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Podcast Episode #14: How to Start Being Kinder to Yourself – with Amanda Winwood of Made For Life

Guest: Amanda Winwood, CEO (and Queen of Hugs) Made for Life Organics and Founder of the Made for Life Foundation

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Transcription

Stacie Clark
Hey, Stacie  here and welcome back to the Quiet Connections podcast. I’m not riding solo today, Nope. Today’s episode is being co-hosted again with our lovely, quiet community member. Julia. Who had such a great time interviewing  Fiona Campbell-Howes in a past episode on self care in the workplace, that she wanted to do it all over again. How awesome is that?

So in this episode, myself and Julia are chatting to Amanda Winwood ,CEO and queen of hugs of Made for Life Organics and founder of the Made for Life Foundation. She is also a Reiki master therapist and teacher of mindfulness.

We’re talking all about self-love and acceptance today, which I know can feel so hard for so many of us. It’s a process that takes time and can present its own challenges as we begin to take those steps towards loving ourselves.

So I hope that Amanda’s experiences and her story inspires you to keep moving towards that place of compassion because you 100% deserve it.

Hi, Julia. Hi, Amanda. How are you both doing today?

Amanda Winwood
I’m very well. Thanks.

Julia LeGallo
Good, thank you.

Amanda Winwood
Very good.

Stacie Clark
Lovely. So, Julia, you’ve actually done an episode with us before, which some of you might remember, when we were speaking to Fiona. And that was all about self care and the business, workplace type thing.  And also you’ve done a couple of other bits with us before, but you also already know Amanda a bit don’t you.

Julia LeGallo
Yes, I do.  It’s quite a funny story, but Amanda and I did a Ted talk on the exact same day back in October, 2019. And, I knew Amanda from, from before, but also it’s the first time I was actually meeting her. And her talk, her Ted talk was absolutely fantastic. It was extremely inspiring. And I thought she could be a great interviewee for this episode of the podcast.
Just because after, after we had both talk, we kind of chatted in the  in the little kitchen room or the, the, that it will like gathering area where we, where the, the event was taking place. And I don’t know, I just felt this very intense connection with Amanda, very genuine, very human, and it really, really.

I don’t know, I just felt really connected and really in sync. And I think that, her story and these vibes that she gives around to people, that emanates from her can be truly inspiring for the rest of the community.

Amanda Winwood
No pressure there then.

Stacie Clark
I must  admit I attended that, that Ted talk, which had both of you speaking that day, which is obviously how I met you, Julia, and you were both so amazing. Absolutely amazing.

So, Amanda, would you like to start by just introducing yourself and what it is that you do and who you are?

Amanda Winwood
Yeah, for sure. So, I am the founder of Made for Life Organics.

So if anybody’s, round-about in Truro, they will know that the health and wellbeing innovation center is next to the Royal Cornwall hospital. And in that beautiful space, we take plants and herbs and we still blend them. In a way that we’ve, used for nearly 20 years now. So we take organic herbs and flowers.

We think about the properties of them in terms of the actual chemistry of the, of the plant. And then also the scent. And we make some very beautiful skincare. Now, the interesting thing with that is that the skincare it’s, it’s really gorgeous for sensitive and sensitized skin and, on my journey through, this world and this life and this business, I discovered that 96% of people going through cancer were being turned away from spas.

And, and we were doing quite a lot of work with people with cancer, with our skincare anyhow, and I just thought, God, this is really wrong. So, so alongside the business, I set up a charity called the Made for Life Foundation, and we’ve done a lot of work with, women and men living with cancer, but we also go into spas and train some very beautiful rituals that are slow and calming and very nurturing. That means a spa can welcome anybody because I think wellness should be accessible for all.

So we’ve trained over 2000 therapists and I’m not stopping, as Julia will remember  and you Stacie, as I put my pants of power on, on the stage,I’m not stopping until 96% becomes a ‘Yes’. Throw those spa doors wide.

So that’s me. And I live in Cornwall and Spain. And I’m speaking to you from the heart of Spain this evening, too.

Stacie Clark
Amazing.

