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Overcoming Life’s Challenges with Joy Idries
My guest is Joy Idries from London, England. When I read her bio, I was so interested in it because she talks about some of the same things that happened to me. I don’t know how they’ve happened to her, but we’re going to find out when she tells us her stories. She’s been through struggle, fear, suffering, and pain. What excites me most is she’s figured it out, how to get beyond it and move into an area of abundance, clarity, happiness and living life the way that it was meant to be. She said she’s done it in a short period of time. I have a great belief in that because as you all know, I believe that everything that we do in life is a choice. Once we learn how to make that choice, we can move forward. She’s got a new book coming out called Joy Unleashed, describing how she healed decades of blocked emotions, trauma, chronic and life-threatening illness in an amazing two-day rapid turnaround. Joy Idries, it is my pleasure to welcome you here. Can you tell us about your story? How it started and how you’ve progressed and overcome these things in your life?
My story goes way back to being in the womb. It all started for me when I was about to be born and the background to that is it was at home birth to start with. My father was an alcoholic and my mother is stressed out. My mom already had two little ones before me. She wanted him to be with her at the birth. He hadn’t turned up right up to the last minute. When he did turn up, he was drunk. My grandmother was there. She was so angry about this that she hit him over the head with a frying pan. It wasn’t light. It was one of those heavy lead fryings. It sounds funny now. She knocked him out. She thought that she’d killed him because he went to conscious. My mother was in shock at the sight of that. The shock went through me. I felt completely disintegrated by this shock of sudden death as my mother understood it at the time. I felt that experience. That set the scene for what was to come later.
It was almost like a pattern that evolved over time about expecting life to be very dangerous and life-threatening. That’s how I experienced it. As a young girl, I was about somewhere between three and five. I haven’t quite placed the age. That was the next thing that I remember apart from my mother always being judgmental, criticizing and abusive and my father when he was drunk, he is quite physically abusive. One day I wanted to surprise my mom by making her a cake. She was somewhere else in the house. I was in the kitchen. I found the flour. I found the butter. I found the salt or whatever I’d seen her use, but I didn’t have a dish. I poured them on the chair. I started to pound it all together. It was going all over the place, one holy mess and then my mother turned up. She flew into this massive rage. She picked me up. She shook me like a rag doll. My head was going back and forth. She threw me down and split my neck open. I got it that the world was a dangerous place again. I got it reaffirmed that original sense. I had to go to the hospital. I had stitches and all of that.
What happened to me at that point, I came to the decision that I wasn’t allowed to have fun. I wasn’t allowed to be excited, play and to relax. I needed to work out a way to survive. I closed down myself. All my attention was on working out what people wanted and then doing it for them or being that for them. On the outside, there was fairly pleasant. My mother wanted me to achieve. I was achieving. I was the life and soul of the party as I was getting older and all of that, but I was completely out of touch with myself. I only got my value from other people. To be loved meant that people had to love me. I didn’t know how to love myself.
Coming from this place later on in life, when I was about fourteen, I was looking for attention. I had met this man at a swimming pool. I was fourteen. He was in his twenties somewhere. I wanted attention. I invited him for coffee when I was babysitting, not knowing what that meant, just wanting some attention. I want somebody to sit with me and watch TV with me or something. It didn’t work out that way. We were sitting there. The next minute he’s grabbed me, throw me to the floor, jumped on top of me, ripping my clothes off and I’m screaming at the top of my voice to attract the neighbors, but nobody came. Because I was screaming, he put his hands around my throat and he was squeezing so hard that I stopped being able to breathe. I felt for sure I was going to die. At that moment, I got the adrenaline rush, enough of power in me to push him off. I was able to escape with my life.
It didn’t finish with me pushing him off. There were some disgusting parts that he’s forced me to do, at least I saved my life. That left me scarred. I didn’t tell anyone. I pushed it down. I didn’t feel there was anyone to listen to me. My mother wasn’t ready to listen. She was too stressed out with their own stuff. My dad wasn’t there for me. There was no nobody else. I kept it inside of me for many years. Probably until I was in my twenties when I nonchalantly mentioned it to my mother. My mother didn’t want to take it any further. This was acting on my body bit by bit. I was still managing to get on with life somehow until I met my first husband. That ended up being an abusive relationship too, which you often find that there’s a pattern set.
