Emily Levenson kicks my ass. Regularly. And I pay her good money to do it.
She’s a business coach, health coach, and amazing chef. I pay her for the business part, and she also helped us figure out that Emma has a gluten intolerance. I know about her good cooking because she tends to hand out snacks wherever she goes.
But back to the ass kicking.
Emily is one of those women who can spot bullshit from a mile away, and she doesn’t tolerate it. She has a gift for calling you out with a smile on your face; I tend to avoid her when I know I’m not ready to hear hard truths.
I have loads of admiration for Emily, and I’m thrilled to learn more about what makes her tick in today’s happiness interview.
What makes you happy?
Helping others. Meeting new people. Writing. Creative expression. Rocking out to my favorite songs. Spending time with my family. Amazing shoes. Cooking. Creating. Loving. Making other people happy. Reading. Taking long, hot showers. Naps. Being with other happy people. Sending and receiving snail mail. Sleeping in. The smell of fresh bread. And then eating said fresh bread straight out of the oven. Pretty much the little things in life.
How and when did you figure that out?
I think I really started to understand what made me happy after coming out of the most intensely UNhappy period of my life. I was stuck in a job that made me absolutely miserable, my health had deteriorated to the point where I had daily migraines, weekly cold sores, and intense jaw pain. And I was in a car accident that had left me with a sciatic nerve in my back. Pretty much anything that could have gone wrong at that time, did.
Taking stock on my life (and health) forced me to make some tough decisions. I quit my job, completely changed my diet, and did everything I could to surround myself with positive people and energy. Looking back, it was the best thing that could have ever happened to me.
How do you incorporate what makes you happy into your life more?
At the end of the day, if I am helping someone, connecting with a new (or old) friend, or just doing something creative, my heart is happy. When I don’t feel that way, I look at the reasons for doing it and adjust accordingly.
It also helps that I am my own boss, so I have the ability to add in the things that make me happy and light me up whenever I can. I have created multiple businesses with that in mind.
Are there any “shoulds” you’ve had to let go of in order to pursue your happiness?
I think the biggest “should” was around how my life was supposed to look.
As a child, I decided that I was going to be married by 26, have my first child at 28, and second child at 30. I was going to be a Therapist in a private practice. When things didn’t happen according to that schedule, I felt a lot of guilt and shame.
I also had to let go a lot of “shoulds” around how my body worked. I should be healthier… I should be able to get pregnant easily…. I should be a better example of health eating // living // breathing…
Once I could just accept the journey for what it was, and learn whatever I could along the way, I became much happier and a much more pleasant person to be around.
You can get to know Emily better at emilylevenson.com.
If you enjoyed this interview, checkout the rest of our interviews with happy people.