FREEDOM — Don’t rush the process. Give yourself permission to change. Freedom is about taking action and moving from knowing that you have to, or would like to do something, to taking small steps towards making that change. As you accept this you offer yourself a more powerful space to grow and understand that change doesn’t happen overnight it’s a constant evolution
Many successful people reinvented themselves in a later period in their life. Jeff Bezos worked in Wall Street before he reinvented himself and started Amazon. Sara Blakely sold office supplies before she started Spanx. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson was a WWE wrestler before he became a successful actor and filmmaker. Arnold Schwarzenegger went from a bodybuilder, to an actor to a Governor. McDonald’s founder Ray Croc was a milkshake-device salesman before starting the McDonalds franchise in his 50’s.
How does one reinvent themselves? What hurdles have to be overcome to take life in a new direction? How do you overcome those challenges? How do you ignore the naysayers? How do you push through the paralyzing fear?
In this series called “Second Chapters; How I Reinvented Myself In The Second Chapter Of My Life “ we are interviewing successful people who reinvented themselves in a second chapter in life, to share their story and help empower others.
As a part of this interview series, I had the pleasure of interviewing Natalie Farrell.
Natalie Farrell is the founder of Yoga Wear Brand Yummy Yoga Girl and Cosmic Soul School. At the age of 33, after spending 15 years of her life as a singer and vocal coach, Natalie quit her job and headed to California to study yoga and find answers to this thing called life! She now shares these learnings an author, intuitive coach and radio presenter.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we start, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your childhood backstory?
Hello! It’s a pleasure to be here and share in this way. I grew up in a quintessential cottage in Sussex, England. I loved school and being with my friends. At the age of 8 I began to learn the piano and I felt a new freedom as I felt a natural flair and affiliation with music. I began to sing too, and my music lessons became the highlight of my week. Performing and communicating became a focus point for me through my teens as I was awarded a place at the BRIT School of Performing Arts and became a Junior Scholar at The Royal Academy of Music in London. I always felt an inner confidence even though I was bullied from 8–12 for “being fat” I was a determined and creative girl with drive and a zest for life. People wanted to be my friend but my passion for life and curiosity amused me more!
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
The Wind Does Not Break A Tree That Bends — Tanzanian proverb In my late 20’s after graduating from music college I began lessons with a vocal coach called Howard Milner. I was depressed at this time in my life and suffering with anxiety and bulimia. I was trying hard to achieve my goals and dreams. In this trying I was suffering and stuck in victim mode. One day Howard shared the above proverb with me, and it cracked me open. I realised I was so tired of pushing through life and feeling like life was an uphill struggle. I found the proverb so beautiful and for the first time in years I gave myself a break. I stopped trying so hard. Gave myself time and asked myself what I actually wanted from my life.
You have been blessed with much success. In your opinion, what are the top three qualities that you possess that have helped you accomplish so much? If you can, please share a story or example for each.
Self Believe — I remember being recommended to audition for the JRAM in London at the age of 15. I felt a rush of honor as I was to be considered a place in this infamous institute of music. I remember being in the audition and using my voice to communicate with the panel — entertaining them and enjoying the rush of this opportunity. When new opportunities arise in my life, I always believe I can do it and love the feeling this gives me as I cherish the experiences which then turn into stories of success to share in this way.
Drive and determination — In my 20’s I founded a vocal coaching business my strap line was you can achieve anything with hard work and determination. Later on, in my 30’s when I founded my own yoga wear brand my tag line was be bold, be confident, be your beautiful self. As a soul led business owner and multipotentialite I am intrigued and driven by change, developing life skills and solving problems. With every dream you have it is possible to make it come true but only with direction, perseverance and focus. Developing your own skills to enhance your life is a must — taking responsibility and ownership for your decisions and reactions is one of the core values I impart with clients and when motivating other soul led business owners.
