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In Conversation with Theresa Lyn the Founder of Anahata.
“Our greatest strength is the radiance of our heart.”
Theresa Lyn Widmann is a Health and Life Coach who loves assisting others to heal, dream and thrive through the application of a myriad of tools and techniques she’s studied and implemented herself over the years.
After leaving the practice of law and a successful career in sales, Theresa followed her true passions of healing, community and creativity. Over the years, she has studied and practiced various meditation and yoga styles, read countless books on yoga, nutrition, meditation, energy work and spirituality, and is regularly adding to her base of knowledge and experience. She has formally studied Health and Life Coaching, Sound Healing, Kundalini Yoga, Yin Yoga, Trauma Sensitive Yoga, Akashic Records, Reiki, and Mediumship amidst a plethora of informal studies in related subjects.
She shares her passion for community building and activism as Chair of Live Well Kingston’s Heal Well Focus Team, as a member of the Ulster County Restorative Justice Task Force and Conviction Integrity Unit, and as the former Festival Director and Board President for the non-profit, O+ Festival, an organization which empowers communities to take control of their collective well-being by exchanging the art of medicine for the medicine of art. She is also the host of “I Want What She Has,” a podcast and weekly live radio show on Radio Kingston whose mission is to heal the harm caused by the patriarchy by amplifying the feminine.
Konstanze: Hi, Theresa, how are you?
Theresa: I am doing so good. I’m excited to be here and get to chat with you.
Konstanze: I would love to ask you some questions. And one of my first one will be, what inspired you to do what you do?
Theresa: Well, this could be a very, very long story, so I will try to keep it brief. But I worked in the corporate world for much of my adult life. I mean, I was an attorney, I actually was a prosecutor for a while and did divorce work. And then I got into sales for a software company related to the legal industry. And I realized that it was not what I wanted to be doing. And so, I kind of went on a little bit of a soul’s journey, exploring different things in my life. When I went on the infamous trip to India, it was after a major breakup, I was supposed to get married, and the wedding was canceled. And I tagged along with some friends, a good friend, and two women who I didn’t know very well, and went on their India trip with them. And I went to see an Ayurvedic doctor in Rishikesh. I actually went to him because I was having digestion problems. My digestion wasn’t working regularly.
He sat down to talk to me about a lot of different things. And one of the things he said to me was that I needed more feminine energy. I kind of scoffed at this statement, I thought that he was inaccurately perceiving me as this, like, strong businesswoman and that I was out of place. I wasn’t supposed to be the strong businesswoman who was doing all these things, climbing the corporate ladder, and running marathons and all this stuff. But it kind of just stuck in my head, what he said about feminine energy. And when I came back to the States, I started exploring yoga and creativity. It was almost like he gave me permission. You know, one of the things he said was the feminine is creative energy. It was like he finally gave me this permission to pursue creativity, which was something that I had suppressed my whole life because I didn’t value it, right? Like, I was brought up in this world that you’re supposed to get a job and make a lot of money and accomplish and have a big home and all of these kinds of things.
And creativity was just sort of a waste of time because it wasn’t going to bring you money. That started my long journey of really trying to connect to my creative work. I eventually got into yoga, which was very different from my other physical practice, which, as I had mentioned, just briefly running marathons, climbing mountains in South America, these very aggressive things, which were great. But yoga was so slow, that it was very foreign to me to slow down in that way. You know, I was living in Manhattan, very aggressive party lifestyle, and once I found yoga, something just started to change for me. And that just kind of blossomed into a lot of different things. I really got very captivated by sound healing, and I have many gongs to support my sound healing initiatives, my curiosities. I was certified to teach actually Kundalini yoga. Just kind of been on a journey to continue to explore really from, like, the heart space, from an intuitive heart space about what it is I want to be experiencing in my life.
I was fortunate enough to be able to leave that corporate job and, you know, I’m still on a journey, for sure. I feel like that wisdom from the Ayurvedic doctor about the feminine just kind of became this, like, guiding light for me to be thinking about and seeing the world through the lens of the feminine. You know, I do a radio show and podcast that it is about amplifying the feminine, women’s voices, an antidote to the patriarchy, healing the patriarchy. I work with people individually doing that kind of work. And so, that’s kind of how I got there.
Konstanze: Great story. How would you describe what you do?
Theresa: Using the word coach is probably the easiest word to understand, although I have some resistance to that word. But I feel like what I do is a coaching kind of supportive practice that is focused on experiencing life through the feminine and healing. You know, so much of my work and training has been in healing. I incorporate different healing modalities into my work, but a lot of it is kind of anchored in, like, the coaching model.
Konstanze: Where do you produce your work location-wise?
Theresa: Well, I am based in the beautiful Hudson Valley. I had opened a yoga studio in Kingston, New York back in 2015. It has since closed, COVID closed it, and I don’t think it’ll reopen in the same place. But I do produce events in the Hudson Valley related to sound healing and a lot of new moon and full moon ritual work. Typically that’s happening in the Hudson Valley, although a lot of it is happening virtually these days.
Konstanze: I will put your information in the book for my readers to check you out and the website out and maybe join one of your seminars or your moon rituals, that would be very cool.
