You are in for a treat! We are taking the show NEXT LEVEL with what it means to live an EMPOWERED life, through EMBODIMENT. My guest today exemplifies the name of her business, Beauty In Movement. She is truly a beacon of radiance to all she meets. Through her holistic hair care and Hula Hoop Dance Classes, she is offering the world an opportunity to live as an expression of JOY. The Hula Hoop, and Laura, were one of the biggest catalysts in my journey of Alcohol Free Living, and I am forever grateful. It has changed how I see myself as a Woman, how I experience my body and how I process my emotions. Hoop dance with Laura is so much more than just a super fun activity, it is a truly spiritual and healing experience from beginning to end. It creates a sense of community and a door to come home again to yourself. Laura, I can't thank you enough from the bottom of my heart.
Watch Laura IN MOVEMENT HERE (it's inspiring)
Don't miss Laura's upcoming online series starting September 14th! Sign up HERE!
Check Out a video of what to expect from online hoop dance and meet Laura!
Ignite the Feminine Workshop LIVE in Portland, OR August 23rd 10:30-12 pm
Meditation, Yoga, Hoop & YOU! With Laura & Mary Info HERE!
Watch my Hoop skills all thanks to Laura!
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Welcome welcome. My name is Mary Wagstaff. I am a life coach. Ended a 20 year relationship with alcohol without labels, counting days, or ever making excuses in this podcast, we will explore my revolutionary approach to quitting alcohol. That breaks. All the rules, amazing stories from women who are throwing a better party because of it and how you can stop drinking and start living.
The show is not a substitute for rehabilitate medical treatment or advice of please talk to a health professional. If your alcohol consumption is in risk to your mental, physical health now on with the show.
Welcome back. My beautiful listeners. This is, we are moving in to a new version of the show of stop drinking and start living. We're starting to look more at embodied living and what it means to really empower yourself through getting to know who you are in a really physical human sense. So we're not running from.
What we consider quote, unquote, pain of emotion and we're diving into sensations. And then we're finding fun, new ways to experience that in a real way. That creates. Real pleasure in our lives. So much of the time we think that alcohol is this fun, joyful, loosey goosey, fancy free freedom experience. When really at the end of the day, it's just taking all of that away and masking.
Who we truly are. And I couldn't be more humbled and honored to be showcasing this interview today with the beautiful Laura Aszman of beauty and movement. Laura is a holistic hairstylist and a hula hoop dance instructor. And she changed my life when I stepped inside of the hoop. And you'll hear all about it.
A world of possibility opened up for me where I was on a mission to prove to myself that I, the inkling that I knew that I could have a more fun, joyful life without the consequences of pain and shame and guilt on the other side of alcohol and the hula hoop. Was that a expression of that? For me. Um, and I'm, we're going to share that with you today and share with you how you can take live online Hulu classes with Laura, from anywhere in the world.
We'll be sharing a link that you can kind of see a little bit what that looks like. I've done both live, um, in person and virtual, and they're just both amazing. She has just. Such a beautiful spirit and one of my dreams come true. I knew before I even met Laura, cause I had been looking for hula hoop for a long time.
And it wasn't until I stepped into my power and decided to claim my year of yes. And just start saying yes to more things that weren't involving, um, where I could really start to prove to myself the life that I wanted to live. Um, I knew before I even met her that we would be friends and that I would just love her.
And so I'm thrilled to announce that we have finally teamed up and we're going to be, um, offering a live socially distance workshop together in the Portland, Oregon area. So if you live around, let us know, we would love to have you. It'll be at Mount Tabor park. Um, August 23rd, I'll be sending all of the info out, um, in my newsletter, but it will also be in the show notes, but yes, you can sign up for classes with Maura, from anywhere in the world.
And she's got links to get the hula hoop sent directly to your house. Um, I would highly highly recommend it. Eight weeks, one hour a week. There's a sense of community that's really cultivated there because of it's live. Um, you can get the replays, um, and just spending time with Laura and in your body in the hoop is so playful, such a feminine expression.
And I couldn't couldn't recommend it more. Um, if you're starting to, I'm starting to move through. Your understanding of your relationship with alcohol and not only that, but how you want to show up for you the rest of your life. And. Last week. I talked about one of the pillars there's of change and truth that I work with one on one with my coaching clients.
So I meet with clients once a week and we start to really explore their thoughts around their life, their limiting thoughts that are just simply based on our own experience. And so another pillar of change in truth that I work with is that thoughts are what create our feelings. And influence our behaviors.
And this is just a universal truth. Our thoughts literally trigger chemical responses in our body positive and negative ones. They are our subjective interpretation of the world based on our experiences up unto that point. So we think that they're truth. We think they're facts and we read them like facts, but they're just our interpretation of the world.
So with that comes empowerment and instead of fighting against, so you can be like, wow. Oh yeah, I don't actually have to believe that anymore. And so a lot of times they're limited. They're not always facts. They are subject to be wrong and limited much of the time to create your belief about the world around you.
We must really. Look into what our current beliefs are to shape new beliefs. They run on a repeat 90% of the time, same every single day, but they are the tool to me manifest our hearts desire. So our mind, our brain is like the computer to live into that divine expression of who we are innately. And Laura and I talk all about this and we're like in tears in the interview.
It's awesome. So, This is happening subconsciously all day, every day. And the magic about coaching is that I get to hear you talk so that I can call out the limiting thoughts that you aren't seeing as subjective. Right? You're seeing them as a truth. And then we can start to deconstruct how they're creating the emotions in your body.
And then in turn the behaviors that you're taking, so we can start to pivot from the present. So when you start to feel different sensations, you slow down and you can start to watch and tune into that witness place. And it's just such an empowering, magical process. Right? If you're in the place of allowing, if you really want to create real change in your life so that you can have more joy so that you can embrace your humanness and embody your power as a divine expression of this beautiful life, enjoy the show.
