A Day in the Life of a Psychotherapist and Wellness Coach

Hi there! I’m Risha London Nathan. I’m a licensed psychotherapist and wellness/lifestyle coach based in NYC. I see clients in my office in Flatiron area and also work with people remotely through video and phone sessions. I see individuals and couples for all sorts of issues related to find a way to a healthier and happier life! Some of the issues that come up frequently are anxiety, low self-worth/self-esteem, depression, anger and communication barriers, dating/ghosting/relationship struggles, perfectionism, substance use, difficulty regulating emotions, and navigating life changes.

I strongly believe that it’s important to look at the whole picture when treating someone, so that’s why I incorporate health and wellness into my sessions as much as people want. I believe that what’s going on in one part of your body has an impact on all parts, and it’s important to treat the whole body. When people are anxious or stressed all the time, it’s important to look at diet and lifestyle as well as how they’re communicating because all these things play an equal part. If someone is feeling physically tired all the time, this may impact their ability to emotionally connect with partners, or even have energy for dating.

My own health journey is ongoing. I struggled for years with loneliness, sadness, depression, relationship and dating struggles, as well as all sorts of digestive issues and was diagnosed with Lyme disease about six years ago. It became my passion to help people through all things physical and emotional and to offer a safe and kind space for growth and happiness. I believe that we are all always a work in progress and the kinder we can be to ourselves, the more we will thrive and connect with others. One of the best parts of being based in NYC is that I’ve had clients from all walks of life and from all over the world. I feel privileged to work with all of them!

My days are all a bit different, so I’ll give a little bit of an idea of what an office day looks like, vs. a work from home day.

5:45 a.m. – Wake and work on getting out the door by 6:30/6:45ish. Office days are generally really early for me. I have 8 a.m. clients on T/W/Th, so I try to get to my office by 7:30 a.m.

6:45 a.m. – Trek to train. Generally listen to some music, a podcast or an audiobook! This helps me to engage a little bit in the start of my day. The walk to the train is a bit long for me, but it’s good to get a little movement in, since I don’t get to workout on my office days.

7:05 a.m. – Get on train from BK to NYC

7:30/7:40 a.m. – Arrive at office in Flatiron area

7:45 a.m. – I’ll make some tea or coffee, but try to limit caffeine use. I’m generally not a morning eater (takes me a while to be hungry) but if I’m hungry I’ll eat something small. Otherwise, I just focus on beverages. Pee! I don’t always get lots of bathroom breaks, so I make sure to get one in ahead of clients. Quickly check emails/voicemails and respond as necessary.

8 a.m. – Welcome first client. I’m very much a morning person, so I’m certainly my freshest at this time. I generally have client sessions back to back from 8-to 1/1:30pm on my office days.

1:30 p.m. –  Lunch! I’ll often grab lunch with a friend or colleague. I’m lucky to be in Flatiron, where there are lots of good options if I don’t bring my lunch. I also use this time to hydrate! If it’s a nice, sunny day, I’ll grab some lunch and sit at Madison Sq. Park to get a little sunshine. My general go-to lunch spots are Inday, Sweet Green, Little Beet, and La Pecora Bianca. I try to eat foods that will keep me energized for the rest of my day.

3 p.m. – Back to the office. Emails/paperwork.

4–8:30/9 p.m.  More client sessions.

p.m.  Train home!

9:45 p.m.  Easy snack and bed if I have another early morning, or I’ll watch a show if I’m not totally exhausted. I like to have a bit of quiet time after being engaged in conversation for a lot of the day.

10/11 p.m. – Bedtime! I put my phone on “do not disturb,” wash up and brush teeth, take some supplements, and it’s bedtime for me!

What I do on my non-office days: No set schedules!

-Workout (I have ClassPass and enjoy trying all types of workouts when I have energy.) My energy level is a constant battle for me, so I try to really listen to my body.

-Make sure to get a little extra rest after my long office days.

-Do self-care. I’m a very, very low-maintenance person, but once in a while I’ll do an infrared sauna, facial, or cryotherapy. I love trying new stuff, but also stick to a budget.

-Go to farmer’s markets/shops and cooking. I eat as locally/organically/sustainable as I can and enjoy cooking. Fall and winter soups are common!

-Read. I’m always reading something related to work/self-help.

-See friends/biz work/networking/workshops and classes. I try to get out there and connect!

-Do some remote sessions as needed.

-Work on biz/social media stuff!

-Keep a fairly early bedtime on these days as well, unless there’s a special event going on in the evening.

I love my office days filled with clients, but my “off” days are my favorites because I get to really recharge and do all the other things.

Remember to take care of yourself first. It is how you are your best self for everyone else. I believe that almost everything has a resolution if we face it with a healthy and rational mind. That means taking care of yourself physically and emotionally and making sure that you’re actively communicating well every day!