How IIN Changed My Life (and how to become a health coach)

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One year ago I signed up to study with the Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN) having absolutely no idea the extreme excavation my life was about to undergo.

While there are a million online nutrition courses floating around the interwebs IIN was the one that just kept catching my eye. For one thing, a lot of my wellness heroes had completed the course; Sarah WilsonJessica Ainscough, Pete Evans and Melissa Ambrosini to name a few. So I started googling a bit more and digging a bit deeper. On every search I would unearth another gem and my gut feeling nagged me more.

In hindsight, I knew right from that get-go that this was the course for me but I kept dismissing the notion. Since completing my studies I have learnt to really hone in on these feelings (aka intuition) because if you are feeling something so strongly – it generally means something. For me though I was nervous. I kept nestling in to the ‘logical reasons’ to avoid signing up. Resistance (which I just wrote about over here) was trying to keep me in my safe, small world.

It’s a long shot but I am going to take a guess that you may have clicked on this link because you may have had the same feeling as well? You have no idea why, but you are being pulled to this course. I know at least some of you are feeling that way because I receive emails every week asking about my experience or just how I got to where I am. So I decided to put it all into one comprehensive post because (romance aside) as a mumpreneur I need to save time where I bloody well can!

The keynote lecture in module one was by a fellow named Joshua Rosenthal – the founder of IIN. Whether you study with IIN or not, you should get to know this fellow. He is a funny, inspirational leader in the health and wellness field and his quirky personality makes the delivery of such subjects easily devourable. In his first lecture he said “I don’t know what seems to happen to our students over this year but life just seems to get better. They have a transformation”.

I didn’t really believe him at the time but safe to say it has been a truth for me and a lot of my alumni pals.  (more…)

How To Overcome Resistance: Mermaids, Doubts and Dory

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The other day, in the midst of a rather awkward exchange between a little girl, I found myself asking the ubiquitous “so… what do you want to be when you grow up?” question.

I kicked myself in the foot, decided that I was officially old, and then listened with scepticism as she replied – “I am going to be a mermaid”.

“Ah, sweet, foolish, un-creased youth” I thought. “No. No you are not”

But as soon as I thought it, the inner spunk that I had been stifling so oppressively over these past few months…. she jumped right up and gave me a roundhouse kick to the back of the neck.

“Em?” She piped up. “Don’t you have a mermaid on your vision board”

Dammit. You know what? I totally do. Her name is Hannah Mermaid and she is a real-life person that lives in LA and has made her career as an official mermaid and ocean activist. She – like me – dreamed of Daryl Hannah’s Madison from Splash. She – unlike me – made herself a tail out of coat-hangers and is now an in-demand mermaid that appears in children’s books and movies and swims in the cove of Taiji saving dolphins. #girlcrush

Before you start rightfully wondering what I am on about and if this post is my premature announcement of my retirement as a health coach to go and swim topless in the ocean – no, of course not. This post is all about my epiphany. The epiphany in which I realised that ‘resistance’ is a thing that plagues us all through our lives. Whether we are kids believing that we can’t be mermaids because we don’t have tails, or astronauts because there aren’t many or vets because we aren’t good at maths. Or you are an adult doubting your new career path, commitment to a cause or relationships.

(P.S. if you did indeed fulfil your childhood dream to become a time-travelling-surgeon-unicorn- ninja-accountant then chest bump. Right here buddy! You’re ahead of the curveball)

Resistance is a fear of success and a fear of success is much more dangerous than a fear of failure. [click to tweet(more…)

Lessons About Sustainable Living At The Food Theatre

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When I was invited to attend the “Food Theatre” I had absolutely no idea what to expect. What, the salsa salsa’s? Bad jokes aside though,  as soon as I entered into the Perth Zoo grounds at dusk all of my questions floated off into the impressive canopy of Jacaranda’s above and I stopped caring. Whatever the hell food theatre was, I knew it was going to be fabulous!

