Do you feel it is important to work with someone who really ‘gets’ you?
Do you ever feel like you’ve learned to be fearful of your emotions, at least the strong emotions? Do you feel that if you go there and allow yourself to feel sadness, for example, it can feel as though you are spiraling down and down feeling stuck in it like it’s a big black hole you may never get out of? Are you afraid of being out of control of intense feelings such as anxiety, panic attacks, or anger even rage that frightens others as well as yourself? Do you find yourself doing whatever you can to keep various emotions under control, so you don’t have to feel them and others don’t have to see them?
I am a Transformational Life Coach for people who find it hard to manage their emotions. They’re struggling with low self-worth, anxiety, anger, and sadness. I help them develop self-confidence, feel free and in control to create the life they want to live.
My emotions had taken charge of my life for several years
The day my battle with my emotions began was around a traumatic and sad incident.
My brother died, he was eighteen months old, and I was four. My memories of him were of a mass of golden curly hair and a beaming smile. I used to play with him often, push him in his peddle car. On the morning I found him dead in his cot, beside my bed, all our lives changed forever. I tried to wake him up, but he was cold and didn’t move.
I didn’t and couldn’t understand what was going on. All I knew was that something really bad and scary had happened.
I remember seeing the teenager, she was seventeen, that had come that morning to look after us, as usual, and my mum who had come into the house from somewhere outside, implode with grief, shock, and other emotions. I sat and watched confused and afraid.
That scene, the feelings of shock, confusion, fear and later anger and grief, had been etched in my memory for a very long time. I didn’t know it then, but much, much later I realize that I had suffered from a post-traumatic stress disorder.
What made things worse
My parent’s emotions were all consuming and they buried them, with a smile for the world outside and a pride that they were “walking on” getting on with life, keeping busy, in order to avoid feeling, fully, the deep pain and guilt.
As a four-year-old, I made that difficult. I screamed. I got angry. I kicked and hit my mother in an effort to keep her away, I wouldn’t let her touch me or feed me. My mother was not in a place to understand and both my parents took my behavior personally and considered me a naughty difficult child.
No one in the immediate or extended family talked about it, to me it felt like a big secret. I grew up confused, with a deep grief I couldn’t’ express or feel at the time, masked by anger and then ever increasing numbness, as I realized that I was not allowed to express my feelings, it just was not safe.
I shut down and distanced myself from my parents feeling, as time went on, less and less able to trust them. I felt like I was a ghost child, the forgotten child. There was no real safe space or solid ground.
Growing up – my childhood was not how it seemed on the outside
On the outside, we seemed like an ordinary family, getting on with life. Behind the scenes the family was dysfunctional. Emotionally, as a child and teenager, I felt I had also lost my mother, father, and sister who was born a year after my brother died – we just didn’t connect. This felt lonely, unsafe and confusing.
However, luckily for me that I connected to two very kind family friends and my gran. I loved them and learned a lot from them. When I left home at sixteen I lost touch with a lot of people from my hometown and my gran died, fairly young, when I was nineteen. This was another major loss for me and I was not able to fully grieve, for the loss of her, until several years later.
Stuck in a turmoil of emotions
As I got older, it became more difficult to contain my emotions and hide. I started experiencing panic attacks, anger, or freezing and body sensations that would stop me in my tracks.
The triggers that pushed my buttons, growing up, would be things like being shouted at; seeing someone in a rage; being overly judged; constantly criticized; hit at school and at home, which was both a trigger and a traumatic experience. Often I didn’t know what I had done wrong. I felt rejected, scared of saying the wrong thing, of upsetting others and became wary and mistrustful of others.
I couldn’t recognize what I wanted, let alone be able to voice it or be allowed to express any emotion.
It took me a long time to be able to access my anger, and I was angry, and under that, I was deeply sad, full of grief for many losses over the years. I just couldn’t make my life work and this took a toll on my relationships, my health, how I made decisions and most areas of my life actually.