Sign up for a class with Laura and I'll talk to you soon. Welcome back. My beautiful listeners. Thank you so much for being here on another episode of stop drinking and start living. We have another amazing, beautiful embodied goddess starting off our second season of the show of really creating the framework for more embodied living.
So I wanted to welcome to the show, the wonderful Laura Aszman. Laura, thank you so much for being here. Hello Mary. Thank you. Thank you so much for having me on your show. It is an absolute honor. Yes, I am just thrilled. And I would love to start out by having you tell the listeners about all the beautiful work that you are currently doing in the world today.
Yeah, absolutely. I, well I guess first and foremost, I am, um, well, I've been a hairstylist for over 20 years. from there, it was really fascinating because I met the hula hoop in 2010 when my little niece asked me to come outside and play with her. And because I'm the cool aunt and I need to always maintain that status.
I was like, Charlotte's do this. Um, and it's just incredible the way that it has transformed my life into being a hoop dance teacher as well. So it was pretty, um, it was a path that I didn't even realize I was going to be going down because as, um, as a child, I could never hula hoop and dancing always made me feel really awkward in my body.
And so it's, uh, yeah, I still sometimes have to pinch myself to be like, is this right? Really what I do for a living. Um, but yeah, but it's been wonderful. It's just been, um, Yeah, it's just been such a great tool in my life. Um, and is now actually becoming more of, almost more of what I do instead of being a hairstylist.
So, um, yeah. Then let's see, it's been about five years ago, five years ago, I moved to Portland in Oregon from Wisconsin. And a lot of shifting has happened in my life since then, just with, um, what it is that I'm offering to the world and to the community, you know, and to myself as well. Um, so I'm really grateful that I've taken.
That I took that leap of faith. Portland, just kind of, I got on the guy on the road and took a road trip for six weeks across the entire United States. And, uh, I ended up in Portland. I knew I was going to end up in Portland eventually, but kind of sold all my things. You know, I was 34 years old at the time.
And so I left a career in my home and I'm really happy that. Portland has opened up its arms to me and is wrapping me up in love and support. I'm really glad that I decided to take that leap of faith. Yeah, and now you're wrapping it up in.
That's awesome. I love that. So Laura is an you, the listeners have probably heard me talking a little bit about my exploration with the hoop. So Laura is my instructor, hula hoop instructor. Um, and it was really a pivotal moment in my life and my transition. For really fully committing, not only just to changing my relationship with alcohol, but to next leveling my life and just really opening up to who I am as a woman uniquely.
And so it kind of sounds like your ability to say yes. To yourself, you just yes. To possibility to, yes. What was on the other side of the unknown is really how you, how you got to this place. So can you just talk a little bit about why you continue to say yes to the hula hoop after that first time with your knees?
Yeah, absolutely. Well, I think first and foremost, you know, prior to that, I was doing a lot of traditional exercise just to stay healthy. I was running, even though I didn't like it. And, um, you know, just doing random, random, other things to keep myself feeling good. Um, And when I was hooping with her, I was just laughing so hard.
It brought me so much joy. And so the next morning I woke up and my abs were sore. And I thought, my gosh, it was in my, you know, my abs sore because I was laughing so hard or my answer because of the hoop. And I think it was a little bit of both, um, Yeah. So from there, it's just kind of, um, gosh, I was that year.
I was a hula hooping, hula girl for Halloween. And, you know, I went on YouTube because I thought, Oh, I need to perform with my costume. And so I searched hula hoop tricks on YouTube and then this like, YouTube explosion of hoop dance came up a world that I didn't even know now existed. Um, and so it really, it's really kind of funny, like how my journey into the hoop came from first, my niece, and then a Halloween costume.
Hmm. Um, and then has just transpired. It's just really fascinating because it's like, I started actually, my business was called, um, hoop to be fit in Wisconsin here. It was almost like, yeah, it started off as this fitness thing for me. And. It really became so much more of an embodied practice and a movement meditation for me, the more like the further and further I dove into it.
And it was really, it was just such a unexpected gift, um, to, uh, really even build like the confidence that I had then through the hoop. And, um, it's just been, it's been such a fascinating tool too. I keep my life in flow as well. You know, it's like the very nature of the hoop is a circle. So, um, in order to move with it, we have to be fluid.
You know, we have to go with that flow. We have to follow that flow. Um, yeah. So it's really fascinating. Like how. How it kind of started off as this fitness and then now has become more of a movement meditation and more of an embodied practice, you know, to really help my students get into their bodies.
Um, and then when I moved to Portland, Oregon, I knew that I wanted to rebrand and rename my business and, um, In Wisconsin. I was doing hair for a salon. And when I went, yeah, when I moved to Portland, I was working for myself then. And so just to encompass, um, both modalities with holistic hair care, I've also redesigned how I've done hair.
Um, And take it now more from a holistic standpoint and really, um, really take a look at the individual and like, tell me all about, you know, yourself and you know, how it is that you want to show up in the world and, you know, um, looking at it from that perspective instead. And so getting back to what I was saying about a rebranding.
Uh, I would never forget. I was sitting with one of, one of my friends while I was visiting Wisconsin. And there was something with beauty and there was something with movement. And then that's essentially how beauty in movement was born because I thought, Oh yeah, you know, we have like the beauty in the movement of the hair, but we also have that beauty in, in movement and actually the spiral and the circling and just the way we move our bodies and, um, You know, it can kind of flow.
So. That's a little side note about, I love all of that so much. Laura is also, my hairstylist touched my hair in a while and it needs it because locked down. Um, but no, one's been really seeing me and I just, I, a couple things came up for me when you were saying all of that, which is the first thing is.
The committing to the movement practice and the parallel that I have with this, although the hoop changed my life in a different way, but is my practice of yoga and how, for so many, especially in our Western world, you know, you find yoga at a gym or wherever, and I'm sure there's Hulu, Dan's popping up in different places too.
Um, but you know, it just, it does become at first it's kind of this, um, You know, just physical practice and the more you commit to something, because you just follow your intuition because of joy. Right. Because I know that's one of your big things. Like it brings you joy and the, those unexpected gifts.