Turns out food theatre is a progressive new way of creating inspiring, transformative conversations. And tonight’s conversation just so happened to be about two of my favorite subjects – food and sustainability! The way food is produced, consumed, handled and recycled and the part we all play in this cycle. How we can help affect change and take back the power – and believe me, we need to! And how to take those first tenuous steps into a resourceful and (at least partially) self-sustaining existence. And all of this done while the attendee’s got to eat amazing local fare cooked by some of WA’s best cooks.  (more…)

Create An Inspiring Office Space

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The other day, Boogie – AKA The Destroyer – went all seventies punk rocker on my office. She totally Sid Vicious’ed it. I had hoped she would tire eventually (she didn’t) and in the end my office was trashed.

With deadlines looming and a hooligan toddler to wrangle I had no time to spare on cleaning. So I tried to forge ahead.

In terms of work that day was… how do I put this gently?.. F***ed! I was a mess. I couldn’t think straight. I couldn’t write to save my life.

My poor unsuspecting gal pal decided to visit to give me some support and was met with a wild-eyed shadow of her former friend. I ushered her into my office for some help on a project and she took one look at it and got her Confucius face on;

“Em, no wonder you are scattered. Remember, your outer world reflects your inner world”

The airiness of the statement made me bristle at first but then resign myself to thousands-year old wisdom. Dammit. There is no denying it. It got me thinking. I needed to seriously organise my outer world in the hope that clarity on either side of the worlds lends to the other. I needed to create an inspiring office space that would help me create inspiring content. (more…)

Feng Shui is Awesome (and how to feng shui your desk!)

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Guys, I have fallen in love. It is that sudden, engulfing love that has taken over my thoughts. The lover in question is older than me, mysterious, exotic, super in tune with his emotions and is very attractive. For the purpose of anonymity we shall call him, Mr Feng Shui.

It started like any other cheesy romance novel. Obviously there was the initial attraction between us – he was drawn to my catastrophically messy home and I to his clarity-inducing purposefulness. Alas, we had never really got the time to get to know each other. But then we kept bumping into each other; a blog post here, a conversation there and then finally I saw him sitting alone in a book-store. So I plucked up the courage and decided to grab him and go for coffee.

I sat there looking over the pages and for every word I read I knew I was getting in deep. We moved in together almost immediately, married, babies, yada yada you know the drill. I now intend to grow old with my new partner. Don’t worry – Mark is totes okay with it.  (more…)

Stop Judging Others, Become A Happier Person (plus a short story!)

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Perth has had a long, hot summer. I am talking frequent 38C days so then stick yourself in a car without aircon and it’s hotter. Add a grouchy toddler and it’s worse. All these factors added to my glee when, the other day, I found the only car park in the southern hemisphere. I was beyond excited but as I was pulling in to claim my prize I saw exactly why it was the only spot left.

The next-door car was parked excruciatingly badly. It would have taken a fair amount of talent to park so catastrophically. The car managed to diagonally touch three different spaces and it’s big rectangular butt was jutting into my future spot.

Not in the best mood I started huffing and puffing. How inconsiderate! I bet she was on her mobile when she parked… doesn’t have kids to worry about… is an inconsiderate fascist? Actually… I bet she did it just to spite me. Bitch. (more…)

How To Be Vulnerable (and why it is okay!)

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I have been thinking about this post for the past month and for some reason I just haven’t found the right head space to pour it all out. In all it’s ugliness and insecurity and desperation. Or maybe I just wasn’t feeling brave enough? You see, it’s all about vulnerability and talking about vulnerability is hard at the best of times but when you are being vulnerable about being vulnerable? Well, that’s just outrageous!

But yesterday I decided that enough was enough. I could feel too many words and questions swirling around inside me and writing to you all helps me iron out these creases sometimes (thank you). So I decided I would schedule it in. And I strategically decided that this brain-dump would fall on the final day of a two day fast.

