A mind once stretched by a new idea never returns to its original dimensions. While it’s OK to change your mind, it’s also OK to allow your mind to be expanded and see some growth within your own self-image. You can allow a bigger vision of who you could be and how you might serve by listening to your intuition.
My friend Erica Chidi allowed herself to be guided by intuition and pulled towards something that felt empowering to her. She expanded her idea of what life could look like and now helps women thrive in their bodies at every stage of their lives by empowering them when dealing with medical professionals.
In this episode, I’m sharing how women tend to not have all the information that would be helpful to them regarding their bodies, and how Erica decided to do something about that. Hear the work she does to empower women to gain a deeper understanding of their bodies and how to acquire unbiased, science-backed information to become better healthcare consumers.
It’s okay to change your mind. This week, the fourth week of Women’s History Month, Erica Chidi shows us it’s okay to expand your mind. A mind once stretched by a new idea never returns to its original dimensions. I’m going to teach you or share with you the story of my friend, Erica Chidi, a woman born to a Nigerian doctor and nurse who expanded her idea of what her life could look like. We’re going to find out how she’s been guided by intuition to expand our own awareness of our bodies and how they work. Let’s get going.
Welcome to the Unlock Your Life podcast, a podcast for highly successful visionary women who want more out of life. If you feel that ache of unfulfillment in your soul, you’re in the right place sis. Join life mastery consultant Lori A. Harris as she teaches you how to stop living for others and finally put yourself first. Let’s dive into today’s show.
So I think you know by now, I love being a woman. I love being in the company of other women, and I love to see women shine. Back in 2018, I had the honor and the opportunity to become a member of a women’s organization in Los Angeles known as The Wing. It was a co-working space, but they also provided opportunities for networking and exploration of all kinds. I read more books by more women authors in the year and a half that I was a member than I had in a very long time. I loved being a member of The Wing.
One of the things I loved most about it was the women that I met there and the quality of friendships that I formed. I met Erica Chidi at The Wing. We used to attend several events together, and she hosted and moderated events that I found very educational and uplifting.
Eventually we got together outside of The Wing, and I learned more about her. I learned that she was born to, her father was a doctor and her mother was a nurse. She was very accustomed to being around talk of the body and how the body works. She’s comfortable with it.
I think we’re all familiar with this stereotype of the hyper competitive, hardworking immigrant. I think that in Erica’s family, it wasn’t uncommon for them to expect her to follow in her family’s footsteps of a medical career, but Erica took a different direction. She has a BA degree in visual art history and media and communications.
She also studied for a year at the Christina Martin School of Food and Wine in South Africa, a culinary program. This program was designed that students would complete three years of study in one year. So she basically went to school every day for 345 days with only 20 days off. She learned all the things about culinary skills and design and food because she’s a foodie. She loves food.
You would think that okay so she’s gonna go in that direction, but she worked for over a decade as a doula. Then that led her to become the co-founder and CEO of LOOM, a health education company. What she noticed in her work as a doula and at LOOM was that there was a deficit in the way we learn about the function of our bodies and how our bodies work.
Women, and people in general, tend to not have all the information that would be helpful to them in their body functions. So she thought we need to do something about this. She’d like to shift the culture around reproductive health and change it from what we know to be kind of paternalistic, kind of patriarchal framework that people are accustomed to dealing with when they go into a medical facility.
So she used her background as a doula, her background of being in the health space to build a business, and her business was called LOOM. It still operates here in Los Angeles today, but she’s expanded it.
I’m so proud to tell you that Erica is one of a handful of Black women who has successfully went through the venture capital route. She raised $3 million in a round of seed funding to enable LOOM to go beyond what they were doing at their brick and mortar storefront to offer a whole new digital product and a platform to help people learn about their own sexual and reproductive health and wellbeing. It’s launched already, and it’s doing great work.
Besides that, she’s also launched into the world the first trauma informed symptom checker. So think about it. Rather than going to WebMD, you could go to LOOM and learn about the symptoms that you’re experiencing from a digital platform that’s evidence based, comes from care, and really does it with feeling because they care about your overall wellbeing.
So she’s taken LOOM from a company that generally was working with sex, childbirth, and periods, and is now expanding it to help us learn more about how our bodies work. She secured an investment in three months in her company to give people access to more support around their bodies and how they work. So she’s helping us to become more aware of the functions of our bodies, and how we can be empowered when we are dealing with medical professionals. So she is working to create a digital product that is trauma informed and evidence based.
Why does that matter? Because oftentimes we’ve had experiences that land in our body and leave emotional scars and marks upon our body. If we’re dealt with in an uneducated, insensitive way, a professional has potential for doing more harm. So she’s helping us to be better consumers, better health care recipients, to get better care for ourselves. So she is helping us to acquire unbiased, science backed information.
