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I particularly love what he says: “As you sit here is it possible for you to simply watch what’s happening around you without adding any intrepretion to it… to just be present with what is?”

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At one point or another many of us come to a crossroads in our professional and personal lives. We sit back, sigh deeply and ask ourselves “is this all there is?” For Renee Trudeau, the deep inner calling of her life became louder and louder until one day she decided to leave a successful corporate career and change the direction of her life forever. What happened next not only took her own family in an entirely new direction, but her powerful message of motherhood and self-care has changed the lives of thousands of women worldwide. Now, Renee is exploring the world of everyday spirituality. And somewhere in the process of being a student, she has become the teacher.

 

CL: You left behind a lucrative and very stable career in order to pursue your passions. Can you tell me about that decision, what you decided to do and how leaving the corporate environment changed your life?

RT: Gregg Levoy, author of Callings: Finding and Following An Authentic Life says “Generally people won’t pursue their calling until the fear of doing so is finally exceeded by the pain of not doing so. But, it’s amazing how high our threshold is for this type of pain.” I knew after a stable, 14-year career in the marketing communications field that there was another way I was meant to use my gifts and talents.

I had coached professionals (for free) for years on how to develop and leverage their personal brand and I had a strong desire to help others express their potential. So, after much soul searching—more on this journey in my book– I launched Career Strategists in 2000, based on my strong belief that we are truly meant to integrate “who we are” with “what we do” in the world. Yes, like all that make the leap to self-employment, I had a lot of fear come up. But I knew that the life I desired (one where I was the master of, not the slave to my life) was more important than the fear. Ultimately, I had no choice but to take this leap.

I believe we all receive these taps on the shoulder throughout our life. The question is, next time you receive a tap, will you shrug the feeling off, or say yes (to your life)?

CL: How did the concept of personal renewal groups and your book, The Mother’s Guide to Self-Renewal, initially come about and what has been the response?

themothersguide_cover_000RT: After having my son at age 37, I was shocked to realize how profound the transition to parenthood is. I believe having a child, literally changes you on a cellular level. Who you are will never be the same. And, at the same time, it really rocks you to your core and challenges you to get clear on why you’re here, what is your path and what does the life you truly desire—look like? (My video talks more about this.)

After searching for resources and books that support mothers in nurturing their essence while taking care of their kids, I found nothing and was ultimately guided to start a Personal Renewal Group (self renewal circle for women) in 2003. Five years and countless groups later, after repeated requests from my Personal Renewal Group members, The Mother’s Guide to Self-Renewal was born. Now thousands of women around the US/Canada and beyond are leading these groups, which are based on the Guide, and supporting women in nurturing their emotional well-being. The response has been phenomenal (many therapists, coaches, doulas and women’s empowerment advocates are being called to lead groups.) Everyone seems to immediately get how important and needed a life coaching program like this, is. The book will be published in Korea later this year. It seems that the messages that came through me are resonating on a universal level.

CL: When people come to a crossroads in life, they are often told to pursue their passions and the money will follow. Do you believe that’s true?

RT: Yes! After working now for more than 20 years in this arena (I started helping family/friends with career strategy when I was eighteen) and having supported thousands in both big and small career and life transitions, I absolutely believe it is our job, our responsibility, to give birth to the best that is within us. And when we do this from a place of truth and authenticity, we will prosper.

I also work with clients a lot on marrying their passion with their brilliance (what you innately “do best”). This is where the magic happens! When we leverage our innate God-given talents, we’re in flow. We’re doing what we were put on the earth to do. And, when this happens, we can’t help but prosper financially. Interestingly, for most of my clients, the hard work isn’t around manifesting, it’s around “receiving” (believing that you’re worthy to be paid for these gifts).

CL: We all know how important it is to take good physical care of oneself in order to be effective in life. What else do you advise people to do to take care of themselves? What is your definition of self-care?

RT: Self-care is the practice of self-nourishment and self-nurturing. It’s essential to feeling whole and to being human. Cancer survivor/activist Audrey Lorde says “Self care is not about self-indulgence, it’s about self-preservation.” Taking time to fill our cups first before helping others is essential to our well-being and to optimal living.

Start by cultivating an awareness of how you talk to, treat, think about and care for yourself—physically, emotionally and spiritually. I have found the practice of self-care is a portal for many of us to our deeper selves. Loving ourselves and treating ourselves as if you would treat a small child, requires a deep honoring of spirit, of our essence (you can learn more about the transformative power of self-care in The Mother’s Guide to Self-Renewal). Begin with baby steps, be gentle with yourself and know that developing a self-care practice takes time and being around others who believe this is essential, too.

CL: What are you reading right now? What are some books that you can recommend for people interested in personal/spiritual growth?

