how to let go of body obsession and FINALLY accept your body - with Madison Ayers

podcast Jul 21, 2020

I’m so excited to introduce this sweet angel to you today! Madison Ayers and I have SO much in common and if you’ve ever struggled with your relationship with food or your body, you’re really going to relate to her story too. Like me, healing her relationship with food and her body unlocked her spiritual journey and allowed her to fully step into her power and purpose. And in this episode, we’re going to help you do the same!


In this episode, you'll learn:

✧ Why changing your environment NEVER fixes the issues you have with food
✧  What to do if you hit a plateau in your healing and feel stuck
✧  How to silence and challenge your negative thoughts about food and your body
✧  The danger of using self-help as a means to make you more worthy
✧   The KEY to making new thoughts and habits around food and your body stick
✧   Why intuitive eating and body acceptance isn’t just a physical journey
✧   How to use your addictive/obsessive personality as a superpower
✧   How to tap into your higher self so you can expand your mindset and life


Guest Bio:

Madison Ayers is a body acceptance and self-love enthusiast who is on a mission to help women heal the relationship that they have with their body. Through years of self-study and spiritual exploration, she’s created a powerful process that empowers others to move from self-doubt and self-deprecation to wholly accepting and loving all that they are and came here to be - body included. She now teaches other women how to foster this relationship within themselves, so that they can move beyond the obsession with the physical self and reclaim a connection with the higher self.


🔮 Resources:


🔮 Mentioned in the episode:

The Body Bliss Starter Guide


Madison's website

Madison's Instagram


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I am sooo grateful for you listening today. If this resonated with you, it would mean the world to me if you’d leave a review on itunes. Everyone’s invited to the afterparty which takes place every day on instagram @madison.arnholt so come hang out with us there.


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Full Episode Transcript:

Hi. So here we are. How are you, Madison?


I'm good. How are you, Madison? I'm good.


It's so funny. Just a couple of Madison's chillin talking about cool stuff. I love it. I'm so excited to have you here. I'm so excited. You reach out to me that one day on Instagram because I feel like we have really similar stories experiences, mesh messages to share. So I'm really excited to dive together today and just share those. So let's just go ahead and dive right in. So can you tell us a little bit more about who are you what do you do? What's your story? What got you to be doing what you do today?


Yes, absolutely. Um, so I guess I'll start sort of at the beginning, which was when I started to have a complicated relationship with my body, which I was really young, but I don't think that I'm unique in that which is really unfortunate but true. So when I was When I kind of started to become aware of how I felt in my body and really start to have an opinion about my body, and I'm a very extreme person, and I'm just kind of like a zero to 60 kind of gal. And so I started to show signs of developing an eating disorder pretty quickly. And my mom is really into and she had three daughters, and she's super in tune with all three of her girls. And so she noticed pretty quickly, which I'm really thankful about, but she sort of said, Oh, my gosh, this is an issue. We got to like, get this girl some help. And so that was when I had my first round of essentially, like, outpatient treatment where I would go to a couple appointments a week. And how old were you that 10 Oh, still 10 Okay, by that point, I might have been 11




Sorry, I had to unplug something. I apologize.


It's all good. No one can see you on video. So what is happening I'm like watching like dive under the desk. like, Okay, here we go. I was


like, I wonder.


Okay, so you were 10.


So this might have been 1110 or 11. But I was in sixth grade when this first happened. And then it was sort of throughout that time period, like middle school through high school, I would go in phases of getting a little bit worse than then getting a little bit better. And it oftentimes coincided with, you know, going into middle school with sixth grade and then going into high school and then going into college. So I had a couple different bouts of doing like, sort of DIY outpatient treatment where I would go to a couple appointments a week. But when I went to college, my freshman year, it got pretty bad because, I mean, obviously, when


you go into college, it's already sort of like a change as can help eating disorders flare up. Can I pause you for a second I'm


here as low battery


There's nothing to be embarrassed about. Okay, good. Go do your thing.


We'll be right back. Okay. I just looked up it was like now. All right


after this, we should be good to go.


Okay, cool. Yeah, my assistant can edit it out. So she.


Oh. All right.


I think we're good to go.


Okay, cool. Um, okay, I'm gonna pause for a few seconds so she can edit easily and then all like, bring us back into the conversation.




Okay, so we're back, Madison had to get her charger, but it's all good. We're here again. Okay, so you were saying so, freshman year of college, when you went into that transition, things started flaring up and getting like pretty bad around that point.


