We had the good fortune of connecting with Alison Rothman MA CYT and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Alison, maybe we can start at the very start – the idea – how did you come up with the idea for your business?
My business was born from decades of personal study, professional trainings and studies, life’s endless unfolding immersed with a massive amount of trauma and drama, and my eventual landing as a full-time single mom.
When I was in my early 20s I found myself in a residential, holistic treatment center for eating disorder recovery. I was already a yoga practitioner and grew up as a dancer so I had a relationship to my body, yet a very dysfunctional one. My stint in this treatment center was the impetus for a lifetime of exploration in the realm of holistic wellness.
I learned quickly after unexpectedly becoming a single mother when my son was only a year old, that I needed to put my practices into action in my everyday life.
I knew that I needed to explore how to live an embodied life while in the trenches of motherhood, working, grad school, and the day-to-day realities of running a household. There was not a “go on retreat and learn” this was a nitty gritty, in the moment crash course and I hopped on board.
Enter several highly traumatizing experiences, juggling the demands of mothering a special needs child without any backup or support, countless heartbreaks, and feeling as though the walls could crumble at any moment….I needed to dig deep and refine my practices, evolve my repertoire, and open up to new possibilities of living and being moment-by-moment.
My business, Embody Life, was unearthed from my experiences in the trenches of life and is backed by decades of study, practice, experience, and expertise.
When we embody life, we embody exactly who we are in every moment. That, to me, is the ultimate goal of life. To live in a way that is in alignment with the truth of who we are, in integrity with our highest and brightest selves, and awake to the unfolding of this human life we are blessed to be living.
Embodiment has become such an overused and cliché term. I feel that many think of embodiment as an outer experience yet, to me, it is the deepest alignment with ourselves. Yes, we are in our bodies but it is so much more than that.
There is a palpable connection with life on the whole, with our capacity to cultivate presence in our bodies and their varying textures and sensations, yet it is deeper than that.
Being embodied means to feel at home in your body. Embodiment represents exactly who you are and where you are. There is no gap. Living embodied is an increased ability to be in your body in the present moment and to feel all of its sensations (emotional and physical).
Other qualities of embodiment and/or living a life embodied include a lack of force, a yielding to oneself and life’s unfolding, a connection from the inside out, staying strong yet soft in the moment, feeling grounded in yourself from deep within, an ability to rest into ourselves, and an ease and comfort in our own skin.
My work on the whole taps into this divine wisdom and practice and also delves into the practicalities of being a human in a human body having a very real experience of a human life. Body-Centered Holistic Coaching bridges that gap in a very real, raw, authentic, and empowering way.
So often I see women hunkering behind the scenes of their lives. They are not active participants but rather allow life to just happen for one reason or another. This work is an invitation to step in, to show up, to feel the whole range of human emotions and experiences, and to turn towards oneself, rather than abandon. Rather than disconnect, hide, cower in shame, numb, distract, stay stuck in the story…. We choose to embody life.
We choose to live a life with eyes wide open, heart lifted, connected to the core of who we are, to meet every turn with the whole of ourselves intact.
This doesn’t mean we don’t have moments of crumble, of forgetting…but those are the moments that are equally as important as they are our reminder of who we are, of what we are made of, of our strength and perseverance. The repair and getting back on the track of alignment is equally as valuable as the falling off.
When we do this work, we live a life of integrity with ourselves and that radiates outward into our lives on the whole. It is a messy, beautiful, inspired, real, and connected way of living.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
My work has been birthed from life. From a palpable experience of living a human existence and all of its many flavors. I always say that from struggle comes empowerment and I truly believe that.
I see all of what we experience in our lives to be medicine for the whole of who we are. They are all stepping stones to our evolution as humans and in putting the fragmented pieces of ourselves back together towards our wholeness.
We do not have to live as victims of our lifes stories and my work bridges that gap, supporting others in stepping out of the story and into the present with consciousness, awareness, compassion, and unwavering acceptance of who we are.
I have been immersed in this world of holistic healing and wellness, yoga, meditation, embodiment for over 25 years. It is through my own journey of healing holistically from a lifelong and very debilitating eating disorder, coupled with several highly traumatizing life experiences (house fire, near death encounter), abusive relationships, and single motherhood that I have honed in on a path of embodied wellness that is accessible to all.
The only requirement is that there is a willingness to do the work. This path is not an easy one, per se, nor is it a tear off the bandaid and all is well…it requires a commitment to oneself, a willingness to be uncomfortable, consistency in practice, and an unwavering belief in our innate ability to heal and grow and shift and morph ourselves.
There is not a magic formula here as each journey is unique. I have created an online program in conjunction with my groups and 1:1 sessions which are guidelines, exercises, methodologies, inquiries, and opportunities to deepen into oneself. Every person whom I work with and whom goes through one of my programs has their own path of healing.
What I can guarantee is that if you do the work, you will heal. You will change on a cellular level, sustainably, from the inside out. You will access parts of yourself that you may not have known even existed and you can open up to the possibility of living in a way that is life-serving, grounded in truth, and embodied in alignment and integrity.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I have lived in Boulder for 18 years and it has truly changed so much. There are few spots that remain that are local with longevity. Of course, there is the Pearl St. Mall area that is a staple, Chautauqua, endless hiking trails and surrounding mountain towns.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My journey has been solo on the whole yet, there have been many souls along the way that have influenced my direction. The first woman whom impacted me at a very vulnerable and young age was someone whom I feel honored to have known as a teacher, a mentor, an employer, a friend, and a true sister on the path. Christine Duncan, who passed unexpectedly from a short and relentless battle with pancreatic cancer, was the first woman whom I ever felt saw me for exactly who I was, at 22 years of age, she supported me, boosted me, believed in me, empowered me, and exposed me to some incredible work with at-risk youth, experiential education and wilderness therapy that my naïve midwestern self had never experienced before. I was with her when she took her final breath of life and it is a moment that will forever be imprinted in my heart.
From there, I received endless guidance from women and men along the way whom I call my angels. From the treatment center to my stint in a year program studying holistic bodywork just after getting out of treatment, to moves all over the western U.S. throughout my 20s…there were so many whom popped in and created deep impact along the way. I remain grateful for my journey up until this point, at 46 years of age, and value each of these interactions as a crucial piece of the puzzle of my becoming.
I have read and studied many methodologies in the realm of yoga, meditation and mindfulness, somatic therapies, and holistic wellness over these decades of inquiry. While so many have contributed to my work on the whole, it has been my own self-study and practice that have given me the ground and voice to offer the work that I do.
Other: Podcast: Embodied and Awake (on about 20 different channels…here is link on my website) https://www.embodymylife.com/podcast