Too sensitive, too emotional, too caring... You're such a softy! Do you identify with any of those statements? I know that I've been told many of these at various times in my lifetime.
Today's guest empath mama Heather Nardi talks about the sensitive ones, who are often overwhelmed and overstimulated, and accused of being too sensitive, too emotional, or too caring. The Sensitive Ones was inspired by Heather's healing journey with her daughter, and how the girl’s anxiety, depression and suicidal additation was treated with traditional treatment, landing her in a facility by age 14. This actually became the turning point of trying a more holistic approach to success, which we talk about today. Anyone who identifies with the phrase HSP highly sensitive person or Empath, or knows of someone who is one will enjoy this impactful conversation with Heather. Grab Heather’s book and listen to this insightful interview on the “Call IT in With Dar” podcast.Support the show
Too sensitive, too emotional, too caring... You're such a softy!
Do you identify with any of those statements? I know that I've been told many of these at various times in my lifetime. Today's guest empath mama Heather Nardi talks about the sensitive ones, who are often overwhelmed and overstimulated and accused of being too sensitive, too emotional, or too caring. The sensitive ones was inspired by Heather's healing journey with her daughter, and how the girl’s anxiety, depression and suicidal additation was treated with traditional treatment, landing her in a facility by age 14. This actually became the turning point of trying a more holistic approach to success, which we talk about today. Anyone who identifies with the phrase HSP highly sensitive person or Empath, or knows of someone who is one will enjoy this impactful conversation with Heather.
Before we talk about the sensitive ones, please tell our audience a little bit about yourself, Heather.
● Yes, Darla, thank you for having me. I'm so excited to be here and speak with you and all the other listeners. So a little bit about myself, I am a married mom of two children. And we live in Apple Valley, Minnesota, my two children are, well, I have a boy and a girl. So my daughter is 22 years old. And my son is 16. And really what has motivated me in my business, and what I'm doing right now is my daughter who is a highly sensitive person and an empath. And her journey and our journey mine along with her has inspired me to speak about being highly sensitive and or an empath, and then write a book about that as well. And start a community of supporting other moms that are highly sensitive or empathic.
That is awesome. And the fact that you were inspired to share your family's journey with the world is very enlightening for all of us. So what was one of your biggest motivators to actually get this in writing?
● Yes, so I started writing, it's a memoir. So it's about our personal journey about, let's see, about four or five years ago. And I believe the biggest motivator is just that I want others to be inspired by our story or motivated by our story, because it was a very challenging experience. And even in the midst of really challenging times, I knew there was a reason for it. For our experience, I didn't know it was going to be writing a book, or starting a community. But I knew there was some reason. And so as we came through it to the other side of healing, I then realized I needed to share this story. And it was a story of my daughter having been diagnosed with multiple mental illnesses starting at the age of eight years old, going through the conventional route of medication and therapy, which was recommended by her pediatrician. And then life just seemed to not get better and get worse. So from eight and then when she turned 14, she was in a facility for six months. And then after that, it really felt like we needed to make a shift, like things were not changing. Like I said, they were getting worse. So it led me to a place where I was healing and working on myself and discovered that we needed to take a different alternative. And that led to a holistic path. And there's a lot more to that story. And my book, “the sensitive ones” really gets into that story in a deeper way. But it's really a shift that I think has made such a difference in her life and mine. But we did a lot of healing, then together. And now we're on a more of a holistic path for supporting her anxiety, depression. And so she's been off medication since 14 to 22. And I don't recommend, I mean, it's up to the family what they want to do. So I really tuned in to my intuition and what and my intuition and my daughter to have what she needed. So that was an important piece that I do share in my story.
What a huge struggle, and I bet all those ups and downs. Wow.
● Yeah, I mean, yeah, it got really dark at points, too, you know, she had suicidal ideation. And yeah, so that's it. It's like motivating or inspiring others to know there might be an alternative if you are in that place of really darkness or struggling with mental illness, that there might be a different perspective to look at.
Not only that, but not feeling so isolated or alone, knowing that there's other mothers and other people that have gone through this. So when we talk about this, let's at least define one of the terms we we use, and that's HSP highly sensitive person, and perhaps include Empath, which many people are more familiar with, and what does that mean to you to define
● Yes. So for me highly sensitive person was a phrase coined by Dr. Elaine Aaron, back in the 1990s. And that's more about your mental state, our central nervous system is more sensitive to external and internal stimuli. And it is a trait, not a disorder, about 15 to 20% of society, I feel like it's maybe up in numbers now. So you just feel things deeper, you are overwhelmed by you know, sound and smell and probably being out in crowds because you're taking in and processing information in such a deeper, higher level. So then an empath to me is someone that is a highly sensitive person, usually. And then they take it to another extreme where they take on the emotions and feelings of others as if they are their own. So when I talk about it, I'll say sensitive Empath because I kind of put the two together in my mind, like my daughter is both a highly sensitive person and an empath. So I kind of combine it and say sensitive empaths.
Yes, I love the clarity of your definition. And I would call myself a sensitive empath. And what's kind of funny is before in the 1990s, yeah, I was diagnosed with environmental allergies, that, and that consists of being sensitive to smells, sounds and things in my environment. So I guess the doctors just decided I was highly allergic to the outside environment. And I, you know, I was allergic to perfumes and hair sprays, and, and walking into an automotive department and those types of things. But I know that a more true definition would be a highly sensitive person HSP. And then the empath has always been something that's been with me, and has definitely helped with diagnosing different illnesses and diseases and things that are going on with, with children and adults in their health, physical health. That is my personal experience with it, but certainly not going through a journey like you had with your daughter! So tell us more about how you and your daughter chose a holistic approach to mental health and how that differed from, like, the conventional medical treatment approach that you were on before?
● Right, well, and I just want to go back to what you were saying. It's so interesting how they knew to diagnose you with that allergy piece because your internal system was sensitive to that term they use, I have never heard that until you've used it. And what did you say allergy, environmental allergies? Okay, that is so interesting, because that does make sense to the highly sensitive person. Yeah. So I just wanted to touch base on that again, that was very interesting to me. It's, yeah, so we were so many years, like I said, in the conventional system. And it started, like I said, at the age eight, and it really was therapy, prescription medication, we got to the point where she had school avoidance. So we had like a social worker come in, we had therapy in the home, we had neuropsychology, we had all of the things that day treatments and then six months stay at a facility as well. And so that's kind of the pattern where I'm like, This is not getting better, why is my child seeming to not be functioning, you know, able to function really in, in school or at home, it should be getting better, not worse. And so as I spent time healing myself when she was away for six months, I really worked on myself. I felt called to do that. Started going to metaphysical stores and doing different spiritual type classes, which I had never done or looked into before. You know, drumming and looking into Reiki and all these things in my life. So when she came home, my daughter Ellie, I believe she could feel that shift in me to a higher vibration, a higher space of living. And then she was more open to request, she actually requested to go off of medication. And I feel like it was divinely guided because she doesn't even remember saying it. She said, “can I go off medication? I feel so numb, I don't feel like I'm living life?” And this was 14 year old Ellie. And now when I asked her…she said “ I don't even remember saying that”. But that was kind of the start of the, you know, the change that pivotal moment. And we had to think that through that wasn't like a quick decision because that is scary. When your child has been on that medication for so long. It's like what is life going to be like when she's off. So we did slowly go off of medication. And what we saw was not very many side effects really of her coming off the medication. So that confirmed to me that her body needed to come off. And then we moved into a holistic program to help support her. So we did Reiki, we did crystals, flower essences, essential oils, yoga, meditation, she was attending some classes with me. So at the you know, “metamorphosis center” that's local here. So she was kind of getting into that, that space as well. So I think that was our approach was more looking at the mind and body spirit of a person as a you know, as a being instead of the conventional of where they diagnose, and then kind of band aid, it felt like, just to get you through life. So that was where we really felt like that switch needed to be made. And, it benefited her so, so much. So you know, her life is more thriving than living numb.
Wow, yes, I am so glad that the timing was right for you to grow during those six months, even though the six months were meant to be her treatment. That seems to be your real turning point where you began to learn about all those other things out there that could possibly help her.
● Right. And it was amazing. The right women, mainly women, were coming into my life too, and telling me about different modalities or sharing stories with me. So it was that synchronicity that was happening as well. And I think when you start to open yourself up to a different perspective, or just open your heart and listen, things will come in.
I thoroughly resonate with that, I believe in divine guidance and intuition and the willingness to listen and be open to people being put in front of you. And then the right people just seem to come forward. And in hindsight, it's usually really, really apparent.
● Right? Yes.
So what sort of impact do you hope your story and your daughter's story will make with the readers? What do you hope they'll walk away with?
● Yeah, there's a couple of things that I hope they'll walk away with. And it's really about a perspective, a different perspective on either the mental health of our children, or a perspective of being a highly sensitive person. So what does that mean? You know, what could that be in my life, and then the mental health piece is like, I wish I would have known other opportunities or other directions to go when she was eight, I just followed the doctor's orders, and didn't realize there were many other options for us, we went right into the medications, and that was an eight year old little child. So I really want people to know to like tune into your intuition is so much followed by authority figures, which I think we need medical system, I believe in that balance, but you know, divinely tune into what your child needs, if you could tune into that as well as maybe what your child is telling you what they need. So those are a couple of things that I hope from our story and our struggle that others will take away. And one more thing I guess too is healing. That was really an important piece of the journey was my healing. And then that brought along the healing of my daughter together.
