Every week, we get to share this space with an inspiring woman from the health, wellness and self development community. It is such a lovely opportunity to be able to connect and build with so many compelling women from around the world as they follow their passion. This Wednesday, we give thanks for Madeline Charles, a clinical social worker, sharing her journey with us.
My story is one losing myself to misalignment in work and relationship, and the journey of coming home to myself by peeling back the layers of identity that were held up by fear, to see what was waiting for me at my core. I am a licensed clinical social worker and practice therapy from a holistic wellness standpoint. I am passionate about holding space and creating a safe environment for women to heal from trauma and step into their full power. I am now transitioning into life coaching, as I feel limited by the traditional medical model of psychotherapy. I am determined to live out my life purpose and work, which is to empower women to authentically design their lives based on the use of intuition and holistic wellness tools.
Passion Yoga School: How do you use your work as a spiritual tool?
Madeline: My work is my highest spiritual expression. The gifts of working in this capacity are not only seeing the transformation in my clients, but also the increased personal insight and awareness that comes from having my own dark spots be illuminated by what comes up for me in such personal work with others.
PYS: The cracks are how the light gets in. Tell us how your core wounds have inspired your work.
Madeline: My core wounds have absolutely inspired my work. My personal journey of transformation has given me the first hand perspective to understand what is needed to endure deep healing and change. I use my personal experiences as illustrations for the holistic wellness tools I use and teach.
PYS: What is your worst habit and what are you doing to improve it?
Madeline: My worst habit right now (it's always changing as I evolve) is falling into the lack cycle, or doubting my self-worth. I've been digging deep into my soul to get real about where these stories came from, and have been allowing space for witnessing and healing these places within that needed to be worked through. As I write in my blog, the most effective thing I've found, is to create space and honor the process of peeling back the layers. Grounding into the deep knowing and trusting that as a spiritual being, a reflection of the infinite, there is no lacking, and that self-doubt is a fear-based illusion. There's only the process of stepping into full potential and getting comfortable with the fact that we're all so much bigger and more powerful than we often allow ourselves to be.
PYS: What advice would you offer to other goddesses working to actualize their potential?
Madeline: My advice would be to do the difficult work, and find your truth. Take a hard look at yourself, your patterns, the stories you tell yourself, your resistance to moving forward. Peel back the layers, explore and embrace your core self. Figure out what works for you, listen to your intuition. Learn how to co-create your deepest desires with the universe/source, and trust in your unfolding to reach your highest potential.
PYS: What does your daily spiritual practice look like?
Madeline: My daily spiritual practice begins with either silent meditation or a visualization focused on manifestation, depending on the energy I'm in. I then do a sequence of yoga stretches. I am often using mindfulness throughout the day and checking in with myself if I feel emotionally triggered, to address it as it comes up in the moment. I attend yoga classes 4-5 times/week, and gratitude journal every night. I keep up on manning physical clutter to create the physical space for my spiritual growth, cook most meals at home as part of consciously caring for my body, and gratitude journal nightly.
PYS: What secrets (past or present) have kept you from living in your truth?
Madeline: We often hide our shame and shadows from others, when these experiences are very often the fuel that manifests our destiny. Have you hidden from anything within you that has held you back in actualizing full self love?
I've realized that from an early age I have tried to "play small", keeping my gifts and life purpose minimized. I also had a relationship in which I did not live out my values or express my needs, and essentially lost myself in that process. My ability to embrace self-love has grown tremendously since working through these areas of my life. I think more than anything, I've kept my full potential a secret from myself. It can feel terrifying to let yourself fully believe you're capable of creating everything you desire, but it is the most liberating thing to do so.
PYS: Who inspires you? Who should we interview next?
Madeline: My mentor Wendy Collier is a huge inspiration for me. Women who unapologetically stand strong in their convictions and are working for a collective consciousness of good, are those who illuminate my path. I honor any woman who speaks from her own experiences and shadows to demonstrate how she has risen up and is now living her full truth.