Nikki Heyder’s site NOOD is a wealth of inspiration and it was a pleasure to interview Nikki for Talking Broadly.
Where do you currently live?
I currently live in Perth, Western Australia.
What currently keeps you busy?
My business! NOOD has so many different aspects to it so I am always busy with something whether it be a catering job, a one-on-one coaching session, posting out items from the online store or hosting a workshop. I love the variety though – its great!
How did you come to launch NOOD?
NOOD definitely started with a passion for food, cooking and health. Years ago I would post my creations onto Facebook as a bit of a hobby and slowly more and more people started to ask for recipes or seemed to have an interest in what I was doing. At this stage I was still working in the corporate world as a HR Advisor but soon decided to take a bit of my own career advice and jump ship! I couldn’t bear the thought of working behind a desk my whole life when I maybe had the opportunity to turn my passion into my job. I started all over again, working my way up from a kitchen hand into head cook at a busy restaurant while I pursued my studies in Nutritional Counselling. My decision to further my studies in Coaching came a bit later when I recognised that many people need MORE than just nutritional advice. WHY aren’t they eating properly? WHAT is causing them to be stressed? Health Coaching is a new part of my business which I feel goes hand in hand with nutrition and allows me to see the ‘bigger’ picture.
What is your primary philosophy for healthy living in a modern world?
To be balanced and not let anything totally overwhelm or consume you. This is applicable for everything – don’t get SO consumed in your job that you forget to spend time with your loved ones, or don’t become so obsessed with fitness to the point that you damage your body. Even with health and diet I find that many people let it literally take over their lives whereby they no longer go out to dinner in fear of what might be in the food they order. Being balanced is so important otherwise you will drive yourself crazy! I am a very healthy person but if I have had a stressful day at work I allow myself to have a glass or two of red wine because I enjoy it – I don’t deprive myself of treats because I know that 95% of the time I am extremely healthy.
What do you do personally to stay healthy, and live a balanced lifestyle?
I eat very well, I listen to my body, I drink plenty of filtered water, I practice Yoga every day, I find time for ‘me’, I keep in touch with my family and friends and I exercise regularly. I am also learning to be totally content with myself as a person and with what my core values are. I think when I was younger I would often worry about what others thought or found it hard to say ‘no’. But now I don’t and it’s a great feeling.
How do you approach meditation?
I guess for me, it is about practicing mindfulness and being ‘present’ where ever I can. A close friend of mine recently reminded me of how much technology and work can remove us psychologically from the present time so I try really hard to just focus on what is happening right now rather than worrying about the past or future. Whenever I experience negative thoughts or feelings of anxiety, I make sure I always acknowledge them, figure out where they are coming from and try to remove them from my mind. Finding peace & quiet in my mind is very important because I constantly have 100 things running through my head at any one time. Practising Yoga and focusing on my breath and on the movements, allows me to find clarity and I always feel so much better afterwards.
What does a typical day look like for you, assuming you have a ‘typical day’!
Haha good question! I very rarely have a typical day but it would definitely consist of at least 4 of the following things:
– catering for a few different cafes (I do healthy take-away lunch boxes for a few shops around Perth)
– perhaps a catering job for an event
– ordering food through my suppliers
– meeting with a new of existing client for a one-on-one coaching session
– recipe testing
– writing articles
– administrative work (replying to e-mails etc)
– public speaking or hosting a workshop
– posting out items that people have ordered through the online store
Do you do anything daily that is non negotiable?
Every day I dry brush my entire body before having a shower and then moisturise it with coconut oil. It is a must do for me to maintain healthy skin, especially with winter fast approaching!
How do you define creativity?
Gosh this is a tough question! Creativity is any personal expression of ourselves… We are all creative in one way or another even if we don’t particularly see it ourselves. Take my boyfriend for example – he is a carpenter and he often shows me these incredible structures that he creates – they are so precise and meticulously built. I know that so much time has gone into it to make it perfect. I often tell him how creative he is and how amazing his work is but he doesn’t see it as creativity, he sees it as his job. It’s the same with food, or writing or singing or painting – its an expression that comes directly from US even if we do it every single day. I think it’s creative because it is always unique. You could give two people the same ingredients and the final dish will be totally different because each is a reflection of that individual person. And that’s pretty special!
What brings you the most joy in your life?
I love helping others and I love cooking for the people I love… I get a real burst of joy when I receive an e-mail or a phone call from one of my clients telling me that their day has been more positive as a result of one of our sessions. I also get the same feeling when I have poured my heart into a dish and served it to someone special and they tell me how much they enjoyed it. I find my job extremely rewarding and I am very grateful for it…. In saying that my little dog also brings me extremely happiness! I could never forget about her. She is my every day companion and best friend.
What do you define as happiness?
For me, happiness is being totally content in the moment, smiling for no reason, being able to face obstacles with determination rather than fear or anxiety. I don’t believe that we can be happy all the time though… I think it is very important to experience sadness and allow ourselves to be present with our emotions, because if we didn’t know how it felt to be down or angry or hurt, we wouldn’t recognise and appreciate life when we are on a natural high.
What do you consider your greatest achievement to be?
Although it is still very much a baby business, I am really proud of how NOOD has grown and where it stands right now. I am proud of myself for chasing my dreams and pursuing my passion and I think that just getting THIS far, is a huge achievement in itself.
What qualities do you seek in people?
I love genuine people. I dislike people who judge before getting to know someone. I love a good sense of humour (not only because I love laughing but I think I am generally not very funny so I admire people who are). I seek respect, support and loyalty because I feel that I am a respectful, supportive and loyal person. I also seem to have very driven friends and family so I guess I must naturally seek out ‘go getters’ as they inspire me to do the same.
What is a saying or motto you live by or that is relevant to you right now?
Since doing my coaching certification, I have developed a real interest in change and growth and I stumbled across this quote a little while ago which I think is really relevant to my of us who fear change:
“For a seed to achieve it’s greatest expression, it must come completely undone. The shell cracks, its insides come out and everything changes. To someone who doesn’t understand growth, it would look like complete destruction.” – Cynthia Occelli.