In this episode:
In this episode of The Fearless Females Podcast your host Tegan Mathews interviews Marisa Russo who shares:
- How she overcame a childhood of abuse
- The power of hearing an apology
- Healing through connecting with your feelings
- Empowering women through dignity, value and humanity
Tegan's Take Aways from talking with Marisa Russo:
- It takes an immense amount of courage to decide to face your past and it won’t be easy but it will be worth it
- By finding the truth and then making sense of it, you can then acknowledge what happened to you, which will banish inner anguish and confusion.
- Most women have been conditioned to disconnect from their feelings but feelings are your inner guidance system. They tell you when something is right or wrong. Start connecting today by asking yourself, “How do I feel right now?”
- Receiving a genuine apology for what has happened to you can heal even the deepest wounds – and it doesn’t have to come from the perpetrator(s).
- If I’m afraid to show up as me, and I’m shut down, you can’t see me which means you can’t connect with me, you can’t love me and you can’t trust me. Having the courage to be vulnerable and open then allows others the opportunity to see, love and trust who we truly are.
About Marisa Russo
Marisa Russo, founder of Forensic Healing and author of Freeing the Unloved Girl is an international award-winning teacher, author, speaker and alternative therapist. She’s been pursuing her mission to heal herself and others for 30 years. The media refer to Marisa as the ‘Sherlock Holmes of Healing’. She has a mind that never stops questioning, digging for answers and solutions. She thrives on solving the most challenging health conditions and life circumstances.
After working with thousands of clients over the years, Marisa knows the mind-set, the healing processes, and techniques that really work to help people heal.
Contact Marisa Russo
A Gift for Listeners From Marisa Russo
Gain access to a four-part video starter course of the award-winning Forensic Healing Structured Natural Therapy System combining science and intuition to release pain, stress, and long term conditions fast. Uncover the patterns you run in your life, the ages they were embedded and some simple healing techniques to begin your healing journey.
Show Notes: 034: Empowerment and apologies – Marisa Russo
Marisa Russo’s Fearless Story
My childhood was very dysfunctional, very abusive and I was very disconnected. My father would beat us, me particularly, he didn’t like me because I didn’t really like him and he knew I didn’t like him. He also sexually abused me. So, it was just dysfunctional and I struggled to get through that.
I just remember feeling scared, fearful and just hated myself and hated my life. Then when I became a teenager I rebelled and when I reached my twenties I would seek ways to block the pain through alcohol, drugs, sex and whatever it was. Then I was at such a low point. I was crazily living in Italy and I prayed, because I was religious back then, I prayed to God because I did have a spiritual experience when I was around eight as a child.
So I got on my knees and prayed to God and then I ended up finding the Mormons and that cleaned me out because you didn’t drink, you didn’t smoke, you lived this pure life, there’s no swearing and no pre-marital sex. That really started to get me back to connection.
But the whole journey was really feeling like I was living in a hell. I had this instinct to get out of the hell some way but then I had instinct to want to kill myself and die because I hated the pain so much. So it was just this craziness and somehow I was led.
You know, you get led to one place and one person and you learn what you have to learn or experience what you have to experience and you just keep moving but it’s never smooth, it’s never easy and it’s taken, I must say, a lot of courage and a lot of determination to tell myself that I could feel better, I could have joy and I could be free.
How did you get through that situation?
Fortunately, I never ended up with a partner that was physically abusive but the abuse as a child, I think I just really disconnected but it was almost like, mind over matter. It was like my father, was trying to beat me into submission in a way to say, “I want to control you and you are going to do what I say and you’re going to love me.”
I would just look at him and say to myself, “I’m not going to like you, no matter what you do”. You can’t make me like you. But I guess, I can’t really say that I did anything. It’s just a natural thing to disconnect from childhood and I stayed disconnected until I reached my thirties and forties.
When I was connected emotionally and spiritually it was dramatic. I physically had this reaction on the table of getting a healing and in that moment that I got off the table I could read thoughts, I could feel thoughts, I would physically move to someone’s thought. It was like energy was running fiercely through my body but I could also feel energy and it was quite amazing.
That was an alternative healing I had in the beginning of my forties. I went through this journey of trying to get out of the hell I was living. This emotional hell in my mind turned into physical pain. I couldn’t bear it some times. I wanted to end my life from the physical pain I was in.
