Circle of Life Exercise

If you’re looking to make changes in your life, it’s helpful to first bring awareness to areas that are currently out of balance and then devise a plan to course-correct. Below is an effective and simple tool called the Circle of Life that can assist on your wellness journey. It was created by the health coaching school I attended, New York City’s Institute for Integrative Nutrition.

One of IIN’s key philosophies is that while it’s important to eat whole and healing foods, nutrition is only a part of holistic health. IIN refer to the other parts as “primary foods,” which include joy, spirituality, creativity, finances, career, education, physical activity, home cooking, home environment, relationships and social life.


Food is more than what you find on your plate. Healthy relationships, regular physical activity, a fulfilling career and a spiritual practice can fill your soul and satisfy your hunger for life. When primary food is balanced and satiated, your life feeds you, making what you eat secondary.

It simply explained that our diet and therefore health is quite literally controlled by Primary Foods (relationships, career, physical activity, spirituality, finance, confidence to name some). So, if we’re in a negative relationship or if we hate our job, we’re more inclined to eat unhealthily.

Use the Circle of Life (download + print below) so you can use it to work out what Primary Foods are out of balance or need more attention. I like to do this exercise at least once a month to make sure I'm on track with my health and happiness. I use this all the time with my clients to set goals, re-evaluate and maintain focus.

circle of life.
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After taking 3-5 minutes to complete your Circle of Life, here are some follow-up questions you can ask yourself:

– Are there any surprises for you? – How do you feel about life as you look at your Circle of Life? – Which of these elements would you most like to improve? – How could you make space for these changes? – What help from others might you need? – What would make it a better circle? – What would a balanced circle look like to you?

To dive deeper into this I'd like to invite you to book a consultation with me. We can go over this together and we can figure out the best plan of action for you to get you closer to your goals.


Circles represent the full circle of our lives – our whole life and the full spectrum of our being. Additionally, circles represent nature’s recurring cycles: the days, seasons and years of our lives. Finally, the circle is a power symbol in all original cultures that represents connection with the entire natural world, the universe. Sacred mandalas, the medicine wheel, the Chinese Yin/Yang symbol as well as the horizon, the planet earth, the solar system and the expanse of the heavens are all circles.