Sister Story: How New Age Work Helped Me Go From Restless and Skeptical to Happy and Free

This blog post is a guest post by Courtney Dunsmore



I remember when I first heard about New Age mindset work- in particular, the Law of Attraction. I was in high school and desperately wanting my first boyfriend. After staying up until the early hours of the morning finishing The Secret (movie and book version, naturally), I was determined that this would be my time. I spent the whole next day doing manifestation exercises that would bring the man of my storybook dreams to me; I figured I was set. Unfortunately, I was naive in the way that after a week had passed and still no boyfriend, I was convinced the whole thing was a sham and obviously not meant for me.

The next cue was forgetting about all of this until the very beginning of 2016. I had been struggling with clinical depression and anxiety since my diagnosis early the year before. I was unhappy in school, pushing through because I was on the path that we’re all driven to high school, college, internship, same job for years, retire, done. I had my own business on the side that I was passionate about, but it was static, and I didn’t feel fulfilled in it.

I spent my days just “going through the motions”, so to speak. I felt unfulfilled and unimpressed with my life. What happened to the life every self-help book I read had promised me? What happened to the fact that these were supposed to be the best days of my life? I always thought that I’d have everything together at this, and here I was constantly daydreaming about a life society told me most likely wouldn’t be possible.

I was frustrated, restless, and unfulfilled…and I thought I was doomed to stay that way. But, I always have been ambitious, and never one to give up super easily- so I tried my last resort. I decided to read a f*ck ton of self-help books. I mean, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens shaped my middle school life, so I could surely find something just as good to get out of a slump now, right?

Right, I was. But before I read any books, I did googling. A lot of it. I googled business men and women, tremendous entrepreneurs and successful people- everyone from Oprah to Michael Dell, Marie Forleo, Pat Flynn, and even Will Smith and Jim Carrey- even Jay-Z, all had one practice in common that they contributed to their success.

What was it, exactly? Mindset work. Though not all of the top entrepreneurs (though many) attribute the Law of Attraction to their success, almost every single one I searched assigned some New Age mindset work to how they made it big.

This news just blew my mind. This is what people used to be successful? That old book I read in high school? There’s been a ton of buzz back to mindset work since The Secret was released, in recent years particularly, and it has been the topic of blogs, videos, podcasts, and countless books. So I started back at the beginning- by rewatching The Secret. It didn’t quite resonate with me the way it did that one fateful night in high school, but it did light a spark, and I knew I had to learn more. Off to Youtube I went! (I had exhausted Google at this point). This was the moment when I discovered Gabby Bernstein, Nick Ortner, more of Marie Forleo (clearly I have a love for Marie Forleo), Gay Hendricks, Danielle LaPorte, Denise Duffield-Thomas, countless more Oprah videos, and so much more.

The more I watched, the more sense it made…but I admit, a huge part of me was still very skeptical. There’s no way it was this easy, and there was no way I was just going to throw up every analytical part of my life into the air and dive into this full charge ahead. I decided to start with something easy and decidedly less “woo-woo” than most of the things I have adopted since- meditating.

First of all, if you don’t meditate, I’d highly suggest you start today. Meditating isn’t just for yogis; it’s for everyone. I started with something simple- apps. If you want something free and immediate, the Stop.Breathe.Think App is kind of cool, but it wasn’t until I started using the Calm app that I knew I had to dig deeper into this whole mindset thing. The Calm app completely changed the way my days ran after I decided to take the plunge and sign up for a year. With over 25 different tracks of various lengths and topics, I learned that there was a guided meditation track for everything. (Seriously, everything- from the forgiveness when I was stuck on old grudges, or even the emergency calm, which actually helped me a great deal during panic attacks. My favorite has to be the guided Commuting track).

I started with 5 minutes a day meditating. Then 5 minutes twice a day. Soon I was doing up to a day at a time of meditation (and not just at one time, I liked to split it up) was then, my world expanded. (Note that if you want more advanced guided meditation, the Omvana app is my absolute favorite) With just meditation, I was so much calmer, happier, and better performing in my business and relationships already- what would happen if I dove full on into the New Age mindset world?

I continued then by reading The Soul Searcher’s Handbook: a Modern Girl’s Guide to the New Age World, by Emma Mildon. Though it only lightly touched on everything, this book introduced me to almost everything new age, from Reiki crystal healing (on the to-do list) and numerology (which I now have an app on my phone for) to the more standard practices such as Feng Shui and horoscopes (which I both adore).

A massive Amazon search for New Age mindset books commenced- I had to learn it all, and I had to learn it all now. I read every Gabby Bernstein book (she’s an incredible start that’s not super “woo-woo”) along with cult favorites such as The Desire Map, Big Magic, The Tapping Solution (a guide into EFT, another one of my new favorite practices) and finally- my two new favorite books: Lucky Bitch and Get Rich, Lucky Bitch! Both by Denise Duffield-Thomas. Oh, wow…it was then I knew I was fully sucked into the New Age mindset way of life, and I was never going back. (And frankly, I didn’t want to.)

I did something big then… I put down $1500 to enroll in Denise Duffield-Thomas’s Lucky Bitch Money Bootcamp, a six-week ecourse dedicated to getting you to the next income level in your life by harnessing the power of the Universe through the Law of Attraction as well as large amount of other New Age techniques, such as EFT, Feng Shui, and more.

Wow. I never knew that New Age beliefs could be so practical, or so emotional for that matter! Denise taught me how I had emotional blocks and negative beliefs about money that I had been holding in since childhood that was affecting my business. I learned so many different ways I was self-sabotaging my income, and it felt fantastic. That same month, I doubled my income. Easily.

And though the “beginning” of my mindset journey started with that late night googling, the end of that month after the Bootcamp is when I like to say I adopted my New Age Spiritual way of life. The Universe took me under its wing, and I’m jubilant to stay there.

So yeah, I started out extremely skeptical. I judged those girls I saw with gorgeous crystals and yoga on Instagram. I thought that meditating and mindset were just for yogis and serial (read: extreme) entrepreneurs. Boy, I was wrong.

Now I start my day with chakra aligning meditation and end it with EFT for forgiveness and abundance. I wear a citrine necklace for open communication and good business. I’m still reading every mindset book I get my hands on, and I hope to start taking Kundalini Yoga classes in the next couple months (for now, I’ll settle for my app). I’m planning to go on a spiritual enlightenment retreat this summer in Bali- and yeah, I’m already planning out the Feng Shui furniture placement for my new apartment in August.

Am I still the same woman I was before? Heck no, and I’m incredibly thankful for that. Now, my business is booming. My relationships are better than ever. My depression and anxiety? Better each day- my sleep schedule is too. Oh, and yeah- I’m now a mindset coach and blogger for twenty-somethings to help them take the same journey that I started on. I spend my days helping women all over the world from South Africa to France, Florida, and beyond knock out their negative mindsets and self-sabotages around money, relationships, and more to live the life of their daydreams.

I’m happier, healthier, and wealthier than ever- and it turns out, all I had to do was look inside.

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Courtney Dunsmore is a mindset coach for women who are tired of living lives they aren’t obsessed with. She works to kick limiting beliefs to the curb along with identifying your money stories and success stories, to get you living the life of your daydreams.She coaches here, sends out motivational daily emails here, and has an awesome facebook group here.

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