Written by A Wild Dove | Photographed by Caitlin Mitchell
We all know what it feels like to be unhappy, to not be living our best lives. Melissa Wood was familiar with that feeling 24/7. She struggled with anxiety, an eating disorder and cycstic acne and felt like she wasn’t living her truth. But unlike so many who go through life that way, Melissa found the strength to do something about it. She got real with herself and realized that she ultimately wanted to help others as she grew too. The result? Melissa Wood Health, a holistic wellness coaching program she created to bestow to the world the knowledge that helped her heal. “I just wanted to share my journey in hopes to help people dealing with the same struggles,” Melissa said. And we are so thankful she did. Here, we chat with this rockstar mama and wellness coach on her journey, life lessons and what brings her joy.
1. We are such a fan of everything you are doing in the health and wellness space. Was there one specific trigger moment you can recall in realizing your path?
I was on this beautiful trip and I felt empty. I wasn’t happy and it hit me that I wasn’t doing things in my life that fulfilled me. I spent the next weekend completely turned off: from my social life, phone calls and technology. I tuned in to myself. I made a list of everything that made me feel alive. At the end of the weekend, I read the list and saw things like, “Going rollerblading, going to yoga, eating a salad, drinking a green juice.” The next morning I enrolled at The Institute for Integrated Nutrition course to become a health coach.
2. Amazing. Love that. How has becoming a mama impacted your views on health, fitness and food?
Becoming a mom has helped me let go of trying to control everything. It’s allowed me to realize this flow in my life that I didn’t have before. I’m more easy going now. If Benjamin wants a bite of his dads eggs, he can have a bite of his dad’s eggs. Clearly, I’m very aware of everything I put in my body, but if Benjamin wants a cupcake at a party he can have it. I want him to have childhood experiences. I will always give him a good foundation, but I want him to experience things and not feel the need to binge the second he gets to his friends house when he's older.
3. How do you extend your philosophies on self care to your family and son? How does it translate?
I live and breathe them. I truly try to lead by example and I go out of my way to make sure that if I’m doing something like making a green juice, there is enough for everyone. Then I force my husband to drink it. Just kidding... kind of.
4. Ha. Totally. So what would be your advice to mamas or women struggling to find their path towards becoming the best versions of themselves?
Most importantly, be kind to yourself. It’s challenging to just suddenly become the best version of yourself. It takes a lot of mindfulness, patience and commitment. Find your own way. My way may seem really rigid and too far left for some people. You have to see what works for you. Really show up for yourself every day. Even doing one thing that makes you happy that can keep you moving in a positive mindset throughout the day.
5. Yes! So you must be busy helping others attain balance and mindfulness. How do you define balance and how do you maintain it?
Balance to me is prioritizing what you really want in your life and how you want to feel. I prioritize things because I know how it feels to really feel shitty and upset with yourself. I maintain my lifestyle because I really feel my best now and it has become effortless.
6. What's your therapy?
7. And what are the tools you use to help you live your best life?
The three pillars that my entire business is based off - meditation, mindful eating and movement. I create the space to apply these things to my life daily. That's why I started sharing my workouts on my Fitner app channel.
8. What's the one thing you can't live without?
Love. Being loved and giving love.
9. Lastly, what makes you fly?
My daily practice. The ability to show up for myself every day.