Life is For Living bySusanaTuyaSarmiento
What I learned while I was bedridden with an autoimmune disease that everyone women should have been told!
Who am I? My background how I thought I was superwoman!
I’m originally from Lima, Peru.I’ve been living in New Zealand since1989,recently moved to Australia and travel quite a bit.My life calling fromavery young ageis to lead and inspire women to look and feel and thrive to their greatness.
I was born intothe fashion industry in Peru, so from a very tender age,I was submerged into color and styles. Looking back, I wasstudying women since back then.I got to see why they love themselves, what they dislike, and how they criticize themselves, how they view their bodies, etc.That wasjust an incredible education.I got to see really what made a woman look and feel beautiful.
I saw a common thread though.I saw that it wasn’t really about the latest style or fashion, but it was something that you ooze from the inside.Beauty and confidence is something that completely comes from the inside out.Youcan have the most beautiful women in the worldinterviewed,amazing top models, and they look at themselves in the mirror and they don’t consider themselves beautiful.
My journey started from a very young age. Always curious and eagerto discover what makes a woman confidentwhat makes a woman really own and rock her world?What makes a woman like or dislike who they are?When I came to New Zealand, I was in the corporate world.I was what you would call succeeding and thriving, but the more I climbed up the corporate ladder, the more I was leaving my true self behind.
In 2005, I took a leap of faith.It was actually one of those ‘serendipity’ moments.I was in San Francisco, and they say "when the student is ready, the teacher appears".I wasreading books that said, “Youdo what you love, and you never have to work another day again.”
I was sitting at a restaurant, and Ihappened to hear this woman talking to some clients about styling and imageand I tapped her on the shoulder.I said, “Excuse me.I know you’re busy, but when you finish, I would love to talk to you.”She did.I introduced her to someamazing New Zealand wine. We sat down there and then and drank two bottles.
She happened to be one of San Francisco’s top image consultants and stylists.I decided atthat moment thatwas exactly what I wanted to do.I went back and told my partner my new found idea. He laughed and thought I have had too much wine!I had learned from Tony Robbins that if you want to make a change, you call two people so they can hold you accountable.I called them from the hotel room, and I said, “This is what I want to do.I want to go home, quit my job, and start a self-image styling business.”
People thought I was crazy.Back then there were no makeover shows, so we didn’t have that in the market already, but it was just something so driven within me.People said, “How can you do that?People pay you to do shopping?Women will feel intimated by you.How can you teach body confidence when you’re slim?”All those excuses.We know all those things that we hear from other people when we have a great idea.
I thought it might have been a bit insane, but later realized nothing was going to change my mind.I had a purpose, and it was actually my life calling.I remember making that decision, and for some strange reason, I quit my job. My relationship at the time finishedthe very same week.I was left with no job, moving houses,anda business idea. Istarted to move into my new phase of life.I was feeling a little bit uncomfortable, but really trusting in myself, the universe
The moment that I knew I was in my moment and in my own essence is when; “I happened to be in the right place at the right time,” at a charity auction.I was talking to the general manager of a very good company.They just happened to be accepting submissions for a Mother’s Day event, and they were looking for differentpeople.I pitched my winning proposal, and it was my first client.It was Louis Vuitton.I knew that I was on the right path.
It was fantastic.I got to know women even deeper. I got to reallyhelp them with their confidence andteach themhow to love themselves. Atthe time,I started to understand that something was in me, what might be my passion, my soul, my life calling; which was helping me to understand women even further.I got to study women for over 15 years and really got to see a common thread.Whatit was is that women willabandon themselves, which is a characteristic that I didn’t think I was guilty of, but later I would find outdifferently.
My passion to women empowerment and my painful lesson.
As a woman, I am passionate about creating a culture where women are guilt-free to nurture themselves, to thrive with vitality, to love their precious bodies and celebrate their uniqueness. But most importantly to valuethemselves.We have this deservability global problem where women are not calling or commanding their trueself-worth.We get involved in toxic relationships or situations that are not honoring.One of my bestgifts that I can give isreally valuing who you are.Self-honor,Self-love and Self-value.Make yourself number one.When you do that, your entire world transforms.
How I got to learn that was a very painful lesson.My entire life, I was about promoting and speaking about self-love and body image, but I didn’t realize a common thread that I saw in women about abandoning themselves, I was personally guilty of.
In 2013, my entire life came to a total complete halt.I got really sick.I acquired an autoimmune disease, which now I’ve obviously made it my passion to communicate this to women.It’sone of the top leading causes of death in women worldwide.One out of 12 womenaresuffering from autoimmune dysfunction or disease.There’sabout 50 million Americans, and the majority are women of working age and childbearing agewhohave it.
This is just shocking when you start looking at statistics. Autoimmune diseases and disorders are ranked number one in the top tenlistsof the most popular health topics for women.Last year it was $100 billion in healthcare costs, in comparison to $53 billion of cancer.It’s a real growing epidemic that is getting more serious.My intention is to get this powerful message to all the women in the world to not only transform them, but also to save their lives.I’m happy to share how that journey was for me.
