Because You Are Worthy Of Thriving.
For the women who are done with dieting and trying to hold so tightly onto control, as an attempt to find some sense of certainty with the ocean of their internal experience.
For the women who are done with behaviours like binge eating and using food for more than hunger, nourishment and pleasure.
For the women who are sick of hating their body and want to learn how to find acceptance, so they can change their relationship to their body.
For the women who are done using exercise as punishment and desire to find a way to move that connects them to their body, rather than disconnects them.
For the women who feel held back by their body image (That’s the purpose of fat phobia and diet culture, which are Sexist, by the way. If women are hyper-focused on food and body, we can’t know or have access to our inner power. Speaking of power, I’m not talking about the power over dynamics of supremacy culture, but the power that comes from sovereignty, knowing ourselves, connection with our heart, soul and truth).
For the women who are seekers.
For the highly sensitive ones.
For the ones that know they’re here for something more.
For the women who are done with the not enoughness that runs their life and want to finally feel a sense of humble confidence, that only comes from deeply knowing yourself.
For the women who feel held back in their expression and creativity.
For the women who are done being the “nice girl” and vow for wholeness instead. (Thanks to Jeanette LeBlanc and her writing prompts that introduced me to “Wholeness before Goodness.”)
For the women who want to learn how to fully trust themselves.
For the women who are done letting the system we’re born into dictate how they feel about themselves.
For the women who are ready to turn towards their feelings and come back home to their bodies.
For the women who see through the beauty myth distracting them from the truths in their hearts and souls.
For the women who are done with the spiritual bypassing, love & light, hyper-positivity, and are ready to include the shadow.
For the women who are ready to look underneath the food.
I guide you back home to your body so you can use the wisdom of your emotions, intuition and inner child to change your relationship with food and your body, because you deserve to thrive in your life. Feeling ready? Go here.
I’m Richelle Ludwig (she/her/hers) and I’m a Weight Neutral, Somatic Coach and MindBody Therapy Practitioner. I am anti-diet, trauma informed and becoming more social justice informed. My roots come from the Netherlands, Canada (I’m currently reclaiming my Metis roots on my paternal grandmother’s side) and Austria. I help highly sensitive women change their relationship with food and their body through building emotional intimacy and body sensation literacy, without spiritual bypassing.
10 years ago I became a seeker in an effort to heal my eating disorder. For the past 5 years I’ve worked with 70+ client’s in a mostly 1:1 capacity and a couple of small groups, including my 6 month program, ECLIPSE. My work is deep and my client’s often work with me for 6-12 months. From July 2018 to July 2020 I’ve also mentored and coached over 40 women who were training to become coaches themselves, in 3 rounds of a 10 month, 400hr certification through Hungry For Happiness.
I write about inner child work, real self-love and more so self-acceptance, worthiness, needs, as well as all things feelings over on Instagram, Facebook and my blog, because I want women to understand that a diet is not the solution to the problem, which is internal and systemic. I believe the work starts internally and then we can expand to address the systems, which is why I’m currently learning more about social justice and oppression from an intersectional and liberatory approach.
My client’s want to free themselves, so they can experience life fully without the shackles of attaching their worth to how their body compares to the societal ideal.
Here’s what got me ready to help you change your own relationship with food and your body:
I worked for a year and a half as an EMT-A and then went on to get my diploma as a Therapy Assistant through NorQuest College. I worked as an Physical Therapy Assistant and Occupational Therapy Assistant for 11 years. What this means for you is that I’ve always been in a helping field with people. I have experience supporting people of different demographics and understand that my own experience in the world is not the only experience.
I have a diploma in Natural Nutrition through the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition(2013) and a certification in Functional Diagnostic Nutrition(2015). These programs helped me see health differently and move away from dieting, although I did become Orthorexic. What this means for you is that I understand how food can be used as medicine. I also have experience with the unhealthy obsession with health, understand bio-individuality and will never talk to you about what to eat, but teach you to trust your own body. I also will not judge you if you have a desire to eat more nutritiously and will help you get clear on the intention behind this, so that it’s not coming from fear and control, because I believe you get to choose what thriving means for you. I understand that health is so much more than what we eat, and that social determinants impact our access to whole foods as well.
