My life has been touched by some uber amazing women whose passion for life and the way they choose to live it have really inspired me. Some are bloggers, some are not, their lives are all different and they are all special. I feel honoured and privileged that they are sharing their stories and sprinkling a little bit of their awesome right here. May you be wom-inspired!
Meet Alexx Stuart.
If you love food and you love our planet then you’re in good company. Alexx is all about real (and very delicious) food and a low tox life. What sets Alexx apart though, is her no guilt, can do and more importantly, do what you can approach to healthy living, because isn’t that we all want to do, the best we can? Alexx has always wanted to make a difference, and make a difference she has, to so many people’s lives. Meet Alexx, she’s so inspiring!
Tell us a bit about yourself.
I’m Alexx. I’ve always been a determined and enthusiastic person.
In my family life, I have a darling near-7 year old little man who I love and adore with everything I’ve got. His Dad, my husband is pretty awesome too. We’re an international family, with my British Dad, French Mauritian mum and family all over the world, which I’m very grateful for – It makes adventuring lots of fun with a sense of home in many places, because of the family factor. We moved here when I was a little girl. We live smack bang in inner Sydney – I’m someone who either wants to live in the middle of it all or in the sticks. There’s no in between for me. My mum in law and parents both live in the Southern Highlands so we get the absolute best of both worlds. Very lucky.
Work and purpose wise, I believe I can help make a difference in the world – have done since I was a teen. Back then I’d dream with my first boyfriend about being the next Bono and Geldof and we’d practice our Grammy acceptance speeches wholeheartedly. Over the years and through the career incarnations I’ve had, it has become clearer and clearer to me how I must and want to help, and that way is this:
I spent my 20s and early 30s gung ho in the cosmetics industry, and then hospitality. I learnt a lot in those industries – I learnt business in cosmetics with the LVMH group and I learnt people in hospitality. While they were totally unrelated to the work I do now, they were invaluable to me to helping me achieve the goals I have today.
Sickness (nothing major, just chronic tonsillitis, PCOS, thyroid issues and now Pyrroles) has meant over the past 14 years, I’ve steadily grown in my realisation that what we put on and in us can have a profound effect on our health AND the planet’s health. My job is to help people realise the same. I want to help people want to (not *have* to), make changes for the better in their lives, to help you feel more awesome. I love that all the good changes we make to feel more awesome, impact our world for the better too. Healthier people + healthier planet = the holy grail of wellness don’t you think? I’m very hell bent on it being an enjoyable process for people rather than an angry, fearful process. Otherwise what’s the point?
Tell us 3 things you are and 3 things you’re not.
Three things I am? Optimistic, determined and a little afraid of huntsman spiders.
Three things I am not? Gosh… that’s actually quite difficult. I’m not shy, not flippant, not short of a thousand cuddles – love a good cuddle.
Complete this sentence, ____________________ changed my life. How and why?
Having crappy health changed my life… In having a couple of rock bottom moments, it forced me to think outside of the box in that I had spent so much time tackling the same problems in the same way with no relief or change and things getting worse. Thinking outside the box sent me on a steep learning curve that happened in 3 waves over 3 major life and health events. Once I realised there was so much injustice in our food system, medication, personal care and cleaning product industries, I knew I had to do something in education and awareness. I just had to. So crappy health opened me up to the most purpose led work I’ve ever done and I will be forever grateful for that in an odd sort of way.
What has been life’s greatest lesson?
Life IS one great big lesson. One of my favourite lessons has been that if we don’t use difficult, negative or unjust events as a springboard for greater, happier, more just times, then we can stay bitter and that my friends, is just about the most sure fire way how to have a very unhappy time of it. I truly feel that that realisation has been one of my greatest gifts to achieve meaningful work that makes a difference, as well as happiness in my personal life.
What is your biggest achievement?
Growing a human. Pretty big achievement. And to what the point of your question was probably more about: This may sound completely corny, but my community is my biggest achievement. You can write investigative articles, you can point out injustices, unsustainable things, pesticide laden crops and ingredients, chemicals that are allowed in things that harm our health and the planet’s and all the rest… but unless people connect, share, do the work in their own lives, come on board and create change in numbers, it’s meaningless. My blog isn’t always chocolate recipes – They’re our delicious hard earned break for the important work we’re all doing to get weirdo crap out of our food systems and homes. I feel immensely proud in my e course chat groups and on my community page when I stand back and watch all these 1000s of impassioned people on a mission for a better world through positive change and choices, big and small. I truly get goosebumps on a daily basis.
What has been your toughest obstacle and how have you overcome it?
I have been my toughest obstacle. Don’t we all do that annoying thing where we get in our own way? “You can’t do it, you don’t have the resources, you’re too fat to share food advice (seriously, I’ve said that to myself as a size 12. Ridiculous!) You don’t have time to be a good mum and run a good business, You don’t know anything about online business, you can’t do an e course that’s crazy, you’re not well researched enough…. And on and on and on… LUCKY that obstacle lessens as the years go on. Just the occasional bump in the road these days, but I truly think – like a muscle needs to be worked to grow strong – our personal inbuilt obstacle needs to be ignored until it eventually weakens and only bothers you quietly every now and then.
Viktor Frankl says “Those who have a ‘why’ to live, can bear with almost any ‘how.” Everyone needs a purpose, what’s yours?
My purpose is no 1 to lead a peaceful life and no 2 to change the world. Doing “values” work with a coach a couple of years ago was the best investment I’ve made in my personal growth as a leader. I remember signing up to a big environmental group on the first day of O-week at uni some 22 years ago now. I thought it was what ‘good humans’ did. Now, I adore their work, I truly do, but I didn’t identify comfortably with the way the work was done. I saw a lot of anger in the meet ups, constant frustration, fighting people… It just wasn’t in me to get what we needed done for the world, done with anger and fighting as my fuel. But I did have the frustration with the injustices of the world and I DID want to make a difference. It wasn’t until my mid 30s that I realised if I was going to feel great about changing the world, I had to find a peaceful, loving way to do it – It was the work I did on my values, that helped me truly vet and navigate how that would look. I run e courses and write articles where we tackle some pretty serious stuff going on in the world, BUT we do it through love, connection, positive change at the grassroots, making friends along the way, making gorgeous recipes to connect with loved ones at the table… I’ve found a way to peacefully change the world through community change and therefore, it’s sustainable for me because it’s totally in line with my values.
What are your words to live by?
Just start. Just be honest. Just do what sits right with you. Just hug. Just relax. A combination of these 4 phrases in my life, seems to stand me in good stead in most situations where a decision or challenge come my way.
If you could have any mentor, alive or dead, who would you choose and why?
I would love a bit of quality Maya Angelou time absolutely. Luckily I have her words as my guide when I’m after some inspiration and mentorship.
If you could play hookie for a day what would be on your list to do?
Walk the streets of Paris from 7am to midnight. Definitely. Just walking and stopping for food occasionally for the whole day. Heaven.
You give so much to others, what do you do to take care of yourself?
Bath time, the Bondi to Bronte with a good girlfriend and good chats, time with family, time just reading something interesting on the couch, time meditating with a good essential oil blend diffusing and Deepak Chopra’s voice taking me to happy, faraway places. I also love a good restaurant. I was in hospitality for 8 years and I just love the art of wonderful service, from the chef who cares, through to the waiter that knows the perfect thing to say. It’s art when it’s done well and really makes me feel I’ve treated myself.
Thank you for sharing, Alexx.
Let Alexx inspire you a little bit more…
over at Low Tox Life
and on snapchat @Alexx_Stuart