Julia LeGallo
I do actually. I did actually  buy some, some of your products for, for Christmas, for my family and for myself. And I can say that it smells absolutely divine every time I take a shower.  So thank you for that.

Stacie Clark
I feel like I need to get myself some!

Julia LeGallo
Beautiful products.

Amanda Winwood
Thank you. So I’m glad Julia that you’re using them because actually.  One of the things that happens is I think, it’s probably become very evident too, is, we all need to look after ourselves and there’s this, this word that we think we’re going to talk about tonight called self-love.

And, and a lot of, the, the thinking behind our products is, is about the concept of self love and, and actually taking time. To just give yourself a personal hug in whatever way that is.

Julia LeGallo
That’s really interesting. I really like this idea. So, I mean, when you talk about self-love, what does that actually mean to you?

Amanda Winwood
What does self-love mean to me? I think it’s about the art of being gentle. To yourself. And, and it’s not, it’s not a normal, natural state. I think actually there’s even some research,that  women are much worse at self-love than men, hashtag just saying, okay. So we, you know, as beings, we tend to  we’ve almost got a habit of looking at our frailties and I think women are exceptionally brilliant at beating ourselves up for, for, for not doing a good enough job often, but actually if we had the ability to step back and, and almost look at ourselves from a distance, I think we’d probably, we cultivate the ability to think we’re quite exceptional.
We’re quite exceptional.

And, and so the art of self-love is, is being able to move from that space of self-criticism to, to actually almost recognize that there’s a very beautiful little person inside of us that deserves our love and care. And if we, if we cultivate that gentleness, and that kindness that we offer, probably to a lot of human beings that surround us. And if we cultivate that ability to do that internally and go, do you know what you’re? You’re really. Okay. I, I love you. Thank you for, for, for giving me all the gifts that you give me.

Then, then it’s, then it changes your, your ability to, god, to even operate in these really, really tough times.

I think that the COVID has, has forced huge tronches of, of us to sit with ourselves for extended periods of time. And, and that’s, that’s not an easy thing to do for anybody. And, and so if you could actually use that time to, to cultivate an ability to just go, you know, what, you okay to stand in front of the mirror and go, you are really okay.  I think you’re a beautiful human being.

And, and, and that’s for me that self-love, and I, you know, this is taking it in its simplest form and it’s not a, it’s not an easy thing to do. You know, people, you say the word self-love and people go, Ooh, go, you know? And, cause it’s, it’s very close to, to selfish.

But it’s, it’s so different to being selfish. Selfish is when you don’t care about others and, and your behaviors and how they affect others. So actually in a way, self love is the opposite of selfish. It’s, it cultivates the ability to love yourself and therefore love others.

Stacie Clark
I love what you just said there, because one of the things that I recognized within myself when I started going down this path of, practicing more self compassion and finding more self acceptance, and that within myself was that I realized I had a lot of shame around actually treating myself that way.

I felt like I. Actually had to, criticize myself and be harsh on myself because otherwise I would be perceived as arrogant or ignorant or selfish, like you said, and that itself felt really shameful for me. And I know I’ve recognized that in a lot of the clients that I’ve worked with as well, this sense of like, it’s unacceptable to, to treat ourselves that way. So thank you for bringing that up because I think that’s such an important aspect for us to address and to look at that perhaps like when we do start to practice some of these self love and self compassion practices, that it can maybe sometimes trigger some of those shameful feelings and actually how, what, what would you recommend to someone when they’re going down that route too?

What would it be like the first step?

Amanda Winwood
Oh, in Spain. There’s a, there’s a saying, which is  little by little, and I love that. I love that expression. So it’s, it’s not, it’s, it’s actually start on a journey of kindness. You’re all going to run down a track because often if you, if you think, Oh, I’m going to achieve great levels of self love immediately, by I’m going to do all these things that make me feel better about life. It becomes, it becomes a chore rather than a joy.