Imagine living in a world where women can understand and thrive in their bodies in every stage of our lives. We are sensual beings. We have more going on with us in our sexual health than just our reproductive organs. There are the issues that go through the continuum of our life from fertility and birth control, pregnancy and birth, periods and menopause, miscarriage and abortion, sex and pleasure. All of these experiences can live within one body.
Erica and her business partner has come together to bring information to us that serves a body that is having all these experiences rather than compartmentalizing them or keeping them secret for women. So I love what she’s doing it, and I love how she’s doing.
It is interesting to me that Erica allowed herself to be guided by her intuition and pull towards something that feels really good to her. That feels empowering to her and is a form of service.
Here’s what Erika had to say about the product that she’s creating. “We are looking to support women, and BIPOC people with access to education, support around whether they want to have a child or not have a child. We want to build a project that is emotionally agile and delivers literacy in a way that can exist inside of the product and outside of the center. We want it to become part of people’s lifestyle, not just another online class that you’re taking. When women have a deeper understanding of how their body works, they feel empowered throughout their life.”
What would it feel like to have a deep understanding of your bodily functions that you could have a partnership with your own health professional and be spoken to and interact with your medical team in a way that’s respectful and nurturing? This is what Erica is building for us and helping us to create in the world.
I know that all of my listeners are people who love to serve, who aspire to make the world a better place. Sometimes we get involved in careers or places of work, that can kind of feel restrictive. That can kind of feel like we’re in a rut. Erica has lived an expansive life such that she’s been a doula. She’s a book author. She’s an entrepreneur’ She’s a startup founder. She’s done all of these things because she allows herself to be guided by her intuition.
Intuition is one of our six mental faculties. In some ways, it could be considered to be the most important one of all. It is the one that can come to our aid when all others seem to be silent and have gone away. This is the one that when we’re most closely connected to it, we feel a connection to the infinite. Infinite consciousness, infinite intelligence, and we build our own awareness.
While it’s not easy to be agile and free-thinking and be willing to move, Erica speaks about noticing what’s living within her body and makes a distinction between discomfort and frustration. When she feels like it’s time to move, she’s listening to the signals that she’s getting from her body, and she’s going toward the thing that is going to allow her to grow and expand. That’s why she’s built this life that is not only in service to the world, but is in service to her own personal, internal flame that she’s following and being guided by. It’s a beautiful thing. We all benefit from that.
So I ask you, where is the flame within you? Is there a spark that seeks to be ignited? Is there something that you would love to build? You can start by just writing it down. Oftentimes, these really expansive, wonderful ideas start on a piece of scratch paper or a napkin or in the shower. Listen to your intuition. Listen to your ideas and allow yourself to be guided.
Sometimes our intuition speaks to us like a still small voice. It can come to us like a feather, like a little bit of a tickle. It’s an indication it’s time to move. If you don’t respond to that tickle, it might get a little bit more forceful. This voice of life that wants to come forward from you. So you don’t respond to the tickle, it might give you a shove. If you don’t respond to that shove, you could get hit by a Mack truck.
When we don’t respond to the voice of life that wants to live within us, that little spark that’s seeking to be born, then it can show up as big smack up against our head and say “Hey, it’s time to move.” You can take it with a tickle, or you can take it by a Mack truck. But in order for us to live our lives, we’re going to be pulled by a vision or push by pain. Erica is a person who allows herself to celebrate life and be pulled by a vision.
So this is episode 38 of the Unlock Your Life podcast. It’s been a pleasure speaking with you this week. I’ll remind you that a mind once stretched by a new idea never returns to its original dimensions. While it’s okay to change your mind, it’s also okay to allow your mind to be expanded. To allow you yourself to see some growth within your own self-image, and to allow a bigger vision of who you could be and how you might serve.
If you’d like some help with figuring out how to listen to that own still small voice, you can go to my website. I’d love to help you with forming the questions that will come up for you to create a vision for a life that you absolutely love living and could probably have some good in it for other people too.
Go to my website. It’s loriaharris.com/chat. I’ve done hundreds of sessions with people. I’ve helped them to discover that spark within them and get them started with at least one action step that they can take that will lead them forward to living a life that they absolutely love living. I’d love to hear from you. Go to loriaharris.com/chat. Let’s get together and do a breakthrough session.
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Thanks for listening to this episode of the Unlock Your Life podcast. If you want more information on how you can transform your life and do it quickly, visit loriaharris.com. See it on the next episode of the Unlock Your Life podcast.