Our next Rising Woman is the delightful Jen Blackstock. I have been following Jen online and listening to her podcast for a couple of years. What I love about her is her rawness and vulnerability. She shares herself so openly with grace and is so real about her ups and downs on this journey called life. Her authenticity leaves so much space for acceptance and presence. Enjoy her story here...
Who are you and what do you do for a living?
I am Jen Blackstock, founder and owner of The Unbridled Life. I began the first iteration of my business in 2008 after I left a job as a corporate finance executive. I'm currently a writer, healer, and embodiment & wealth coach. I own a studio in Carlsbad, CA where I see my private clients and host transformative events for my clients and other healers.
Tell me about your family, if applicable.
I grew up on a 10 acre farm in New Jersey. My grandfathers were both war heroes which greatly impacted how all of the members of our family showed up in the world. My parents were- and still are!- entrepreneurs and very active in their local communities, encouraging us to be as well. My sister and I went to a private all-girls school where we were taught from an early age that gender doesn't matter and we can achieve anything we set our hearts and mind to. My entire family are entrepreneurs, head strong and dedicated to being change-makers in the world.
What is your story?
I think this alone could take up and entire book and the previous two questions answer much of the history. In 2007 I began to get sick and the doctors couldn't figure out why. I've had Lyme's disease since I was 11 years old (with Bells Palsy and joint pain) but when this happened, the doctors didn't think it was my Lymes. I went from specialist to specialist with no diagnosis until one day, I walked into a yoga class and my life changed forever. I eventually left my career in corporate to heal which led me on the path to becoming a healer myself. I began as a yoga teacher, moved into massage the CranioSacral Therapy and more recently transitioned my work into what it looks like today. With my dual Bachelor's degrees in Economics and Classical Mythology, I'm passionate about how our body, Wealth & spirituality intertwine.
What have you overcome to get where you are today?
The biggest obstacle for me has been in my body/ health and in my finances- which I believe are inter-related. From being sick at a young age to healing my body, I've had to overcome a paralyzed face, a body that sometimes can't move how I want it to, and struggles with weight over the years. Also coming from a line of entrepreneurs, financial struggles have always been a part of the Blackstock story- bankruptcy, bad business deals, etc- and so much of my work has been to clear not just my story, but the family story around this as well.
What has been your greatest struggle in life?
See above :) I'd say my darkest moment- declaring bankruptcy in 2010 and shutting down my first business- was also one of the most empowering acts of my life.
Did you ever feel like giving up? When you felt like giving up, what did you do?
Absolutely! I think most entrepreneurs have the feeling of giving up often- even when things are going well. I believe this path isn't for the faint of heart and it's a constant process of dying and being reborn to new versions of ourselves. So whenever I feel like giving up, I look deeper and ask "What part of me is ready to die in this feeling?" And then work from that place to recommit again and again to this path.
What are some of the tools and resources you have used to work through and overcome those struggles? (books, counselors, workshops, programs, coaches, etc.)
Yoga (Forest and Shiva Rea)
Esalen massage training
Visionary and BioDynamic CranioSacral Therapy
Priestess path trainings
And a lot more!
What are your gifts and how did you discover them?
I've been told my biggest gift is that I can see people into the core of who they are, and can hold the space for them to get totally naked with themselves to see it as well. I see patterns clearly and the path out of them, guiding clients through their own Heroine's Journey to find their truth- and bring it forward.
Who in life do you rely on when you're struggling? Who keeps you uplifted and on your path?
My husband is my rock and best friend, and really is my best friend. I speak with my parents regularly about pretty much everything and they are my trusted advisors in so many areas. My horse Oliver, dog Apollo and cat Shakti always are there for me, as well as my barn family and friends from San Francisco who are still in my life.
What do you want other women to know who are feeling lost, and/or experiencing their own tragedy and/or struggles?
That they aren't alone, and that though the path feels dark and murky it's all part of the process. I believe we are all walking our own adventure of finding the inner heroine and part of that is the dark nights and facing the big shadows. But the more you walk forward in trust and grace, the more miracles can enter your life.
What is some advice you would give to women who are healing?Keep going. Anything is possible. And the more you have the courage to vision life another way, the more possible it is <3
To read more about Jen, to follow her, and to explore her offerings, be sure to visit her at her newly designed and launched website, The Unbridled Life.
Thank you, Jen for sharing yourself the way that you do, and for being part of the Rising Woman Project!