Grab a pot of green tea and get yourself comfy. This story I want to tell you is a little lengthy, but I want to share it, to bare it all, in the hopes that you will see that I am really not all that different from you. And if I can make changes to my lifestyle to live one that is vibrant and healthy and which makes me feel joyful every day, then I know that you can too.
But I’m jumping ahead of myself a bit here.
Let’s start at the beginning, shall we?
The story of how I got to be doing what I am today
From heart-broken party girl to glowing health coach- a story of transformation
In 2009, I left Hanoi, where I had been living and working for three years, and arrived in Jakarta, a city of 15 million people, of not one who I knew.
I was unhealthy and confused.
I was carrying my suitcase, a broken heart and 15 kg more weight on my body than I should have been. I’d left Hanoi with a bang, and said farewell to some near and dear friends who were like my family during my time in Vietnam. It was sad but also necessary for me to leave and to start a new life in a new job and in a new place.
Little did I know, my departure from that life also signaled my goodbye to the party life I had known and enjoyed for so long, and my arrival in the thriving metropolis of Jakarta was the start of an empowering journey for me, that would see me flourish and grow beyond my wildest expectations.
Still overcoming a broken heart that was in need of healing, and still reeling from the hedonistic weeks of goodbyes, I had no idea what to expect in Jakarta. I’d figured that I could commit to a year and if I hated it after that time, I could always move on.
Evolving and growing
I ended up loving my new life in Jakarta, and I now know that we need to step out of our comfort zones to push ourselves and to evolve.
Not knowing a single soul was good for me- it pushed me to make changes that I knew I needed to make. I joined a gym for the first time in years- having a lush gym to join was something quite novel to me, as there weren’t any gyms in Hanoi when I lived there.
I took-up a regular yoga practice again- something I had let go by the wayside, even though I loved yoga from the time I had started practicing when I was 19 years old. I started cooking at home again for the first time in years- another habit that I had broken out of in Hanoi due to the convenience and cheapness of take-away and restaurant food- even though I have always loved to cook.
I embraced the opportunities that came my way, made awesome new friends who helped me to grow my confidence and I travelled a LOT, getting back into scuba diving and exploring and adventuring in Jakarta and then Java and the many other islands that make up the Indonesian archipelago, especially my beloved Bali. I was also really enjoying my daytime work that was new and challenging to me.
Interestingly, Indonesia is where I was introduced to raw foods, which really began my intense journey of health, healing and positive changes. I gradually lost 20 kg through changing my diet and sticking to a regular exercise routine.
I was also practicing a regular yoga and meditation practice while keeping my diet clean and cutting back on the booze, and it was amazing how I transformed physically as well as emotionally.
Healing and happiness
This is when my soul healing began to happen.
As I healed my heart, regained my athletic body and enthusiastically embraced raw foods, my world took on a whole new focus.
I became a fully-fledged vegan, then I became a raw and living food chef so I could share my love of plant-based foods with those around me.
Along the way, when I was feeling my happiest and in a lovely moment of chance, I met my now-husband Pio. We moved in together, along with my two rescue cats Molly and Geli, and I actually took a step back at some point to marvel at how my life, and perspective, had changed so much in a few relatively short years.
Studies and personal development
At this point, I also discovered by beautiful serendipity, the Institute of Integrative Nutrition where I began my studies in 2012.
While learning to be a holistic health and lifestyle coach at IIN, I started hatching plans to leave the corporate world to embrace my passions for health and wellness completely.
This love of health and wellness was actually not new to me- but more of a rediscovered one. As I started to shed my party girl skins and live a healthier and more holistic life with every week that went by, I was reminded that there had always been a stirring in my heart to be in a healing profession.
Reigniting and reunited with my passions
My interests from a teenager had always been on diet and nutrition- I became a vegetarian at age 15 and at that young age learned what I needed to do to be healthy and to thrive on a plant-based diet.
I’ve always shunned traditional doctors and Western medicines and usually always turned to natural remedies and cures- even when I was living it up and taking all sorts of recreational drugs during my wilder years.
I had learned to be a Reiki healer many years ago- but stopped practicing when I began partying- and teaching and guiding others had been my chosen profession. This calling has always been with me, and it just took some soul searching to find it.
Tools to be a change-maker
It is now my mission to help other women to begin their own journey of health and growth and to empower them to live the best lives they possibly can.
Armed with the tools to allow change I now know how to help people to heal and how through food and lifestyle choices it is possible to transform your body, soul and life. These tools are those that I want to share with my clients so they can reach their full potential.
I know first hand that it IS possible to change, and how much easier that is to do with support from others. I can honestly say that working on all areas of your life can lead to a glowing body, healthy mind and positive spirit.
I believe that this is within everyone’s reach, and I hope that I am able to guide other women to find their true calling and to find their own sense of peace and happiness, I have found mine.
Thank you for reading my story. I hope that it has inspired you and shown you what is truly possible.
Love Simone xo
- Which aspects of my story resonated with you? Please share in the comments below!