“Even 5 years ago I would never have thought I would be saying, “I have my own business”! Like so many of us, it’s been a long and eventful journey getting to where I am today, but as a result, I profoundly understand that we are each navigating our own path, with our own unique challenges and aspirations.
I started my working career in 2007 fresh out of university with a degree in law, but whilst studying realised that law was not the vocation for me. So, I went on to try my hand at many and diverse roles and industries to try and find the ‘right fit’. This included high-pressure and demanding jobs in a London hedge fund, the Houses of Parliament and as a medical sales rep! Even such an eclectic assortment of ventures left me lacking meaning or satisfaction. More seriously, during this period of my life I was living in a cloud of depression and ill-health. Insomnia, weight fluctuations, bad skin and recurrent, severe cold sore outbreaks were my reality. To make matters worse, I felt guilty and ashamed for not looking after myself better. I was completely at odds with the person I wanted to be and knew I could be – health-conscious and healthy.
Almost 10 years on, in my thirties, having just got married, facing a career crossroads, and having the time for proper reflection, I finally recognised that health and wellness were where my heart resided. Once that realisation struck, I knew retraining in this area would give me the meaningful job satisfaction I sought and, crucially, the knowledge I needed to rebuild my own health.
Being based in Dubai, I ideally wanted a course that I could engage in remotely, while offering an internationally recognised qualification that would provide me with a proper platform for a new career in health and wellness. The diploma in Nutrition and Lifestyle Coaching offered by the Institute of Health Sciences superseded all my educational hopes and needs. I found that studying through IHS struck a remarkable balance – providing necessary structure whilst allowing impressive flexibility, and at the same time, emphasising academic quality whilst offering their students an exceptional quantity of support and resources. I have since also undertaken the IHS specialised and highly practical certification in Stress Management, to complement the diploma.
For those of us who have studied with IHS, we know that Nutrition and Lifestyle Coaching (NLC) is a dynamic process that focuses on pursuing an individual’s unique health goals. Perhaps it’s improved stress management, better digestive health, more balanced moods, weight management, reduced food cravings, improved skin health, higher energy levels, or improved sleep? Perhaps the goal is something different…
We also know that the health and wellness industry is overflowing with generic diet and lifestyle advice – what, when and how much to eat, as well as what, when and how much exercise we need – to ‘be healthy’. So now I make it my mission to cut through the confusion and ultimately support people in navigating their own path towards healthier diet and lifestyle changes, based on their unique health goals. Many of us know what we need to change but we simply don’t know how to go about doing it. We should not underestimate the power and importance of supporting individuals to regain control over their health – it can be life-changing. This is where I derive my job satisfaction. But for me it’s so much more than a job, it’s become my way of life, and that’s what I love.
Aside from offering 1:1 coaching for clients who have often become dissociated from their best version of themselves (as I once was), I have recently also embarked upon another mission to provide free, short talks to groups on hot health topics, for example, stress management and sugar. My purpose is to clarify, enlighten and inspire people towards making small enhancements to their diet and lifestyle, which over time amount to meaningful and sustainable improvements to their overall health.
“There Is No One Size Fits All”
I’m here to reassure my clients and those who want to listen, that we are all unique. Our needs are unique. And, more than that, our aspirations are unique. For that reason, I will never take a ‘one size fits all’ approach. My journey into the field of health and wellbeing has only just begun. Every day I learn something new and inspiring that I want to share with my clients, followers, friends and family. If the day comes when that is no longer the case, perhaps it will be time to move on again. But knowing myself as I do now, I am as convinced as I can be, that that day will never come. This is the journey I want to continue.