Yes. And I was in a sorority, which for some people is an amazing environment, but for someone that was already prone to having an eating disorder, it obviously brought a lot of stuff up. And so that's my probably thought to what I thought at that point was like my lowest low and I was like, Okay, I think that it's time for me to sort of create some change for myself. So I went home for the summer after my first year of college and wanted to be healthy. And so I kind of started to be a little bit more intentional about wanting to heal the relationship with my body. And then when I went back for my sophomore year, I at that point in time was only at school for four days of the year and I had this really overwhelming feeling. I was like, I'm not supposed to be here right now, like, this is not where I belong. And at that point, I didn't really have any sort of spiritual practice or really a relationship with anything beyond or higher than me whatsoever. And so I was listening to my intuition, but I didn't know what that was. And so it almost felt just like being compulsive and like making an impulsive


decision and be like, Yeah, sometimes our intuition feels very irrational. Oh, yeah.


Oh, yeah. And there was a lot of like, Oh my god, what are you doing but it was just this overwhelming. I was like, I cannot I can not supposed to be here. And so I left kind of with the intention of being like this isn't a healthy environment for me and thinking that if I switched my environment, I would be able to get better faster. Silly me for thinking that it was environmental when it's obviously something that goes a lot deeper. And so once I got back home and I was going to a community college, I I don't even know when the transformation happened. But up until that point I had, it was anorexia that I was struggling with. And it it morphed into Alenia. And that was when it became this like overwhelming, like, Oh my gosh, something needs to change because it got to the point where it's when you're restricting, it's not so much taking time out of your day, but when you're binging and purging is extremely consuming. And so my dad, I think, at this point, I was 20. Between, I think it was 2122 ish. And so it was in 2012. And my dad said, you know, I'm going to give you sort of one more shot at this because it's expensive to send someone to an eating disorder treatment. And so he said, and he's like, you can either use the tools that I'm giving you now and change your life or live this way. And so the thought of having an eating disorder, you know, when I was 46 years old, was terrifying. And so I finally, like I just dug in, and I did the work and I did a lot of really heavy lifting in our work and I was able to heal my eating disorder. And by the time that I exited the outpatient treatment, I no longer had a clinical eating disorder, which was wonderful, obviously. But also I reached this like plateau where I like did all of this work healed my eating disorder. And then for probably a year or two really didn't do a whole lot and was just sort of stagnant. And I remember my dad asking me at one point, he was like, so like, how are you doing? And I was like, Oh, I'm great. I'm just like every other woman in America basically, like, I think about my food and body a lot. But like, I was like, happy with the status quo, essentially. And I started to like, think about that a little bit more. And I was like, wait a minute, why is that where I stop? Like, why do I get to this point where I'm like, sort of quietly suffering, but it's not loud enough to be like, Oh, this person has a problem. And so I became sort of just aware of like, There's more to me and beyond me that I haven't explored yet and that I didn't even know existed because I was always in this really eating disordered place and didn't really want to break beyond that. So it was like I got to this plateau, and I could feel this, like expansion coming on. And so I started just getting really curious about like spirituality. And I think that I'm kind of lucky because I wasn't raised with any religion whatsoever. And so I was a total blank slate. And so I didn't have to do any sort of like unlearning, I was able to just sort of go out and discover what I believed. And so I found a Gabby Bernstein book, which like classic gateway drug, I feel,


like just 100% she's like the greatest gateway drug into spirituality, which is a funny, I don't even know if you would call that metaphor, but it's funny how you say that because she was like addicted to drugs and like, it is such an addiction to have an eating disorder. So it's so funny that like, you naturally thought of that as like a gay drug to spirituality, it


really is just fitting. And it's so good too, because I think that like, having an addictive personality is the ability to really focus and dive deep into something. And so it's like, I jokingly will say like, Oh, I just learned to use my powers for good instead of evil because I still have like a very sort of, like, eye on the prize won't drop the bone sort of like obsessive tendencies but when they're applied to something like bettering yourself and you know, self improvement and learning more about spirituality and getting to know yourself, it's like, that's not a bad thing to be like, quote unquote, addicted to I mean, it's a fine line though, because sometimes I feel like with self love, we can almost judge ourselves and we don't do well enough, which is the opposite of what self love is. So, I mean, that's a tangent, but yes, it is. It is good when it's applied to things that are, you know, useful. Um, but I had this sort of like, natural reaction to sort of getting to know myself on a more spiritual level and starting to meditate and get Silent and really sort of like, opened up to who I was beyond just my body and like the physical, like identification of who I've called Madison up until that point. And just naturally my obsession with my body and the way that I look just sort of started to fade away. Like the more that I spent time in this sort of like in my soul space, the less I knew myself, I was only my body. And so I realized it was one day and meditation and I had always kind of thought that I wanted to be in the wellness space, but I also didn't know what that looked like because it is kind of an abstract thing, especially like coming out of college. You're not