So I think there’s, a past to be heard. That makes you, because again, I go back to, we are absolute geniuses at feeling guilty, women. We’re almost programmed to do it.  But actually if you just do little things, then it becomes, more easy and that little thing could be simply, I will gift myself the pleasure of, of walking quietly through a park or, or, or in a forest, or I ,I will gift myself 15 minutes of just listening to my favorite music or reading a book. So it doesn’t have to be, Oh, I’m going to go off and climb the Himalayas and go and practice, you know, mindfulness and meditation. Chanting om for a week, which is kind of a celebrity approach, I guess, you know, there are not a lot of us who will have the money to do that or the will, and actually we couldn’t probably do it anyhow because nobody can travel.

There are very, very simple little things and the poco a poco, little by little, it’s just a little something. And I think inside us all. From being a child, we will recognize things that make us feel better about life. And that might be simple things like cooking your favorite meal. It may be just standing on a beach and listening to the waves as they come in and out and watching and seeing seagulls.

And you know, maybe it’s being blown in a storm or, and maybe it’s just doing yoga. Or just practicing breathing. Those are little things, but you know what those things are, what we’re meant to do, they’re normal, they’re normal things that every human being has an absolute right to enjoy. We have an absolute right to be healthy and well, and to care for ourselves.
That’s what we should be doing.

Julia LeGallo
That’s really interesting that you say that because usually when I, in my experience, practicing  self-love and, trying to get into that mindset and trying to implement it, poco a poco, as you say,  I do find it’s quite challenging because over me there’s always these external expectations from the world, whether it’s from family, whether it’s from colleagues, whether it’s from society in general, that looms above our, our wish to love ourselves.

And I find it really hard to, do that while at the same time, there’s always a lot of comparison. There’s always a lot of external expectations that.

You never seem to be able to, to reach and my questions around that would be around. How do you achieve self-love despite all of these expectations happening around you?

Amanda Winwood
That’s really good question.

Stacie Clark
That’s a great question.

Amanda Winwood
So I think that in life, you, at the end of our days, who are you answerable to? So, you know, I’m, I’m 58 and I’ve got two beautiful daughters who will have an expectation of, of their mum and various other people.

But actually there’s something about when people do that and you start to think, Oh, they expect me to do this. And they expect me to be this. You need to, maybe my thing that I would do. I’d like to sit quietly with myself and say, well, what do I expect from myself? If I was having a conversation with my future self, what would I like to be saying that I’ve achieved and, and how, cause that, nobody else’s opinion matters.

Cause my opinion about who I am as a human being is the one. That’s going to, to see me through to the end of my days when I’m sitting quietly in a chair with lots of people, maybe around me or in a quiet space. It’s, it’s, it’s maybe the thing to do is to, to create a future history for yourself and to think about what do I expect from myself.

And if I was 70 years old, And reflecting on my life and my expectations of myself who should, who should I be fulfilling other people or just me.

Stacie Clark
Hmm. I really like that practice. But what, what was that, that you called it a future reflection?

Amanda Winwood
A future history.

Stacie Clark
Future history.

Amanda Winwood
So these things in our head, and we’ve got this, you know, our, our brains it’s it’s, Julia has got a great expression she’s mentioned earlier about,  about these brains.

We, our imagination is a gift. So if we can, everybody’s got an imagination, we were it’s our gift. So you create a future history and you imagine you sitting with yourself quietly thinking, do I love myself? And, and, and if I, in terms of my expectations, have I, have I been what I expected?

Have I been, what I expected.

Stacie Clark
It’s about taking the focus away from, Oh, I suppose having given the power, to everyone else, and reclaiming that back for ourselves.

Julia LeGallo
Yeah for ourselves.

Stacie Clark
Yeah.

Amanda Winwood
I find that there’s a gift and it’s a word and it’s called no.

Stacie Clark
Oh I’ve struggled with that word!

Julia LeGallo
Yes me too, I do struggle with it!

Amanda Winwood
I know. I think it’s great to say yes to adventures and things that are, we think Ooh, but also there’s a, it’s an amazing gift just to say no, no thank you. Or no, I’m not going to do do that. And actually, you know, once you’ve said, no, once it becomes really easy.

