Are you a princess or do you want to be the queen? Do you crave outside affirmation, or are you confident in what you are and what you can do? In this episode, Moneeka Sawyer sits down for a talk with eating psychologist and body confidence coach Harriet Morris. Harriet discusses the different archetypes people fill, and zeroes in on two: The princess and the queen. We learn the differences between both and why we need to unleash the queen inside. Tune in and learn more on becoming the queen you were meant to be.
I am excited to welcome you to the show, Harriet Morris. She is a coach and host of two podcasts, The Rebel Queen Empath and The Eating Coach. She’s almost a total failure as an employee and a miserable binge eater until the age of 40. It was at this age that she discovered her secret superpower. This is the ability to turn failure and self-sabotage on their heads through curiosity and experimentation. She has used her superpower to reclaim her life from compulsive eating, doubled her income in a year, and get over 200,000 podcast downloads. That’s impressive because if you know anything about podcasting, 20,000 in five years is fairly standard. Two hundred thousand downloads are amazing. She appears on shows like Entrepreneurs on Fire, which I have been on also. Her mission is to help women in midlife step into the role of queen, which means owning their power, dismantling their fear of success, and embracing their own imperfections. Ladies, you can tell why I wanted her on the show. Hello, Harriet. Welcome to the show.Instead of waiting for life to present an opportunity to you, life's going to say, “Well, no, you've got to do some work first.” Click To Tweet
Moneeka, thank you so much for having me.
Harriet, tell us a little bit about your story. The two-minute high-level version.
In my first career in teaching, I was no good. It was pretty bad. It was an adventure failure. Many people come on podcasts and they go, “I was a corporate bigwig,” and then I changed a bit, “No, I was a complete failure.” I then had kids and decided that I wouldn’t do teaching anymore so I did a variety of online adventures. When I turned 40, everything changed for me. I realized that I wasn’t going to live forever. I wanted to be free of the compulsive eating that I’d have for years and years. I released myself from compulsion by experiments.
There’s this one time I remember, and it was from giving up sugar. I’d given up sugar for about six weeks. I had done it through experimentation when no other gurus could help me. What happened was, I was standing in the supermarket and I was right in front of all the chocolate. I thought, “I’ve had enough of all this that I’ve done.” That food rebel was back and I’m going to have the junk. My hand reached that and said, “Which bar shall I have?” As that happened, the most bizarre thing took place, which was my feet turned to walk in the other direction.
We’re generally attached to our feet. I was like, “What was going on?” What was going on, in a nutshell, was that I had trained my subconscious over six weeks through experimentation to take a different action when I got a craving. It was a distraction action. Even though that day, I said, “I’m not doing any of these distractions,” my subconscious noted that I was stopping and it decided that we were going to walk away anyway.
I was annoyed because I wanted the junk. At the same time, I was like, “Wow.” From then, a couple of years later, I started coaching people with binge eating. It all went from there and I started my podcast. It was all these things that I was scared to do. I had no self-belief when I gave up all the junk. I had no self-belief when I started coaching and podcasting. I did everything as an experiment. That is the message I want to give people. You do not need to have belief in yourself. You just need to be curious.
I love that story about how it’s like a magic wand. Your feet had a life of their own right. Ladies, I know that normally, I don’t have people that talk about eating on the show. Part of what engaged me with Harriet was, first of all, she’s delightful so I wanted to share her with you, ladies. I say this on the show all the time, how we do anything is how we do everything. If we have compulsive behaviors, they are going to show up in different ways. Sometimes it can be a good thing.
My husband is compulsive and how that shows up is he gives me a lot of attention. He’s compulsive about me. There are good things about compulsions but a lot of times it shows up in a bad way. For instance, a compulsion to be lazy, procrastinate and self-sabotage. There are a lot of things that we do compulsively that show up in a bad way. If we have tools to adjust our compulsions, even if we’re talking about an eating disorder, now I can use them in making telephone calls, talking to my clients and tenants. It’s all of these things that we do in our lives. Now we’ve got a tool to adjust all that.It's good to do affirmations and to work on your beliefs, but it has to happen along with action. Click To Tweet
I also am always on a diet. My metabolism doesn’t cooperate as much as I would like to sometimes. My initial attraction to Harriet was I want to figure out how to have the magic wand to make my feet move the other way. What I realized was through getting to know her more is that this is relevant to real estate too. Ladies, you’re going to get two birds with one stone when we’re talking to Harriet. Thank you so much, Harriet. I’m excited. Let’s start by talking about the queen identity.
