtually. I can’t wait for their doors to open again. More than ever we need human touch”.

Contact & Further Details

Yasmina Lenahan -

086 603 1719

Instagram @yasminaswellnesscircle

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