Afsheen Shah

Health and wellness wasn’t always a part of my life. 

Growing up in a conservative family I rarely focused on the importance of proper food and nutrition. Being raised in a conservative family, I also was never exposed to sports or activities in the same manner that other kids my age.  I can still remembering wanting so desperately to be more like them so I wouldn’t be shamed because I looked so different.  With my tan skin, boyish haircut hair and heavier frame, I thought I would never be pretty enough, smart enough or skinny enough to fit in.  I thought I would never be “normal”. On the worst days, I would dream of waking up as someone else. It wasn’t long before unhealthy eating habits and destructive lifestyle patterns became my normal coping mechanisms and began to fuel my very existence.

Over time, I became my own harshest critic and BEGan to believe something was wrong with me because I was different. I began to believe I WASN’T ENOUGH.

So I tried to escape who I really was by following dreams that weren’t my own and becoming a person I never truly wanted to be.  Achievement became the name of my game.  But I was achieving only for the sake of proving that I could be everything that everyone else said I could not- not because it represented who I was.  I began achieving to prove everyone wrong. I started running miles upon miles each day in an ill-advised effort to be “skinny”, while ignoring my body and mind’s need for clarity and authenticity. A part of me even believed if I ran far enough and hard enough, I could outrun my fears and insecurities. When that didn’t work, I went to law school because it would prove to everyone - including myself -that I was smart –and capable of being “successful”. I constantly felt as if I had something to prove.  And although I did eventually become “successful” in the eyes of most of the people, I also became incredibly unfulfilled and empty inside.

I believed the more I did, the more worthy I was. 

It was then that I realized that I had spent my whole life following a path that was never really mine, a path I had no desire to continue going down. I realized that my entire sense of self and self-worth had been grounded in the approval of others but in the process, I had forgotten to get the approval of the person that mattered most - ME.

there is a profound loneliness in creating a life that isn’t truly yours. 

I sensed that I was headed for disaster, but the only thing that seemed worse than continuing down this path was not knowing who I would become without it. 

By the time I hit my wall, I was almost grateful. 

It came unexpectedly and I found myself lying in bed, in darkness and solitude – a recurring theme in my life - and unable to find the mental or physical strength to get up or get going.  I was empty, depressed, drained and broken.  I had nothing left to offer to anyone, including me and felt as if I had no one to turn to.  Within months I found myself plagued with undiagnosable health issues and auto-immune dysfunctions which, in addition to manifesting themselves in intense physical pain, had also started taking a toll on my emotional and cognitive health.  After countless doctor visits, self-help books and a nagging feeling that I was meant for more… I took matters into my own hands and invested in my first coach.  I got help and clarity. And I finally started to live life on my terms.

I was finally ready for purposeful change and ready to start on my authentic path. 

My coach inspired me to dig deep and not relinquish my true purpose and follow my desire to be more.  She gave me the support I needed to create the vision of who I wanted to be and release beliefs that had held me back for so long and resulted in my chasing empty goals.  

The fog had finally lifted.

The joy I longed for was finally back in my heart, and the spring was most definitely back in my step!  I was no longer just doing things for the sake achievement and acceptance.  I was now doing things because they symbolized who I truly was - I was finally putting myself first. 

And of course, fear crept in. But I changed my relationship with fear, because I know now that when fear is here, it’s friendly. It means I’m moving towards an edge for me and growing. The quote “life begins at the edge of your comfort zone” kept resonating in my mind.

And thankfully, I had my coach to keep me from getting blocked and stuck.

I felt myself letting go of what other people thought, and for the first time, I tasted true freedom. My emptiness turned into fulfillment.

My hope is to pass that same fulfillment and acceptance of self on to you by inviting you to create your own vision and see just how magical, strong and courageous you truly are.

There is nothing more gratifying and humbling than watching my clients transform and view themselves in a positive and loving manner.  Helping them recognize their true self-worth and the immense value they bring to this world simply by revealing their authentic selves is truly an honor and reinforces my commitment to help others on a daily basis.