like, Oh, I'm gonna be like a life coach type thing. And yeah,


goodness. And so I just sort of


like but I just graduated with a different degree. I know Yeah,


yes, straight and narrow path. And so for a while, my spirituality and self development was just sort of like recreational, you know, like I wasn't doing it professionally in any way. But I had this huge like awakening for myself, I'm like, okay, that's how you actually come home to your body is by exceeding it's who you are beyond it so that you love it as a piece of who you are an extension of who you are, but not like the end all be all. And so, I was meditating one day, and it just sort of like, struck me. Like, I was like, I am supposed to teach what I've learned about going through the entire journey with my own body, and how I was able to get to know myself beyond my body and how that actually healed my relationship with my physical self. And so I like came out of meditation was like journaling for hours and then boom, there was the birth of my little baby business and because I really do think that like, that's the secret sauce. It's never I mean, and I know that you know, this also just with your work, but like, losing weight doesn't fix anything. Like it doesn't actually make you happy and it doesn't actually give you sustainable results. That will Make you okay with the way that you are, it's like


exactly nothing outside of you can


nothing, no, there's no way especially when it's being judged on something that is such a small portion of who you are. It's like you can't fix this one part of yourself and expect to love the entirety of who you are when you're so much more beyond your body. And not just that, like, when that's your primary identity, it takes up so much space, because you're only worried about fixing or changing this one part of you. So there's all of these other like beautiful elements that just get completely disregarded. And there's this like, power that you have that you can't tap into when you're constantly consumed with thinking about or trying to change the way that you look. And I think that when you're in that space, where you're always focusing on the way that you look, you you almost don't notice all of the other possibilities that your life has and all of the other like gifts that you can tap into to create a beautiful life because you're so consumed with just this one. Little aspect of you. So totally, like, everybody needs to frickin know this every woman in the world needs to know that they don't have to think about their body all the time because it's actually blocking them from like, this raw, beautiful woman and like that's a beautiful woman, not one that's like, perfectly polished and like looks exactly like how they're told to


100% I did such a similar experience where I was like, Oh my God, why did nobody ever tell me this growing up like, I cannot believe it. I have found gold I must tell the entire world. Everyone needs to know that this is possible and that you don't have an eating disorder for the rest of your life and some people I'd be curious to hear your thoughts on this. You know, a lot of people say like, oh, you're never fully recovered from your eating disorder. But to be honest, I think that's a terribly limiting mindset. Like I I'm fully recovered. I have friends who are fully recovered and it's like, yeah, maybe it depends on your definition of fully recovered, but are you creating an unbeatable have recovered for yourself which is keeping you stuck in that perfection is never good enough mindset


100% and I think that also what they might even say when they're like, Oh, it's never healed is that you're you get to that plateau that I was talking about where like, more like every other woman around you and you are considered healthy and like normal by society, like society standards of healthy and normal is not completely healed, but it's what we sort of accept as like, then totally, I had another step. Like there's another stage beyond that so


many more, so many more layers, and it's the unfolding of those layers that like, unlocks the rest of your life. I that. Again, same experience, like in high school, I had an eating disorder and then in college, I thought, you know, I'm healed like I was physically Okay, and fine, but I was still thinking about food. 24 seven, and I just like didn't know that that I like thought Oh, me. Okay, I don't have all of those like super restrictive behaviors anymore therefore like I'm healed This is what life is like oh, I don't think I like it that much better. And then I like yeah realized it's like it's so much of that like inner work of like completely shattering the belief systems that you had before and completely changing the way you see and experience food and your body and life and I like you had a very like spiritual awakening throughout the process of healing my relationship with food and it was almost like healing my relationship with food like unlocked me to have a relationship with spirituality because I the same thing we're not we're both Madison we have such a similar story. But um, I Oh man, I lost my train of thought completely


killed you're here to awakening? Oh,


yes. Yes. Okay, so for me Yeah it was a spiritual awakening and it was like as I healed my relationship with food it like opened up this whole new like spiritual realm that I had never even knew existed and


it's an eye


space space yes space to like just experience everything and like a whole new light and I wasn't grown up or I didn't grow up like learning a specific religion either so I kind of had that like blank slate to which was really really cool and it's funny because a few years ago I would be like, I don't believe in religion at all. I'm not spiritual like all that's crazy. And now I'm like, so far gone in the spiritual and I love it. And honestly, it's an you'd probably agree like healing my relationship with food like truly allowed me to heal every single part of my life. And it's still like, bringing me gifts to this day, years later of allowing me to, like heal other parts of my life because I'm like, Oh, I healed my beliefs and thoughts about myself with food. Okay. I can heal my like fears and my beliefs in my business because a lot of the same stuff with food came up in the beginning of my business. And I was like applying all those same black and white mindset and behaviors that I used to apply to food. I just, like transitioned that over to my business in the beginning and I was like, okay, it's, here's another layer, like, I wasn't like, Oh, this is bad. Like, I'm not, you know, this is just who I am. I'm stuck this way. It's like, no, like, how friggin exciting? Is it that I've done this before? I know I can do it again. And this is an opportunity to unlock like an even greater part of myself.