Yeah. So, yeah, because otherwise I think, when you say no to somebody, I think most people expect people to say yes. And when you say no, No. No, thank you. No, I’m not going to do that. No, if you, if you say no, because you’re, you’re dealing with potentially, I call them mood Hoovers sometimes. So, you know, well, possibly, you know, somebody where you, you, you just, there should be an energy flow.

A positive energy flow with people that we interact with and it can be gentle and it could be calling as it can be liberating, but there should always be something beautiful there. But so, so saying no to people who don’t make us feel okay. Is that okay.

Stacie Clark
I like that. The way I like to try to remember that sometimes, is that every time you say yes to something, you’re also saying no to something else.

And if that, no, like if that’s something else is important to you and actually you’re sacrificing something that’s of importance or of benefit to you and your own wellbeing, then you know, that that’s a huge sacrifice that you’re making and placing so much value on everyone else and everything else around you, but at the detriment of, of your own energy and your own sense of wellbeing.

Amanda Winwood
Yeah, it’s true. So we, we can’t control a lot in life, but we can control this and there’s a lovely saying. That I really adore. And it says the difference between an adventure and an ordeal is attitude. So, so I think we’re in the age of uncertainty, which could be regarded as the age of adventure, if you wanted to reposition and have a bit of fun with that amazing brain that sits between your ears, but it is that sort of thing of, of, of just changing the focus and your thing that you just said Stacie,, about, you know, when you say no, to something, another door will open that will be a big fat yes.

Julia LeGallo
Everything you’re saying Amanda resonates so much with me. It’s,  it’s really  interesting. I do have quite a few questions that pops up in my mind. So the first one is with this whole, saying no more often, I kind of have a question around, do you think that self-love and assertiveness go hand-in-hand?

Amanda Winwood
Hmm, do I think self love and assertiveness go hand in hand, I think. Yes, yes. To a degree. I think assertiveness, sometimes is used in such a way that you start to think of, of, of, of people who are, almost, I think there’s a confusion between assertiveness and aggression. And I think there’s a fine line.

Assertiveness can be construed as being, forcing your opinion onto others and your will. But I think,  I think assurance, quiet assuredness as opposed to assertiveness would be more about self-love. I think assertiveness is, is, It’s an interesting word. I think probably, maybe, maybe I’m would be regarded as assertive.

I certainly, you know, I’ve got views about things if, and I’m very  passionate about this amazing planet and, and so on and so forth. And so I can be probably quite assertive in some views about pesticides and things, plastic and so on. But I think, I think Julia, I do use the word self-assured is self-love as opposed to assertive, it’s having that very quiet, a quiet confidence there that is, is like your anchor in a way.  Does that make sense?

Julia LeGallo
Yeah. Absolutely  I can really feel the difference between the two, with what you’re saying.

Yeah. Yeah. I do like that word.

Stacie Clark
Yeah. I think that’s a really nice approach to it. Being Self-assured. And again, like I talk a lot to the people in our community about this sense of quiet confidence and again, that that to me feels very different to this, perception of, of what many of us believe like confidence is, which can sometimes be misconstrued as, you know, aggression or mostly it’s about forcing yourself into situations and being like, I suppose, a larger figure in, in certain situations. Whereas like quiet confidence is more about having that sense of trust within ourselves.

And that assurance within ourselves that actually we stand in our values and we stand in our truth and, and that, I suppose, whatever. Whatever situations that we come up against that where we believe that where we’re grounded enough to be able to manage and handle any of those situations. And again, like what you were saying, Amanda, I feel like that really is rooted in that sense of self acceptance and self compassion and self love for ourselves.

Amanda Winwood
Yeah. So, you know, assertiveness has a role to play, but I think a gentle, quiet confidence that is, is, is rooted in you knowing who you are. And, and, and, and actually we all will waiver. No one’s ever going to be self-assured all the time. That’s illegal  but, you know, just coming back and there’s something about, about using the breath to reroute with that just quiet space within you that gives you that self-assuredness so that you know, that gentle almost instead of the inhalation, it’s just get rooted by the breath out and come back to that space.

Julia LeGallo
Is that a technique that you use regularly?

