Getting Started with Health Coaching with Shelley Myers

February 16, 2019

We’re excited to introduce you to Shelley Myers, our Business Success Coach, and Functional Medicine & Integrative Nutrition Health Coach. Shelley has been working in the Health and Wellness industry for 20+ years and has some amazing experience and knowledge to share on how to build a successful nutrition practice from the ground up.

Hi Shelley! Thanks so much for being open to sharing your own journey in the Health & Wellness industry with our community. Do you mind starting off by telling us a little bit about yourself?

Of course! In addition to being the Business Success Coach at Practice Better, I also practice Functional Medicine & Integrative Nutrition Health Coaching. I am a graduate of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN), Functional Medicine Coaching Academy (FMCA), Heart Math Institute and several other certification programs. I have been in the health and wellness field for all of my career and spent time as a cardiac nurse and also in the fields of corporate wellness and healthcare IT.

In my health coaching practice, I work with clients over time to help them understand that they are in charge of their health and are the ultimate decision makers for their health and lifestyle choices. I help empower them to talk with their health and medical providers, be curious, ask questions, be open to alternatives, and of course, how to measure and track their health metrics.

One of my main goals is to help my clients grow and evolve in their knowledge and understanding of what true health and wellbeing really are and help to motivate and empower my clients to live their healthiest life. Going back to my coaching tools such as active listening, motivational interviewing, leveraging character strengths, and positive psychology strategies have really been a cornerstone to my success as a Health Coach and my clients’ success in their health journey.

Having been a Health Coach since 2011, I’ve focused on several different areas: stress reduction and management, corporate wellness programs, and working with individuals struggling with autoimmune conditions. Over the years I have collaborated with numerous functional and integrative nutritionists and physicians, including Sue Bentsen, Kendra Whitmire, Dr. Erica Leazenby. Now, I primarily see clients virtually via tele-health through the Practice Better platform.

Shelley Myers, Business Success Coach and Functional Medicine & Integrative Nutrition Health Coach

What was it that attracted you to the fields of health, wellness, and nutrition?

I have been interested in health and wellness for most of my life. I was very active growing up and was always interested in fitness and exercise. I even had a small gym in my basement as a kid and spent much time down there working out. I decided to major in exercise science as an undergraduate and spent a number of years teaching fitness classes and being a personal training at a number of gyms.

I became more and more interested in nutrition as I started experiencing my own health challenges about 10 years ago and was determined to find a better way than just taking medications which, I felt, was just a band-aid. I was determined to identify and address the root cause of my issues and help to solve them for good. A whole, unprocessed, nutrient-dense, phyto-diverse diet was so important to my healing. Although healthy nutrition is a critical piece to good health, I realized there were many other components such as mindfulness, stress management, quality sleep, and time outdoors in nature that needed to be considered.

Do you have any tips for practitioners who are just starting out?

  1. Three words that I tried to focus on were: Simplify, Focus, and Master. Don’ take on too much, too quickly. Prioritize and then focus on only 2–3 topics (i.e. marketing, legal, technology, etc..) at a time. Choosing topics that you really enjoy and are already good at will make mastering those areas easier and more enjoyable.
  2. I always recommend that new coaches (and anyone feeling stuck) consider working with your own coach or mentor who can give you feedback and perspective from an outsider’s viewpoint. Be open to support and advice from those who are where you’re looking to get to.
  3. For me, I love tools and technology and recommend that practitioners and coaches embrace the technological tools meant to make their work easier. I spent a number of years in the health IT space (EHRs, telehealth, patient engagement platforms) and also earned my master’s degree in Medical Informatics. I love figuring out how to leverage technology to enable my work to be more efficient and also effective in helping my clients reach their health goals and achieve better outcomes. This is what attracted me to Practice Better and I have used and loved it now for almost 2 years. Now, I love that I get to help other practitioners use technology to help them run and scale their businesses.
  4. Invest in other people help you in the areas that are not in your wheelhouse. For me, investing in legal help and advice was a big one and saved me a lot of time researching and figuring things out for myself. Also, investing in a very talented graphic designer was another great investment for me and my business. It’s ok not to do everything yourself.

What tools do you love? And how do they help you in your practice?

In addition to Practice Better for running my practice and keeping my clients on track, I absolutely love all things Google. G-suite — Google Docs, spreadsheets, email, calendar, forms. Because I have worked with people and teams remotely for many years, I love the real-time collaboration aspect of Google Docs. It saves so much time since I don’t need to be emailing documents, waiting to get them back to see revisions and send them off to the next person to edit. It has been a game changer for me over the last 10 years.

I also use and love Asana for project management and coordination and Trello for organizing information, project ideas, and also some project coordination. Loom is another tool that I love for doing quick and easy recordings of my screen if I want to send someone an instructional video. I’ve also used Loom to create videos for my clients to do a quick review of a resource that I’m sending them.

This month we’ve really been focusing on self-care. What do you do to make sure that you have time for yourself? And how have you helped your clients practice self-care?

I enjoy spending time with friends and family, being outside in nature (with my two dogs) in parks or hiking and doing yoga when I’m able to get to a class. Cooking is also something that I find very relaxing and I can use my creative side when making colorful, healthy meals.

For my clients, we try to build this into their week and actually schedule the “self-care” time on their calendar. I have them think about what obstacles may come up that could prevent them from actually doing the self-care activities, and think through, ahead of time, how they will handle and overcome those obstacles so they have a plan.

I also help them to deal with the “guilt” that often accompanies practicing self-care as many people feel guilty if they’re doing things for themselves (i.e. relaxing, getting a massage, going to a yoga class) and not always focusing on everyone else in their lives. We talk through that and they ultimately realize that the better they take care of themselves and the better they feel, the more energy and focus they will have for others and the more productive and creative they can be in other areas of their lives. It’s really a win-win for everyone when you practice self-care.

Thank you, Shelley, we really appreciate you sharing your journey with the Practice Better community!

Practice Better is the complete practice management platform for nutritionists, dietitians, and wellness professionals. Streamline your practice and begin your 14-day free trial today.

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