And you, you know, they show you move through the discomfort of dropping the hoop. You move through the discomfort of stretching the muscle and you see the other side of it, you know, you're, I'm every class I went with you, I was never like, Oh, I wish I didn't go to that class. You know, it's like always feel better.
So you keep showing up. But it's those gifts that of unraveling the layers of the self that I think in embodiment practice. Really does. And that's kind of where I see the difference. Cause like now with yoga, I just am like, it just keeps getting better. I am, it's been 20 years, Laura and I am still floored by how transformative it is every single day for me.
And then adding the hoop on top of that has just become such another. Or so what would you say in your view is the difference really? Between just exercising and then embodiment. For me, you know, I go deeper into myself. Um, you know, it's like when I was just exercising, I felt like I had the goal in mind of, um, fitness of health, you know, even just with like body image, you know, it's like, okay, I have to look this certain way.
Um, and you know, once I really released that, And could pick up more, you know, use the hoop is more of an embodiment tool. It was really fascinating and beautiful to see how my body responded differently and how much more connected I felt to my movements, to my own soul, um, to those around me, even, you know, it's like, as I started teaching.
It's incredible to see transformation and people, even just in a 60 minute class, you know, it's like if they, when they used to come to the studio and now that I'm teaching online, Um, you know, to come in and start at one place and then to really get transformed into this other, like, deeper, more spiritual place.
Um, and I'm sure that you can like with yoga too, and with your practice, kinda, as you were saying where it's just like, it just keeps. You know, getting better and better and better, and the deeper you go into it. Um, so for me, yeah, that's, that's a lot of it where it's felt more like my spiritual practice and it's like, it brings me this sense of deep, deep connection, you know, oftentimes.
When I'm stressed when I'm angry, when you know something's happening, like even before we did this interview, I was like, Oh, I'm going to put on some music and I'm going to dance a little bit and then hoop it out a little as well. You know, I've always said like, Oh man, I gotta go hoop it out. I am like stressin.
Um, Yeah. So it's just, it's such a beautiful tool, um, to connect, to connect me to myself, um, on a it's like next level besides, you know, going from fitness to, um, to the way that I use it now. Yeah. Yeah. And it's no longer just something to kind of check off your, to do lists, you know? Yeah. Yeah. It's a lifestyle it's practice.
Yeah. It's a real life. Yeah. That's so beautiful. And I know I love, I mean, it really is magic. You step inside this hula hoop and for people don't know, can you, do you have a description of what you tell people? The difference between just, you know, people just think like swirling around your waist, but different than the practice that you teach, um, as far as hoop dancing.
Yeah, sure. Yeah. I know. It's really interesting. A lot of times people will say. You're a hula hoop teacher, like what's hot, you know? And I'm like, yeah, actually, and then they just think they actually just think that it's for your waist, you know? Um, but I try to explain to them that it really is so much more it's full body.
It's a meditation, it's a joyful, it's a playful practice. Um, you know, I explain that. You know, yes, we, you know, we often begin on our waste, you know, in getting the feet, the sensation and kind of getting that part of it down, you know, but then from there really, I always invite my students to close your eyes and drop in and like really tune into the sensation of how the hoop feels going around your body.
Um, and I think that that really helps people, um, Yeah, just kind of drop into themselves a bit more. Um, but what you were saying too, Well, I just lost my train of thought for a sec here. Oh my gosh, Mary. No, we were just talking about the hoop dam. Oh, thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Yeah, that's exactly where I was like, Oh, and then so with the dance part of it too, you know, I try to explain to people it's like, sure.
You know, it's like, we may start here on the waist, but it's really about how is it that my body is moving through time and space while having this. Hoop on my body. I try to get them to like, watch a video. Like I'll send them to my Instagram or, you know, I'll send them somewhere else. Cause it's really, it's a, it's a bit difficult to put into words sometimes, you know, to say I'm a hoop dancer and then be like, so I'm fusing dancing with the hula hoop.
Um, yeah. And it's like, even when people have seen me. Um, in public, you know, if I, lot of times I'll go to like a basketball court and just, you know, bring a speaker and play around and somebody had stopped me the other day. Like, what is this that you're doing? It was really, it was so beautiful. We had this gorgeous conversation and connected in and.
Yeah, but so even when you actually see it and people see that there's this hoop, but it's not this like, Oh, it's a hula hoop. Like, you know, when whammo came out in 19. 54 or whatever, you know, or with native American hoop dancing too. It's I mean, it's really stemming from that place. Yeah. And we'll definitely put a link for a video of beautiful Laura, cause she's just so fluid and elegant and Laura's style is actually quite different from all of them.
There's a lot of hula hoop. Kind of trick dancing where it's, um, you know, doing, I mean, Laura teaches that as well, but from what the reason I love working with you so much is because. The way I kind of describe it is that the hula hoop kind of becomes your dance partner. You can think about, you know, doing like a two step or like twirl, you know, getting twirled around or just this really fluid movement with, with another person.
But that, that person is a hula hoop and yourself.
I tell that to my students all the time. I'm like, this is your favorite. Like, this might not be your favorite dance partner, but this is your dance partner, you know, embrace it and get to know one another. It's so amazing. I can't wait for everyone to check it out because he is just so awesome. And so kind of, well, actually one thing, just because we were talking about who, but I do want to go kind of go backwards a little bit, but it really.
Sounds. I mean, if you really link all the pieces together, it all really stems from playfulness and joy. Like you were playing with your knees, you were having a great time. And then you were seeing the benefits of it in your life and seeing how now it added this layer. Outside of just exercise. And so what does that mean to you?
Joy and how is that part of your message? I mean, what do you mean? What does that mean for you for your life? Gosh to bring joy into my life every day is definitely goal. And the hoop has certainly helped with that. It's interesting. I'm visiting my family right now, back in Wisconsin, and I'm looking straight ahead.
My mother has these photographs of all of us in the family, and there's a photo of me that I sent out as a Christmas card one year. And it's me. Hula hooping playing the ukulele. Horrible. I need that bitch. And so it's like, as you're talking about joy, I'm just looking at this photograph. And by the way, like, I can't really play that ukulele, but I attempted for a short amount of time.
And so I'm just looking at this and it's like, yes, that photo right there is the essence of joy. And you know, it's like, if we can just, I try. To just choose joy, right. Through even as much as I, as much as I can. I just try to find that joy and to still maintain that joy, even in times of distress, you know, I think that it's important to feel all your feels and fully process, um, all those things that may or may not be coming up, but, um, you know, joy truly is for me.
A lifestyle. And to give that, you know, if I can bring a little bit more joy to anybody's day, and that could be the bank teller or the person at the grocery store, and that's just, you know, even just to engage and smile, you know, to walk past somebody and smile and, you know, just be human. Right. Um, yeah.
For me. And I think too is like the act. Do you see that this is missing from life? You know, the act of play in this playfulness that the embodiment practice can bring, even to, like you said, these deep emotion to be this, this play with our emotion. I mean, is that how you see it? You know, Really interesting.
Cause it's like, when it's almost like people won't take me seriously. Sometimes when I tell them I'm a hoop dance teacher, or even if they, if they it's like, I'm almost afraid to be too joyful. Because people won't take you seriously. Or if they're like, well, Oh no, no, no, I couldn't hula hoop like that.
Like that all looks silly. Like I think that there's so many people are afraid of looking silly. Um, you know, or maybe, yeah, just kind of scared to take that chance. Um, and what's really important for me and in what I do and what I offer is to let people show up with their authenticity. And however it is that they want to show up.
And if it's a, you know, if they're feeling a lot of joy that day, wonderful. If they're feeling a lot of sorrow that day, great, like bring it like it's okay. Like everything is welcome here. Um, you know, and if we can, we can all be together. You know, to hold one another in that space. I think, you know, the humanness, what I've read, what I have received from teaching, um, hoop dancing, and just from my own practice and connecting with people like that person in the park.
Okay. I brought her some joy and I was experiencing joy as well. Um, I feel like, did I, gosh, did I like derail from your question a little bit? I like get on this joy train and she's like, Whoa, she doesn't enjoy training. No, that's exactly what I asked. And I, I think that, you know, and you know, this is a podcast about pitching, helping people change their relationship with alcohol, but through not through demonizing alcohol, not through taking down the alcohol industry, but looking on the other side of it, What am I missing?
Because alcohol is at the center stage of my life and you could also insert whatever you want, you know? And so, you know, when briefly, I'll just say personally for me, um, I had just started saying yes to more things to experience. What could I enjoy that wasn't alcoholic? I was determined to prove. Cause I knew life was awesome, but I had just gotten in such a habit of only seeking this false pleasure through alcohol, you know, because it, I mean, it's not, we're not creating it really in, through our bodies.
It's a chemical that we put in that lowers our inhibitions and makes us feel loosey goosey. Right. And so we're, we're really fully experiencing our emotions. We're never fully processing. And so when I stepped inside of the hula hoop and I've always been in doing movies, there was something about the spiraling of it in the.
Really the, the, the feminine expression of what it is. And of course men can hoop dance. We know male dancers that are amazing. Um, but there was that divine, feminine expression that like spun me in the other direction. And just like, from the roots up, I felt like I blossomed. Like a flower, like there was like this, like my feminine essence was like crumbled into a little, not because of all of the alcohol at all, the emotional suppression that I did.
And then as I was hooping, it like spun out and I just was like, this is what I've been missing is this is stepping into my role as the woman and the feminine essence. Um, And yeah, I don't know. I don't know if you can talk, speak to that at all. Um, how that has shown up in your own life, where you see it showing up in your classes.
Definitely. Yeah, that's gorgeous by the way, Mary, thank you for sharing that. Um, and that's what it's all about, you know, just listening to your story with that. Um, you know, it's like as in order to keep the hoop on our waste and granted we move it, you know, and down and all around our body on and off.
But if you're just in a, you know, if you're keeping it up on your waist or on your hips, In order to keep it up. And you do, you have to have this like spiral pulse coming from your pelvic bowl. Right. And that's where, I mean, that is where creation. Lives, right. It's like, this is where actual, like birth creation lives and metaphorically speaking, like when we want to create, and that might even be, you know, creating a new life for yourself, for instance, I mean, with your relationship with alcohol, um, and how you were showing up in your body, it's like so much as stirring up inside of your being just by practicing this.
You know, and showing up for yourself, um, and I've seen it, you know, I've seen, um, people have shared with me in my classes, just, um, you know, some of the relationships that they've had with, with their self and their female body also, you know, finding that empowerment. And I think a lot of it does certainly it has to do with, you know, moving through our pelvis.
Um, Yeah, it's given me so much confidence as well. Like I was saying earlier, it's, you know, in order to keep the hoop up, a lot of times on your waist, you have to, you have to remain tall and lifted and looking up at the world around you. And so it's like, wow, you'd better look out world because not only are you looking up, but you're also then moving from your center from your creative center, um, And it's very powerful.
It's just, Oh my gosh. It's so good. And I think that the hoop, it provides this sacred container for, because I think as women, oftentimes, you know, it's like, I we've been told all of our lives like up, don't be too sexy. Don't move your hips. Don't do that. I'm like, Oh no, no, no, no. We are going to just blow that old story away and we're going to move through this.
Um, and so the hoop really provides the safe. The safe space, the safe container, uh, for people who come to my class, um, and who hoop dance to do. So it's just incredible. The shifts that can happen. And, um, with, with the practice, it's blows my mind. It really does. It continually blows my mind. My gosh, I've been teaching since 2012.
Yeah. You know, I've seen, I've witnessed it and myself and with others, you know, yourself included, it's just. So beautiful. It's so big. I was getting chills thinking about it and because it's is so powerful or you described it so perfectly that chest up I'm here, heart open, moving my hips and a specific Errol is the symbol of life.
You know, it's not just it's like this. And then the hoop is that container, that circle of. There's no end. Right. We move from beginning and we transitioned and then, but then we come back and meet it at a different place. And that's. Really what the work that we're doing here is all about. It creates a new framework for how we show up to life.
So from a new perspective with each, each milestone that you meet, like there's never any final destination, but we come at it from a new pivot point, a new perspective. Then this, I have to say that the hoop being the safe container really does create like on a therapeutic level, this, yeah, this embrace because.
You know, I was learning the skills and then I had danced when I was little and I've always loved to dance. And then with your instruction in your, um, the way that you teach have more flow rather than just lots of tricks. Although we learned skills that flow opened up and then I remembered. The first times, like I started dancing, sober, really conscious dance and just crying and like taking the hoop away.
And I, I mean, I just felt like I can't home. I was like, where, why, why did I wait so long to get here? Um, yeah. And, you know, just thank you. Thank you for being present and guide being part of my guiding light to get there. Yeah, it was it's it really, the dance piece has just been such a pivotal part. And that's why I really, um, want my listeners to know that the embodiment through nature through themselves, through the earth through movement, I mean, movement is a universal language, right?
Like. Hmm, and this is how we can connect with each other and ourselves. And it's just, it's so beautiful. And I just, I wanted to ask you a little bit about your own healing journey, because I, I do know that you face some adversity in the past and how, if you want to talk a little bit about that and, or just like how using embodiment using dance has helped you move through through fear, through transition.
Yeah, absolutely. Um, by the way, you gave me chills and brought tears my eyes when you were just sharing. So thank you, um, for your open heart and vulnerability. Um, yeah. Gosh. So when I was so about, let's see, six days before my 25th birthday, I was, um, I started a cancer journey. And so I was in the ER and they told me, Laura, you could, you may have cancer.
And up until that point, you know, it was very healthy and whatnot. Um, you know, and at that point, I'm trying to remember, I did not meet the hoop at that point. Um, so hooping really came after, after that experience. Um, and I'm just so glad that. That I found it eventually, um, had I had the hoop, my gosh, when I was going through treatment and everything else, um, it would have been incredible, but I think that even post cancer, you know, I've been healthy and have, everything's been in the clear now since, you know, 2006, um, But even now I still carry so much trauma and so much like this fear of, um, this really, honestly, this fear of dying young, you know, it's like when you're diagnosed at such a young age and don't really have the tools to process what's happening to you at that moment.
Um, you know, I have, I used the hoop to move me through. Those fears to move. You know, it's like when those moments of anxiety and panic come up in my body, um, you know, to know that even without the hoop, you know, to know I can ground down and I, I have my body. And to know that I'm safe, um, to have these tools has been so beneficial for me.
Um, yeah, just to be able to reach for that. To be able to reach for that. Um, through those harder times, you know, like, as I had said before, it's like, Oh, I need to go hoop it out. And that, I mean, yeah. That's like when I'm feeling frustrated and stuff too, but definitely, um, you know, when really, you know, in deeper, greater things have come up in my life.
Um, it's nice to know that. I have my body. Yeah. It's like, Nope, my body's healthy. It's so wise I can get through this. I'm going to move through this. And I think that a lot of times, um, you know, I will stop everything kind of stops and it's just like, wait, what's going on here? I know better than this. I need to move a little, you know, even if that means just gentle movements back and forth here and there.
Um, You know, to bring myself back in, it's just a conscious dance. I know you spoke of conscious stance before, too, and that has just helped me, so, so deeply as well, um, to connect in to my sense, my sense of self, um, yeah, I think it's really a deeper sense of self trust that you've been able to, to create and cultivate.
Yeah, practice. Yeah. A hundred percent, a hundred percent, you know, it's just that reminder. Um, yeah, it's just that reminder that our bodies are so wise and it is, it's such a, it is such a self-trust it's like the perfect way to describe it. Yeah. Yeah. That's something I've actually, um, I work with my clients on, or kind of earlier on is.
You know, not so much looking at the thoughts. I mean, we do look at the beliefs around alcohol that are limiting, but is getting into the body because alcohol sets such a disassociated that we really lose track of this. What are the sensations in my body? And being able to say, what is my body telling me in this moment?
Not the trigger or the craving, but what is that? My body telling me that deep, intuitive wisdom, um, if you can get into a more relaxed state and then you can just listen in, and usually the body's telling you, you know, it's not go buffer and eat a bunch of ice cream. The body's saying, okay, Care ease, you know, forever, you know?
Um, and so without judgment, I mean, you know, there's no judgment for how we show up in life sometimes, but it really is that, that piece. And, um, yeah, I mean, any really any movement practice I do believe with. The intention and with how you approach it, you know, it's not what you do, but how you do it can become that place where you can find that deeper sense of self trust inside him.
Because like, what else do we have? I mean, we walk around in this container, this vehicle, right? We could be left with it, nothing, but if you have that deep, innate trust and wisdom inside, um, Yeah, I think that, I think that that's super useful. Um, can you talk a little bit about how not only super useful? I mean, it's just the one way of life.
They're all about super useful. It's the way that I do everything. I'm a little bit about how you personally have shown up differently or used like this awareness. This trust is practice, um, to transition, um, In different habits in your own life. I mean, we talked a little bit about on the show or earlier about your relationship with alcohol personally and how that's shifted if you wanted to talk about that a little bit.
Yeah, definitely. I, um, see at, gosh, my relationship with alcohol, you know, being that I'm from Wisconsin, um, it's very strong drinking culture here and I grew up drinking. Pretty young. Um, you know, and I'll quite a lot as well. And again, this is like, you know, pre, hula hoop days and pre embodiment and all the things.
Um, it's been really fascinating to see, um, you know, once I moved out to Portland, you know, cause I was still, I mean, I was definitely still drinking probably quite a bit. Maybe slowing down a little bit in my later 30 or my early thirties. Um, but when I moved to Portland, when I was 34, I really shifted so much in my life.
