Lately, there has been a big fear of exposure theme in my life, and the raw vulnerability that comes with revealing my true self. As I embark on starting my own Nutritional Consultation business, many things are coming up for me that I hadn’t anticipated. I am starting to think about how others view me, and if that fits within the status quo model of how a business owner is perceived. Will people take nutrition advice from a frazzled single mother entrepreneur who is having a hard time being her own health guru? The potential judgements that could result from what I post on social media to my grocery store choices, and even the kind of car I drive or the house I live in; It all feels like a significant loss of freedom. And this lady does not like feeling unfree.
Thankfully, I reached for the right book at the right time where the author details the Heroine’s Journey (in homage to my soul brother Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Journey):
To this end, the Call makes a very specific, non-negotiable demand. You must commit an act of disobedience--an essential part of our Heroine’s Journey--by breaking the Ego’s rules, defying its authority, adhering instead to your Soul’s directions.
~Barbara Stanny (Sacred Success)
So, I am answering the Call. I am all in to define this rite of passage by my own standards and not feel any obligation to mold myself into what the world tells me a female business owner should look like, act like or be. This is true with anything. I went through this same nonsense when I became a mother, and I am sure any of the women reading this can relate; I was bombarded with messages and advice from well-meaning people about child care, motherly behavior and image. Or, take being a woman in general. A woman is supposed to know how to cook, wear high heels and be agreeable. Right? If that is who she is and what she wants yes, but otherwise, solidly no. A business owner is a business owner because he/she owns a business. Any part of the identity beyond that is for us to decide. It’s up to all of us as heroes and heroines to disobey the rules and break free from all of the boxes starting today.
In the past, my fear of exposure would often contradict itself. As a kid, I would force myself to do things my mind was saying no to, like perform in a school recital or talk in front of a group of people. Yet, when it came to my relationships, I was overly cautious. Slowly over time, I have begun to implement my earlier ignore fear strategy in dealing with the people in my life. It’s often referred to as “speaking your truth” and "standing in your power" in spiritual circles or "being your own person" to everyone else. As other recovering people pleasers can attest, self-abandonment is exhausting. I've come to the realization that there is a cavernous distinction between being open-minded and taking on the role of the pleaser. Sure, we can justify the behavior as wanting to make others feel comfortable (putting others on a pedestal), giving the benefit of the doubt (making excuses for crappy behavior), not stirring up drama (not speaking our needs), finding the easiest solution (avoiding confrontation), blah, blah, blah. But, what it ultimately comes down to is us (the pleasers and recovering pleasers) giving away our power to people and things outside of ourselves.
I have found there to be a correlation between people pleasing and addiction, especially emotional eating. Guilty! When you don’t speak up and say how you really feel on a daily basis, those emotions you trap inside of yourself don’t go away. They fester and bubble up at inopportune times, predictably around the holidays. Then, it’s so convenient that there is plenty of soul-numbing alcohol and sugar to push these emotional monsters back into hiding. Then what are we left with? Toxic effects from alcohol and too many sweets absorbed into your energetically stressed cells which synthesize to produce symptoms like digestive disorders and inflammation which over time lead to autoimmune disease, cancer and a variety of other imbalanced biological expressions. I was faced with my own disempowering choices coming to a head after the combination of a chronically blocked throat chakra (people pleasing), a stressful divorce and toxic mold poisoning which eventually triggered Hashimoto's Thyroiditis. I'm not really sure what was the straw that broke the camel's back, but I am certain that all of these factors played a role.
Also, understand the difference between people pleasing and pleasing people. The former requires you to shrink yourself to conform to the desires of others, the latter stems from embodying wholeness and choosing to share that wholeness with others. When you are whole, discernment and boundaries become automatic. You don't manipulate your behavior as a reflection of others, but guide your actions and choices from your heart center. People pleasing is not worth it. Standing proudly in your naked truth is. And yes, you will feel like Beyoncé when you finally do it...and for the guys, maybe an enlightened James Bond? It's time to ring the alarm for our health and peace of mind by making empowered choices in how we direct our unique and dynamic life force.
I done put in a call
Time to ring the alarm
Cause you ain't never seen a fire like the one I'm gon' cause ~Beyoncé
I recently joined a group on Facebook that is essentially a collection of strangers who came together through one connecter to create a sort of cyber confessional. As I started my first live video, the familiar heart pounding, face flushing, and palm sweat ensued, but I persevered, describing the sensations I was feeling as I eased into the introduction. When all was said and done, I felt a rush of vital energy. All I can think of lately is; This is something everyone should have in their lives. Yes, most of us all have friends and family who we talk to and relate to, but how many of the people in your life truly give you non-judgmental presence? How unbiased can their view of you really be? It is a much different experience for strangers to hold space for you. Being fully real can feel scary, but weirdly, emotional nakedness in front of conscious and self-aware strangers is indescribably liberating. I now understand the draw of groups like AA. Maybe we need to start HA: Humans Anonymous. We are all learning as we go.
I am a Nutritionist who likes writing about personal evolution while weaving in nutritional information, as well as cultural and biological mechanisms. I do this because I don't believe changing your food without addressing the other ways we humans can sabotage ourselves is very useful in the grand scheme of things. I feel that there are enough Nutritionists writing about food and biochemistry of the body and not enough connecting the dots in other unexpected ways. I can explain to you why gliadin (the protein component found in gluten) mimics thyroid hormone and competes for receptor sites, and how this negatively affects the gland, as well as how avoiding gluten will support thyroid health. But, if you are stressing your thyroid in other ways (people pleasing), nutrition therapy won't have the same level of effectiveness. And, I want success stories for ALL of my clients.
As a Nutrition and Functional Medicine Professional, I can prescribe a custom food plan that will help resolve symptoms and the biological roots of your health issues, but what I want everyone to understand before coming to see me is that body focus is not enough. You have to be committed to looking not only at what doesn't serve you, but also your personal approach to life. Basically, all forms of transformation are a process of unlearning and releasing old patterns while also implementing something new. You need to create the space first by being willing to let go of the old and automatic behaviors, excuses, and playing small to allow something new and amazing to grow and flourish. Otherwise, you are just going to be watering decaying roots. If you commit to coming in with this growth mindset, I will commit to creating a safe space for you to experiment with change and facilitate your road to vibrant whole health.
Physically, most people want to look good naked. I don’t necessarily think this is vain or unhealthy. Where this becomes toxic is when looking good naked is a singular viewpoint. When you are competing with false images of beauty, most people don’t stand a chance. This is why I choose not to watch television and have stopped buying fashion magazines. And the result of these choices has been higher levels of self-love and confidence. If you want inspiration, compete with yourself. I say we bring back the refrigerator picture. Find a picture of you at your best. This doesn’t mean your thinnest, although for some people this may be when they were feeling best. But, let the focus be on finding a picture where you were happiest. Where you were beaming with love, light, and joy. Even if it is a picture from when you were a kid. This is what we need to get back to, a way of being worth striving for. This specific image could act as an effective reminder to stay motivated toward health, bliss and life expansion. Not some photoshopped model. Not when you were thin, yet unhappy. Most people want to look good naked, they just are too scared to actually be naked. Dare to take this journey with me in learning to live and love life completely exposed.
To kick off my grand opening, I am running a super exciting program called Clear and Lean: Weight Loss and Personal Renewal Challenge. If you are looking to experience a full spectrum life re-set in January, follow the link below for more info and to register! ~Sasha
Disclaimer: The author of this site encourages you to consult a doctor before making any health changes, especially any changes related to a specific diagnosis or condition. No information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.