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The Transformative Power of Lifestyle Medicine with Donna Meyer

In the latest episode of Plant Based on Fire, Bryan sits down with Donna Meyer, founder of Circle Wellness Coaching. Donna, a Registered Nurse with over 25 years of experience in cardiovascular nursing, has dedicated her career to educating patients about heart disease prevention and lifestyle modification. Now, as a Board Certified Nurse Coach and Lifestyle Medicine Practitioner, she shares her journey and insights into how lifestyle medicine can transform lives.

From Nurse to Coach: A Personal Journey 

Donna Meyer's journey from cardiovascular nursing to founding Circle Wellness Coaching was deeply personal.

"I have a history of being morbidly obese,"

Donna shares, highlighting her struggle with weight and the freedom she found in a whole-food, plant-based diet. This personal transformation inspired her to educate others about the benefits of lifestyle medicine.

"Seeing patients come back sicker and sicker, needing more medications, I realized what we were doing in the hospital wasn't enough,"

she explains.

The Six Pillars of Lifestyle Medicine

Donna emphasizes the six pillars of lifestyle medicine: a whole-food, plant-predominant dietary lifestyle, regular physical activity, restorative sleep, stress management, avoidance of risky substances, and positive social connection. Of these, she finds diet and mindfulness to be the most impactful.

"What we choose to eat and how we manage stress have enormous effects on our health,"

Donna asserts.

Integrating Lifestyle Medicine into Coaching

In her coaching practice, Donna meets clients where they are, offering a nonjudgmental space for them to explore their health goals. She combines her nursing background with her knowledge of lifestyle medicine to provide evidence-based resources.

"I'm always inspiring them to eat more plants,"

she says, encouraging clients to gradually incorporate more plant-based foods into their diets.

Navigating the Challenges of Entrepreneurship

Transitioning to entrepreneurship came with its challenges. Donna shared her initial fears about starting her business but found the process smoother than expected.

"It was easier than I expected. The red tape wasn't that bad,"

she recalls. She emphasizes the importance of being authentic in marketing, offering free coaching sessions to build trust and showcase her services.

Insights You'll Gain From This Episode

  • The personal journey of Donna Meyer from a nurse to a lifestyle medicine coach.

  • The impact of a whole food, plant-based diet on health and wellness.

  • Strategies for integrating lifestyle medicine principles into daily life.

  • The importance of authenticity and continuous learning in entrepreneurship.

  • Practical tips for stress management, improving sleep, and increasing physical activity.

Educative Nuggets from the Interview

  1. On Diet and Mindfulness: "What we choose to put in our bodies three to five times a day has a significant impact. And so does allowing ourselves to slow down and just be."

  2. On Entrepreneurship: "Leaning into that edge of fear and doing things anyway is crucial. It's a continual growth process with a lot of unknowns."

  3. On Authenticity: "Sharing who you are online, both the successes and the challenges, makes you relatable and builds trust."

Donna's passion for lifestyle medicine led her to acquire multiple certifications, including a Plant-Based Nutrition Certificate from eCornell and a Rouxbe Plant-Based Professional Culinary Certification, ensuring her knowledge matched her enthusiasm.

Donna's journey highlights the importance of aligning your business with your values, continuous learning, and authenticity in marketing. Her success in transitioning from nursing to coaching underscores the power of personal transformation and evidence-based practice in building a credible and impactful business.

Tune into the latest episode of Plant Based on Fire to learn more about Donna Meyer's inspiring journey and how lifestyle medicine can transform your health and wellness.

Whether you're a plant-based business owner or someone interested in improving your health, this episode is packed with valuable insights and practical advice.

How to connect with Donna: 

Subscribe to the Plant-Based On Fire podcast on your favorite streaming platform today and stay connected with our ongoing exploration of the complex plant-based business world.


>Episode’s Transcript

Please understand that a transcription service provided the transcript below. It undoubtedly contains errors that invariably take place in voice transcriptions.

Bryan (00:00)

Hello everybody and welcome to Plant Based on Fire where we talk about plant based businesses and their inspiring stories to thrive in our industry. I'm your host Bryan and the best way you can support our podcast is to click that like, subscribe, follow button below wherever you're seeing this and you can let us know what you loved about this episode and maybe even suggest an awesome guest that we should interview next by leaving a comment. We thrive on that. Joining us today is Donna.