100% when I was able to actually because I mean, you look at who you were when you were in your eating disorder even like in disordered eating that weird little like middle zone that I feel like 90% of American women are and are like, maybe Yeah. But like the ability to go from that sort of like space and to see the world through that lens and then completely rewire and shift the way that you see and experience life. It's like once you learn How malleable you really are and how malleable Your mind is like, if you're right, you can be like, wait a minute, if I can go from this person with this experience seeing the world this way and seeing myself this way, and completely shift to now where I am, like, I can change and pivot and like course correct. And


I mean, our brains can do anything, we can do anything. literally anything. It's so cool. And like, I feel like your story is especially inspiring because, I mean, it's crazy to me that your eating disorder started when you were 10 and what lasted until you're around like 21 years old, that's 11 years that's and I know maybe there's people listening who have had one for even longer and have a friend who had one for even longer maybe it's been less time it really doesn't matter how much time it's been like I honestly believe that like I don't mean in any way that anyone's should have an eating disorders meant to have one but like, I believe that that like my healing journey happened in divine timing for me and you. I wonder if you feel The same way about your journey and like all the things that you went through,


oh, 100% 100% it was funny I actually, the first podcast that I did I mentioned like that my eating disorder kind of happened because there was a lot of like things coming up at home, like my parents were starting to split up. And I sensed it because I'm a little sponge and my mom listened to it and was like, that broke my heart to like, and I knew, like I knew that but it hurt to hear you say it. And I was like, Mama, please look at where I am now, like, I would not be here, teaching this helping other women sort of wake up to the power of their own bodies and like their own innate power, really, I wouldn't have gone through that. So I would go through that 100 times over again, just to learn and have the sort of awakenings that I've had so that I can share them with other women that don't have to go to that deep dark rock bottom and like sort of accelerate the process where it's like, if you don't have to be as deep as I was, and it doesn't have to take you as long as it took me like hundred percent like I've your hand and like so. Pull you along the way and be like, Alright, let's accelerate this process. So it's like, yeah, I'm not mad. And also, that is, if that's my one trial in life so far, that is big and loud. That's okay. I can take that on to be able to help like a huge population of women that need to learn this like, It's alright, I think it can handle it, you know, so Yeah,




It was definitely in the right timing and I think that it happened for a reason and because I do feel like deep down that this is like my purpose of being on earth is to help people with this so yeah, like I do it 10 times over.


So like, I know saying like, I mean, I wouldn't I wouldn't I feel like I wouldn't be able to do anything had I not gone through all of that. I'm not saying you have to go through anything disorder to be able to do anything but like it. For me it was the, the, I guess a gateway and vessel to like, developing like spiritual practice a relationship with myself a new relationship with the world and everyone around me and just every literally everything. Yeah,


no, it helps. It's like a, like a foundation or like a formula that can be applied to other things too. It's like, once you're, like, prove to yourself that you can be in your own way, get out of your own way and then move beyond it. It's like you can keep applying that same sort of like practice to other things. So you're completely right, like how you said it with your business that you have the same sort of like limiting beliefs come up. It's like, it's the inner critic and that that puppy is insidious, like like different things. Oh my gosh, yeah. to like, see it and recognize it and get really familiar with like, the way that you target yourself. It enables you to be able to pick out where that is and to be able to not believe it easier. And just 100% knowing that like critical voice versus like the voice of your higher self or the voice of your soul and being able to really separate the two and know which is which and which one to listen to, is, it's huge like because there really is like two. I feel like almost like two parts of you that are constantly at war with each other. Yes,


it literally feels like an internal war.


And it's like, oh, no, no, I'm gonna take the nice one side because that feels way better.


Honestly, though, and it's so interesting, because it's like, oh, well, obviously, let's take the nicer one. But it's not that easy because our brains fight to keep our old beliefs our brains like want to keep us in our comfort zone. And we've been listening to the inner critic so long in our brains, like that's what's comfortable for me and like, you're trying to like, listen to this higher self. I don't know who she is. You're making me nervous. Like, take me back to what we were doing before and it's like, it's almost like I feel like it's like your brain will like claw at you to try to like, take you back. It's like, you really have to, like, develop that ability to, like, separate that part of you and be like, no, I see you, I hear you, thank you for trying to protect me. But I'm ready to move on now. Like, I'm ready to let this I feel like it's like, let this old part of you die so that you can become who you're meant to be.




it's not it's very, very, very uncomfortable for your brain to let the old version of you die because that's who you believe you are. So your brain is perceiving it as like that you're actually dying. And so she's like, no, this like, these old belief systems, this old version of you the version of you who get the systems and thoughts that aren't serving you any longer. That's what's dying. It's not you. It's just removing those things that so you can step into the truest like, version of yourself and you can like see it more clearly.


