Guest Post: Confessions of a Nutritionist

By Sarah Armstrong

Being a holistic nutritionist means I'm supposed to be a great cook and recipe builder, right? 

Well, I have a confession to make: I've had a long-standing self-limiting belief that cooking is stressful, hard, and that I'm no good at it.  

In the wise words of Henry Ford: "Whether you think you can, or you think you can't, you're right."  

Many of us have predisposed beliefs about our abilities and resist pushing through barriers because we've decided we aren't capable of doing something, before we've even tried it.  And, when we believe in ourselves and go so far as visualizing ourselves succeeding at that thing we think we can't do, all of a sudden, we're doing it. #fakeitilyoumakeit

This year, I am committing to breaking through those limiting thoughts, and shifting the way I think about my ability to prepare and create food.  

Since I know I'm not alone in my thinking and that there are many of us out there who think we "can't cook", here are some tips that have really helped me:

1. Find Some Inspiration.  

Whether it's an Instagram account or a food blogger, there are a ton of incredibly talented people out there who are doing amazing things with food and sharing it.

There is, quite literally, inspiration around every (social media) corner. If you have food allergies or sensitivities, this is one of the most exciting times to get really creative with your diet because there are simply way more options than ever before.  Be curious about new ingredients and techniques.

2. Be Organized

I'm finding a ton of joy in prepping meals on Sundays.  Plan your meals ahead, grocery shop, and prepare what you can on Sunday.  If you have stuff ready to go during the week, it's so much easier to put your meals together. This is especially helpful for those of us with limited time during the week.

3. Shiny Bright Objects

Find a beautiful cookbook that you really connect with, and start cooking your way through it. I've been Julie and Julia'ing my way through Angela Liddon's, "Oh She Glows" cookbooks over the last few weeks.  I get a ton of joy from sitting down with my cup of coffee on Sunday morning and flipping through the glossy pages and looking at the beautiful photographs.  See point #1 above: #getinspired.

4. Create an Enjoyable Environment

Here's what I know: I work best in a clean kitchen! Before you dive into a recipe, start by organizing your space. Pull out your ingredients, measure your spices, use little bowls and cups.  Sure, it's extra dishes, but it keeps you organized and in the flow. Plus, you feel like a pro. #miseenplace  

5. Credit Yourself

If you've made changes to a recipe that turned out pretty amazing, write them down! As you start to cook more and more, you'll notice your own style emerge and that there are common ingredients you like to put together. This is you paying attention to what your body needs and likes. Manifest that inner wellness guru and chef!

6. Believe in You

Henry Ford once said "Whether you think you can or you think you can't, you're right." Pay attention to what you're telling yourself and let those doubts go. Fake it 'til you make it!

7. Have Fun!

Seriously. You're preparing delicious food for yourself and/or your loved ones! if you catch yourself getting stressed, come back to your intention. Remember your perspective, and why you're doing it in the first place.  I also love to light a candle, put on my favourite apron, and a great podcast or playlist.  Do what you need to do to keep yourself enjoying the moment.


Sarah is passionate about inspiring others to live a healthful life. Her curiosity and desire to heal her own personal connections with food and exercise led her to the nutrition program at the Institute of Holistic Nutrition, where she graduated as valedictorian with first class honours.  Sarah offers a holistic approach to wellness with the intention of empowering you to make choices that promote physical, mental and spiritual health, specific to your goals and dreams.  A big believer in the mind-body connection, her coaching combines nutrition, functional movement, and self-awareness techniques.   

Check out her website and follow her #manifestMonday on Facebook.