My founder of Circle Wellness Coaching. Donna is a registered nurse who focuses on holistic health by enhancing the overall wellness of their clients. So welcome to the show, Donna. Thanks for being here.

Donna Meyer (00:44)

Thank you so so for having me, Bryan. I appreciate it. Glad to be here.

Bryan (00:48)

I know we've gotten to speak a few times before because you're part of the Sage Circle Alliance with me, right? So that's another great little organization where us plant -based vegan people get together. So check that website out. But I want to go back to the beginning a little bit with you if we could. So what sort of motivated you to transition from cardiovascular nursing stuff to founding Circle Wellness Coaching?

Donna Meyer (00:56)


Well, Bryan, it really began with the freedom I found myself in my own shift to whole food plant -based eating. I have a history of being morbidly obese, which may be surprising to some seeing me now, but went through all sorts of roller coaster dieting and just a constant struggle until...

I finally myself found Whole Food Plant -Based and the freedom of that with less calorie counting and what I call macronutrient mathematics that needed to be done. So, so free. And as I was a nurse in the hospital and doing a lot of, in my role, I did a lot of education with clients about heart disease and stents, bypass surgery and recovery and risk factors.

Bryan (01:55)

For sure.

Donna Meyer (02:14)

I kept seeing these patients coming back over and over, eating more and more medications, getting sicker and sicker, seeing a trend over many years of people coming in that were younger and younger and sicker and sicker. And I just kept seeing that and then experiencing my own transformation and realizing what we were doing there in the hospital just wasn't enough.

Bryan (02:45)

I agree completely. I don't think I ever really dieted before I went plant -based, but I certainly love the freedom of just, I sort of just eat whatever I want at this point in time, but I don't really worry about it because I just know as long as I'm staying on that plant -based path, it will just sort of naturally balance out to the right thing that I need. So it's...

Yeah, I mean, thank you for sharing that. I know I lost a ton of weight too when I started my journey. So I encourage everybody to try it for 30 days because you will see the benefits of it for sure. But you have this nursing background, which I, you know, like I love the fact that you have this strong background as a nurse. And so how does that what you see at the hospitals and everything else, how does that influence your approach to this lifestyle, medicine and coaching?

Donna Meyer (03:19)

Thank you.

Yeah, great question. So as a nurse, I've supported and served all sorts of people from all different walks of life and often, especially working in a hospital for so long at some of their most vulnerable times of their lives. And in my coaching, I provide a level of knowing and safety and confidentiality. Nurses definitely understand that. I meet each client where they are with

Bryan (04:03)


Donna Meyer (04:06)

no judgment. I've seen it all you can't surprise me with anything. Every client gets to choose and share however they wish however they wish to open up with with me in the space that's created through coaching on their journey and it's the safe. They're safe in this space.

Bryan (04:11)


Yeah, I agree completely. I have a prior career working with emergency room doctors, a whole bunch, and the stories that they would tell me at lunch. I mean, they did keep the confidence of it, but some of the funny stories, I mean, I do think that the doctors and the nurses out there have the best stories on the planet because you literally, like you said, have seen everything. So there's nothing that's going to scare you away. So just lay it out there with you and you'll say, yeah, I've already seen that before someplace.

Donna Meyer (04:36)


Bryan (04:58)

And here's how we are going to work to overcome that or figure that out. But you've embarked on this business side of it here. So you're doing the coaching now and some other things to build your personal clientele. What have you seen as some of your biggest challenges in establishing your own sort of coaching business?

Donna Meyer (05:22)

Well, I, you know, it's a little scary at first thinking, how do you, how do I start this taking this leap? I actually, when I was in nurse coaching board certification, I had a client that was like, I don't want to stop a pro bono client that I don't want to stop. How do we continue? And that's what inspired me to continue, which is really neat. and so I look, well, I guess I need to dive into this. Let's see, what is this all about? How do I create what I ended up creating as an LLC? And I found that.

