Corrie LoGiudice: “Love and not fear”

The government needs to start prioritizing access to mental health care the same as they do with physical health. It also needs to start considering public mental health issues, like suicide which is rising each and every year, as a public interest matter. As a part of my series about “Mental Health Champions” helping to normalize […]

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The government needs to start prioritizing access to mental health care the same as they do with physical health. It also needs to start considering public mental health issues, like suicide which is rising each and every year, as a public interest matter.

As a part of my series about “Mental Health Champions” helping to normalize the focus on mental wellness, I had the pleasure to interview Corrie LoGiudice.

Corrie shows people how to release negative emotions like fear to unleash personal growth. She’s a single mom, and survivor of miscarriage, divorce, abuse & suicide loss. She embraced her trauma as a catalyst for personal development and works to inspire others to do the same.

As the host of the Purpose Podcast, Corrie each week showcases strategies and stories from resilient individuals who chose to use their life challenges as fuel to ignite incredible personal growth.

Corrie is an advocate of destigmatizing mental health awareness worldwide, which drives her to provide value and healing to others each and every day. She shares her strategies through her podcast, coaching, speaking engagements, writing, online courses, and social media platforms. She also has been featured in Authority Magazine, Thrive Global, Elite Daily, Girlboss, HelloGiggles & Insider.

Thank you so much for joining us! Can you tell us the “backstory” about what brought you to this specific career path?

Thank you for having me!

If you asked me a year ago if I thought I’d be doing what I’m doing today, I would have said no because my life at the time was on a very different path. I was going into my 15th year helping run my family’s large, regional business. I also was feeling off and couldn’t quite pinpoint why. I had thought it may have something to do with past trauma that I hadn’t addressed, so I put myself back in therapy after a long hiatus. In years prior, I had experienced miscarriage, an abusive relationship, and divorce and found therapy to be very helpful in healing from it.

After a few sessions it became evident that the real issue for me wasn’t my prior trauma, but being unfulfilled in my career. I really longed to be helping people on an individual basis as opposed to in a corporate setting as I had been. One session while I was trying to brainstorm alternative careers to look at, my therapist asked me if I had ever considered life coaching. She felt I’d be a natural fit at it since I’ve time and time again come face to face with major life setbacks and always maneuvered around them relatively easily. At that moment something clicked for me because that profession always appealed to me as being the best job ever, I had just never visualized myself in the role until someone pointed it out to me as even being an option.

My original plan was to start off as a small business coach and do it part-time on the side while continuing to work for my family’s business. I had done this type of work the 15 years prior while working at my family’s organization, so it was very comfortable and an easy transition for me. 
That all changed very abruptly not even a month after I had started my business. My long term, post-divorce partner very suddenly and unexpectedly died by suicide.

In processing my grief about the situation, I came to the realization that many of the life-changing moments in my life stemmed from either myself or others who I loved not effectively knowing how to express themselves emotionally. I had through all my prior trauma leading up to this point finally figured out how to do it, despite having grown up in an extremely repressive household. It’s in this realization that I found my true calling and I’ve been doing it ever since.

According to Mental Health America’s report, over 44 million Americans have a mental health condition. Yet there’s still a stigma about mental illness. Can you share a few reasons you think this is so?

I believe the biggest contributing factor to this is because of the stigma, people automatically assume no one could possibly understand their adversity and as a result, no one talks about it. However, the statistics show the exact opposite.

Taking my own adversity experiences as an example… 1 in 4 women has experienced a miscarriage. 50% of people have reported being in an emotionally abusive intimate relationship at some point in their lives, and subsequently, 50% of marriages end in divorce.

In 2017 800,000 people worldwide died by suicide. That’s a person every 40 seconds. Each suicide loss affects a minimum of 6 people surrounding them, family, friends, etc. So in 2017 alone, over 4.8 million people were affected by suicide loss.

Before I even knew these statistics, I noticed that everyone I talked to about what I went through as part of the conversation shared that they went through a similar experience. I’ve always been very comfortable communicating what my troubles are, sometimes even to complete strangers. I was astounded after I actually researched the statistics to see that my observations were correct.

I had also noticed that each time I shared so openly about my experiences, that for others when they opened up to me about their own, how healing and therapeutic it was for them. People need a safe place to talk about their challenges without judgment. I believe this is the very first step to ending the stigma.

I also believe there are a lot of other factors contributing to the rising mental health diagnosis. In our consumerist society, we’re absorbing a lot of toxicity from our food, products we use, as well as our environments. These factors all affect our biochemistry and are resulting in inflammation that is affecting our mental health. In addition to this, when people do seek medical assistance, instead of attempting to address the root cause of the problem many people are just being medicated for their symptoms, which is kind of like putting a bandaid on an amputation in the long run.

