Lillian So is the new best friend you never knew you needed. Author of So Empowered – Discover the five layers of the body to take control of your life, Lillian breaks down the five layers and shares how each and every one of them can be used to transform every aspect of our lives.
In this episode, Lillian shares
• a surprising fact about how pain manifests in the body
• a framework to help us process adversity, whether it was yesterday or decades ago
• small, practical ways to find our bliss
Plus, her final takeaway is pure GOLD.
If you’re someone whose life looks pretty damn good on paper but you just can’t shake the feeling that there’s got to be something more, this episode is definitely for you. Lillian shares the five layers of the body that, frankly, many of us 🙋🏻♀️ have been ignoring and why healing each is the short cut to being our most amazing self.
You are where success comes. Whatever it is, whatever success it is that you want, whether it’s you want to feel or be successful in your career, parenting, business, relationships, marriage, whatever it is that you want to be successful. That’s success comes from you. And so when you are at your optimal, happiest, healthiest state, when you are the best version of yourself, that is when the best outcomes are inevitable is guaranteed. It’s just going to be a side effect actually, as a matter of fact, and that to me is the shortcut that we all need to really understand is that you are aware all of that goodness comes from, so take care of you first. Take care of your five layers, make sure that you are developing your self first and foremost, and the rest will naturally organize around you and mirror that and reflect that.
Five layers of the body
Lillian’s method for processing grief/trauma
- First start with a really simple frame of observation. What happened?
- What did I feel? What was feeling triggered?
- What did I need in that moment or what need was not being met in that moment?
- What is it that I need? What am I really learning from this? What am I learning about myself? What can I do to prevent this in the future? What can I do to take ownership of this moving forward? What can I do to take radical responsibility for my life based on what happened, what I felt, what I needed or what I do?
This is really a simple frame work that we can use for anything when we’re dealing with communication issues with our partners or when we’re actually looking for some kind of resolution. Because I think a lot of times something happens and then we’re like, well, something happened and I’m really upset about it. I’ve acknowledged what I feel. I acknowledged what happened. I’ve acknowledged what I need, but now we need to take that a step further. Now we need to turn that around and we need to change that. There needs to be some kind of transformation. There needs to be some kind of change.
Not only do we acknowledge what happened, but now we can also figure out what we do after we acknowledge that happened. Now, what do we need beyond that? How do we prevent, how do we change? How do we make progress?
Mentioned in this episode
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Lillian So is a Korean-American daughter of immigrants. As the founder of SOfit SF Inc. and the SOmethod, she is a passionate community builder and entrepreneur. An integrator and facilitator of transformation, Lillian helps people heal, grow, transform, and find what they didn’t know was missing in their lives. She has more than 20 years of industry experience creating psychological safety, group facilitation, and compassionate
Starting in early childhood, she felt anxious at family holidays because many family members expressed their “concern” about her weight and size. That led her down a dark path of low self-esteem, body image issues, and eating disorders at a young age. She started dieting and working out when she was barely 11 years old.
By the time she reached high school, she was able to channel that energy into competitive sports and fell in love with fitness, which gave her a great deal of confidence.
That continued through college where Lillian decided to study Exercise Physiology and Kinesiology, and began working in fitness clubs. It was then she knew that she wanted to turn her passion for physical training into a career. In 2007, she moved to San Francisco, where she started working at multiple gyms and stacking her schedule to train 40 clients a week. She quickly achieved her goal of becoming financially secure.
But that’s when things began to slide. Lillian was burning herself out. Her relationships weren’t fulfilling, she didn’t feel seen, loved or appreciated — no matter how hard she worked. She realized her health was declining. And that’s when she had her first panic attack.
That experience sent her into deep self-reflection. She yearned to know why she felt the way she did, seeking to understand her thoughts and behaviors. She asked: “Why am I repeating patterns of miscommunication and frustration in my romantic relationships? Has my childhood and upbringing negatively impacted my relationships, career, and future?” Lillian realized there was more to it and was ready to dig deeper.
That’s when she began to attend to her own self-care. Lillian hired her first acupuncturist and therapist. As she became more grounded and clear-headed, she decided to enroll in yoga teacher training. Within her first week, everything started to click and make sense… this was the missing piece she was looking for.
Lillian’s initial yoga teacher training brought everything together and validated her belief that one’s body is connected to their thoughts, emotions, energy, and how someone perceives themselves. She learned that this influences behaviors, reality, connection to an individual soul’s purpose, or lack thereof.
She was hooked, and after several more trainings and certifications, she became a yoga therapist, which is the highest level you can attain in the field.
She also trained as a mentor in nonviolent communication (NVC). Learning NVC enabled her to hear her own deeper needs and those of others through in depth listening and compassion. She took everything she discovered there and through yoga — and applied it to self-expression, finding her voice, setting boundaries, and communicating her needs. Through NVC, she learned how to be in healthy relationships with everyone in her life.
From there, Lillian was able to incorporate all that into her personal training practice and take it to the next level. It was then that she started to see herself as a facilitator of transformation. Under her direction, clients connected with their physical bodies, thoughts, and feelings, applying all the practices Lillian had learned along her own personal and professional journey, into a seamless integration of health and fitness, mind-body connection, heart-centered communication, and so much more.
After more than a decade of helping hundreds of people transform their lives, Lillian knew that what she offered could benefit many, many more people. So, she committed it all to her new book: So Empowered! Discover the Five Layers of the Body to Take Control of Your Life.
Says Lillian: “I want to teach as many people as possible how everything is connected so they can be healthy and happy in every way. I am committed to helping people get to the bottom of what’s holding them back .I truly believe that by understanding the five layers of the body you can transform every aspect of your life and start seeing and feeling transformation in a short amount of time.”
Check out Lillan’s program The SoMethod.