eWomenNetwork member, Felicia Searcy, the Premier Results Expert, had a rough start in life. Both parents suffered from mental illness, abuse, addiction, suicide threats and more. Due to a lot of personal development on Felicia's part, she learned from her dark past and transformed it into life lessons that she now shares to help others achieve their dreams. Watch and learn simple steps to achieving exactly what you want in life that starts with recognizing the patterns that hold you back and then interrupting those patterns as they arise. Find out how to, "notice what you're noticing," and accept the person you truly are. Learn how to turn your dreams into reality and live the life you love.
Watch highlights of the podcast video below or listen to the entire interview on the eWN Podcast Network.
Below is an edited transcript from the interview with Felicia Searcy. Click here to listen to the entire interview at eWN Podcast Network.
Family Secrets Behind Closed Doors
PHYLLIS SMITH: Hello and welcome to Spotlight on eWomenNetwork. I’m Phyllis Smith. So, our members spotlight focuses on members of eWomenNetwork who have a story to tell. A story of rising to success despite their circumstances. We’ve been through it, we’ve all got stuff right, but some are more extreme than others. My guest today is no exception to that. She was raised in a family of parents who have suffered from mental illness, her mother was an addict, there was violence, and abuse. And yet today she has a successful business. She is a woman who has so much peace and wellness and love to give. I just adore being around this woman. Please welcome Felicia Searcy.
FELICIA SEARCY: Yeah, thank you Phyllis it’s my joy to be here this morning.
PHYLLIS SMITH: So, I just described a life of being raised by both parents who have mental illness. Oftentimes it’s one, not both with violence and abuse. So, let’s start there. Let’s start from the beginning and tell me a little bit about what it was like growing up in your home. What kind of mental illness are we talking about? What kind of addiction are we talking about?
FELICIA SEARCY: Yeah, so let me say just right up front that as I share this I’m sharing that human element that shows up in so many people as they become disconnected from the essence of who they are. Whether it shows up as an addiction or mental illness, or just an unawareness that then results in unskilled behavior, and that as I share this, know that I’m sharing from a perspective of realizing that my parents gave the absolute best that they could at the level of awareness that they had. And I’m deeply grateful that I have had a terrific level of support and study to arrive at that awareness and that relationship with my past and actually with both my parents.
So, my mother was a drug addict, alcoholic, depressive and probably had borderline personality issues going on. My father was bipolar, which then would manifest in forms of rage. So, you know what was fascinating about it is that outside-looking-in, we looked good. He taught at the local Catholic high school, he was a football coach, very successful, you know, had a big write up in the paper.
As with many families when there’s these kinds of conditions walking in the door, and it’s like behind closed doors there was that hair trigger violence in terms of my father’s rage and my mother’s inability - there were 5 of us and so we were stair stacked, boom boom boom, one right after the other. So, it was a tremendous amount for her to deal with and being unequipped and dealing with her own depression and alcoholism and drug addiction.
So, things like my mom had several suicide attempts growing up. And she would have them when I was the only one in the house, and so I stopped her, found her, took care of that. I took on the world making sure my brothers were fed, particularly after my dad left. Making sure that things were taken care of in the household during the times that my mother was not able to.
PHYLLIS SMITH: Let me jump in there Felicia for a second. So, how old were you when this was going on?
FELICIA SEARCY: There’s 13 months between my younger brother and I, so, I was a little over a year old when my mother was admitted into a mental institution because of postpartum depression. Then when I was 9 or 10 is when I remember the beginning of suicide attempts and her alcoholism really took off when I was a preteen and teen.
I grew up in Wisconsin and my dad moved back south to Louisiana and one by one took kids with him, and so I was the last one left with my mother and I remember him asking me to move down. My father was, even in his rage, he had a remarkable sense of family. So, there was just this dichotomy and mixed messages. Here’s the thing that I think people miss with this; is that with both my parents there was a deep underlying desire to want to do better, to want to love,. And what I’m grateful for is that my ability to be able to have somewhat of a sense of that growing up, and to be able to claim that for myself. So, it was just such a disconnect for them, and you could see that is was incredibly painful for them as well that they couldn’t quite show up in the way, particularly with my mother, that she couldn’t quite show up in the way that she wanted to.