RT: Life coaches Jennifer Louden and Cheryl Richardson are two of the original self-care advocates/pioneers and all of their books are wonderful and highly recommended, particularly if you’re just getting started on your self-care journey. In terms of physical self-care, I am reading Quantum Wellness by Kathy Freston and The Wisdom of Menopause by Dr. Christiane Northrup—both are very holistic and integrative in their approach to physical/emotional/spiritual well-being. I am also reading (I’m a multiple books at one time reader) Practicing The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle, Soul Signs by Diane Eichenbaum, Conversations with God (again) by Neal Donald Walsch, This I Believe: The Personal Philosophies of Remarkable Men and Women and Open Heart, Open Mind by Father Thomas Keating (who will be in Austin Feb. 21-22).

CL: I understand you are working on a new project. Can you tell us about that?

RT: Since last summer, I have been researching and exploring the theme of “everyday spirituality”—the idea that the sacred is present and accessible everyday, through simple daily rituals and activities like walking in nature, playing with our kids and artistic expression, etc.

I think most Americans are overwhelmed, overworked and overscheduled. They are craving meaning in their lives, but when they hear the term “spiritual practice,” they think forget it, who has time to go on a ten day silent retreat or go sit on a mountaintop! I’ve got kids to get to soccer and bosses to appease! I believe strongly that there are many avenues for nourishment on the“spiritual practice” continuum and that each of us just needs to get quiet and hear what spiritual renewal looks like to us.

I was raised in a very interesting family (my latest blog posting on Spirituality talks about this)—I have a brother named Shiva and a sister named after St. Theresa. Questions around spiritual renewal and fulfillment have been sitting with me for a long, long time. I believe this is the direction my work will be taking me over the next 5-7 years.

Upcoming Events:

Renee Trudeau is holding a Career Mojo workshop on 2/26/09 as well as a women’s self renewal retreat on 3/24/09. Current Living readers can enjoy a special early bird rate for the women’s retreat through April 10th!! But register early because these workshops fill up fast. Please go to www.reneetrudeau.com for more info.

ww.russellforsyth.com

ww.russellforsyth.com

Russell Forsyth is a healer, medium and Angel Therapy Practitioner. I recently spoke to Russell about his path, his work and the possibilities of listening to your personal guidance system.

CL: What is the primary focus of your practice, and how did you choose this line of work?

RF: I consider myself a healer-helper. Everyone has the natural ability to heal themselves. I try to empower them with that energy to release old patterns, blocks and anything that is not in alignment with their current beliefs, goals and health practices. My primary focus is on the chakra or ‘energy centers’ of the human body. Most emotional, physical and spiritual conditions that are considered unhealthy can be traced from these centers. I was a carpenter/contractor for thirty years, until I asked Spirit and the Universe to guide me into my encore career in service to others. My construction work started to phase out, while my readings increased. I feel like the work chose me.

CL: What happens in a typical Angel Therapy session?

RF: I am usually guided to ask a series of questions designed to allow the client to openly express themselves in a safe environment. These expressions usually unveil the feelings of the heart and uncover basic needs of the individual. From that information, I am usually guided to do energy work and/or deliver messages from the angels that are directed toward a spiritual overview. Some sessions are without the message aspect and geared toward energy movement with a heavy focus on the chakra system.

CL: Are you seeing an increase or a decrease in interest surrounding connecting with angels and guides? Who is your typical client?

RF: The latest events in the world have more people seeking answers from a spiritual source. My business increases with fears and worries about the economy and the global environment. People are going back to some basics of life with more focus on health, career and finances with interest in the future. My typical client is a professional and I see doctors, lawyers, politicians, musicians, engineers and your typical Austinite. I also have people that travel some distance to see me. So in a typical day I might see people from Dallas, San Antonio and Houston. But sometimes I might see someone from Germany or South Africa as well.

CL: You have created a unique healing modality called the Harmonic Crystal Healing Bed. How did that come about and what benefits does it offer?

RF: It is a long story, but basically I started receiving guidance from the angels and ended up with a 10K word document journal with a complete description of the construction of the bed. After months of asembly, I studied the components and discovered the science behind the crystal bed. I was never into crystals before, but have since gained quite a appreciation for their healing benefits. The crystal bed used sound, light, color, magnets, crystals and an angelic gateway to do everything from releasing an emotion to working with the worst physical ailments such as cancer or heart disease. The number one response from a session on the Harmonic Crystal Healing Bed® is an overwhelming feeling of peace.

CL: Can anyone hear guidance from angels or guides? How do they communicate?

