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How to Serve from Authentic Love vs. Lack – The Shadow Behavior of the Rescuer

Mamas do you ever feel a bit overwhelmed, overextended, or frankly just burnt out? Like, OMG, there are so many moving parts and balls in the air with family, kids, and career?😫

I really resonate with that as a mom and entrepreneur. 😉

For a while I was really struggling juggling both.

When I started a new level of deep shadow work something shifted for me.

I learned that I was a classic Rescuer, also known as the people-pleaser, sometimes called the over-achiever.

I didn’t see this shadow aspect in myself back then, but when it was pointed out by a mentor, I saw how it was playing out in my life as a mother and co-parent.

I would give to the detriment of my own health and well-being. I would bend over backwards for other needs instead of my own. I would please others because I didn’t fully value myself and I didn’t want to disappoint by saying no.

There was a real cost in these unconscious behaviors like exhaustion, enabling others to not show up for me, and sickness.

I was so used to saying yes to everything and doing all of it, so I didn’t often ask for support and if someone did it felt burdensome so I would deny it anyway.

Thank God I learned about this ego behavior and how to transform it to create healthy boundaries and to love myself more.

The last few years I dove really deep so I could teach this to the women in my Unleash the Priestess programs because I see how prevalent this way of being is in our society. Women typically place themselves last.

In working with the Rescuer role, I teach women how to get really good at catching their subconscious habits and watching themselves with objective awareness.

When they practice this with compassion, they experience real changes that benefit themselves and their families.

I teach women how to create a daily sadhana that’s non-negotiable so they can receive the love that is their birthright.

I teach women how to create structure, discipline, accountability, self-responsibility and time management so they can create efficiencies and stretch time.

I teach women how to live a full life that’s more balanced and centered in self-love.

If you would like to learn more about this shadow work, join the conversation with other women doing this deep shadow work to illuminate it and reclaim your feminine power.❤️

Join our Facebook Community, The Priestess Within Sisterhood #unleashthepriestess and check out the 4-part series we just completed on Shadow work with my mentor of these teachings, Deanna Larkins.  She’s the owner of Emerge Hot Yoga Studio in Ashland and of Emerge Spiritual Studies.


A Workaholic’s 7 Steps To Recovery

I am a recovered workaholic.

I used to go-go-go.  It would take a lot for me each day to not work all morning, day and night.

I would stack appointments with no breaks, not eat, barely drink water and end my day depleted and unable to sleep. Making time for myself was unheard of.

I did everything in my power to serve and please those around me and then I’d get caught up resenting all the things I was doing. I couldn’t get out of this loop.

As a coach, I have so many women clients that fall into this category.  I hear it every day. 

One of the gifts of my program, Unleash the Priestess Within + Thrive, is to turn an eye toward what is keeping you from self-care and love.

Most of what you do is unconscious.

You are programmed as a child from your parents, teachers and society. You were taught to compete, climb ladders, and please others in efforts to get more of what you wanted.

Most women like you, have a wish to provide because you grew up in the era of women moving into the workforce and being able to have more rights and opportunitiesThis is wonderful, yet, what you learned was that you had to do everything you were told to “make it” and often that was at the expense of your own well being.

On top of being a career women, you may also still hold the role of the head of family household, kids, etc. So you have two jobs!

Where is your “YOU” time?

It’s time to question your motivation as a workaholic.

You probably have another unhealthy addiction called the “Rescuer” syndrome.

This is the part of you that needs to fix, save or overstep your responsibility because you can do it best. It keeps you in control of managing expectations. It feels safe.

Yet, in most cases, this is based on your childhood wounding story that says you are not good enough, worthy or important (or any other variation of not feeling heard, needed or loved.)

This is what is the motivating force behind your workaholic behavior.

Like any addiction its a habit that keeps you blind to your pain.

Unfortunately, you can no longer hide.  The gig is up!

