Welcome to the first in a series of ten-question style interviews with SF healing arts practitioners and other makers of magic here in the city. The idea is to expose you to people, places and services that can assist you in creating your best life. At The Blue Buddha, we offer massage therapy & bodywork, skin care and acupuncture but as any great practitioner knows it’s important to have a referral network to best serve clients and patients. Not every approach to health and wellness works for everyone. We are ever evolving creatures with various needs and changing states of physical, emotional and spiritual well-being. My interviewees are chosen based on my own curiosities, my desire to educate clients and my hope to create a strong sense of community around The Blue Buddha. So without further adieu it is my pleasure to introduce you to the lovely, talented and funny Sara Seinberg-Holistic Health Coach extraordinaire (drum roll please). -Erik Everts, Founder, The Blue Buddha
Describe your typical first session with a client. Before I meet with clients, I send them a pretty extensive Discovery form where they tell me, and remind themselves, about their food history, health history and their goals for coaching. The first session I begin asking questions regarding the survey that help the client set a specific agenda for their own work. We begin to look at and address not just their obvious and pressing concerns, but we also identify their strengths that will support growth in other areas as well.
Your work inspires you because it is a deeply rewarding process to bear witness to someone’s growth. The amount of trust and willingness people bring to the table blows my mind. Each and every day, I watch the people face fears, build new patterns and move away from things that have had them ensnared for years. Can’t help but be inspired by that.
In addition to things like meal planning, emotional eating, sugar addiction, etc., you also work with clients on creativity and authenticity. Tell us more about this aspect of your work. Oftentimes people are caught up in old stories about themselves. About who they are and what the world thinks of them. The authenticity work is about locating those stories and dropping them. It’s about being honest and vulnerable about who you are today, and showing up for that. The creative work frees these opportunities up. EVERYONE is creative. I use creativity as a tool, but also as a destination in the work so people can use it and return to it for solace as well. The cycle is a chain of gifts: The more vulnerable and authentic you practice being, to more access you have to your creative self. The more you access your creative self, the more willing you become to be again more vulnerable and then more authentic.
The healthy living book that everyone needs to read in the next few months is…In the kitchen I’d say, and will probably always say, The Art of Simple Food by Alice Waters. It shows people not just how to use real seasonal food, but also build a pantry, practice foundational recipes and free up the home cook for experimentation and flights of fancy with quality ingredients. Clean Food by Terry Walters is a great cookbook for people who really want to work without common irritants or for cooks with food sensitivities. Out of the kitchen I’d say Anger by Thicht Nhat Hanh is a beautiful and wise book to read over and over. I also love Breaking Free from Emotional Eating by Geneen Roth.
What nugget of information made the most impact on you during your training with the Institute of Integrative Nutrition? 90% of your serotonin is manufactured in your gut, not your brain. So eating healthy and keeping your gut flora up to snuff really does effect our happiness in a baseline scientific way.
This spring you launched your first cleanse with another on the way for the summer. There are many schools of thought on cleanses, what’s your take and why is it a good thing? The cleanse I designed and lead is a whole foods cleanse with no mandatory supplements or hoo ha colon blow situations. It’s a gentle cleanse that works through resetting new eating patterns and eliminating toxins for a set amount of time. I love a cleanse. I think resetting the body in a kind way with plenty of food and hydration is a great way to keep our bodies in the rhythm of our natural surroundings. I will do one each season for a quarterly reset, each one based on a different theme. The Spring Fling Cleanse was based in Creativity. The Summer Cleanse will be about setting Intentions.
Holistic health coaching is not about DIETS. For Pete’s Sake.
If you could leave one personal quote (or your favorite from someone else) with all your clients that they went into the world and shared with everyone they met, what would it be? “Let everything happen to you, Beauty and terror. No feeling is final. Just keep going.” -Rainer Maria Rilke
What’s your current or all time favorite healthy recipe that someone can incorporate into a dinner? Sautee kale in olive oil, juice of one fresh lemon, two cloves of crushed garlic, red pepper flakes and a splash of tamari. If you’re game for it, throw a slow roasted farm fresh egg on top. I’m NEVER MAD AT A HEAD OF KALE!