29. (S1E29) Creating Your Life The Way You Want It with Shannon Paterson

Today’s guest is Shannon Paterson. In this episode Shannon thought we were going to talk about her experiences as a 3X Ironman World Champion triathlete, 2x divorcee, near-death survivor, and eating disorder conqueror. But instead, we talked about self-love, female friendships, and the power to create your life the way you want it NOW. That’s how it goes in here. Conversations take on a life and direction of their own.

Shannon is a Mindset Empowerment Coach for midlife women & the founder of Live Your Truth. What she knows for sure is – that to truly feel your best, most confident, and most proud – it all stems from a self-love mindset. She says like the lionesses we are – fierce, loyal, brave, strong protectors, we need to care for ourselves with the same intensity that we care for others. We need to courageously explore new territory. And that territory lies within us. In the depths of our souls lies the source of our power. Waiting to be unleashed, waiting to roar!

Shannon didn’t mention this in the interview, but she is offering listeners a Free 30 min mindset empowerment coaching session to discuss self-love, relationships, building confidence, cultivating joy, physical health & wellness, and all topics related to helping you to Live Your Truth.

To schedule it, go to https://calendly.com/liveyourtruthgirl

AND, the first 3 women to schedule a call & mention “FINE is a 4-Letter Word”” podcast will also receive a Live Your Truth tank top. To see a picture go to: https://www.liveyourtruthco.com/product-page/lyt-tank-top

Shannon chose TWO hype songs. The first is Rise Up by Andra Day: https://open.spotify.com/track/0tV8pOpiNsKqUys0ilUcXz?si=kWq2INbOThWU77o-nnmhcA&dl_branch=1

And the bonus song is Wavin’Flag – Coca-Cola Celebration Mix by K’NAAN) https://open.spotify.com/track/02WDuAXXKumemrvsmrVBvH?si=asQJBf3ATMub7QWZas6tqA&dl_branch=1&nd=1

Connect with Shannon

Website www.liveyourtruthco.com

LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/liveyourtruthwomen/

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/LiveYourTruthCompany

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/liveyourtruthwomen/

Clubhouse https://www.clubhouse.com/@shannonpaterson

To see the replay of the 3 Simple Steps to Say F*ck Being Fine & Improve Your Life By December 31 workshop, you can go to https://bit.ly/FBF11-9replay


Lori Saitz 0:04

Hello, and welcome to Fine is a 4-Letter Word. My guest today is Shannon Paterson. Welcome to the show, Shannon.

Shannon Paterson 0:14

Thank you so much Lori. I'm so excited to be here.

Lori Saitz 0:19

Yeah, it's great to have you. Now I just completely blanked on how we met. Wow, I'm gonna have to have Greg fix this.

Shannon Paterson 0:29

We met through. Dara.

Lori Saitz 0:31

That's great. That's right. All right. Let's start this over again. All right,

Shannon Paterson 0:36

okay. And you are fuzzy. As soon as you started recording, you got fuzzy, but I hear you,

Lori Saitz 0:41

you're fuzzy too, but it'll it will be fuzzy on that end recording and the audio is still clear. Alright, so we're fine with that. Okay, we're starting over here, Greg. Welcome to Fine is a 4-Letter Word. My guest today is Shannon Paterson. Shannon and I were introduced by episode. I don't remember what episode it was. It was back one of the first ones to Episode Two. I think maybe one or two. Dara Goldberg introduced us. So I'm so excited that you're on my show now. Welcome.

Shannon Paterson 1:24

Thank you so much, Lori. Yeah, Dara, and I work together. We met through clubhouse. And we have a common mission, which is to really elevate and celebrate women in midlife, and she has started a brand called Loving Midlife. So I am working with her on that as well as my own branding with Live Your Truth Women. So it's just been a fantastic connection.

Lori Saitz 1:48

Yeah, actually, that's how Dara and I met to was through clubhouse. And ironically, I'm hardly ever on clubhouse anymore now. But yes, great, great platform. So let's start where I ask all of my guests, because I'm just so curious as to like, What inspired you to become the person you have become? What were the values or values and beliefs that were instilled in you, as a child that contributed to you becoming who you who you became in adulthood?