It seems to repeat itself.The moment she moved out of suffering and found her joy. Click To Tweet
What happened with this man, he also tried to kill me first with knives, then with an electrical wire around my wrists while I was sleeping. He pushed it into the plug and switched it on, but it didn’t work by God’s will. One night, something made me open my eyes. I was sleeping, but something made me open my eyes. There was no sound. No nothing that would normally make you open your eyes. When I did open my eyes, I saw a hammer coming towards my head. I had enough time to reach up, grab it, managed to get away and I ran away. At that point, I ran as fast as my legs could take me. I’m so afraid that he was going to catch up with me. I ran and ran and I did manage to get away.
He did chase after me after that for days and weeks. There was a whole series of events where he kept turning up wherever I thought I was in a safe place. One time, he even kidnapped me. I was in the car. There was an accident. I didn’t know whether he had caused the accident or whether it had been caused by the car behind. I felt like the car had gone into an explosion. I even believed that maybe he’d put a bomb in there to finish us both off. He also had this tendency to want to commit suicide. He wanted to take me with him. I felt that a bomb had gone off. Everything went into slow motion. That was my saving because of the police, the ambulance and all of this. We got taken to the hospital. It was my way to escape.
As long as I was in the car, I was in real danger. That was following another incident where he was taking me on a drive through country lanes on the Russian roulette drive saying, “I’m going to go into the ongoing traffic. Whoever comes around the corner, we’re going to go straight into that.” I believe by God’s grace that I managed to get through these things. However, in later years, this was catching up with me. I met my second husband. For the first time in my life, I met someone who said to me, “I accept you the way you are.” They made me want to cry now. I had never heard it before. It had always been me trying to manipulate acceptance and love. I wasn’t starting to look at that anybody opened the way to me crying for seven years continuously.
There’s nothing wrong with that. You’re talking to somebody who was a crier. I’m crying with you.
Every day for seven years and so husband was tearing his hair out wondering what the heck is going on?
At least that he stuck with you for seven years trying to figure it out because there was a lot of men who walk away from their wives when they need them the most.
He’s such a treasure. We’d now been married for 34 years. I spent so much time in those years trying to analyze everything. I was coming from an empty place. I wasn’t connected to my heart and to my soul or who I was. I was trying to work things out in my head, analyze, analyze. Why am I crying? Then I think I’d found the answer and then that would give me some relief for a few days, then it would come back again. It’s like the reservoir got filled up again. Before that, my body started to start giving me messages. I developed chronic fatigue so I could hardly move. There’s so much pain. At one point, I was crawling from room to room to be able to do anything. Being in bed doesn’t relieve that. I also developed a life-threatening cancer. It was stage two when it was discovered. I ended up having a hysterectomy.
Did you have ovarian?
I had cervical cancer.
I lost my wife thirteen years ago to ovarian cancer. We were married for 35 years.
I remember you saying. I’ve lost my mother to cancer, my sister to cancer. I was seriously threatened with it. It’s another example I think of a pattern of something life-threatening coming towards me. I always seem to manage to survive somehow. With chronic fatigue, I was depressed. I had cancer, backache for about twenty years, serious back pain. Even when I had surgery for cancer and was declared free from cancer, I had acute pain from adhesions. I developed serious pain in the pelvic area for a long time. I came to this point where I was saying to myself and my body, “You’re not going anywhere until you sort this out.” It’s like it completely caved in by now. I got to the place where I was thinking, “I don’t want to commit suicide. I don’t believe in that.” I want to curl up in a corner, not speak to anybody and not do anything, just don’t engage, nothing. Then I came across this Healing Weekend that was happening in London. It costs far too much money. I didn’t want to spend that much on myself. I was so desperate like, “I’m going to try this and if this doesn’t work then I’ll go in the corner.” I did go to this weekend and the method that was being used there was in a journey and work, bodywork, breathwork using some NLP.