I have training in the Cognitive Approach For Problematic Eating(2016). What this means for you is that I know how to support you in reprogramming old beliefs that no longer serve. I understand that so often we have different schema’s influencing our perspective. Schema’s describe a pattern of thought or behaviour that organizes categories of information and the relationships among them. This has an impact on how we feel we need to be versus the truth at our core.
I have my 200hr Yoga Teacher Training(2017) with Michele Theoret and Danielle Murray through Empowered Yoga, as well as 25hrs in Movement Medicine (Intelligence of sequencing) and 25hrs PTSD & Trauma Informed Yoga with Tiffany Rose. This is where I was first introduced to deepening the connection with the body, cultural appropriation, consent, spiritual bypassing and the importance of becoming trauma informed. What this means for you is that I have a deeper understanding of and ability to guide you back home to your body, mindfulness, and how to use breath and movement for embodiment. I’ve also taken an Intuitive Yin training with Mallorie Buoy in April and May of 2021, that’s focused on supporting the nervous system and developing interception.
I took the Hungry For Happiness Coaching Certification(2018), and got the opportunity to mentor and coach in their signature 6 month group coaching program, as well as mentor and coach in 3 rounds of the 10 month, 400hr coaching certification. This program went deeper into embodiment for me, as well as learning to feel emotions, inner child work, intuition, energy and spiritual connection. What this means for you is that I have experience working with women on the path back home to their body and learning to feel. I also learned what doesn’t work in this program through personal experience and the experience of other women I mentored. I’ve come to see the importance of doing our developmental healing before we jump into spiritual concepts, as it can be easy to spiritual bypass and get stuck in shame spirals. I’ve also come to understand the importance of being trauma-informed.
I did a Year of Love Masterclass(2019) followed by 9 months of couples coaching(2020) with Kelsey Grant, which deepened my understanding of relationship, helped me work through attachment trauma and understand mine and my partners attachment styles, begin to practice setting boundaries and develop more communication skills in expressing needs, feelings and boundaries. Kelsey also helped me work through a number of things I had spiritually bypassed, deepen my sense of self-worth especially around my sensitivity (P.S. I hosted one in-person and 2 online screenings of the movie Sensitive: The Untold Story followed by an inspired conversation based on the work of Dr. Elaine Aron), and fine tune my intuition leading to a deeper sense of self-trust. I truly learned how to hold space and validate through Kelsey’s modelling of this with me. What this means for you is that I’ve become more able to attune to my client’s needs, have a greater overview of relational dynamics and can support you with inner child work through attachment styles as well. I am also able to pass on communication and boundary setting skills.
I have level 1 of a Somatic Stress Release Certification(2019) with Dr. Scott Lyons. This training introduced me to the window of tolerance (resilience) and gave me a trauma informed lense for embodiment and feeling our emotions. To learn more about the Stress Response Cycle check out my blog, What Is Somatic Stress Release? What this means for you is that I have a trauma informed approach and understand how to titrate and work within your unique window of tolerance. This is important to me because I see how shame is created in the personal development world that comes from being pushed outside of your window of tolerance and being told to push through the resistance. I’ve personally experienced this myself, as well as the contrast of not experiencing shame and moving at the pace of my own body’s readiness to heal. The latter created an environment for deeper levels of healing and growth. I understand that the more we push outside our window of tolerance, the more resistance we actually experience. What we want is to work at the edge of our window of tolerance in a gentle approach, while trusting the body.
I’ve taken Kimberly Johnson’s, Activate Your Inner Jaguar course (2019) specifically for myself. This program reiterated the fact that healing at a nervous system level is slow, subtle and takes time. After taking the Somatic Stress Release certification I wanted to integrate more of the work for myself before I began teaching it. This program helped me deepen my understanding of the tools on an embodied level. We went deeper into orienting, tracking, building capacity in the nervous system, pendulation, the window of tolerance, sympathetic dominance and parasympathetic dominance. I also took Irene Lyon’s 21 Day Nervous System Tune-Up for the same reasons. I also took a Masterclass with Bo Forbes called The Science, Psychology & Social Context of Body Image. This year, I had the privilege of learning from Jane Clapp in her Traumatic Stress And The Breath course with Jennifer Snowden.