Let’s Play — Life is for living! injecting play and fun into your life creates balance and keeps you motivated. I love being the creator of my own life carving out the day with a balance of keeping fit, work, walking my dog to a mid-day adventure in the Andalusian hills to write finished by cooking new recipes and rest. Keeping this mix in my schedule of work and play is what makes life so much fun. Work is no longer work but an integrated part of my lifestyle.
Let’s now shift to the main part of our discussion about ‘Second Chapters’. Can you tell our readers about your career experience before your Second Chapter?
As mentioned, I gained a master’s in music and graduated at the age of 24. I began singing with a trio and between performances I began teaching and inspiring passionate young performers to sing and develop their communication tool. I coached over 150 students in my 10 years as a vocal coach with pupils gaining places at prestigious colleges to roles in the West End. I even trained one girl who wouldn’t speak to me as she was so shy, I used my intuition to find ways which led her to feeling confident in herself. After 8 years the teachings inspired her to apply and study for a music degree.
I started to realize I was more of a confidence coach and felt I needed more stimulation to evolve my innate wisdom. I needed to develop my skills too. I had a dream to write books and inspire people all over the world to wake up their potential and believe in themselves and their creative talents.
And how did you “reinvent yourself” in your Second Chapter?
At the age of 33, I quit my job and headed to California to study yoga and find answers to questions I had about this thing called to life! Soon after I met my soul mate and we spent 3 years traveling the world to explore and find our new home as we wished to relocate and live abroad. I now live in Spain and spend my days writing interspersed with walks on the beach with my dog and creating content to inspire people to live a life fueled by their soul. With a passion for small independent businesses, I am drawn to females who have incredible concepts and need a boost in confidence to make life changing decisions. Or my work attracts people who are already confident but seeking new ways to take their business and life to the next level.
Can you tell us about the specific trigger that made you decide that you were going to “take the plunge” and make your huge transition?
I had just found my perfect home with my perfect fiancé and we had decided to start our perfect family. Two weeks later I was single. In rented accommodation with 8 new housemates! My life had turned upside down. The dream of being married and having children — gone. But I knew deep down that this was a blessing. It was my time to wake up. And my lesson was to concentrate on my needs. I realized that no one else could make me happy. Only I could be responsible for that. I began questioning myself, braving the silence and facing the truths. Accept. Forgive. Move on. I felt scared, alive and a new sense of connection with my identity.
What did you do to discover that you had a new skillset inside of you that you haven’t been maximizing?
The new skillset had been triggered during the years of my vocal coaching. As I mentioned I felt like more of a confidence coach than a voice coach. Society teaches us from an early age to curb our voice yet inside of me I felt each voice had an importance. Something beautiful to share. The yoga teacher training then triggered off a new hunger inside of me and unlocked a key to the depth of my teaching. My new skillset was to reconnect people who felt stuck and were searching for something else in life back to their creativity and reignite their power within whilst they discover their soul’s purpose.
How did you find that and how did you ultimately overcome the barriers to help manifest those powers?
I found it by my curiosity for psychology, human behaviour and language. I found a Neuro Linguistic Psychology training and enrolled in the 8-month training programme. This then turned into 2 years of further studying. I became a Master NLP Practitioner, Master Hypnotherapist and intrigued by the principle of self-actualization and self-acceptance I also studied to be a Wellbeing Coach.
I am passionate about the humanistic approach to psychology inspired by the works of Carl Rogers. I knew my work would take a soft approach to guiding the people in need of cracking open to finding their direction yet with a powerful impact.
When combined with my 20+ years’ experience as a music scholar and performer I knew I had a secret formula to get to the root of people’s problems. Giving them back their voice. Allowing them to share their something important with the world in a confident way.
How are things going with this new initiative? We would love to hear some specific examples or stories.