Amanda Winwood
Honestly? Yes, yes. Yes. The short answer to that. There’s, a lot of clinical studies and really interesting work around around this, but, you know,  for me, if I ever feel panicky, so I’ll tell you a story. So I, I have to, get over to Spain to, get my Spanish residency. Thank you, Boris and Brexit. here we are, to, to come over here and, and, you know, it was a big adventure to, to get here. And then I had to go into the police station in Tarragona. And Jeff the hubster, had an amazing experience. He’d just breezed in, got the paperwork sorted out, and that was all great.

And I could feel, you know, I thought, Oh, my experience will be the same. I felt a little anxious about it because it’s, it’s not often you go into a police station,to  be quite frank, even more so when it’s not your first language. And. And I had, I didn’t have the same experience as Jeff. I had,  two, two women who, one, one who told me that it was illegal for me to have a fringe in my, in my passport photograph in Spain. So she was, I just kept saying I, and I used the breath. So I was feeling quite, Oh my God, you know, trying to speak Spanish, I’ve got a woman who’s speaking very fast, actually Catalan. And I just, I, I, I could feel a little flurry developing cause usually I feel stuff in my gut first, so I could feel that the bubbles and I just thought Amanda Jane, just take the breath.

And so I just stopped myself and just looked at her and I find smiling helps, you know? Cause you’re you, you start to send brain brain messages up there that the brain’s going, what the hell is she smiling about it? Let’s just go with this, but it makes you change your breath.
So instead of going like this.

Like this probably didn’t do it quite so heavily in the police station.

I breathed out. And then I just smiled at this person and said, Gracias por tu ayuda which means thank you for your help. And she wasn’t actually being particularly helpful, but you know what? It changed the relationship between me and, so yes, I use the breath all the time.
If I’m, if I’m I’m going to speak at a big event, if I’m, if I know I’ve got a big presentation, Then I’ll, I’ll just quietly do some really, really slow deep breaths.

And, and I use that all the time. Julia, you know, I used to use it when I was in the office and I used to think people think she’s a lunatic here. So I used to go off to, to the loo to do this little breathing exercise. I think my team thought I had an incontinence issue, but. Yeah. So if I, if I, if I feel myself having bubbles or little anxieties, you know, I, I, I’ve almost trained my brain nerve to just go.

And when you breathe out, there’s something about releasing all those in a bubbles and that tension, and then it’s gone. So that was a very long and a short answer.

Stacie Clark
I love it though. You shared a really helpful technique there that people can have a go at and, and take away. And, likewise, I like what you said there about, that you’ve trained your brain to respond in that way, because I know from personal experience, actually, when people first started telling me that I needed, or that I, it would be beneficial to, to try out some breathing exercises.

The first couple of times that I did it. I was like, this is doing nothing. And I thought, well, that this is all just rubbish. Like this isn’t going to work at all. And it wasn’t until a couple of years later when I tried it again and I had like some guided practice and stuff with doing that and actually stuck at doing that practice that I realized that, over time and, and with that commitment and with that regular practice, if i could say that word anymore times, that your body does that actually start to, like start responding more naturally when you find yourself in situations where you’re starting to feel a bit panicked or you’re feeling anxious that rather, like you said, your body in and like tense up, instead it goes, Oh, I know what to do in this situation.

And that’s just let out that exhale.

Amanda Winwood
That’s it.

Stacie Clark
But it does, it does take some time.

Amanda Winwood
It does take time, you know, and, but, but if you, if you make it a regular practice and every time you feel that little. Anxiety thing come up, if you just cause when we’re born, you know, the first thing we do is we we’ve been in enveloped  in this beautiful, safe, warmed, up place being held and, and, and, and then we come out into, uh, a bright, cold place and we, you know, our first breath is like, Oh my God, what’s happening.

It’s an inherent part of who we are. So to reprogram it. It’s not going to come at the click of a finger, but if anybody wanted to have a little try, this is quite interesting to do this. So I’m not recommending that people go and stand in the sea now, but we’ve got all these people who are doing, you know, wild swimming and stuff.

Now, if you want to dip your toes in the sea or natural reaction, even in the summer in, in the UK is like that. And then the whole body goes, Ooh, And then we try and stand on tip toes for as long as possible and, and versus the minimum amount of, of our body in the sea. Now, this is a really interesting thing.