PHYLLIS SMITH: And let me jump in again. So, now you’ve realized it. Now you realize it as a grown up and we’re gonna talk about how you came to knowing that, but when you’re a child experiencing the 2 people you trust most in the world, the 2 people who are supposed to be your cushion and for you to fall on - now you are the one being the cushion for them. Am I right? And you’re having to grow up. Kind of reminds me in a certain way of the show Shameless, which is one of my favorite shows where the kids, you know, have to take charge, you know, the oldest daughter. But you weren’t even the oldest of the sibling!
FELICIA SEARCY: No, I was in the middle.
A Pivotal Moment
PHYLLIS SMITH: And yet you were still taking on the role of the nurturer. And so, it’s really fascinating to me when you hear stories like this about rising above. So, what was the pivotal moment for you to turn things around that enabled you to rise above?
FELICIA SEARCY: That’s a great question. So, when I got into high school and college in particular, I was somewhat remove from it. You know, there were still behaviors, you know - my mother called in college and would threaten suicide if I didn’t come back home and take care of her. There was 1000 miles between us cause I was in Louisiana and she was in Wisconsin.
I Got Help
I was 22 when I started a 12-step program specifically designed for family members of addicts and dealt with the mental illness piece as well which then led me to develop a relationship with a spiritual energy. I don’t care what you call it, you can call it the universe, you can call it God, you can call it love, you can call it universal force – I call it spirit. I call it the spirit of life. To develop a relationship with this creative force that breathed us into existence to help me heal, to help me understand and separate the behavior from the essence of the person and to develop a sense of compassion and understanding that if they could’ve done better they would’ve done better.
I think one of the most powerful pieces for me was to understand that it really didn’t have anything to do with me. I just happened to be the one there. It was not something because of me personally. It was because of their own demons. And so as I took a deep dive into my own healing process, I was able to wake up to elements of myself that have been there all along, and I can look back and realize there were elements in me that fundamentally where there the entire time I was growing up. As I was able to continue to harness those elements and expand and grow, it allows me to grow into an even greater version of me as I support other people in becoming even greater versions of themselves. Understanding that as we embrace our human experience it deepens our awareness that there really is this life force moving through us and that life is fundamentally good, people are fundamentally good, the universe is fundamentally good and we’re able to tap into that. No longer are we defined by our past or conditions but we are catapulted by it.
Like Mother - Like Daughter?
PHYLLIS SMITH: Yeah, absolutely. One thing about mental illness is that often it’s really a chemical dysfunction. Right? Did you ever have a concern that you had mental illness as well?
FELICIA SEARCY: Yeah. It’s a great question, especially in college when I got so depressed and you know, suicidal myself, and I was terrified that I was gonna, particularly my mother was terrified that I was gonna end up like my mother cause it was just in the human form - it was ugly. I mean her behavior, it was just insidiously ugly. She wasn’t, but the behavior, the way that she would show up in her illness. Now I want to make sure that people hear the distinction between the two. This is not a characterization of my mother. That it’s understood that there was something so profound going on inside of her that was her inability to monitor. That she just didn’t have it. So, the abuse, the sexual abuse. I was terrified that I would end like her.
So, when people started, I actually did like 5 family weeks in a space of 2 months. I kind of went to my own treatment, but I didn’t go inpatient cause I didn’t have any, you know, I wasn’t an addict and I didn’t have, um, I was not mentally ill. It was such a relief to have an explanation and understand that number 1 it was mental illness and it wasn’t just unfettered craziness and that I didn’t exhibit the symptoms, I didn’t have it, and if I did I knew now that there was help, but back in the 60’s and the early 70’s, you know, well 60’s through 70’s we didn’t have the awareness that we have today. People just struggled and suffered through it.
I mean her behavior, it was just insidiously ugly. She wasn’t, but the behavior, the way that she would show up in her illness.
Grateful for All of It
PHYLLIS SMITH: It’s so hard when you see someone and someone you love in such pain. At the time I imagine when you're young, you’re pissed off. It’s like, “Why does this have to happen?” I mean my husband grew up where his parents were abusive to each other, and this whole sense of you never know what’s going to happen when you walk in the door. It’s this constant state of kind of fear.
FELICIA SEARCY: Yes.
PHYLLIS SMITH: And then you build up a wall. Did it impact you in any way in your relationships where you kind of built up a wall, or you didn’t have trust? Or did all this work that you did in your early 20’s when you were in college help you bypass that part of it?
