Sep 7th, 2020
In this episode, I welcome Liza Lomax! She is the founder of Love Your Body Coaching, and helps women fully accept and embrace themselves. She shares several stories about how art has not only impacted and inspired her own life, but also that of her clients' lives as well. As an empath, Liza is highly intuitive and discusses how that impacts her relationship with art.
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Intro & Outro Music Credits:
Bad Ideas (distressed) by Kevin MacLeod
Episode 17 - Liza Lomax
Lindsey Dinneen: Hello, and welcome to Artfully Told, where we share true stories about meaningful encounters with art.
[00:00:06] Krista: I think artists help people have different perspectives on every aspect of life.
[00:00:12] Roman: All I can do is put my part into the world.
[00:00:15] Elizabeth: It doesn't have to be perfect the first time. It doesn't have to be perfect ever really. I mean, as long as you and you're enjoying doing it, and you're trying your best, that can be good enough.
[00:00:23]Elna: Art is something that you can experience with your senses and that you just experience as so beautiful.
[00:00:31]Lindsey Dinneen: Hello, and welcome back to Artfully Told! I'm Lindsey, and I am very delighted to have as my guest today, Liza Lomax, and she is a coach, but she, that just like barely scratches the surface. And I'm so excited to share her with you today because she has an incredible story about her own trajectory, which led her to be a coach, but also just in general, her life story is incredible. And her stories about how art has kind of been weaving through her life is also incredible. And I'm just so excited that you're here, Liza. So thank you for joining us today.
[00:01:12] Liza Lomax: Thank you for having me. I'm super excited.
[00:01:16] Lindsey Dinneen: Yay. Awesome. Would you mind just sharing a little bit about yourself and your story or what kind of, however you want to introduce who you are? I would love that!
[00:01:26] Liza Lomax: For sure. So I'm a body image coach. My business is called Love Your Body Coaching. What is that? So I help women go from self-loathing to self-loving. I help women be able to look at themselves naked in the mirror and fully, truly, madly, deeply accept themselves and love themselves as the reflection that they see staring back at them.
[00:01:50]I have my own personal transformation story. It is quite a story, but we don't have hours and hours, so I will condense it a little bit for everybody. As a teenager, I suffered from two EDs [eating disorders]. I suffered from anorexia and overeating, so binge eating, and I went from one end of the spectrum to the other. And by the time I was 26, I weighed 300 pounds. I was borderline diabetic. I had high cholesterol. I had high blood pressure. I had a two year old at the time and the doctor told me that if I didn't lose weight, I wasn't going to live to see him turn five. And again, he was two at the time. So I was like, well, I want to live to see my son. So I'll lose the weight.
[00:02:37]Now I came from a very religious background, a very religious household. And, you know, as all children, when right away when we're little we're, you know, when we're told they have to look a certain way and dress a certain way and act a certain way and be a certain way. And when we're not those ways, we try to fix them. And that's where that not good enough story starts. And then it, you know, harbors is in our brains until there until we're an adult. And then that's all we think about is that we're not good enough. We're not special enough. We're not beautiful enough or not pretty enough. We're not this, we're not that.
[00:03:10] And I really had that not-good-enough story really just stick in my brain so ingrainly deeply in there that I just, I didn't care about myself. I didn't love myself. I literally hated myself. I had low self esteem. I would look in the mirror and I would hate the person that was staring back at me. I suffered from body dysmorphia. And so I literally would see a monster in the mirror when I did look in the mirror. And so when I was 300 pounds and I was sitting in the doctor's office and he's telling me I've got to die. I'm like, okay, well, I got to do something. So I lost 105 pounds in 13 months.
[00:03:52] However, I didn't change my mindset and I continue to yo-yo over and over and over. I still had those same behaviors with same habits, so same limiting beliefs. And it took me probably about five or six years later. I literally hit rock bottom. And I was addicted to diet pills. I was a heavy drinker. I did things to my body nobody should ever do to themselves. I had such a low self esteem. I hated myself, hated everything about me. I put myself in situations where I should have been killed, and whether you believe in God, higher source, higher power, whatever you believe--I really believe that God just was telling me that I needed to change and something needed to give.
[00:04:34] And because I've been a people pleaser, I've been a doormat, I've been a caregiver. I have taken care of everybody around me. I'm a lover of love. I love people. I love to give myself and I've given so much of myself to everybody else that I've never given myself myself. If that makes sense. I've never given anything to me. And I've never loved myself. Truly madly, deeply loved myself. And so it sent me on this mission to find me, to find my authentic self, to find who I am, to love myself, to heal all those wounds, to reframe, retrain those limiting beliefs, those behaviors, those stories that I created, you know, since I was a child. And, you know, create new habits, new beliefs and new behaviors.
[00:05:21] And, so I went in, got certified in multiple, a multitude of different things and, you know, and went and studied every self help book and every guru and everybody out there. And so I had all these tools in my toolbox because I knew that there were other women out there that struggled. There are other women out there that needed my help. And because I'm such a lover of love and lover of people, I knew my mission in this world was to love people and was to give love and show people how to love, and show women how to love themselves, just the way they are. And through all this process, art was really incorporated in my life. And I never really thought about it because it was just, it came second nature to me. And, when I was 14, I started writing poetry. And I channel a lot, so I'm an empath. I'm highly intuitive, and so I channel a lot of people's emotions, including my emotions, by myself.
[00:06:17] So writing was a huge thing for me. Writing poetry was a huge thing for me and during some really, really dark times, I noticed I found this love for painting, and so I would paint. I used painting as a way to express my emotions and to get them out. So for me, it was like a way of getting them out of my, out of my body, and putting them somewhere else so that I didn't have to hold onto them anymore. That was my way of releasing it. Everybody has their own way of releasing things. That was my way of releasing. And I really felt that it really helped me. It was very beneficial for me and really helped me get through some really dark times. And, now I use that, I incorporate it in my coaching. I use that as a healthy, emotional outlet to go to when you're struggling or when you have something, you know, you need to release those emotions. Art and drawing and painting and writing are great ways to release those emotions. So yeah, that's a little bit about me.
[00:07:22] Lindsey Dinneen: Yeah. Thank you.
[00:07:25] Liza Lomax: Yes, you're very welcome. Thank you.
[00:07:28]Lindsey Dinneen: Yeah. So your story is just incredibly powerful. And I love the fact that now you are taking, obviously a very difficult journey that you've been through, to empower not only yourself, but other women who probably have gone through very similar things and felt, you know, very similarly and and I just think that's an incredible gift that you're giving. I would love to dive a little bit deeper into some of the ways that art has had an impact in your journey. If you don't mind, if any stories come to mind as to, maybe specifically, if there's anything in particular that kind of stands out as being truly helpful in that journey. And, and I know before we started recording, we had talked about how you even encourage in your coaching this to be an outlet. So I'm just, I'm super curious to hear a little bit more about that if that's okay.
[00:08:22] Liza Lomax: Oh yeah, for sure! And actually one story comes to mind. I, you know, not only went through a lot of stuff. I also had a lot of toxicity in my life and I had a lot of people, places and things is what I call them. And I went from one abusive relationship to another and in different ways of abusiveness. And I remember this one time that I started painting again. And it was a picture of--in my head, I had this picture of me standing in darkness and all I had was a little, a little bitty lamp. And I was holding onto this lamp and there was just this little bit of glimmer of light. And there was all this darkness around me and it symbolized what my life was like at that time. And I had a lot of darkness around me. I had a lot of toxicity in my life. I was in a very abusive relationship, mentally and not physically, but mentally and emotionally abusive. And I remember I'm painting this thing and I remember that person coming up and ridiculing me about this painting in this picture, that it looks like something that I'm, I'm not going to say on, on this call, but referenced it being something just really disgusting and in a space that just was not good. And, I could have easily scratched it and ripped it up and tore it away or threw it away.
[00:09:55] You know, I could have easily have done something like that, which my past self probably would have. Because I'm like, "Oh, well I don't live up to this person's expectations." So I'm just gonna, I'm just going to do something else. But no, I had the mindset that, no, I'm going to finish this painting 'cause it's something that I need to do and I need to get it out. And if you could just envision a little girl, standing in a big dark forest and all that she has is the little light in her lamp. And, that was the picture--was just this, all this darkness around but I knew that there was some light at the end of the tunnel. And I knew that I was going to get through whatever the situation that I was in at the time I was going to get through it because I had my light and whether it was super, super tiny, it didn't matter, 'cause it was still light in that darkness.
[00:10:47]Lindsey Dinneen: I love that. Do you still have that painting?
[00:10:51]Liza Lomax: It's somewhere in storage.
[00:10:53] Lindsey Dinneen: Oh yeah?
[00:10:54] Liza Lomax: 'Cause we travel me and my partner travel a lot, so it's in storage somewhere, but...
[00:11:00] Lindsey Dinneen: I'm glad you kept it.
[00:11:03] Liza Lomax: Yeah. Yeah, it was, it, yeah, it was a very pivotal time and in my life at that time, when I drew that. Yeah, very memorable to me.
[00:11:14] Lindsey Dinneen: Absolutely. And so I know that you also encourage your clients to use art as an outlet. Do you mind sharing a little bit more about that?
[00:11:25] Liza Lomax: Yeah. So in my program, there's a module that we go through called Healthy Emotional Outlets. And whether it's EFT or whether it's energy healing work, whether it's exercising, some of the other things I've incorporated are music and drawing and painting and writing. And, one of the things I encourage right away when my clients start a program with me is to start journaling and start writing. Writing for me has always been a huge impact. And, so writing right away and using art as a way to get your emotions out and to be able to--cause some, I mean, we don't, we're emotional beings. I mean, we base every choice, every decision, everything that we make is on emotions. And you know, a lot of times we're told that we can't show our emotions and we can't be emotional and you know, "I'll give you something to cry about."
[00:12:24] You know? I mean, there's these things that we're told that when our kids that we know we can't, we can't do these things. And so we grow up pushing our emotions down and down and down, and we have such a hard time releasing those. And so using art as a way to release those emotions is huge. It's very impactful because if you don't know how to release them, I really believe that art is a good way of releasing those emotions.
[00:12:52] Lindsey Dinneen: And when you encourage your clients to use that as an outlet, which I love--I'm super biased as an artist myself--but I love that you do that, because it can make such a difference--is it something where do you ever get any kind of pushback where people think, "Well, I'm not an artist or, you know, I, I can't draw or I can't paint." Or is that part of like a mindset that you're also working to help kind of overcome? The "I can't" or "I don't" kind of thing associated with art?
[00:13:24] Liza Lomax: Yes, because yes, we can do things. We just choose not to do them. So I tell people I'm like, you can do something, you just choose not to do them. And you know, if you don't want to do it, that's fine. It's there and everybody always gives it a least a chance, a go. And I love it when I hear people say that they can't draw or they can't sing. And it's like, well, first of all, you can sing. It just might not be very good. And you can draw. It just might not be very good. So, you know, saying that you can't do something is not true. It's never true because you can do it. Just so, so it doesn't matter whether it doesn't look good to you or to somebody else or to whomever. You're still getting that out and still getting those emotions out and still releasing what you need to release. So I don't believe in the word "I can't." It's always, you choose not to.
[00:14:22] Lindsey Dinneen: I love it. I love that so much. Oh my goodness. Yeah, because I think it's so important--and I love the way that you worded it--it is so important that we go into something that new for us. And maybe we've never expressed ourselves in that way before, but we go into it saying it's possible. I might not be very good at it, but that doesn't-- it shouldn't decrease even the attempt at it. I mean, I'm not brilliant at drawing, but I'll do it. I can kind of draw a little bit, some stick figures.
[00:14:57] Liza Lomax: Right, right! If it's a whole, a whole page of stick figures. Okay. So be it. That's your art. It's okay. Art is art is art is art. It doesn't matter what it is.
[00:15:08] Lindsey Dinneen: Absolutely. I love it. Yes. So do you personally continue to engage in the arts? I mean, are you still kind of active as an artist? I know different seasons lead to different things, but, are you still kind of enjoying arts as well?
[00:15:24] Liza Lomax: Yes. I mean, all the time I'm constantly doodling or writing. You know, something comes to my mind, I'll write it down. So, but with all the arts, you know, I did theater for 15 years and that was a huge impact in my life as well. I've always incorporated lots of art into my world. And, music is also a huge form of the arts and going and listening to music and really listening to the melodies and the silence behind it. And that has an impact on how you feel too. Music is a huge thing too, for me. I still doodle, I still draw. I travel a lot, so I can't always just sit and get an easel up and start painting, but when I get an opportunity, I'll take it.
