I am totally fan girling right now because I had the absolute pleasure of interviewing someone who I closely follow (or stalk.. whatever you want to call it) on social media... Emma Ceolin. Check out the interview below and see why I find her extremely inspiring and constantly checking her socials for inspiration....
Q. Can you tell us a little about your experience with depression?
Emma: From a young teen I experienced low self-esteem, doubt and fear. This lead to an anxiety and panic disorder. What I didn’t understand at the time was that anxiety commonly led to depression, especially in those that try to live with it every day. When I turned 18 years old, I was diagnosed with depression and told no one about the demons I battled in my head.
Q. How long were you battling depression?
Emma: I experienced depression from the ages of 18-22 years. I was in and out of hospital, trialled many medications, phycologists, psychiatrists, kinesiologists and more.
Q. How did you seek out help?
Emma: Quite simply, I didn’t. I felt like I wasn’t able to share this with anyone so I suffered in silence and pretended for a really long time. In doing so, I wasn’t able to release what I was going through.
Q. How did you find the courage to initiate change?
Emma: I reached a point where I was living in so much burden and pain. I felt like my soul didn't fit in. Like there was no place in this world for me anymore. To the point that I didn't want to be here. I remember waking up in hospital after a suicide attempt only to realise just how loved I really was when my mum told me ‘you have no idea how precious you are’. That was rock bottom for me. And I realised the only thing worse than staying, was leaving. So I promised myself I would try again to find a path to happiness.
Q. How did you overcome your depression?
Emma: It wasn’t through doctors and medications, but through a holistic approach. I made changes to love, nourish and nurture myself from the inside out. My first step was to remove anything or anyone from my life that no longer served my greatest good and highest joy. So I ceased any toxic relationships, threw away the party heels, quit modelling, quit drugs, quit smoking, quit alcohol, quit caffeine, quit meat, quit dairy, quit my job. I read uplifting books, surrounded myself with inspiring people, made amends for my wrong doings, forgave others for theirs and said YES to anything that came my way. Anything that made feel alive again and brought me happiness, I kept close. Slowly but surely, the dark corners of my soul started to fill with light again. I found love I never knew existed with freediving, scuba diving, marine conservation, surfing and most of all yoga.
Q. Can you tell us a little more about how a holistic lifestyle and yoga has helped your anxiety and depression?
Emma: When I found yoga I had no idea how much my life would change. I started off with a simple beginner yoga class and I just found love. It taught me to make peace with who I really am and to fiercely love myself in all my forms. Yoga healed my mind, my body and my soul. It saved my life. I wouldn't be here with out it. That’s the driving force behind my mission to teach and share yoga as a path to health, healing and happiness.
Q. Do you have any inspiring advice you could give someone who is moving through depression?
Learn to be vulnerable. Even if it it’s uncomfortable and even if it hurts. Because sharing your story is letting it go, talking about your pain is reliving it and being vulnerable is how you heal. When I chose to struggle alone it not only prevented me from sharing my pain, but also prevented others from seeing the truth. If we’re all pretending then everyone struggles alone. One of the most beautiful things we can do is vulnerably open our heart as it is broken.
Q. What have you found to be the best way to lift yourself up when life knocks you down?
Emma: One of the greatest lessons I have learned this year is to truly accept and find beauty in all life’s tides. Because these ebbs and flows are a part of the duality of life. We are all human and we all go through heartache, fears and times of anxiety. Sometimes things go very wrong. This is a part of the human experience. We have this tendency to avoid, push away and run from this negativity, which can delay the healing process and make things worse. Learn to be okay with not being okay. This is the secret to overcoming some really shitty days. Sometimes the best way to lift yourself up is as simple as relinquishing control and relaxing into this heartache or pain. Because you absolutely have to burn through emotions in order to transform them.
Q. Who inspires you?
Emma: Those who fall down, pick themselves up and try again, grazed knees and all. They are my absolute heroes!
Emma’s Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/emmaceolin/
Emma’s Blog: https://emmaceolin.com/blogs/finding-happy
Emma’s Website: https://emmaceolin.com