When I started coaching sessions with Emma, I did not realize just how much my life was crumbling around me. I was engaged in unhealthy eating practices, which torpedoed my energy levels; I was unconsciously placing myself into stressful situations, which inhibited my ability to connect with people and create meaningful relationships, and I was self-sabotaging my own image, which degraded my confidence and self-respect. With Emma's amazing help, I was able to recognize these harmful actions, accomplish realistic goals to overcome these actions, and develop new routines to improve my long-term health and happiness. Without Emma's help, I would still be in the same dark, depressing place that I was in a year ago, but now I feel healthier, happier, and more loved than I have ever felt before.
The first bad habit we tackled was my eating practices. I used to deal with hunger like most Americans; at the last minute, I would find the quickest (and unhealthiest) way to satisfy my hunger, which in a lot of cases led to nausea, acid reflux, and fatigue, with long term side effects of unhealthy weight loss and kidney stones. Emma taught me how to recognize the early signs of hunger, how to prepare for a healthy meal, how to listen to my body during and after a meal, and how to use the information I gather to continually improve my health over time. Emma was so dedicated to my improvement that she met me at the grocery store for one of our sessions to help me choose healthy and satisfying foods; it was a truly learn-by-doing success story that no nutritionist or dietician would be willing to do. For another session, we cooked a meal together and identified healthier ways to eat to aid in better digestion and satisfaction. The result of Emma's help: I no longer experience any of the negative symptoms above, and for the first time of my life, I actually enjoy and look forward to eating.
Emma was amazing at creating a welcoming and judgement-free atmosphere; she made me feel like I was the only person in the world that mattered. She was kind and patient, and she worked hard to understand my situation. Emma's strongest quality, by far, was her ability to be honest and direct, which was the key to my success in her program; I was able to completely trust her. When we started sessions, I was barely holding myself together during stressful situations. A combination of overnight work and poor nutrition left my energy levels at an all time low. Care for my chronic illness became a never-ending cycle of frustration, and my apartment became more and more cluttered. Not only was I in a steady decline, but my space to regain energy was becoming less and less effective. At the time, I was in denial about my issues with stress and anxiety, but Emma was able to dig deep and identify my issue. Every week, we worked to identify a few realistic goals to accomplish, which she called "action steps". The action steps were designed to course-correct my life without overwhelming me, and they really worked. I slowly got the clutter cleared around my apartment and worked to create a comfortable space to regain energy. She recommended using an app to do guided meditations, which allowed me to focus my mind on where I was holding stress. Then she taught me how to identify the onset of stress in much the same way as she did with hunger, and I was able to deal with the stress before it occurred. A year later, I am in such a great place that I rarely get stressed, and when I do, I am able to recognize its onset and remove myself from the stressful situation prior to experiencing anxiety. This has led to better relationships with my family, friends, and coworkers because, without anxiety, I am a more enjoyable person to be around!
Learning to eat healthy and manage stress has had an amazing cascading effect on my life. I had a huge self-confidence issue when it came to my weight, and I was eating to gain weight. Emma helped me change my mindset, and now I realize the only way to look healthy is to feel healthy. Instead of self-sabotaging myself by overeating, feeling nauseous, getting acid reflux, losing energy, and feeling defeated, now I get energy, satisfaction, and a sense of accomplishment from each meal. This extra energy has given me the ability to search for additional ways to feel healthy, for instance, I have extended Emma's life lessons to better care for my chronic illness. I realized the effect overnight work was having on me, and I made an effort to work days. I realized how some of my "friends" and "family" were creating negative feelings in my life, and I started to surround myself with only people that make me feel good. This has created a confidence-boosting cyclical effect, and because of this, I am becoming happier and happier every day. Emma has truly turned my life around, and I do not know where I would be if I did not have her in my life as a friend, mentor, and health coach.