Your path to purpose Interview Series - Joanne Bradford
This week I'm back with another interview, yuppy!
A little introduction on what this series is all about ...
I decided to chat with some inspiring like-minded people about their path to purpose.
Yes the path, because the final destination, the big passion we're looking for that gives purpose to our life, it's just an excuse to live the path! And in this journey there are inevitable moments of transition that are there to teach us something and clarify the direction we're going.
It's exciting , isn't it? But also deeply stressful and destabilizing and sometimes it can feel lonely and confusing, that's why I decided to interview some wonderful inspiring people to let you know that you're not alone and that what you're feeling in this very moment is totally ok.
Today's guest is the gorgeous Joanne Bradford from https://www.motherheart.co and I'm super duper excited and honored she has so graciously accepted to chat with me! I met Joanne in London in 2016 during one of her workshops for the presentation of her book The Inner Fix (that she wrote with another awesome lady Persia Lawson) and I was immediately impressed by her transition from acting career to healing practitioner and I really resonated with her soft and naturally healing energy, so I am very happy I had another occasion to connect with her and share her wisdom with all of you !
First of all tell us a little about who you are.
Born in the north of England. Former actress. Extroverted introvert. Emotionally perceptive (I like so, anyway.) Direct, sometimes overly so. London has been my home for almost a decade. I have a black and white fluffy cat called Nancy. I’ve been sober from drugs and alcohol for over five years. I got married two and a half years ago. I have a growing faith in a power greater than myself, I call that power God. I recently co-wrote a book called The Inner Fix. I describe my professional work as ‘emotional healing’. I’m all about what’s going on the inside - that’s what most interests me.
How did you get to where you are now? In particular if you can tell us about a life or career transition that really affected who you are today.
I think the biggest career transition so far happened in my mid-twenties, after I’d spent several years pursuing a career in acting. Between the ages of 18-21 I trained at one of London’s top drama schools and had signed with a very good agent upon graduation. In the years that followed that, I gave it my all; my life and self-worth were entirely focused on becoming successful in the acting industry. However, the harder I tried to make doors open, the more they seemed to shut in my face. Eventually, I reached a place where I felt so miserable that I decided to surrender my own will; forcing the situation just wasn’t working for me.
I gradually became open to the idea that perhaps there were different plans for my life and how I’d be useful to the world.
I made a commitment to go with the flow and simply follow what was unfolding before me. As soon as I made this decision, it was as if the Universe (or God) started to work on my behalf - guiding my way.
This led to setting up a lifestyle movement with my close friend, landing a book deal and retraining as an emotional wellbeing therapist. The work that I’m doing today is an extension of this.
What were the fears that came up in that moment?
Firstly, I had to overcome my own pride. I’d spent my entire life confidently declaring that I was going to be an actress and suddenly I had to let go of the identity that I’d created for myself.
I actually think I was more concerned about what other people would make of this decision, than anything else - which is all about pride and ego.
That certainly brought up fear in me. I felt insecure about ‘giving up’ and backtracking on the vision I’d shared for my life.
The other fear that came up quite strongly was that it wasn’t going to work out, that I’d take a bold leap and I’d spectacularly fail.
But, you know what? When you choose to follow your inner guidance, I think you can only gain and grow from the experience - even if it ends up working out differently to how you expected. I don’t believe God guides us to take leaps of faith in vain, there’s always a bigger purpose to His plans.
How did you overcome them?
I dealt with my pride firstly by identifying it was there and then realising that most people were far too busy focusing on their own lives to be worrying about my choices.
People are just not as invested in our life decisions as we might like to think!
I dealt with my fear of failing by reminding myself that failure is always a possibility and that it was ultimately beyond my control. I could only commit to doing my best.
It’s completely possible to fail at something you don’t want to be doing in life (many people do), so I figured I’d rather take the risk at failure at something that I cared about!
What was the biggest lesson you got out of the experience?
To stand in my truth, be brave and to trust the process.
The world and its pressures can be so loud that it can be hard to hear the quiet, still voice inside each one of us. But if you listen, it’s always there.
What advice would you share to someone going through a similar transition?
Quoting the poet Mary Oliver, I’d ask this question:
“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”
I just believe that we were put on earth to do work that ignites us and allows us to feel useful and of purpose in some way. Getting to do that thing full-time can take a lot of work but, if you want it, it is entirely possible.
Do you have any rituals or routines that support you during times of change?
Many! Getting proper sleep. Leaning into prayer and my spiritual life.
Remembering to let go of my own agenda and to follow the guidance that only comes to me when I ask for it and allow it in (*I constantly have to come remember to do this because I’m very good at paving my own way, using self-will!)
Being around people who believe in and encourage me. Running outdoors, to focus my mind. Writing to-do lists. Keeping it in the day, instead of looking too far into the future.
What are the things that light you up in life at the moment?
Having space for myself. Like my mother, I’m naturally a ‘do-er’ and can easily become a busy bee. Nothing lights me up more right now than having some down-time to do as I wish and recharge my batteries. I’ve started actively scheduling in ‘space to do nothing’ in my diary - it’s working wonders for me!
What does living a life on purpose looks like for you today?
Following the callings of my heart. By that I mean getting clear on what I personally care about - what makes me sad, mad and glad. If I’m pursuing things that speak to my heart (either by following my joy or assisting others who are suffering), I feel purposeful and like I’m using my time here on earth for something worthwhile.
Finally, can you share what's next into your work and how people can get involved?
I run one-to-one life-consultancy and emotional healing sessions from a beautiful therapy space in Mayfair, London. More information about this is available via my website: https://www.motherheart.co/onetoone-sessions
I offer a 6-week one-to-one Intensive program via Skype. https://www.motherheart.co/6week-inner-fix
I am co-creator of Heart Rehab, a 21-day online program to heal from heartbreak. http://heart-rehab.com
My book, The Inner Fix, is available online and at all major bookstores. http://amzn.eu/3zun0z4
Aww there are so many gems into this interview, this lady is such an inspiration and I love how she speaks directly and honestly about her path and her moments of doubt.
In particular I loved how she shared the moment in which she became aware and at ease with the fact that she was destined to something different than acting, how many of us get attached to our initial path and find it hard so open the horizons towards what's really calling us and witnessing how supported we are by the Universe when we let the ego on the side and start following what feels good!
And I was nodding my head so much when she shared that nothing lights her up more than having some down time to recharge her batteries and creating white space in her calendar for just being, yes sister !
Connect with Joanne on social media :
WEBSITE : www.motherheart.co
TWITTER & INSTAGRAM : @motherheart
Share your favorite nugget of wisdom in the comments below and let's have a conversation. Are you currently going through a life or career transition? What is coming up for you ? Looking forward to connect!
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