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Authentic Power with Ashley Bernardi

Meet Ashley Bernardi

Ashley Bernardi is the founder of powerhouse media relations firm Nardi Media. She works with corporations, brands, entrepreneurs, and nonprofits to obtain high-profile placements in broadcast, print, and online media. Trained as a journalist at CBS News, nationally syndicated program energyNOW! on Bloomberg, and Washington Post Live, she has a natural ear for a story and a journalist’s passion for research. The traumatic death of her father at a young age and diagnosis of Lyme Disease and postpartum depression after the birth of her third child deepened her passion for health, wellness, and spirituality. It taught her how to access her own authentic power to heal her life. She is a certified Life Designer and received her certificate in The Science of Well-Being from Yale University. In addition, Ashley hosts the award-winning podcast 2 Girls Talking. Ashely is also the author of the new powerful book, Authentic Power: Give Yourself Permission To Feel. The oldest child in a proud military family, Ashley was born in Schweinfurt, Germany, and has lived and worked in New York City and Washington, D.C. She currently resides in Northern Virginia with her family. Ashley is a frequently featured expert in the media, including Forbes, Great Day Washington, Good Day DC, and more.

Path to Self-Discovery

If you have ever struggled with not letting yourself feel your emotions, pushing down trauma, feelings that are uncomfortable, or putting on a mask of strength to hide your pain or grief, this conversation is for you. There are so many insightful takeaways from Ashley’s vulnerable journey of grief and healing from an illness that almost took her life. She noticed that she was caught in a wave of intense and messy feelings at the beginning of the pandemic that triggered old trauma and loss. Ashley decided to do something about this, and after an intuitive life coach session with yours truly, she realized that what wanted to be birthed was a book to help others learn to feel and heal through their own authentic power. Ashley set out to interview some of the top healers, physicians, luminaries, and leaders to dive into how we can all move through this time of greater uncertainty and fear with a greater sense of hope and real tools to experience your authentic feelings come out stronger. 

Give Yourself Permission

Ashley so poignantly shared that it will come out in other ways when you bury your trauma. This is what happened to her after years of people-pleasing, wearing a mask of ‘everything is fine’, hyper over achievement, and doing all the things to stay disconnected from her real feelings. On paper, it all looked good. Real good. Inside though, Ashley was a full-on disaster. She saw this play out in her workaholism, destructive relationship with alcohol and men, all while ignoring her feelings and trying her best to keep up with the world. Ashley Bernardi did this until her life came tumbling down after experiencing another double trauma — being diagnosed with a mysterious illness, soon realized was Lyme disease and postpartum depression. Her body felt like it was shutting down, between losing control of her bowels, losing too much weight, not digesting food, dizziness, feeling like she had the flu, and no control of her body. Ashley cried out to God for help and surrendered at a level she had never experienced before. Although bedridden, after this deep surrender, Ashley began tuning into her feelings and soon noticed that she felt better. Healing was happening because she was processing her feelings, not avoiding them. This powerful lesson is much of what inspired Ashley to write the book, Authentic Power: Give Yourself Permission To Feel to help others suffering from a lack of full permission to feel and express their emotions.

How to Heal

One of the key insights that Ashley Bernardi gleaned from this excruciating yet transformative experience was that there is no one-size-fits-all for healing. When you give yourself permission to feel, you tap into your own authentic power allowing for massive transformation. Her goal was to help others also going through challenging feelings to know it’s ok to take off the mask of strength and feel whatever comes up. One of the best ways to dive headfirst into your feelings, which for many of us, can feel like saying I want to take a walk in a landmine, is to get curious. Use the blessing of curiosity, which is one of the key components to being a coach, and the coaching work Ashley did in the Life Designer Coach Academy for coaching mastery, and look for the answers from within. Some of the questions to ask yourself are: Where is this emotion showing up in my body? And what might this feeling be telling me or showing me? 

Feel to Heal

We also talked about Ashley’s helpful FEEL framework, which she came up with organically when learning how to feel her emotions during her healing process. Here’s the FEEL overview, which we hope will help you as you move through whatever it is you are facing. 

F – Focus on your emotion, don’t avoid it!

E – Enter into that emotion rather than push it down.

E – Experience your emotions and feelings, no matter what they are. None are good, bad, right, or wrong. They will pass. 

L- Listen, Learn and Love that emotion back. Listen for what it’s telling you, learn what the lesson might be, and shower 

your emotion with love. 

Final Thoughts

I asked Ashley Bernardi how she finds time and space to feel remnants of grief, sadness, or whatever she might be feeling. She very wisely shared that she takes breaks throughout the day to pause, feel, and take 10 breaths to reset. You can always make time for yourself, and it’s imperative that you do so, too! She shares another great tip in her book, Authentic Power: Give Yourself Permission To Feel, from Dr. Jamie Hope, a dear friend and amazing ER physician, author, and leader. Dr. Hope talks about stressing hard and stressing soft. We’re meant to experience stress, and it’s about knowing how to give yourself what you need to deal with your stress, whether that might be throwing old dishes against a wall, hitting a ‘dammit doll’ (love that), punching your pillow. In the end, this is all about honoring you, your emotional landscape, and whatever feelings are here to be expressed. You, and your feelings, are sacred and the most important thing is to remember your authentic power and start by giving yourself permission to feel.

Sacred Connection

As always, this community is a sacred, safe place built on love and acceptance. It was created to help you evolve and expand into your highest self. Please share your wisdom, comments, and thoughts. I love hearing from you and learning how you are being your truest, you-est you. Please join us in our Facebook group The You-est You Community for Soul Seekers

Join host Julie Reisler, author and multi-time TEDx speaker, each week to learn how you can tap into your best self and become your You-est You to achieve inner peace, happiness, and success at a deeper level! Tune in to hear powerful, inspirational stories and expert insights from entrepreneurs, industry thought leaders, and extraordinary human beings that will help to transform your life. Julie also shares a-ha moments that have shaped her life and career and discusses key concepts from her book Get a PhD in YOU

Here’s to your being your you-est you!


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