(Changing The Way You Think)
Amy Darcy is the Founder and Editor of the blog Eat, Pray Workout. She is a lawyer, army wife and a mum. She has a powerful voice as someone who is passionate about sharing a balanced and simple approach to healthy living. She loves Jesus and her aims for her blog, Eat Pray Workout is to inspire and equip woman. She also seeks to bring freedom from restrictive eating, and the striving towards false ideals and unrealistic expectations of one’s self and one’s body.
She has had a blog for 7 years, was awarded one of the top 50 finalists in one of Australia’s top 50 influencer awards, as well as winning one of the top five well-being blogs in 2018!
I loved getting to know Amy and her heart. I can’t wait for you all to read this interview and check out her website! What an inspiration she is.
Amy! For those of my readers who don’t know you yet, can you tell us a bit about yourself?
I’m a mum, and I would never have used to say that as the first thing to describe myself but I have learned to embrace that. My little boy, Finn, is 2 and a half and another one on the way in two weeks. I am also a lawyer, although I am not practicing at the moment, and I have a blog call Eat Pray Workout which is a healthy lifestyle blog.
Tell us about your passion for your website where you want it to take you.
This is a place for woman to learn to love themselves and not to live in a world of extreme diets or ideals. It is a place where women don’t have to feel like they have to live up to an unattainable goal, but rather get to a place where they embrace who they are.
I know that you were awarded one of the top 50 finalists in one of Australia’s top 50 influencer awards, and awarded one of the top five wellbeing blogs in Australia in 2018, in the 2018 Bupa Blog Awards. Well Done! So proud! For those reading this who are dabbling in writing, starting to discover they have a voice and something to say but don’t know where to start can you give some pointers?
I started 7 years ago as a hobby when I was studying hard, going to the gym and needed a creative outlet. Plus, I had passion for photography and I wanted to use that. I started looking at some YouTube tutorials on line about how to set up a blog. I began with the mindset that it would be a great way to keep in touch with my friends and family. Back than nobody ever blogged as a business, and so it started out just being a hobby. So it was just a hobby and something fun – a place where I could share what I was learning about healthy living.
How do you go from a process where you turn something that you are passionate about into a business?
I was blessed that God provided the right brands at the right time. The first company was a spice company that sent me some products. And I was so excited! Oh! Someone wants me to write about their product and put it on my blog. And now that is how most paid work comes to me. It is whatever shows up in my inbox and I think would be of benefit to my readers! I used to think, it would be great to do this full time, but I was studying law and I thought I would be a lawyer. But when I graduated and couldn’t get a job in the private sector, I decided to really give it a crack. So I made up my mind and then didn’t look back.
One thing I advise people is to sit down and write down your goals prior to starting. I sat down a wrote my three goals with my husband. This is so helpful. Especially when I am faced with decisions, should I go this way or that way, I always realign myself back to my foundational goals. Mine were so simple. 1. To bring glory to God 2. To give myself a creative outlet. 3.Share my knowledge with others.
Mine were not in depth business strategies, but they serve to establish the values of my business.
Being a busy mum and running a busy blog and business, this work is very multifaceted. What does a typical week look like?
It changes from week to week. At the moment I am living between Sydney and Canberra. It depends on what I am doing and what work I have on. The benefit of my job is that I can take it where ever I go. My husband goes away for two weeks at a time at the moment which can be hard. Last year he was deployed to the middle east for 7 months straight. So, my weeks change from week to week.
Usually I keep my work to Thursday and Friday because Finn goes to day care. On the other days, we go to the gym in the morning and he goes to the creche at the gym, then when we come home it changes. Sometimes I do house work or a bit of work or we do some church meetings. I am involved with Solid Rock, a Christian Defence Spouses group which is a really lovely welcoming place. Setting up a community centre for Solid Rock where women can drop in for support, weekly bible studies and other events has been a major part of my heart in this season with less blog work.
In regards to your personal life. How to you balance your own health with such a busy life and lifestyle.
Having a toddler makes me a little restricted in having a routine. But usually I go to the gym in the morning. I try to spend time with Jesus every day. I try to make good food choices each day. I love walking the dogs as I have two dogs which helps me clear my head when I walk them. When my husband is home it is a little different and I can have a routine. I always do food prep. Things that make it easier to eat healthy are: having a batch of cooked quinoa so that it is the base for a meal. I try to keep chopped vegetables or salads ready to be put into meals in the fridge. I try to have chopped fruit salad always in the fridge as well. Chopped fruit is so much more appealing than just fruit.
Body image is something so many girls struggle with. Girls not being comfortable or embracing their bodies is something that is common in women everywhere and certainly something I have struggled with myself. What is your journey with this? Have you always been very self-confident or has it been a journey for you?
No this is something I have come to with age and worked through with counsellors. I think it is something that you can work through. I think the language that we use to talk about ourselves and also what we let ourselves be exposed to is very important to be aware of. Recently I had a photoshoot and so decided to paint my nails. So I turned on the TV while I did that. I don’t normally have time to watch TV. I was amazed that every single commercial seemed to be telling people that they were not good enough and why they needed the product to make them feel better.
I think we need to be aware about what messages we are hearing and be intentional about who we are following and allowing to influence us. Look at the message of the people that you are following and the way they are making you feel. Look at the subtle underlying messages of your social feed and be selective about who you follow and who you allow to influence your mind and thoughts. Also hold onto the Bible verses that tell you what God thinks about you. Put them on the back of your phone, and use them in those times where you need to remind yourself that you’re enough and loved as you are right now.
What does a typical day on a plate look like to you?
I change this around every few days as I get bored. Currently I have porridge every morning, with some protein powder, some chia seeds, and some banana. I always have breakfast as I cannot function without it. I have fruit and crackers, or eggs or some cheese and whole meal crackers for morning tea. For lunch I might have a curried egg sandwich or a curried egg salad. For snacks at the moment I have bliss balls in the fridge. Now days I have a lot more carbohydrates and treats than ever before, I find that because I allow myself treats, than I can eat treats in moderation and not go overboard. Back in early marriage days, I used to track every calorie and put it into an app. I used to eat very strictly and then I would have big blow out binges.
Learning to manage anxiety and depression with a psychologist along with seeing a dietician helped me to have a much more balanced diet. Educating myself with a psychologist and being more self aware about myself and my emotions helped for me to understand what was triggering and causing the binge eating. This has allowed me to have a much more balanced diet.
In regards to exercise, I think that in the beginning girls discover exercise and the enjoyment of it, but than the focus can turn into becoming obsessive, and you can turn your body into starvation mode. It is so important to educate yourself from the right sources from the beginning. It takes a lot of time to get there. For me it took a lot of journaling.
Thank you for sharing this. I know that this is a deeply vulnerable part of yourself.
Your so welcome. Hopefully it will help someone else say, oh yes me too!!
To end. What is one thing that is saving your life right now?
One thing. I would have to say my group of ladies at Solid Rock which is my Christian women’s defence group. A couple of the ladies are even on standby in case I go into labour, as my husband is away at the moment. Having time to read the Bible together has been so wonderful. And they have been so supportive, and like a solid rock for me. We all understand what it is like to have a husband who is away a lot, and they have become like sisters.
For those of my readers who would like to get in touch how can they do that?
Remember anything Bold and Italics will have links on it!
Own Your Health – Changing The Way You Think, Eat and Live