We're so honoured to have interviewed Amanda Rootsey from Shine From Within for our TRIBE TALKS series – a segment that focuses on conscious souls who inspire & cultivate a purposeful life. Take a seat, grab a herbal tea & read on.
1. Tell us a bit about yourself & the work that you do.
I’m the founder of Shine from Within, where I run programs for teen girls and coach women to create their own programs for teens in their community through our Youth Mentor Training. I host a podcast called The Youth Mentor Podcast and have just written a book for teen girls which will be out with Hay House in 2018.
2. What inspired you to launch Shine from Within?
I’ve been teaching personal development programs to teen girls since I was a teen myself but it wasn’t until I was diagnosed with cancer that I thought about starting my own training school. I had been modelling full-time in Europe after graduating Uni and suddenly I had to drop everything and just get well. I was 24 at the time and over the following 2 years I learned so much about wellness, self-care and a bunch of tools I wish I had known about as a teen girl. So, once I was in remission and had my energy back, I got really excited about launching a truly wholistic program that included classes like natural skincare and make up, alongside self-care rituals, yoga and healthy eating.
3. What is the most rewarding thing about working with teen girls?
Ohh that’s a tough one because everything about it is rewarding! My favourite course to run is our week-long course for teen girls and I love seeing them truly embrace their own beautiful traits at the graduation. They come in a bit tentative and nervous, having been told that they are ‘too shy’ or ‘too whatever’ – full of labels and self-doubt – and they leave with a greater sense of who they are and how they want to show up in the world. It’s an incredible feeling to witness that transformation throughout the week.
4. Walk us through a day in the life of you.
Every day is so different. I work from home so sometimes I can stay in my PJs all day but then I also go out to speak in schools, run training programs or speak interstate and sometimes I get to stay in gorgeous resorts running our retreats.
Being winter, I tend to wake up around 8:30am at the moment and play with our fur baby Trudi. I might sit in the sun and check in with my students in our Facebook group and have a play on social media. Then my partner, David Rafter, and I tend to have a slow breaky, depending on what’s happening for us that day.
He also works from home (he has an organic beard and hair care range for men called D&T - dandt.com.au) so we tend to check-in with each other in the morning to see how busy we are. Sometimes we both just want to get down to business because we love what we do and other times we’ll have a fun morning and then sit down to work later in the day.
I tend to check emails around 11am, after my assistant Brylie has had time to do some work and clear a few things off my plate for me. I try to work on just 3 MITs (most important tasks) each day before doing anything else. Otherwise, before I know it I’ve got 15 tabs open and I’m ‘working’ but not really efficiently. I usually have a few things scheduled in, whether that’s calls with parents of my students, a coaching call with my youth mentors, a speaking gig or a meeting with my team. But I’ve learned now that I need at least a day or 2 each week that’s just all white space and nothing scheduled in (aside from my week-long courses).
We usually have a break in the afternoon to go for a walk and make some dinner and lately I’ve enjoyed doing some writing in the evenings too.
Davey would be laughing at me right now attempting to share my schedule because he thinks I always want to have a structured day but also seem to rebel against any kind of schedule! So, this is as much of a typical day that I can share with you. Oh and I also volunteer at a local equine therapy centre for disabled children one day a week and have started a ceramics class, so that’s been fun!
5. How do you stay grounded (e.g. meditation, cooking etc).
Meditation is a non-negotiable for me.
6. 3 Instagram accounts and/or blogs you are loving right now?
@nicolanewmanart – Nicola is a beautiful friend of mine who’s recently sold her house and pretty much all her possessions and bought a sail boat with her husband. I love watching their adventures as they figure it all out on Instagram, YouTube and blog. Her website is www.nicolanewman.com
I love Naomi Arnold @naomiarnold too – she’s a life coach and host of the Dream for Others podcast. I love how she’s coaching and inspiring people to dream for others rather than just themselves. It’s beautiful.
And I’m always inspired by my friend Yvette Luciano @yvetteluciano too. She’s an inspiration powerhouse and her 'Soulpreneurs' program is perfect for anyone looking to find their passion and purpose in life.
7. If a song could describe your life, which would it be?
Hmm not sure about a song but the Hits of the 90s playlist on Spotify feels like it’s describing my life at the moment – so many memories growing up!
8. What are your top 5 non-negotiable life values?
They would be freedom, compassion, integrity, independence and love.
9. If there was one thing you could tell your 15-year-old self what would it be?
You’re doing ok. Trust your instincts beautiful girl, you are stronger than you could ever imagine.
10. What makes you come alive?
Meditation. Swimming in the ocean. Going for a walk in brisk air.
11. If you could have dinner with 3 people alive or dead, who would they be?
Hmm I think it would be hilarious to sit down for a vegan dinner with Alec Baldwin, Tina Fey and my partner David Rafter. We’ve been watching 30 Rock lately so they are top of mind!
12. Who is your greatest inspiration?
Spiritual teacher Supreme Master Ching Hai
13. How important do you think having a spiritual connection with oneself is?
I think it’s why we’re here. To me, connecting with Heaven within is what it’s all about. Everything else flows from that.
14. If you could have a superpower what would it be?
15. What do you want to be doing/feeling in 5 years time?
I can’t think of anything I’d change…but I’m excited to see what’s around the corner.
16. If you could be transported to any destination in the world right now, where would it be?
Thailand. My Dad lives there and I’ve been missing him lately.
17. How do you cultivate a balanced heart and mind with so much going on?
I make sure I keep up my spiritual practice every day and watch a lecture or read something from a spiritual book each day too. I’m also getting better at saying ‘no’ to things and feeling OK with that. We try to have little mini-breaks too as I find that even if you have a good work/life balance at home, I still feel work at home so getting away for a night or two to go camping or something always helps.
18. What are you working on at the moment?
I’ve got our third round of the Youth Mentor Training program running at the moment so I’m supporting them through the online program and getting organised for one of our in-person training weekends coming up. I’m doing a bit of evaluating at the moment and planning out the next 12 months of events too.
19. Finally – what has your experience with Hanako elixirs been like (if any)?
I haven’t had the pleasure of trying them yet actually!