It was sort of a manifestation from car accidents and all the emotional pain that had been stuck inside my body and my body couldn’t contain or hold this in for much longer. And so I began to be more and more open and I got to a point where it got so bad that I said to myself, “I don’t care anymore. If you can help me I will try it”. That’s why I moved over to alternate healing. Also, I had left the Mormon church and so I was more free to try other things.
How did you turn that all around?
I couldn’t sit down any longer. I had done about ten years in the British BP head office and I just couldn’t sit down for a full day any more. I just couldn’t do it. So I left and then started to look at different ways of getting an income and after I had my very first kinesiology healing, what convinced me to go down that path was I saw this guy when I was in Queensland.
I was at an Anthony Robbins seminar and my neck was so bad I couldn’t sit in the seminar and I wasn’t concentrating. Someone said, “Go see this guy, he’s weird, different” and so I did. Anyway, he used some sort of kinesiology and I don’t know what he did but all I know is I walked out of there I couldn’t believe how different I felt.
He didn’t actually touch my neck either. I was used to more conventional therapies. And then I said to him, “Who can I see in Melbourne?” He sent me to his instructor who I went to see him and the moment I got on the table this guy said to me, before I had told him anything, “Oh yes, you were sexually abused at the age of six by your father” and then he started to name all these other things and I looked at him. He said, “I’m not psychic, this is a science and I have a course that starts next week.” So I said, “Well, sign me up”.
I just knew intuitively that I needed to go deeper into a more spiritual aspect of myself. I needed to just go deeper and that was the path I had tried to heal myself of the physical pain but what it really did was also heal my soul, my spirit and my emotions that were really very traumatised. My soul was very shattered and that was the beginning of something great.
But it wasn’t easy. It’s not like you get on the table and you feel great. In fact, getting on the table and looking at what’s happened to you is very scary. You have to have a lot of courage and know that you’ve got to do it. There were times when my body physically knew it was facing the fears and I was a mess even before.
That particular healing that I talked about where I actually started to feel energy, I was in the bathroom an hour before that healing, a mess on the floor. My body just knew it was about to face the fears. But I stayed on that table and I just go, “I’ve got to do it!”
What’s happened since you faced those fears?
Well, it’s enlightened me a lot. It’s true, the truth really does set you free. I was naturally like that. I look back on my life and I was a bit of a truth seeker. I remember when I had the visions come back to say that I was sexually abused because I didn’t know. Then I started to put pieces together and I would want to find out truth and see if it was true.
I went back to the house where I was sexually abused and knocked on the door and then I wrote my dad a letter and then we did physically meet up. I had to get this clarity. I had to know if it was really true and if it’s what really happened.
By finding the truth, and then making sense of it, on the other side of it is really acknowledgement that it happened and acknowledgment that it makes sense why you’re a basket case. I used to always plead guilty on the grounds of temporary insanity.
“Why did you do that?” I was insane at the time. Insane things are done to you, act insane. The other side of that is really, I’ve gone deep into looking at my own stuff and I created Forensic Healing. We’re detectives of someone’s life and energy field. That has freed me and now I teach that to others and I read their energy fields.
Now I sit there and I look at the world and why we’re in the mess that we’re in and what works and what doesn’t and then I just see that I have a mission to, in my way, bring back humanity. And I see it through healing women. They’re the ones with great healing abilities, power and they’re the ones who have suffered the most. They’re the ones who are being disrespected and abused.
So if you bring that back and get them restored to dignity and self, that they know they’re worthy and respect then they will not tolerate the injustices that are done on the planet. They won’t tolerate injustices done to them or their children.
So that’s why I have drive, I have ambition, I have courage and I have this, it’s unrelenting. I cannot do anything else.
How do you know when you ‘have’ to do something?
Well, this is what I do teach. I tell people to start connecting with their feelings because you don’t know how you feel unless you ask yourself, “How am I feeling?” and most women have been disconnected and they aren’t used to saying, “Oh, I feel like this and I am going to follow it.” They’re used to ignoring their feelings and making sure everyone else is ok.
The moment you actually start asking yourself, “How am I feeling?” and you practice following your feelings and acknowledging your feelings you start to feel more guided and more connected because you have a GPS inside of you. It’s your intuition and it will take you to what you really love and it will take you to what you should be doing. It will take you to meeting of the right people and it will protect you.
