Have you met our Co-Founder Sarah?

With Lydia’s pending departure due to maternity leave, we thought it might be useful to meet our other co-founder, Sarah. Sarah is delighted to be continuing as the Director of BodyMatters.

NICKNAME: Sare… I’m really not sure how to spell it but it falls off the tongue of my family & friends!

QUALIFICATIONS: I hold a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, two post graduate diplomas in Psychology & a Masters of Public Health. I am a member of the Australian Psychological Society & also a fully accredited Mediator.

ACHIEVEMENTS: The proudest moment in my life (so far!) was purchasing an apartment in Sydney in my mid twenties. My most satisfying moment was renovating it.

WHY DID YOU PURSUE PSYCHOLOGY? I feel that “psychology” chose me- rather than me choosing psychology. I had had exposure to certain life experiences as a teenager. I promised myself, at the time, that if I ever made it through them unscathed I would commit my professional life to supporting other people through difficult times. And so here I am!

WHY DID YOU ESTABLISH BODYMATTERS? Lydia & I shared the vision of reducing the toxic cultural context of eating disorders & improving access to good treatment for eating disorders. Starting BodyMatters was a no brainer for us as it was a natural extension of what we continued to find ourselves choosing to do in our spare time.

YOUR FAVOURITE QUOTE: Actually I love quotes & find them very inspiring! I think Andre Gide nailed it when he stated “It is better to be hated for what you are than loved for what you are not”. And one I think we all need to remember, particularly during difficult times, is “You cannot discover new oceans unless you have the courage to lose sight of the shore”, by the very smart Anonymous… As a Christian I also find the bible is filled with many good quotes.

WHERE DO YOU SEE YOURSELF IN 10 YEARS: Professionally I intend on continuing our good work at BodyMatters, helping even more people than we already do. Personally I hope that my life continues to develop in the directions that I choose- & is ultimately shared with people that I love.

FAVOURITE SPORTS OR ACTIVITIES: I really enjoy regular individual & group personal training; outdoor activities like long walks, skiing & snorkeling (except for being scared of sharks & deep water); wine tasting & fine dining; exploring new places; and, of course, shopping!

FAVOURITE HOBBIES OR INTERESTS: I love travelling. I have recently started crocheting- which is most satisfying. Actually I enjoy doing pretty much anything creative- life drawing, making jewelry,  and “decorating” almost anything I can get my hands on!

WHAT IS YOUR SECRET SKILL: I would like to say cooking however in all honesty it is probably my resourcefulness.

WHO OR WHAT INSPIRES YOU: My clients! Working in the field of eating disorders is incredibly satisfying as usually the progress of my clients is so tangible.

WHO WERE YOUR CHILDHOOD HEROES: My sisters & I used to love “the Goodies”. But they self-identified with Tim & Bill- and assigned me as being Graham Garden- who I didn’t really like!. So I’m not sure where that leaves me…

3 THINGS YOU WOULD TAKE ON A DESERT ISLAND: The people I love- which well & truly exceeds my quota.

WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE INDULGENCE: A massage, manicure, pedicure or facial

WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE MOVIE: I love the depth & candidness of foreign films- particularly the Italian movies “The Manual of Love” & “Life is Beautiful”. I also love any movie with a heroine- “Frida”, “Evita”, even “The Sound of Music”…

FAVOURITE PLACES TO TRAVEL: I have had the good fortune of travelling to many destinations before they became “touristy”- which I really love. My first really adventurous trip with my family when I was in primary school, up the Mekong Delta in a long boat visiting the hill tribes of far northern Thailand. My twin sister & I were horrified when Akha tribe described how they killed twins because one was considered good & the other one evil! Morocco, which I visited about 15 years ago, is a massive standout as it was the first time I had been to a “Muslim” country and I found experiencing the culture so different from what I would have expected based on the mass anti-muslim propaganda that I think we are exposed to in Australia. I love the layers of history in Portugal, which is literally quantified in paint work that peels off their decaying buildings- it is a country so rich in history- once so prosperous & yet now so poor. Recently I visited China & I thoroughly enjoyed the fascinating interface between the aspirational capitalist values, the presiding communism regime & still, a profound cultural richness.

IF YOU DIDN’T PURSUE PSYCHOLOGY, WHAT OTHER PROFESSION WOULD YOU PURSUE: It is hard for me to imagine doing anything else as it really is such a privilege for me to be working as a psychologist. However I started studying Architecture at Sydney Uni immediately after school- and that would still be my first choice for an alternative career. I also hope to study Art History when I retire as I find the skill of artist, the symbolism within artwork, and the historical & socio-political context that artwork reflects, truly fascinating.

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