We had the good fortune of connecting with Nathan Serrato and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Nathan, what do you attribute your success to?
The most important factor behind my success is the success of my clients. Queer people in this society are taught to hide, to make themselves small, and to fit into boxes. There’s a shift that happens during the coaching process when they recognize just how capable they are… Sometimes it sounds like a chuckle. They realize they’ve been letting the world call the shots for them. Other times it looks like tears. They realize just how harsh they’ve been on themselves. And other times it’s just silence. For a split second, it’s like they’re able to question everything the world has ever taught them and finally have the clarity to move forward in their most queer, authentic way.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Queer Conscious aims to reconstruct a more inclusive queer community. Toxic masculinity, racial hang ups, and unrealistic body standards need to go. One part is through the monthly meetups and another part is through individual coaching. The community is my offering because there is such a desperate need for healthy, sober spaces where GBTQ+ men can meet one another. Our meetup activities include hikes, yoga, and arts & crafts. Since COVID-19, we’ve switched to virtual gatherings with intentional discussions.
While the groups are important, the biggest transformations happen through one-on-one coaching. While therapy typically focuses on healing the past, coaching takes a forward approach. Together, we set goals that align with their true values and work to dismantle any thoughts or belief systems that get in the way.
I think what draws my clients to me is the way I carry myself. Humans are so complex and I really do my best to honor all the different facets of who I am. There’s a lightness to my spirit and the way I move from one setting to another. One day I am a conscious revolutionary. The next day I am a fierce, pole dancing queen. And the next I am a native plant nerd. Deep down I am always a soft, sensitive human being with a plethora of emotion and I try to honor those emotions every day.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Up in northern Escondido is a place called Deer Park Monastery. I grew up near the mountains there as a kid and I would frequently see monks dressed in their robes walking by. During the holidays, they’d even bring the neighborhood fresh spring rolls. When I was old enough, I finally went to visit on their Day of Mindfulness. Most Sundays, they invite the public to join them for a walking meditation, a dharma talk, and a vegetarian meal. I’d recommend going there to anyone looking to experience the antithesis of our fast-paced western society.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Jordan Daniels who is the leader of Queer Moishe Pod San Diego has been one of my biggest supporters throughout this quarantine. I also need to give a special thank you to Wil Fisher for always supporting me and connecting me to new opportunities. And I absolutely need to recognize all the GBTQ+ men who continue to show up to Queer Conscious events. It’s become more than just a meetup group. They have become the energy and source behind Queer Conscious. They have become my family that I can lean on for support and they give me hope that a more inclusive and supportive queer community is possible.