Like the, it was easier than I expected. Like all the red tape and stuff was just not that bad. at least in my state. And it was just like, it was just meant to be. and then some other challenges, I guess, in entrepreneurship is recognizing that it's a continual growth process with a lot of unknowns. leaning into that edge of fear and doing things anyway.

Bryan (06:14)


Donna Meyer (06:21)

at some times, you know, I may have some fear about reaching out to others, you know, that may be interested in my services, that like moment of reaching out. And sometimes I'll just tap it. It's like, but I often also find people coming to me. Like they learn about me, they see me in social media. They may hear about me from another client.

Bryan (06:37)


Donna Meyer (06:47)

and they reach out to me with curiosity about my services and I just love that.

Bryan (06:53)

Yeah, it's just it's so awesome when you get a referral. I had one come in the other day where she's like I was at a conference and four different people referred me to you directly, Bryan. Independently, they didn't know about each other, so that's so awesome when you see those kinds of things. I I do the business coaching side of it and so I see that same kind of a thing is just like how can I help you chunk?

Donna Meyer (06:57)

Mm -hmm.

Wow! Yeah!


Bryan (07:20)

the bigger dauntingness of growing a business into some smaller pieces. Like, let's just focus this week on email campaign or what are you going to do for social media, things like that. So yeah, I think you're right in the mix with a bunch of other entrepreneurs on that front. But I want to pivot slightly and talk about that lifestyle medicine and the impact. So what, in your experience, which aspects of lifestyle medicine

Donna Meyer (07:27)

Mm -hmm.


There we go.

Bryan (07:49)

do you think have the most significant impact on what I think is the top 10 killers of people in the United States are chronic diseases, these chronic health conditions. And then how do you kind of, what's the framework you saw to educate clients and talk to the role of lifestyle and prevention reversal of these chronic diseases?

Donna Meyer (08:15)

That's a fantastic question. And thinking about like, they're all the six pillars of lifestyle medicine, which I always share and can touch on with clients, and actually do with every single client, if they're if they're wanting that, to go down that path of health, you know, some people are going down other transitions in their life and working with me. And I think that

Bryan (08:25)

Mm -hmm, please.

Donna Meyer (08:43)

Two things right now out of those pillars that have the most impact are what we choose to eat and then also the mindfulness and stress reduction. And that those two pillars, you know, with nutrition, what we choose to put in our mouth, into our bodies, day in and day out, you know, three to five times a day maybe. What an impact that can make.

and what we've learned about the positive benefits of plant foods. And then there's such an enormous impact on how we allow ourselves to slow down, to rest, and to just be, to truly listen to ourselves so that mindfulness definitely comes into play. And then I see those pillars just overlapping each other all of the time when there's

Bryan (09:32)

Mm -hmm.

Donna Meyer (09:42)

strength or difficulty in any of them that can affect all of the others or many of the others. It's just kind of fascinating to see. And as far as educating people about lifestyle medicine in coaching. In my training, we're not really educating people we're more it's more that we're creating a space where they can feel safe and feel heard. But with my I can put my like lifestyle medicine practitioner hat on.

Bryan (10:06)


Donna Meyer (10:11)

You know, and then I do offer always evidence -based resources as those questions arise. And I, the other thing I nearly almost always share with clients is the documentary Plantwise. It's a 45 minute long documentary, super inspiring and complete, fabulous resource. So highly, highly recommend that. Ooh.

Bryan (10:38)

I have not seen that one. I mean, Forks Over Knives is what did it for me. And now I watch some of the newer ones. I think games, you know, I'm focused on the men's side of it, like bringing more men to the plant -based life. And I think Game Changers is the one that helps men see the values of it on many, many avenues. But I'll have to check out Plantwise. And it's interesting to hear that because like, you know, the chronic disease side of it, I mean,

Donna Meyer (10:41)

Mm -hmm. Yeah.


Bryan (11:07)

people are not coming to you because like, I'm ready to go plant -based. They're coming to you for help with other problems, other concerns and stuff. How do you incorporate that sort of plant -based nutrition into your coaching? Like, are they, I assume you do work with some people that are still on the meat diets and other diets and you're nudging them in the right way, right? Like how do you slip in the vegetables? I mean, everybody, you ask anybody and they'll say, I need more vegetables in my life. I know that, you know that.

