Heart Soul Wisdom

Beating Anorexia and Choosing Life

July 06, 2020 Moira Sutton Season 1 Episode 9
Heart Soul Wisdom
Beating Anorexia and Choosing Life
Chapters
Heart Soul Wisdom
Beating Anorexia and Choosing Life
Jul 06, 2020 Season 1 Episode 9
Moira Sutton

Love & Relationships
Health & Well Being
Entrepreneurship
Freedom & Fulfillment
Spirituality
Mindset
Passion & Purpose

Beating Anorexia and Choosing Life

Angela has long been on the road to personal freedom. She survived an early life of chaos, which led to a lengthy battle with anorexia and bulimia. She spent a total of twenty-four weeks inpatient over seven years, amidst three separate hospitalizations. Angela credits a team of healthcare professionals plus twelve-step recovery for saving her life, not just physically, but emotionally and spiritually. She sees her eating disorder and recovery path as a huge gift—the beginning of a complete life and spiritual transformation so desperately needed. Angela shares her compelling story of triumph to spread a message of hope, because she still remembers what it was like to have none.

Website: https://angelahowell.com

Gift: Finding the Gift: Daily Meditations for Mindfulness
https://angelahowell.com/ebook-form/

Moira's Website:
http://moirasutton.com/

Create the Life you Love Community:
https://www.facebook.com/MoiraAnneSutton/

Show Notes Transcript

Love & Relationships
Health & Well Being
Entrepreneurship
Freedom & Fulfillment
Spirituality
Mindset
Passion & Purpose

Beating Anorexia and Choosing Life

Angela has long been on the road to personal freedom. She survived an early life of chaos, which led to a lengthy battle with anorexia and bulimia. She spent a total of twenty-four weeks inpatient over seven years, amidst three separate hospitalizations. Angela credits a team of healthcare professionals plus twelve-step recovery for saving her life, not just physically, but emotionally and spiritually. She sees her eating disorder and recovery path as a huge gift—the beginning of a complete life and spiritual transformation so desperately needed. Angela shares her compelling story of triumph to spread a message of hope, because she still remembers what it was like to have none.

Website: https://angelahowell.com

Gift: Finding the Gift: Daily Meditations for Mindfulness
https://angelahowell.com/ebook-form/

Moira's Website:
http://moirasutton.com/

Create the Life you Love Community:
https://www.facebook.com/MoiraAnneSutton/

Speaker 1:

Welcome to the heart soul wisdom podcast, a journey of self discovery and transformation. With Moira Sutton and her amazing guests share real life stories, tools, and strategies to inspire and empower you to create and live your best life. Come along on the journey and finally blast through any fears, obstacles, and challenges that have held you back in the past. So you can live your life with the joy, passion, and happiness that you desire. Now here's your host. Create the life you love empowerment. Life Coach Moira Sutton.

Speaker 3:

welcome to episode nine, beating anorexia and choosing life with our special guests transformation coach, Angela. Angela has long been on the road to personal freedom. She survived an early life of chaos, which led to a lengthy battle with anorexia and bulimia. She spent a total of 24 weeks, i n p atient over seven years, admits three separate hospitalizations. Angela credits a team of healthcare professionals, plus 12 step recovery for saving her life. Not just fiscally, but emotionally and spiritually. She sees her eating disorder and recovery path as a huge gift - the beginning of a complete life and spiritual transformation. So desperately needed. Angela shares her compelling story of triumph to spread a message of hope because she still remembers what it was like not to have any, so without further ado, it is my pleasure to introduce you to transformation coach Angela Howell. Welcome Angela.

Speaker 4:

Hi Moira. So great to be with you today. I appreciate you having me on your show.

Speaker 3:

Oh, I think your story is wonderful. And you're going to reach a lot of people who really need to hear a message of hope, whatever their challenges are today, let it be physically, mentally, emotionally , to just know there's hope there that's a big thing to share. So it's going to be wonderful - inspirational, empowering and your real life story. So yeah. So Angela you had a successful career in the corporate world for many years, and then you went into burnout. How, how did this turn you onto a new direction, a new path, a new journey to begin to discover who you truly are?

