We're so fortunate to work with and amongst some amazing people in the health & wellness industry. We're so excited to introduce you to our lovely client & friend Sascha Jones for our 'Talking Straight' series.
Sascha Jones is the co-founder of Set the Bar, the umbrella company to professionally formulated supplementary sports food, enerGi Bio Bars & EMPOWdER, a range of 100% Organic fermented mushroom powder blends. Along with running her businesses, Sascha loves practising yoga, pilates, meditation and martial arts. She is a big believer in creating a positive life balance and doing the hard work personally to create the best version of ourselves. Here's Sascha.
SUPR: What does your morning routine look like?
SJ: My morning routine depends on whether it is a school day or not, or a weekend with school sport as I have two young boys. I try to be in bed by 9.30 pm & up by 6 am – a half hour before my kids' wake – so I can take some time to centre & ground myself, to be grateful for the things in my life. I ALWAYS make a coffee – usually Bulletproof with EMPOWdER or a soy or almond latte. Then it's chaos from 6.30 am to 7.30 am with the school rush hour to get the kids out the door - we have a long drive to school. I train with my PT a couple of times a week. I will come home & walk my dogs on our farm & work out if I haven’t already after drop off. I'll then meditate/practice self Reiki & make a smoothie or hearty breakfast & take my supplements before I kick start the day with my work & household schedule. If I have meetings in Sydney I tend to make them on my days off from a workout.
SUPR: What does ‘health’ mean to you?
SJ: Health holds a number of meanings for me – I feel like we need to find our balance individually as we are all so different in what makes us feel healthy. Being the best versions of ourselves – however, that looks to us is what I feel optimal health is. I break it down to:
Mental Health - I suffer anxiety & have experienced depression through my life and post-natal depression after the birth of my first son. I have managed this with diet, exercise & meditation & am never afraid to see a therapist or healer if I need to work through things. Sometimes we don’t catch it when we are in the fog but I have a strong support network of friends, family & a great relationship with my partner to get me through. I try to stay positive no matter what – let go of things that we have no control over or do not serve us any longer and just remember to breathe!
Physical Health - I am fortunate enough to not have any major ailments or illness & at 45 I feel young in spirit. Nutritionally I now know that I feel best when I eliminate wheat, dairy, sugar & avoid alcohol as much as possible – I do love my wine – & eat mostly plant-based whole foods with some fish & meat protein occasionally. I am not an angel – I am social & love a breakout – fries with gravy, ice cream & pizza, but I try to stick to what I know works. I have a PT & practice yoga and walk my dogs – sometimes with my boys. I work out as much as I can to feel comfortable in my own skin, for stress release & a mental regroup.
Emotional Health - I love a good laugh as much as a big cry & find that I am pretty open & honest about my feelings – sometimes too much so! I believe things happen for reasons – no matter how traumatic – so I try to process emotion in a positive way even when I have come out of my darkest hours.
Spiritual health – this is a huge part of my definition of optimal health – I have done a lot of self-help work, courses & classes over the past 25 years – space clearing, meditation, Yoga Teacher Training, Reiki Practitioner Certification – so I have a lot of knowledge & great tools to keep me self aware & on track when I go off. All our journeys are a work in progress – for me, it is all about evolving, learning, facing & dealing with our issues to live our best life – & having fun along the way.
SUPR: What are five things you’ll always have in your fridge/pantry?
SJ: Nutty Bruce Unsweetened Almond Milk
Bonsoy Soy Milk
Lemons from our trees
Farm fresh eggs
EMPOWdER, LSA, Hemp protein powder
Fermented Kimchi or Sauerkraut
Nespresso Coffee Pods
Chocolate – mostly dark but not always
That is more than 5……
SUPR: What’s your favourite form of movement?
SJ: I am a happy body when in motion. I find yoga is my sweet spot where I feel most anchored. A good HIIT sweat or run is my go-to. Stand Up Paddleboarding is a great zen activity. Walking my dogs – I come up with some of my best thinking & ideas when I take 20 minutes with them, or a mean kickboxing session is great therapy.
SUPR: If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?
SJ: The beach & the ocean are my happy place – we have a family property in Vanuatu & it is PARADISE. I love the snow and skiing – my brother Adam & I grew up in Thredbo Village, NSW - so the snow is in our DNA. I love the Australian countryside & nature – we live on 105 acres in the Central Coast Hinterland - but I would have to say NYC. I lived there for 5 years and Manhattan just gets in your blood. There is something about the energy there, the creativity, innovation, culture mix, food, 24/7 & the buzz – all on one VERY TINY island.
SUPR: What is one fun fact most people wouldn’t know about you?
SJ: I sing & dance like no one is watching – mostly when no one is watching. My kids get a loud song blast & my singing in the car on the school run - they are my captive audience.
SUPR: Why is it important to you to be Straight Up and authentic? Have you ever struggled in the past with being your true self?
SJ: I don’t know any other way to be than straight up – my moral compass is very honest & finely tuned & I find that if I deviate too much from living the path that is best serving my true self that things don’t flow for me. There have been times I have struggled for sure – & there will be times ahead for certain but I always seem to find my way back to my authentic state. I like to be direct with people – I ask questions (sometimes too many – it comes from my mum!) but I am genuinely interested in people and their stories & how they got to be who they are. I come from a place of love and non-judgment - I feel that is how I like to be treated. What you put out you get back. I like to know where I stand with people & for them to know where they stand with me – open communication & listening to what others have to say is key. It can be confronting for some but that is how I work. I find it has been a big learning curve to stay true to my personal integrity in business & still remain in the game, but I know that is how I have always worked personally with family & friends & in my relationships. This is our professional philosophy for Set The Bar. I think at the end of the day like attracts like & that is what sets you apart - in all areas of life.
SUPR: The health industry isn’t perfect. If you had the power to change one thing about it, what would it be and why?
SJ: No industry is perfect. My brother & business partner, Adam & I have come into the health industry with our company Set The Bar from luxury high-end Fashion + Design retail & the Financial Market, so have found it to be a big friendly, open hug in comparison. The wellness industry has grown at a very rapid pace over the past few years yet has been very supportive in terms of the connections & relationships we have made & the encouragement & exchange of information shared. There are so many inspiring companies, products & people in this industry – committed to wellness & a positive level of living.
If I had to say anything it would be that as a small start-up company with new products to offer to the market place, the health industry is very structured in its set up as to how you get those products to the consumers via distribution channels. This has shifted & tightened over the past few years – there are only a handful of the big players in distribution & most retailers prefer only to deal with those companies when they purchase products. So it does make it hard to approach the bigger retailers as a start-up company on your own - hitting the pavement - even when you have a great product that is new, quality, on-trend & innovative. I have found it to be a challenge & one that I would like to see change – however that looks going forward.
You can follow Sascha and Set The Bar on Instagram at @setthebar.co