Donna Meyer (11:31)



Bryan (11:35)

will do that, but I'm not giving up the bacon on Sundays or whatever it is. I'm just curious how you unpack that.

Donna Meyer (11:43)

Yeah, well, I meet everyone where they are, you know, people are going to make change that they are feeling ready for. And through my coaching, they are able to center more deeply, like there's this space is given for them to really hear themselves, I may reflect back some of their thoughts, allow them to go deeper, we may do some mindfulness together, if they're open to it, some are completely not, and that's okay, too. So I just meet people where they are.

But they really get to choose. I'm always inspiring more plants. I think many people come to me because they see my weight loss story and then that's what they're looking for and they want to do what I did. And so many are coming with the plant focus and sometimes extreme weight loss is what they're looking for. And sometimes very little and sometimes it has nothing to do with like physical health. So it just depends.

and what they need.

Bryan (12:43)

It's yeah, it's it's so true. I always say it's diet and exercise, but I think you really bring that mindfulness thing to the top of my mind because it's it's such a powerful, a powerful thing. I know I I've I'm getting more into that as I go, but it is like that just taking that few extra moments to do a body scan or to like I know I find those mindfulness moments where I get to recharge when I'm either singing.

or going for a run or, you know, like when my mind gets disconnected from all the thousand things that I need to do, that's when I can reflect and just see where it takes me. So I think I encourage that. Maybe I need to have a few sessions with you as well myself to explore that further. But like we're in this post pandemic world here, right? So I'm in Charlotte, you're not in Charlotte kind of thing. And

Donna Meyer (13:27)


Mm -hmm.

Bryan (13:38)

How has the telemedicine angle played into this for you and has it helped you grow your business or talk to us about the telemedicine services?

Donna Meyer (13:47)

Sure, yeah. So all of my services are through Zoom, telemedicine, confidentially. And so I can work with people anywhere in the US. And so I think it makes it a lot easier for my clients and I. People can join me in their session from any quiet and distraction -free environment that they're feeling comfortable and safe where they're located. There's no need to drive or driving in the snow.

You know, that sort of thing for people who live in the snow like me. You know, it's, and it's been wonderful to work from home and just be here and hold this space for people from here. I love it.

Bryan (14:16)


I agree, or the heat and traffic here in Charlotte. I think it's a blazing 86 degrees right now and the traffic I'm sure is backed up on the big expressways. So yeah, I did a bunch of telemedicine in my career in the past and I think that's an invaluable service that more people don't embrace, especially in the coaching space like they should. So.

Donna Meyer (14:30)

Mm -hmm.


Bryan (14:53)

So obviously you've gone through this transformation yourself. You have some great experience as a nurse. Talk to us about credibility and certifications. What are those kinds of things that help further reinforce the fact that you're an expert in this field and the right person to help?

Donna Meyer (15:13)

Sure, well, I, you know, I began, I wanted to know more about what we could really do. And I was still in the hospital and started getting some more certifications, mostly on my own to try to, I'm like, there's more, I'm feeling stuck. There's more we can do for these people. I had found out about the American College of Lifestyle Medicine and had joined as a member and was just fascinated, like, my goodness, went to their first conference and back in 2018, I think.

and was just like, my gosh, I found my people. This is fabulous. So I wanted to learn more. And I was just diving in and webinars and all the things. And first went to went through the Center of Nutrition Studies E Cornell plant based nutrition certificate. I believe I think you said you've done too. Yeah, I thought you said. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. And that I felt like really grew my confidence that there is evidence behind what I was learning online.

Bryan (16:00)

I do, yeah, I've got my certificate as well. That's a great program.

Donna Meyer (16:10)

there's, and more confidence in sharing this evidence with my patients at the time. shortly after that, fall of 2019, I got my lifestyle medicine practitioner certification, through ACLM, which was an enormous undertaking. I felt like it was tons of studying a very, very rigorous, rigorous four hour exam in a room of 500 people that were mostly, mostly physicians.

Bryan (16:30)

Mm -hmm.

Donna Meyer (16:41)

And knowing that getting all the studying and time that went into that and pouring into that meant I wasn't just guessing at the evidence. Like I knew this, you know, and we're always learning. There's so much to learn. You know, it's not that I know everything by all means, but I have the resources and can help people with just about anything in that space.

