Meet Rhyena

Branches of Flowers

A certified Functional Medicine Coach & End of Life Doula

 

As a coach, I provide compassionate support through life transitions, helping you navigate towards a renewed sense of your own health and wellness, an exciting design for your Third Act of life (age 50+), or a gentle plan for your final journey at the end of life.

My life-long adventure with holistic nutrition, health and healing began at age 14, when I started meditating, practicing yoga and following a mainly plant-based diet. Over the years I’ve been engaged in the performing and visual arts, the healing arts, the nonprofit and public sectors, and academia. I worked as an artist, massage therapist, documentary filmmaker, arts administrator and adjunct faculty. As I approached my own retirement, I worked with a coach to design my own Third Act and it was absolutely life-changing.

I first became a certified Health and Wellness Functional Medicine coach and got re-involved with hospice work. While serving as a hospice volunteer, working directly with patients and in community outreach, I designed my own End of Life plan.

Then I became an End of Life doula and am now committed to helping others achieve the good health, calm, clarity and sense of purpose that we all want and need. I also write on these topics for my blog and on Medium, and volunteer as a crisis counselor for the national Crisis Text Line.

I view coaching as a means to discovery and empowerment. It provides tools for finding and fulfilling your best life.  For more on the science of how coaching works, emotionally and physiologically, and the many ways it may help you, see:  About Coaching?

My Journey to Health and Wellness

On my own health journey, I suffered for many years from four autoimmune illnesses, including interstitial cystitis, Epstein-Barr, systemic candidiasis, and Hashimoto’s thyroid disease which was misdiagnosed for 25 years. I also struggled with chronic back pain, severe headaches, asthma, chronic digestive issues, severe PMS, hormonal and adrenal imbalances, heavy metal toxicity, debilitating TMJ and carpal tunnel syndrome. I dealt with anxiety, depression, disordered eating and recovery from childhood emotional trauma. 

I persevered and cured myself through holistic health modalities. I‘ve learned that dogged perseverance, openness to experimentation, trusting my body and intuition, continual research and working with talented healing arts professionals are the keys to the vastly improved health I enjoy today.

 

I know that chronic pain, inflammation and disease are not inevitable.  All that I’ve learned along the way is what I hope to share with you.  Whatever health challenges you face, you too can find healing and improved wellness. 

I am a Functional Medicine Certified Health Coach (FMCHC.) I graduated in 2019 from the Functional Medicine Coaching Academy and passed my board exams administered by the National Board of Health and Wellness Coaches (NBHWC). 

I am excited to be part of the integrated medicine movement that is solving people’s chronic health problems, addressing autoimmune disease, and disrupting the healthcare industry. I use my training in Functional Medicine and decades of study of holistic health to help provide you with tools of self-empowerment. Honoring your personal history and future dreams, I collaborate with you to design a wellness path forward that resonates with you.

My Third Act

As life spans increase, many of us will be fortunate enough to have the gift of longevity,  after decades of active and hectic ‘doing’ including employment and career growth, child-rearing and running a home, managing financial needs and endless ‘to-do’ lists - a life of external busy-ness and taking care of others. 

Your future holds opportunities for renewal and purpose, reviving or creating new dreams and goals 

beyond a simple “bucket list”. You can embark on a journey to plan, shape and design your precious Third Act of life.

Several years before my retirement from the hectic world of 70 hour work weeks, long commutes and active caring for my family, I worked with a coach to design the Third Act of my life. The process was profound, fully uncovering my passions and giving me a new mission and direction. 

I created discernment tools for shaping my future and they were amazing! The actual transition into my Third Act has been smooth and rewarding. Now, I have revamped these tools for my clients and hope to share them with you.

My End of Life Plan

 

As a teenager I became intrigued by and immersed in Eastern philosophy and spirituality, and in death and dying in particular. I was a hospice volunteer earlier in life and resumed this work after my children were grown. I love sitting bedside with people at this most sacred time, and meeting their loved ones.

As an End of Life Doula, I hold the space as you tap into your own agency in the process of determining what is most important to you while you are both living and dying. My role is one of compassionate support and information sharing, should you wish to consciously plan your death. There are many meaningful tools available to you such as the creation of ethical wills, life review letters, legacy planning, obituary writing, and green alternatives to traditional burials.

 

​I am influenced by the growing, grassroots movements of Conscious Dying and Positive Death. My approach to end of life planning and doula work is to hold the space with compassion and acceptance, to help the dying person realize the death they envisioned. 

 

For more on my philosophy, please see:  My philosophy on end of life. For more End of Life resources, please go to the Resources Page.

I am a professional End of Life Doula, certified by the University of Vermont’s Lasher School of Medicine in 2020.  I also facilitate group outreach events like Death Cafes, Death Over Dinner events, and workshops that provide instruction in completing Advanced Care Directives.

Welcome All

I feel very strongly and wish to expressly state that clients of any color, race, class, gender, sexual orientation, and physical and mental ability are very welcome and all will be treated with dignity and respect.

Third Act Coaching

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office: San Francisco Bay Area       rhyhalpern@thirdactcoaching.org

www.thirdactcoaching.org

(650) 517-3850