Shannon Paterson 2:24

I love this question so much. And I, there's there's multifaceted answers to this, because I think it's not just one thing. But for me, when I think about the, let's call the top three, communication in my family was next to zero. My mom and dad divorced when I was three is very young, and both sides of the family came from my dad was military. And my mom came from a farming community, where you were very stoic people, and you just did the work and you just sucked it up, and you didn't talk about your feelings, and you didn't have any kind of not only just no talk, but no PDA, No, none of that. But you knew that they loved you. Like that was just expected that you knew that. And in later in life, and through even through childhood, that inability to communicate in a very open non surface level way was I didn't even know that it existed, that you could actually have those kinds of deep conversations and deep analytical, you know, of self and how that opens you up to being able to have amazing friendships and relationships later in life. So I went through, you know, my childhood and going into starting to date and then getting married in completely incapable of being vulnerable and being able to talk to people about how I felt, because I didn't know how I felt quite honestly, I had never taken the time to really think about what like to be self aware that for me, I never did that, because I didn't have that role modeled for me. My family was about doing doing doing doing right.

Lori Saitz 4:20

And right worth doing as opposed to being

Shannon Paterson 4:23

right. Yeah. So you know, when I talk about when I talk to my clients about, you know, what are the steps of a, first is awareness, second is acceptance. And third is action. I was in action, most of my life always in action. And that impeded my progress in being able to have really deep relationships with people. Because I didn't have I didn't know who I was. I didn't even know what was important to me or who deep down that I was. So that's what I really tried to help Women dig down to that place. And that's often I did a room yesterday actually in clubhouse on self love. And just the title alone self love tips and tools. It was flooded with women. And it wasn't like, let me tell you how to do it, sister, it wasn't that it was. I don't really I don't even understand this concept. Can you explain it to me? How do I get it? I want it, but I don't, I don't know how to get it. And that to me is it's so common. And I can get it because I, I've been there.

Lori Saitz 5:35

Right? Like, to me, that's the real pandemic is that we don't love ourselves. We don't even understand what that means. And in the past few months, I've been exposed to a part of my mastermind and one of my mentors, talking about telling yourself that you're proud of yourself. Oh, my gosh, the first time somebody suggested I do that I burst into tears. So hard.

Shannon Paterson 6:04

Yeah, you know, it's interesting, because I have been proud of things that I have done. Like I said, this goal, I met this goal, I'm proud of reaching that goal. That's my action. That's my action, even though I'm good with that. But I was so caught up in all of that, that I could never really say I was proud of the inner me, the person who, who I'd never took the time to nurture and grow and figure out how I could be more how I could just, you know, bring in more light and love. And that was where I was stuck is Yeah, like, I'm gonna do this, I'm gonna sign up for this race, I'm gonna do this race, and then I'm gonna, you know, go do this other thing that I would do this business and then, you know, like, that's just go go all the time.

Lori Saitz 6:54

Right? Right. So what? Before you understood that about yourself? What did? What was the result of that belief of all action? no feelings? What kind of situation? Did you find yourself in there?

Shannon Paterson 7:11

Yeah, there was multiple situations, right? So I think the first situation was, I had this identity that I was trying to put out into the universe of someone who was very strong, physically, mentally, I was tough. I was willing to do you know, scary things like I did Iron Man and I moved 3000 miles across the country to go to college. And I, you know, did all these things that seemingly weren't strong. And I was really protective of that identity, I was also being 48 years old, in the era where women had to be more masculine, to make it in the workplace, you had to, you know, push down emotion you didn't let people in. And what I realized is that wasn't serving me by by not allowing myself to be an emotional being that I am as a female, that I was pushing people away, and I wasn't able to really have the kinds of relationships with women or men that I, I still wanted, I wanted that I was surrounding myself with people. But I was still very guarded. And, for me, I've spent my whole life being a personal trainer, and an athletic coach. And through the years of personal training, as you can imagine, your personal trainer often becomes your therapist. Your people tell you all sorts of stuff. And I realized that when I opened up to those people, and I shared my experiences I let people in that was like the first step. Starting, you know, when I started working is that like learning like, oh, like, I'm not the only one who feels this way. There's other women who seem to apparently like have it all going on. But then when they talk to me, they're having relationship problems or they're, you know, dealing with their kids or they're not their work is making them unhappy, whatever the case may be. And so having that start of how we could start talking there because for me, exercise, and barriers of what you're going to let people know about you, they start to come down movement somehow opens up your ability to share quite often to you. I come from a running and triathlon background. So you're doing a lot of that kind of long distance training, and it just helps you, like let that guard down so that I can see how that would be the case. Yeah, and I feel like that was the first step and then The bigger moments I think we're, you know, I've been married twice. And the first time I was only married for two years, and I was embarrassed, I didn't talk to anybody about the fact that I was gonna, you know, do this divorce thing. I just held it all close to the vest. Because I was so worried that people were going to think that I was weak, why can't you just like make that work? Right? What's wrong with you? All those things that you build up in your head as judgments? Right? Right. So and I think a lot of women go there.

