A single mother who was ‘blindsided’ by divorce found herself diagnosed with anxiety – but now she’s helping others through their heartbreak.
Upon retraining as a mindset coach, Sam Patel works with women after break ups.
The 51-year-old, who lives in Hertfordshire, was married for 12 years before her ex-husband came home one day and said he didn’t want to be in the relationship anymore.
Sam said this was ‘a complete shock’ and went through what she describes as a ‘cycle of grief’.
She lived off Rice Krispies for several weeks, and only slept for around four hours per night as her mind was constantly ‘racing’. Eventually, she was diagnosed with anxiety.
Years later, after losing all her confidence, being made redundant from her job at a PR firm, and being diagnosed with a blood disorder, Sam started working with a mindset coach.
She says her life turned around, and she was able to build something positive out of her experiences.
Now on good terms with her ex, who she co-parents with, Sam has found she is ‘comfortable with being single’ – something she thought impossible before.
She said: ‘I did not know how I was going to pick myself up.
‘But I am proof that you can come out the other side and build a really awesome life for yourself, and let go of all those negative feelings that you had.
‘A big part of what I do with women is about encouraging them to let go of that anger, hurt, betrayal, all those feelings, because the only person that they’re affecting is you.
‘The more you hold onto that negativity, the harder it is going to be for you to rebuild your life.’
In the initial aftermath of her divorce, Sam says she battled with a ‘constant cycle of blame and guilt’, and convinced herself that the divorce was her fault – that she ‘had not been enough, or attractive enough, or smart enough’.
Balancing being a single mother while working and processing the divorce in her mid-40s took its toll.
‘You think that I must have done something wrong, what did I do?,’ she added.
Sam’s GP prescribed her antidepressants which began to help, but she still needed to rebuild her career after losing her job.
It took three years for the right job to come to her – and she hasn’t looked back.
She said: ‘I started working with a mindset coach on my own mindset – and that was the moment when I realised that that’s what I wanted to do.
‘I could see the impact that it had on me, working with a mindset coach, and how it built my confidence and my self-esteem back up, and I let go of judgement.
‘I could see that I could offer that to other women who were in a similar position to me, with low self-esteem, low confidence, and just help them rebuild their lives.’
Sam said seeing her clients transform, in terms of their confidence and accepting who they are, is the most rewarding part of her job, and she wants to continue to ensure that women are not defined by their divorce, but rather go on to thrive.
She added: ‘It feels really hard when you’re in it, it feels like there is no way out… but just know that it won’t always be like that.
‘Keep going, keep telling yourself that you can do it, and that things will get better.’
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