What’s your backstory?
I was a senior in high school, president of every club, a cheerleader, and already finished with all of my high school credits to graduate with honors. I didn’t graduate early so that I had time to save money for college. I was working as a waitress, tutor, assistant teacher, organizer, and a nanny, while looking for ways to start passive income so that I could focus on studying without stressing about work.
I dreamt of becoming a doctor who would change people’s lives and their health. I thought that as a doctor I could help change the world to be a better place. Even though I received full rides to my choice of college, becoming a doctor wouldn’t happen.
One night, as I tried to fall asleep after a long day of school and work, I felt my heart beating hard and fast, so hard it was hurting my ribs. My whole chest was shaking. After much convincing, my mother finally called 911. It was my first-time riding in an ambulance and my parents were already furious with me, anticipating the bills of what was to come.
I thought I was going to die.
The emergency room staff couldn’t bring my heart rate down. They were rude and hurled insults at me, making comments on how I looked, and the type of “trash” they thought I was, while I didn’t even have the strength to ask them to stop. My image of what healthcare was meant to be was slowly being ripped away from me.
Finally, after 3 days of countless blood tests and stress tests, and after finally admitting they were wrong and that I wasn’t on drugs, they discovered the problem. I simply had strep throat.
They sent me home with antibiotics and I thought I’d be able to go right back to normal.
But my heart rate was never the same, and neither was my health.
My heart rate stayed exponentially high and my body lost significant weight.
I couldn’t brush my own teeth, brush my own hair, or even have a simple conversation.
The teachers and students began treating me badly, because I couldn’t even hold my head up due to exhaustion from my illness.
It didn’t take long before I was labeled as a spoiled brat who wanted attention and an “easy pass.” (Even though…I had already passed.)
After being labeled and abused by the school staff because I was no longer “normal” and having no family support, and no longer being able to do simple, everyday tasks… I began wishing I had just died that day in the ambulance. It would’ve been easier than having to deal with watching all of my “friends,” teachers, and family say terrible things to me, treat me badly, and force me to do things I no longer could physically handle.
A quick death would’ve been much preferable to this agonizing, long, inferno.
Watching myself lose muscle and weight while there was nothing I could do.
Watching myself go from a super star athlete, to someone who couldn’t even brush her own teeth. Watching some people happy to see me so sick and withering away. Listening to my own friends and family say that I was a worthless loser, a burden, and a “cripple” and should just die. Being in this limbo was the worst. Being in this limbo is many people’s everyday reality.
As I went to many doctors and hospitals trying to find a solution, all I received was a total lack of care and my faith in western medicine was eventually shattered.
After winning over a million dollars in scholarships and winning all of the academic awards from my school, I decided on a small private college near home which guaranteed they would be understanding of my condition and they said it was fine if I needed to take days off to see my cardiologist. The college said I would have access to nurses and that they had healthy food options on campus. It was all a lie.
The professor who taught a class that students were forced to take on “how to use a planner” was told several times that I wouldn’t be at class due to a cardiologist appointment I had booked six months in advance and could not re-book. Instead of being understanding, she threatened to fail me, which would ruin my full ride scholarship. This led me to realize that school wasn’t worth sacrificing the little health (and perhaps life) I had left. With that realization, all my dreams to become a doctor were destroyed.
With this new purpose I had only two focuses: to get healthy or die trying. Now, more than ever, I had to become self-sufficient, because doctors weren’t helping me, my family wasn’t helping me, and the school and workplace wouldn’t want to work around my issues. I was going to have to learn how to make money in very little time with little energy, which pushed me to entrepreneurship.
During those next few years I lost the respect of everyone I knew. “You’re a quitter. You’re a loser. You just want attention. You’re wasting your life and youth. You’re throwing everything away. You’ve disappointed everyone.” I became isolated, but I made the best of it.
Regaining my health was the opposite of throwing my life away. It was the best decision I could’ve made. Creating my own online businesses instead of going into a workplace- also the best decision I could’ve made. Those people didn’t pay my medical bills and didn’t have to live with my disabilities. They had no idea what it took for me to simply stay alive. And they had no right to pretend they did. They had no right to say those things to me.
I was going to make the most of my situation, even with my immobility. I don’t know how I kept fighting, but I did.
I focused on reading books and improving my knowledge, my mind, my health and my abilities. I began writing books and learned about businesses and health. Everything I learned about health was the result of careful and strategic planning because one mistake would lead to cardiac arrest. It was like navigating my way through a minefield.
Once I was able to leave my parent’s house, I made everything in my life organic, wholesome, and toxin free. I bought the best water filter, organic mattress, and food. And with much work and dedication, I healed.
To this day, despite my best seller, despite working with some of the most prominent bi-regulatory physicians in the world, despite helping thousands of people achieve better health, I am hated by many for talking about the importance of a toxin-free life, in food, in relationships, and in the workplace. But I’m appreciated by more, for living in my truth and for helping others. For me it was a matter of life and death. I wanted and NEEDED to heal my life, and in the process, I learned that the same method could be applied to others.
My purpose is to help those who want to live healthy and unlock their greatest potential. I am grateful to live my life on my terms and to live out my original dream of healing people…only in a way I never knew was possible.
What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why.
1.When Business and Personal collide and demands you take sides, choose the greater harmonious purpose. Ask yourself, what would bring most harmony to everyone involved? Usually it means eliminating that which disrupts the harmony.
When I left school to fix my health and start my own online businesses, friends told me that they would no longer be my friend if I decided to go down this route. I lost those “friends” but I gained my health, and a beautiful life, with new friends. Sometimes people will ask you to do what they believe in vs what is the best decision.
2. Proactive Transparency and clear boundaries will save relationships. Relationships are the foundation of all successful businesses. Learn to have good relationships in all areas of your life, it leads to a better quality of life and also greater financial success. Proactive transparency is the key- it allows issues to be cleared up early on. Boundaries are essential to setting the expectations and enforcing expectations of a relationship to best serve both of you in the long term, without this what happens is people will take advantage of the other person and strain a relationship which also can drain the energy and resources of the other party.
3. Don’t be afraid to fire clients. Some clients can be holding back your growth and draining your resources. Just because money has been offered, is it worth sacrificing your harmony and well-being? I have fired clients before who claimed they wanted to get well, but constantly insulted me while doing the exact opposite of what they’re supposed to do to regain health. They would eat more fast-food, junk food, and toxins instead of eating less. If someone doesn’t believe in getting well by reducing fast-food and junk food, then they simply aren’t an ideal client. I need responsible, respectful clients with critical thinking skills because I believe in protecting the beautiful healing environment I created. When you fire a client who doesn’t fit, it allows you to use your resources to better help the clients who do fit.
4. It takes a lot of work to make something look easy. Many people assume that because I work at home, I don’t do anything all day—especially since I have such a good attitude and make my days look fun and easy. But if it were so easy, everyone would be doing it. When something looks easy it’s often because we are looking at the finished product but not the journey into what it takes to make the product.
5. Do it today, not tomorrow. Never let perfection get in the way of progress. Think back and recognize all of the things you’ve been procrastinating on could’ve been finished by now if you had only started when you said you were going to start. So simply, start.
Published by Asheer Raza