We had the good fortune of connecting with Nasira Cooley and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Nasira, how has your perspective on work-life balance evolved over time?
I am a driven person and have perfectionist tendencies. I tend to keep working until the work is done, and this approach sometimes leads to an unbalanced lifestyle where I find little to no time to relax and enjoy a calm moment. I’ve learned I am happiest when my life is well balanced between family, work, exercise, sleep, and hobbies. Since becoming a mother in February 2020, I’ve discovered that a tiny new family member can dramatically offset this equilibrium as the baby quickly becomes the focus of all a parent’s time and energy! I know that my daughter is the most important investment of my time, however, I am a better mother when I maintain a sense of self and balance. Trying to work while simultaneously managing a household and caring for an infant leads to divided attention, mediocre outcomes, and stress. Arranging my schedule in a way that allows me to commit specific hours of the day to work is critical to maintaining work-life balance. I have coordinated help from my parents and husband to care for my daughter so that I am able to focus on my career endeavors a few days each week. This allows me to dedicate myself fully to my daughter’s care and give her my best energy and attitude when I am blessed to have time with her. I will never get these years back and I plan to make the most of each day.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I was drawn to public health and nutrition as a result of my diverse background in science, fine arts, and fitness. I believe that nutrition is a key component of overall health, contributing to physical, intellectual, and spiritual well-being. I am currently an adjunct faculty member at Chapman University, a private practice registered dietitian, and post-doctoral researcher. I also serve as the Nutrition Educator for Chapman University Department of Dance and the ABT Gillespe School at Segerstrom Center for the Arts. I am a former classical ballet dancer and my dance training instilled great discipline and work ethic that continues to drive my success as a health professional. Making the transition from an aspiring professional ballet dancer to a graduate student in the sciences forced me to consider the basis of my identity and goals and redefine a balanced life for myself.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
During the pandemic era, our options would be far more limited. Under these circumstances, I would plan a local hike, perhaps Bommer Canyon, followed by an outdoor picnic. I would include a trip to the beach, of course. To be honest, I don’t go out much as the mother of an nine-month-old, so I’m not sure I would be the most exciting hostess for my friend!

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My husband, Michael Cooley, is my partner in life and parenting. My parents are also an integral part of facilitating my career as a working mother.

Website: www.healthenpointe.com
Instagram: @health_enpointe
Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/nasira-burkholder-cooley-drph-rdn-7960ab1a/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/healthenpointe

Image Credits
Samantha Kofford Photography (headshot)

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutLA is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.