Because I remember like even being young, young and like looking in the mirror and realizing that there was a part of me that was Actually who I was, and like, being like, Oh my gosh, weird, I'm gonna like, be 31 day, you know what I mean? And like that sort of like, unchanging part of myself, I recognize, but it's like, what was like eight years old or something. And it's like, I'm not an eight year old anymore. It's the same way that you need to grow out of these versions of yourself. And I don't know why it's like, I had no problem going from, you know, 10 to 15 and 15 to 20. Like that sort of growing was very easy and accepted. But for some reason, once you reach, like, quote, unquote, an adult, it's like, why do we have to be static? It's like, you're constantly growing and evolving. And I think that I apply that to like my body to, it's like, Okay, my body I was, didn't get mad about it. Aging from eight to, you know, 15 Why do people? Why do you need to look like you did when you were 23. If you're 35 you know what I mean? Like, you're constantly growing and evolving like physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually, all of these ways that like, you can let those things go And it doesn't mean that you're not who you are anymore. It's like you still have the same essence and soul. It's just all of these extras are changing and shifting and it's kind of fun. Like it's not


so fun. I agree like purse. I'm like obsessed with personal development. I think it's like the most fun thing on the planet.




yeah, Bill. Okay, speaking of addictive, obsessive personalities, which I have definitely identified within the past, I don't want to say like, I don't want to affirm that for myself and say that so I'm not going to however I 100% have identified with that and the past and I think that like, it's funny because that energy can like, at least for me, like was with food and then I translate it into like, obsessive like being obsessive in my business and then being like, obsessive with like, self help, and I've found that for me sometimes like, I have to like rein myself. And with self help, because sometimes I'll like go like, just like, to the point where it for a while it was like self help, because this will make me worthy. So I'll help not self help because this is fun or I'm gonna grow and I'm gonna learn and, you know, this is for the purpose of growth but it was more like self help for the purpose of becoming more worthy and I feel like I've been able to now like, really pivot into it being for just like learning and growth and fun but did you ever have that experience where like, other parts of your life like besides food became something that you like needed to or thought would give you that like sense of self worth? Am I making sense


100% you're making sense and 100% Yes, I have. And I it's funny when you're like, I don't want to identify as obsessive and like addictive. I don't know. I think that as long as you're aware of it, because honestly, it's something I like about myself. because it enables me to get shit done.


Yeah I am. I can like yeah if I like want to like complete like a whole like project or like something in a day like I can sit down and like complete it in like a snap I'm still focused when I want to get some so I think you're right it's it is a superpower,


you knowing how to use it and knowing when to tap into it versus when to like, be like, oh god, I'm not the one that's in control right now. It's my weird controlling tendencies that are like, yes. Instead of like knowing when to tap into it. So that's what I think I've gotten better about is knowing when to allow that part of myself to turn on versus knowing when it's gone too far. And then being like, Okay, I need to like chill on this for a little bit. Yeah. And be get to a point where it's like, oh my gosh, I'm so obsessive about the self help that it's like, oh, we're self development sort of thing that it's like, oh, if I'm not doing the things that I think make like a good morning routine or a good this or a good that then it's like, oh, I failed that day, instead of being like, Hey, what are the things from my sort of arsenal of self development and like sort of self love that would feel good for me right now and choosing from all of them instead of feeling like I need to do all of them. So sort of, like knowing and being familiar with like, Okay, what do I need right now because like, this morning, I was in a little bit of a funk. So I did all of my steps because I needed them, you know, but it's like some mornings I'm like, in a fine mood. I'm like, I'll do two and a three or two and five, you know, yes, it's just sort of, but yes, I definitely have a tendency to like, go there. It's just being able to catch myself when I do it.


I'm the same way with my mornings like yeah, it's like intuitive mornings. Like I feel like with intuitive eating, like, I feel like that for me works best living that way in all areas of my life, being intuitive in my business, being intuitive in my relationships, being in like doing intuitive, self help intuitive morning routine because like, I feel like our intuition is truly like, the greatest source of our soul, like that core of who we are that you were talking about.


Yeah, and it always knows what you need, even when, like, the thinking mind could be like, I need to do all these things because I need to do them to be worthy. Whereas like, your soul might be like, chill lady, like, you only need to do a little bit of things tonight and just like be and be still and that is all you need to do. It doesn't have to be constant action.


Yes, I was doing a yoga video the other day and the instructor said, show up for what you need, not what you think you should know. Oh, I was like that, like literally summarizes everything in life. Um, okay, so I want to rewind a little bit back to your journey because I know a lot of women who I've coached and who I talk with, they're like, you know, a little A lot of people talk about like healing their relationship with food in their body. They're like, Oh, you know, it was a terrible shitstorm and then it was like roses and daisies, and they're like, I need to hear the middle because I don't know why they need to hear the middle. I think it's because they, they need to feel that it's possible for them. It's like, it doesn't feel possible to go from zero to 100 obviously and like it's like a mindset that makes you think you have to go from zero to 100. So I want to dive a little bit deeper into what it was like when you were like in it so what was going through your head at that time when you were like 1012 1416 like did you know like, this is an eating disorder this isn't helping me like I want to heal or did you not want to do not want help?