This is an interesting thing that’s not talked about very much. When I was doing my eating psychology training, we were told about this and you can imagine that the majority of people doing an Eating Psychology Coaching Certificate are women and a lot of women in their 40s. We all fell off our chairs with, “That’s me.” It’s originated by Carl Jung and he talks about archetypes. Does that mean anything to you?
If somebody hasn’t heard of it and they’re scratching their heads a bit, this is a big subject. For the purposes of our discussion, you can think of an archetype as a role you play. In any one day, you can play a number of roles slot into those archetypes. You can be the mother, the jester or the trickster. It’s quite interesting, but what Jung said was that there are some archetypes that are age-appropriate. He says that they are different for men and women.
For a woman between the ages of 0 and about 30, she is in the princess archetype. When I’ve said this to clients, some of them say, “I don’t like that word,” because they think it’s Disney. If you don’t like the word princess, you could choose a different word but this is what he used. The princess archetype is something like this, “I am not sure of myself. Do people accept me? I need affirmation from the outside.”
It doesn’t necessarily mean weakness. For example, if you took something like Katniss from The Hunger Games, she’s in that princess age and there are lots of brave things about her. She’s not a shrinking violet but she’s got lots of self-doubts and she doesn’t know if she can trust people. It takes her a while to inhabit this role of the revolutionary leader. You’ve got that from 0 to 30.
What should happen in an ideal world? As we all know, we don’t live in an ideal world. At the age of 30, a woman should start to transition to the queen identity and it’s a long transition. By the time that we’re 50, we should have got that out. By the time a woman is 40, as we told in my training, “Be on the queen program.” The difference between the princess and the queen is the princess is full of stuff that she wants affirmation from the outside.
The queen is sitting on a throne. She doesn’t need that outside affirmation. She’s sitting there and people come to her, and she knows who she is. What’s happened in our culture is that traditionally, women have been told to try and be younger, “Get the anti-aging cream on,” and to try and be like a princess. It’s interesting because a lot of the women have come to me with eating issues. I say to them, “You’re binge eating. It’s a bit like this beautiful alarm call saying, ‘Stop trying to do this,’” because they’re trying to diet to be less. It’s very princess when life actually wants them to sit on their throne and be the queen, and accept themselves more.
If they’ve got weight to lose or get fit, they can do that in an empowered way. Anyway, that’s a side point because I know this is not the point in this interview. Once I saw this, I was like, “I learned this in my early 40s. I can’t wait now I’m on the queen program.” It’s all about reframing things. Let’s say you have a negotiation issue that comes up with rent or something like this, instead of maybe thinking, “I must be collaborative,” because girls are brought up to please people and to be collaborative. I know these are massive generalizations but it’s about saying, “I’m on the queen program. How can I be more regal about it?” Does that make sense?
It does. It’s interesting because the capacity for collaboration is one of the female superpowers that men are not as gifted with. As we take it from the princess area where it’s collaboration for affirmation, we move it to collaboration to create empires. As a queen, now you’re collaborating with other queens and you’re creating empires and big things. You’re not looking for validation. You’re each bringing your own gift to the table like the Round Table of Queens. As all of us bring our superpowers, we now can create something much larger than ourselves. Collaboration still exists but this idea of being on the throne puts us in a different position.
This conversation is interesting because I have always called myself the princess. I always say, “I’m royalty without responsibility,” which is a goofiness about me. It wasn’t that I didn’t have self-confidence. I went through all of that but that was my thing. I never wanted to be queen, but now I definitely am the queen that sits on my throne. I’m more collaborative. I lift women up more. I have more power and I have a lot more self-respect. I’ve earned my own self-respect. It’s hard because you don’t know what’s happening. In my case, it wasn’t an intentional thing, but it’s been interesting to watch that transition and how the world has changed around me because of the paradigm shift that’s happened inside of my own head.
What does it do to the concept of middle age and getting older? It’s like, “Yes. That’s it.” I remember once when I was in a bar and I went into the bathroom. There was a girl there. She was so drunk and she was crying to her friend. She’s like, “He doesn’t want to see me anymore.” She was texting him. I remember I looked at her and I thought, “I’m so glad I’m not a princess.”
If he doesn’t want to see me anymore, his loss. Whatever.
Where’s the nearest throne?
Let’s talk about how actions change beliefs. I love this topic. I know that as a queen, we step into action before we believe our queen.
That’s exactly it. This is a concept that I created because I was tired. You can google inspirational quotes and you can see all these quotes of people saying, “You have to believe in yourself. Just believe in yourself and everything will follow.” When I was compulsive, all I knew was that I hated my life. I’m thinking of somebody who is starting out with investing and they may have a certain amount of money. You tell me if this happens, but somebody might say, “You need three times the amount to get going. Don’t bother.”