Speaker 4:

Well, I had pursued money from an early age, just growing up poor, really poor and insecure. And I figured that it seemed like from my very young perspective, that money would be the answer to all my problems. So I pursued my corporate path completely disregarding any gifts or talents or any purpose that I have . I may have been put here to do my sole focus was money, but also self worth recognition. So I set out to be the very best salesperson I could be. And somewhere in that, I got to where I struggled to do the activity level that I was used to doing to be the best. And I managed to, to be the best, but it took more and more and more out of me to do the level of activity required for that to happen. And I began to feel like I don't know what life is supposed to be, but somehow I'm missing it. You know, I'm married, I love my husband and we've built a home in our twenties and I have, you know, really nice car and great job and winning trips and winning awards sales person a year, year after year. And yet I'm so unhappy. And so , um, I just began to get the feeling that I was supposed to be doing something else, but I had never considered that. And actually when 9-11 happens here in the U S I had a five year old son and it woke me up and for a couple of years, so I retired. I was early thirties and I wanted to be a stay at home. Mom. I had never wanted that before, but then my life circumstances changed about two years into that. And rather than figure out what I was really supposed to do, I went back to what I knew and how to make a lot of money in sales. And within just a couple of months, my body started to break down and I had all sorts of neck pain, shoulder pain and that sort of thing. And that's the time where I like to think that the first opportunity to leave corporate world and find what I'm supposed to be here was a gentle one. And then the second one was a more firm. You're not going to do sales anymore, kind of push. And so I sat about , writing. I remember sitting down one day and writing lots of questions. What am I good at? What do people say I'm good at? What do I enjoy doing? Because sometimes what you're good at doesn't mean that's what you're supposed to do because you may not enjoy it. So it was just that really launched exploration of who, who is Angela? What is she good at? And why is she here?

Speaker 3:

And what did you discover? What were the first things that came out of that? Asking those questions? Because asking questions, it does open up us to opportunities and possibilities and asking the right questions. So what did, what came out of that? What were the first things that you learned that you're really great at or what you were passionate about?

Speaker 4:

I need to dig that list up because it's, it's really, excuse me. It's humorous, because it caused what unfolded was nothing on the list, except for, I knew that I was a good speaker. I had been sharing my eating disorder, recovery story, gosh, for years since 1994, probably. And then in another higher level capacity, since 2007 for an organization here in Tennessee. But other than that , um, I don't, I don't even know what I put on the list, but the first thing that happened was I became a photographer accidentally. I had always loved taking pictures, but I never had willing subjects. My husband and son hate having their photo taken. And here in Nashville with lots of musicians, I had a friend lamenting one day about the agony of getting pictures made for her new CD. And I said, why don't we split the cost of film, which tells you how long ago that was and just go play, you know, and we'll play. And if you don't get anything good, then , then go hire a real photographer. And that day was amazing for me. We got amazing pictures of her. She couldn't believe it. I , I just couldn't believe it. And I thought to myself, Oh my gosh, this is what people mean. When they say you do what you love and you can get paid for it. And so that ex , she told, she immediately told another musician. And I think I charged that person $40, something ridiculously low, which probably just covered film, but that that's how that launched. But I think what you said earlier, when you ask the questions, you may not get the answers you thought you were going to get, but you start, you start things in motion. It's a really, really cool way that that happens.

Speaker 3:

Well, you and I are both on the same page, which is very cool that we are the, you know, you have, what is the gift? And I also have my book coming out. What is the gift and what is the gift to this either way and being saying that to my clients for years, because as we're going to discuss today, and as this unfolds our heartfelt discussion and having fun to Angela that, you know, there's a gift in everything. When you really look at it, even in the hardest times, there's something there for us to learn and grow from instead of saving in our safety zone and comfort zone. That's not what expansions about in the universe loves expansion. So let's, let's jump in here about your purpose story of your family and being part of a traveling Christian ministry and how this has impacted your overall health and wellbeing., because I find it very fascinating, your personal story here.