People also haven’t been taught how specifically to live in today’s digital age, which is full of constant stimulation and keeps us in a state of stress and fight or flight. There are proven ways to manage it, but people aren’t finding the information they need in order to do it. That’s what I’m setting out to help with.

Can you tell our readers about how you are helping to de-stigmatize the focus on mental wellness?

Aside from my one on one coaching programs and speaking on the topic, I also have started sharing content through my blog and social media platforms teaching others how to best manage these challenges in an inspirational way. I draw open and honestly from my own experiences and how I got through them.

Probably the biggest project I very recently launched to help with the subject is my new show, The Purpose Podcast. On the show, my guests and I share their incredible stories of adversity and how they not only survived but thrived. Stories range from battling eating disorders, sexual assault, surviving natural disasters, accidents, life-threatening health diagnosis and so much more.

The podcast helps accomplish so many things. It for one gives these survivors a platform to share their own stories, and therefore take control of their own narrative. By sharing their stories, those who are listening to it who may have experienced the same thing will realize they are not alone, as well as get actionable advice on how to work through their challenge from someone who has successfully overcome it.

It’s my hope that through the podcast, more people will be inspired to seek help and talk about their trauma. To lead by example so to speak. The more people who speak up, the less the stigma will be until it’s eventually destigmatized once and for all.

Was there a story behind why you decided to launch this initiative?

I had the idea to start the podcast in the early fall of 2018, and it was the idea that just would not go away! It kept coming back to me every few days. It was so persistent I finally just gave in and started to produce the show. I had no experience in podcasting prior to launching it. It’s truly a passion project.

In your experience, what should a) individuals b) society, and c) the government do to better support people suffering from mental illness?

In general, I think the biggest headway will be made when individuals start to take responsibility for their own mental health. The only actions we have control over are our own. So with that in mind, mental health care is not necessarily something that can be forced on people. You have to want to change your life for the better and work at it. You also have to decide for yourself that you do not want societal pressure on the subject and just do what’s right for you and stop caring what other people think.

Society needs to become more understanding and forgiving of the independent decisions of individuals. I believe the practice of judgment is infecting society at large and as a result, is cancer that needs to be addressed. Once the masses start managing their own relationships from a place of love and not fear, the world will be forever changed.

The government needs to start prioritizing access to mental health care the same as they do with physical health. It also needs to start considering public mental health issues, like suicide which is rising each and every year, as a public interest matter.

I’m also of the belief that there are certain aspects of the healthcare system that need to be strongly evaluated, such as the impulse to prescribe immediately instead of deep diving to find the root cause of an issue. For example, a situational depression such as what can set in after experiencing the grief of losing a loved one is often treated immediately with medication, but it’s a normal part of human life experience and needs to be experienced fully in order to move on from it. It is very different than clinical depression and should not be treated in the same manner. In many instances, the system is making the situation worse and not better.

What are your 6 strategies you use to promote your own wellbeing and mental wellness? Can you please give a story or example for each?

Over the years, I’ve identified ten pillars that I use for myself that have worked wonders for me. I now share them with my clients. Four are physical, and six are mental.

The physical ones include sleep, exercise, nutrition, and hydration. Without these pillars all done in harmony, your body doesn’t have what it needs to function properly. Simply put, your brain can’t function at full capacity when your body is running on empty. Sometimes these four alone are enough to pull someone out of a mental funk.

The six mental pillars include purposeful solitude (which I believe is the cure for loneliness), journaling, meditation, mindfulness, creative expression, and spirituality. With each of these six, I have my clients really buckle down and start to spend time by themselves, in essence re-discovering themselves. In the long haul, each of these practices helps process emotions, boost self-confidence, provide clarity and purpose, and make the client more aware of their own specific needs for mental wellbeing.

What are your favorite books, podcasts, or resources that inspire you to be a mental health champion?

I can list a lot of books that have made a lasting impact on my own mental health. I learned how to use mindfulness as a tool through reading both The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle and The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer. After experiencing the suicide loss of my partner, the book I found most helpful to process the situation was Night Falls Fast: Understanding Suicide by Kay Redfield Jamison. I also found incredible value following all of my personal losses through reading Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy by Sheryl Sandberg & Adam Grant.

There are also several medical professionals I follow whose work I appreciate immensely and their beliefs fall in line with my own on the subject of mental health. They include Joe Dispenza, Kelly Brogan, and Susan David.

Thank you so much for these insights! This was so inspiring!

Thank you so much for having me! I’m honored to be considered one of your Mental Health Champions!

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