In that inner journey, I got to get in touch with the memory of the rape. In my imagination I was invited to come to completion, to do and say whatever needed to be said or done in order to complete. I had a conversation with the rapist, all the aspects that were involved in that, about feeling disgusted and feeling powerless and feeling like an object and all of these things. I also got to speak to my mom and dad who had felt hadn’t supported me and tell all of that. It brought up these other memories as well. The memory of when I was a child and had been abused. All of that was talked through but talk through from a place of being in touch with feelings. It wasn’t about blame. It was about having my feelings acknowledged. Feeling that I was powerless. One of the messages that came through to me from my inner wisdom because getting in touch with your body wisdom, you get some amazing insights that can transform things. One of them was nothing that happens to you on the outside, touches you on the inside. I understood that although I was feeling impure and defied and all of that. Inside, I’m not touched by that. I am pure. I am beautiful.
A lot of that has to do with your core expectations. One of your core expectations and how you think of yourself. You can shift those relatively easy when you know how. That’s what’s powerful.
Along with other insights that I had, something shifted in me. I came after that weekend completely cured of everything. I had no pain, no fatigue, and no depression. I felt a sense of peace inside of me that’s never left me since. I came after that jumping around, full of energy, like a tiger. I went into that weekend almost like wheelchair bound. I came out jumping around, dancing and singing. It was amazing the change around that happened. My son was ten at the time. He’d experienced me as this depressed, tired and chronically fatigued mother. He saw me like this. He’d said, “I like the new mommy.” It was so precious to me to hear those words and to know that from that point on we could have a completely different relationship. That was the miraculous turnaround happened. I was so wowed by that, that I decided I need to share this with the world. That was where my “WHY’ was born, where my mission came about. After that, I still spent maybe about a couple of years clearing everything else.Nothing that happens to you on the outside, touches you on the inside. Click To Tweet
Although I had the complete turnaround, there were other things I wanted to clear. I wanted to be completely cleared and completely in touch with my inner self. I’ve lost touch with who I was. There was a little girl inside who didn’t know how to get out, how to express herself, how to be even. A lot of people feeling like this at some time in their life. I was like a caged bird. I could see through the bars. Outside, I could see the grass and nature and the beautiful sky and the flowers, but I couldn’t reach them. I couldn’t touch them. I couldn’t feel them. I felt imprisoned. It’s funny because during one of these inner journeys, I found myself inside this cage, metaphorically, prison when I was shouting, “Help, let me out.” What happened was I had this image of God reaching down into the prison and lifted me up by the scruff of the neck and plunking me outside of the prison and going, “There you are.” It’s so easy and it changed everything.
Visualizing something like that is a powerful tool. A lot of the work that I do, I take people to places where they can do that. That’s part of what I do.
I love to do this. I love to help people to connect with their body wisdom and to open to that language of the soul, which is very often is a metaphor. One picture can change something so amazing in that one minute.
I tell people when I’m working with them to take their hand, either left or right, depending on what they use, what they’re prominent hand is. Put it to their temple and turn the bad switch off and turn the good switch on. That physical action of turning off negative and turning on positive is very positive in people’s lives. It’s amazing how it works. Everybody always thinks it sounds so corny, but it works. It does. I wonder sometimes if it has with people equating it to forgiveness or permission. Did you ever give yourself permission to forgive the other people, the rapist and the other things you want to forgive or did you forgive yourself? I’m always interested in that.
In the process that I underwent in that weekend, I did both. The process includes a guided script that helps you to come to that place. You’re being asked if you’re willing to forgive that person or those people. At the same time, you also have an interaction between the present you and the younger you. You’d come to an understanding between those two aspects of yourself and you find forgiveness. The present you forgives the younger you. The younger you forgives the present you for anything. There’s forgiveness all around. That’s powerful.
The other powerful part of it is that journey of going back and going forward. Coming back to the place of the here and now because when you go back and you look at your life. I had some things happen in my life. My parents, when I told them things, they never believed me. My dad was an alcoholic, but he was a functioning alcoholic. He never missed a day at work. Monday through Friday, he was fine. Come Friday night, he drank and drank until Sunday night when he went to sleep. He was functional. My mother was very domineering. She was German. It was her way or the highway. That was what I was dealing with. They gave their children no expectations. They didn’t set any parameters. I literally could do everything and anything I wanted to do from the time that I was young.
I had to deal with that. I had to figure out everything on my own. The thing that I want to ask you about is for me, when I was going through this at nine years old, I went to a mountain top. I laid on my back and had a conversation with God. I heard a voice in me that said, “Your job is to be okay,” because that built faith in me. I believed in that voice. I was so scared when I heard it because I thought, “Am I going crazy? Am I nuts? What is this voice I keep hearing out of my inner self?” I did something that you did later. I did it very early. I’m always thankful and in wonderment how at nine years old I learned to listen to my inner voice and have it guide me because it’s what has guided me all through my life. I get it. I understand. When you do that, it is so powerful and there’s something that builds faith in you because I believed in that voice from that point on.
When you went to that event and you had that conversation with your inner self, you heard answers that came from you that changed everything. That’s a lot of what faith is about is in the belief in yourself and in a higher power. One of my big things with people is you can’t change events around you. You can only control yourself. It’s how you manage everything. It’s how you learn how to manage it that makes all the difference in our lives. That’s why managing your expectations is so important. It took me a lot of years. I’m going to be 72. It wasn’t until I was 63 that I even started thinking about this when I lost my wife to ovarian cancer because I fell apart. I laid on my back again in my ranch and had this conversation with God. This is what I heard from my inner self again, “I’ve given you all the tools, you need to use them.” That’s what awakened me. It amazes me. I love hearing your story about that.
I love also the journeys that I went because that’s when you get in touch with divine messages, inspiration, insights and understandings much deeper than what you can get through your mind or trying to think something through. They change something so dramatically. I did go back to the room experience and had a journey about that as well to come to a resolution. Knowing that that was like one of the beginnings and as you say, setting the expectation. The world is threatening. In that journey, I had an experience where God said, “You felt disintegrated by the shock. The shock waves made you feel disintegrated, but I put you back together again.” I experienced myself being brought back together again. It’s like a bomb setting something up, boom. In slow motion, all comes back together again, back to the original.
That’s how faith works. It’s knowing that everything is going to be okay in the end. We’re on this journey called life. I’m a Vietnam veteran. I was in the Marine Corps, the US Marines. I could have let that destroy me. I think of all the things in life that I went through. Having the faith and knowing that God had a plan for me and that everything was going to be all right in the end, lets you live life. When I look back on my life, I see how many far greater joys that I’ve had versus the challenges that I’ve had. It’s so amazing to me because the challenges are what teaches us the most. How we’re challenged and how we get through teaches us our greatest lessons in life. We can take those and move forward fearlessly. It’s a beautiful journey when we let it. Succumb to it, surrender to it and let it happen.
That’s happened to me because it’s brought me to a place of appreciating where I am now. The greatest thing can’t have your greatest joy. It’s given me heights of joy that maybe I wouldn’t have reached if I’d just lived a level, mundane life. I’m so in appreciation of that.
A lot of people do though. They live in that space. They don’t really live, they just exist. Existing is not what God has intended for us. God’s expectation of man was for his greatness. The quarrel could be in that what is greatness because some people equate it with money. Some people equate it with love, some people equate with artistic abilities and all kinds of different things. What is your greatness? We don’t know. It’s our job to keep pursuing whatever it is that we’re supposed to pursue. We don’t ever know. I go to events and I’ll talk to somebody and they’ll come and talk to me. I’ll often think I may have saved that person’s life or change their life for the better. That is my greatest gift to man. That’s what I believe God put me on this Earth for. I’ve had money. I’ve had tons of it and I’ve had none of it. I’ve been this dirt poor as poor could be and I’ve been as wealthy could be, but none of it matters. It’s the greatest joy of fulfilling yourself and what you think your destiny and what you think that you’re supposed to be doing here. Your purpose on Earth, your why am I here?
Nothing on the outside matters. I remember reading a book once where this was mystic and he said, “I don’t mind if I ride the steed of difficulty on the steed of ease,” because it’s all one. It’s not about that. It’s not about what’s happening on the outside. Our orientation on the inside and finding the joy and finding the treasures in everything that happens or even what it doesn’t happen.
Whether our seasoning, our aging, and our wisdom have a lot to do with how we start to process it and look at it. I look around and I see so many young people now traveling and doing the things that they want, that makes them happy. I have some friends that are traveling the world right now. One of the reasons they’re afforded that ability now is because of the internet. They have an internet business that pays them enough to survive wherever they want to travel. They have literally been traveling around the world now for about six or eight months. I keep up with their experiences on Instagram and stuff. They have learned so much from so many other cultures, which makes me think about the people that don’t ever experience traveling outside of their community where they were raised. I learned so much when I’m out on the road and I meet people and I talk to people.A lot of people don't really live, they just exist. Click To Tweet
I always love traveling as well, not always. I’m an adventurer. Some years I trained as a teacher of English as a foreign language and traveled around Europe and places. Getting to know the different coaches and my husband is from Sudan as well, so it’s completely different. Going there and be amongst the normal people rather than being in a hotel somewhere and you’re cut off. I love being amongst the people as they are native to their country.
I’m very much that way too. I would rather stay at a place where I could meet lots of people than in a hotel where you sit. I don’t like going to tourist spots. I like going to where the people live and congregate and learning about them and all that.
Being invited to a meal in a family is really so nice.
What’s going on in your life now? The new book is coming out. Tell us about that.
It’s a memoir of everything that’s happened to me and how I’ve come through it. It’s my journey but it’s also self-help. There are lots of tips, techniques, exercises, and processes that people can follow to help release their own stuff, their own struggles and their own trauma. The stories that I’ve been talking about, it will all be in the book when it’s released. It is about how we can move from struggle, pain, illness and all of this. We can unleash. I was talking about feeling that I was caged, a caged bird. Letting ourselves free. We can set ourselves free like this. It doesn’t have to be a little bit here, a little bit there. It can be like an all-out, “I’m free,” and stay that way. Those expectations get reset by having that inner dialogue. Awakened consciousness.
We’re constantly resetting our expectations. If you’ll stop and think about it, we have literally hundreds of thousands of expectations every day because there’s nothing that we do without expectation because this is what my belief is that we have epiphanies in our head. Those epiphanies remain thoughts in our head unless we start to expect. With when it becomes an expectation, the only thing that moves epiphanies and expectations into action is taking the action. Other than that, it stays in our head and we do nothing with them. We have them literally thousands of it. There are a lot of therapists in the United States should tell their patients, do not have expectations, expect nothing. Shakespeare wrote about it. We have tons of people who say, “I don’t have expectations.” It’s impossible. The way that I prove it is I tell my audiences, “Take your right hand and put it over your mouth and take your left hand and put it over your nose and they’ll go, “I couldn’t breathe.” The expectation is that you need air to breathe and that starts at birth. For mankind, think of all the things that man has created and thought of. They all started with an expectation. It started with an epiphany and an expectation to move them forward.
Faith is an expectation. It’s an expectation in the kindness of the Divine that we can trust.
It’s the seed that God put in each and every person, regardless of race and religion. They have no biases. Our expectations are solely ours. No one can take them away from us. No one can change them when we know how to master them. That’s why often advertisers, even churches, religions and government try to manipulate our expectations because they want to control. It’s a control mechanism that the outside world uses to control individuals. God planted that seed in us for our greatness. When we start to follow it, amazing things happen in our lives. You and I are living proof of it. It’s amazing what can happen.
The one that gets broken just needs to be cleaned up.
I’m big on management. People have choices they can make. Everything is based in choice and either they can choose to manage their expectations or they can let other people do it for them. When they let other people do it for them, they give away control of what was meant or how their life was meant to live. It’s as simple as that. I love that you’ve overcome so much. That you’ve raised your consciousness to a level of understanding. Now, you’re starting to help other people. When you start to other people is when the real satisfaction is going to come for you.
