By Kay Newton
Always super-fit and on the go, Jodi Clarke loved extreme sailing, dancing, weight training and body sculpting. She had a successful hypnotherapy practice in Australia, including hypnotising rooms full of thousands of people, yet she felt something was missing. After years of understanding her purpose, she is now launching an international Health, Weight Loss and Wellness Show for those over 40. Her reasons are simple: she is determined to shine a light for others and guide them to change.
Founder and CEO of Awaecnan counselling service, Jodi says, “When we get to midlife, we have a history we can be grateful for – we all have pivotal moments. When we look back, we can see the fork in the road. My mum understood my destiny to ‘bring home the strays’. She saw my in-depth desire and passion to serve those going through tough times. It wasn’t until later, after my personal hard knocks in life, that I saw my true potential.”
Although Jodi was able to help clients overcome their patterns, she somehow missed her own. “Life was great but I thought what was missing was a personal relationship, so I went out and jumped in one all while growing my business,” she recalls of her younger years.
However, life changed in an unexpected way, and she found herself living with an abusive alcoholic, became alienated from family and friends, and two days before her new business venture launch, she found out her partner was cheating on her.
Though devastated and traumatised, she pushed herself in her fledgling business, but when her business partner went missing, her business failed and left her with crippling debt. She tried yet another new venture, but three months in, she started to feel very unwell and tired all the time, until eventually chronic fatigue set in.
“I went from a super-fit and active person to someone who could barely get up and feed herself. Life had drained from my body and I was a shell of my former self,” she recalls. “I tried to fight on but the more I did the worse I got, I couldn’t work and the debt was mounting. There was no medical reason for the fatigue. I was even told chronic fatigue does not exist.”
Jodi says she laughs at this comment now. “I’ve certainly learnt how not to treat a client through this experience. More importantly I’ve also learnt there was gold and gratitude in the trauma. Without them, I would not be where I am today,” she affirms.
Identifying the patterns
With Jodi’s hypnotherapy experience of over 10 years, Jodi started out as a general practitioner. When she began to see repeating patterns across clients, she knew she was on to something. The underlying issue was the same but the person dealt with the issue differently. Some smoked, some ate, some took drugs, but underneath they all had wounds, and when she worked on the wound, the behaviour stopped.
“My passion developed for women who came in for weight loss because everyone was telling them to eat less, move more and they had tried it all. They were devastated, miserable and felt like total failures. Some women had been on diets for over 30 years, so clearly it was not working. It was time to do something different,” says Jodi.
She explains that weight is just a band-aid to the real issue, the wound. “It is not about cleaning up the diet because we are holistic beings – the issues are complex. But if you heal the wound, the mind and body, you no longer need the band-aid,” she says.
We also need to find our own truth. Social norms dictate that we must avoid wrinkles and midriff muffin tops, despite the fact that ageing is a natural process. We also believe we have to work hard to get anywhere.
“Yet when we switch those ideas and let go, that’s when the magic happens. When we focus on what counts and create enjoyment in the present moment, change happens automatically. When we are in flow, not distracted by our modern-day lifestyles, we find joy in all that we do,” says Jodi.
Weight and wellness
The Health, Weight and Wellness Show (HWWS) comes from Jodi’s passion – to guide others to supercharge their wellness. From July 1 – 21, experts from around the globe will talk about anything other than diet.
Jodi says, “HWWS is a place to open the eyes of those at midlife. At this stage in life, women have so much experience. No one needs to ‘be told’ what to do. Yet, we can always do with new knowledge. We do not have to wait for a life-threatening story to pivot. Women want the second half of their lives to be better than the first half and when we learn from others and grab their inspiration, it can catapult us down this wonderful path of change. To a place where we thrive and create an exciting life full of rich experiences.”
Rather than looking at our midlife selves and feeling that there must be something wrong, Jodi believes we must lean into all the things that make us unique, truly love ourselves and it’s from there we can create lasting change.
In turn, we also pass this new energy onto others, such as peers and the next generations. “We give hope and inspiration to others when we change our own life,” says Jodi, who envisions HWWS as a midlife movement, one that has been bubbling under the service of every midlife woman.
“We are going to spend nearly 50 percent of our lives over 40. The world is changing, and it is time to honour midlife. Women have given everything to everyone else, and at this age, it’s time for us now. If one share from the show creates a lightbulb moment for somebody that propels them on the road to change, then I will have done my work.”
HWWS runs from July 1 to 21. Sign up for FREE here.
Kay Newton is an award-winning speaker, writer and midlife strategist. Follow her on KayNewton.com.