When I was eight, I entered a mile Fun Run with my best friend and won it. Not only did I get first place, my time was phenomenally good which shocked everyone as I had not trained for the race, at all.

What followed was a training program that had me getting up at 5:30 every morning before school. Although you might say that’s pretty intense for someone so young, I loved it — at least for a while.

My race was the 5k. I entered every race in the state and was the top runner in my age group from the age 9-12. I had the trophies, newspaper clippings, and attention that most people dream of.

To be honest, I didn’t think much of it as my day was spent very focused on my training schedule, going to school, getting my homework done, and spending time with my friends and family. My days were very balanced, and I can honestly say I was very happy during this time of my life.

But things started to take a darker turn. Parents started to ask a lot of questions about me and my training schedule, especially as I continued to win more races — what was I eating, was I being forced, was this schedule normal for someone my age, and what was the role my father played as my coach? I found myself challenged by parents in the back seats of their cars, their interrogating questions and fixed expressions reflecting from the rearview mirror.

I was confused. My running schedule gave me an incredibly clear mind, I felt energized, motivated, and I excelled at school, what did I do wrong? And what hurt most, they seemed to hate my father — my biggest supporter, my cheerleader, my friend.

When I was twelve, I made the announcement to my father that I no longer wanted to run. He was crushed. To this day, he will fade off commenting on the “incredible gift I had” which does not exactly feel good, but he accepted it and later became one of my biggest supporters in my other endeavors.

When I moved to London and later New York City, I had that same focus and intention to follow through on what I wanted. But what I noticed was a distinct pattern.

I had no problem dreaming big, taking (BIG) action, but what never seemed to follow was receiving the reward. I would find myself stuck in a cycle of striving, learning, researching, studying, and going through the motions of taking action, and yet it never really landed me what I wanted.


As much as I like to believe I was a rebel or a punk to the norm, I discovered that I was terrified of failing and never living up to my potential, and yet the idea of success had a painful association for me.

I wanted to live in peace, and success did not bring me that in the past. I wanted to know who I was, not what everyone thought I should be, living according to others’ expectations.

I pursued art which marked something that no one I knew could touch. It became my private place with entirely different rules which upended all the linear steps to success we generally hear about.

The rules were rooted in connecting with the invisible laws, perception, and self-discovery.

When I found myself working jobs that paid me far less than my worth, working endless hours and being undermined with condescension and abuse, I hit a breaking point.

I could not live this way anymore. It was not about willing myself anymore, I was miserable. So miserable, in fact, I experienced panic for more than a year. My body reached a breaking point. I had lost the plot.

This is when I started asking myself, “When were things easy? When was I really happy?”

I had to start putting things back together, trace the line back to when I learned that it was not safe to ask or receive happiness in whatever form that was. I had to start simple.

I did not start with money, Hell No! I did not like that topic, despite it being what most connected to my anxiety and fear.

But when I finally started looking at what I most avoided, my deep need for security, I not only uncovered my deepest resistances, I began to heal.

As an artist, I hated admitting I needed security because I was fearless, I didn’t need money, I could do anything ;). But the truth is, I thought about it everyday in some form or another and that bothered me.

Money talk aside, I believe in people finding their own answers, those are always the best answers, but it can require being challenged sometimes.

We can get caught up with so many anxieties and fears, we cannot see how they hold us back from stepping more into who we already are.

Healing is an ongoing process, as is self-discovery. And they often happen in tandem. It’s important to honor what you have lived and allow yourself to be patient in your growth.

Catherine xx