“When we follow our natural rhythm and cycle we are empowering ourselves and listening to our bodies” – Chloe Isidora
For 10 years, Chloe Isidora was living her dream job as a fashion editor, styling shows and fashion editorials for some of the most respected names in the business. However, she soon found herself feeling unmotivated, losing her sense of passion and self-worth. She was burning out. Searching for something more meaningful, in October 2013 Chloe enrolled in a short course on Shamanism. Not long after she completed her course, her boyfriend at the time ended their three-year relationship, and the next day she was fired from work. The universe was telling her it was time to change her life, and with that Chloe was able to open up her life to Shamanism completely.
Keen to hone her craft, Chloe travelled through the East and West Coast of America, Peru, Chile, Thailand, and India, studying at the Oneness University and was initiated in Shamanism, Crystalline Consciousness and Herbalism.
Fast-forward to today and Chloe now works with Divine Feminine empowerment, the practice of being in one’s body and embracing one's sensuality and sexuality. She also creates workshops and women’s circles dedicated to empowering others to transform by shedding limiting thought patterns and beliefs and ultimately finding their way to self-love. She's also a big believer in connecting women to their menstrual cycles, as a way of harnessing their inner power. On top of this, Chloe has just finished writing her very own book Sacred Self Care: A collection of ceremonies and rituals to ease the mind, connect to the heart and honour the moment.
Before being introduced to Shamanism, in what way did wellness and spirituality feature in your life?
Chloe Isidora: I have always been interested in food. To begin with, my wellness started with looking at my diet, changing the way I ate, learning and eating nourishing foods.
How did Shamanism change you?
Chloe Isidora: I began to feel so different. The dark cloud that I felt was always hanging over me moved. I started to get an excitement for life again and I became hungry to learn and experience more.
Could you tell us a bit more about your experience at the Oneness University?
Chloe Isidora: When I first start healing I had a misconception that it was going to be all sparkles and rainbows, love and light. Well, that’s just not the truth. In my personal experience, I have had to go through very painful, dark times to then connect to my light. My time at Oneness was probably my biggest purge of heavy emotions. The course I took was 28 days long and for most of it, we were in silence. I went through an internal process where all of my most horrible feelings of self-hatred, self-disgust, worthlessness and hating everyone else came up to the surface. All these feelings I had repressed for so long came up to be felt and experienced and purged out of me to make space for the new. That was my process, however, every person has a very different experience whenever they go for deep healing.
What does wellness mean to you?
Chloe Isidora: To me, wellness is about loving and caring for all parts of myself and treating myself as sacred. That means tending to my physical body through movement, massage, exercise and breath, eating nourishing foods. Tending to my mind through stillness and meditation, spending time alone in nature just being in my own energy field. And laughing a lot and not taking myself too seriously.
What are the misconceptions of the wellness industry?
Chloe Isidora: I'm sure there are many misconceptions but the one I will focus on is around perfectionism. Often wellness can send out a message of ‘eat the perfect diet and you will feel like this’ or ‘meditate every day and you will feel like that’. But the reality is we’re ever changing and each of us is so unique, one morning you might need yoga and the next you might need to go for a run. I feel it is to tune in daily to what your needs are and listen and follow your own guidance, instead of following a supposedly perfect plan. I also feel the idea of ‘shiny happy people’ is also a misconception, we all have emotions, we all feel up and down. And all emotions are ok to have and feel – it’s totally fine to cry, to be upset and to hurt; we are all human, feeling is part of the human experience.
In our digital age, why is it so important to connect to one’s roots?
Chloe Isidora: Social media often brings us out of ourselves – how many times have you noticed you have been scrolling and don’t even know what you have looked at? It can also feed the feeling of lack and comparison, so it’s easy to lose your sense of self. All of my personal practices are about coming back to my centre, coming home to myself, feeling anchored and connected inwards. It’s finding your roots within so you become strong in your centre but are still flexible.
What is Divine Feminine empowerment?
Chloe Isidora: My personal feeling about Divine Feminine empowerment is that it is about embodiment, for me, it is about being in my body rather than in my mind and embracing my sensuality and sexuality. Allowing the full spectrum of myself and embracing all my different sides, from the kind, compassionate, soft and loving to the tearful, raging, chaotic and everywhere in between.
You work a lot with connecting women to their menstrual cycle, why is this important?
