Rev. Brooke Winkler with her dog Baxter.  Winkler owns Engaging the Spirit, a body and mind wellness service in Wooster.  It's hosting its inaugural event on March 26 with a variety of wellness presentations, classes and activities.

WOOSTER – Rev. Brooke Winkler understands that these past two years have been stressful for many.

Aside from pandemics, domestic strife, and international threats, many of their clients have expressed their fears on a day-to-day basis.

For eight years, Winkler has provided mind and body wellness services for individuals and programs to help with everyday stress through their business: Engaging the Spirit. This includes yoga and belly dancing classes, as well as meditation and Reiki practices, she said.

Now she hopes to give everyone in Wayne and the surrounding counties a taste of what wellness has to offer for the mind and body.

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Winkler is hosting the premier Wellness, Holistic, Alternative Treatment and Therapy (WHATT) trade show on Saturday, March 26 from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm at the Shisler Center in Wooster.

Tickets can be purchased at the door and are $10. Debit cards, credit and cash are accepted upon entry.

A hodgepodge of wellness activities and regional providers

Winkler spent almost five months organizing the event. During that time, she battled with over 35 providers in Wayne and the surrounding counties and received support from mental and physical health services like NAMI and OneEighty.

According to EngagingTheSpirit.com, at 10:05 a.m., 13 half-hour courses and presentations open to anyone will begin, ranging from hypnotherapy to pelvic health and complementary mental health treatments.

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Classes are taught by guest teachers who are experts in each subject, Winkler said.

Cabin Cakes, the Curry Pot, and Unleash Your Health with Anne, Access Consciousness Bars offer dining options for those between presentations.

Other providers supplement the 13 courses with information on topics such as chiropractic and the health benefits of herbs.

An indoor meditation room and maze will be available to practice mindfulness, while Reiki sessions are open for anyone to participate in, Winkler said. Therapy dogs are also available for animal-friendly support.

Maze walking is a form of meditation that allows individuals to focus only on their steps and breathing, she said.

“Reiki is a form of energy healing,” she said. “You put your hands on someone and allow your energy to support them,” which reduces stress and anxiety.

More information about the fair can be found on their website.

From mental therapy to wellness for body and mind

After 20 years as a psychotherapist, Winkler decided to make a change. Helping people was her calling, but she wanted to do something different, so she researched mind-body medicine.

“When I was in private practice, many of my patients were looking for medical alternatives,” Winkler said.

In short, mind-body medicine emphasizes improving mental health to strengthen physical health—and vice versa.

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What she learned drove her to start Engaging the Spirit as a part-time business in 2016. Four years later, she dropped out of psychotherapy to work full-time.

Winkler’s wellness business offers classes and activities such as chakra balancing, laughter yoga, self-care, and hypnotherapy.

In her personal experience, she has used mind-body medicine to address her digestive issues and process secondary trauma, she said.

With her business booming, Winkler works on her PhD in mind-body medicine. She hopes to use this knowledge to further her goal of helping others.

Reach Bryce via email at [email protected]

On twitter: @Bryce_Buyakie