Every week, we are so incredibly blessed to share this space with some of the incredible women from the health, wellness and personal development community. This is our chance to connect and collaborate with some amazing ladies from around the world as they follow their passion. This Wednesday, we are pleased to welcome Heather Waxman to the blog!
Hi! My name is Heather Waxman and really, I am a truth-seeker. In myself, in everything I do, and in everyone I meet, I seek truth. Deep, but true. In the professional realm, I am an Amazon best-selling author, spiritual life coach, meditation guide, and singer-songwriter. My super power is helping women unpack and transform their emotional + behavioral patterns through spiritual practice, song, and meditation. It is my heartfelt belief that when we can clean up our thoughts and clean up our energy bodies of these subconscious memories and patterns, we can live truly radiant + peaceful lives.
Passion Yoga School: How do you use your work as a spiritual tool?
Heather Waxman: My work is always my spiritual tool because it helps me to see myself in the other person, and that amps up my compassion for myself, for my clients, and for my loved ones. What I teach my clients I have healed or am still transforming within myself. My clients are absolute treasures to me, and they inspire me to show up even more fully for myself.
PYS: The cracks are how the light gets in. Tell us how your core wounds have inspired your work.
Heather: We are all cracked. Ha! But seriously...we are. That's what we have in common. That's what we share. We need to have the courage to take off the masks of "I am this" or "I am that" and show up...just as you IN your own energy. That is enough.
My core wounds have inspired every single area of my work. And they continue to. After struggling for 7 years with anorexia nervosa, over-exercising, and binge eating and trying one outpatient treatment form and therapy after another, I was getting nowhere. My soul was crying out for something more. So, I cried and I asked and I was led to commit to a spiritual practice recovery program.
I stumbled my way through and when I finally felt food and body freedom three years later, wrote BODYpeace with my dear friend Kasey Arena, which is our 30-day guidebook to finding lasting peace with food and your body. We used our deep struggles with food and exercise addiction to help those going through it too pair spiritual practice and practical action steps together for a deep, nourishing, and pleasure-filled plan to lasting transformation in your mind and body.
PYS: What is your worst habit and what are you doing to improve it?
Heather: Jealousy. When I was younger and all the way through college, I felt like an outcast. I had friends but never had a *core* group of friends that made me feel like I belonged. I was constantly putting on certain masks so that I could be accepted into a certain group, instead of allowing myself to express myself fully as I was. I did the same with my family, taking on the role of "the co-dependent good girl." I was a hot mess, really.
This constant striving to be something I wasn't made me feel like I wasn't good enough and I would inevitably end up resenting someone in my group of friends or family, or idolizing someone and putting them on a pedestal. I went through this nasty cycle of idolizing someone and then hating them - making them special and then making myself special. I did this for 22 years, and I do my best to be patient with myself when it happens. But sometimes, I'm very hard on myself. That being said, I've come light years from where I was and I credit this practice to moving through jealousy:
1.) Activate your awareness.
When I can first become aware of the jealousy, I can allow it to begin to transform.
2.) Feel the jealousy.
This can be the hardest part for me. I can get very hard on myself and judge myself for feeling jealous, which only allows the feeling to persist. I'm working on it.
3.) Allow the jealousy to be a flashlight for you, shining a big spotlight on your own potential.
When I'm jealous of someone, it's because I'm feeling insecure and holding onto a belief that I'm not worthy of having what I admire in someone else. So, I tell myself this mantra: "I believe, I can, I am" and I tell the person who is triggering jealousy in me, "You believe, you can, you are. Thank you."
4.) Forgive yourself.
This is everything. Forgiveness is what sets me free from the chains of that jealousy and resentment and idolatry. I close my eyes, hold my younger self that doesn't feel valued (sometimes she's 6 and sometimes she's 26), and tell her that it's okay to be herself and that she has done nothing wrong. My favorite mantra for this is, "You've done nothing wrong. I forgive you."
PYS: What advice would you offer to other goddesses working to actualize their potential?
Heather: Let your emotions guide you instead of letting your emotions destroy you.
PYS: What does your daily spiritual practice look like?
Heather: I truly consider my life my spiritual practice BUT there are some more structured things that I do on the daily to keep myself feeling calm, confident and connected.
In the morning, I wake up and make some hot lemon water and then go to my meditation space with my cat (depending on the day, she will sit on my lap).
I'm currently practicing an amazing Kundalini yoga kriya called Morning Kriya, which cleans the energy centers, balances the digestive and nervous systems, and sets the navel center (solar plexus area) so I can be strong, clear-headed, and focused throughout my day. I'll then workout and break a sweat in some form.
I am a devoted Kundalini yogi, so I take another 90 minutes in the middle of the day to practice a full Kundalni yoga kriya. This is really important for me, since I'm constantly interacting with other people's energy fields and working directly on them. My spiritual practice is numero uno. When I do it, I'm me. When I don't, I'm not me.
PYS: What secrets (past or present) have kept you from living in your truth?
Heather: I am a deeply sensitive person, and for so long I would beat myself up and ask myself, "What is wrong with me?" because I could just feel everything so deeply - my own feelings and emotions, the feelings and emotions of others, the energy of the room, the energy of the world in general.
Before I came to committed spiritual practice, I had no idea what was going on inside of me and that's why I turned to addiction. I had to cope somehow, so I coped in the best way that I knew how. I felt so ashamed of being "weak" and feeling things so deeply. I never talked about it. Now, I am proud of being so sensitive and I know it to be my greatest strength. It helps me heal and understand myself and, therefore, be able to understand others and help them heal too. My sensitivity is my compass through life.
PYS: Who inspires you?
Heather: Oh man. Do you have a year? Ha!
I admire people - especially women - who are fierce and graceful truth-seekers. As of late, my teacher Guru Jagat has been my greatest inspiration. She is a remarkable teacher of the technology of Kundalini yoga and endlessly inspires me in how she lives, loves, and leads her life. She shakes me awake every time. Also, my dear friend Devin Harris. She is a devoted mom and healer, and the way she gives of herself, nurtures herself, and cares for her son kind of blows my mind. You should totally interview them both. The incredible musician Tori Kelly is also a massive inspiration of mine.