Firstly, I really wanted to say a HUGE thank you to all of you guys who follow the JSHealth journey and give us the most incredible feedback. I read all of your social media comments and emails – it is you who keeps me motivated to keep doing what we’re doing at JSHealth. It is you guys who inspire me, truly. Watching you all feel more excited about living a healthier life – that’s what JSHealth is all about.
I couldn’t do any of this without you. Thank you.
For those of you who have been on my journey since the beginning, you know that the blog happened very accidentally and organically. I was simply expressing my thoughts and feelings in an amateur blog for a few months – documenting my transition from a fad dieter to wholefood eater and uploading some of the wholefoods recipes that I was discovering along the way to support my personal journey (mostly because my friends would ask for recipes!).
And I had REALLY difficult time prior to the blog. I really wasn’t living a very wholesome life. I was sad, angry and lost. It hasn’t been an easy journey. It has been worthwhile though.
There was NO business intention. There was NO dream to create a blog into something bigger than just a blog. There was NO expectation for anyone to care about what I had to say. In fact, I have never had an interest in business. I still find it very hard to see JSHealth from a business perspective, because I genuinely wake up and focus on how I can help my community with their health – and when I think about the business side, it takes away from what I truly care about.
The intention for the blog has been pure all along. My heartfelt intention from the start until now is to focus on how can I help people live a more balanced and wholesome life. Honestly.
All I wanted to be was a good nutritionist in private practice since I was 14 years old. That’s it.
But JSHealth has become a full blown, full-time business. It’s a full time job. I had to close down my nutritional practice because there weren’t enough hours in a day to fully commit to a client and keep JSHealth, the brand, going.
And I am nothing but grateful. I wake up every day and thank whoever is up there for this job – because this is what I was meant to do. I was meant to be in the world to help people live a healthier life. I wake up everyday and know this is my purpose. I know that the reason why I had my own challenging journey with my body image and a toxic relationship with food was to then be able to help young teenagers overcome their own challenges and feel supported by JSHealth.
I wanted to write this because it’s hard to explain to people what JSHealth is and just how full time it’s become.
I thought JSHealth Real Talk should be where I express myself – and so I can include you guys into the realness of my life.
I am human and I feel stress just like anyone. My life is not as picture perfect as it may look on social media – social media captures the best of people’s lives – it’s a highlight reel. And to tell you the truth, I have been under enormous stress lately. I know I am incredibly blessed – to truly love what I do. I feel so lucky and am so grateful for my work. But it’s not all so easy – it’s bloody hard work.
I am also feeling the PRESSURE to keep JSHealth ahead of the game. I have a big dream for the brand (because I can see it’s potential). It’s a competitive industry and so I feel the need to keep our content fresh and unique. It matters to me that our content actually helps and inspires the community. I am constantly wracking my brain with ways to help people to live a healthier life with ease – and so the pressure that comes with that can be exhausting.
So, I thought it is time to give a little glimpse into the JSHealth world and share what we do everyday. In fact, we have just decided to create a series on the blog, ‘This Week at JSHealth’, so you guys can come and see what we do every day. It’s especially there for anyone interested in building a business in the health industry. I love supporting anyone who wants to have a career in this industry – the more the merrier.
But it seems people don’t quite understand the amount of work that goes on behind the scenes…
People are like, “I don’t get it – you just have a blog – what keeps you so busy?” I have also heard people say through the grapevine, “What is she so stressed about? She lives the dream – she just makes salads all day.”
It’s hard to hear that, because the JSHealth team and I have never, ever worked harder. We are up late at night trying to make JSHealth the best it can be.
Even a few years ago, it wouldn’t have been possible to build a brand from a social media platform, because this kind of technology (or its widespread use) didn’t exist yet. Perhaps because it’s quite a modern-day career-path, it’s hard to imagine what goes on behind the scenes. But I’d love to share this with you, so here is a glimpse of what JSHealth is involved in on a weekly basis:
- We create 3-4 NEW recipes each week. This takes up a huge amount of time – Over the weekend I write down new recipes I want to create, and from the beginning of the week we start recipe-testing, tweaking here and there and then food-styling, photographing the finished product and ensuring each recipe is written up correctly.