FELICIA SEARCY: Well, so, here’s what’s interesting about this and this is what I help folks understand. There are patterns that get established that will continue to run at such an insidious level even after forgiveness works. So, I think the wall for me was that illusion of unworthiness and that there was a part of me that didn’t feel like I deserved love or I had to keep earning love. I had to keep proving myself, and that’s an element that I still keep a very close eye on today, because it was a survival pattern that I allowed to get wired into me. So, now to recognize the signals in my thought process, in my body, in the way I’m seeing myself, and to be able to do the pattern interrupt and say, “You know what, that’s not accurate.”
But I tell you the other thing Phyllis, that I’m very aware of - one of the things that I, you know because you’re right - my life was dependent on being able to read the temperature of the room. And that’s not being dramatic, but there was that level of violence that was actually life threatening. So, my life became dependent on being able to read the temperature of the room, being able to clearly read the nuances in people. Which is what makes me so brilliant at what I do today. So, to be able to harness that gift of being able to read beyond just the face value of somebody but to really be able to crawl inside their skin almost in a very compassionate life-giving way to help them see things that they can’t see for themselves because they're inside the frame.
My life became dependent on being able to read the temperature of the room, being able to clearly read the nuances in people. Which is what makes me so brilliant at what I do today.
I have and, and I say this humbly, an incredibly developed intuition and sensibility about people and I know that it’s a direct result of growing up in the environment that I grew up which allows me to serve people as such a higher level, which I’m grateful for. I also developed a deep sense of compassion for people because I understand what suffering looks like when people want to do something different.
What’s fascinating about the anger - I didn’t have the luxury of growing up as a kid being angry. It was to dangerous in my household to be angry. It wasn’t until after I left and I began the deep internal healing work and forgiveness that I allowed myself just to experience the depths of rage that just got buried into my body. I’m grateful that I was surrounded by highly calibrated professionals who help me work through it in a very empowering way where I was able to release it and move it toward forgiveness rather than allow it to continue to fester and define me.
PHYLLIS SMITH: Wow! The word that keeps coming up from you is gratitude. So, with all that you’ve been through, is there anything, would you change it? Knowing what you know now and the work that you’re able to provide others to help them transform and find their dream is there, I’ve kind of answering your question, is there anything you would change?
FELICIA SEARCY: You know, there are moments when I think, “Oh God, wouldn’t it have been great to grow up with the Cleavers.” Right? Or The Brady Bunch. I was raised on The Brady Bunch, and The Partridge Family, but no. If you change any element of your history what’s the domino effect of that? So, knowing who I am today and grateful for it, again I say this humbly, grateful as all of us are this remarkable, magnificent being and the past that has led me to the degree of awareness that I’m grateful to be able to have today, and the ongoing support. I continue to keep myself in highly calibrated containers as I go deeper into my awareness with this infinite intelligence and my ability to really hear what’s happening inside of me in order to more effectively serve other people.
What I’m so grateful for is that I’m able to use my history with people who want to use theirs as an excuse to not go forward that I can say, “Look if I can do it anybody can do it.” There’s not a single person that I’ve talked to where it’s, you know what, and there are a lot of people who experience horrendous situations and any of us who rise out of that, you know, we can stand together and bear witness to what’s possible for all of us.
We can stand together and bear witness to what’s possible for all of us.
4 Keys to Living the Life You Love
PHYLLIS SMITH: Well, I’m so glad you’re sitting across from and I love when you come into the office and I get to see your beautiful face. You have an essence about you. This is not a put on. This is not just for this interview that you're rising to this. This warmth and this love that exudes without even saying the word love, I mean, your essence just shines. Felicia, you have a sense of peace about you, and wellness. You’re also very fit. You take care of your health. How important is that? Let’s start there with making the change and helping people move forward.
FELICIA SEARCY: Oh, it’s essential. One of the things that I help people understand is that when we talk about success and we talk about wealth, I help people understand that it’s a full spectrum.
I work with 4 key areas to living a life you love:
Your health and well-being
Your vocation - which is how you're sharing your gifts, your talents and your contribution
Your freedom in your checkbook and on your calendar.