I completed the MindBody Therapy Certification (August 2020) through Embodied Philosophy (Please note: This does not make me a Therapist. I’m a practitioner of MindBody Therapy and a coach). This is a 300hr certification and teachers on the faculty include; Dr. Scott Lyons, Dr. Rae Johnson, Dr. Christine Caldwell, Dr. Albert Wong, Dr. Maureen Gallagher, Dr. Peter Levine, Dr. Judith Blackstone, David Weinstock and more. This program is trauma and social justice informed. It draws on Somatic/Embodied Psychology, Contemplative Therapy, Mindfulness, Transpersonal/Eastern Psychology, Internal Family System (parts work), Somatic Experiencing (Trauma Therapy), Somatic Stress Release, Humanistic and Strength Based Therapy, Gestalt Therapy, Social Activism, Focusing Technique, MindBody Medicine, Body-Mind Centering, The Realization Process, Attachment Theory (Embodied Approach), Non-Violent Communication (Somatic Approach) and more. What this will mean for you is that I’ve continued my learning in becoming trauma informed, as well as social justice informed. I’ve gaining more tools and practice and depth in my toolbox to support you in your journey back home to your body. This program has really taught me skills that have allowed for me to support client’s in learning to feel their body sensations and emotions more effectively.
I’ve started learning from Kelly Diels and took her, Feminist Fix For Your About Page Workshop. I am committed to continuing to learn about ethical business, so that I am not using manipulation, privilege or shame in any of my marketing, posts or blogs. She talks about the Female Lifestyle Empowerment Brand and I do not want to build a business leveraging my own privilege to create authority over other women. Integrity is important to me. I also took Rachael Maddox’s ConSensual Business Course, which is trauma informed and takes into account systematically ethical approaches, as well as being part of the solution when it comes to capitalism. I don’t like or agree with, what a large part of the coaching industry is doing when it comes to toxic convincing and shaming people for not investing in themselves. A high level of consent for me and my client’s is what feels real and good in my system. I received 6 months of mentorship and supervision from Thais Sky from March to September of 2021, because I do deep work, and remaining ethical in that work is important to me. Working with Thais supported me in deepening into the relational aspect between myself and my client’s and how to work with these patterns that show up in our relationship.
In the summer of 2020 I took Dr. Tee Williams 10 week Foundations of Social Justice course to deepen my knowledge and understanding of social justice from both an intersectional and liberatory lense. I also completed Inner Activism, a 300hr Embodied Living & Leadership Training. This training amalgamates anti-racism education & colonial awareness in Canada, the physiology of oppression, race & disability justice and dismantling white body supremacy, alongside traditional indigenous epistemology & somatic practices.
Over 4 years ago in therapy (isn’t therapy great?) I had an awakening around the Indigenous part of me I had rejected. My grandma on my dad’s side is Metis and I had this deep realization that I’d pushed down for years. I’d felt shame about this part of myself growing up because of the way Indigenous people are talked about in our culture. Because of the blatant racism towards them. So I had rejected this part of myself. I had hated this part of myself. I was taught to. I also began to learn about the truth of residential schools and what actually happened to the Indigenous people. It shook me to my core. I felt deep sadness and anger. This is nothing compared to what most BIPOC experience. I know that I have white privilege and this is why I am committed to this deeper work in the world. I am committed to my own work with anti-racism, oppression and social justice, and am open to how that will evolve in my life and business.
On that note, if my work speaks to you and you’re ready to change your relationship with food and your body, so you can thrive and really do so from a place of feeling your innate worth, check out my work with me page for information on 1:1 and group coaching. My next round of my group program, ECLIPSE is happening February 2021. If you’re already feeling ready to hop on a Discovery call, so we can get to know each other better and decide together if it feels like a good fit, email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or DM me on IG.
Pretty Is A Lie
What if I told you, the word ‘pretty’ is a skin deep, six feet letter prison they put you in.
They say, “If you lost some weight, you’d be so pretty.” They say, “If your skin was clearer, you’d be so pretty.”
But what they really mean is, “If only you looked like our mass-produced ideal, you’d be so pretty.”
Let me tell you a secret they do not want you to know, nothing about you is pretty nor will it ever be so.
You see, pretty is too small and simple a word to capture the exquisitely complex human phenomenon you are,
every atom of you was plucked in the quiet cosmic moments between supernova and stars,
A carefully chosen palette of your skin, your eyes, your muscles and bones from sunsets and skies.
So when they tell you about how pretty you could be if only- Cut them off and say ‘pretty’ is nor your worth or value nor something you have ever aspired to be.