Bryan (16:51)

Yeah. Yeah.


Donna Meyer (17:03)

And then I went on for a Rouxbe plant -based professional culinary certification. Rouxbe is an online culinary school. And so I wanted to know more about how do I make plants look good, the color, how do I make them taste good, so that when I'm serving them to people, it's inspiring. And even from these people who have the standard American diet palettes yet, you know, making it exciting and enticing for them. So that was a fantastic like six to seven month program.

Bryan (17:08)

I don't know.

Donna Meyer (17:33)

and gave me the skills and confidence in the kitchen, knowing what to suggest and preparing whole plant foods. So I can usually answer questions or find the answer quickly for my clients and others that I help out. And then, so those are really the, like I think of as the client education -based certifications. And then I shifted into, okay, what's next? I want to keep learning, the coaching certifications that I have.

Bryan (17:44)

I love it.

Donna Meyer (17:59)

And one is through the Nurse Coach Collective. It's a board certified nurse coach certification through the American Holistic Nurses Credential Incorporation. Big mouthful there. Yeah, yeah, that was another six month program. And my goodness, was that transformative. Just shifted me into a completely different realm, got me into the mindfulness and listening to myself. And,

Bryan (18:09)

A lot of acronyms. Yeah.

Donna Meyer (18:28)

not just doing surface level changes, but like deeper changes. and, and kind of sprung ended up springing me off to, I'm going to go off on my own now, you know, with that pro bono client wanting to go further. so that was fantastic. And then, then I recently did a holding space practitioner certification, which deepened things even further, which is through the trans center for transformational coaching. I keep wanting to learn. I want to keep learning and sharing.

Bryan (18:32)

Mm -hmm.

Donna Meyer (18:58)

there's so much going that goes into all of this about that creating the space and the container for my clients to find the answers within themselves. To really slow down, listen to themselves and sometimes be heard in a way that they've never experienced before. yeah. Yeah. there's like a slowing down and a listening and a self discovery.

Bryan (19:19)

I agree completely, yeah.

Donna Meyer (19:29)

or even sometimes an unearthing that often needs to happen to gain more traction for moving forward in any area of life, especially in making these transformative lifestyle changes.

Bryan (19:42)

Yeah, I agree. Well said. You're clearly, you've got multiple backgrounds of expertise here. You've got way more certificates than I have for sure as a demonstrated expert in this space. I think the challenge of growing a business is you tell all your friends and family and you get a few of those people that make some referrals and recommendations. I do have to say most small businesses that I've worked with are referral -based. They are referral -oriented.

And so you've got to work on your referral process in a big way, but that's not to discount sales and marketing side of it. So I'm just curious as you've dipped your toe into the entrepreneurial side of this, what marketing strategies have you found to be proven most effective for your type of business and getting new clients in the door sort of outside of that word of mouth angle for your coaching practice? So give us some tips and tricks there.

Donna Meyer (20:38)

Sure, sure. Well, I think the first and main thing is that I am always centering on being me and sharing who I am online, things that are going super well and things that are not going so well. I'm a real person here, you know, and open and relatable, I think, in that way. I think if we close off so much and try to be perfect and present in a certain way, it's not very relatable.

Bryan (20:53)

Mm -hmm.

Donna Meyer (21:08)

so I, I just have chosen to be me be open and it's so much more centering Bryan than having to try to be two people. so it's been, that's been very good. I also offer free coaching sessions for people to experience, introductory coaching with me. To like see if we're a good fit. It's totally free of charge and no strings attached. and these free sessions helped me gain additional experience in coaching.

Bryan (21:14)

Mm -hmm. Yeah.

Donna Meyer (21:38)

And they also helped me get the word out about my services and what it is that I do. Cause it's difficult and we're talking about it. I'm trying to explain it here, but it's difficult to understand until you experience it. And so that's, that's part of my marketing in a sense as well. and you said, you know, things other than word of mouth, but really nearly all of my marketing is word of mouth. So I'm so appreciative of you having me on this podcast. Cause there'll be a lot of people listening. Much appreciated, Bryan.

