Six-stone weight loss led to my dream job

In our My Career feature, we talk to Sarah Burke, Slimming World Consultant
Six-stone weight loss led to my dream job
Sarah Burke

Name: Sarah Burke

Age: 26

Lives: Cork city

Job title: Slimming World Consultant

Salary bracket: Nothing ventured, nothing gained, ask me in a year’s time.

Education background: Leaving Certificate, North Presentation Farranree.

Hobbies: Walking, grocery shopping — it takes me about two hours (typical Slimming World consultant), being mom to my gorgeous baby son Luke.

Describe your job in five words: Inspiring, fulfilling, boundless, encouraging, motivating.

Describe yourself in five words: Friendly, content, excited, positive and helpful.

Personality needed for this kind of work? Outgoing and hardworking with a soul full of determination.

How long are you doing this job? Just starting out, although I did similar enough work through my blog for two and a half years, Sarah’s fatnflab2fitnfab weight loss journey, so it is second nature to me.

How did you get this job? After trying every diet under the sun with nothing working, I finally discovered the gym and healthy eating, losing nearly four stone. But after a while I just needed a life that wasn’t off a sheet or a certain amount of foods that didn’t require me working out. I needed choices, guilt-free choices enabling me to live a normal life yet still shed pounds. After being a dedicated food optimising member at Slimming World, I got my job through an opportunities event with the company.

Do you need particular qualifications/experience? None, just a loving personality with a drive within to help others succeed in achieving their dream weight with no effort, only commitmemt.

Describe an average day/night/shift at work: Running two Slimming World classes. An average group will consist of welcoming new members and having a new member talk. Introducing them to the plan, whilst regular members pay and weigh. Afterwards we all sit together in group to discuss our week past and our week ahead. Giving advice and support to keep us all on plan.

How many hours do you work a week? Including work outside the group — such as food diaries and supporting members midweek — maybe about 15 to 20 hours all in all to ensure the highest level of support is given to each member who needs it.

What do you wear to work? Week to week it differs. Usually it will be tights and a skirt with a top, or a dress and tights.

Is your industry male or female dominated? Very much a mix of genders amongst consultants over UK and Ireland.

Does this affect you in any particular way? No, I believe in gender equality.

Is your job stressful? How? Rate it on a scale of 1-10: No, because I have been doing similar enough work on the blog for so long but when you are trying to do everything 100% as I’m a perfectionist (well, I try) it can be. Maybe a three or four at a stretch. Come back in six months time and I will tell you then.

Do you work with others on or your own? I work on my own but I have a social team of members to help out on the night.

When do you plan to retire or give up working? As long as I can keep doing what I love, I don’t think I will want to give up. Knowing that I am making a difference is such an amazing feeling.

Best bits: Watching the Slimming World Plan and my support, but mainly the group’s support changes lives.

Another highlight is seeing friendships blossom within the group.

Worst bits: Not being able to help those who haven’t realised they need the support of a group, that’s where the support and learning is.

Advice to those who want your job? If you love Slimming World, love helping others, get yourself to an opportunity event.

Any other comments? I never once believed I’d get where I am today, nor did I believe in the Slimming World plan. I remember stating to my consultant, the gorgeous Lorraine, that I was “sceptical” of the plan. I asked her how could it work when I walked through her group doors in The Glen. Within three months I had lost two stone. After falling pregnant I didn’t think I’d be able to keep the weight off. It was then I learned just how amazing Slimming World is. I gained two stone during my pregnancy. Nineteen weeks post baby I was down two stone, four pounds. I returned to the group after six weeks. It’s an amazing, encouraging environment to attend, not only as a member but now as a consultant.

To think my weightloss journey, losing nearly six stone, has led me to a career I love doing is, without a shadow of a doubt, lying within the bracket “everything happens for a reason.”

Slimming World runs every Tuesday in The Commons Inn at 5.30pm and 7.30pm.

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