Facilitator Interview: Sarah Pfitzner of Sydney / London
Who are you?
Wow, that’s a big question and one I could answer on many levels. Essentially I’m a soul having a human experience, seeking to be the best I can be in order to give the unique gifts I have to share. I’m a daughter, a sister, a friend. I’m a teacher, currently of Pilates, mindfulness and meditation and an ELM facilitator and trainer. I am and always will be a student. I’m a person born into a position of privilege in this life and I care deeply about inequality and injustice and want to effect change for the better in any way I can. Oh, and I crazy-love cats.
Tell us your finding ELM story
ELM found me. When I saw Melody’s workshop advertised at Triyoga London, it took me all of 5 seconds to hit the ‘I’m in’ button. It didn’t feel like a choice.
I was raised in a family dedicated to the service of others, one seeking to uphold fairness and equality and these are things I hold dear. My awareness of social injustices has grown over the years (and continues to), and gender inequality and societal norms that link a woman’s worth with her appearance are two things especially strong on my radar. I’ve long felt and needed a deep connection with ‘sisterhood’.
I thought that I had a relatively healthy relationship with my appearance. Intellectually, I ‘knew’ that it didn’t define me and yet I still experienced a voice in my head that would focus on physical ‘flaws’ and ‘not good enoughs’. I dieted as a teenager, despite not needing to, and regularly compared my body with others. I read lots of ‘self-help’ books, seeking to be ‘better/happier/more/other’ than I was.
In 2005, at the age of 34, I developed a severe and chronic illness which also affected how I looked. My appearance changed a lot and virtually overnight and I was intrigued to find that my overriding experience of this was deep shame and feelings of unworthiness. Through this and over the next 4 years of recovery, I began to really explore important questions around self worth and started the process of finding love and compassion for myself. In time I began sharing this with others and working toward enabling them to do the same. And then ELM found me…
How do you EMBODY LOVE?
I embody love by seeking to connect with what integrity means for me; asking if my thoughts, actions and behaviors are in alignment with my values as I move through situations. I embody love by feeding myself with meditation, good sleep and rest, nourishing food, compassionate exercise, the company of loved ones, big laughter sessions, education for my mind and food for my heart and soul so that I can best give to others. I embody love by remembering that everyone is doing the best that they know how in each moment, including myself.
What contribution are you making to the world?
I’m contributing my time, dedicated to those I love and to the service of others. I’m contributing my passion for justice, equality and the welfare of all beings and for our planet. I’m contributing my commitment to join with others in seeking to effect positive change in the world and a commitment to continue to learn and to grow. I’m contributing my ‘story’ which gives me a unique set of experiences from which I can share, offer compassion, insight and empathy. I’m contributing my sense of humor, a listening-ear and the grounding energy which flows through me. I’m contributing the intellect I was born with and the skills I’ve acquired, offering both towards meaningful ends. I’m contributing my ability trust, to surrender and my faith that there is goodness in all.
Sarah Pfitzner is Facilitator and Trainer at Embody Love Movement, Co-Owner at I Love Pilates and Owner at fluidmotionpilates. Movement, sport and exercise are in Sarah’s DNA. From dancing to playing netball at state level she has always been passionate about the power our bodies hold. However it was through a severe life-changing illness that Sarah discovered and fell in love with Pilates. She experienced firsthand just how powerful and transformative Pilates can be and wanted to share this gift with others. Her training with Body Control Pilates began in 2008 and she continues to expand her knowledge with further training each year. Her studies in Pilates, health, nutrition, NLP, psychology and mindfulness all play an integral role in her goal to empower others to be the best version of themselves possible.