So, when you think about your health and well-being, it’s the relationship with this most magnificent instrument that we’ve been given, which is our bodies. This is the vehicle by which we live and move and have being in this life. So, to the degree that we take care of this, the way we treat our bodies, is a reflection of the way we see ourselves and the way we treat ourselves. So, as you fall in love with your body and you treat it as you would a deep loving friend or you know, your deepest relationship, which by the way it is, then your body will serve you.
The other thing about your body is to realize is that it’s the interception between the physical and the invisible realm. I mean when you think about the information that this invisible realm, this intelligence is always communicating to us. How is it communicating it to us through our body? You know, you get a gut feeling. You just get a sense of something. If you don’t have a relationship with your body your shutting yourself off from that communication system from this infinite intelligence.
FELICIA SEARCY: That’s great. So, let me back up a little bit then because what I help people understand is that when we’re talking about full spectrum, it’s to understand that we are constantly creating our experience, correct? That we’re the only species on the planet that has the ability to consciously choose the images that we mentally rehearse. So, hang with me Phyllis cause I’m gonna wrap this back around to what you’re talking about in terms of permanence.
Start with the customer – find out what they want and give it to them.
Most people, number 1, don’t realize that. And if they do realize that, then they're allowing what’s happening outside here and history, past conditions, and current conditions to generate the internal images. Now, why this is important is because quantum physics is now proving what spiritual masters have taught throughout the ages is that what we predominantly, mentally rehearse then translates into the feeling in our body, which then sends out this magnetic signal to this invisible field, which then organizes according to the results that we are transmitting with our images. We give it the pattern, it organizes according to that pattern and creates our results.
Now, why this is important to what you’re talking about is that to the degree of our ability to really understand that’s how results are created. We become so committed to number 1- really tapping into that life force that’s seeking a greater expression by means of us which is your dream. We talk about permanency, all of this out here is malleable, it’s continually changing. The permanence is what I call the law - to understand our capacity to actually influence and create our results. Now can we stop everything? No. Can we use this to ensure that nothing bad ever happens to us? No, but what it does is that it allows us to realize that there is that and us that is bigger than any outside fact and condition.
When you begin to realize that we really do have this ability to consciously choose images, and you make a decision to start working with images that absolutely light you up, and you allow those to be your guiding force rather than the images of how do I protect myself. You come to trust something so much bigger than just your human capability and you understand that even though you have conditions, your conditions don’t have you. That’s then where this sense of peace and well being that you’re talking about comes in. That’s where the permanence, for me, that’s the permanence, that there is this power so much greater than me that is always calling me into a more expanded version of myself and when I learn to live from images that I love I’m learning and deepening my relationship with what’s real, true, and permanent.
You come to trust something so much bigger than just your human capability, and you understand that even though you have conditions, your conditions don’t have you .
Self-Awareness is Key to Turning Dreams into Reality
PHYLLIS SMITH: And self-awareness is the first step.
FELICIA SEARCY: Yes.
PHYLLIS SMITH: It’s like your 12-step program - why do people stand up and say, “Hi, my name is so and so. I’m an alcoholic. (or) I’m a drug addict.”? Because you have to first know what’s going on with you before you can actually make the change.
FELICIA SEARCY: Yeah, yeah, and let me be really clear that I came through the program called Al-Anon for family members of addicts. So one of the things that I help people understand is the most powerful tool is to notice what you're noticing. Your dream then gives you the comparative element, right? That you can develop self-awareness, but if there’s nothing to apply it to then it’s a concept, it’s an abstract. But when you have a dream that are images that are more expansive than your current life and here’s the real key to this: Your dream is not for the getting. Your dream is for who you grow into in the process. And so you begin to build out an image of the person who grew into this magnificent being that’s now a match for that more expanded image of life.
Your dream is not for the getting, your dream is for who you grow into in the process.
As you start building out an image and building out a relationship with that person, now you’re able to notice when you’re on or off in terms of with the person living this level of success, and the person living at this level of awareness. What would they be doing right now? What would they be thinking? If this condition happened how would they respond to it? Now you’ve got a comparative element. You have an image. You see who you are today, you see your habit of how you react to certain things in your world and as you develop your capacity to literally step back and observe. To notice what you’re noticing.
Then you learn how to do what I call the pattern interrupt where you interrupt the thought pattern that created the current result and you ask, “What do I want to know instead right now?” “Who do I want to be?” “How do I want to show up. The person that created this result - what’s the action that they took in this moment?” That’s a tool that nobody can ever take away from you, and it is not outside conditioned-based. It’s internally directed. When you think about it, that’s real freedom to be able to consciously choose in any given moment how you’re going to show up, who you’re going to be, what’s the action - as you have this dream that then becomes the container that then informs and defines that whole internal conversation.
