BIG PICTURE CORPORATE WELLNESS
"You did a fantastic job at unpacking a very complex and tricky subject and made it very understandable and meaningful to myself and I’m sure everyone else in the audience.
I want to extend a very heartfelt thank-you and appreciation from all of us for sharing your time and expertise with us today, it was very powerful and insightful message indeed!"
Health & Safety Coordinator
Sonia Funk is a Corporate Wellness Strategist, Speaker, Coach and Nutritional Therapist.
She has travelled the world as both student and teacher, working and living in New York, Toronto, Ottawa, London, The Middle East and Winnipeg. Her super-powers include outrageous common sense and a willingness to ask the hard questions, which allow for easier answers. Sonia’s questions cut through all the misinformation, fads and cliches around wellness and mental health. She gives her audience courage to find a better question that can help them understand the real reasons why they are struggling. With this awareness and the tools she provides, real change for wellbeing becomes possible.
Her unique collaborative healthcare events in her community, and her partnership with the local Co-op Grocery stores, have seen her in the media regularly. Over the years she naturally evolved into a corporate speaker, keynoting the City of Morden’s Mental Health Week in 2019 and speaking on brain health and nutritional psychiatry at Safety Service Manitoba’s conference in early 2020. When the pandemic hit, her work went online, presenting and keynoting for Workplace Safety & Prevention Services in Ontario, Maple Reinders, Safeopedia, STEP Houston Chapter and Small Giants Community, to name a few. More recently, back to in person, she was the keynote for the Association of Canadian Financial Officers in Winnipeg and Maanaw Seva's Matter of Mind Conference in Edmonton. Sonia belongs to the Speakers Bureau of Canada.
Sonia’s genius lies in her insightful and strategic telling of the human story behind the issue at hand. Sonia is a heart-centered and funny professional that always brings the big picture to the table. Effortlessly flooding the room with the feeling of empathy and non-judgement, she invites a perception shift in the participants. To her, this is the fundamental first step to lift the apathy and fear that keeps people stuck. Sonia’s presentations are psychologically crafted in a way that allow her to effectively communicate life changing information and awareness. Her experience as an effective coach and therapist translates into her ability to relay useful tools and tips, that are relevant to everyone.
Sonia is one of those speakers, trainers and consultants that is truly willing to jump right into the collective struggle and help people sort it out.
A new way to assess risk
(presentation or 1/2 day workshop)
In “The Biology of Safety,” Sonia takes research and insights from the “Father of Stress” himself, Hans Selye, into the context of safety.
Hans Selye, is most known for his description of "General Adaptation Syndrome." This syndrome speaks to the physical impact of stress on the body, the breakdown of specific body systems and how that breakdown leads to illness.
By the end of this presentation the audience will have a deep understanding of
*how daily stress and lifestyle choices impact our body and brain function
*how that function alters our neurotransmitters & hormones
*how those imbalanced chemicals in the body have a direct impact on safety.
Sonia walks through an easy to understand explanation of how a chronic stress response (which 2020 activated), a taxed nervous system (everyone at this point), poorly regulated blood sugar (sugar and coffee to cope), fluctuating blood pressure (neurotransmitters produced by stress), can set a person up for poor decisions and accidents. To perfect the story of this biological brain-fog storm, Sonia then touches on how past trauma, stuck in the brain, and an upset digestive system, send mixed messages to the brain, making it even more dangerous.
Educating employees on how this acts out in their daily lives could potentially save as many lives as a hardhat. In addition, educating leaders on biological red flags to watch for, will help them assess a whole new dimension of risk.
Your people are sick and tired of being sick and tired. When you give them the right information, in an empathetic and humorous way, they will finally hear it.
“In a day and age when your employees are going to be working for you longer than you ever meant for them to, and with more health conditions than we have ever seen before, this kind of intervention is also the prevention you are looking for.”
