Highlighting Our Graduates – Jacquie Dunbar
This month we want you to meet ACMM graduate Jacquie Dunbar! She is mum and teacher based in Mount Gravatt, Brisbane who also offers meditation and journalling classes for women online. Jacquie was inspired to pursue a career in meditation after attending a talk by Ian Gawler over 11 years ago.
Continue reading about her journey on becoming a meditation teacher.
Hi Jacquie! Tell us a little bit about yourself
I live in Brisbane, Mount Gravatt with my three children and husband of 19 years, Jock. I’m interested in relationships and how childhood attachments impact adult relationships. After teaching year 6 last year I’m returning to university to continue a Master of Counselling specialising in trauma. I graduated with an Advanced Certificate in Meditation with ACMM in 2019 and completed my post-graduate diploma last year.
I run a meditation and journalling class for women online and work as a relief teacher part time. My passions include writing, counselling, mind-body-heart connection meditations, teaching adults and reading books by Brene Browne and watching anything in the Star Wars universe.
What attracted you to become a meditation teacher and study with ACMM?
I first became interested in meditation 11 years ago when I went to hear Ian Gawler speak at the Relaxation Centre in Queensland. From then on I’ve been curious about meditation, and at different times various meditation groups. I wanted to learn a broad range of meditation techniques and after researching places to study, so ACMM was the right choice for me.
How has meditation impacted you on a personal level – what are the benefits you have seen?
Meditation has assisted me to be more mindful in everyday life. It’s so easy to get caught up in the speed of life, and meditation assists me to slow down. Meditation also assists me to connect with myself and get comfortable being in my own company or to worry less about something that might be playing on my mind, whether it’s work issue or a relationship thing or both. I’m looking forward to continuing my meditation journey to better enable my role as counsellor to support others and hold a sacred space for them.
What does your personal meditation practice look like? What styles or types of meditation do you enjoy?
I generally meditate evenings, but I particularly noticed the impact meditation has on my nerves in the mornings before work. I enjoy meditation that has a combination of body connection and emotional awareness. This might look like something similar to a one seat meditation. I enjoy Matt Licata for reflective and insight meditations and Jeff Foster to sit in self-compassion and the one seat. There is no expectation of anything changing during the meditation, simply embracing what is present. It sounds simple but when feelings are uncomfortable it can be very challenging.
Do you have your own meditation/mindfulness/holistic business, plans to start one?
I have Jacquie Dunbar Mindfulness and Meditation which started almost two years ago in person and then moved to Zoom online. I run a one-hour class on Sunday evenings for women where they journal, and I guide a 25–35 minute meditation. I run a different theme each month. The meditation always begins with a grounding towards the senses, supporting emotions followed by body connection and moving into a technique (e.g. loving kindness, or sound) and silent time.
This month our theme is trust. Classes are designed for busy women of all ages who are looking to pause from their ‘to do’ lists and take time out for themselves to journal and meditate in a group.
I am also available for guided meditation sessions one to one online.
I am currently studying to be a counsellor and mindfulness skills are essential for people who work in this space to better support themselves and their clients. I also use meditation to assist me in feeling grounded and centred at school with students in every class I teach. Last year I had the opportunity to teach mindfulness to my class and I would like to do that again in the future.
Do you have any classes or workshops coming up?
I run a class every Sunday evening https://JacquieDunbarMindfulnessBooking.as.me/SundayZoomClass and I’m hoping to do a self-compassion workshop in the next few months which will be announced on Instagram and Facebook. I also write on Medium about mediation, parenting or things that challenge or change my perception of the world.
What would you say to someone who is thinking about becoming a meditation teacher?
Do it! What have you got to lose? At the very least you will get to have a better understanding of what meditation is, what meditations you enjoy more, perhaps gain some new skills, perhaps grow in self-awareness and self-compassion, and maybe change your life.
What have you enjoyed about studying at ACMM?
I enjoyed the flexibility of it. It took me two years to do the advanced certificate and I had to defer for a few months during that time due to work commitments. I also valued learning from my coach Morgan, who is an experienced meditator along the way. The study isn’t like study at a university, it’s more reflective and experiential. I struggled with trying to get meditation ‘right’ but I slowly learnt that you can’t actually get it wrong. It’s about having a beginner’s mind with meditation. I remind myself of this even now.
You can find out more about Jacquie and her classes at: