Today we’d like to introduce you to Stephanie Spence.
Stephanie, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
Born into a chaotic home of two drug addicts, early-on, I experienced hardship first hand. As a child, I was ripped from my parents and placed into the foster care system where I lived as a ward of the state of Florida until my 18th birthday. During my teens, I hid behind book-smarts, excelling at school and ultimately graduating with a prestigious college degree from Harvard. However, the stresses of life and the shadow of my chaotic childhood soon reared its head in my early 20s as I fell into deep depression, anxiety and drug addiction. The challenge of overcoming an addiction seemed insurmountable at the time and I watched as my life starting crumbling around me.
Amidst the worst years of my life, I found my way to yoga practice. Yoga opened the door to my salvation and led to me finding meditation, strength training and healthy eating. These three things fostered my recovery and pulled me out of the depths of addiction by restoring my confidence, strength, and power. I rediscovered joyful existence through practicing and began sharing my growing movement, mediation and nutrition knowledge. I learned how the things we put in our body and mind fuel our wellbeing and how our body was built to MOVE. Through the consistent application of these healthy practices, I have been clean for over eight years and continue to share my story of the redemptive powers of mediation, movement and nutrition for mind, body and soul.
I am a testament to the incredible power of our minds to overcome insurmountable odds, transform obstacles in opportunities and release the power within each of us to build a life we love. I currently help change lives through my non-profit program Partner Up which brings movement to youth, corporate wellness programs and individual programming. My goal is to help build strength, confidence and peace in the lives of all those I serve.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Life has not always been smooth and I struggled to find my purpose for many years. I found that deep reflection during quiet moments and formal journaling exercises helped me discover my purpose and passion. For those just starting their journey, I encourage you to do a journaling session where you help identify your values. If you search the internet, you will find various exercise that will help you find your assess and rank your own personal values. Do these and really listen to what your mind and heart are telling you. Make choices in-line with these values and you will start to see your life-fulfillment grow and your path will begin to unfold for itself. Know that you have the power at any time to make a choice that brings you closer to your purpose and help you find joy.
Please tell us about MindyBody&Steph.
I specialize in getting people moving towards a healthier lifestyle and helping people achieve their weight-loss goals by applying mindfulness techniques. Through individualized coaching and my online presence, I bring strategies to working professionals for managing weight, getting more active and transitioning to plant-based diets. Coming from a working professional background myself, I offer health coaching and groups fitness classes for corporations and busy working professionals seeking to increase exercise engagement, explore plant-based lifestyles and overcome personal obstacles to healthy living. My philosophy is to empower individuals mentally so that they are ready and willing to push themselves and their families toward vibrant, healthy mental and physical life. With this in mind, I am especially proud of my Partner Up non-profit organization that aims to get kids moving through dance movement. We hold free or low-cost programs teaching ballroom dance in Florida schools.
Were there people and/or experiences you had in your childhood that you feel laid the foundation for your success?
My own experience with addiction and the inherited story of addiction from my parents has created an insatiable motivation for personal growth, a stead-fast resiliency in the face of obstacles and a lifestyle of self-sufficiency. I have reached rock-bottom and confronted my own negative thought patterns, habits and excuses that were causing suffering and keeping me from living to the fullest. My experience with addiction taught me deep compassion for myself and for others who are struggling against the chains of negative thought cycles and unwholesome actions. It taught me the power of small daily actions to have monumental power in our lives and given me unwavering faith that in each of us is the potential rise above any circumstances and find our inner strength.
I also credit my extension background in team and solo sports as a child with developing my appreciation for teamwork and commitment. Playing on a team taught me the value of bonding with others in service of a greater goal, while both team and solo sports honed my ability to commit and focus on a goal. In life, having our eyes on a goal allows us to approach obstacles as challenges. Instead of struggling against the current of life, we learn to work with what the game of life brings to us and confront it at the moment.
This presence of mind during gameplay also taught me to appreciate inner peace that comes through being fully present at the moment. There is an inner peacefulness when in a game or a match – that moment when your body and mind are one and you are fully present in the moment of play. That place often called the “Zone”, is a place very similar to the fully present mind in meditation and one in which studies have shown we integrate intuition and experience to unleash our greatest potential. Through sports, I developed an appreciation for the quiet, peaceful experience of being in “The zone” and try to carry this peaceful, focused attitude to all of my activities and sharing this concept with others. Finding the place where mind and body are fully present in the moment is something I encourage others to develop through mindfulness, meditation and full mind-body connection in exercise. I do this to help order each of us tap into our highest level of play – whether it be on the court or off the court.
- Corporate Group Class – $120/hr
- Individual Training – $120/hr
- Speaking Engagements – Please inquire
- Corporate Wellness Program – Please inquire
- Website: https://www.mindbodysteph.com/
- Phone: 8572849386
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mindbody_steph/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MindBodySteph
Wyatt Peck Photography