“You need three times the amount. Real estate is risky. You don’t know enough. Nobody else in the family has done real estate. Why do you think this is going to work for you?” There are all sorts of stuff like that.
I’m not recommending going and taking massive risks, but there are certain actions that you can take to start to help you see yourself as an investor. It’s the actions we take that then give those beliefs legs. It’s good to do affirmations and work on your beliefs but it has to happen along with the action. That’s how I’ve managed to do anything that I’ve done and help anybody that I have. It’s by diving in and doing it imperfectly as well.
There is this belief that if we have a particular mindset, things will be attracted to us. I even mentioned the way I changed and now the world is showing up differently. It’s is true but I didn’t just change my mind. I changed the way that I acted, the way that I was showing up, and what I was doing. Most of it was scary. I hope this doesn’t sound like bragging. It’s not that. It’s that I get it. This is hard and hopefully, to model what the possibilities are. You too, Harriet, are modeling what the possibilities are. Even if we have self-doubt, if we take focused action, we have the affirmations to boost up enough to take those actions and to support them. We’ve got our minds working in two ways to move us forward. That’s going to help us. A lot of people think that this whole attraction idea sounds like magic and it’s wonderful, but nothing happens until you take action. Action has to happen.
There’s a great quote from Steve Pavlina. He’s somebody that I follow. He’s a personal development blogger. He says that the best tools of the Law of Attraction are your hands and feet. I would also say your mouth when you’re negotiating, when you want to set something up, or when you want to ask for help. You can sit there and do affirmations until you’re blue in the face, but it’s going out and taking action. I don’t think in terms of the universe. I think in terms of life. I’m doing deals with life. It’s like, “If you want to start off investing, go out and do something,” because you’re saying to life, “I’m having a go.” Instead of waiting for life to present an opportunity to you, life is going to say, “You’ve got to do some work first.” I quite like that idea of making deals with life.
My dad used to always say, “God helps those who help themselves.” As long as I’m out there taking action, God will support me. I’ve always believed that and it is always proven to be true. He’s got to know what I’m doing, what I’m wanting, and what I’m willing to work for. The next topic you talk a lot about is this imperfect visibility. Let’s talk a little bit about that.
I started out with incredible body hatred and I worked on this. In 2019, I created something called the Body Confident Project. It was a project to see if I can help any woman, including myself, because I had my own body image issues and started accepting herself when she looked in the mirror. This is so important for women. It’s not just a beauty thing. It’s about how you’re showing up as the queen. I see so many women and they’re incredible and they’ll say something like, “I need to lose 5 pounds.” The queen shrinks to the princess. This happened and I and the clients I was working with could look in the mirror and go, “I look great.”
The funny thing is that in lockdown, everything changed because I couldn’t go to the gym. I’m thinking about the gym in the right way or in an empowered way as, “I want to be stronger rather than be less.” That was a big part of this imperfect visibility. Lockdown changed everything. I went ten steps back. On my podcast, The Eating Coach Podcast, I recorded an incredibly personal episode and it was like somebody who’s gay coming out. I would say, “I want to tell you that I’ve been compulsive during the lockdown. I’ve put weight on. I’m now dealing with this in my own empowered way without feeling about calories or anything like that.” That was to say that this is me and I’m imperfect. That is so incredibly powerful. It’s also powerful for us as role models.
One thing I hear time and time again is this longing from women in midlife to be better role models for the younger women, but they don’t know how to be. That’s one of my things. I want to help them step into that imperfect visibility so they can say, “No, I don’t eat like a supermodel.” How many people do you know who live in a mansion? Not all of us but nobody gets up and says, “I’m so angry. I don’t live in a mansion,” but they seem to do that with their bodies. That stops people from living their lives. I’ve gone on quite a lot. I get passionate about this topic.Your discomfort can take you back and then you don't feel very good, or it can take you forward. And that's where your life can change. Click To Tweet
I love your take on the idea of uncomfortability. Can you share with my ladies your take on that?
Uncomfortability is saying, “I am willing to be uncomfortable.” There are two kinds of discomfort and people don’t understand unless they’re already doing it. They go, “I do that,” or they experience it. For example, let’s take the first investment you want to make. You’ve done your due diligence. You’ve got the advice and it’s a risk that you can manage. You’re still, “I don’t know what to do.” You’ve got two choices. The key thing is accepting both of these choices include or will lead to discomfort. Discomfort number one is not doing this and staying where you are. That’s okay. It’s not as bad initially as the other discomfort but you don’t get anywhere. Nothing changes.