Theresa: Yeah, and into collaborate, you know, so much of this, like, feminine kind of energy is about collaboration and community, and so that’s what’s intriguing to me about it, is to find like-minded folks who are interested in doing things like yourself and then collaborating and see what can be created anew from it.
Konstanze: Yeah, totally agree. What do you love the most about your work?
Theresa: I love learning, I love learning so much. And so, I’m always learning and growing, even as I’m doing my work. And for some reason I’ve often played the role of, like, counselor to people. Maybe that’s why I started out as an attorney because I was, like, headed in that direction of being a counselor, but it wasn’t quite the right fit for me. It just comes pretty naturally to me, and I enjoy the intimate contact with others through the process of really getting to know people and working with them, supporting them on their own journey. So, the human connection, I think, is a huge part of it. Although I’ve been told that I’m half introvert and half extrovert, I definitely thrive off of human connection. I think it’s hard sometimes, you know, when I look at the world not to get to, like, big picture here, but, you know, so many folks are kind of placed in situations. You know, we’ve been maybe doing the kind of fast-paced, really demanding, high-demand corporate job.
There is this, like, adrenaline rush that can kind of become activated in doing that, but eventually it catches up with your body, because it’s hard to stop when we’re caught up in that system of the demands, work, and family, and all of those types of things, we end up fueling ourselves in ways that are out of balance, right? Like, some people take medication, some people are having three cups of coffee, you know, so it’s this constant, like, pumping the body full of adrenaline and activity, which eventually, as we started to see, you know, in the past, I don’t know how many years, what stress does to people, adrenal fatigue. You know, there are so many ways that the body just finally says, “No, I can’t take it anymore.” And it would just be my hope that we can create a system where people can go to work in a balanced way and still have the ability to slow down and nourish themselves because the body will not work properly if we don’t nourish ourselves like you’re describing.
Konstanze: I always think the biggest problem is that most people, and including me, have to get to the point where you can’t go further anymore to realize that you have to change.
Konstanze: Like, sometimes there is that idea that it’s not possible, you know, when you’re surrounded by people who are doing the same thing you’re doing, it becomes normalized. So, the more folks like us who are kind of breaking that model and living our lives a bit differently, that can then perhaps inspire people about the possibilities. That’s at least like what I like to tell myself.
Konstanze: What does a perfect day for you look like?
Theresa: It looks like waking up feeling well-rested and having enough space in my morning for a little physical movement and a little meditation, sometime with a warm beverage, like a tea, a little inspiration from a favorite book, usually. It is having, you know, the space to do both the work, task-oriented things that are necessary to get…hold the work together in a sense, but also to have space for some creativity. I try to do a little painting, I’m trying to work on some music associated with guided meditations and things like that. And then I really tried to get a good hour to an hour and a half outside. Whenever the weather is good, I’m almost always walking for at least an hour or an hour and a half or going for a hike.
Konstanze: The last gift you gave somebody, what was it?
Theresa: I gave just this week, and I gave my friend a massage for, not me, a gift certificate for a massage for her birthday.
Konstanze: Okay, nice. It’s there a very piece of advice you can give to people?
Theresa: Trust yourself.
Konstanze: Great. Is there anything, any hidden talent you would like to realize?
Theresa: I would love to be a singer and to be able to…
Konstanze: Well, you’re the first person answering me that from all the people I interview. I’m like, “Oh, wow.”
Theresa: Yeah, it’s one of those things that has been kind of milling about in my life. Ever since I was young, fear and other things kept me away from really diving into it. So, I’d like to spend a little bit more time in that area.
Konstanze: Teressa, where were you born?
Theresa: I was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, went to college there. And then I moved to Newark, New Jersey to go to law school, and that brought me east.
Konstanze: Would unlimited income change your lifestyle you have right now, or…?
Theresa: That’s a good question. I just took a workshop on a course on happiness. The professor went into a lot about income and how it plays a role in happiness, whether it does or not. Unlimited income, it might change things slightly, but I don’t think it would have a profound effect. I’ve had to kind of undo my emotional connection to money, and I feel like I’m actually in a really good place right now where I don’t strive towards it. I mean, I’m fortunate enough that I can provide for myself, but I might build a swimming pool in the yard if I had unlimited funds, but…
Konstanze: But, I mean, this is the perfect answer when you told me you’re striving for not reaching for money, and you tell me that you wouldn’t change that much. Yeah, you can maybe fly on vacation a little more often, or build a swimming pool in your yard, but you wouldn’t, like, dramatically change your life.
Konstanze: No, no, not at all. I feel very lucky. Because I do feel like I worked hard to get to this point. But I do feel very, like, my life is very rich and very full in all the good ways for me.
Konstanze: One more question. How would you aspire to be?
Theresa: You know, the first word that kind of came to mind was at peace. I guess it’s wrapped up a little bit in the idea of trusting in the flow of life, the divinity of life, the magic of life, and whatever is presented, without trying to control too much. I’m always kind of exercising this balance between surrender and control. I’ve gotten better at it, but I think, like that, just being at peace with the flow of life, I think, is where I aspire to be.
Konstanze: Amazing answer. Thank you so much, Teressa. It was so great to talk to you.
Theresa: Oh, my gosh. Thank you.
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