Speaker 4:

Oh, thank you. There's when people ask me to share my story, I always clarify, well, what part did you want to do? Because there's so many chapters, the traveling ministry chapter, I was a age five to age eight and it was really like being in, I I've never been in a carnival or a circus, but I would imagine it's kind of the same where we lived in mobile homes and campers and renovated school buses. And , and we traveled in massive caravans of semis, you know, when we went to a new city and then the big day was pitching the big tent where all the revivals would happen and it was this huge glorious tent. And so those years for me were adventurous. Um, we did a lot of witnessing on the streets, which was really interesting. Some of that, the city I remember most was Washington DC. And , uh, you know, just, just really adventurous, I didn't know any different. So , I sound like I knew my life was not that much different. I mean, the other kids in the ministry had the same life I had. So I didn't have any friends that weren't in the ministry. I didn't know anything different. Um, it really was like being in a hippie commune is this was the early seventies. And, and we, we were, everybody was part of one big family. So meals were one big event together. We were homeschooled in the back of then, you know , I didn't know what else. I know people find that fascinating and I'd love to answer any other questions that come up for you about that. But the main takeaway, if there was a negative is the lack of closeness with family because my dad was handling music related ministry stuff. And , um, my mom was busy and it's almost like, it's almost like somebody was assigned to handle all the kids. So like I remember a lady named Linda and I spent more time with Linda probably than my own family. But, yeah, so that's kind of how it was being raised in a community.

Speaker 3:

I don't, I've never really heard about a traveling Christian ministry in Canada, so that's why I also found it. Interesting. What happened then at the age of eight, did you leave that group in that way of being, and then move into a home? Or what was that like and what did that look like?

Speaker 4:

Yes, when I was eight, my father and mother decided to leave the ministry and we got a home and my father, my parents were not getting along. And so that resulted in a divorce, pretty, pretty ugly and traumatic divorce. And we ended up my mother and two brothers going to live with an uncle temporarily in Oklahoma. And then we, we, my mother got us our own home and we were there for about three years to four years. And so that was sort of regular life, except now I'm a single and a single parent home, you know, but, but going to a regular school.

Speaker 3:

So your ten year battle with thank you with anorexia and bulimia and three separate hospitalization. When did that start? How old were you when that started and how did you recognize it and know why that is? So people who, you know, not too sure, you know, if they might have it.

Speaker 4:

Yes. Uh, at the time back in the, that would be probably late seventies, early eighties, that the eating disorder awareness isn't anything like what it is today. So I had never heard of an eating disorder, but the, the trauma in the divorce and some other chaos that surrounded that time , um, really changed me from, you know, a child to a very fearful person and a very introverted person. And I guess maybe, maybe coming out of a community environment, coming into a different environment, I just had immense insecurity and just this in that whole shift of losing my father , you know, being part of my life, I, you know, I was his little princess. My mom, you know, really had a thing with the boys. And so that, you know , kind of losing my champion in the home and not having him around , um, all of that together, I think contributed to just being very insecure and scared of the world. You know, again, all the stuff that had happened too, and I became obsessed with being thin. So the background for that is my dad was a professional athlete. And so he was always focused on fitness and his, I mean his body up until we joined the ministry, he played professional baseball. And my mother was a tall, beautiful teacher, you know, she'd been in pageants. So both of them were very body conscious and always on diets, but always breaking diets and always exercising. And so I think that was just the natural transition for me. And, you know, when someone develops an eating disorder, usually it's from a lack of control. And so, you know, in hindsight, I can say that there was, I had, there was so much that it was out of control in my world that I began to focus on being thin. That was how I was going to get my parents' approval, the world's approval, and then being very poor. I remember one time when I was nine, my mother taking us to McDonald's and saying she would treat us to ice cream after our happy meals or whatever, and me declining because I was full and she went on and on and on about my willpower. And I didn't know what willpower was, but I , I knew that it felt really awesome to have my mom think I was great and that anchored, you know , in my mind, ah, if I don't eat or if I restrict, or if I, you know, don't participate in indulging in food, I get favorable attention from my mom. So that sort of planted another seed. And I remember making the list at nine years old, top 10 things I wanted most in the world. And one of the first one was to be thin. Um, I think the second one was to have my parents back together. And the third one was to be less of a bother. So I really started developing this feeling that I was a bother to people. And all of that kind of works together to take someone into their own world where, because all of that is so painful, it's so much easier and nicer to focus on fitness. But again, this is a nine year old. That's pretty young to start becoming obsessed with body. But unfortunately that's what that's when people start happening. I remember when my own son was around eight or nine and him coming home from elementary school and saying, mom, am I fat? I'm like, no. Why, why do you say that? And him telling me, well , some boys said that my belly was chubby and you know, he had a little bit of a round belly and I had heard that. And I'm like, are you kidding? This belly ? This belly is perfect. You've worked so hard to have a belly that is this wonderful, no, you are perfect, you know, and reassured him. But that's when kids start noticing each other's bodies and, and talking about that. And so , um, that battle with having the perfect body continued until 13 and this is kind of a horrifying part of my story, but it's just is what it is. Um, I used to love to eat, to sooth , you know, that was kind of a way to medicate. A lot of people eat for emotional reasons. And by then my dad had remarried and my stepmother and I had baked cookies and ate lot of cookies. And I mentioned that I wish that I could throw them up. And for whatever reason, she gave me ipecic, which is a poison control substance. And that did the job. And I never needed that again. I just needed the, I just needed the idea. And , um, I'm, I'm sorry that I said the name of that, because I don't like to plant seeds for people. I think people would find it too, but I understand what you're saying, but when I share it with high schoolers and middle schoolers, I don't try really, I'm really careful what I say, because I don't want to give any more information than I have to share my story, but bingeing and purging and as well as starving as part of my story. And that's what launched, that's what planted the seed. I never thought about that, but that, that, that showed me, I can do all of this and then get rid of the calories. And so it kind of did a cycle of starvation compulsive over exercising for two or three hours, lots of running and bingeing and purging and purging. I also found was a way to express rage. The second time I did, it was definitely a way for me to rage. It was a way to scream and yet nobody heard me.

Speaker 3:

That's very interesting. I haven't heard that before. So that's very, very interesting. So your whole worthiness is tied into this and, and I assume that your stepmother thought she was doing a good thing back then. Um, but wow, that's amazing. So how did you start to grow your worthiness? And when did you start exploring new ways of being so you're not identified by your weight? You know , um, I'm very much a person about diversity and it's not about ability, disability, color, race, gender. I see. Well, that's part of this show. It's about coming together, you know, to raise the consciousness for people who are unconscious for the greater good of humanity and our planet. F or us to connect with other people to consciously create our best lives. So what were some of your best practices that you started to put together and how many years for this to happen?

Speaker 4:

I really have to give credit to the eating disorder, although it was an incredibly trying season of my life. It put me on a path of personal development and growth and all this seeking that you're describing. my first hospitalization was at 17. I had, I'd heard that a former best friend at another school was in the hospital. And I, I asked why, and I got this word anorexia and I'd never heard of it. And when I looked it up, I just like, Oh my gosh, this is me. And I felt immense relief because I carried so much shame that I did all this weird stuff secretly with food. Nobody knew nobody, not even my best friends, nobody. And so my mother was able to get me in this program. And that first hospitalization was three months long. And I learned that that was the start of digging into some of the family stuff, some of the trauma and learning how to unpack. I think before you figure out who you really are, you almost have to unpack who you are, not who you have believed that you are. That is a lie. And so , there's a great quote that I'm not going to be able to say it, but one of the little things maybe it's not about, you know , being something new, but, but unbecoming, all the things that either weren't you, something like that. So , that eating disorder treatment system, it planted a seed. It started the process, but an eating disorder, the average time frame for someone to come out of an eating disorder, which by the way, anorexia is the number one cause of death for all psychological conditions or assigned psychological psychiatric conditions. I'm not exactly sure how that's voted , which is shocking to me. I don't think people realize how prevalent it is and how difficult it is once that takes hold. It is a mental illness that is vicious and difficult to break out of. And so, but the average person, once they start trying to get better, the average person it'll take them seven years to finally beat it seven years. And so my first hospitalization was at age 17 and my last one was right before I turned 24. So I am right on that seven year average Mark. My second hospitalization was at 22. I was there for two months. And that one, I was, I was in really bad physical health because of the ramifications of what I was doing to my body without getting too graphic. And I was given an ultimatum by a therapist that I had to check myself in somewhere, or she would check me in somewhere. And so I found this wonderful sunny place in Florida, and I thought, this'll be great. I'll get to run on the beach. I mean, I really went there to not die, but I did not go there to live, which is a huge distinction and a huge thing that we'd have to bring to anything, anything that we're trying to do. It can't be to not do something. It has to be for the positive. And so that didn't work out. I came home and immediately relapsed and it was another year of fighting and struggling. And then I went to my last treatment center. I had gotten married and I thought, I really want to transition to my new life. And I went to that one because I wanted to live and that one worked. And why did it work? Because my mind was in the right place. And so all of this collectively added to, you know, to try to answer your questions about my journey is to get, get free of that, you know, that thing. But unfortunately I transitioned into workaholism. And so, you know, now fast forward to the part of the story we've already talked about where, you know, that led to burnout and you know, now my body's breaking down and I'm having to ask myself what I'm really here for. So the path was, you know, identifying what I'm good at, what I like, what I enjoy and then just starting somewhere and of course my path includes lots of books and webinars and audio tapes. And as a sales person that also contributed to a lot of my personal growth, you know, mastering your mind and, you know , think and grow rich. And some of the historical , books on, you know , becoming your best self.

Speaker 3:

Well, definitely beliefs and mindset. Self-talk, you know, that all plays into living a really our best lives. And so that definitely our beliefs, because the thing is about being conscious or unconscious. There's lots of times we go through just every day and we're going through the motions with no e-motion. We're just going through the motion and not even really aware of what we're doing. So this led to your spiritual victory beating anorexia, is that correct?

Speaker 4:

Yes. I mean the third, the third hospitalization was the final one that was 1992. And I think it's safe to say when you have an eating disorder, I don't know anyone who is ever completely healed as if it never happened before. I think we all have , a bend toward a certain thing . So when I go through a stressful time, then I can see the tendency to get distracted. And it's two o'clock. I forgot to eat lunch. You know, I can see that, or the opposite of I'm stressed. I'm bored, I'm restless, I'm fearful. Where's the talk, what , you know, so I can still see those tendencies. It's just-that's the difference. I'll get asked a lot. Well, how do you know if you have an eating disorder? Because I emotionally eat sometimes and or I might skip a meal. We all do. The difference is when it has crossed a line and you are no longer in control, that's when you have slipped from, you know , kind of a bad habit or, you know, kind of what a lot of people do into, you know, this has become a mental disease. I'm, I'm out of control. I can't make myself stop doing this. That's when you know, you've really got a problem. And then of course, there's that slippery slope in between the two.

Speaker 3:

So Angela , you mentioned you have to be aware, so you're very conscious. If something comes up for you, if you're stressful or feeling anxious or in a state, a lot of people are in the state of, you know, right today they're in a state of fear and not knowing what's going to show up in our lives versus being very present in the present moment. And so what is your relationship to food today?

Speaker 4:

It's about what I described. I have gone from early recovery days of having a very rigid program where, you know , I had a whole team of wellness people, you know, doctor, a psychiatrist, a therapist, a nutritionist, and my food plan. I didn't know how to eat. I had been eating so bad and so wrong or not eating for so long. I didn't, I didn't know what was normal. I didn't know what a portion size was normal. So it was about, you know, being educated too. So for breakfast, you're going to have, you know, two carbs and a protein, you know, and p ick. And o f course t hey define what was, you know, which one was, what was a carb? I mean, ev en b ack then, we didn't talk carbs. Now. Now that's an e veryday language kind of thing. But, u m , a t some point in that path, probably 15 years down the road, I had been doing that long enough that I was able to, I felt like if I'm truly in recovery an d m y relationship with food should be more normal. So I embarked on a path called intuitive eating, and it's kinda like what you were talking about before, or just then about tuning in and being self aware. And so intuitive eating is about eating when you're hungry and stopping when you're full. Now, I don't always do that perfectly because if something's really tasting good, I might still get over full and there may be times where I'm still struggling with, you know , um, workaholism and I really, really, really want to keep working and I'll, you know, go too long or I'll get a snack as opposed to a meal. So my plan isn't perfect, but I have been able to maintain the same weight within usually within five pounds, five to seven pounds since 1992. That's wonderful. Yeah. I kinda like a Bear. I gained a little bit extra in the winter, so I have a little extra warmth and then it just sort of naturally falls off in the spring. And I do not diet. I diets to me are lethal the minute I start trying to control my weight for some sort of aesthetic reason or for some number on a scale or for some number inside my pants, I'm going to have a problem that is going to trigger my eating disorder, a disease. It just it's just so I don't diet . And for me it doesn't work well. I also think that word in there again, diet - yes, that's not good. It's not good. Versus I like nutritional eating and, you know , healthy, all those words - I think a lot better. Yeah.

:

But the biggest thing I want to say is, is in recovering from an eating disorder, usually someone has really, really bad , her negative self body image. And so that is a critical part. And I think even, even women that don't have an eating disorder, our culture sets us up to have such a poor self body image.

Speaker 4:

And so a lot of the work that I've done personally has been viewing my body as a wonderful, you know, sophisticated group of systems that lets me do so much. And the, the outer shell that you all see is a fraction of who I am, who Angela is. And before, like I think you mentioned my worth stemmed from how I looked. I grew up believing that my number one worth was my external appearance and that's just , it's shallow, but it's tragic because it doesn't emphasize the gifts . I were. I was born with the talents,

Speaker 3:

I think too, you know, through the years, I don't think people do, everyone does it now. But when people say, what do you do versus who are you? Or what do you value again, back to those questions because what do you do? You know, you can add in there, I believe in being of service in the world and what am I here to do my purpose? So it's a higher spiritual level. Not that I'm higher spiritually. It's just, that's how I , I look at it and each one of us has a unique life purpose and our unique passions. You went to a program that you attended for women . You shared this with me when we first taught you, you had this mirror exercise and I think it was naked. And I thought that would be a neat thing to share with people because a lot of people can't, you know, look at themselves. I know, I think I shared with you Louise. Hay's had one that you looked in the mirror through your eyes, the soul of who you are and say, I love you. I love you. And even there, people have a lot of people have a problem with that because it starts with self love. You know , self life mastery to me starts with self love because if you can't love yourself and take care of your own energy and your healthy boundaries met. Y ou, can't be there to be of service for other people unless you're going to burn out and be there from that standpoint. So tell us about this mirror exercise, make it,

Speaker 4:

Oh goodness. You're right. It is so awkward when we confront ourselves in the mirror too , to do an exercise, like what you mentioned, you know, just to look at ourselves in the mirror and say affirmations or say, I love you and to really see ourselves. And so the mirror exercise is completely naked to stand in front of the mirror and start coming up with attributes that are nonphysical. And so that's pretty difficult when you're staring at yourself in the mirror naked. And all you can see is the physical but instead you want to look into your eyes and come up with, you know , you are thoughtful, you are a gifted photographer. You are, you know, but then, then it does progress to , um, your arms are so good at carrying things and helping you see your body for what it, how it serves you as opposed to staying stuck on how it all looks. And so it's a powerful, powerful exercise to start to get past the appearance of our body and get into more who we are as our spirit and also the, how our body serves, why we're here.

Speaker 3:

I agree. And the other thing is with , I know when I do my meditation and prayer ritual every day , I very much, you know, I see my healthy organs, healthy blood, healthy bones, healthy muscles, and how healthy skin and how our body is doing all that for us every day. And not to take that for granted, this is our life. And I believe that the universe works through us for the highest. If we asked to be an instrument of love, compassion, peace, you know, what ever those values are for you. And then you're guided every day into, you know, the people you meet, what you're doing and you're coming from inspiration, which I love means in spirit. I like plays on words.

