Worthy Women, Fourth Edition: Christa Orecchio
Who: Christa Orecchio
Occupation: Clinical and Holistic nutritionist; entrepreneur ( http://www.thewholejourney.com) ([email protected])
Location: Encinitas, CA
Christa is a breath of fresh air. She is one of those people that you almost can’t believe is for real in the beginning- she is just that amazing. But tried and true, this woman is legit. She is intelligent, fun, extremely motivated, shiny, happy, witty, deep, investigative, clear and most of all….compassionate.
If you can’t tell, I both love and admire Christa. We share many of the same interests, passions and beliefs. There is a funny story to how I first “met” her. When I first graduated from IIN(Institute of Integrative Nutrition) about 5 years ago, it was part of the program to go to local grocery stores and hold tours, teaching people how to identify and pick the healthiest food. This was fresh and forward at that time. Well… every single store I went in, Christa’s bright and beautiful face was posted everywhere…she already clearly had the monopoly on Grocery Tours. I thought, “Who is this lady? And how the heck is she everywhere already?!”
Little did I know that was just the beginning…she has created an amazing program called Gut Thrive, that I have actually participated in and highly recommend, is regularly on Fox New delivering holistic tips, and recently co-authored a book, “How to Conceive Naturally and Have a Healthy Pregnancy Over 30”. She was and IS everywhere, and I am personally so happy about it.
We desperately need people like her in the world. She is one step ahead at all times, naturally. She carves the way for us, all of us-nutritional practitioners and also just health conscious people in general-using “food as medicine” to heal ourselves and others. She is a leader, a clear communicator, a path forger, a hacker of theories and programs…and if it’s not obvious already…she is my (self-appointed) mentor. I believe it is important to have role models in life, and she is one of my big ones. She lives consciously not in one area of life, but in all areas of life.
I hope you enjoy her answers as much as I did, as the questions she said herself caused her to “dig deeper that she normally does in public’.
1) Who are you?
I am a functional and holistic nutritionist and an entrepreneur; a healer with a passionate drive to use my life force for the highest good during my short time here on earth.
I’m an Italian girl from New Jersey who loves and needs yoga, meditation, and spiritual exploration. I love the ocean, nature, wide-open spaces, art and design, organic food (and wine), science, traveling, my friends and my family.
I am a light worker and instrument of God, disguised as a TV personality who spreads the message of how real food heals.
I’m a Vespa-riding free spirit with wanderlust and a recovering perfectionist.
I’m calm and grounded and also frenetic.
I’m decisive and also mercurial.
I am a dichotomy, depending on the day.
Passionate about helping others and as my company grows; I’m becoming more passionate about vigilant self-care because no one will do it for you and you’re not as valuable to others when you show up with an empty tank.
I am an authentic, highly sensitive, imperfect person who wants to surround herself with genuine, heart-centered people who strive to be present, make the world a better place, and better themselves.
2) What is the greatest challenge you have overcome/are overcoming?
Pacing my personal growth with the growth of my business.
It’s been a necessary component for entrepreneurial success and at times almost crippling when the company grows before you do.
I think when you do the work of your soul, there’s a requirement of extreme personal accountability and responsibility that forces you to face yourself again and again so that you are able to get out of your own way and unabashedly give your gifts to the world with self-assurance.
As my business has grown, it has demanded more and more of me, including aspects of myself that had not yet been nurtured or developed. It’s forced me to find strength and resolve and to consistently pick myself up when things “don’t work out or go as planned”.
Helping thousands of others heal in deep health processes requires strength, compassion, intuition, empathy, a certain degree of neutrality, and extremely clear boundaries.
It’s required me to temper my natural people-pleasing tendencies in favor of the greater good of the collective and my own personal peace and happiness.
Work-life balance is something I have always struggled with, but I’m now beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel, not necessarily because of the external things like the creation of turnkey systems, documenting processes, improving marketing, and leveraging technology, but rather as a reflection of the inner work and expanded partnership with life and spirit.
3) What have you learned?
The Top 10 Life Lesson’s I’ve learned thus far are:
- Patience is a virtue (and one I may always aspire to and chase ;). Aim for progress not perfection.
- Doing things right is better than doing them fast.
- Vulnerability is an incredible strength, not a weakness.
- Clear boundaries are healthy and essential in all relationships. However, they should not come from old wounds but rather from personal power.
- The human spirit is amazingly resilient.
- Being kind is more important than being right.
- When you judge others, it leaves no space to love them –this includes yourself.
- Every external situation, no matter how challenging is an opportunity for growth and evolution.
- Everyone is fighting their own battle and whether they are kind and gracious or angry and stubborn, they deserve compassion –which is the greatest healing force on the planet.
- Acceptance of self, of others, and of “what is” is the ultimate freedom.