For a while I Honest to God that I just want liked to be thin. Like I was like No, I there's nothing going on beyond this. I just like being thin, which obviously is not true. Like there was a much deeper, deeper He


just like being thin, like, that's why I'm starving myself and throwing up all the time. Like, yeah, that's worth it.


Yeah, no Vegas


not doing anything else for me.


Oh my gosh.


And I think that honestly, that was a little bit louder to me when I did shift to Bolivia because it wasn't. It wasn't what I was used to when I was it was still serving me. And it was a coping mechanism. And I was like, Oh shit, there's something else beyond this. It's not just like, I don't like to eat very much, you know, like, so that was a big wake up call. But I knew when I was anorexic, there was always a lot of in my mind feeling like, Oh, this isn't bad enough. There's people that are worse than me like never fully admitting that it was like a real true problem. Until the bulimia kicked in, because like, you can't deny that one like that one's very, that is black Andrew Boyle.




so that was when I realized like, Oh shit, I really do need help. And it was a struggle there was it took a long time, honestly. And especially because I had both eating disorders. It was like, it was a lot to tackle and a lot to sort of work through. But I was just really intentional about once I made a decision, I knew that it wasn't going to happen overnight. Because there was a point in time I was like, Oh my god, I can't picture myself without this because it had been my identity for so long. But always doing the opposite of what an eating disorder thought was. So like, if I had the thought, like, Oh, I shouldn't eat that piece of bread. I would be like, No, it's okay. I'm going to eat a piece of bread and do the opposite of what my eating disorder voice told me to do. So there was very much so a point where those thoughts were coming up like crazy because like, you're my brain was conditioned to think that way for years and years and years, and they would come up and I would recognize it and do the opposite. And recognize it and do the opposite and recognize it and do the opposite over and over and over again until it It became so much of a habit that those original thoughts that I would need to sort of like course correct and reframe starting to fade away.


And so, repetition is so key.


So, so key so so key.


Would you say that was like your first step in healing was challenging those thoughts and those behaviors and like doing the opposite?


Oh, completely? Yeah, no, the first step is definitely like being able to even recognize them as such, like, being like, Oh, that's my eating disorder voice in my mind. And yeah, being able to sort of like, replace them and do the opposite. That was completely the first step was sort of like the rewiring or like the willingness to even do the rewiring. And knowing that it is just and I did study psychology, so I had an understanding of like, how you actually can rewire your brain and they're like neurons that fire together wire together, like I heard that in my classes. So I knew When I was doing it, I was like, Okay, I am rewiring my brain. Also, my dad actually had a really, really impressive like midlife transformation where he used to be like, really aggressive, really just like Angry super reactive you he was kind of a deck and now he's like, eat and kind and loving and I Wow, that's really, it was incredible. He's actually the one that introduced me to meditation. But he seeing him Oh, change his mind and his like, personality and everything about him. He's a completely different man than he was when I was younger. So I think that having that model of like, Oh, no, you can legitimately go from one expression of yourself to another and knowing that that sort of like radical change was possible made me like subconsciously know that it was possible for myself to to be able to really make that transition and know that it was possible for myself.


So that's like, that's like,


yeah, I feel like that's a The biggest barrier for so many people is that like, Oh, well, like it works for her works for him, you know, they could they could heal that relationship with you, but like, it's not gonna work for me.


Yeah, because you can't picture it because it's so you're so entrenched in it at the moment and it is so real to you. It's like kind of like with meditation, you know, there's the analogy of like, your mind is the sky and your thoughts are the clouds. And so like when it's raining, it's like very real, that it's raining. Like you can't deny that but it doesn't change the fact that like, there's blue sky behind the clouds. It's kind of like that. It's like when you're at a place where you have a bad relationship with your body or with food, it's like, it is your reality, like there's no denying it but if you are able to sort of like back up and get a more like expansive look at it, you can see that there's so much more to what you're just experiencing right now like this, like, go above it and see it for what it is and then once you see for what it is and like shine light on it, it diffuses it a little bit.


