It is said that the most crucial human development takes place in our first seven years, when the brain is rapidly developing its mapping system.
So, regardless of how wise we may be years later as an adult, healing very often means the tricky task of unravelling those early years of trauma.
Yet one woman took on the mission to turn her life around from suicidal thoughts to loving herself – a journey she now shares with others.
By exploring different strategies, Lisa Cybaniak overcame a decade of child abuse that left her feeling alone and stigmatised from what she had endured.
Having founded her own business, Life Like You Mean It, Lisa now shares those strategies with others on a quest to conquer their demons.
Speaking exclusively to Uspire, Lisa revealed how the project came about and the tools she uses to pass on all that she has learned to her clients.
Lisa said: “Back in 2016, I was a very unhappy secondary school science teacher, looking for options to build a happier, more fulfilled life.
“My husband and I brainstormed options. I could be a travel blogger and get all our holidays compensated – would that not be grand? While that would be a tremendously exotic life, it would not allow me to help others in the way I feel I was born to do.”
Lisa continued: “After much debate, I decided to start a blog about the strategies I used to overcome 10 years of child abuse. These are all the things that worked for me 20 years ago to turn a corner from being suicidal to loving myself.
“These techniques, which I still use today, include Socratic questioning, meditation, yoga, breathing techniques, Reiki, and shifting the way I view experiences.”
Socratic questioning is named after Greek philosopher Socrates, who is credited as being the first moral philosopher of the Western ethical tradition of thought.
It is a form of disciplined questioning based on the foundation that thinking has logic. The practice encourages people to question underlying thoughts in many ways such as exploring complex ideas, getting to the truth of things, opening up issues and problems, uncovering assumptions, and distinguishing what we know from what we do not know.
Using this myriad of self-help work, Lisa’s first blog – named Victim to Survivor – had a remarkable response with many people resonating with her child abuse experience.
Lisa continued: “The thought of us each suffering in great pain when we could have spoken up to one another and been a great source of support, infuriated me. It angered me that the stigma of being abused prevented us from knowing that we were not alone.
“Very quickly it turned into a mission to shed the stigma of being abused by breaking my silence. I started appearing on podcasts, magazines, newspapers, and radio shows.
“My blog turned into a full-fledged business dedicated to helping others push past their obstacles to build the life they deserve.”
Following the success of her blog, and the demand for self-help content, Lisa began developing a three-month coaching programme, called Survivor to Warrior.
The course was created with the goal of walking survivors through steps to shift their perspective, outlook, and experience, regardless of what they had experienced in life.
Lisa added: “Becoming a qualified NLP practitioner, I incorporated this into the programme, allowing for a deeper result in shifting old belief patterns.
“I also offer NLP sessions on their own, with many of my clients now being those who recognise that they are not where they want to be, and despite all their efforts, just cannot seem to make it over that hurdle. They come to me as they know that I have overcome my own tremendous hurdle, and are confident I can help them do the same.”
NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) is a practice that promotes the idea there is a connection between neurological processes, the language we use, and the behavioural patterns which follow. By changing the way that we talk and view past events, it is believed people can change the way that they think and take control of the mind.
Due to the popularity of Lisa’s teachings, she soon began evolving her business, creating a variety of courses including Moving Forward after Abuse; Anxiety to Action; Becoming Fulfilled and Satisfied in Life; Manifest Like a Boss; and Creating Vision Boards that Work.
She also went on to release a podcast, which is listened to in over 70 countries.
Lisa told us: “I now release two episodes a week. One is a solo episode, featuring me outlining the lessons I have learned throughout the years. Currently I am airing my spiritual series, focusing on my spiritual growth and its impact on my healing journey.
“The other episode is an interview with dynamic guests sharing the obstacles they faced and how they overcame them, giving the audience their top tips along the way. Guest have shared everything from overcoming anorexia, domestic abuse, and mental illness.”
Lisa, who is striving to reach 1million women by 2021 to realise the control they have in their lives, is adamant that her past does not define her present.
She said: “My story is not about my abuse. It is about the shifts I have made in my life to choose to walk along this path; to be happy and fulfilled; to love and accept myself.
“Life is full of choice. I once chose to live in darkness, a victim. Understanding the control that I have, in how I choose to act, react and think, allows me to create a different life. And that is what I do every single day.”
As Lisa continues on her crusade to help others reclaim the power within them, she has also written a book, Survivor to Warrior: You Can Change Your Life.
Lisa concluded: “I sat down to write it initially 20 years ago! Back then, I had not shifted my perspective and mindset, so the idea of the book was all about the abuse.”
Having never spoken about the past in detail, the book began as a therapy session giving her the voice she felt she never had. However, something about the process did not feel right and so Lisa set the manuscript down until she felt inspired again – 10 years later.
Yet a decade later, something still did not resonate, and it was cast aside for another 10 years. It was only in August 2018, that Lisa had an epiphany on her third attempt.
She added: “I realised I had been trying to write a book about my abuse, but I am no longer defined by my abuse. I do not need this platform in order to feel that I have a voice. I had evolved, and so also must my book.
“Sitting down for the third time, I shifted my perspective by writing about how I have become who I am today – all the strategies I use and spiritual awakenings I have had.
“I broke them down into tangible bites so that others have a guide to begin to do the same. That felt right! And, within the year it was published.”
To kickstart your awakening, click here: Survivor to Warrior: You Can Change Your Life.