Rise & Shine Interview: Michelle Marie McGrath

I’m so excited that today Michelle Marie McGrath is sharing her thoughts on perseverance with us.  I was introduced to Michelle indirectly through Julie Parker.  Thanks for connecting us Julie! Michelle inspires me with her words and I had to ask her to be part of the “Profiles of Perseverance” interview series. If you haven’t checked out her work – here is your introduction to her. Thanks, Michelle, for encouraging everyone to love themselves and for taking part in this interview.  You rock!

Michelle Marie McGrath is the creator of Sacred Self’s Self-love range of Alchemical oils and cards. She’s the co-author of “Love and Oneness” in the bestselling Adventures In Manifesting series. She’s also the creator of "100% self-love ecourse” and author of "7 ways to love yourself" ebook. Michelle is passionate about falling in love with ALL parts of herself, and encouraging others to do the same.

From the UK, Michelle lives in Sydney, where she explores her favourite self-love activities: meditating in a candlelit bath; daydreaming; massage; chai tea and raw chocolate. Her idea of bliss is a day full of the above! Connect with her on her website ( www.sacredself.com.au), Facebook, Twitter, and on Pinterest. Hear how Michelle started her journey with self-love:

Michelle is even giving away a copy of her ebook "7 ways to love yourself" to one lucky reader who answers the prompt after the interview.  So generous – be sure to enter as you wouldn’t want to miss this awesome gift.  I love it! Check out her interview below as Michelle opens up and speaks from her heart.

What is the best piece of advice you have ever received? Who did you receive it from? 

This was not from one person but I feel the best advice I could ever have received – and could ever give is “Don’t compare yourself to anyone else.”  Realize that there is no such thing as competition.  We are all uniquely talented so why waste time comparing the incomparable?  Focus on being the best version of you – that’s all you can control.

Don’t worry about what anyone else is doing.  They are being themselves and doing things their way.  What is your way? Just keep bringing the focus back to you, your heart and your feelings. What is driving you?  What are your passions and how can you share these with the world, whilst being of service?

How important is mentorship in terms of your success?

I feel it’s incredibly important to have mentors in your life and a supportive community.  I feel very fortunate that I have a number of beautiful mentors in my life, who are older, wiser and more experienced.  It’s so valuable to have those whom I deeply trust and who can offer a wise perspective especially if I’m feeling stuck.  I don’t believe we can do everything on our own – and we’re not meant to.

What has been the best moment in your life so far?

Oooh that’s difficult.  I still believe the best is yet to come but there have been so many amazing moments. One particularly satisfying experience last year, was having a chapter published in a book called “Love & Oneness” in the bestselling Adventures in Manifesting series, about my journey of self-love, alongside amazing writers such as Marianne Williamson, Danielle Laporte and Lisa McCourt. That was exciting.  I also found trekking in the Himalayas in Nepal several years ago a profound experience.

Michelle Marie McGrath!

What tips would you have for living a healthy life?

Passion.  I truly believe that if you have passion for what you’re doing and look forward to each day unfolding with a positive outlook, then that will have a very beneficial effect on your health.  One of the most important things is to be aware of the quality of your thoughts and beliefs. This is one of the biggest influencers of everything going on in your life.  Just observe your thoughts when you’re in the shower or cleaning your teeth. Notice what arises.  Are your thoughts supportive and encouraging or defeatist and negative?  You can improve your health instantly by changing your mindset.  As someone who suffered from anxiety and depression, I know this to be true.

How do you motivate yourself to persist despite setbacks?

Ups and downs will always occur with the natural ebb and flow of life.  The key is to stay focused on my ‘why’.  Often we can be making lots of changes internally but it can take time for the externals to catch up and reflect this change. So that can be a little frustrating at times.  However, I feel it would be worse to not even bother trying.  Also setbacks are sometimes messages from the Universe for us to reset our course, re-examine what we’re doing and why. I believe the Universe is always working in our favour, especially when we don’t understand.

What has been your biggest setback? How did you deal with it? What did you learn from it?

One of the most challenging times I have ever had is when my marriage ended quite suddenly within a couple of weeks of having a rare type of miscarriage.   Suddenly I had nowhere to live, no money and was unable to work. I was having a series of appointments at the cancer clinic, suffering from insomnia and not really eating properly. I dropped two clothes sizes in a month.  It was the worse time of my life and I was reeling in shock for months. I then became very depressed for a few years and felt as though I was in a very long dark tunnel with no light at the end of it.  Honestly, it was also the best thing that ever happened to me and really set me properly on my journey of self-love.  It taught me a lot of compassion for those suffering from mental health issues, which is really so misunderstood by those who have never experienced it.  I also learnt that everything external can be taken from you in a moment and your truth and perception – is only true for you.

How do you deal with critics?

Truthfully, I ignore it if I don’t feel it’s coming from a genuine and constructive place.   I’m always willing and open to feedback but ultimately I’ve learnt that what is most important is how I think and feel about myself.  My whole life journey and business is about self-love, so I know with every fibre of my Being that seeking external validation is the biggest waste of time and energy.  It’s a bottomless pit, so I just don’t do it.  Don’t let anyone or anything outside of you have any authority over you.  That is the most disempowering things in the world and it serves no-one.

How important is social support in overcoming obstacles?

It’s valuable to be able to ask for support if and when we need to. Often I have shied away from this in the past as I didn’t want to appear needy or high maintenance.  However, it’s also important to be able to learn to receive and is part of the natural cycle of giving/receiving in life.   

What advice would you give others about goal setting?

Write everything down just to get it out of your head. If you don’t have clear intentions then how do you know when you’re making progress?  I also believe that even though it’s great to have goals, it’s also good to be flexible and open to change as new opportunities can arise that you hadn’t previously considered.  I’m a visual person so I really like vision boards too and having that colour reminder on the wall of what I would like to experience. It’s very motivating.  Focus on how you want to feel and create your goals and intentions around the desired feelings. This is the true reason that we set any goal, because of how we imagine it will make us feel.

What is a life lesson you wish you had learned before graduating high school?

See question 1!  Truly I would love to be able to communicate to all teenage girls that you are unique, beautiful, unrepeatable and perfect exactly as you are.  I wish I had known this and also that I had realized that no-one else could ever love me until I learnt to love and accept myself.  Self-love is the answer to all perceived self-esteems that we have and so many of these start in high school unfortunately.

Thank you, Michelle, for sharing your lessons with us and for truly speaking from your heart. Keep writing, inspiring, and empowering others! 

Join the conversation below. One lucky commenter (picked at random) who answers the prompt will receive a copy of Michelle’s ebook "7 Ways to Love Yourself."  Check out the link so you can find out more. Also, please leave your email address along with the comment so I can send you a copy of the ebook.  I have read it and recommend it.

The Prompt: “'What part of you most needs your loving attention today?"Can’t wait to hear what you come up with!  Winner will be chosen on Monday, March, 4th,2013. 

Thank you for reading and your presence at this beach retreat. You Rock! I'm looking forward to hearing your thoughts in the comment section below.

See you at the beach!