I love when somebody is transformed. This lady who came to me in tears. She was saying that her husband kept calling her stupid, “You’re stupid.” She believed it. Each time that he said it, she would feel it like a dagger going in or wound happening. It was devastating her and ruining her life. We did an inner journey work on this. She came to understand that whenever he said it, it was coming from him. She didn’t need to take it on board because she is something that’s much more magnificent than that. She’s not stupid at all. She’s been buying into that story and expecting to be stupid because it’s been competent at her for so long. She really got that. Shortly after that, he was still doing it for a while. She would be going, “That’s your point of view. It’s not my point of view.” It was going straight past her. It wasn’t hitting home. He didn’t have something to bounce the ball off. We did a very short time. He stopped doing it. Their relationship got much better. It improved. She was in touch with her own self-worth and self-confidence. It resonated at work.
At work, she was being bullied at work as well. She attracted this bullying both within the home and at work. She started to be more assertive and speak up for herself. She created a new position for herself. She was so wowed by the work that we were doing that she decided she needed to bring mindfulness and meditation into the workplace. This is a multinational corporation that is very geeky, very nerdy and things like that, but they took it on board. She became this person who was delivering mindfulness and meditation throughout the company internationally. She was even recognized by the government in this country for her contribution in the workplace to this. She completely changed things around. From being somebody who is being bullied at work because she was weak and meek to being this powerful pioneer of something that you would never imagine would ever happen in the company like that. It was so amazing to watch.
To me, that’s the power of expectation. I do a lot of work with labeling because so many people label people. It’s another form of control. They try to control people through their labels. There’s a lot of work to do in that area. Working with corporations with that, there are so many things that corporations can incorporate out of the things that people like you and I teach because it’s a microcosm of society in the workplace of how things function. When I go and talk about expectations in there and about corporate expectations, I always started with corporations have a tremendous value placed on financial expectations, but they fail to have personal expectations for their employees or their management teams and all that.
If you think about it, we use expectations in so many areas. When we start talking about personal expectations, they try to shun them and put them aside and say they don’t matter and all that. That’s another area that I get into. That’s what I find interesting with you and I, the more we talk, the more we find that we’re so akin to each other. We think so alike on so many things. It’s great. I’m glad that we’ve connected. I hope that we can continue. Can you tell the audience how they can get ahold of you and where they can get ahold of you?
My work is about transformation so appropriately my website is called TrulyTransformational.co.uk. Also, my Facebook page is called Truly Transformational. You can find me in either of those places. I’m on LinkedIn as Joy Idries. I actually have changed the name of the book from Joy Unleashed to Goodbye Suffering, Hello Joy. If they go to TrulyTransformational.co.uk/goodbye-suffering-hello-joy, then they’ll be able to register to be notified of the book when it launches. We’ll be probably doing some special gifts and things to make that fly nicely.
Let me know so I can let our audience know when it launches. We’ll do that and help you any way we can. It’s been a pleasure, Joy. I’ll tell you what, you and I have got to stay connected. I’ve got to come down to London and meet you. Thank you for being on. ExpectationTherapy.com is my website. I’m on all the social media sites and all that. Thank you.
It was so lovely. Thank you.
- Joy Idries
- Truly Transformational – Facebook
- Joy Idries – LinkedIn
About Joy Idries
Joy certainly knows from personal experience what it is like to live in struggle, fear, suffering, and pain. It was the story of her life until one-day things changed forever.
In her forthcoming book, ‘Goodbye Suffering Hello Joy”’, Joy Idries describes how she healed from decades of chronic and life-threatening illness, blocked emotions and trauma in just one miraculous weekend. The moment she moved out of suffering and found her joy was when her ‘WHY’ was born. She is now on a mission to help liberate 1 million people from their suffering around the world and to awaken them to the awareness that they are much bigger than anything that happens to them. She teaches that whatever happens there is always the potential to live joyfully each and every day of your life.
Joy’s deep experiential wisdom and expertise as an inner journey facilitator and spiritual teacher serve perfectly in enabling others to create a radical and lasting shift for themselves. Miracles have been known to happen and often do!
She helps to reignite our inner child-like curiosity and invites you to embrace life as one big delightful Divine abundant adventure.
You can find her at http://TrulyTransformational.co.uk or join her Facebook community at https://www.facebook.com/groups/TrulyTransformational/
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