Be your own best advocate. Don’t let your mind dwell on the cookie you ate, let it rejoice in the yoga, veggies and sleep you had. Our minds can only process one thing at a time and it believes everything we tell it. Speak sweetly and positively to yourself like you would your child, friend or parents.
As a part of my series about the women in wellness, I had the pleasure of interviewing Sue Glasscock, Co-Founder and Chief Creative Director of The Ranch, a healthy lifestyle company known for results-oriented fitness and wellness programs. Sue founded The Ranch with her husband Alex, opening their first location in Malibu in 2010, and since expanded the brand to include additional locations, a pop-up program in the Italian Dolomites, products and a cookbook. Sue oversees all aspects of the guest experience outside of the program itself, including the interior design of all rooms and common areas, curation of amenities and the landscape design throughout the property including the onsite organic garden. She also spearheaded the launch of The Ranch’s line of clean beauty products, which uses ingredients sourced directly from the garden. Within 10 years, The Ranch has become a top wellness destination winning a series of awards and accolades including annual recognition on Travel + Leisure’s World’s Best List of Domestic Spas and Conde Nast Traveler’s Readers’ Choice Awards.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! What is your “backstory”?
Thank you for having me! Alex and I founded The Ranch as a way to change people’s lives by sharing our combined passions for health, wellness, nature and design.
I’ve always had a love for the outdoors and physical activity, which is what brought me to Los Angeles. As a frequent marathon runner, I began consulting and mentoring others on health and wellness practices. Being able to help people make impactful changes in their own lives is something that is truly inspiring and what The Ranch is really all about.
Prior to The Ranch, I had my own landscape design business specializing in organic, sustainable vegetable garden design. As I gained experience in interior design as well, I loved creating spaces that seamlessly blend the design of indoor and outdoor living spaces, which is such a hallmark of California style. This too has shaped The Ranch’s refined, yet understated interiors, the infusion of nature throughout the property and our certified organic garden that provides the food for our program.
Can you share your top three “lifestyle tweaks” that you believe will help support people’s journey towards better wellbeing?
1. Spend time in nature each and every day. It’s easy to get caught up in the latest “trendy” solutions whether it’s an app, diet, pill, or laser. Most of us look for the quick fix, so if that is you, look no further than nature. The incredible abilities of nature to heal and support the mind and body includes:
-Improving performance on creative and problem-solving tasks
-Lowering mental distress and incidence of death and disease
-Enhancing educational performance
-Decreasing blood pressure, heart rate and level of stress hormones
-Increasing short-term memory and other attention skills
2. Take 10 minutes a day to shut out all the extra “noise.” We get bombarded by continual texts, emails, tweets et al. Our minds, bodies and souls are not meant for this continued assault. It can lead to overstimulation, exhaustion and just plain irritation.
It’s proven that meditation, prayer or just plain being aware of your breath for 10 minutes each day helps alleviate the above. Put down your phone, shut your computer and take 10 minutes a day to calm your mind. Bonus points if you combine this with tip 1 and spend these precious moments in nature!
3. Be your own best advocate. Don’t let your mind dwell on the cookie you ate, let it rejoice in the yoga, veggies and sleep you had. Our minds can only process one thing at a time and it believes everything we tell it. Speak sweetly and positively to yourself like you would your child, friend or parents.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started your career?
It’s all been interesting! Every day brings new challenges, insights, highs and lows in my mind all of it is interesting and part of my personal and business growth.
Can you share a story about the biggest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?
I don’t believe in mistakes. I believe everything that happens has a purpose for us to grow and expand. We have been taught to label things good and bad which is purely perception; is the glass half full or empty?
When it comes to health and wellness, how is the work you are doing helping to make a bigger impact in the world?
I’ve always been mindful of my personal and the company’s impact on the world. Because nature is such a core element of our program, we want to make sure that everyone who experiences The Ranch leaves with tools that not only benefit themselves, but also the people and things around them.
We find coaching, mentoring and supporting our guests on how to live a truly sustainable lifestyle at a personal level has a lasting impact. They gain a deeper understanding of the concept, how it feels and how they can make meaningful contributions to the practice in their own lives. We inspire them to make the seemingly small but significant changes in and to their lives and how they live each and every day.
As a company we are also deeply devoted to implementing sustainable practices throughout the property and community, including an onsite tertiary wastewater treatment plant that allows us to reuse 100% of our grey water and supporting the maintenance and clean-up of our local public trails and beaches. Most notably, our exclusively plant-based menu requires less land, water and energy to produce, with the majority of our ingredients coming from our onsite organic garden. Free from the use of synthetic pesticides, our garden also limits the need for large quantities of food to be transported to the program. Each year, our plant-conscious diet saves nearly 140,000 pounds of CO2 emissions, 8 million gallons of water, and thousands of animals. Additionally, we have a system of bee colonies on property that produce around 500 pounds of honey each year.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
Yes, my husband and Co-Founder Alex. We’ve been together 31 years and he has been a constant pillar of support and inspiration.
If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of wellness to the most amount of people, what would that be?
Being kind to yourself. If we could always be kind to ourselves and not judge ourselves negatively, we would instantly be happier. When we are happy, we make good choices for ourselves.
What is your “3 Things I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Started” and why?
I learn best by “doing” and observing.
Do you have a “girl-crush” in this industry? If you could take one person to brunch, who would it be? (Let another “woman in wellness” know that you respect her as a teacher and guide! )
Yes, Lisa Boolootian who is The Ranch Director of Operations. She embodies wellness in mind, body and spirit. What most moves me is her devotion to helping others on a daily basis to improve their wellness. I’ve watched her change thousands of lives over the years of both staff and guests. It comes directly from her heart!!!
Sustainability, veganism, mental health and environmental changes are big topics at the moment. Which one of these causes is dearest to you, and why?
Sustainability is the most important to me for people and the planet. If we don’t have sustainability, we and the planet won’t survive.
What is the best way our readers can follow you on social media?
Thank you for all of these great insights!