Bryan (22:01)


No, I mean, I think we say word of mouth, but I mean, you're you're active on the social media pieces of it, which is really just an extension of that word of mouth in a big way. But, you know, it's there's yeah, there's so many different angles to explore. It's almost overwhelming. You need a full time person just to help you with the marketing sometimes. But that's good. I appreciate those those couple pointers. I think giving a free trial lets you know if.

Donna Meyer (22:09)

Mm -hmm.



Bryan (22:32)

A, do I want to work with this person? But B, it does give you that experience of how to deal with so many different unique situations, but it also lets them get that sense of like, I really like where Donna's taking me on this journey and I want more. So I think that's a very smart play and more businesses should offer that kind of little tip or trick. I'm curious if I can ask you a few questions that dive deep into your experience here, because I have a newborn at home.

Donna Meyer (22:34)

Yeah. Mm -hmm. Yeah.

Bryan (23:01)

And so sleep is not on my radar very much right now. So the stress levels are high. I have a, she's one month as of a couple of days ago. So I'm just curious about sleep and stress management. What techniques do you recommend for sort of managing stress and improving sleep? Which is such another critic. I mean, we talked about diet, nutrition, mindfulness, but like sleep is another really important one, right?

Donna Meyer (23:06)

Yeah, yeah, yeah.



Yeah. gosh, absolutely. I think sleep is just huge in how it impacts how we're being, maybe levels of inflammation, how we, what we end up eating, whether we get out there and get on a walk or a run or whatever it is. Huge impact and so important and so overlooked sometimes. And I'm glad it's coming. I think American Heart Association actually.

Now, how long ago was this? Maybe two years ago now, but they started making it one of their focus or a piece of their focus, which is really great. I forgot the exact terminology. But around sleep, some of the things that I would recommend, should we, should I put that lifestyle medicine practitioner hat on? The things like a quiet and cool dark room. Really, we've heard, you know, limiting that blue light and the phone is...

Bryan (24:13)

Mm -hmm.

Donna Meyer (24:22)

and TV as difficult as that is, really creating the bedroom that's primarily for sleep. And really, okay, TV goes out, you know, it's a choice. It can be tough for some people, but it can make a huge difference. Any other distractions in the bedroom, that sort of thing. And another thing that I found is huge is for sleep is to not eat, especially a large calorie dense.

Bryan (24:35)


Donna Meyer (24:51)

meal, even if it's plant based, late into the evening. Because I think that dramatically affects sleep through the night, assuming someone's sleeping on a, you know, through the night and not on a night shift situation or whatever. Yeah. But makes a humongous difference for sleep. And then to answer your question about managing stress, like really, like I've kind of touched on a little bit here is allowing ourselves that time to truly listen to our inner selves.

to allow that openness, to allow ourselves to pause and to breathe. And one resource that I often recommend is free online or you can pay for a higher level version. There's tons available under the free offerings though. Insight Timer is a fabulous resource that I recommend often.

and have found many, many mindfulness programs or listenings on there and teachers that have just been super impactful for me and for my clients.

Bryan (26:01)

Very cool. I can even tell in the way we're having this conversation that you take that very seriously and have those things. It's something I actually encourage my teams that I've mentored is to be okay with that awkward silence, to let that question linger and don't feel like you have to respond because we all want to keep talking and keep the conversation going. But can I just sit with that moment of silence to just let it linger or it spurs the client to...

Donna Meyer (26:05)

Mm -hmm.

Bryan (26:31)

reveal more information to help you in the negotiation. So there's definitely some secrets to the mindfulness side of it. So I appreciate that. It's funny, my daughter did ask me, Daddy, when can I get a TV in the bedroom? And I said, do I have one in my bedroom? And she goes, no. And I go, so you will never have one in your bedroom, at least as long as you're living at my house. So I agree, we have to wall that off. So those are some great tips. And I'm curious, on the physical,

Donna Meyer (26:38)



you're here. Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Mm -hmm.

Bryan (26:59)

the physical activity side of it. How do some of your recommendations get tailored to helping the clients on their individual levels for the physical activity? I know me again, having a brand new baby, I've not been able to exercise as much as I desire because I'm probably sleeping. So.