When you deprive someone who is as driven by their stomach as this little lady here of food two days…. well, vulnerable is the only way to describe it. This sort of orphaned feeling is like truth serum to me. And true to form as I sit and type; I am a little lost, a little emotional, a little weak. (more…)

What To Do When Anxiety Strikes

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Last week I was sitting at my desk staring blankly forward at my computer screen. The little gold vintage clock that sits beside it was ticking at me incessantly. Every time it jerked across to the next minute I felt it mocked me a little more. I looked down to the notebook that my pen had been tapping ferociously against, to find it was covered in hundreds of orphaned autographs.

But then my eyes drifted to my To Do list and I felt hot and angry and overwhelmed. My chest was puffed but my shoulders were hunched over as if my  body was subconsciously protecting something. Those old questions popped up… did my heart just skip a beat? Did it just double bounce?

I felt blocked. And I am not (only) talking about the type of mental block that stops someone like me – whose employment revolves around wandering wonderings – but the type of feelings that immobilizes even the most productive of people. A fog that absorbs your body and creates a tangible discomfort that you can’t… quite… put your finger on.

I was anxious. And you know what? I am not the only one.

It seems that everyone that I speak to at the moment, every blog post I read (like this stellar example from Sarah Wilson) people are describing this indescribable ickiness. There has been a palpable bout of rage-inducing communication malfunctions and brain farts that is sweeping my social media channels. There seems to be renewed belief and new devotees to the previously woo-woo astrological belief of Mercury Retrograde (read an all-encompassing article from one of my fave’s Gala Darling here).

Now as you know from my previous mentions of it (here) I am no stranger to anxiety. And though I manage my anxiety disorder through lifestyle changes and choices that doesn’t mean I don’t get side-swiped by it occasionally. And especially when there is this bizarre collective tension in the air.

So how do you shake this funny can’t-put-your-finger-on-it feelings? Grab a post-it and be prepared to jot these things down and stick ‘em above your computer. Try these solutions. In order of importance. (more…)

6 Things I Learned From A Wellness Warrior

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Have you ever met one of your idols? One of those people that – maybe unbeknownst to them – had a major transformative effect on your life. A few days ago I did just that when I worked backstage at the launch of Jessica Ainscough’s book Make Peace With Your Plate and, of course, met one of my heroes Jessica Ainscough.

While I have interviewed her before (here) this was our first face-to-face meeting and I was a little excited and a smidge nervous. My dalliances with ‘celebrity’ have been renowned for their outrageous uncoolness. Back in my party days I literally tackled every Big Brother evictee I met (of which there were 8). I was once walking to a Josh Pyke concert and he walked past me. On sight, I stopped dead in my tracks and fell over backwards (my husband has still not let me live that one down). I also cried when I met super-brain journalist Jana Wendt and mumbled something along the lines of “intelligence… you goddess… me… good… clever”.

So yeah. Being in the room with the likes of Jess, Melissa Ambrosini, Drapht, Wes Carr and the Earth Events girls could have gone one of a million ways – some explosive, all embarrassing. But when I did finally bump into this talented group of people I was served my first of many lessons of the night… (more…)

A Valentines Day Giveaway!

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Valentines Day is coming up and I am super excited about it. Seriously, what’s not to love? It is a day dedicated to love and gratitude and the outright enjoyment of life and the people you share it with. And nooky. But while romance is glorious and all, I did get hit with a lightning bolt realisation the other day while coaching one of my gorgeous gals;

Most women in today’s society have a self-love deficiency.

We are too busy / tired / embarrassed / *insert excuse* to take time out and really pamper the hell out of ourselves. To stop and think about nothing but right now. To think about no one but yourself.

Let’s change that shall we? I put my thinking cap on and wrote down exactly what I like to do when I am wanting to show myself a bit of love. Those favourite things that give me a bit of a cuddle when I am in an indulgent mood, or I am feeling overwhelmed. The things that restore balance. The love letters to me, from me.

And so I created this Self-Love Hamper a’la Emily Ehlers worth over $230! (more…)

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