Nicole Smith

Interview Summer 2022

Nicole Smith

Customer Service Manager, Herbalist & Alchemist

 

Nicole Smith has been with Herbalist & Alchemist since 2017 in the customer service department. A graduate of David Winston's Center for Herbal Studies 2 year program, she has worked her way up to Customer Service Manager. Nicole loves interacting with our customers and is on a first name basis with many. Her dynamic customer service team provides the answers and support to your product, order, shipping and tracking questions.

When and how did you first become interested in medicinal herbs?

My first interest in alternative medicine happened about 23 years ago when I started working at an animal hospital where one of the veterinarians on staff was a veterinary acupuncturist. He also was trained in Chinese Medicine for animals. I became fascinated watching people’s pets having a better quality of life after treatment.

Fast forward a few years and my life took a very big turn when I met my now husband who lived in Glasgow, Scotland. When we decided to get married, I made a life altering decision, deciding to join him in his native land. Giving up everything I had and everything I knew, I jumped out of my comfort zone and moved to Scotland. Living life in the UK was very different than living life in America. I learned that there were more alternatives to traditional medicine and that doctors used those alternatives quite a bit. Just one example is when I was pregnant with our first child and suffered severe morning sickness. My midwife and doctor agreed that I should put a half of lemon on my bed-side table and just sniff it when I felt nauseous. I must preface this with I’m a completely skeptical girl, born and raised in New Jersey. I thought they were nuts, but I did it anyway. Imagine my surprise when it worked like a charm. I couldn’t believe it. When my daughter was born and had allergies which caused her to have very bad diaper rash and the midwife advised that I use cotton balls soaked in olive oil instead of wipes, I was a lot less skeptical. Guess what, that worked too! I started reading a lot about less traditional methods of healing and became very interested. My mother-in-law was an avid gardener and she taught me a lot about plants and what they could be used for. I may be a “Jersey Girl” and New Jersey may be the “Garden State” but let’s just say that at that time, gardening was not something that I was particularly good at. Thankfully, I had a good teacher. I am now able to grow many herbs and plants without killing the poor things.

Tell us about your herbal training.

My training began under that veterinarian 23 years ago. I asked a lot of questions. He answered them all, gave me books to read and even sent me to some lectures and seminars where I could learn more. My interest never waned when I moved to Scotland where I was able to explore herbal medicine and alternative therapies through my own medical care and that of my family. I learned more about plants, how to care for them, and how to use them under the guidance of my mother-in-law. Then fast forward a few more years where various events caused us to move to America. I had a few jobs in retail and sales before my friend told me that there was an opening at a client of his. He thought that I would be a good fit with them. So, I applied for a job at Herbalist & Alchemist.

How did you first join H&A?

In March of 2017 I started working at Herbalist & Alchemist in customer service. Today, I am the Customer Service Manager.

How do you use your herbalism education?

In 2018, I started David’s 2-year course. This helped me understand so much more about my job and helped me pronounce the names of herbs correctly. It has given me a deeper connection with our products.

What are some of your favorite H&A products and why?

I am so lucky to work here. Herbs have helped me and my family through various serious medical conditions and some more mundane conditions as well. Even though David says that everything is better with Bitters, I have to say that for me, everything is better with Muscle/Joint Tonic. Many years ago I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. Since I started taking Muscle/Joint Tonic it has helped me with everything. It is quite literally the ONLY thing that has helped me feel somewhat normal again. Not to mention that I turned 50 this year and it helps me with age associated aches and pains.

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