A great work life balance has been an ultimate goal for so many people in the past decade. As I moved into my new initiative, I found myself developing a whole new skillset. I became a digital nomad. The Californian trip had ignited a new thirst for travel, so I decided to self-educate and build an online business. I trained 1–2–1 with fellow entrepreneurs at the top of their field. I devised “my own business course” learning about how to reach my audience with the help of SEO and marketing experts. I employed a PR specialist to guide me and start getting coverage on my story. I also had monthly coaching sessions with public figure and social media expert Daniel Knowlton on how to model my business for the online world.
I launched my first business Yummy Yoga Girl in 2017. A yoga wear and lifestyle brand pioneering the message of sustainability and supporting small businesses. All the designs were exclusively created with the help of fashion designer Sue Mee Maudsley. I remember being in St Tropez in the South of France at the time of my launching my second yoga wear collection launch. It was always a nerve-wracking time hitting deadlines and relying on the word of trust with my manufacturers. The sun calmed my nerves, and I knew after sending the email I could walk to the beach and chill with my soul mate. This level of freedom and living a nomadic life felt exhilarating.
I then began to feature other female led brands to help share their voice and story. This translated into a series of collaborations and new business opportunities. This then transformed into the concept for my Cosmic Soul Sessions radio show with Wellbeing Radio. Yes! This is the magic created by letting your soul fuel the way and why I now refer to myself as a Soulpreneur.
Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
I am grateful to many people for helping me get to where I am now. To Jill Love who at the age of 12 awarded me first prize in a singing competition and helped me gain my place at The BRIT School. To Cyril Lloyd when I was 17 for recognizing my gift for classical singing and recommending me to audition for the Junior Royal Academy of Music. To Howard Milner at 27 for cracking me open and helping me to believe in the strength of who I truly am.
To myself also for keeping the constant belief in moving forward with life and never giving up even in the moments of self-doubt. To my ex-fiancé for helping me wake up and realize how magnificent I am. Without this experience of toxicity in my life I would never have faced my own shadows and overcome my limiting beliefs.
It is my soul mate whom I am most grateful for. As a successful businessman who retired at 47, I have learnt so much from him. He has listened actively to my plotting and planning, advised, supported and offered his innate words of wisdom to guide me to where I am today. Having a 360-degree support system is incredible. We are there for each other in an unconditional way. The root needs such as cooking, and care come naturally and then the sporadic playfulness of running on the beach impromptu jamming sessions keep the balance buzzing.
I used to be a workaholic working 70-hour weeks to pay my mortgage. I used to be a perfectionist, trying hard to fit in to societal out of date moldy castes. Now I show up every day devoted to my soul purpose as I light the way for others to release struggle and accept pain as the path to pleasure.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started in this new direction?
“Remember it’s more than a dream. It is a devotion to staying true to who you are, remaining present and aware that you can achieve more than you can dream.” Natalie Farrell Women Work Speaker 2018
Turning 40 last year on the 5th August I wanted to celebrate with a splendacious gift and write the second chapter in my story. To become an author. Having many writings published already in magazines and publications I felt it was time to honor this skill and a write a book.
My publishing deal for my first book with The Unbound Press was announced one month later. I chose this publication house as Nicola Humber the founder’s work resonated with me at a deep level. Building business connections with trust at the core is one of my principal values. I trusted Nicola implicitly from the first moment I spoke with her to birth my book into the world.
Since signing this deal and dedicating this time to my writing I now understand the visceral meaning and power behind my own quote from 2018. There are plenty of dreams to fulfill in one lifetime. I am excited for my chapter 3 reinvention!
Did you ever struggle with believing in yourself? If so, how did you overcome that limiting belief about yourself? Can you share a story or example?
I struggled believing in myself the most from age 25–30. I left university at 24 and I found the integration process back into society very strange. At the time I was working in retail for a company called Mikey and had been asked to be their deputy manager in Selfridges. But it didn’t feel right.
So, I left Manchester and reluctantly moved back to my family home. Like many students it almost appears we live in a false adult environment whilst attending university. Even though I supported myself financially through university I needed to return to save money to buy a home etc.