And, you know, conscious stance was more present. I was really diving into the hula hoop, like 2014, cause I moved out in 2015 and in 2014 I was just like really getting, um, more connected to. Meditation and, you know, hooping as a movement meditation and like really so much started shifting. And I just felt like, gosh, I feel so much better when I'm not drinking.
Like, I just feel so much clearer. Um, and it just, it was really interesting to see how my relationship with alcohol changed when I moved to Portland. Um, because you know, I still. I still drink from time to time, um, socially here and there. Like if it's, again, it's like one of those things, like you're saying you're, I'm, you know, I tap in to like, what feels good?
Oh, you know what a beer sounds like. I mean, that sounds good. And it's just going to be like one beer, you know, on a hot summer day or something, or, um, but it's incredible to see, like once I started really becoming more embodied. And connecting in with these practices that brought me deeper into myself, the drinking.
It was just like, well, I don't need that anymore. Like, I didn't desire it as much. Um, I just didn't really have much interest. Like I didn't crave it anymore. Um, yeah, it was just, it was a really easy thing to do less. So once I felt. Really secure and yeah, myself, you know, it was like, I can't, I kind of came, I've been in this process of coming home.
Um, and just even like through the move to Portland and everything too, it's like, I kind of derailed a little bit too. And like the process of coming back home to myself, um, has been really. Oh, refreshing. In other words, I'm just like, Oh gosh, it's so refreshing. How much less? Yes. So much less stressful, you know?
It's yeah, I don't, it's like, for me, as far as like, That high feeling that you'd get from alcohol, right? Like, like, Oh, I'm kind of loosey goosey. I'm this I'm that or whatever. Well, that's what dance and hooping does for me. So I'm like, well, you know, I don't really crave that anymore because I'm getting it in this cleaner, like the cleanest, purest state of it.
Um, just through my movement. Yeah. There's no negative side effects. Exactly. And, Oh my gosh. Let me tell you like every, like, gosh, just, it was probably like a month ago. Um, I was just some girlfriends. We were like having a painting party and of course they're both from Wisconsin, but they live in Portland now with me and sure enough, these girls, they just like bottles of wine and, you know, Rosa all day.
And I was just like, Oh God, here we go. And I didn't drink nearly as much as they did. I don't think, you know, but the next day I was like, my God, why did I do that? You know, like what on earth? And this kind of thing, like, doesn't happen very often to me anymore. Like you were, when I come home, my PA, you know, my family is always like, Oh, Laura, she can really, she can really drink.
I'm like, Hey guys, I don't really drink that much anymore. You know? And I'm really happy about it. So. Yeah, I was kind of curious what the, you know, the sensations of the alcohol, um, how that settles with you now just being really embody. Um, and then having that experience of alcohol, does it feel disassociating to you?
Yeah, I would say, you know, you know, if I am just casually drinking, like if I just have, you know, a glass of wine, I'm, you know, I don't really, really feel any effects from alcohol. I feel like the way that my body metabolizes it and process, you know, I have a pretty high tolerance. And so, you know, to have one drink really doesn't affect me in any major way.
But, um, you know, when I was. With my girlfriends, you know, having our painting party, it certainly did. It was, it's really interesting, like kind of how it creeps up on you and then you feel like, well, I'm totally fine. No, I feel, I feel okay. And then like, Oh, but wait, am I, so it does, it has like this disassociating, I feel less embodied.
I feel way less connected to spirit. I'm just kind of. I'm just kind of floating through life. Um, And I don't want to just float through life. I've got too much great work to do on this life. I don't just want to be like, okay. Lottie LA. Yeah. Yeah. That's a great way to explain it. Kind of like floating.
Yeah. And just, and I've heard so many people feel this, describe it like that, like that spirit, their spirit kind of checks out and then it's like, Other spirit, you know, that kind of comes in and takes over and it's like, wait, where, where did I go? Um, but like also not to mention the fact that I'm sure, and this is something else I work with my clients on and was a huge for me, is being inspired by having something else that was ended up being more important to you.
So if you have. Class and you want, you need to be present for your students. Cause you're, cause this is like your passion or if you're going to, you know, study with your teacher or having conscious dance in the morning, it's like, you're making decisions based around that. I would think. Oh yeah. Big time.
Yeah. Like how you hear of yourself. Gosh, it's like, I think about my younger days and even, you know, in my early thirties when I was still drinking a lot, you know, relatively, you know, A lot, I guess some would say. And, um, you know, I could just, I was still showing up to all those things, like to work and to, you know, class or whatever.
And it's just, I just think about, gosh, I'm so much more yummy now, you know, like when, when you're not coming from a place of, Oh, I was drinking last night, that presence that comes through is just, I mean, it's just so. It's just not worth it to, to not have that, you know, to like, feel so grounded and to feel like I'm really coming from this, um, this strong sense, right.
This strong place. I don't wanna, I don't want to show up for my students. Like I don't want to show up for my students in a weak, weak state of mind or, um, you know, not to be able to give them my all. It's too important to me. You know, what I do is way too important to me. Yeah. Sense of joy that comes through from you.
And that was something I really noticed about you early on, was your ability to kind of discern your energy. Um, you know, being able to say yes and no to things, if it wasn't. Really in line with your, you know, what you knew you needed for yourself. Um, and I think that that's really inspiring and I think that creates and, um, you know, and that's something like making decisions from decisions, from a place of embodiment.
Um, there's nothing more empowering than that. I don't think so. That's awesome. Agreed. Thank you for saying that. I love like the yummy, like just you're so much yummier and that's how I feel too. Like everything just feels so much better. I mean, just, um, and I wanted to ask you, because I know you're transitioning into another phase of your life in a relationship, and I know that this relationship is one where, um, the gentlemen.
Doesn't drink. He is, um, I don't know if he says he's in recovery or what, but I know he's an alcohol free person, but I know you guys also met on the dance floor. And so I'm just kinda curious, you know, briefly how this is showing up in your life, different from other relationships and being able to show up in a more intimate way with, you know, with boundaries and acceptance, um, in all, in all ways.