Speaker 4:

I love this too. Yes, that's beautiful. That's perfect. I love everything about that.

Speaker 3:

Now you have a model, you say ordinary life, extraordinary perspective. Can you expand on that one?

Speaker 4:

Sure. So as my body was breaking down in 2005 and it was becoming evident that I couldn't do my, you know, we're winning sales career anymore. You know, life was pretty challenging and physically I was struggling. I was in incredible pain every day and limited even brushing my teeth was very difficult and painful and not to mention anything else. And at the same time I started seeing lessons, life lessons, or spiritual lessons in the most ordinary things, you know , things that I looked at or done or seen, you know, many times before. But on that particular day there held the lesson . So , one of the ones I remember seeing was, you know, I take walk and I kind of get curious about neighbor's trash. And I remember seeing this box, and it was this, this bike, like contraction that where you would hook a bike onto another bike. The second bike had the steering wheel and had the pedals, but it was lifted in such a way that it was really just an attachment, you know, for probably a child to be on and to have the illusion that he's steering and pedaling, but really parent is doing all the work. And, you know, rather than just passing by the trash, lots of tech , you know , that's what they bought. It just was like, you know, what if, what if that's us? And we're in that back thing, we have the illusion that we're steering of the illusion that we're pedaling , you know, but what if God is on the real bike and life is as simple as sitting back enjoying the ride. And so I get this whole download of that because I've also, you know, still struggle with control issues and how feudal would it be? So I'm hard headed and it's really great when I have a visual. So in a bike set up like that, how feudal is it for the person on the back bike to try to steer and to oversteer and to steer harder, it's not going to help , or, you know, pedal backwards. It's not going to matter. And so anyway, that was just one example. Or I might get an example, you know, by looking at the clouds or, you know, I have cats. And so my cats have taught me a lot of things. And so that's what I mean by ordinary life, just regular, everyday things, and yet extraordinary perspective, because we are mindful enough to take notice of what's going on in us and around us.

Speaker 3:

Yes. And I think mindfulness and also , being in gratitude every day, I know lots of people talk about gratitude journals and that, but I think it's, it's so important to be in that vibration of thankfulness and enjoy in peace and choose that feeling. And when other feelings come up, which again, a lot of people are experienced fear and racism today and all those generational things that are coming up, it's there for us to definitely listen and definitely be the voice of our planet in each other healing, but come from a place of love. And I think love is the highest vibration and that's, and to be in that state. And as we do that, others can give themselves permission to also do that.

Speaker 4:

Yes, I totally agree. You have to know where you are and then decide if that's where you want to be. And , gratitude, that kind of ties into what we were talking about earlier for like a question, you know, I've been through quite a few different traumas, you know, even, even into my forties. And that is just been part of my experience, which I feel makes me relatable because they're in different categories. And so, you know, I feel like I'm alive to share hope with people and when someone comes up and they share a struggle , um, I've experienced a lot of, a lot of major struggles that people and traumas that people have experienced. And I can understand that from a first hand perspective, but, I l ove, so I s aid all that because it's been very easy for me to flip over to sort of a victim mentality, y ou k now, and that's the opposite of g ratefulness. That's a different spirit. And so I love when I catch myself too , you know, my book is called finding the gift and it's about what is the gift in this? And I know that's your phrase too, but asking not why did this happened to me, or why is this happening to me, but why did I survive that? Or how is this going to help me get to the next level of my personal evolution, you know, to look for the positive in it. And that's just another way to practice gratitude because we can, we can stay stuck in, you know, this situation really stinks. I wish this wasn't happening, or I wish what happened to me 10 years ago had not happened, but that doesn't help, that doesn't add anything, you know, to, to move us forward. I really much prefer, you know, the gratitude , uh, approach for, you know, how is this helping me? Um, and then if we're really struggling, can we at least ask, how could this be worse? What am I being spared here?

Speaker 3:

I used to speak on cruise lines for years, Angela. And one of the things I had people get up and they always loved it was to do the attitude of gratitude dance.

