You’re smart, capable, and you’re not here to play by anyone else’s rules. You take a look around, and it’s clear you’re doing life your own way. And yet, you want it to feel more satisfying, and you want to feel even more freedom than you currently. You’ve tried upping your productivity and needing less sleep – but it’s not helping. That’s where I come in!
I’m Rachel Paz. I work with woman living life on their own terms but still being suffocated by all their tiny obligations. They feel so tired, and still aren’t quite getting where they want to go. I help women turn up the volume on their yeses, deliver graceful no’s, and connect to their own inner guidance so they can live from being more authentically themselves without the layers of expectations of others.
Did I wake up one day and say “I’m doing it my way, and no one can stop me!” and magically know exactly how to do that? No, definitely not.
Fresh out of a divorce in 2012, I shifted my career, consulted on the side, and played mama to a newly-diagnosed autistic 5-year-old. I was so proud that I was finding a way to make it all work.
My boss was flexible, and let me work really long days (and weekends) when I was off mama-duty, and short days on others. When I wasn’t working that job, I did marketing consulting projects to shore up my savings post-divorce. I went to the gym three days a week, had an evening with girlfriends twice a month (where, without fail, I drank too much wine and stayed up too late), and went on the occasional date.
When I was the parent in charge, I spent all the hours my kiddo wasn’t in school with him. That looked like two trips to the city a week for therapy, and a lot of intensity and constant vigilance in between.
I should have been happy, and there were happy moments, but I was mostly going through the motions.
Sure, I was doing things on my terms by all accounts, but my sanity was hanging by a thread.
I found myself drinking tequila out of a coffee mug in the evenings while doing 200-piece cat puzzles on repeat while my little one said, “Look, Mama, look,” every 10 seconds.
The only times my frustration and fatigue showed were when I’d cry in the bathroom, so no one else could hear or see. I didn’t realize I had a right to feel the way I did. Or that it was normal, or even acceptable. I thought I was doing it wrong.
I thought I was just supposed to pull it off at all costs. Keep all the plates spinning no matter what. That was who I was – a woman that figured shit out and handled it.
And then one day it hit me like a ton of bricks…
As I rushed to leave work one midday to take my son to an appointment in a city two hours away, my boss wanted to know why something completely unimportant wasn’t done yet. Instantly, I felt absolutely crushed by the weight of everyone else’s expectations of me.
I couldn’t make my boss happy and do right by my son at the same time. Not to mention, what was right for me. Hell, I didn’t even know what was right for me.
I realized I wasn’t living for myself. I was living a life of should’s based on what I thought made someone a good, valuable, lovable human being. In the process, I was dying a slow death of giving all of myself to others. And I felt heartbroken and hopeless about that.
It was time to reclaim space in my own life – like my life depended on it.
So I started looking at ways to put myself first in my own life. To pay attention to what I needed and wanted, without so much concern for whether that was inconvenient for other people. I did a lot of experiments to try on what happened when I started to behave differently.
It also happened at the same time that the circumstances of my life changed in really unexpected ways. In the process, everything I thought I knew about myself was proved wrong.
I quit a job that promised financial security, but that I could really not give a shit about. I moved to a city to create more opportunities to be around people who’s lives felt like mine. I I gave up being responsible to preserve my sanity. I was consumed with supporting my son through a difficult time, and too maxed out to earn a living; for the first time ever, I let a man financially support me. I asked for help in enormous ways, and didn’t try to return the favor.
Ultimately, the circumstances of my life combined with my choices forced me to abandon all of the pieces of my identity I’d always clung to – put together, super-capable, got-it-handled, independent, go-getter – until the only thing left was who I was when I had nothing to define me.
In the process of undoing my life, I developed a sense of loyalty to myself that had never been there before.
Where did all this get me?
The good news is, I’m still the more or less the same person. I still have really big dreams, I’m still a good person, I still like ice cream and hip hop music, I still care about the people in my life, and I still want to make a difference in the world.
Sure, I still have a special needs son, aging parents, an ex-husband, a business to run, a child to homeschool, and relationships to nurture. But now, in all of it, I get to be exactly who I am, without the extra layer of expectations. I say yes to what I do want, I say no without having to fight for it, and I make every single choice from a place of feeling connected to myself.
And because none of these things are dragging on me, I have a lot more energy to engage in and enjoy my life.
Now I lead women on this journey of examining who they are and who they want to be, so they can have more of the lives they want, without all the extra obligations added on top. I love to see women unravel the intricacies of what they want, detach from what is expected of them, and learn the skills to truly live on their terms.
To learn more about how I can help you, click here.