An autoimmune disease is where your body starts attacking its own organs, tissues, and cells. There are more than 80 types. For example, inflammatory bowel disease, multiple sclerosis, psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, scleroderma and systemic lupus even Type 1 diabetes is classified as an autoimmune dysfunction.
What happened with me is I started getting really sick.It first started with migraines.I remember counting the days when I would NOT have a migraine.I was very tired.I’m a very high energy, passionate person, so this was not like me.Like anything, when you get sick, you first think it’sgoing to be maybe a couple of days ormaybe a weekend.Then it started extending to a week, a month, three months,and thensix months.I started to think, “There’s something really really wrong with me.”
After the first month I started going to every single specialist, every single doctor you could imagine.I remember the first three months spending easily $15,000 to $20,000, because when you’re not feeling well, and you feel there’s something wrong and nobody is giving you an answer, you still keep moving forward.What is it that’s happening to me?
I went to top specialists and they said, “Look, you’ve got migraines. You’re just a migraine sufferer.Herearethe pills.”
I said, “No, I need to find what is creating the migraine.What is actually happening to me?”
My body started deteriorating to the point where I started losing my hair, my eyesight, my hearing, and I could no longer move.It was the most excruciating, most frightening time of my life.I remember just lyingthere in bed with every nerve ending on fire and paralysed by the pain.I remember saying, “Why is this happening?Universe, have you left me, abandoned me?Is this karma?Why me?”
No matter how much I tried to process and use my mind, I got no answers and the pain was unbearable as my brain was actually swollen when they took the scans.It got to the point where I had no choice, just to lie there on my bed for months staring atwhat I could stare at looking up, what was called my (A2L6), which was the name and the number of my sprinkler.I just wentinwards and this is when I started listening to my body.
My body upgrade. The body’s own language
It was one of the most life-changing experiences, because your body has a language.Your body is constantly giving you messages of what is of value or not valuing you.Are you on the right or the wrong path?What is toxic or not?Ihadnever had this conversation before.I had a conversation from the outside, but never from the inside.
The message was, “Susana, you gave your power away here.Look what you’ve been doing here. You weren’t listening. Your body is a total mirror of what is going inside.”
One great analogy is like when you’re watching a TVprogram and you push mute – when you push mute, you haven’t turned the program off; you just turned the volume down, but the program is still running. It’s exactly the same when our body issaying,“Slow down” and you don’t listen.All you’ve done is press mute.
Your body will not let you lie and it won’tbe lied to.Autoimmune disease is when our body has had enough. There is a disorder, a dysfunction, a chemical imbalance,making the cells and the tissuesand the organs to start self-destructing.There are a lot of women suffering.
What I actually got diagnosed with was ME eight months later. I remember I was in one way relieved, because I knew what it was.I said to the doctor, “How can I have ME (which stands for myalgic encephalomyelitis) if I can't even say it? “Another one is chronic fatigue, which is CFS syndrome from myalgia, etc.
I was puzzled, because I was somebody who was so healthy.I was very healthy – I did yoga, ate amazing food, meditated.How canthishappen tosomeone like me? It completely blew away all my friends and family that I got something like this.
I realized that it was my thoughts, my toxic environment, the relationships I was having, and not honoringmyselfthat created this slowness.If you look at the word “stillness” as your body, it’s an illness looking to be silent, to be still, stop and to listen.
What I learned while I had a body lockdown that everyone women should know:
At the moment,I’m putting together this amazing book. In it are the lessons and learnings I discovered when I was not able to move that everyone should know to live a more peaceful, juicy and vibrant life. I share the innate language of the body that is speaking to each one of us every day and how to translate this to empower us and help us thrive in this miraculous fabulous life.
I realized the importance of this tip:Be supported by your sisterhood.I called in the peoplewhoI trusted the most.I remember lying in bed, unable to move.I had a pity party, and that’s okay.Sometimes you just need to go, “Why is this happening?” and get it all out of your system.
I’m a true believer ofnot holdingany emotion.Any disease and illness is trapped emotion in your body.Cry.Let it out.Twenty percent of “What’s this about? “and eighty percent of, “What’s next? “Someone said to me, “Susana, you need to document this.What you’re telling me is going to change the world.This is your TED talk.”
So I wrote … Not only would I write when I didn’t have the energy, I recorded my entire journey.If I could put it into a very simple format for women, it’s all aboutlisteningto your body.It is the speaker of your inner emotions.Like I mentioned before with the TV analogy– just because you mute it doesn’t mean the program has stopped.
Eventually your body will have its say, and it will create a crisis. It’s always best to avoid a crisis.However, the gift that I learned is that in moments of crisis, you can truly learn what is acceptable and what is not.My tips that I learned from my journey within me were:
1.Never, ever compromise who you are.Your body won't let you lie or be lied to.
2.Always make YOUR happiness number 1.
Putting yourself second or third or even below the last scale, will only end up making you resentful, tired, and for any of those vain people, it will age you as well.
This is something that we need to completely remove from our DNA.Women are nurturers.We don’t put ourselves first, because we don’t want to feel guilty, etc.There is actually a syndrome called the Martyr’s Syndrome where we’re putting so much of ourselves into others, and we complain to everybody else.Just stop.