I would just love for you to just speak a little bit about that. Yeah, definitely. Um, well, my gosh, this is been by far the most transformative, um, relationship of my life. Um, and it's really interesting Mary, because, you know, it's like all of a sudden I was thinking about my, the partner that I had for a significant amount of time back in Wisconsin.
Uh, who drank every day. Um, you know, he smoked marijuana every day. Um, and the difference between my current partner in him and how our relationship is, and gosh, I don't want to go, I don't ever want to go back to that place of being with somebody who is dependent on any kind of substance. Um, and it's been.
You know, I think, you know, with my partner now, um, yeah, we did meet on the dance floor and one of the first things that he said to me, I mean, before I even knew his name, I think, no, maybe I did know his name right before he said this, but he told me like that he was sober and, you know, he was very proud of it.
He's been sober for nine years and I'm so proud of him. Um, you know, from all substance and. You know, for me coming from a place of, well, on the occasion, I'll have maybe a glass of wine or beer. I was a little nervous too, almost like to admit those things at first to him. Um, but. You know, through the process of us, it was, it's been really interesting because unfortunately he does not live here.
He's in Melbourne Australia and it's like, gosh, this is so challenging right now being away and not having any idea when I'm going to see him again, because of, um, you know, COVID but anyway, um, and not to digress there. So it's been really interesting to see, like when we have lived together, When I was in Melbourne was when he was here in Portland.
Um, how, you know, him not drinking, really? It encourages me to kind of take a look at my own relationship with alcohol. Um, you know, and he definitely is like, he's, he's like, yeah, if you want to have a drink or whatever, you know, it's fine. It's kind of funny because I don't eat meat and he does eat meat.
So we've talked about like, well, if we can have alcohol in the house and I don't want you to cook, oops, I like honey. If I'm going to have a drink, go ahead. And you know, you're going to have chicken, like, cause he's like, I'm not going to kiss you after you have had a sip of alcohol or whatever. And I was like, great, I'm not going to kiss you if you've had meat.
that's so funny. Um, But nonetheless like it's, um, yeah, it's brought this different kind of awareness to my alcohol consumption when we're together. And even like, I was like with that painting party, I talked about earlier, um, you know, it was like when I had those drinks, I was like, Oh gosh, I don't want to tell him that, you know, I had all these drinks, but he knew.
Cause like we were sending him videos of us dancing and singing and you know, painting. But, um, but yeah, it's, I'm great. I'm so grateful for his, um, his sobriety and the strength that has come from that in him. Um, and. Yeah, the inspiration that he gives me because of it. Um, and just really that, that self reflection.
So I can, I can really take a step back and, um, consider, consider what my choices are, you know, and I'm really, I'm glad that I don't drink that much. You know, it's not really an active part of my. No, sometimes I'll go like a good month, at least without a drink or more human. Um, and yeah. It's yeah, I'm just grateful.
That's all. I, I guess that's what I can really speak on and there's, I'm just so grateful to have his sobriety and like the inspiration that he gives me. Um, and I'm glad that I met him at this time in my life. And when I was in Wisconsin, I'll tell you that. Nope, he wouldn't have, I mean, we would never would have worked, you know, so, yeah.
I'm just like, just one more question about that. Would you say, I mean, for me, most of my relationships. Kind of had started around like having a drink with someone. Um, so I can only, and I don't know about this for you, but like I can only meet, imagine that like starting a relationship on the dance floor, like the intimacy level, um, being so much more deeper and it's like exposed kind of quicker and more real and alive.
So true. Oh my gosh. Mary is so true. It's like we both saw each other's souls on the dance floor. You know, it's like so much of like when you're in conscious dance. Cause we were actually in a, uh, five rhythms, sweat your prayers, a workshop class that morning. And in conscious stance for anybody be who's listening that isn't, that doesn't know is, um, you're, you don't speak on the dance floor at all.
You know, so, um, my partner and I had been dancing around in and out of each other's orbit for like 90 minutes without any communication. And so you really see. Somebody and feel their energy. It's such an energetic thing. And again, just, there's so much purity around that. Um, when you are able to meet somebody doing what you love to do, um, you know, and what they love to do and seeing how the two of your worlds can kind of combine and.
Um, come together. Yeah. I'm I too, like, I'm just, yeah. The way I won't get into like our whole love story, but it's just like, Oh my gosh. Unbelievable. I'm so excited for you to go to Melbourne so I can come and visit. Yes. Let's hope. Yeah. Let's hope we get there sooner than later, because. Um, yeah. Being in a long distance relationship that you have no sight of when you're going to see one another is quite challenging.
Well, let's just cast a spell right now that you make it into the arms of your lover very soon. Yeah. Thank you for that. I mean, it is building such a solid foundation in us for sure. Sure. So good. It's going to be just so good. I'm so excited for you. And, um, well, I really, I wanted to end where by you telling everyone how they can come and work with you because.
Laura can, you can work with Laura from anywhere in the world now. And it's amazing. So tell us about what's coming up for you and how all of our listeners can find you and get a hoop and do all of the things. Totally. So my website is a great resource. I'm pretty good at updating it and keeping it. Um, yeah, keeping it fresh.
Um, so that is beauty in movement.com. So I like to enunciate that. It's the word beauty, and then the word in, I N. And then the word movement. Cause sometimes I think that people think that it's beauty and movement and it's not it's beauty in I N movement.com and that's my Instagram handle as well. I have, um, online classes.
I mean, while we're in this pandemic here, um, I'll do it. Definitely be keeping my classes to an online platform. Uh, I'm actually, I'm really excited because I think I'm going to do a movement meditation and the hoops series. Um, I just started updating my website with new classes. And so, um, yeah, that's a great way.
You can also just shoot me an email. Laura, at beauty and movement.com. Um, you know, for a chat I'm doing private lessons, um, online or safely distance, um, In person and workshops and you know, maybe some color, but ratio with you, Mary. Yeah. So that's probably the best way. Yeah. My website and the Instagram.