The other kind of discomfort is what I call this uncomfortability where I’m going to go in and do it. From that, you’ll learn something. Your knowledge will go further and you will learn to make better decisions. What’s interesting is that you manage your cognitive dissonance. Cognitive dissonance is, for example, somebody who smokes. They know that it’s bad for their health but they’re smoking. It’s having two contradictory truths in your head. What’s interesting is that the brain can’t stand it. Hardly anybody smokes anymore. I don’t know anyone who smokes now, but when people say, “I’ll give up next month,” or, “My granddad smokes and drinks whiskey. He lived to be 100.”
People will come up with this nonsense to kill this cognitive dissonance, but there’s something else you can do, which is much more interesting with cognitive dissonance. You can use it to move over to a new identity. With the first investment, for example, it’s like, “I want to be an investor but this is scary. What if it fails?” You’ve got these two truths. What you do then is what you would advise people to do. You would say, “Do the thing which makes you feel uncomfortable and align with the new identity. Accept that that cognitive dissonance is uncomfortable,” but it’s got a shelf life.
That’s the thing. It’s like me in the supermarket with my feet going the other way. I’ve reached this point where the discomfort has changed. That is where the shelf life was. That’s where it started to get much easier because when my feet turned and went the other direction, I thought, “I can do this now. I’m never going back. This is magic.” Your discomfort can take you back and you don’t feel good, or it can take you forward and that’s where your life can change.
I love how you talk about it having a shelf life because you’re only going to feel uncomfortable in that position for a short period of time. Eventually, your alignment will catch up and suddenly, this is the new normal. You see this when people get a brand-new car. You’ve always driven $20,000 cars, and now you got a $50,000 car. You’re like, “This is amazing.” You drive that car for two weeks and suddenly, you deserve a $50,000 car. This is your new normal. You’re not super elated about it because it’s now the new normal. We’ve grown into that new person with that new identity. This can happen in anything and whatever you’re doing in your business. We go into that person that we are being. I love that. I like your term of adversity proofing yourself. Could you expand on that?
It’s tied up with everything I’ve been talking about. It comes down to one question and I want to go back to talking about the queen. It’s not like everything is great. This is Carl Jung. He was quite clever about the human mind. It helps you deal with adversity and it’s the idea of instead of being a victim or, “Why is this happening to me? Why has the deal fallen through? Why has the market changed?” You say, “How am I going to manage this?” The key question which I love and it’s got me through some quite difficult times, is when I hate a situation, I can choose to be a victim but instead, I’m going to ask, “What would the queen do?”
Let me tell you a quick story. When I was learning about the queen, I was also doing a lot of audio relaxation and self-hypnosis. One day, I woke up and this image came to me. This was when I was going through my divorce. I saw myself as a shipwrecked queen and I was on an island. I’d been on a boat and it’s all gone apart. I wear the queenly robe and they were all tattered. I remember thinking, “I’m shipwrecked but I’m still the queen.” Nobody can take that title away from me in this visualization I was doing. If you think about all the resources that we’ve got, we can feel sorry for ourselves but anybody reading, you have an internet connection. You are educated enough to read this blog. You have so many more resources than you might think. That’s your queen power.
“What would the queen do?” I’m going to start asking myself that. That sounds great.
I watched the film Elizabeth. She had some horrible decisions to make but she had to be the queen.
Ladies, in EXTRA, we’re going to be talking about how to negotiate like a queen. I’m excited. Harriet brought it up a little bit during this part of the show. It’s about the way that you set boundaries, the way that you speak and view yourself in any given situation. We’re going to do a little bit of a deep dive on that. I can’t wait to hear a little bit more about the queen power. We’ll be doing that in EXTRA. Before we move into our three rapid-fire questions, could you tell everybody how they can reach you?
My email address is [email protected]. I’ve got a gift called the Queen Audit. The Queen Audit is seven questions you can ask yourself to help you pivot and move into that queen stage of life and give you clarity on some key things. For example, dismantling imposter syndrome. I would be excited to bring that to you because I don’t see anybody talking about this topic. It’s being transformative for my clients and myself.
Ladies, the URL for that free gift which is the Queen Audit Seven Powerful Questions to Help Any Woman Shift into Queen Identity is at BlissfulInvestor.com/harriet. As you’ve been reading, I know that for the ladies who are reading, the age range is 15 all the way up to 80. We’ve got a huge range, and the queen identity does not belong only to women over 30, 40 or 50. If you can sit on your throne significantly earlier in life, a new way of living happens for you, and then your queen can evolve. Don’t feel that if you’re a younger woman, this isn’t for you. As a matter of fact, I would encourage you to step into that queen as soon as possible because there’s no reason to doubt yourself. You’re this same person so start sooner.