RF: Yes, they communicate through the “claire” senses which everybody has. Clairvoyance is one that most people have heard about and this is the sense of vision. You can receive a message from the angels in the form of a vision in the mind’s eye, such as a dream or a waking vision.This is one of several ways to connect. Angels and guides use signs such as feathers, coins, jewelry, and electrical devices to get our attention. They often use repetitive symbols and metaphors as a way to message a feeling or illicit a response. Our guides will not meddle in our affairs under normal circumstances, so we need to engage in asking for their help as a way to start the connection process.

CL: What are the differences between angels and guides?

RF: Some people make no distinction, but to me a guide is usually someone that has walked the earth plane in some form, while the angels generally have never had that experience. An Ascended Master such as Quan Yin would be a good example of a guide while Archangel Michael is one angel that many have heard of. My clients connect with guides such as deceased loved ones, ascended masters, shamans, fairies, elementals and even star beings, so there are a lot of choices when choosing to connect with a alternate source. The other side of the veil has many options for those seeking an unearthly form of support. Others believe the guides are all one flow in the same energy, and it is mankind that chooses to separate and name these sources. I try to align myself with an individual’s belief in order to do energy work without imprinting my own beleifs.

CL: There is certainly a psychic element to this work. Are you psychic, and what does that term mean to you?

RF: Everyone is psychic! I have exercised and developed my senses in order to do this work, but everyone has gifts and it is up to each of us to decide how far we want to develop these gifts. There are many who have experienced past lives and witnessed the evolution of mankind. This past is filled with many harsh events that can have a lasting effect on people even in today’s world and spell danger for some. This can be a block and prevent people from opening to these gifts. Others feel that using psychic gifts goes against their belief systems. I feel like there is no elitism in this area and we are all equal. Some have not discovered this about themselves. Psychic awareness is on the increase in today’s world and to witness this is relatively easy, especially in the technological arena of the modern society.

CL: You’ve also entered the world of mediumship. There are a lot of misconceptions about mediums and what they do. Can you clear up a few of the more common misconceptions?

RF: When I started doing angel readings, deceased loved ones started coming forward in my sessions. I went for additional training in this area and now teach mediumship in workshops. If someone you knew walked into your room and your eyes were closed, you would then be left to feel the energy of that person in order to identify them. Connecting with the deceased is not much different. A medium has learned to take that ability to the next level. Using the “claire” senses and trusting yourself is the key, but you are simply connecting with someone that is not in the physical body. In all the work that I do, I have witnessed the most dramatic changes and healing through a medium session. Wrinkles disappear, the eyes get brighter, the face shines with a glow and the energy around that person gets lighter. The sessions are quite different from others, in that the deceased loved one is a person with free will and therefore dictates the session. You never know what will happen and that makes it interesting and exciting! Some religions have demonized this type of work and Hollywood has done their share to raise fears in this area. My experiences have been filled with love and compassion without the energy of fear and evil like some would have you think. Unfortunately our history is filled with abuse within the family structure and one opportunity to deliver a message of forgiveness makes the life of a medium very fullfilling. There are some who have given the work a bad name, while some people have had negative experiences engaging in the activity, so there are many misconceptions. My suggestion for those considering using a medium for the first time would be to talk with friends to find a referral to someone that has had success in the past. If you go to a medium, limit your expectations and open to the experience for the best results with the idea that people are people…….in the body or not(lol).

CL: Who has inspired you the most in your work?

RF: Dr. Doreen Virtue, John Edward and Dr. Marcel Vogel.

CL: Could you recommend three books for someone just beginning to learn about receiving guidance to help with life purpose, relationships, spiritual development, prosperity, etc.?

RF: I recommend books that I find resonantion with the majority of the writing. I rarely find one that I agree 100%. I would recommend Doreen Virtue’s Angels 101 or The Lighworkers Way, The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren and Eckhart Tolle’s A New Earth and anything from the Abraham-Hicks collection .

CL: In addition to your healing practice, you are a musician and author. How have these three passions intersected and what are your future plans for writing and producing music?

RF: Since changing careers and life paths which occurred in April ’06, I have written 4 books and am 75% complete with two more (I never considerd myself a writer). I have completed a 16 song CD project and am getting ready to record another CD in January. I write a weekly colum called ‘Angel Whipsers’ and have been filmed for a pilot show on the work that I do that is currently being presented to TV networks. I often integrate the use of my books and music for teaching workshops as channeled writing and music is a connnection to Spirit. I was passionate before my shift occurred, but the creative energy exploded when I dropped all my past hurts, forgave myself and those around me and openeed to what the Universe had to offer. I simply made the choice to create beauty, ease suffering and bring joy into the world around me. My future plans are all-inclusive of these passions, for together they bring balance, grounding and harmony to my own peacful existence. The positive experiences of others when exposed to these artistc mediums is icing on the cake!

For more information about Russell Forsyth, please visit http://www.russellforsyth.com. His latest novel is Mariposa and his most recent CD is titled One Thing.

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