One of my core wounds from childhood was feeling unheard, unseen and disregarded.  My parents were classic workaholics filled with pain.  In fact, most of my memories of them they were talking about work, constantly fighting and I didn’t feel seen at all. I was forced to study things I wasn’t interested in. I was living the life they wanted because it suited them. I felt like I wasn’t taken seriously.

As I got older, I fell into the same coping strategies that my parents did. I was so unhappy, depleted and unsure of what I was doing in Corporate America.

It was not at all aligned with my passions or purpose.

Then, my dad died. It took this huge weight off my shoulders to be honest. Although I love him and miss him every day, I finally was able to give myself permission to do what I wanted to do!

I went on my journey of self-realization. 😉

When my son was born, even though I’m a single mom, I was determined to find a way to be able to be present for Yeshua.

I created a salary for myself that supports my son, my lifestyle and leaves me afternoons to play with him daily – all available to me because I MADE MYSELF FIRST PRIORITY.

As a Yogi, Healer, Coach and Recovered Workaholic I know that when I am happy, everyone around me benefits.

I know that as I heal and do the inner work to love myself, I create healthier discipline, self-care and boundaries.

Here are my 5 Steps to Recovery:

1 – Stay true to a spiritual practice. My practice keeps me present, grounded and calm.  I meditate and do yoga every day.

As a single mom this means getting up at 5:30am in the morning and just doing it. No excuses.  It’s my connection to Source that keeps me sane, on my path, receiving downloads, channeling new ideas, giving gratitude and practicing my inner healing work.

2 – Move your Energy + Eat Well.  Every day do something to move your body and your energy and feed it with good life force energy (living foods). We get very stuck in our energy bodies.  This type of congestion lowers your vibration and keeps feeling stuck, undernourished and dead on the inside. Move your energy and feed it good fuel to heal, feel more relaxed and get back into balance.

3 – Get Outside. Be in Nature.  When you are in Nature you are reminded that life is bigger than you and your problems. You start to realize that there is more to life. There is a grander Divine plan.  I get outside every day at least once to take in fresh air and reset my nervous system.

4 – Time management.  I’m really disciplined with my time. I schedule everything and I give leeway to let things move around as Source is co-creating with me!  I know where my day is going with intention and I take major actions every day.  During Yeshua’s time I plan nothing all afternoon so I can in play and be present with him.

5- Prioritize.  I utilize my time based on my priorities.  I know what are THE MOST important few things to handle each day. I leave the rest to my ‘future’ list.  I do have catch up days every so often, and will sometimes get babysitters to do handle them.

6 – Be Responsible + Manage Expectations . This is about being in integrity with myself and others. I am in the practice of not committing to things that I am not feeling responsible for. This is part of not rescuing. I can be generous, but if I feel like I am starting to resent, I know I’ve taken on too much. I am only responsible for what I know I can manage.  As best I can, I also let others know when they can expect results or actions from me.  When people are communicated with in a healthy way, its healthier for everyone.

7 – Email/Social Media.  This one is the hardest, but I have recently re-adapted Tim Ferris’ 4 Hour workweek idea.  I only check email 3 times per day.   We lose so much time wasting it on endless checking and re-checking  between social media and email.  Check 3 times a day, that’s it.  The world does not fall apart and you don’t get stuck down the rabbit hole.

I recently had a client adopt the mantra: I am more powerful than my phone. She gave up social media after she returned home from work at 8pm. Not only did she have time to talk to her kids, but she finally went to bed with her husband each night! A huge leap in her intimacy and personal relationships. She also slept way better and was more productive at work.

Nicole Doherty Certified Yoga Teacher Instructor

You can recover.

It may feel counter-intuitive to give up things in efforts to be more productive, but research shows that productivity increases when we take care of ourselves.

Living a balanced lifestyle is totally achievable.

Having a self-care and self-love practice is imperative to your well-being and is appreciated by your body-mind and everyone around you.