I didn’t feel good enough. I felt that I couldn’t get anything right, that there must be something wrong with me. I didn’t fit anywhere, there was a feeling of looking in from the outside. I felt lonely even amongst groups of people.
Wake up call
The real wake up call came when my daughter, aged seven, was pushing my trigger buttons. I closed down. I didn’t want to respond in the same way as my parents but didn’t know another way.
My daughter, shouted at me “you are just like an ice maiden”. I don’t really know why, but it kind of broke through the ice and I could recognize myself in her words.
At that moment, I realized I needed help to heal the wounds from my past, not only for me but for my daughter, my second husband, and others.
Needing help to get me back
I had to face up to the fact that I had become the problem in my life. Whenever I tried to challenge myself I experienced fear and repeated habitual and automatic patterns behavior that felt familiar but kept me stuck.
Somehow I knew I needed to heal the wounded parts and find the parts of me that I was too scared to allow to be visible.
I started with counseling and even trained as a counselor, but knew I needed more so I kept searching, experiencing and learning. Step by step the wall I had built around myself softened, brick by brick, and dissolved as I delved deeper and allowed myself to safely express the stuck emotions, feel the pain of grief and shed the tears. I became able to see things more clearly, without the fog of emotion, from the past, clouding my judgment.
I learned how to handle my feelings, I am no longer afraid of intense feelings, and my emotions, when they come, are appropriate to what is happening at that moment. I allow my emotions to flow through me, instead of getting lost in my feelings and stuck in the back stories and whatever emotion is uppermost. So things that used to bother me don’t anymore. I know myself better and I am now able to love and value myself.
It’s like my journey has been about making sense out of confusion and learning to experience emotions, differently, adopting a different mindset and healing the trauma to be in the world, fully experiencing the light and dark without fear. To keep expanding my comfort zone, be able to fully function and grow as a person, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. To know who I really am and not be afraid to be authentic and visible in that way.
I made it through to the other side experiencing my life differently
Today my life has changed beyond recognition. I am confident, assertive, happy and feel an inner freedom I had never felt before. I feel more in control, responding to situations and people rather than reacting. I am able to experience being stretched without the debilitating stress and anxiety and know what to do, should I need to, to get back on track. I am able to effectively communicate and connect with others having and maintaining loving supportive relationships.
Being able to be me, authentic and visible has helped me forge deep meaningful friendships that are full of fun, laughter, and joy, but where we are able to discuss the difficult issues, without fear or judgement. My relationships with others, my mother and especially my husband, daughter, and grandchildren are based on loyalty, compassion, trust, non-judgement, love, and fun. I never imagined things could be this good.
I feel immensely grateful for how I am able to experience life now and to be in a place to be able to help others move through their pain and experience their life differently.
I have been working as a Transformational Life Coach for over ten years. In that time I have helped clients, get to the root of their problem, feel in control, more confident and at peace with themselves. Every time a client experiences a breakthrough, I feel happy and joyful that they have found a way to live their life, feeling more empowered and free and the way they want to.
I bring all of my training and experience with me when working with my clients in a very intuitive way. That means each session is tailored to what the client needs, so it is bespoke for that client.
My training has been in Life Coaching, Hypnotherapy, Human Givens Therapy, Neuro Linguistic Programming NLP, Advanced Emotional Freedom Technique, Healing, Mindset and Meditation.
When a client is feeling intense emotions or trying to push them down, and a part of her mind is overthinking it or running back stories, I help her to allow the emotions without getting lost in those stories and past experiences and become aware of what is really going on for her. I help her gain insight and find her own answers, by helping her release intense emotion and let go of old beliefs that can cloud her perception of things and keep her stuck, so she can see her way forward.
I am sharing my story here because I believe life can be good for you too and to inspire you to change your situation. It is possible to change how you feel and think about yourself and your life – I am proof of that.
Even though we can’t control what happens to us, we always have the opportunity to choose how we respond. When we make conscious decisions about our responses, we can influence the outcome and how our lives look for the better.
If you are ready to take back control, I encourage you to visit my “work with me” page to see how I can help you.