It’s actually a gift to be able to feel and it’s a gift to then connect with people and feel emotionally fulfilled. When someone is being emotional it’s telling them something. It can tell them a few things. It might tell them that there’s a trigger that’s coming to them from someone else that’s putting them out of balance or it’s telling them what they’re doing that’s not right or this person isn’t a good person.
They need to be able to understand what their feelings and emotions are telling them and when you get more clear on that it can make you heal or it can protect you and take you to that right place.
Your scariest experience?
The most, of all the scary things I’ve done, the scariest was facing my dad when I met with him one on one. I wrote him a letter saying that I wanted an apology and so I was invited to his house when I was in his state and we were there, just me and him.
I was scared, so scared. It was like I was back in childhood and I went back to that feeling because I hadn’t healed myself at that point. And he said, “You want me to say sorry?” and he pulled out of his pocket, a letter and he handed it to me and I started reading it. It was twenty reasons he was sorry that I was ever born.
It was, “I’m sorry you were a whore, I’m sorry you joined a cult and I’m sorry…” It was so negative and so shocking and here I was wanting him to say he was sorry for what he did to me and he did that. I just remember screwing up the letter and I threw it on the floor and I was trying to get out of his house.
Of all my memories that would have to rank right up there with fear pumping through me and feeling like I was back in my childhood. Yet, from the outside looking in, that would potentially be one of your most fearless moments too? Yes.
What are the gifts you received from that experience?
When I look at my life, and because I analyse it a lot and I ask myself, “What can I get from that?” or “What do I understand from that?” and in that moment it has probably been one of my most powerful in the way I now heal someone.
It actually is making me emotional (teary) right now because when I heal and I hear the most shocking stories of women, I’m ok and I can hear the story but there’s a part when I am healing them, when I will say I’m sorry. And in that moment when I say I’m sorry to them, I really mean it, and then I acknowledge what’s been done. My saying sorry is probably the first apology they’ve ever got and I’ve healed people in those mere words.
I’ve got story after story of when they’re on the table and we have that one on one. It takes that burden off them when someone finally says, “I shouldn’t have been abused.”
I had a lady who’s father would beat her and then put her head in a bucket of water and as an adult, she couldn’t even go swimming. She’d even had shock treatment and everything done to her (which shouldn’t have been done) but that [my saying sorry] healed her and she wrote to me to say that she can now go swimming.
So that is what that experience taught me was that I now realise the power of an apology.
A memorable moment?
A really good one, that I have written about in my book, was in 2011 I went to the States (USA) and we invited people to come and watch me heal. One, that’s very scary to see if someone is going to heal or not, in front of a big audience, and that taught me a lot.
But the best thing was, I was sitting in the Agape Centre which is where Michael Beckwith from the Secret and I was at his congregation on a Sunday. He does about four a day, each with over 2000 people per session. I was sitting there and he pointed me out in the crowd. Someone had told him about the healings I had been doing and so he’d heard about me and he identified that must be me and he invited me up on stage to talk.
Apparently, he never does that and in that moment he endorsed me and he said he had heard about me. What that did was give me confirmation of my mission and what I’m here to do and validate me. It’s not often that alternative healers get validated. Once upon a time they’d be burnt at the stake for being intuitive and healing. That was very memorable for me.
What is the title of the book by Marisa Russo?
Well I’ve written a book called “Freeing the Unloved Girl” by Marisa Russo and it’s got parts of my story in it but it’s also got some exercises. So it takes them on a journey and I make sure it’s got some humour in it and I make sure it’s not too dark, I want to lift someone up.
So it goes through this journey of looking at what’s happened to you and really looking at your life or your childhood and getting very clear on that and then moving to expressing yourself and it’s got phases in the book that just keep on taking you higher and higher. Then it’s got some words that bring back beauty, and kindness and healing in your energy fields.
What are you passionate about today?
Well, most joy is when I see humanity really. So I see it when I hear someone’s story. They might be in a healing session or a workshop and I hear their story and I see them cry and I see the pain it has caused them. To then know that I can move them and that this can change, that’s exciting. So I don’t feel hopeless. Instead, I feel good because we know what we can do.
Then seeing them come out of a workshop or out of a healing, completely transformed and feeling that whatever the grief in their body, and the sorrow, and the sadness has moved, that’s what excites me.
What is something in your future plan that scares you?
