How To Bring Your Well-being to Work
I first met Carrie Petrie at Goop in Health in NYC. She was welcoming, smiley and happy to be there just as much as I was and I could tell straight off the bat that we had a great connection. We had a great time chatting, joined some talks together and it helped made the event even more fun. It was not til later that I found out that Carrie not only had an amazing girl boss career at a law firm in New York City- but that she had managed to bring her well-being rituals into her own work, but also implemented it for others.
The reason that this sparked my intrigue to want to introduce her to you here is that she has managed to bring her well-being rituals to work. Not only that, but she set up an entire well-being program at her firm so that everyone can gain from implementing well-being practices at work. I find that so courageous and it perfectly aligns with my own beliefs. We tend to look too far ahead when really we should share our dreams where we are now. Sharing your knowledge with your own tribe is so much more influential and more important than trying to influence complete strangers. It is like the expression “It starts at home”. Don’t get me wrong , every person you can touch is a valuable person. However is it really necessary to put in the energy now, or to start where you are and grow it organically from there?
It is a current topic for me too since I’m now living back in Paris which I called home before i became a mum. Close to my family and back with old friends too. It is wonderful, strange and I am taking in every chance to share my last 15 years worth of life knowledge in Japan with my tribe here. I realize that we are are all individuals which is why I believe every story counts including my story. Your story can inspire too!
Carrie was kind enough to take the time to open the doors to her life, her beliefs and her techniques on how she brought her rituals to her tribe at work. A lawyer, a health coach and a game changer to her colleagues, she incorporates the nature of a true game changer.
Tell me, what is it exactly that drives you to do all this?
There is nothing I love more than talking to people about their health and wellbeing! I love listening to people’s stories and struggles, holding space for them to open up and then helping them brainstorm about how to change their lives to take better care of themselves. I also believe that people who take great care of their whole health - physical, mental and emotional - feel better, are happier, think more clearly and are able to show up in the world with more patience and kindness. So I like to hope that the individuals I help will positively impact their own families and communities in turn.
What is the aim you want to achieve through your blog?
My goal with the blog, CARRIE PETRI, is to provide tangible tips and strategies that busy people can use to build simple wellness practices into their everyday lives. The corporate lifestyle can be challenging and often “getting healthy” becomes just another item on a to-do list that creates more stress. My goal is to make it achievable for busy people to take care of themselves without missing a beat at home or the office.
Nutrition being a key foundation of your sharing. What does your typical diet look like on a work day?
It varies based on the week. Recently I’ve been experimenting with intermittent fasting by drinking a vegan version of bulletproof coffee in the morning (using cacao butter instead of ghee) and then not eating lunch until 1 or 2pm. 90% of the time, lunch is a giant salad with a big pile of greens, other veggies in different colors, some nuts and seeds, non-dairy cheese and some kind of good protein like a hard-boiled egg or baked tofu. I’ll usually have a snack before dinner, like pistachios and a glass of wine. Sometimes I like to cook dinner during the week but if I know in advance it’s going to be a crazy one, I’ll order Sakara delivery. Their meals are all organic, vegan, and delicious so it makes things really easy.
At your work place you also play a leading role in making work life a healthier environment for all. Can you tell us a little bit about this?
I’m a lawyer at a bank and run my health coaching practice outside of that, but I’ve also been wearing both hats at work for the last year. I started a wellness program at the bank to offer wellness activities and support for employees.
What was the hardest part in achieving this? What would be your recommendations be on how to implement such a program in other offices?
The hardest part was finding the right people to support the idea and the right avenue for launching the program. It took me almost two years of getting the idea in front of different people within the organization before I finally found those who understood the value and supported developing it. My recommendation would be to keep knocking on doors and setting up meetings until you find people within your organization who will support you and who have the leverage to help you move it forward. Also, I really focused on all of the ways that we could create a program for no cost by utilizing internal resources and getting creative. I spent the first part of the year developing those ideas and when they were successful, I was able get funding for further programming.
How do you want to develop it further? What’s your vision?
My goal for the second half of the year is to internally market and grow participation in the programs we’ve already created. We started yoga and meditation classes, taught for free by employees of the bank who are certified instructors in their spare time. I’ve run two 30-day health coaching programs, and I’d like to build that community of participants who are actively working to live a healthier lifestyle at work. We have teams participating in fitness events, healthier options installed in the vending machines and month-long steps challenge coming up, so my goal is to make more people aware of what we're doing so that the programs can continue to grow and gain momentum.
Being such a busy workforce, how do you handle work-life balance?
I’m still figuring it out! At the end of last year, I got burned out from trying to work on too many things at once and saw the consequences in my health, my work and my relationships. So I’ve learned the true value in building boundaries around work and maintaining free time without guilt. I also think adding things into your day purely for their joy/relaxation value is key -- a glass of wine, a hot bath, turning off your phone and reading a book. All good for the soul.
Can you give us any recommended spots in NYC we should check out for self-care moments?
If you’re up for a good sweat, you can’t beat class at Tracy Anderson’s Tribeca studio. I love “tenoverten” for mani/pedis. “Mulberry & Vine” is good spot to grab a healthy lunch on the go, and “Terra” is one of my favorite spots to have a bite and relax with a glass of wine. And “Battery Park City” is just a beautiful part of NYC. You can’t beat walking along the water there when the weather is nice. Sit on a bench under the trees, watch the boats go by on the Hudson river and just breathe.