Combat work stress as you travel with the support of a personal wellness coach in Los Angeles
Dr Kathy Gruver is an award-winning personal wellness coach who is dedicated to nurturing positive change in women who suffer from work stress.
Kathy’s book, ‘The Alternative Medicine Cabinet’ has been transformed into a national talk show and she has also released a popular instructional massage DVD.
As a talented practitioner Kathy guides her clients with compassion. She provides them with nutritional advice, as well as mind/body meditation, guided meditation and massage techniques via modern and ancient methods.
Her ultimate goal is to give options and tools to her clients so that they become their own active health advocates.
Kathy has a massage and hypnotherapy practice in Santa Barbara, California. She also practices in and around Los Angeles and offers face to face, Skype, phone and email consultations.
‘Health and wellness are passions of mine and it’s a joy to be able to help people move forward in their lives.’ – Dr Kathy Gruver
Here Kathy tells Nativa World about her unique method, plus where and how businesswomen can relax during a trip to LA…
Kathy, what does the word ‘Enrich’ mean to you?
To me it means to expand, to add to, to allow something that’s already in existence to grow and be nurtured.
What’s your philosophy on health?
It’s about choices. No matter what situation we’re in we always have other options to explore. You can get a second opinion from your physician; you can try a different massage therapist or add acupuncture. We can change what we put in our bodies and our minds. Another philosophy is my threefold perspective on health. The first is to eliminate things that are causing issues, such as a food or a habit. The second is to add things back in that we need but might not be getting; such as a vitamin or mineral or more water. Then the third is to put extra things on, maybe it’s a homeopathic medicine or other treatments. But unless we get rid of the things that are causing the problems we won’t find complete health.
What sets you apart from other personal wellness coaches?
As a practitioner I’m versatile. I started out as massage therapist and then moved into herbs, homeopathy, Reiki, birth assisting, health consulting and I also pursued a masters and a PhD. I’m a specialist in stress reduction and mind/body medicine and have also added hypnotherapy to my practice. I give people options. I also always refer out to other people if I don’t feel like I can help them. Health and wellness are passions of mine and it’s a joy to be able to help people move forward in their lives.
What are the most popular services that you offer?
That would be massage, though I do quite a bit of hypnotherapy and health/stress consulting. My books are also incredibly popular as two of them are about stress which is prevalent in society today. I’m also seeing that more people love the hypnotherapy. It’s so relaxing and good for stress relief and life improvement. You can see results pretty quickly, even after two or three sessions. It’s also a lot of fun. Everyone really enjoys the mythic and archetypal journeys as it’s those that can help you move forward in your life and really get in touch with what your subconscious is trying to indicate to you.
What does the process with clients involve?
I find out what they’re looking for on the phone or via Skype first of all. For the massage I’ll take a quick look at their body and their alignments. And then get them into the treatment room for 60-90 minutes of work. Hypnotherapy consists of about 40 minutes of talking before we actually do the 10 to 15 minutes of hypnosis. And the health consultant and stress consulting take about 90 minutes for the first session where we do a lot of talking and there’s a quite a large questionnaire to fill out.
Do you work with many business women?
Yes, I have lectured for major organizations on work/life balance and women’s stress issues. I see everyone from extreme athletes to students to artists to teachers. There’s no one category of people that find me. The common denominator is people dealing with stress, pain or injuries and they know I can help them.
What are the key benefits of your methods for your clients?
Pain relief, increased range of motion, an understanding of what may be causing their pain or illness and then relief from stress. Via hypnotherapy I’ve helped improve sleep, stress, anxiety issues and helped with pre and post operative situations. The health consulting goes very deep and we can often come up with a game plan that really helps people move forward in their lives. I offer a three-hour mythic and archetypal journey, which has really helped people find direction and purpose in their lives as they move forward.
It what ways can living in LA be stressful?
I think the major stressor in Los Angeles is the enormous amount of traffic. You joke that you have to go three miles down the road you better give yourself an hour. It’s just so hard to predict, so that can be incredibly stressful. It’s also a very fast-moving city. It can be loud and are always things going on. Unless you know where to find the solitude and quiet it can be difficult to find, but it’s there. Definitely there.
Where would you suggest women go to relax in LA ?
Griffith Park is a nice place where you can sit or hike. It’s also good to try and take advantage of the good food and drinks in the city. It can be incredibly relaxing to sit down, even by yourself and have a beautiful meal. Seeing a show at one of the amazing live theater venues or maybe a concert at the Hollywood Bowl is relaxing. Or try out activities outside of your comfort zone, such as on Santa Monica pier there are flying trapeze and aerial classes. I’m there almost weekly!
What’s your best strategy for stress relief during a business trip?
That would be the mini meditation. It’s very simple to do and even myself, a very type A driven person can do it easily. You simply concentrate on your breath, the rise and fall of your chest. On the inhales you think, “I am.” And repeat. On the exhales you think, “at peace.” And repeat also. So if you are paying attention to your breath and simply repeating, “I am… At peace.”.
What’s The Alternative Medicine Cabinet about?
It’s an alternate way of thinking. It goes back to options. Not every option in my book or in my practice is going to help every person. You look at it as a buffet. You don’t storm out of the restaurant because there are green beans on the buffet and you don’t eat green beans, you simply skip them, try them or eat something else. That’s how I look at my books and my practice. I offer options. I have also written two further books, Journey of Healing and Conquer Your Stress With Mind/Body Techniques.
Photography courtesy of Dr Kathy Gruver