For a long time in my life, I thought I was happy until I realized I wasn´t.
All things on the outside seemed to be perfect, but inside I was just sad. Four years ago, I was getting unhappier every single day, waking up every morning with anxiety and at night crying myself to sleep. At this time, I felt so unloved but mostly disconnected from myself. So I did what I thought would help…because I had to do something! So I took a sabbatical from work and went to train as a Yoga Teacher. I felt better whilst training but after I got back things just got worse.
On paper, I had “everything”, a flat, a husband, a cat, a car, a good paid corporate job as Global Head of New Business in a global company, friends and family around me.
So I came back from Mexico, went back to my job, practised a lot of Yoga and started teaching. Things were going well and I wasn’t really sad for a while. Then I got a job offer in London and I decided to take it. So I moved to London without my husband. Honestly, at the start, I was so happy about it. I thought it would help me to focus on something new and would help our marriage because it was at a very bad place back then.
We were constantly fighting, not understanding each other. Back in the days, I was blaming him for all of it. But it wasn’t him it was me. I was so sad and so unfulfilled with my life in general and expected him to help me and to make me happy. That obviously wasn’t really working.
So I thought if I move to London I have something I can focus on and we can have a little bit of distance which will make things better. After one month in London, we decided to take a break from our marriage because we both thought we needed some time to ourselves.
Making all these changes didn´t make my life better, but worst.
In London without my friends and family, I fell into a severe depression with sleep deprivation, and I lost the will to live. I didn´t want to get up in the mornings because I had no purpose in life. I just was sad all the time; things I loved or that made me laugh at didn´t positively impact my mood. No matter where I went, what I did, with who I was, the only feeling was sadness. I felt hostage in my own body. Once a day, minimum, I started crying like a waterfall, no matter if I was alone at home or in public.
It was actually a diagnosed depressive anxiety disorder. I felt I lost everything, my husband, my friends, my family, my colleagues, my home. I was just alone in London and at that time I couldn’t feel joy for anything!
My nephew was born at that time and I wanted to have this feeling of love and happiness when I held him in my arms the first time but I just couldn’t feel it.
At work, I functioned somehow, but every day on the way there I was crying while cycling and had to redo my make-up in the garage before going up to the office. When I opened my laptop and looked at my 200 emails in my inbox every day I felt so overwhelmed.
I constantly ask myself how am I going to survive this day?
Constantly thinking, I don’t want to be here, I don’t want to do this. This is not the life I want to have. This is not how I imagined being. That was going on for a good four-month. Sometimes when I was cycling back home on the busy London streets I thought to myself if a bus would hit me now wouldn’t be the worse thing. I ask myself if life could get any worse than that. I was so desperate for change. I tried many things to improve the way I felt but nothing seemed to work.
All I knew was I wanted to get out of it somehow. So I tried therapy which sometimes made it better for a couple of minutes after the session. Still, my general state was the same, even after ten sessions when my therapist suggested taking antidepressants.
But something inside me knew that I had the strength to fight this on my own.
It was October, six months after I moved to London, feeling depressed constantly. This day was probably the worst day of my depression. I was constantly crying and couldn’t stop myself. So in the evening I had a call with my coach and explained what had happened and how I felt, and she gave me the best advice ever.
She said, “Nadine, you need to make a decision.
You can stop feeling the way you feel. Just decide you don’t want it anymore. When she said this, something inside me clicked! Something changed. After that call I told myself, ok, I am going to be happy now! This is it. First, I changed my physical state from my shoulders and head hanging down to sitting upright, with my chest up. At that moment I had decided that I didn’t want to cry anymore! I had enough of crying. I cried every day for the past one and a half years, and I didn’t want it anymore. So I put on some happy music, and I was forcing myself to smile. Of course, I wasn’t feeling happy immediately, but I decided I want to feel happy – which was very powerful! I realised we can decide how we feel. If we change our thoughts and our physical stage, we can change our emotions and how we feel!
During my depression, I constantly focused on what I have lost and how bad my life was. Always being in the past with my thoughts and also having no hope for the future. I couldn’t even imagine a future without my husband. All the plans and dreams for my life were gone. And this was what I was thinking for months.
So I told myself I am changing these thoughts now. Life is good! I started to appreciate things about my life.
That I had a roof over my head, I had my family; I had a good job. I had friends, even if they weren’t in London. I had people I could call every day who would listen to me. Mainly I had my physical health, and I had Yoga. So I tried to focus on that!
Then I started to research what makes people happy! It took me a long time to find things that worked for me. Trying them and implementing them into my life.
Another thing I changed was the way I was talking to my friends. Instead of calling them and telling them how sad my life was, I told them now about my little achievements and the things I appreciated. After changing my thoughts and words, I felt already stronger and happier and slowly. I could also notice the improvements from the things I changed before, like improving my diet, being more healthy, doing more Yoga.
Finally, I decided to travel again, so I went back to Mexico, where I did my teacher training and practised twice a day for ten days. When I came back from Mexico, I decided that I wanted to travel the world. But I didn’t quit my job immediately. I started making small changes step by step to become better, happier, healthier and stronger. I worked a lot on myself and my personal development to change my inner state first before I quit my job and started travelling the world and teaching Yoga.
Also, I realised how powerful we are. We can change our world and change our lives, but it starts with changing something within. Once you make a shift within, then you can start making changes on the outside. And your outside world will change automatically.
I had that desire to help people! This is what I started doing. Supporting professional women to overcome depression or anxiety means so much to me because I have this knowledge and understanding, and it took me so long to figure this out! I tried so many different things, read so many books, attended many seminars, studied to become a professional life coach myself. Overall to be where I am now taking me such a long time, actually my entire life. But from being depressed to being happy, fulfilled and loving how I am, maybe a good three years! I want to help you to get there faster! And share all the knowledge I have now with you. I can not wait to share this with the world.
My mission is to transform as many lives as I can.
My coach also said this to me in our last call, that I will help so many people, but I didn’t know-how. But now, I have these tools and found a way of helping people. And this is what I am doing now! I am travelling the world, teaching Yoga, running Yoga retreats and coaching people, helping them be happier. So I am living the best life I could ever imagine, and I am so happy within myself.
I did my training to become a Professional Life Coach because I want to help others to discover more happiness as well. No matter if you are suffering from depression or just seeking more. I can help you to find more meaning and purpose in your life and to become happier to live life under your terms.
See you soon! Love Nadine