There’s an analogy that you can use.It’s as crazy as a mother with a family minivan running around, saying,and “I’m too busy to stop for petrol.I’m too busy to stop for petrol. “Eventuallythat family van– you – runs out of petrol and cannot take your family to the next destination. Put yourself first.
3.True love is never meant to hurt.Truly it shouldn’t.
4. Receiving is MORE important than giving
Learn to receive and ask for help.As women, we’re such givers, and we’re not receivers.When we look at the energy that is spent, it’s so important to be able to receive love before we can give love; otherwise, we’re giving conditional love.
We need to begin to command that we deserve to receive, and not to be afraid to ask for help. That was huge for me.I was always the personwhowas helping others, the personwhohad everything in control, and to ask for help was something, that was one of the most life-changing experiences.
I was not able to move.You can imagine, when you have a business, I had to have someone to help me to call all my creditors, someone to help my staff and my clients.I literally had to call on my support chain and say, “Who can help?” and really just trust that the Universe and my friends really had my back.It was amazing.I got to find out who my true friends were, who went, who was of true value, and who wasn’t, whichcomes to point number five.
5. Build a strong on-call network
We say in business that your network is your net worth. For me,your network is your life worth.You gatheryour strong sisterhood.Stay away from toxic people.Be around the people that truly support you.Your sisterhood or your brotherhood is one of the most healing gifts and environments you can create.
6. Become a master of loving yourself FIRST.
Love yourself.Watch your language.We wouldn’t talk to our best friend like we talk to ourselves.When I coach clients in body image, when you look at yourself in the mirror, when you’re taking your clothes off, when you’re having a shower, what messages are you giving yourself? You tend to replay it every single day, and that self-language is going into your cells.It’s going into your body. It’s going into your central nervous system.It’s going into your hormones. You start to see what begins to happen after years of doing this.Lovewhoyou are.Look at yourself in the mirror and appreciate this version of yourself today.Fire your inner critic and hire your own love guru.
7.Practice daily mindfulness.
Mindfulness has become such a buzzword, which I love.We’re not speaking a different language here.A good analogy with this is it doesn’t matter how amazing of a piano or cello player, whatever you may be, the musician never plays the symphony before tuning their instrument first.We’re going out there, going out to our day, starting our morning, getting into our technology, going to meetings, interacting with people without first tuning ourselves.Stop playing gibberish notes.
Take time.Make time for you, whether itisa couple of minutes in the morning, or at lunchtime.Stop eating your lunch at your computer.Go outside.Take in fresh air.Tune into your senses.Listen to yourself.Be still.Stop and listen. One of the most amazing things you can do is to give yourself five minutes of total peace.
Tune into the most precious instrument in your life, which is YOU.
Those would be my top seven tips that you can embody.Be kind to yourself, and love who you are.Nature has invested so much in your uniqueness to not celebrate it.
Ilook back now at my life and see how the Universe continues to give you scenarios so you can acquire the skills and the faculties (facilities) to get you where you need to be.For every challenge that you have, it’s just the fine tuning.
Looking back, I was born dyslexic.Upside down, back to front.I was told I would never go to a normal school.I had to train myself. I ended up going to one of the best schools in Peru.I’ve had so many challenges and when I look back, however they were all defining and redefining moments for my legacy.
My intention, my life calling, is to inspire women to look and feel and thrive in their greatness.How I do this is through my passion forcommunication andpresenting.I love communicating this message visually, vocally,andin writing, not bad for a dyslexic who was told she would not be able to achieve that much.
One of my life missions and one of my goals is to create a transformational woman’s lifestyle show: a programthat is going to be full of tips.We’re busy people.We can grasp, we can take, we can collaborate, we can share, and we can begin to break away from all the illusions and all the fantasies we’ve created that we need to be perfect.“Our bodies need to look like this or that.”Did you know that only 3% of women in the world consider themselves to be beautiful?That is shocking.
A lot of what’s been going on with women is not our fault.We’ve just been incorrectly conditioned.I want us to break away from the veil and really celebrate ourselves.
My legacy is to transform women to see who they truly are.
When you look at yourself in the mirror, therearetwo reflections. There’s the reflection that you see in the mirror, which is a direct projection of your subconscious mind.It’s like a projector of your mind and what you think you are.Then there’s the mirror reflection that sees you and what is your true version of yourself.
A little tip here – when you look at yourself in the mirror, a women’sself-imageof how you look and feel about yourself is formed from the ages of 7 to 13 for the rest of your life.Whatever you’ve picked up, it’s just an older version of you.
Again, my mission is collaborating with a whole range of other women who’ve got similar messages and delivering it so we can live our life the way we’re meant to, which is full of love, increased deservability,loveand self-value.
A lot of people ask, “Why women, Susana?”Because when you give women financial assistance, when you give them empowerment, they change this world.They build communities.They build schools. That’s in our DNA.The Dalai Lama said it so beautifully, that the world would be changed by the Western woman.Ibelieve the world is going to be changed by women in this world.That is my legacy.
We only get this life.We might as well live it with fullness.
Susana Tuya Sarmiento xo