Cause if you, if you actually reverse this and you breathe out instead of breathing and you watch what happens, because I promise you you’ll get into that sea more quickly. Than anybody else, you just have to breathe out, breathe out, breathe out. I swim on new year’s day doing this.

Julia LeGallo
That’s a great tip.

Amanda Winwood
It’s really interesting. And it is, it’s just it’s. It works very well with, with, with, with, with panicky, both my daughters who have suffered with anxiety, especially around exams and things. And we’d sit and we just, I just say, now breathe out, now breathe out, now breathe out. But it, you know, And if you don’t get it right straight away, and as you say, Stacie, it takes time, just practice it.

And, you know, maybe imagine yourself in a beautiful space that makes you feel calm. And, you know, maybe it’s a beautiful forest and you can hear the sound of a gentle breeze coming through the leaves and that you can smell the center of the pine and the wood. Maybe there’s some bird song and something that makes you feel calm.

Maybe you’re standing with your feet grounded on some warm sand, and you can hear the sound of the sea coming in and out, and you create this beautiful image and immerse yourself in that. That’s I find that for me, those are two spaces that I found as part of my practice. They just worked. They worked for me.

Stacie Clark
Yeah, that just reminded me of a couple of years ago when I was graduating from the social, the Lloyd school for social entrepreneurs program. And I was about to do a presentation in front of a room of a hundred people. And I was absolutely terrified. But before I went on stage and I sat on like the side of the stage waiting to go on and I just sat there in front of everyone and was like did some breathing exercises.

And as I was doing that, I was visualizing being on a beach with feeling the warm sand underneath my toes. And just feeling like the water kind of, as it laps over your skin and feeling the warmth of the sunshine. And yeah, it helped so much, so much. And like I still to this day feel like, that was the best presentation and bit of public speaking that I’ve ever done, which was huge for me because usually I would be like, a shaking mess and my legs would be shaking and it would just have been a horrible experience, but having learned some of those practices and I think also giving myself permission to know that it would be okay if even if it did go wrong, that’s really, really helpful.

Amanda Winwood
Yeah. Well done you, very good.

Julia LeGallo
Yeah. It’s, it’s great that you’re sharing these tips and, and all these,  I would say, helpful behavior, Amanda, that you’ve put in place throughout the time, but I was kind of wondering how did you start that journey of self-love?

Amanda Winwood
So I think where, where does the journey of self-love start? I think probably when we’re we’re all little, we, you know, when we’re fumbling around and we’re really little and  we actually love ourselves.

I mean, as a child, I don’t know many children who, who sort of, when, you know, really early formative years, aren’t just, we love ourselves. But, so, so to answer your question, I think, an awareness of, of, of. Of gifting time probably started with, I, I still have a very vivid memory of being a seven year old child with my mum taking me  along to, yoga classes, in the heart of Cheshire with possibly one of the only Indian ladies who was in Cheshire at the time. Cause it was not multicultural at all in Cheshire, and this beautiful Indian lady moved to, our village where I was brought up and mum, my lovely mom, started yoga classes with her.

And, and got a group of women to go and do yoga. And as a, a seven year old child, I remember going to Mare’s house. And I remember watching these women. Stressed Housewives and, and, and sitting at the back of, of this, this room, cause I was pretty sickly as a child on and off, and, and I remember walking in and the center of spices that warm spices and in this house that’s and, and, and Mare’s, studio was full of light.

And, and I watched these women as a seven year old child. I still remember watching these women have an hour, of, and I’d see them move  from being, tensed and, and you know, all this sort of thing to just being serene. So I think there’s a, there’s a nugget Julia inside from there. That’s probably sat there, a little nugget from being a seven year old, but I think my You know, as a, I went through quite a, a challenging childhood.

My mum left, our family home when I was 13 to run off to Spain, to live with an artist. And, my dad was, not the easiest man at all to live with. He hadn’t been very involved in, in, in Kate, my sister or my upbringing. So he was pretty hopeless and could be very aggressive at times. And, and, and, and so I think that, you know, in, in terms of self-love, I don’t think I loved myself very much as a teenager.