The lack of self-belief rooted I believe from feelings of not being enough and rejection. In this 5-year period I started my Voice Academy called The Voice Experience and was happy on a monetary level I was also singing professionally touring the UK and with TV and Radio work. Yet the dream of being an opera singer (and having studied opera since I was 18) never manifested itself into the material world. Auditions and auditioning left me feeling flat and not good enough.
I overcame this limiting belief finally in my 31st year at my NLP training with a process which shifts liming beliefs to transforming beliefs. I also overcame my phobia of being stung by a wasp during this time too. This had a positive chain reaction on my nervous system firing off new neurons and creating a more positive approach to life.
In my own work I usually encourage my clients to ask for support before they embark on something new. How did you create your support system before you moved to your new chapter?
I had begun building a support network for my online business in 2017 and this led to feeling very confident in asking for help and reaching out to others when I needed support. An unexpected support system then appeared in January 2019 when I was asked to be a presenter on Wellbeing Radio. A new family had arrived in my life. A family of soul led entrepreneurs who offered equal measures of support, guidance and respect. The connections just keep on being created from this family of support including my writing community of incredibly passionate and impactful womxn.
Starting a new chapter usually means getting out of your comfort zone, how did you do that? Can you share a story or example of that?
Running an online business pushed me out of my comfort zone. I had to embrace learning a whole new skill set and reach out to influencers and enjoy the challenges of DM! I also dived in at the deep end and become more comfortable with revealing my vulnerability for the world to see. The social platform is a large arena, and I began to step further out of my comfort zone to make my presence known through a different kind of story telling using the forums of blogs, imagery and behind the scenes insights into my life.
Fantastic. Here is the main question of our interview. What are your “5 things I wish someone told me before I started leading my organization” and why? Please share a story or example for each.
The 5 things I wish someone had told me before I started leading my organization are based upon FIVE motivators to help you make those changes you know you want to make in an easy and confident way.
- FREEDOM — Don’t rush the process. Give yourself permission to change. Freedom is about taking action and moving from knowing that you have to, or would like to do something, to taking small steps towards making that change. As you accept this you offer yourself a more powerful space to grow and understand that change doesn’t happen overnight it’s a constant evolution.
- INSTINCT — Notice your actions and reactions. What’s triggering you in a negative way. Listen in to those niggles and begin to attune your behaviors and values to your core belief systems.
- VERSATILITY — Stop trying too hard. Become more open and spontaneous. As you meet new people, you are more preceptive and open to receiving new opportunities. As this happens and you explore new activities, relationships, people and places, you will become more versatile in your attitude and invite in a new unconventional approach to life and business and watch as more opportunities come your way.
- EXPANSIVENESS Say NO to new challenges. As these new experiences and people are starting to enrich your life and you open your mind to new possibilities, you can begin to say no with more confidence. Committing to new challenges and finding the right people who will support and guide you on your ventures.
- CENTERED APPROACH — Be Confident in your own potential. This is in relation to the confidence you will have as you make the changes. The renewed sense of purpose, ambition coupled with the determination to achieve your goals. Being centered is about the inner strength that comes from truly accepting and loving who you are, because you are amazing!
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be?
Create Your Own Soul Revolution — I’d love to see a movement where people are leading a life fueled by their soul and taking responsibility for their own growth. Putting change into action so they can manifest the dreams beyond the dreams and offer the world more soul led businesses. Filling the world and other people’s lives with impactful and insightful sustainable transparent values and information to share. Building communities which uplift and offer opportunities for unconditional growth. It’s happening! One day at a time.
We are very blessed that some very prominent names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US with whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them. 🙂 Tina Turner just love her story of change and listen often to her mesmerizing chanting.
How can our readers further follow your work online?
Thank you so much for sharing these important insights. We wish you continued success and good health!