When you think about it, that’s real freedom to be able to consciously choose in any given moment how you’re going to show up
Self-Worth is a Human Condition
PHYLLIS SMITH: How important is self-worth? Because I think one of the things that holds people back is they see it, they see Felicia’s all great and happy and isn’t she fabulous but I’ll never get there. But it really comes down to, I don’t deserve it. What kind of role does self-worth play in it, and what’s a good step to start taking now, today, to start building on that sense of self-worth?
FELICIA SEARCY: I love that question. I think a sense of undeserving, of unworthiness is the fundamental human illness that everything is stemmed back to that. I know it was for me. That feeling like I had to apologize for even taking up space on the planet.
Number 1 is to realize that it is a human condition and then to really start building an awareness of how you got here. You know what, you didn’t wake yourself up this morning. You can’t even take one breathe on your own. You didn’t put yourself here.
I’m going to borrow from an ancient text and some people may recognize where it comes from and this isn’t a matter of being religious. In all ancient texts there is truth. There’s a story about creation where this infinite energy, whatever you wanna call it, looked upon the void and said, "Let there be." It looked upon a void, and it saw something missing. What was missing? You. The only thing that could fill that void was you. And so, this creative intelligence wove you into existence from the only substance it has to use which is substance of itself which is love itself. That you were created from the very substance of love, and the more you come to know that you are here by divine appointment, and to understand that that sense of unworthiness, that’s just a habit. That somebody, and a very unskilled way programmed this into you, but it’s not reality. It’s not true. The more you’re able to be in awe of how you got to be here - if you think about the human body alone and the beauty and the elegance and the complexity of the human body - what energy would create something so magnificent as this human body that, by the way, we as human beings have not been able to replicate that, and then say, “Go, have a medial or unworthy life.” It just, it’s too much. I mean logically it’s too much of a disconnect.
So, one of the ways to help really grow a greater sense of worthiness in just be in awe of yourself and really to start interrupting the pattern, and surround yourself with people who are able to see you for who you really are, and understand that it is a process and it can be done. You can scrape away all those layers of lies and come down to what is true.
One of the ways to help grow a greater sense of worthiness is just be in awe of yourself.
What Would I Love?
PHYLLIS SMITH: When you wake up in the morning, and if you’re not feeling that sense of love and gratitude, something's gotta change. It does. The first thing is this awareness and this gratitude. I love that when you kind of look at the big picture and hone in on that it starts here. Then hone in on the fact that you’re even here on this planet, and you’re walking this earth, and your body - I’m always in awe of how the body is perfect. And you know, people who suffer from weight issues, for example, the body wants to do the right thing. It wants to do the right thing, it wants to eat the right things, and it will try to compensate, and it you just gotta allow it.
Felicia, we can talk all day long, and I would love to but unfortunately, we’ve run out of time. Give people what they can do the minute they stop listening or stop watching this video? What can they do right now today?
FELICIA SEARCY: Right now, today I encourage you to commit your life to living the most powerful reverent question that you can learn to live from which is, “What would I love?” Because when you learn to live from that question, what you’re doing is that you are understanding that love itself is seeking a richer, freer, fuller expression by means of you. When you learn to live from that question and build out a life that you love, not only are you blessed, but this is truly how you bring your greatest contribution to the body of humanity.
PHYLLIS SMITH: Beautiful. Thank you, thank you so much. It is such an honor to know you to have you a part of eWomenNetwork. Namaste - may the light in me honor the light in you.
FELICIA SEARCY: Right back at you Phyllis.
For close to 20 years, Felicia has worked with professionals, entrepreneurs and folks just like you who are seeking the spiritual side of success helping them accelerate their results as they create richer, more fulfilling lives. She is a featured speaker for the eWomenSpeakersNetwork and has shared the stage with such powerhouse industry leaders as Mary Morrissey.
Her purpose is her passion: To empower you to discover and live your best self as you live the life you love! Your Dream is Her Passion! She is thrilled by the results that people experience in their lives as they learn and apply the system she shares– and she is passionate about helping you create the results you want so you can live your dream life!