Because I, you know, I was left with, well, why did mum leave us? And all of that kind of thing. And, and my, why is dad being like this? So I think probably it took me really until my, probably my thirties to actually go to stand in front of a mirror.

And, and I, I, I was, I was working, I was signed up to do some training. Cause I was really interested, started to be really interested in how does the brain affect your behavior? And I’d studied, to be a massage therapist and done all sorts of interesting work, which again was probably rooted in wellbeing.

But I, I, I do remember sort of taking a long, hard look at myself in my thirties thinking, you know, I think it’s probably, you’ve done enough beating yourself up for who you are and it’s about time you actually. Just need to go. You’re okay. And I reflected on some of the stuff that I’d done. That was pretty amazing. You know, launching, I launched corporate hospitality on to tower bridge and I did all sorts of. Raise their fundraising and all sorts of things. And I thought, you know what? You’re okay, actually.

So please don’t, you know, and don’t let your childhood and all these feelings that you had as, as being, not good enough because of your childhood to, to, to, to create a future history that you don’t want. Create your future history.

So I think it started Julia really when I was in my thirties that I started to, to really do the work. And I think possibly, you know, some young women will we’ll start down this. Maybe I’ve seen my. My Hannah in her early twenties start a real massive transformation that there’s still, I think when you’re in your early twenties, it’s you said something earlier, Julia, or, you know, we go round trying to please other people and live up to expectations and so on and so forth.

And I think until you go through that and have had a big chunk of a journey in life and are in your sort of mid twenties, maybe for me personally, it was my early thirties that I just, well, I actually, Amanda Jane, you need to live your life and you need to be proud of the woman that you are. So there you go.

Stacie Clark
How powerful was that?

That was really beautiful. And. Yeah, that’s something you said there that I feel like really resonated around needing to go through those experiences. That feels like something that I’ve been reflecting on quite a bit recently. Of like all this, all the things that I’ve experienced in life and all the things that I’ve been through that have been painful and that have felt like a struggle.

I’ve been sitting here recently thinking like, There are lessons within all of that. And I’ve had to have experienced all those things for me to learn important aspects about who I am and what I’m capable of and what I’m here to be, who I’m here to be. So, yeah, it was really beautiful. Thank you for sharing that.

Julia LeGallo
Thank you. Yeah. I feel very much the same, around exactly that thought, that thing that you said around the experiences that it’s, It’s also building ourselves and becoming, through all those experiences that we go through to actually get to a point where you decide where, which direction you want to take from all the information that you’ve gathered and all the emotions you’ve experienced.

So, yeah. That’s thank you for sharing that, Amanda. I think that that definitely resonated with me and I’m sure it will resonate with others.

Stacie Clark
Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. I’m sure there’s a lot of people listening to this right now going. Oh God. Yeah. And if not, then perhaps, you know, starting to offer a bit of a different perspective on perhaps some of the things that people have experienced in life.

Julia LeGallo
Yeah. There’s a lot to do here, around letting go of the, of the past as well. Which, which I feel is also part of the journey of self-love. Though I do find it’s quite hard to do. I still feel that it feels to me, Amanda, that there’s also this, this part of letting go process that goes on to love ourselves, our present selves a bit more.

Amanda Winwood
Definitely. And I think, you know, it’s  yeah. Well, we start off and we, if we in, in life and we take our first steps and we’re light and we skip along, don’t we as children and then we hit school. And then what happens at school is, is, I think we start to accumulate the baggage of life. So, you know, if you’re brilliant at school, and you you’re made to stand up in the, in the class because you’ve achieved an a in, in a, in, in your exam or something like that. And your best friend got D you, you kind of think, Ooh, I did so well. And then you said, Oh God, I feel so bad because my best friend didn’t do so well. And now I think maybe I shouldn’t do so well.

And, and, you know, we, we accumulate all these. This baggage and peop, people’s expectations, our expectations of ourself, things that have hurt us, people, things that we’ve done that we think may have hurt others.

