Wellness Warrior: Sarah Laurie
Sarah Laurie is a lifestyle coach, speaker and author, as well as a wellness enthusiast. She works with clients and organisations to set goals and put plans in place to feel better and create balance. We caught up with her to hear about how she started out in the wellness space, the highlights of doing work that she loves and some tips for maintaining balance when life gets busy.
Tell us a little bit about who you are and what you do.
I’m never sure what to call myself – so today I’ll go with coach, speaker and author. I’m incredibly passionate about inspiring people to enjoy their life, be great at what they do, and really thrive. Often we can be at risk of simply putting our head down and hoping to keep on top of it all – my job is to help people do that well, and also find the joy in it all.
After working with my first set of clients early on in my business, I soon realised setting and achieving goals with them was the easy part. Helping them to remain happy and inspired was more of the challenge, so I’ve become really invested in what drives human happiness, energy and motivation.
My coaching, books and seminars are all about teaching people the tools to help us thrive in life, and then showing how to put those tools into practice – very cool, and simpler than we think…
What was the ‘ah-ha’ moment that encouraged you to get involved in health and wellness?
My ‘ah-ha’ moment came one evening on the couch with my baby, when I was home on maternity leave. From memory, I was still in my bathrobe. My husband came home from university (he had returned to full-time study), and said – “you still sitting there?” And I replied, “yep and I think I’m going to stay here – I’m not going back to work.”
Quite the challenge for us, as he was a student and I was the ‘worker’, but I just couldn’t face going back to the full on corporate environment, when I could be at home having couch time with my baby.
When I think about it, deciding to become a life coach was mostly because I thought it would be a nice, part-time means of earning an income from home. I love how things turn out, it ended up being my life’s purpose.
What have been your favourite highlights since working in the wellness industry?
So much of what I do is a highlight– from receiving emails from clients telling me how their lives have changed, through to creating new seminars full of inspiring ideas and tips. Sometimes I wake in the night with a wonderful idea and am so bursting that I have to get up and write it all down.
I also love researching – my research on stress in the USA has been a particular highlight. Excitingly, we are only at the beginning in terms of bringing this new piece of work to those of us that need it most.
I think my favourite highlight though was when Brenda, the editor at Next magazine, invited me to be a columnist. That really validated my work in the early days and confirmed that I was making a difference – my dream was coming to life!
What does a typical day look like for you?
Every day begins and ends the same – kind of like book ends. In the morning I do a few minutes of stretches, have a green smoothie and then walk my dog on the beach. In the evening I write in my gratitude journal. What happens in the middle can be all sorts!
Given that there are so many different facets to my work, I do my best to schedule them into blocks. I have certain days for coaching, and then other blocks allocated to writing, creating new programmes, updating social media (I’m not so great at that!). I’m often out of Auckland or New Zealand running seminars, which is much easier to manage now that our children are older.
My days are full to say the least, however my ‘book ends’ make life feel really cruisy and meaningful – I love it.
How do you maintain balance and keep your wellbeing a priority when life gets busy?
Without question, it’s those book ends – otherwise known as my non-negotiables. Plus I always take small breaks during the day – just for a minute or two. I’ve learned from experience that if we race through our days without breaks and without any ‘goodness’ we burn out, and life becomes mechanical. Moments of goodness do wonders.
What are your top three tips for staying fit and healthy?
- Making a green smoothie to start the day. It’s such a fresh boost in the morning, and I’m sure it’s one of the reasons my energy remains strong right through the afternoons.
- Stretches every morning! Stretching is possibly one of the most under-rated forms of movement – it’s great for form and strength as well for assisting all systems within our body to function well. And for those of us women who are getting older – weights. We need to use our muscles more as we age, because they lose tone, making us more prone to injury.
- Breathing exercises. Mindful breathing exercises help to keep us focused and calm as well as oxygenating every cell in the body.
Do you have a life motto or mantra you live by?
“Everything happens as it should, when it should…”
Sometimes we can get caught up trying desperately for things to go a certain way – this motto is a nice reminder for us to be and do our best, and then trust that it will all work out in the end.