Having spent several years working at one of the largest firms in London, I was offered a job working as a lawyer for a small renewable energy company in Monaco. Having already put in the long hours working under intense pressure in London, life in Monaco seemed like a dream at first. But living the highlife alongside long work hours meant I still was burning the candle at both ends, surviving off a lot of coffee and pushing myself to the limit both physically and emotionally (typical A-type personality!) I was constantly under the weather but I took no notice of the warning signs my body was giving. It was only when one day I noticed a large lump protruding from my stomach that I got the wakeup call I needed.
It turns out I had an 11 inch tumour growing inside me (the size of a large grapefruit). It was benign (thank goodness) but it was a total wake up call to re-assess my non-stop lifestyle, especially after being told by the consultant that I would be unlikely to have children due to the tumour. My frustration with western medicine began with the fact none of the medics were interested in what caused the tumour but merely using strong drugs to treat the symptoms with serious side effects. Of course, being a lawyer (and a bit of a geek at heart) I did extensive research devouring every health book available and trying every superfood and ‘promise-you-the-world’ diet out there to start taking responsibility for my own health. Some worked. Some didn’t. In the long run, I managed to heal myself (and happily gave birth to my daughter last year) but, looking back, it would have made life much easier if I’d had some guidance at the time to navigate the often confusing world of “alternative health”. Which is what inspired me to take the next step to help women avoid the same mistakes I had made and support them to learn ways to cope with stress and not let it impact their health.
So, I did a bit of an “Eat. Pray. Love.” and headed off to Bali to become a yoga instructor and a few years later I qualified as a nutritional therapist. I incorporated my nutritional therapy with my yoga and mindfulness training to help women working in stressful environments struggling with fertility. The results with clients were amazing – just by making relatively simple changes to their lifestyle and diet.
The next step was to expand to transformative retreats and group programmes. I loved how bringing women together in a positive environment led to them supporting and lifting each other up as opposed to the competitiveness and negative comparisons so often felt between women. I led my first retreat in 2014 bringing in experts to run practical workshops alongside the yoga and mindfulness sessions. Although I was nervous about this new venture I was confident that it is what women in the corporate world needed. I needn’t have worried as the retreat sold out in its first week! I haven’t looked back since and recently ventured into mum and baby retreats having seen another large gap in the market when I became a mum myself.
I love the fact that through LOD I can continue putting all my legal training to good use working on interesting projects and satisfy my inner legal geek. They have been so supportive throughout and that they support and encourage “life outside law”. I was really impressed with their thorough interview process and loved their ethos. It has given me the ability to keep my legal brain satisfied whilst also following my passion.