Pick up the phone and talk to some you haven’t spoken to in quite sometime. It’s so good to hear a familiar voice OR, decide to speak to a family member that you don’t get a chance to see very often.
As a part of my interview series about the ‘5 Things We Can Each Do Help Solve The Loneliness Epidemic’ I had the pleasure to interview Tanya Otterstein-Liehs. Tanya is an authoritative EMPOWERING Mindful Health, Wellness & Fitness Coach, Self-Care Expert, Motivational Speaker, Co-Author, Podcast Show Host, Published Blogger, creator of the Body & Mindset Monthly Mastermind and the Self-Empowering Academy. She works with busy women to support, motivate, and inspire them to become empowered. Teaching women to acknowledge and give themselves permission to achieve their own personal goals without feeling they need to make sacrifices, without letting their fears or excuses stop them and to accepting how crucial making vital Life Dependent “ME” time every day is. Tanya transforms the lives of women’s by helping them gain self-confidence, self-love, self-worth, to loving their own reflection, revamping their outlook on life, and include time to move their body, develop positive mind-shift and rich self-discovery. She has two podcast shows, hosts monthly events for Women Entrepreneurs, runs an Online Mastermind Academy, Online Coaching Programs, facilitates Lunch & Learn Workshops, Motivational Talks, and presents Mindful Motivational Talks to local business and in schools.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you share your “backstory” with us? What was it that led you to your eventual career choice?
After being a stay-at-home mom to my two children, it was time to go back to work, at which time I decided to change my career from working as an Early Childhood Educator to becoming a Certified Personal Trainer Specialist.
I went from working in a gym studio to starting my own business in 2011, Body Business. Then in 2017, after listening to my many of my client’s feedback that I helped them transform the way they saw themselves to now being confident, proud of themselves, and valuing who they were. This was my light-bulb moment when I realized that becoming a Self-Care Coach was where my expertise excelled.
Fast forward to today I help women to transition their mindsets, revamp their outlook on life, and include time to move their body, develop positive mind-shift and rich self-discovery.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started your career?
My most interesting story is how creating my career as a Self-Care coach, has brought me to achieving things I never could have had I continued to work for someone else — my personal success story. My career has given me the chance to write articles that are published, I’ve been on local radio, local tv, and now with my podcast it has allowed me to share my message with a worldwide audience, and has opened up so many doors of opportunities and collaborations.
Can you share a story about the most humorous mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson or takeaway you learned from that?
The most humorous mistake I made when I first started was being introduced to someone I thought I knew and it turned out she just really looked like someone I had networked with in the past. I remember how I kept asking her about her business and the group I met her through. The takeaway, never assume you know a person just because they look like someone else.
Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you think that will help people?
I currently expanding my podcast to include guest experts in other professions rather than just the Health, Wellness and Fitness coaches, and I am expanding simplified self-care programs that can all be done online.
Having various experts on my podcast will open the door to benefitting women from other professions — a wider range of guests with relatable situations and scenarios — yet still sharing the import message of making self-care a part of your daily routine and loving who you are every day.
By expanding into offering simplified self-care programs to people online will allow them to feel less stressed as there are more options for flexibility and fitting into their own personal schedules.
Can you share with our readers a bit why you are an authority about the topic of the Loneliness Epidemic?
In this highly digital world, we are finding ourselves disconnected, more stressed, and personal interactions lacking and/or disappearing. The days where we actually talk with someone, hear their voice, and make human connections are becoming less-and-less, hence, Loneliness Epidemic is on the rise. As a self-care coach, one key element I talk about and coach on is listening to your own feelings and getting reconnected with yourself — how you feel. The importance of getting socially together with family and friends, and creating rich human interactions -connections — is vital for helping to fight this growing epidemic.
Ok, thank you for that. Let’s now jump to the main focus of our interview. According to this story in Forbes, loneliness is becoming an increasing health threat not just in the US , but across the world. Can you articulate for our readers 3 reasons why being lonely and isolated can harm one’s health?
1) You start to feel less worthy, can feel less important, and you can begin to think that your opinions no longer are important or valued
2) You begin to spend less time and may no longer look forward to getting together with friends; you to turn down opportunities for social interactions; you stay at home more and decrease enjoyment of life
3) Loneliness can lead to mental health issues like anxiety and depression
On a broader societal level, in which way is loneliness harming our communities and society?
We see reduced attendance at community events and social gatherings, which then reflects on planning less future events. A disconnect is created.
The irony of having a loneliness epidemic is glaring. We are living in a time where more people are connected to each other than ever before in history. Our technology has the power to connect billions of people in one network, in a way that was never possible. Yet despite this, so many people are lonely. Why is this? Can you share 3 of the main reasons why we are facing a loneliness epidemic today? Please give a story or an example for each.
1) Look all around you. People’s heads are down and staring into their digital devices instead of having their heads up paying attention to what is happening in their surroundings. Years ago it was common to pass someone on the street and greet them with a simple, “Hello”, or “Good Morning”. Today you may not even know how many people you passed and walked by.
2) Walk into any restaurant, for example, and you notice a group of people sitting at a table, but instead of talking with one another, they are looking at their digital devices instead. The sensors in our brain rely on visually seeing people’s emotions, and hearing the fluctuations in their speech to better understand their emotions and prevent miscommunication or understanding.
3) People find it faster and easier to simply send a text and/or email to someone instead of picking up the phone and having an actual conversation with someone. People are beginning to experience a real disconnect and craving personal human interactions, but are often hesitant on following through with doing so because they are afraid they’ll invade on someone else’s personal space.
Ok. it is not enough to talk about problems without offering possible solutions. In your experience, what are the 5 things each of us can do to help solve the Loneliness Epidemic. Please give a story or an example for each.
1) Make dates every month — this is where you get together at a friends house or meet at a location to chat about life — celebrations, what’s new; get together and go for hikes and/or any other weekly activities where you’re getting physically active together
2) Have game nights — spend an evening playing old fashioned board games at your place or a venue
3) Pick up the phone and have a conversation with someone you haven’t spoken with for a while — be it a friend or family member
4) When heading to a restaurant agree that no digital devices will be used during your time there
5) Host a social event for co-workers, other small business owners, or with your community members. Share ideas and agree to get together again the following month
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
To do one or both of these,
1) Write a letter to a friend that you haven’t seen in a while and tell them how much your friendship means to them; let them know that you miss them and you’d like to get together with them sometime within the next two months. If travel is not a possibility, then have a virtual chat with them.
2) Pick up the phone and talk to some you haven’t spoken to in quite sometime. It’s so good to hear a familiar voice OR, decide to speak to a family member that you don’t get a chance to see very often.
We are blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US with whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them 🙂
Brené Brown — she is authentic, feels and speaks about the same and/or similar messages I so strongly believe in — she’s inspiring and has messages that we need to hear
Mel Robbins — she keeps looking forward and continuously believes in herself
How can our readers follow you on social media?
Thank you so much for these insights. This was so inspiring, and so important!
“5 Things We Can Each Do Help Solve The Loneliness Epidemic” With Tanya Otterstein-Liehs was originally published in Authority Magazine on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.