Totally. And like the core of who you are like,


isn't, doesn't have


disordered eating or an eating disorder. It's like, it's not whether it's possible or not, it's no it is already within you. You just have to clear out that stuff that's blocking it. Yeah, I think that's such a good reframe. I never even thought of it that way. It's like, this isn't a matter of whether it's possible or not. This is a matter of clearing out all the shift from blocked from blocking, like, blocking you from


the real, like,


the real question of who you are, which isn't worried about all that stuff and thinking about food and her body 24 seven


now and like something that I think is really powerful is like to also realize that you're not born thinking about food and your body like it's learned. And so if you can learn to get to that place, you can learn to backpedal yourself out of it, and it's like yes, sort of. Like it's almost like Have a block of swords, it's like once that that block is gone, like that layer of clouds is gone, then your higher self is able to, like flow through you and to you because it doesn't have this block anymore. And the block is like, it's almost sometimes think of my body as like a shell. And when you're so consumed with just the shell and thinking that that is sort of like the end all be all of who you are, you're not able to expand beyond it. And so it's like, your body is the clouds and then your higher self is like the sky that's behind it. But if you think that there's only clouds and it's only raining, I'm only my body, I only need to care about what I'm eating and how I look, then you aren't able to tap into all of the things that are like above and beyond just your physical self and it's such a disservice to like the entirety of


our that's such a good metaphor and way of looking at it. So what what else did that like inner work and healing journey look like for you. So you Like started challenging those behaviors doing the opposite? How did things progress after that?


So from that point is kind of when the spiritual tools started to take over, if you will, and like it was less just like in the thoughts and the way that I'm experiencing things within my own mind. And it was sort of more how I experienced like, life and the world around me, because meditation and mindfulness was huge, huge, huge, huge for me, because obviously 100% in your with the part of yourself that isn't physical. And so the more time that I spent with a part of myself that wasn't physical, the more that I was able to almost like, integrate it back into the physical world. And the more that I was aware of the parts of myself that weren't physical and sort of brought that mentality and became more present in actually like the world around me, the less I was consumed with this, like mindset that I had been living in up until this point So being really present in the world around me also helps me like be more present in my body and really applying those sort of like mindfulness tools and what it actually feels like to be mindful about the way that I felt in my body and experiencing my vessel for what it was, which is just like, a tool to like, move me from point A to point B and like, fully experience life and like to run and walk and jump and play. And instead of thinking, like, Oh, this needs to be something that's constantly polished, switching that to like, no, it's moving me through life. And it's this tool that I'm been blessed with to be able to, like, fully experience, the present moment. So mindfulness and meditation was huge for that.


Oh my gosh, it's so so healing, and I feel like a lot of where, you know, so many women go wrong in there and like start of their journey to heal their relationship with food. They're like, Okay, I'm gonna heal my relationship with food like, okay, let's focus on how much am I eating? When am I eating? It's all these physical eating behaviors and like, that's like, I feel like that's like the least for me and the process like I work with my clients. It's like that physical piece like comes like later and throughout the process and like, the first part is more of that like mental and spiritual like healing and it's like, I truly believe that like meditation is going to take you so much farther and healing your relationship with food than like, obsessing over honoring your hunger and fullness cues, which like is great. It's a great part of the process. You know what I mean? Like, it's good to tap into your body, it's good to tap into those physical cues. But it's like, if you don't even have that ability to tap into yourself at all. It's like, you're just gonna turn that honoring your hunger and fullness cues into another, like black and white mentality thing.


Yeah, and then it's like, Oh, I can't eat when I'm not hungry. It's like, yes. Okay. Like sometimes.


Oh my gosh, I know. Okay, so So then we're Did your journey take you? After like that kind of like phase?


Oh, that was like the fun part, I feel like because that's when you really start to like, get that space to be able to actually hear the part like that sort of higher self because the more that you are like, present in the moment and experiencing life, your body and externally around you, it's that talk track kind of fades away, or at least you're able to get into a state where it fades away. Because obviously you have thoughts throughout the day. I'm not saying that all of a sudden your mind goes silent, but you're able to sort of like tap into that silence. So that's when I got to sort of like, be aware of who I was beyond just my physical self and like, what do I actually like to do? What do I actually want to create? Like, how do I want my life to look like what is my What am I craving on like, a deep soul level? And I just sort of got to know like, why am I here? What do I want to do like What sort of effect do I want to have in the world? Like, I was able to get to know myself on a deeper level, because that came with like silence and stillness. And so that was like, a good


I was gonna say it sounds like it like opened up your ability to like, tap into your purpose and stepping


into your purpose and your power 100% because with all of those critical thoughts and obsessing over my body, like, I wasn't thinking like, what am I here to create? I was thinking, how am I going to lose weight? And it's like, they're two completely nuts like, Yeah, and I always think it's funny when people like I'm a good multitasker. I'm like, you're not though, like, one thing at a time. And like, if you're constantly thinking about your body, then you don't have time to explore like, your purpose and who you are and why you came here in the impact that you want to make and like, what kind of like mom you want to be your friend or partner. Or like all of the things that are actually important, like how do you want to make people feel and like, the juiciness beneath just the surface like, that gets so neglected and so being able to tap back into that was huge for me because that if you're not clear on that and you don't know that then you can't actually bring it to reality. And so being able to recognize that is like, obviously the first step or else you won't be able to actually bring it into fruition.