And we, we carry this thing that becomes a great, huge, heavy rucksack full of bricks. And actually it’s a joy to skip through life. So I highly recommend that. If, if you have a, if you have a, a huge break rucksack that represents the baggage of life with all your hurts and pains and grief and sadness, take it off your back, dump it on the side of the road and skip along away from it and say goodbye.

Thank you very much. You’re gone.

Stacie Clark
That’s amazing again, that just reminds me of a practice that I did a couple of years ago that involved, visualizing, carrying a backpack that had loads of limiting self-beliefs in and then taking off that backpack, putting it down and picking up a new one that had loads of like more nicer beliefs and a new story about myself.

So yeah, I like that. And again it still, still it can be a challenging process and one that can take time.

Amanda Winwood
None of this is simple, you know.  It’s easy to talk about it, but it it’s, it’s it’s, it’s like everything in life it’s, it’s having a self-awareness and, and, and being kind to yourself, maybe, you know, maybe there should be a new word and we all talk about mindfulness.

Maybe it should be kindfulness. Maybe, maybe we should, the act of kindfulness, where we’re kind to ourselves and, and, and maybe that sits alongside mindfulness, but it’s just, I’m going to be aware and I’m going to be kind to myself because I deserve it.

Stacie Clark
And we all deserve it.

Amanda Winwood
We do. As the famous words of that advert for some makeup brand, isn’t it?  Because I’m worth it.

Stacie Clark
Oh yeah. L’Oreal.  I think, I think we mean  Made for Life.

Amanda Winwood
The art of kindfulness. That’s what  we need to do.

Julia LeGallo
That’s beautiful.

That’s good, that’s a good word.

Stacie Clark
So Amanda, just to start wrapping things up, what, what words  of kindness do you have that you could extend to, to our quiet community and to those who are listening to this podcast right now?

Amanda Winwood
Well, I’ve mentioned my very lovely, spirited mum who decided that she was going to be brave and follow her her life, where from being deeply unhappy and so on. And, and she, she wrote me,a long poem, not long before my 16th birthday and, and, she wrote it and she died about three weeks after she wrote it. So, but you know, the words have stayed with me like an anchor and there’s some wisdom there.

So I thought I’d share them because I think they will resonate with, with some of some people listening. I hope they resonate. They’ve been, they’ve been my anchor from, from 16 year old. And whenever I felt adrift, I’ve come back to these words. So I’m just going to share.  A couple of passages from the poem that she wrote me, if that’s okay.

Julia LeGallo
Absolutely.

Amanda Winwood
So, so what she said was she said,

Have confidence
Be brave in this wide world.
Fear nothing, for fear is a canker, which knaws at the core and damages the fruit.

But fill your heart with love,
For love. Is it the root of all life’s joy and mystery.

Stacie Clark
I love that.

Julia LeGallo
That’s beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing that.

Amanda Winwood
It’s a pleasure. And I think that, you know, for me, that kind of sums it up and the self-love is love for love is at the root of all life’s joy and mystery for yourself and for others.

Stacie Clark
Well, that seems like a really lovely place to, to end this conversation, although I’m sure there is so much more that we could all be talking about.

So thank you so much, Amanda, for coming on and sharing all of your beauty and your wisdom with us all. And thank you Julia for co-hosting with me today. It’s been such a pleasure speaking with you both.

Amanda Winwood
Oh, it’s a pleasure, thank you.

Julia LeGallo
It’s been great. Thank you very much

Amanda Winwood
Thank you for inviting me. You’re very beautiful. And for anybody who’s listening, you need to say this to yourself.

I love you. And it’s going to be okay.

Stacie Clark
I love you and it’s going to be okay. Wow. Powerful words at the end, there.

It’s easy for us to underestimate the impact our choice of words have on us and how we feel about ourselves. But science has proven that words that are rooted in love, compassion and joy have a higher vibration that rings throughout our bodies, which directly impacts our energy and our emotions.

So have a go at repeating those words to yourself on a daily basis with an open mind and an open heart, and just simply explore how that feels for you and with time, what difference it makes.

We can’t wait to share next week’s episode with you, out on Tuesday. So be sure to tune in again and in the meantime, stay connected.

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