It's not your fault
Mental Health Keynote or Workshop
We are all surrounded by triggers, instigators and compounders of stress, anxiety and depression in our daily lives. They are everywhere. They are in the news, on our dinner plates, in our morning mugs, in our homes, at school, on the road, at work, in our email. Some of the most powerful ones shine out to us from our phones and are hidden within our own digestive tract and immune system. They lurk behind hormonal imbalances in our bodies. They hide between dysfunctional relationships. The can be camouflaged by “positive thinking” that is based in avoidance – but they can also be magnified by “negative thinking” that is not constructive.
Due to our personal histories, our genes and our environment, some of us are more susceptible to the heavy load that all of these factors place on our minds and our bodies carry every day. The factors Sonia sheds light on in this keynote are stress, food, our microbiome, social media & phones and relationships. In true Sonia style, she does it in a way that leaves you with the most incredible relief: That"it's not your fault" And that you can actually do something about it.
Keynote Morden Mental Health Week 2019
Photo courtesy of L. Stelmach
The Winkler-Morden Voice
Burnout: The Fire is Real
“New research shows that more than one-third of all working Canadians are feeling burned out.” Canada Life, 2022
Burnout is complex, impacting every part of who we are and how we live and work.
So what is it exactly? How does it correlate to Mental Health? What are the physical health implications? How do I know I have it? How do I stop it or heal it?
Sonia likes to bring simplicity to complicated problems. She has taken this highly misunderstood & speculated state of humanity and distilled it down into a cause and effect that makes sense. A highlight in this learning is conceptualizing prevention and intervention as the same thing in the realm of burnout.
In this session Sonia will ease self-blame by demonstrating:
*how the events in our lives and the world we live in, naturally
lead us towards burnout
*a simple yet revelatory understanding of the basic biology
behind all the symptoms and feelings involved and what they mean
*the role of healthy personal boundaries (or lack thereof)
Tying it all together she then gives the audience a practical framework for:
*Avoiding the Hard No (slowing down pending burnout)
*Healing the Hard No (recovery if you are already there)
Executive Leadership Training
The Biology of
Cost & ROI
Addressing the rising costs of benefits, stress leave, etc, in a way that creates a tangible ROI, has become essential for corporate survival.
Sonia is highly skilled at shifting the fulcrum of these old, heavy problems, to a place of lighter effort. She believes that we have been asking the wrong questions, and therefore, it is simply better questions that will will open the door to better answers. In this session Sonia will take the humanity that you have chosen to value, turn it into biology and timelines, and then right back into numbers, explaining the impact on your bottom line. She will also outline the 3 key aspects of our health to educate on that are non-negotiable for a successful wellness strategy. Throughout this day Sonia will use her unique tools and exercises, based in neuroscience and mindfulness, to ease your brain and body into a calm and empowered state. This is how she helps you access your own creativity on these matters - helping you, so that you can help them.
1. See your costs and ROI from a new, evolved perspective.
2. Employ new questions on old problems, for better answers.
3. Understand the accessible genius of integrating biology into the numbers, translating it into positive impact on your bottom line.
1. New questions and perspectives that will give you an advantageous shift in strategy for company issues such as mental health, culture, benefit costs and stress leave.
2. An understanding of how to take our biological health and use it for strategic metrics.
3. A map of the timelines operating in your company, the costs associated with them, and a vision for what a compassionate (empathy in action) intervention could look like.
4. Numbers-based permission to care.
“Sonia has a unique knowledge which she is able to bring to people’s suffering in a way that gives them choice”
- Paul Penner, M.A. Counselling, CCS, PACCP Executive Director Pembina Counselling Centre
"Sonia’s passion for health and wellness is truly inspiring.
At Decor we’ve had the privilege of working with Sonia for a few different events.
She has led some smaller workshops with specific departments, giving us tools to help reduce stress in the work environment and helping us understand our interactions with coworkers. We were also fortunate to have her as a guest speaker at our Disrupt Conference with dealers and designers from across the US and Canada. The sessions focused on how stress and anxiety impact all areas of our health and how to deal with it in a productive way.
She is an accomplished speaker, confidently sharing her knowledge and expertise gained working around the world. We would highly recommend Sonia to any company looking for effective employee wellness strategies and targeted wellness events."