Soul Chat with Kathleen
Welcome to 'Soul Chats', where we talk with positivity queens, inspiring goddesses, empowering wonder women, and awe-inspiring girl bosses.
Our vision is to uncover how these beautiful humans nurture their soul, feed their mind, and nourish their body, to share their tips and insight with Intrinsic's beautiful community.
Next up, we chat with Kathleen Donhardt from Light Elephant Coach, who has turned her own healing into her power and purpose, supporting women right across the globe to live empowered, through loving and accepting themselves and their body.
Kathleen lives all that she teaches, so grab a cuppa, get comfy, and read below to discover Kathleen’s tips and tricks for living an empowered life.
I practice mindfulness every day by…
Showing up for myself every day with a commitment to doing my best.
I schedule time in my gorgeous Intrinsic Diary for my daily practices of being mindful and present with myself. I delight in ticking off my daily habit tracker because it reinforces another day of showing up for myself.
The list of what to do is endless really.
I wrote a program that includes 100 ways to self love and embodiment and what that showed me along the way, more than anything, is the simple commitment of showing up consistently each and every day for a minimum of just 10 minutes, brought me so much self love and compassion.
The activities I did each day powered up the feelings of acceptance and empowerment, not only for myself as a woman, but also for my body.
My top 3 self-care activities are…
I change things up regularly to keep it interesting. If I become bored, then I’m less likely to want to do it, so my priority is to do something every day towards caring for myself.
With that said, my top tip for self-care is to do it first up in the day. Have a strong foundation to your day by filling your own cup first.
Journaling – because my pen and paper are my two nearest and dearest friends who never judge me, interrupt or even have an opinion. Instead they guide me with trust, love and compassion and allow me to express anything and everything. Oftentimes I gain a lot of healing, wisdom, ideas and guidance through writing.
Qigong – eyes, mind, body, breath, is the powerhouse of cultivating energy for today and having some in reserve to deal with the bigger life experiences that get thrown at us. There’s many benefits for health on all levels with this practice alone.
Meditation - which can vary from sitting quietly and breathing deeply to colouring a mandala and everything in between. Anything that is mindful is meditating, like eating at the table without screens, being fully present, breathing deeply and fully with the meal in front of us. Just this alone is how I overcame constant indigestion, reflux and overeating.
The irony of Self-Care is that it doesn’t have to cost a cent or be complicated, it’s just a small investment of consistent time and attention, with benefits that keep on giving way more than the effort required to do them. We simply have to decide to get out of our own way and show up to do the work, rather than making excuses. That can prevent a whole lot of down time, stress, anxiety and exhaustion that people curse and criticise their body for.
My go-to tools for expanding my mind…
More than anything, this is to learn something new, have a go at something I haven’t done before, but always wanted to learn.
I believe our willingness to keep learning in life, regardless of what that is specifically, helps to keep our brains alive and healthy and expands our life in limitless ways. We don’t have to age into a limiting, shrinking way of life until we’re waiting to die. Seeking out information and respectful conversations that challenge my beliefs keeps my mind and soul open and expanding all the time.
Aside from that my most useful ‘go-to tool’, is I do a Gong Practice, which is committing to specific daily practices for 100 days consecutively to change habits and achieve goals. If I miss a day, I start over at day 1 until the 100 day deal has been achieved. It’s a great way to learn about ourselves and our habits and what’s truly important with how we want to live.
I nourish my body with…
Kindness and gratitude for all that it’s taught me and teaches me about embodiment and self love. I express gratitude with letters to my body, for all that it enables me to do in life. I speak kindly when it’s tired, aching or hurting and gently ask what it most needs.
I moisturise my ‘entire body’ daily as part of my showering routine. I nourish my body with the best quality fresh food I can and eat without stressful dieting rules, measuring and numbers. I nourish my body with movement that brings enjoyment. I delight in doing my hair in different styles and will do even if I’m not going out anywhere.
I actively gave up being critical and judgey of my body and anyone else’s.
I trust my gut and what my body is communicating to me, even if my head doesn’t agree, my body always knows best and I respect it for that.
My fave quote…
“Fall seven times, rise eight, life begins now” Bodhidarma.
For me life is a practice not a perfect, and no matter what ups and downs life gifts us with, we choose how we respond, learn, grow and evolve to keep going forward.
There is always another way with the willingness to keep getting back up one more time than we fall. It’s amazing how often I have felt like I couldn’t possibly dig any deeper to keep moving forward, only to discover there was more in me after all to get back up once more.
My advice for maintaining a positive mindset through tough times…
First, develop and practice a positive mindset through every day and be sure to turn toward these practices even more to get through the tough times too.
Be kind with yourself through these tougher times especially, and resist the need to judge anything about it or yourself. It is as it is and allowing that to be without judgment is always less painful.
Whenever I’m confused, stuck or unsure of what to do in these tougher times, I turn inwards to myself and love on myself even more, with gentle kindness, compassion and patience until I know what to do next, however long that takes. I colour mandalas, I sit or walk in nature, I write or paint, I create and I breathe. I let the judgements go and can still be real with how I feel while nourishing myself with caring kindness.
We must acknowledge and express our feelings and emotions honestly. True health and wellness is more than just what we eat and how we move. How we feel and how we think plays a big role in our health, more than we give credit for. Our best health will always serve us well when dealing with life challenges outside of our control.
Through her personal experiences, healing childhood trauma and abuse, Kathleen has learned how to discover the gifts within her experiences, fulfilling her life purpose.
Hear more from this empowered goddess by popping over to her Light Elephant Coach website, liking Light Elephant Coach on Facebook or following @lightelephantcoach on Instagram to tap into her compassioniate and uplifting vibes.