Yeah, for sure. Okay. And this is one of my last few questions, because I know we could talk forever and I love water, some of your other spiritual practices besides meditation.


journaling is like so


sacred for me. Like,


when I was when I've been like journaling since I was frickin 10 practically, and I used to hate it because it was like, mandated an eating disorder team and I was like, this doesn't do anything for me,


too. It's


so so good. journaling is huge. Walking is actually like a really powerful spiritual practice for me. I'll say little headphones and listen to music and walk and it is so so centering um yeah meditation, journaling, walking, reading when I'm in the mood some I'm not always wanting to read but if it's something that really feels connected to what I need to learn in that moment and it's like feeling really connected to where I am then reading can really put me in that space to honestly having conversation with like minded people. I feel like having conversations like these, it gets me back into like my alignment of like,


Oh yeah, this is what I am and what I'm here to do and like


that I feel like is the ultimate goal of a spiritual practice is to just like,


say for you feel your truth. Oh breathwork is wild. Also


I saw it is wild. Literally wild is like the perfect word for it. It is insane and so powerful. I like I've only done it a few times, but I'm gonna like continue to practice it more and more. It's unbelievable.


Do you do that in the valley in the chest out the mouth?


Yes. And I also did like just like very like fast like out like exhales I don't I don't even remember I had an I have an episode Actually, I don't know if it's already aired but with Denise. I think her name is Raul pacioli. She is a breathwork facilitator and we did like a mini breathwork session so you'll have to listen to that. And you guys listening will have to listen and try that out. Because Yeah, one


of my best friends who's also named Madison Funny enough, I guess I have a type and she


was sight. What's your sign? Like your zodiac sign? Okay, I'm a Scorpio Okay, I'm a Scorpio moon Aquarius son. I'm like reading a book about astrology and like learning all about it so now I want to know everyone's like sign.


Well, you know what's funny is Scorpios are supposed to be like so like, mysterious and like keep to themselves. I'm like, Oh my God. I anything but but I have Libra rising, which is


friendlier, like face to the world.




exactly. So interesting.


I know No, I love astrology. I don't know that much. Truth be told. I know like little bits and pieces like very much so one on one type of thing, but, ya know, it is it's fun to explore for sure. But yeah, she I feel like I'm lucky that one of my best friends is a breathwork facilitator because like,


cool, like, breath work


and like


oh my God, that's the best. Yeah. I need a friend that does breath work. Can I be her friend to do? Like one


another Madison. We got one.


Yeah, actually, that'll be great. We'll be just a trio of Madison's the spiritual, spiritual Madison's Yeah,


he's my spiritual sister. You need them. Oh my gosh,


I love it. Okay, so is there anything else that you want to share with us, we're going to give you a chance to send it to like Sure Reverend can find you and stuff but before then sir like anything else you feel like what's missing in our conversation, anything that's on your heart to share anything or herself is pulling in anything that you just want to share any final thoughts


just that your body does so much for you and she's so sweet and kind and just her main goal is to keep you alive and to be able to like help you live a healthy and fulfilled life and so there's so much power and like treating your body like your ally and like, like a part of you, she's your home, if you like that was one thing we didn't touch on very much was just that your body is your vessel and she does so so much for you and that we deserve to be kind to our bodies because is there to be kind to ourselves to.


Yes, and I love thinking of it like as your body is your home because it's like if you had if you lived in like your dream home, like how would you take care of it, you wouldn't nurture it, you would love it, you would keep it nourished, you would You would want to feel good in it, you would make it a safe space, you'd make it a comfortable space. So yeah, that's that's such a cool analogy. I love that. That was beautiful. I could I could just feel all the good vibes from you. I'm like, I'm like so calm right now just from like hearing your like gentle. Sweet boys. So anyways, this has been amazing. Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful story. Where can we find you and hang out with you and learn all the things about you?


Yes. So on Instagram, I'm just at Madison errs which is ma D is ln A y ers. And then my website is www dot Maddison dash airs calm and we'll have the links in the show notes too. But the website does have a dash on it. And then I actually have a body bus Starter Guide to you that you can get for free. And I gave you the link to that to deny I sent it to you.


Yeah, well, we can include that too.


Okay, cool. Perfect. Because I think That you're right. There are some people that are like, okay, I want to heal the relationship with my body, but like, where do I start? So it's a really good sort of starting point and being able to recognize your negative thoughts so that you know where to start to rewire.


I love it. Well, thank you for sharing that with my people and me and thank you for being here. Your story's amazing. Your work is amazing. You're amazing. And


we'll talk soon. Yay. Thank you for having me. Thanks. Bye.

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