Oh, and on Facebook too, it's just beauty in movement. So, I mean, honestly, if you just, um, Google it. Yeah. Beauty and movement, hula hoops, I should pop up. We'll put everything in the show notes to end. Um, I would, I want to put, make sure to put a video of you in there. I know that there's. We'll just get, I'll get the video from you that you want me to share.
Do you know when your next series is starting? Yeah. So the week of September 14th, I've decided on. So I'm just in the process, like literally right before I, um, you know, we got on this call, I was updating my website and I decided on the dates. So I haven't sent out my newsletter yet. That's really the best way to know about.
Um, the classes tend to fill up. And so the best way to know no about the class because is to subscribe to my newsletter. And I like to tell people that I only send out announcements for classes. Um, and so I don't, I'm not as awesome. Like I can't just like, I don't have. A lot of emails being sent out every week or anything, but every now and then you'll hear from me and it's me saying, Hey, registration's open, like come home with me.
Um, and I sell the house two. I sell the hoops. Um, you know, and I also have a supplier that I can hook you up with and with a promo code and all the things. If you wanted to get a hoop from them, I just want to imagine that we have that this will be out well before then. So if anyone wants to sign up or connect with you, and so if people aren't local in Portland and they want to, they can get one or they can order one through the supplier that you have yeah.
Through the spinsters. Um, and that link is that's on my website too. So if you go to my website and go to. Um, move your body and then, you know, get a dropdown window to, um, hoops, um, hoop, dance classes, and hoops. And then there's the, um, the link to the spinsters website with a 10% off promo code. Um, Yeah, the people aren't local and I can help recommend hoops and stuff too.
And like send me an email. I'm just happy to help. Like I just want to get as many people. Well, the hoop is possible because it's just changed my life so much and has brought me so much joy, um, and so much, um, connection to myself and. So others, then it's just like, ah, one of my students, the other day, she has sent me a text and she just told me what you do is actually more like therapy.
Like it's this therapeutic, um, experience. Um, and it was just such a beautiful. Compliment so grateful. I couldn't agree. Three more. I mean, the sematic connection between shifting, shifting our lives, right? Shifting from limiting beliefs and limiting patterns, but then using the body to process that is really the way to true transforming transformation and growth.
And, you know, I can't emphasize that enough and that's why know, I, you know, such an advocate and work with. Clients on combining as much, which is we can have both as well. And, um, yeah, I agree. I mean, it changed my life. I don't know, you know, it wasn't one of the things that I said yes to when I was really starting off on this, crossing the threshold into the next level of my life.
And so, um, yeah, I definitely stirred up some competence in me and I just wanted to say one more thing before we say goodbye is that the online classes are live. Um, and so it's a very. Much like a real class. I've done both with Laura and I, I thought that the law, the online class has translated beautifully.
So it's not like you're watching a recording, like it's there, but I know you have that option too, for if people aren't can't make it live or they can have both and they can have all of it. Totally. Yeah, I have online packages and so, yeah, I've bundled them up where you can just get the recordings if, um, you know, you can't come to class and just wanna get the recordings of the class or you can come to the live class.
And it's really important to me. This is why I limit the number of people because. I S I S one of my greatest passions is to build community. And so I want everyone to be heard, you know, I want everyone to be seen. Um, you know, so in opening circle, we still have opening circle, you know, and, uh, we all are able to share one thing, you know, where we can say our name and like share a thing and then move on, you know, pass the mic and the next person.
And, um, it's just. I think that starting from that place is just so important to me. Cause that's how I run my classes. Um, and now that we've transitioned into online the world of online learning, um, I'm finding that a lot of other classes, you know, you just kind of log in and then you're there and you know, you're not really heard and you always have the option to turn your camera off, you know?
So it's like, you know, Feel free to turn the camera and you don't have to share or speak at all. Um, you know, but just come as you are. And that's exactly where you should be. You know, it's just come, come as you are. Come as you are. And that does make all the difference. I think that that's why that the online classes, um, the live online classes, so, well, I mean, your instruction is great.
I think for video recorded video too, but it just, it makes it feel like you are part of a class because it's small and it's intimate and then. You know, there's time to check in and all those things. So I would highly recommend this as saying yes to something new and transitioning your life, seeing what's possible.
On the other side of alcohol, seeing what's possible for you to have fun, to bring more joy and play into your adult life. Like we don't have to consume alcohol. Like we can be childlike without being child ish. You know, I love that. I love that. Mary it's so good. And like, I think that that's kind of the place where a lot of people want to get to with alcohol is this lowered inhibition.
So they can just relax, but there are other. Way more fun, way, more positive ways to get there, but it does. It's just taking the opportunity to show up. But Laura just extended the invitation to show up as you are free of judgment and just fully beautiful as you are and Laura, Oh my gosh. So many thank you's in so many ways for them, so many reasons, but I'm just thrilled that you were here.
This is going to be such an awesome interview for the audience, and I hope you enjoy the rest of your time. It's your family. Thank you so much. Thank you so much, Mary. It has been an absolute pleasure and an honor, I'm just smiling from ear to ear. I hope you can hear it again across the, across the waves.
I'm just, yeah. I'm so grateful for you and the work that you're doing in this world. Oh, such a swatch, such a sweet honor to be in your presence. Always. Thank you. Lovable to hopeful future collaborations. Yes, absolutely. Let's do it. Thank you everyone for listening. Have a great day. The process of unraveling your story outside of the confines of alcohol is truly a sacred and beautiful journey of the South rediscover, who you are and a whole new world.
Again. Stop by my website, Mary Wagstaff, coach.com to get instant access to the on demand workshop of my revolutionary five shifts approach. And while you're there, you can sign up for a one on one consultation where we will create together your life intention. This is the framework for which all of your decisions around alcohol are made from your truest and highest self.
In addition to working remotely, worldwide, I hope. Private one-on-one healing retreats at my sanctuary in Mount hood, Oregon. I can't wait to connect.