Published: April 24, 2022 | Updated: April 25, 2022

CS gas attack, cancer – how Becki overcame significant life challenges to help her clients

Becki Houlston: “I look for talented people that are ‘not doing’ and help them to switch on their potential.”
By Andrew Diprose, editor

By any measure Becki Houlston has led an extraordinary life.

Regarded by many as the ‘go to’ stress and anxiety expert, coach and trauma therapist in Dorset she has overcome many hurdles.

From losing the ability to talk for three years after falling victim to a CS gas attack in a Bournemouth nightclub to being a cancer survivor.

But then, as a testimonial on her website points out: “What makes Becki different is that she has overcome her own significant challenges in her life and walks what she talks.”

The talking, or more accurately, listening started young.

Becki, who was born and brought up in Dorset, said: “Other pupils would queue up to share their problems, and seek my advice, at school.

“It was a case of ‘Go see Becki’.

“It’s never really changed – I just didn’t realise that it would be the path my future life would one day take.”

Leaving Corfe Hills School without a clear idea of what to do, it was the nightclub attack 32 years ago which, albeit unknown at the time, was to prove the turning point.

Becki said: “It left me totally mute. I had to have speech therapy to recover my voice.

“But in a way it was the best university course available.

“It taught me about non-verbal communication and allowed me to observe human behaviour.

“Once recovered I decided to use that experience, gain qualifications and spend my life helping others to unlock their potential.”

After working in a number of sectors, including IT, estate agency and motoring, Becki trained as a coach in 2006 and started her own business.

Within three years, though, she was diagnosed with cancer and began undergoing intensive treatment involving chemotherapy and surgery.

Becki said: “I never stopped working and I kept it quiet from clients.

“In fact, my own personal battle with cancer drove me to find tools that take away the fear.

“It taught me a lot about myself and, like so many of the challenges I’ve faced, I turned it to my advantage.”

Becki is formally trained in:

  • Life coaching
  • Neuro-linguistic Programming (NLP)
  • Somatic Healing
  • Thought Pattern Management (TPM)
  • HeartMath Biofeedback
  • Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR)

Since launching her business 16 years ago she has had thousands of clients – “at least 5,000 but that’s a very conservative guess”.

They range from individuals and startups to £70m companies and a lot of entrepreneurs.

Becki, who lives in Westbourne, has also become a ‘go to’ expert for media organisations ranging from Sky News to national newspapers.

She’s also been behind the scenes with the launch of many Dorset businesses.

An estimated 60 per cent of her clients have gone on to start their own ventures after losing their fears and overcoming personal hurdles.

Becki said: “My expertise is working with people to overcome their limitations, be it business or personal.

“I look for talented people that are ‘not doing’ and help them to switch on their potential.

“Eighty per cent of my clients own their own businesses.

“Many others go on to start them once free of the fear of failure.

“I have helped rockstars find themselves, reached those that have stopped believing in themselves, returned freedom to bosses, tackled obesity, and supported many to overcome depression, fears, and anxieties.

“I take what seems complex and make it simple using an array of approaches.”

Future projects include a 76,000-word self-help book, featuring interviews with a variety of people.

They range from workers in the emergency services to members of the special forces.

Becki said: “It will highlight those who show incredible resilience in their workplace.

“I’ve already carried out a number of interviews and found them absolutely fascinating as well as very insightful.”