- Mondays are dedicated to writing the blog posts (whether that’s nutritional tips, travel guides or heartfelt blogs), which are then edited and uploaded; so that there’s new content going live each day.
- JSHealth now contributes to major online and print media (including Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, My Body&Soul, MindBodyGreen). We also create new recipes and content for them each week, which we take just as seriously as content for the JSHealth blog. Everything has to be original for external media, and of a very high standard – this takes 1-2 days of writing on my behalf, and is then edited and collated to meet each publication’s deadlines.
- I speak at about 2 events each week (which are either JSHeath-coordinated events, or as a guest speaker). This requires prepping a speech or talk and dedicating time to coordinating the event for the guests.
- We film about 4 recipe videos a week – each take about an hour to film, followed by more time to edit and perfect (which has to be done in different sizes and lengths for each social media channel).
- We have been creating a vitamin range for months now – something that’s still in the works. We do this by working alongside a biochemist, who is helping me formulate very high standard nutritional products. This is a huge commitment and means back and forth emails and meetings so we get the products right.
- We have also been creating a cereal and snack bar range for the last 6 months, which we’re launching early next year – it’s taken blood, sweat and tears to be able to perfect and test the perfect nutritional food range. And let me tell you, it tastes amazing.
- Book 1 was released last year and my 2ndbook is now complete. I write the books 100% on my own and no team members help on this one. It is hard to explain to people how long it takes to write a book – it takes one year. It’s an enormous commitment creating a book that will be able to ACTUALLY help people. Testing every recipe, coming up with unique and powerful content – it’s not easy. No book is successful without you dedicating your life to it. That’s just what it entails. I meet with my publishers often to go through the details of the book.
- I have just finished completing my first online program, which in itself took about 4 months to write. I have written an 8-Week plan to help everyone to liver a healthier life – and in particular to help young teenagers build a healthier relationship with food. Once the content was written, we translated it into video footage, which involved vlog-style and cooking segments. Now we’re in the process of liaising with a graphic designer, to get the right look and feel, and a web-developer to put it all together and make sure the technical aspect runs smoothly.
- We are also focusing on creating a series of JSHealth events and retreats. The start of these are in Sydney, and range from JSHealth Breakfasts (with yoga, meditations and guest speakers) to JSHealth Q&A’s in the evenings, to our first ever JSHealth retreat (to be held in Bali in March, 2017). We consider everything so carefully so that anyone who comes to an event has the best experience they possibly can – this comes down to finding the right locations, organising (healthy!) catering, running the marketing and promotion, doing the costings so it’s accessible for everyone, pitching to our favourite brands for collaborations and goodie bags and more.
- We are also collaborating with the most incredible companies, which can be anything from content creation, new recipes, attending events, doing photoshoots or media interviews – the possibilities are endless. They’re amazing brand partners and we are always careful about making sure we create and sustain long-term relationships. We only work with brands we genuinely believe in and use personally, so it’s very organic. I always ensure the brand is something I would stand by personally and as a nutritionist. It’s a huge commitment and ensuring the work we do with these brands is always of a high standard is something we take very seriously.
- I review various health spas/destinations to bring you the best content and inspiration for your healthy travel. Reviews on travel destinations are perhaps not as glam as they look. It comes with a work responsibility – I need to write up a very well-written review, take good images that capture each aspect of the experience and conduct interviews with the team on site to feature on the blog. I also then write reviews on behalf of various online publications.
I work normal hours – 9-6pm about 6x/days a week. But lately, I even find myself working on weekends. But, of course, as it is my own business, I do have some freedom to determine my own hours sometimes – I know how lucky I am for that.
We LOVE all of the above – but I am not going to lie and tell you it’s not stressful. I am doing my best to live by what I preach and I am committed to finding balance between my personal life and my business (a challenge when they do cross over quite a bit). We just know it’s worth it because at the end of the day, our goal is to help as many people as we can to live a healthier life – and that’s all that really matters in the end.
And I could NEVER do it all without my amazing team – Olivia/Sarah/Isabella and Dean – because you can see just how much goes on.
I have always believed that success doesn’t come without hard work, blood, sweat and tears. It hasn’t been easy. But I love what I do.
And I cannot thank you enough for supporting us.