Speaker 4:

Oh yeah.

Speaker 3:

Yeah. We used to just get up and do the attitude of gratitude dance, and it just changes your whole energy field. So you talk about dare to dream, which is in part of your 10 secrets to finding a gift . Pleases just share with us right now, one real gem of wisdom or nugget of wisdom for people today, with all the anxiousness going on and the change that we're having in our world, how do people begin to dare to dream again?

Speaker 4:

You know, and that goes back to, I think our culture, we are taught to play it safe, to stay calm and to, you know , color inside the box. And so much of us are not encouraged to dream and this I think is passed down generationally where if a child or a teenager decides they're going to do something that to their parents sounds crazy. You know, we discouraged the dreamers. We want them, you know, for our own security. We want our family members and loved ones to stay safe. And so, you know, I really believe that that dreaming and allowing ourselves to imagine, you know, I have a coaching program called a life worth having, and I used a lot of the things that I used on myself, you know, like a snippet from this book or a piece or a suggestion from this webinar, put it all together. And, and I love helping people who come to me some know what they want to do, or they have an idea, but they don't how to execute. But I really love it when I find someone who was like me, that I have no idea what my dream would be. I mean, I know that I can't keep doing sales, but I have no idea what I'm here for. And so , there's, you know, I have an exercise about called five alternate dream lives where we really play, make believe we take off all the social limits, all the economic limits basically remove everything. And if you could make believe what are five different dream lives that you would like to step into? It's just, it's almost, it's a tool intuition as a tool. Empathy is a tool. Dreaming is a tool and many people are very, very rusty at it. And so I love to play that game of make believe with people to help people start to allow themselves to dream again, because we, many of us have this built in sensor that squashes everything that sounds ridiculous or risky.

Speaker 3:

And I think right now in these times of uncertainty, one of my messages is that this is a time you can really get clear. Are you enjoying your work? Or maybe you've been a gift that you can't go to work and you're , you start learning another path, another, a language skill, start a podcast, you know, whatever that is. And to explore that. And with what you're saying, I love Albert Einstein's quote "That imagination is more powerful than knowledge." And the idea of imagining, because when you imagine you do go into that playful realm and not put any stops or obstacles there, but get into that feeling and see what that feels and go to the end result of things you want. And if you don't know, just start playing with it, you don't have to know it all. I always say you see the hell to the universe, but be clear, become crystal clear on what you want, because when you don't know what you want, you're sort of going down different paths, which is fine. But if you really want to get crystal clear and see the end result, and then you allow the steps to show up and there's miracles every day in our life, if we open our eyes to them, Angela. Totally. Yes, Angela, can you share with us the gift you'd like to give to our listeners today? And all the links will be below this episode?

Speaker 4:

Yes. I have a short ebook called "10 secrets to finding the gift" and you can get that by going to my website and you'll see a little pop up that says subscribe. So have a weekly meditation that I send out on early Tuesday mornings, and then that signs you up for that. But it also will automatically send you the free ebook. And of course you can unsubscribe at any time, but that's what I love to give you. It's just 10 short ways to find the gift in everyday life. And you know, for me finding the is two things it's about helping people become more aware and being mindful, but it's also about helping them see the gifts and situations that feel like anything, but a gift . So this addresses just just 10 secrets that I practice myself of how to be , um, how to increase my well-being with no matter , regardless of what is going on in my life right now.

:

We're definitely on the same page with that. Thank you so much. And Angela, thank you for sharing your journey from your heart and soul today, your wisdom on living your best life, beating anorexia and really choosing life. So thank you now. Namaste, Nmaste, thank you so much for having me. It was a pleasure speaking.

Speaker 1:

Thank you for listening to the heart soul wisdom podcast with Moira Sutton. I hope you enjoyed today's episode. Please join our community at moirasutton.com and continue the discussion on our Facebook page. Create the life you love. You will be part of a global movement connecting with other heart-centered people who are consciously creating the life they love on their own terms together. We can raise our consciousness for the greater good of humanity and for our planet.