[00:16:13] Lindsey Dinneen: Sure, absolutely. Well, thank you so much for sharing about your own life journey and sharing about what you're doing now and how you're helping people. And all of that is so wonderful. So thank you for sharing that with us. I really appreciate it.
[00:16:29] Liza Lomax: Thank you.
[00:16:30] Lindsey Dinneen: And, I would love if it's okay with you, I always ask the same three questions to my guests. So I'm just curious about your opinions on them, if you're okay with that.
[00:16:40] Liza Lomax: Yes, for sure.
[00:16:42] Lindsey Dinneen: Okay. So first, how do you personally define art or what is art to you?
[00:16:48]Liza Lomax: Oh, wow. That's a good question. Oh, how would I, how would you describe it? To me, art is an emotion. it's anger. It's sadness. It's happy. It's frustration. It's irritation. It's gratefulness. It's blessings. When I look at art, I can feel what the artist was portraying at that time because I'm an empath. So looking at art is very impactful for me because I can see it and I can feel what the person was trying to express or trying to convey. You know, there's so many pieces of artwork where people are like, they don't understand it. They don't get it. Like, what is this? It looks just like a bunch of jumbly blobs on a canvas, and I can look at it and I can see what they were feeling and what they were doing and how they were--what they were trying to convey through the art. So to me, it's--art is emotions. If that makes any sense.
[00:17:54] Lindsey Dinneen: It absolutely does. That's a great answer and a unique one. I haven't heard it expressed quite like that before, so I love it. Thank you. Okay. So what do you think is the most important role of an artist?
[00:18:07]The most important role of an artist... being themselves and being their authentic selves. I think, you know, artists take a risk at everything that they do because you could be easily rejected or easily accepted. And if you show your authenticity through your work in anything that you do, not just art, but I mean, we're talking about art right now, but to show your authenticity through your work, makes it very valuable.
[00:18:38]That's another great answer. Okay. And my last question, and I'll define my terms a little bit, but do you think that art should be inclusive or exclusive? So by inclusive, I'm referring to an artist who, when they share their art with the world, that you know a little bit of context behind it now. So whether that's a title or program notes or what inspired this piece or whatever. So you have a little bit of context going into it as an audience or as a observer. Versus exclusive being the artist shares their work and doesn't necessarily provide any context to it and just lets the observer take from it what they will, if that makes sense.
[00:19:28]Liza Lomax: I, so when I go into a museum, I go in and I see art. I don't read the little note cards or the little things, the little plaques next to it, because I like to see the art for what it really is, and I don't like to be influenced on what, where, what time it was done or what year it was done or who it was done by, or what the explanation was. So I like to look at it and just look at it for the actual art. I don't read anything about the artists. So I would say exclusive, because it's like, to me, I want to see the art. I don't necessarily need to know about the history or the background or why it was created. I just want to see just the art.
[00:20:15]Lindsey Dinneen: Perfect. All right. Excellent. Well, and you have a really unique perspective, I think too, because like you shared with us earlier--when you look at a piece of art or experience art, you are able to draw from it emotions and feelings and all those kinds of things that maybe someone who isn't as empathic would find. So that's a pretty unique perspective too, which I love. So, yeah! Well, again, thank you so much for being a part of this. Is there a way for us to get in contact with you and learn more if anyone would like to do so?
[00:20:54] Liza Lomax: Yes. So I am, of course, on all the platforms. I'm on Facebook under Liza Lomax. I'm on Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn. My website's being redesigned right now but you can check it out and check more of my story out. It's just lizalomax.com. But the best way to get ahold of me is probably Facebook. And then, my email address is just firstname.lastname@example.org.
[00:21:20]Lindsey Dinneen: Perfect. Thank you, Liza. Well, thank you also to all of you who are listening to this episode, and if you're feeling as inspired as I am at the moment, I would love for you to share it with a friend or two, and please feel free to get in touch with Liza. She is absolutely wonderful as you can tell from just this brief conversation with her. Obviously she has a lot to share with the world and give, and we will catch you next time.
[00:21:52] Do you have a story to share with us? We would love that so much, and I hope your day has been Artfully Told.