Donna Meyer (27:01)

Mm -hmm.

So in my coaching, you know, again, I meet my clients wherever they are and often it's wherever they are in their journeys in any of these pillar areas really. Often it's just beginning to move more, you know, doing something, some sort of movement that you love or trying new things.

new physical activity. It doesn't have to be necessarily exercise. You know, I think of the Jane Fonda thing and all that. Nothing wrong with her at all. But it doesn't have to be formal exercise. Maybe it's just getting outside. Maybe it's doing a little bit more in the garden. Maybe it's walking a little further today than you did yesterday. So along with what their clients are, where they are on their journeys, it's maybe inspiring or just

pushing just a little bit more? What do you think? Could we try this? What do you think about trying just a little bit more? And also, Bryan, I want to go back to that silence thing that you talked about too, because that is huge in coaching, because in coaching, the client has all the answers.

Bryan (28:19)

Mm -hmm.

Yeah, they know the right thing to do. Right. Yeah.

Donna Meyer (28:24)

And providing that silence, yeah, it's like providing that silence just allows them to go deeper and you're not interrupting their thoughts, you know, so that's just a beautiful thing that you have come across that and have incorporated that too.

Bryan (28:40)

Awesome. Well, I know we're going a little bit longer than I wanted to, but I do have a couple more questions that I think, because it's such an intriguing conversation we're having. So if I can keep going. Like the other thing that I think people struggle with that I've seen in just me just guiding friends or family on they're trying to experiment with diets or ways to avoid.

Donna Meyer (28:41)

Thank you.


Bryan (29:06)

chronic diseases or something is the risky substances. It's too much sugar, too much salt, too much alcohol, too, you know what I mean? There's things that we all want as a human, but we have to have in moderation or zero to none kind of a thing. What challenges have you seen with your clients and how do you help them avoid some of these risky substances and supporting them on that journey?

Donna Meyer (29:31)

Sure. Yeah, challenges clients face around, you know, in this avoidance of risky substances pillar is often is related to those social patterns, the expectations, the cultural, like just what you would normally do with your these friends or what you would normally do in this particular situation. And now you're working on shifting that can be a big shift. That's kind of difficult and uncomfortable. So.

As my clients begin to center within and listen and commit to what they really want, like letting go of what others think of their choices, which is not easy either sometimes, they begin to have more and more success in letting go and creating health in these social situations too. Yeah.

Bryan (30:19)

The peer pressure I find for even just the men's side of it, you know what I mean? And you say, I don't eat bacon, and they attack your masculinity almost to a degree that, my gosh, how can you not be a, you know, so that's why it's real men eat plants, you know, to help to counteract that masculinity angle. But I think that ties into like the social connection side of it to a degree, right? Because I,

Donna Meyer (30:35)

Yes, absolutely.

Bryan (30:45)

I don't know the exact quote, but it's like, look at your five closest friends. And that's probably a good representation of who you are to a degree. So like, I think part of coaching is as a business coach is like, who are your advisors? And do you have the right advisors helping you on your journey and helping you push for the next level? But I think in your world, it's the same kind of thing. How do we help shift some of the social connections or, I don't know, describe some of your strategies to encourage clients to follow?

Find better friends or I don't know the right term there.

Donna Meyer (31:18)

So social connection, you know, the probably the last pillar of that we're talking about here is so very important. I see it so very important for brain health, especially learning from other people and connecting with other people and also for just for overall well -being. We learn from each other and we support one another. We're all part of this amazing system, including nature, the universe, the energy going around.

however you view things or choose to look at things. That connection with others and listening to others and being heard and supported is a vital part of truly living along with extending our not only our the length of our life, but our health spans. You know, how long do you want to live? But how do you want to how long do you want to be healthy while you live? You know, and

I encourage clients to improve social connection. It really, again, comes from them. You know, maybe me asking what perhaps next small step do you think you could take? What do you feel ready for? Or it may be, I've been thinking about having this conversation with my spouse or with my, and it's like, okay, and just giving them the space to come to that answer within them that they already know and then helping and supporting encouraging them through that.

often so often others are hoping we'd reach out to them and open up, you know, and they're often just so glad that we do when we do. Yeah.