If you think about somebody like Hermione from Harry Potter, she was a princess but she had definite queen elements to her personality, so you’re right.
Harriet, are you ready for three rapid-fire questions?
Give us one super tip on getting started investing in real estate.
Never tolerate the objection “I don’t know.” In this day and age, “I don’t know” won’t cut it. That is victim talk. If more than two people can do what you don’t know how to do, you can find out. This is the internet, so “I don’t know” is not going to cut it.
What was one strategy for being successful in investing in real estate?
I would say belonging. I’ve heard on your show where you talk about the certain clubs that you’re inviting people to. This is a great idea because you’re going to come across problems and maybe people who are trying to step on you in some way. If you’re part of a group, especially a part of the group who knows more than you, then that gives you a core inner strength. It’s something I call cave brain that I talk about an awful lot. The cave brain needs to be part of the group. If you’re beginning, you need to leverage other people’s greater experience.
Even if you’re not beginning, I still do. I’ve been doing this for many years. Having that community is a huge part of my success too and it will always be. This is the way that we work and how we expand. What is one daily practice that you would say contributes to your personal success?You can choose to be a victim, but instead, you need to ask what would the queen do? Click To Tweet
It’s quite boring. I was going to say meditation or something like that. That is good but it’s doing the most important thing first because you can go, “I want to do this, this and this.” In the morning, our brains are at their best. If you do the most important thing, you have this feeling of satisfaction and everything else falls into place.
This has been amazing. Thank you for all you’ve shared on this portion of this show.
Thank you. It’s been a delight to come on. I’m honored.
Ladies, we’ve got more. We’re going to be talking about negotiating like a queen, which I’m excited about. Stay tuned for EXTRA. If you are not yet subscribed to EXTRA but would like to be, this is going to be a fun episode. You might want to do it now. Go to RealEstateInvestingForWomenExtra.com. You get the first seven days for free so check it out and you can stay if you like. For those of you that are leaving us now, thank you so much for joining Harriet and me in this portion of the show. I appreciate you. I look forward to seeing you next time. Until then, remember, goals without action are just dreams. Get out there, take action and create the life your heart deeply desires. I’ll see you soon. Bye.
My name is Harriet Morris. From the age of 12, when it suddenly hit me like a lightning bolt that I was fat (NB I wasn’t fat – in retrospect I can see I was just reacting badly to the normal changes of adolescence), I was always unhappy with my weight. I followed numerous diets, detoxes, fasting, punishing exercise regimes – you name it, I tried it. Some worked temporarily, but none had any lasting impact – except to embed the idea that I was a fat, willpower-free zone.
I was also a compulsive eater. I used to steal my kids’ Easter eggs and tell myself I was looking after their dental health. Even moderate stress became a regular trigger for trips to the deli (or should I say dealer) to get my fix of fat and sugar. I used to regularly wolf down half my daily calorie needs in less than a minute- all in shameful secret, of course. I was never able to fully concentrate on conversations at parties, or shows at the theatre – all because at the back of my mind and an insistent voice kept whispering “FOOD”. I thought about it constantly, except when I was eating…or should I say inhaling.
My curiosity and creativity have allowed me to come up with some powerful practical strategies to change my eating and exercise habits in ways that empower me, instead of making me want to rebel. In essence, I sat down and had peace talks with my food addiction – while tying its shoelaces together under the table! This has not always been easy – what big life change ever is? – but it has been easier and often far more enjoyable than the endless yo-yo dieting and weight loss/weight gain vicious circle I used to endure.
I am a fully qualified eating psychology coach. I trained with the Institute for The Psychology of Eating.
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Moneeka Sawyer is often described as one of the most blissful people you will ever meet. She has been investing in Real Estate for over 20 years, so has been through all the different cycles of the market. Still, she has turned $10,000 into over $5,000,000, working only 5-10 hours per MONTH with very little stress.
While building her multi-million dollar business, she has traveled to over 55 countries, dances every single day, supports causes that are important to her, and spends lots of time with her husband of over 20 years.
She is the international best-selling author of the multiple award-winning books “Choose Bliss: The Power and Practice of Joy and Contentment” and “Real Estate Investing for Women: Expert Conversations to Increase Wealth and Happiness the Blissful Way.”
Moneeka has been featured on stages including Carnegie Hall and Nasdaq, radio, podcasts such as Achieve Your Goals with Hal Elrod, and TV stations including ABC, CBS, FOX, and the CW, impacting over 150 million people.