Lori Saitz:

Did you have a belief that it was okay for other people to get divorced? But not you?

Shannon Paterson:

I absolutely didn't judge anyone for getting divorced for sure. I yes. In answer to your question, the short answer is yes. Because I felt like I should have known better. Like, they're all the signs were there, I just blatantly ignored them. Because I really wasn't able to be self aware enough to see my role in that relationship and how that just the dynamic didn't make sense. Not a bad guy. Just didn't make sense. But I was gonna force it. Because going back to like, what did you grow up? And what were the things that you learned growing up that impacted you later, I grew up being told life is hard. Everything you do is hard. Marriage is hard. Work is hard, suck it up, don't complain, just be happy for whatever you've got. So that's, I felt like I should have been able to do better in that first marriage. But the sad part for me is I left that marriage and learn nothing. Really, really learn anything about myself at that time. Other than I didn't want to have that. I didn't think that was the right energy for me. So I went to a completely different energy, which was, so I went from my stepdad that was my first, my first husband basically to my dad is the second husband. And that's where I really started to realize what I was all about why I was getting into these relationships that were so toxic. And focusing on how I could learn and grow from those. It's easy to like, be mad and place blame. And, you know, he did this to me, and he's so horrible. But it really comes down to I had to come to terms with choices that I made. And to not blame myself or shame myself. But to really try to dig deep into why what was my Why? Why did I do that. And that's where you have to go back and look at childhood experiences and all the things that you internalize over time that you don't even realize. And that's not a super comfortable journey. But I'm trying to really put that out into the universe with my empowerment coaching and with my live your truth that let's talk about this. Ladies, let's normalize, that everybody has things they wish they'd done differently, doesn't make you a bad person. We were all doing the best we could at the time. But let's talk about the here and now and how we can right this day, you can start today to delve in to figure out, you know where that came from the awareness piece, then you go into the acceptance of Okay, yeah, if my best friend told me those things, I wouldn't think she was terrible or stupid or silly or crazy. or any of the things we tell ourselves all the time. Right, I would actually be very empathetic and probably try to build her up. So now I need to do that to me, I need that acceptance piece to be acceptance of me. Then I can work on the action. But yeah, but the action before all the other stuff.

Lori Saitz:

Yeah, exactly. We a lot of times get it backwards. We just keep taking action, we want to action ourselves into being different. As opposed to coming from the inside. Working on that first and then the outside changes. Because right and the actions that we take are changing. I was going to back up, was there a specific? What was the specific thing that triggered you going? Okay, wait, I need to look at what's going on with me. What my part in this is.

Shannon Paterson:

It was actually a gradual progression in that marriage. There were like ridiculous numbers of red flags going into it that I just said, No, no, I can do this. I can do anything. It's the harder the better. I can do this. I can be the one to like connect with this person like no one else can and all those things that you convince yourself of And over time, it was a daily battle. And you know from the person who came from a background where nobody talked to each other, nobody yelled, nobody screamed, nobody did any of those things into a marriage where I was being yelled at. very regularly, let's call it several times a week, and have been put in that kind of flight or fight stunt like path for me, I always wanted to run away. That was a build up of stress. Over time, that I let myself be brainwashed into thinking that my health was deteriorating. Because of the other things I was doing in life. I was doing Ironman on a super high level competitive place. And my ex at the time was like, well, that's what happens when you do all these things and whatever. But what I had to really see is that I got shingles twice, I got pneumonia twice, I ended up with a systematic itching to the point where I was laying on the floor on my tile floor buck naked crying because I was itching from the inside out, and I couldn't make it stop. I got into a horrible bike accident where I literally woke up in the ER with a broken neck. And my ex husband at the time was like what's you know, you need to just suck it up. What's wrong with you? You're being so selfish about this whole broken neck thing? Why can't you take care of me? So that process over time?

Lori Saitz:

Yeah, you started finally listening to the messages.

Shannon Paterson:

Yeah. And it really came down to he started drinking very heavily. And that's when, again, I tried to be the one to like, fix everything I was gonna go, I went to Al anon, and I did all these things. But I, I just realized that he wasn't going to change. And we say this all the time, you know that you can't change someone, I thought I could change enough to make it work because I had grown up with that ethic. And I realized that it was literally killing me. Like my health was deteriorating, I was becoming this shell of a person who just didn't share anything with anyone because I was so embarrassed. And so I just felt stupid, quite honestly, I felt stupid that I had gotten myself into this situation. So the big, the big aha moments that happened during that time, is that I started to share my story with my friends, I started to be real and tell them, I'm getting verbally abused, I'm sometimes getting physically abused. I'm, I'm feeling that I need to make changes in my life. But I'm scared. And I'm sharing that was the big wreck a big point of recognition for me that I had to talk, I had to get it out of my body so that I could process it and actually start to understand it. There's something about the power of the human voice, especially our own when we let it out of our mouths. And that's why platforms like this with podcasting are so, so key for so many people as a way to really learn more and feel more comfortable putting that out into the universe. I'm sure you got on that with doing the

Lori Saitz:

Yes, it's so important. I'm so glad that you brought up the idea of speaking your truth because as we touched on a little bit earlier about feeling the emotions, and have these conversations all the time about allowing ourselves to feel whatever it is, we feel if it's anger, or fear or hurt. Feeling the emotions because there's no way through them, except through them. Like we have to feel it. And you're adding now to that whole concept of speaking it as well speaking your truth, this is what's going on with me. And again, the only way through it, is to speak it as opposed to hiding it.

Shannon Paterson:

Right? Because I feel like if we leave it inside, we go round and round in circles and we convince ourselves it's really not that bad. You're making too much of this Everything is fine as you would say, right? Fine. So that is why it was so important for me to start opening up and talking to other women friends and and not looking for them to solve my problem. But I just I need you to listen to me because it will help me process and to their credit. No one said to me, what the hell is wrong with you? Why would you ever put up Get out now everybody under Did that I needed to go through it on my own timeline? Yes. And just was there for me. And that's, that's what's important, I think when you're ready to start sharing with other women, is to find the women who are trying to fix your problem, who aren't going to tell you what to do, but are just there to be a sounding board so that you can figure out what you want to do, which is what coaching is all about to as we coach women, that's what we're there to do ask questions, so that people have to answer those and go, Oh, wow, I didn't really even realize I felt that way until you asked me.

Lori Saitz:

Yeah, exactly. And that's what we do in in my program, too. And the F*ck Being Fine experience about talking about it, stop lying to yourself, and stop compromising who you are. Right? And that's what when you start speaking your truth, that's what you're doing.

Shannon Paterson:

Right? And which is why I call it live your truth. Live right through to speaking your truth do Yeah,

Lori Saitz:

yeah, we're on the same page there. And it's, it's beautiful that you had friends that who would hold that space for you. Because a lot of women may have friends, but not friends who necessarily know how to manage that conversation.

Shannon Paterson:

Right? And that's, again,

Lori Saitz:

why coaching is so different than just going to friends.

Shannon Paterson:

Yes, but my hope is that by having these kinds of podcasts and conversations on clubhouse at other places, we can normalize that, that it is okay to just listen to other people you don't have to, because women want to fix everything for each other because we love each other. Right? It comes from a place of beauty and love, usually. But that, that we we as women have to be willing to put ourselves out there there comes this point when like mid life where you're like, Well, I have my friends These are my friends and now I don't really make close friends anymore. We put our own self limiting beliefs on that that like we can't do that anymore. But when in actuality what's happening is we're just putting up barriers putting up walls, and not being the one to be like I'm gonna come knock on your door like you did when you were five. Hey, Lori, can you come out and play with me? We don't do that anymore. When we're a midlife we think that somehow magically friends are going to fall from the sky and that you know that's how it works but but the real thing that I encourage women to do is to you be the risk taker you go out there if you find someone some woman's energy like you just feel that get in her space, say hey, I love your energy I want to like yeah, how can we get to know each other better? Some people may not vibe with you and that's fine but the reward of having the ones that do is there's nothing better in life in my opinion, than having those kinds of relationships that are so deep and so real. That's the true happiness the key to happiness in my opinion.

Lori Saitz:

Yeah, there there are so many women who are wanting to make friends and I find it difficult to make friends at midlife and yet there are so many ways to connect with people like you're saying like I have that piece of allow yourself that moment of vulnerability to say hey I like your energy I want to hang out with you Do you know you know do you want to be my friend like but most people are open to that because they're wanting the same thing. They're looking for it not finding it or not knowing where to find it so if you say that to them, they're going to be open to it.

Shannon Paterson:

I think I think some people say that they want it but like anything else in life they'll be like but I don't really have time to do that or what so they're already deprioritizing it. Which I you know that's a choice that's a choice that you make but I think we do have to be real with ourselves in how important is it to you correct to develop those relationships because like anything in life, you will find time and you will make space if it's important.

Lori Saitz:

Yes. And is that asking yourself is that a protective mechanism? Like I don't really have time because you're afraid they're gonna say no so you're already rationalizing I don't have time for them anyway.

Shannon Paterson:

Right? You're already what-ifing into the future? What if they don't like me What if They do these and if I just stay here in my safe space, I won't get rejected.

Lori Saitz:

Yeah. Yeah. And that's the case for all kinds of situations not just making friends. But that's a great example of it. When we talked before, in our pre show, chat, you said something about that you have stopped worrying if people thought you were weird. That's true. I love that.

Shannon Paterson:

How did you Yeah, you know, honestly, I think because what I what I say with my second divorce and that just like, I just felt like I was so broken down for on such a deep level that I was going to come back. I was going to reincarnate as the real woman that I am. And if you resonate with me, come along, sister, and if you don't, that's okay. Not everybody has to like me. I'm okay with that now in midlife, because like a lot of women, I've wanted to like people, please. And I, chameleon my way through life, like, Oh, I can act like this. So this person likes me. Instead of thinking about do I like that person? Do I even want that person in my life? So I think that for me, saying, Here I am, this is me, I I am not going to pretend to be something that I'm not I'm going to tell you how it is because I want you to be real with me too. And you're gonna attract is that law of attraction, right? We talked about that. It's for real. Since I have made that shift. I don't have toxic people in my life anymore. I have toxic friends, there might be family I can't get away from but my friends we all have those. Yeah, my friendships are real my relationships with you know, I am engaged. I have a relationship with an amazing man who you know, is just on every level, the perfect match for me, not that he is in front of me, above me any of those things, we are matched up, we are in sync, we equally bring joy to each other's lives. Because I realized that I deserve that I want someone who's who loves me, for me, and that's the same me respecting and loving him on that same level. And I just feel like for most of my life with most of my relationships, I was chosen. The guy said, I like you. And I'm like, Oh, yay, somebody likes me. I'm gonna like you back. That'd be like listening to that gut intuition, that gut feeling of like, whoo, oh, but that's a right he look at all these great qualities that he has that I'm

Lori Saitz:

yeah, yeah. glossing get more excited that you got picked for the team? Yeah, then whether you wanted to be on the team.

Shannon Paterson:

Right? Right. And that applies to female friendships, too. Right. So you, you're trying to find your tribe, as we say, and it may take a couple of tries that doesn't have to be you know, you don't get you don't have to stay safe. Stay friends with that person, you can move around to different tribes, try them out, see what works for you. And there's some friends who serve you for a season, right? a season of your life where, you know, I've been in places where I was in a bad place mentally, like beating up on myself. And so what do you attract, then you attract those people that do that too. And now I'm not there. And so I'm attracting other women who either are, where I want to where I am or want to be there that I can serve and be like, come on, sister, grab my hand. I'm going to take you with me and we're going to do this

Lori Saitz:

Yes, yes, I love that. That's I feel the same way that of being in that place. And the the one other thing I wanted to add to the whole conversation about friendships is that no one person is going to serve everything so you're gonna have different types of friends potentially that serve different purposes in your life, or that you can have different conversations with that not everybody is the same. We want to say level of friendship, but everybody has their their different. I don't know place in the circle, I guess.

Shannon Paterson:

Absolutely. Absolutely. They're not everyone has to be your best friend. They can just be your friend. And that's good, too. That's that's super valuable.

Lori Saitz:

It is. Yeah, yeah. I have loved this conversation. Before we go, the one question you knew was coming. When you need to get energized and hyped up what’s the song you listen to?

Shannon Paterson:

So I knew you're gonna ask me this. So I was on my Spotify yesterday I'm like, which one because I have so many hype songs that I love because I'm a music person, like I teach spinning classes, and I've always been a dancer and I love music. And I was like, I wonder if Lori will let me have two. Because I was like, I can't decide between these two. But I'm gonna give you just the one what are the ones that I narrowed it down to is by Ondra Day, and it's called Rise Up. And I like her original version because they have a couple of different kind of like, do you know spiced up versions, just the pure rawness of her voice, it just gives me It starts slow, kind of like gets you in that vibe. And then it picks up and it's got that gospel feel. It just gets me in tune with like, I can rise up, I can rise up against any challenge any day. I've got this, I'm gonna do it.

Lori Saitz:

I love that song. That's such a good song. Thank you for sharing that. And now you know, I'm going to ask you what the other one is.

Shannon Paterson:

Oh, good. Okay, so my other one, I don't know if you've heard it. And it's, it's more of like a fun song. It's called Rising. But now I'm going to say it wrong. The Rising Flag. Now I have to look it up, because I can't believe I just blew the whole title. But the whole message of it was actually from the Olympics. Originally the last Olympics, not this one. And it talks about as, as I get older, I will get stronger. And I love that chorus because it goes along with the whole midlife movement that I'm doing with Dara. And how old doesn't mean passe. It doesn't mean we have to lay down and just accept anything it actually means we're in this beautiful new place of wisdom. And we can really get better with age. I certainly feel like I have.

Lori Saitz:

Okay, do you remember who who did the song?

Shannon Paterson:

I am going to look it up. Oh, I got it. Wavin’. Like no G on the end, Wavin’ Your Flag. And oh, yeah. All right, next. Yeah. And it okay. It's if you really listen to the words that was written for like a team, but I think of that team is minded, like women team. So when you listen to the song, think of that as you're listening to it. And it's very empowering. Okay, all right. All right. I know for you.

Lori Saitz:

No, no, we're all. It's all good. I have not heard that one. Or if I have I didn't, I don't know it. So I'm gonna have to go check that out now. And speaking of checking things out, so if people want to get in touch with you continue a conversation, hear more about your program, get into one of your clubhouse rooms? How do they get in touch with you?

Shannon Paterson:

I'm on all my social media. So I'm on Instagram and Facebook and LinkedIn is live your truth women. You can also find me on clubhouse under it's just my name Shannon Paterson. And I hold lots of rooms there on female empowerment and female uplifting and having those beautiful conversations and I also have a website, live your truth CEO as in company.com. And there's where you can find me in any of those places. You can DM me if you have questions, or you want to talk about, you know, the kind of coaching services that I offer, I'm getting ready to roll out a program that is going to be a combination of fitness and and that mental component of empowerment through self love and self discovery.

Lori Saitz:

Sounds awesome. Thank you. I will put links to all of that in the show notes. appreciate you joining us today, Shannon, on Fine is a 4-Letter Word.

Shannon Paterson:

Thank you, Lori. And I just want to say huge, huge kudos to you for what you're doing to elevate this message for women that we need to talk we need to stop saying everything is fine, and to really open up and just support each other. So thank you so much.

Lori Saitz:

Yes, you're welcome. All right. Take care. You too.

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