Wow, you’ve just made me feel so emotional. I’ve never had this question asked of me and it’s bringing up a lot of emotion. So, this is my answer…not achieving what my mission is. Not being able to break through the glass ceiling that women have. Not being given an opportunity to reach out and do what I’m here to do – heal women and elevate the dignity of women and be able to bring humanity to the planet.
That would be my fear and that is why you’ve caused me to get very emotional. I’ve never been asked that but that would be it.
[Tegan then shares her fear of not achieving all she has to do and how she gets through that fear by having faith that she has all the tools she needs to do the job and whatever else she needs will be provided for her when she needs it.]
That’s the other thing we need to be though. We need to be vulnerable. People struggle being vulnerable because vulnerable means opening up. Of course, when you open up and you share your feelings people struggle with that because then they think their feelings can be abused and people can betray them.
I say to people that when you get to that point where you can be vulnerable, that means people can see you. If I’m shut down you can’t see me because you can’t feel me and you don’t know who I really am, so therefore you people won’t trust me.
Then I say, but that is your gift. You can also feel someone else and then you can feel in and say, “Who can I trust?” with that vulnerability. That makes it safe. I say to people that being vulnerable keeps me safe because I can feel others and I can read them and I’ve been betrayed enough in my life that I should be an expert in it.
I say to people, if you’ve been betrayed then you should be an expert in it and be able to see the traits and where you keep making that mistake and it’s a gift to feel and have that joy and connect and just live.
Five Fast Fun Fearless Facts about Marisa Russo:
- Who inspires you? Oprah, because of what she’s been up against and I love that she’s had such a huge impact on the planet as a woman. I love Abraham Hicks, I think their teachings are awesome. I think anyone who is a strong woman and I guess each person that I meet, the one’s that turn up to my workshops and I think, “Wholly cow, what you’ve overcome, you inspire me.” So we inspire each other. When I see empowered women who just go and do what they’ve got to do.
- Favourite thing to do each day? Would be to grab my ‘Mumma’s boy’ and then I kiss him to death. He’s actually a little bit famous. He has video’s and an article in a magazine. My Mumma’s Boy, which is my cat, that would be it, to hang out with him.
- What's something that still scares you? Negative energy. People that have dark, negative energy and want to get mad at me, that does scare me. Because I am vulnerable, right, because I am open. That’s what I practice is being open and a good conduit so I’m scared of being stuck in a workshop or something, it doesn’t scare me as much because I’ve worked out how to work it but you do get people that want to blame you. And because we get to the truth of where all your stuff comes from and face it, people can get angry at that and so I start to look at, “I’m the creator and I’m the attractor and I need to attract really awesome women” and generally I do but that is something that scares me.
- Favourite technique or app or book? I do have a set of cards on my phone and I’ll find a message and it will be a really awesome message and it tells me something. It brings me peace or makes me aware of something. I love my healing cards and those ones are called John Holland and they’re amazing.
- If you could wave a magic wand and fix one thing in the world right now, what would it be and why? Definitely would be to restore dignity and value to women and bring back equality and let them know they’re worthy and they need to be respected. I believe that would make a big shift because then they would be leading in the world and would be making kind decisions. That’s what I would go and do.
Final Question for Marisa Russo
If you could turn back time what's the one piece of advice you wish you could give your fourteen-year-old self?
Your life does have a purpose and that you are loved and that you are worthy and I would just build confidence. I would tell that little girl, all the good things that she needed to hear and that being abused is wrong, that this isn’t right and that someone should fight for you so that you know you are worth more than this.
BONUS: Energy card chosen from Psychic Healer John Hollands deck of cards – Power – As a spiritual being you have unlimited power at your command. This card represents inner strength, willpower, courage, generosity, and love. At any moment these beautiful qualities can assist you in coping with an adverse condition in front of you or the many surrounding in your life.
What you offer Tegan is that power to them as well. You’re saying we’re here for you, these other women are here for you, you can unite and be a strength together to have power and be inspired by someone to overcome what you’ve overcome and when you hear other people’s stories you say, “Well, they did it, I can do it too.” This message is exactly what you are offering and this is the message for anyone that is listening.
Where can people reach out to you?
Facebook Group – Forensic Healing
A Gift for Listeners From Marisa Russo
Gain access to a four-part video starter course of the award-winning Forensic Healing Structured Natural Therapy System combining science and intuition to release pain, stress, and long-term conditions fast. Uncover the patterns you run in your life, the ages they were embedded and some simple healing techniques to begin your healing journey.