“Let yourself be silently drawn by the stronger pull of what you love.” – Rumi
I was born and raised in Seattle, Washington, where my journey towards Wellness Coaching started with movement. An elite gymnast in my youth, I found freedom from the worries of everyday life when I focused on the incredible potential of my body. In college, I became an exercise instructor so that I could share the healing gift of physical activity with others, and over the past eight years I have had the privilege of teaching a variety of exercise modalities – Pilates, yoga, Core Fusion, indoor cycle, aerobics, and weight conditioning.
My deep appreciation for the body’s ability to inspire mental and emotional balance emerged from my struggles with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), which I have suffered from since I was a teenager. IBS runs rampant in most of the females on my father’s side of the family, and despite every effort to find relief from doctors and gastroenterologists, it was not until I learned to calm my racing mind– through breath and body awareness exercises– that I tranquilized my manic intestines, and in the process, my life as a whole.
We live in an age of perpetual motion, and many are either unaware, or, as was the case for me, do not want to acknowledge that the frantic speed of life in the new millennium has a serious impact on our physical, mental, and spiritual health. Originally, I was looking for a quick fix to my digestion issues, but what I found was that I desperately needed a detour; I needed to re-examine how I was nurturing myself and cultivate a way of living that restored harmony in my life, both physically and mentally. Upon graduating Summa Cum Laude with a degree is psychology from Boston College, I moved to New York City to pursue certification as a Health Coach at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition (IIN), and it was there that I learned how use food, exercise, breath, and mindfulness to restore vibrant health and balance to my life.
While pursuing my psychology studies at Boston College, I was continually frustrated by Western science’s tendency to compartmentalize the mind and body. I chose to attend the Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN) because of its unique, holistic approach to nutrition and wellness. IIN acknowledges the role food plays in respect to all the other sources of nourishment in our lives – physical activity, relationships, career, and spirituality – and is the only school integrating knowledge of traditional Eastern philosophies with modern nutritional science. My experience at IIN was truly transforming. As I learned to listen to my body, deconstruct my cravings, and incorporate the foods and lifestyle behaviors that best supported me, my health and happiness reached new heights.
I went on to complete studies in the exciting fields of positive psychology and coaching to receive my masters in positive psychology from the University of Pennsylvania and professional certification as a Wellness Coach. Initiating and sustaining lifestyle change requires so much more than knowing what to do; it requires developing a greater vision for yourself, recognizing and utilizing your strengths, and developing self-efficacy. Coaching is the vehicle for implementing the tenets of positive psychology, the scientific study of happiness and wellbeing. Using positive psychology, I have seen unprecedented success in my clients’ abilities to create the lives they want for themselves.
When you take the best care of yourself possible, the universe has a funny way of reciprocating. I feel so blessed to have reached the place I am today, and I look forward to helping others on their health journeys.
Life has so much to offer those who have the mental clarity, energy, and vibrancy to really engage in it!