She says that one of best decisions in her life was to become vegan. She left well paid office job and turned her passion into a living. She discovered that happiness is hidden outside the comfort zone and decided to dedicate her life to help others. Nothing seems to make her happy more than guiding others into healthy lifestyle, which happen to be also the most ethical path one can take. I’m speaking with Ivanka Vávrová, healthy lifestyle coach, school agent and a cookbook author.
Hi Ivanka. Thank you for finding time to talk to #GoEthic. Please introduce yourself to our readers and tell us where you from and what you do.
Hi Martynka, my pleasure. I am 37 years old Silesian (north Morava), I’ve studied philosophy and made a master thesis in Social Science and English.
Originally I was a high school teacher but very soon after university I moved to Prague and started working in private education.
Today I run lovely project called Your Life Coach – Vegan Guide. I do therapies, that is why I mentioned my education, I believe it gave me a lot to help people.
You are a coach and the author of the cookbook “Vegan Recipes”. Tell us a bit more about what you do professionally.
I am the founder of project School Agent. It’s my big hobby, and at the same time it’s a job that feeds me and allows me to have free time to study and teach my other hobby connected to the healthy lifestyle: food, work out, mental exercise.
The Vegan Recipes book is rooted in the story with my mom. She got serious cancer and first thing we decided to do was getting rid of animal proteins – meat, dairy, eggs. Which made me research the recipes, and what to cook for her, to keep her well fed and healthy at the same time.
All recipes are my original texts and photos. It is authentic piece made by two amazing people, me and my designer Lukas who supports all I do. This is why I love it so much.The book came from deep of my heart.
Seems like you transformed a personal tragedy into something positive and applicable for others. Can you share with us how is your mother doing today?
It had a happy end so I would not call it tragedy but lesson. I believe all bad is good for something.
Today mom is doing great, looks younger, has a lot of energy and always good mood. She stayed on plant-based diet as well as her boyfriend who had strong diabetes. All her tests and results are great thanks to God and he enjoys the veggie diet as well.
Your second book is coming out soon. Is it going to be a second edition or a second volume? Can you tell us the premiere date?
If only it could be done by Christmas (smiling). But I think I need to make ten more recipes which might be ready in about one month.
I need ideas, inspiration, because I prefer bringing something new rather than just copying existing recipes.
While preparing the second cook book I felt more free in using new spices and combine tastes, so I let myself go be more creative. It is also following the seasons, so there will be soups that warms up, or menu for all family for winter days. I love cooked food so you hardly find raw stuff. On the other side my food obviously satisfies all ages and genders (laughing).
Let’s just say me and my designer Lukas will do our best to bring the second book by Easter. He needs time to publish it and that takes a lot of time and energy. Then waiting for printing and so on.
Have you always wanted to become Vegan Coach? How did you get there?
(Laughing) Yes and no. My grandparents taught me to love not just people but also animals and nature.
I grew up in mountains with forest, clear water and singing birds. My grandpa was a forester and taught me about all kinds of birds, showed me deer coming to eat. My grandma was a doctor, and she was always telling me: Do not use pills. Herbs and natural medicaments are more powerful and less harmful.
Seems like I have been prepared for this Vegan Coach roll all my life. My education gave me ten semesters of Philosophy and Psychology which brought me deeper understanding of what soul, universe and energy is.
All my life experiences has built the fundamentals for what I know and believe today. But to be honest from the very early childhood I am aware of my special power. I can feel what people starve from inside, I see their blocks. I can help them finding the inner wounds, heal them and renew their self-love.
So would you say that your super power is self awareness?
Well, that will be really hard to explain. It is something like strong empathy. I am not sure I can find words to describe it, sorry.
How long has it bee, when did you become vegan?
4th year. Yes 3,5 years now I think.
Why have you decided to become vegan?
Serious intestines sickness and broken part of it plus parasites eating me alive, terrible experience.
When I was a child I refused to eat any animal killed in garden. My mom had to declare that the chicken was bought in a shop. So I had some barriers, but when I grew up I became obsessed by meat.
One day my body collapsed, my mom got cancer and I had to face a decision. In just one week I became vegan to heal myself and my beloved mom too.
Today we are both healthy, strong and powerful ladies. I decided for health reasons and now I have all possible reasons to stay vegan forever.
How do you remember your transition to vegan diet? Was it hard? Was is a logistic challenge?
It was so fast. My intestines collapsed and all doctor suggested was serious operation with possible negative side effects. Cutting my body was big NO for me, my soul screamed NO WAY.
I followed an advice of a friend who is yoga student. First I had a week on plant juice. After a while I couldn’t eat anything that smelled like animal based, no matter was it meat, milk or eggs. My body totally refused to consume it, so I became vegan.
I became crazy for cooking plant-based and stop thinking of animal products in food. It was a challenge to cook without eggs and other animal ingredients.
It was not easy, nor hard, it’s all about discipline and decisions. I am very stubborn once I decide something. As a Sagittarius I go for it no matter what.
To be honest one of best decisions in my life was to become vegan.
I know that for you this lifestyle isn’t only about nutrition and cooking. Can you tell us how does veganism reflect in all the other aspects of your life?
It gave me so much self-reflection and opened my heart. I became fascinated with what happens with your body and mind when you stop eating dead friends and get full of this deep compassion. Life changing experience.
Some friends leave, because they can not stand what you eat or don’t eat. You meet new friends who are on the same cloud like you. But not necessarily vegans, there are many vegans I have nothing to talk about.
But yes, your mind opens and you attract people like you. Usually you realize your soul is the one who directs you so you follow it. You find pure love to yourself and all living creatures around.
Even your book is vegan?
Lukas says so.
What is your definition of a success?
It is when you and everyone around is healthy and happy. I became successful when I made projects where all sides are winning. Universe just loves these kind of projects and supports them a lot.
What would you recommend to people who are considering starting a similar journey? Or to the ones that are already doing it, but without an ethical fundamentals?
I recommend a good guide, someone with a heart and experience, like me of course (laughing).
It is important to have a good balanced menu, recipes, to know what to cook not to become bored. To understand what exactly you are doing and why.
Cross over your fears, do not put too much weight on what people think or say. It is your life, your body and your decision.
Can you share your plans for future with us?
I plan opening my own studio where people come for therapies, cooking lessons and where my cooperating coaches and trainers teach my beloved Yoga, Pilates and more work- outs.
Place where impressive people come and take meditation lessons. Where clients can buy fresh, top quality Barley and Chlorella Green Ways which I love, use daily and distribute directly from the producer.
I hope this studio will move to the sea resort, where we all enjoy sun, water, work-outs, meditations, fresh veggies as snacks and cooking lessons. We will have a nice holiday where we cook our plant-based lunches and dinners together so when you come home you are perfectly instructed into vegan life (menu, recipes)
Finger cross for you achieving all those goals as soon as possible. We wish you best of luck in your further steps. Thank you kindly for the interview.
I do thank you very much. God bless you dear and all the readers.