Neenet from Pencil Yourself In

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I’m a corporate girl by day, and holistic health coach by night. I was always “health conscious” growing up – and by that, I mean, I drank diet coke instead of regular coke, and ate salads for every. Single. Meal. This is certainly not the definition of health conscious, especially now that I know how things work in the body. Despite all of this, I was never “skinny” and hated my body. Fast forward to years later, when I joined the corporate world and dedicated my soul to my high-stress job, I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s – an autoimmune thyroid disease. When my first doctor let me know there is nothing I can do besides take a pill daily, I listened. I still felt terrible, mostly in the digestion category, and I know now that it’s because I didn’t adjust my diet or lifestyle. Once my issues kept getting worse – hello hormonal acne and daily naps – I discovered a functional medicine doctor, and that’s when things started to shift. Three years later, I’m still working on healing my body – it’s a lifelong journey, but I’m so glad to be in charge of MY body! My favorite part about all of this is sharing it with all my new friends on my Instagram. I know we don’t all have all the time in the world – you’re busy, I get it – so what I strive to share are EASY recipes and tips, so that I can impact more people to make better decisions. 


I used to be a HUGE gamer when I was younger. I’m talking 8+ hours in front of the TV during summer break, only getting up to pee. This was during elementary and middle school. I still love the occasional game or two but, again, balance is key! 


I started as strict Paleo, took a shot at Keto, finished two rounds of Whole 30…now, I kind of adopt what I’ve learned from each! My main philosophy is sticking to REAL foods – I try to limit what comes in a package, and attempt to make most of my meals. This, of course, isn’t realistic for someone in the corporate world, so that’s my main adjustment. I make better decisions when I eat out, sticking to mostly veggies and leafy greens, and eat gluten free pizza when I crave it. Surprisingly, my occasional craving is really occasional – it doesn’t turn into a daily craving. While I stick to the main components of Paleo, I do love me some rice (brown or white!), oats, and the occasional cheese. And alcohol? Some folks go out for happy hour every day after work…I join once a month or so, and do indulge in a drink or two. Not to sound cliché or like DJ Khaled, but BALANCE is key.


It’s very hard to decide between a pesto pizza and sweet potato fries. I also used to have a huge sweet tooth, and still like the occasional Paleo-friendly dessert, but my final answer is PIZZA!


Small changes each day is what will lead to huge changes in the long run. It’s the daily habits that need to be addressed if we are unhappy with something in our life. Changing these habits will change your life. I used to have the “all or nothing” mindset & this never got me to where I wanted to be.  It wasn’t until I made small changes each day & kept practicing them that led me to completely changing the way I live.  I feel so content & happy now that I would never go back to my old ways.


Instagram: @pencilyourselfi




Lauren Brown