That's really powerful to talk about us healing because caregivers sometimes have nothing more to give if they don't heal themselves if they don't go within.
● Right. And I think that timing… if I wouldn't have had that timing, I'm not sure that that's where she was away, that I would have done so much healing. You know, it was reallya precious time for me where I could focus. I have a son, like I said in the beginning, but he was so young and he was at school, and I had time to be home. So it really was a focus on myself, which was a blessing for all of us. Really.
Yes. And I mentioned hindsight. And as you look back, it was a huge turning point, a huge thing. Right? Yes. So here's kind of a fun question. What do you consider to be your superpower?
● Yes, I was asked this actually in an article too. And what I said was being a Sensitive Empath was my superpower. Because that brought on my perspective, I think we have a different perspective. And we can see things so differently and deeply. We're deep thinkers, and we are able to open our hearts and I think that was allowed for this journey of change for my whole family, and especially for my daughter.I don't know that if I was not if I was not a highly sensitive person or an empath. I don't know that we would have gone through or made the shift. Because I think I would have just kept going, you know, maybe I don't know. But I think being highly sensitive just made me do look so much broader at things.
Beautiful, I think it probably did change your perspective. And I think it's important for our listeners to kind of hear that, because if they've been identifying as a highly sensitive person or as an empath, I know that tendency to think of that as a weakness, about being too sensitive, too emotional, too this to that. And I think it's great for you to express that it doesn't have to be a weakness, in many cases, we can turn that into a strength. And you ended up helping your daughter and now other people.
● Yes, thank you. And I agree. So often people do when they hear that that's, or they resonate with that trait, they do feel that it's a weakness, but there's so much more positive.Positivity to it, if you look for it as well. I mean, we're so creative in the way we think and the way we observe the world, we're, you know, so deeply and we enjoy those small moments in life, as you know, and I think that's why I knew that there was something else. Even in the deepest, darkest times, I had that nudge that there was something else to share from that experience.
Yeah, if any of our listeners who are parenting a sensitive soul, or an HSP, we've been calling to them. What is your top piece of advice?
● Well, I always say: Be patient with yourself. As you're right. Any parent really be patient with yourself. But often as a highly sensitive person and an empath, we are raising a highly sensitive child like me. So being patient with yourself because we're healing just like my journey. You know, we're healing as we're trying to raise these children or guide these children. So they're going to be bringing up some of your old childhood wounds that you might have struggled with, because our parents probably didn't know the best way to parent us. So I always say our children can be a mirror for the unhealed areas of our lives. So that will be coming up for you and just so just be patient and compassionate with yourself.
Beautiful, patient and compassionate with yourself. I think we need that life advice.
● More often than we give it to ourselves. True. So that is your reminder from me
And then before we bring our conversation to a close, could you please tell our listeners and next step if they'd like to start working with you, or get their hands on your book, or just have a need to know more?
● Yes, thank you for asking. My book is called “The Sensitive Ones” healing. Gotta get it right, healing and understanding your child's mental health. So that is available on Amazon and really any book store. So if you want to go to a local bookstore, they can search it up and get it for you. But Amazon has it available in paperback and Kindle right now. So if you want to look for that, if you just type the sensitive ones, it will appear there for you. And then also, if you want to check me out more or work with me, I do work one on one with people and I do have a lovely Facebook group, community and Dar is in there as one of our experts to share. You can go to the empath mama… actually its emppathmama.com is our website. And if you go there, you can be directed to all different areas. So to our Facebook community, to any type of programs I'm offering to, the writings I've done. And there too, you can find out more information about “ the sensitive ones.”
Ah, awesome. So thanks so much, Heather, for spending this time with us. It's been very, very enjoyable. I'm just going to put this information for everybody on the show notes page. So you don't have to like hit replay and listen to Heather give it to you again, you can look on the show notes page. But Heather, I'm just feeling called to ask you, is there something else that you would like to just leave everybody with before we conclude?
● I think really, what is important for people is to listen to your intuition. So whatever I am saying, tune in and see if it does feel right for you. I say that in a lot of my programs as well like if whatever information I'm giving to you if it doesn't feel right to you don't use it. I feel like so often there's so much stuff on social media or other places about doing this, do that really just tune into your own inner wisdom and guidance and do what feels best for you.
Beautiful, do what feels like your truth because we all have our own truth.So do what resonates and synchronizes with you. Yes. Beautiful, Heather. Thanks so much.
● Oh, thank you for having me.
Transcribed by https://otter.ai