Reach out if you need help recovering!


xo Nicole


Healing the Emotional Root Leads to Enlightenment

At the core of your being, your inner child is longing to be healed.

The little, playful, innocent child within you is hurt.  When you get triggered that is her kicking and screaming to be heard, seen and loved in the way she wants to be. She’s asking for your help!

You keep trying to push her away.  Sometimes you say, “That wasn’t such a big deal, I’m over it, stop whining and complaining. I’ve forgiven him/her.”  Yet, avoiding and ignoring doesn’t feel supportive to a sensitive child who wants love and attention.

Imagine your own kids. See yourself as them. See your parents as inner children as well.  This will bring about compassion.

The work you are here to do is to heal your inner child that is wounded so that you are no longer a victim of your own life who is not seen, heard, or loved in the way that you want to be.

If you can give that inner child a voice, what would she say?

Your inner child didn’t have ways to express herself in the way you do as an adult, so she internalized her pain and suffering. She believes that the world is against her.  That things are not going to work out for her.  She becomes a Victim because she has lost her knowing that she is love.  She is separated from love.

Your inner child that is wounded develops this ego identity that believes she’s at fault. You may punish and sabotage yourself because you believe you are bad or wrong.  In the end, you don’t ask for your needs to be met.  And you may believe you don’t deserve or your aren’t good enough.  You become the Martyr.

If you can give your inner child a voice, what needs would she ask to be met?

As a child, when you stopped asking for your needs to be met, you stuffed all this pain inside of you, how does that make you feel?

The inner child is angry, raging and sad and feels like she needs to blame and shame herself and others for these feelings of being trapped and mistrusting of the world.

She probably lashes out or criticizes or judges herself and others.  She may even get outwardly reactive and triggered often by others and her relationships. She becomes the Perpetrator. The inner and outer judge.

She feels its her against the world, or she isn’t seemingly getting what she wants when she keeps trying to make things work.  She’s in a tantrum and can’t see her way out.

If you can give your inner child a voice, who and what is she blaming for things not working out?

She really wants other people to get her, hear her and acknowledge her. She keeps pleasing others to make this happen.  She expects that she can change or fix others so it all works out.

She keeps seeking relationships with people that will be ‘on her side’, ‘follow her path’, and get it. She feels safe and in control.

She’s taking on more than her fair share of responsibility and giving more than she needs to.

She’s feeling like other people’s pains are more important than her feelings and feels resentments building up because she’s suppressing her voice.

She becomes the rescuer, to fix, solve, change or control so that she can prove her value.

If you can give your inner child a voice, what would she say and feel like if she could drop all of her expectations and needs to please others and really take care of herself? What is really her responsibility?

If you resonate with any of this you are working in the programming of the 4 addictive ego behaviors – the victim, martyr, persecutor and rescuer.

These are the ego illusions.

In the end, these are stories that are created by the wounded inner child in efforts to survive with its pain and suffering.

What if this could shift?

What if your perception has been clouded by hurt and that’s why things aren’t in full flow?

What if you could express your feelings and be heard and loved in response?

What if you could heal your woundedness and live in internal peace and harmony, so much so that chaos could not touch you?

What if you forgave yourself and others to the extent that you could see beyond the illusion of comparison, competitiveness, wrong, right, blame, shame and rebellion?

What if you could live in so much internal love that you radiate out all needs met, all the time and you could resource from within and your connect with the Divine?

What if you could heal that inner child and experience victory and freedom at deep levels of your being?

What if you could sit in neutrality and let go of the attachments and expectations and live in synchronicities with the Universe and feel undeniably supported?

This is achievable.

This is a practice.

This is the truth.

Healing the emotional root of your traumas and releasing the triggers is the path of enlightenment!


If you want to learn how to to heal your inner child and breakthrough your limiting beliefs, step into your power and live the dreams that you imagine for yourself, contact me for safe and loving support.

(FYI…Photo above is me and my little bro.)