Chloe Isidora: Connecting and being in tune with our menstrual cycle is everything. It’s total madness that one of the most integral parts of our womanhood has been hidden in the shadows for so long. If you think about it when you first got your period, how did you feel? Was it celebrated or hidden? When you said that you had your period, was it greeted with an ‘oh no how annoying’ or ‘you’ve got the curse’? Ingrained in our psyche is that our periods are inconvenient, they stop us from doing things, they’re dirty and should be hidden and not spoken about. I believe that this was originally seeded to disguise the immense power that women can have access too. When we follow our natural rhythm and cycle we are empowering ourselves and listening to our bodies.
A brief overview of how the cycle works, within the menstrual cycle is our own spiritual journey; a month process of death and rebirth, a letting go and receiving, which is a natural shamanic cycle. When a woman is menstruating, it is a powerful time where we can let go of the month that has passed and be open to receive direct messages from spirit. Think of it as your inner winter, just as in winter everything dies, goes back to the earth and rests. Usually, we power on through, not giving space or time to rest during our bleed, however, if you do rest this refuels your energy for the month ahead. Often when women suffer from period pains it’s our wombs saying stop, rest, slow down and listen to me. When we do give space to rest, we receive so many insights.
The next phase is pre-ovulation, this can be likened to inner spring. Just like spring when the new buds are forming there is a sense of newness and tenderness, there can be a sense of new beginnings, of playfulness and curiosity. Then we go into ovulation which you can think of as inner summer, imagine you are in full bloom, magnetic as your sexual energy is at its peak. There is a feeling of I can do it all, everything is possible and a wave of productivity. And then we go into the premenstrual phase and you’re hit with the inner critic which often sounds like “What am I doing with my life? Who even am I? I’m wasting my life!” During this phase I used to feel so low and depressed, I really thought there was something wrong with me. But now knowing how the map of my cycle works, instead of falling apart I now take extra care of myself, doing all the things that nourish and support me. Why I think it’s so important to work with our cycles is it is so practical. I know when I’m going to be on form to meet people, when I can be super productive, get shit done and when I’m going to need more time alone and space to rest and receive.
What is the most significant lesson you’ve learnt on your journeys?
Chloe Isidora: That it’s all an inside job. Only you can change yourself, only you can make yourself happy, only you can love yourself, nobody else can do this for you. It’s all about what you choose to believe and how you choose to engage.
What advice would you give to someone who doesn’t feel they have the confidence to leave their job or lifestyle that they aren’t happy in?
Chloe Isidora:I always feel awareness is the first key, just knowing that you want to make a change puts the wheels in motion. Look at the things you can begin to change and start with the small ones. Notice what sparks your heart and what makes you feel excited – follow those leads. Notice what brings a sense of joy into your daily life, start with the small things that bring you joy, do them often. It can be tiny, from really enjoying your cup of tea or spinning around in circles. Also spend time in nature alone, walking or lying on the earth – she is the most amazing healer and resets our systems I find I always get a new fresh perspective.
How do you think having a busy lifestyle affects our ability to find self-love and peace?
Chloe Isidora: Being busy is the best distraction as it stops us from feeling our feelings. When you’re in that space you rarely tune into what your actual needs are, like maybe resting, listening to your body and emotions. When we slow down, we have an opportunity to put self-love into practice.
How long would you say it took you to reach a state of fulfilment and empowerment?
Chloe Isidora: I think that is an ever-on-going process. All I know is that I now feel so totally different than how I used to five years ago or even from last year. My perspective has shifted, what I might have thought of as a problem before I now see as an opportunity. When I’m faced with a challenging situation I now always ask myself how I can grow from this, that makes me excited as there is room for transformation.
What is the most rewarding part of your work?
Chloe Isidora: The essence of my work is about remembering that we are sacred, so whenever someone comes for a session or workshop and they touch their own connection to their self and their own sacredness, that fills me with joy and gratitude. I by no means make that happen, I just hold space for you to do that yourself.
What are some of your favourite wellness products?
Chloe Isidora: I love natural products, one of my favourites is the AMLY Radiance Boost Spray, my skin glows when I use it. I have just created my own essential oils range that will be coming out next year, stay tuned!
What can we expect from your upcoming book?
Chloe Isidora: My book is called Sacred Self-care and is filled with self-love and self-care rituals, ceremonies and practices. There are super simple ones to start your day, to stay connected to your centre. There’s also full moon fire ceremonies, water blessings, meditations and visualisations. Each practice is about coming home to yourself becoming your own guide and own authority.
What to you is the future of wellness?
Chloe Isidora: I believe the future of wellness is about authentically loving, honouring and respecting ourselves, others and our planet.
Sacred Self-care is out in May