Bryan (32:52)

Right. I agree. I think I heard some comedian saying that women live longer than men because laughter is an important reason for you to keep to live a longer life because you have to laugh. You know, the people that laugh more live longer. It's like a proven scientific thing. And that's the reason women live longer is because they're laughing at us men most of the time because we're you know, he was picking on himself kind of a thing, but it was a very good.

very well done little skit there on that front. Well, I want to pivot around to like, Circle Wellness Coaching is the company. What future plans and developments do you have and what's in store for the rest of this year and into next year with your business?

Donna Meyer (33:40)

Well, right now, I'm really thoroughly enjoying the one -on -one coaching space. I come out of each coaching session more energized and so much even more at peace. And I see my coaching even of one person as having a ripple effect on all the people around them potentially. You know, as I support each client on their journey, their transformations could be affecting so many of those around them.

I'm not entirely sure, Bryan, what the future holds with my business, but I'm feeling there is even more in store and I'm staying open to possibilities. I'm also open to connecting with a wider audience, which we're doing here, thank you, so that more people will get to know more about my services and perhaps share with others.

Bryan (34:29)

I love it. I guess hit us with a tip or advice for other entrepreneurs in the healthcare profession or just in coaching. Like what tips or tricks could you give to some aspiring entrepreneurs that might be watching this show and wanting to follow in your footsteps a little bit.

Donna Meyer (34:49)

Yeah, I would say be you. As you grow your business, don't be afraid to share who you are. People who are you are meant to benefit people who are meant to benefit from your services will resonate. Create space for yourself as you create your business as well. Don't create a business that you'll later resent. Allow yourself to slow down and center on who you are being now and who you want to become.

And then make informed business decisions, but also listen to your heart. What do you really, really want along with that? And then continue to learn, you know, be open to new opportunities for learning and exploring things change. It's just makes makes life in business more. It gives it so much more energy and purpose and knowing that you're

Continuing to grow along with your clients in a coaching specific situation

Bryan (35:51)

Well said, I love those. Those are some really, really great tips. So thank you, Donna, for being a part of this. I want to give everybody a chance, like, what can we do as a community to help support you? And what are the best ways to get in touch?

Donna Meyer (36:08)

Yeah. Well, first of all, thank you. I really appreciated being a part of this podcast and being invited to be here today, Bryan. It's great talking to you. You know, with all my marketing, being through word of mouth, social media, you know, sharing the podcast with others that you might feel might be interested in my services would benefit both you and I, Bryan, right? So sharing with anyone that you know.

Bryan (36:30)

Mm -hmm, yeah.

Donna Meyer (36:36)

You can reach out, anyone can reach out to me through my coaching website, which is circle wellness coaching .com. there's a free session link there if you're interested in going that route. and you'll find this, this website also connects to my whole food plant based recipe blog, which is green circle kitchen .com where I have some recipes that I've created a few, and lifestyle medicine resources.

And then also through social media, my personal profile on Facebook, Donna Meyer, Circle Wellness Coaching Facebook page. I have a Green Circle Kitchen Community Group, which is where we share recipes and lifestyle medicine resources and just get inspired about eating more plants. Anyone is welcome there. Happy to have people join. And then on Instagram, I'm on Instagram and

On YouTube, I have just a couple of videos, but I have one that's the my freedom from obesity, a very short video, just a little bit of the story of my weight loss story that can be inspiring. So I invite people to go there. I'm also on LinkedIn. And if people want to connect with me professionally, I have my email as well. I'm guessing is maybe in the podcast notes. So yeah.

Bryan (37:52)

Yeah, absolutely. That's awesome. There's many, many ways to get in touch, but please check out Donna and CircleWellnessCoaching .com. I don't think I knew about the Green Circle Kitchen, so I'm gonna have to go check out that website and take a peek at that one too. Those are some great ways to get in touch. So thank you. Thank you very much, Donna, for being here. We really appreciate you sharing your insights and experiences with us in the community.

Donna Meyer (37:58)


Okay. Yeah. Yeah, please join.


You're so welcome, Bryan.

Bryan (38:21)

That is all the time we have for this episode of the Plant Based on Fire. Thank you for joining us and until next time everybody, keep that fire burning.


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