In the aftermath of his passing, I, a trauma therapist, found myself desperately wanting to pull the bedcovers over my head, to retreat from a world now filled with fear, disorientation, and a new normal I didn’t want to participate in.
However, an unshakable intuition whispered that my pain was not merely a sentence of suffering but a poignant lesson guiding me toward
My roots stretched back to the tumultuous shores
of Rockaway Beach, New York, a quaint coastal community just outside the bustling heart of Manhattan.
My formative years were a tempest of chaos, my parents locked in perpetual strife, their voices like thunderstorms in a relentless battle. The wounds of their own pasts had made them neglectful, even willfully blind to my needs.
So, at the tender age of six, I summoned the courage
to sign myself up for an eight-week sleepaway camp, determined to find a place where the sun shone brighter and the storms remained distant. As the bus rolled away, leaving my mother in tears, I waved back, an intuitive knowing echoing through my mind:
I never spent another summer at home.
In my early forties, I set my sights on becoming a trauma therapist and healing my own shattered nervous system.
I dismantled the survival mechanisms that had once dictated my life, shedding maladaptive behaviors like binge eating and excessive exercise.
I married Bill, falsely believing I was healthy, but the reality quickly unveiled itself: I was codependent, yearning to be rescued rather than stand on my own two feet. And then, in a cruel twist of fate, he was suddenly ripped from my grasp, shattering my world into a million fragments.
The pain was excruciating, enough to understand that the only way to survive it was to surrender. I made a solemn pact with myself to resist the pull of the dark abyss and committed to allowing transformation to happen, rather than being a victim to my circumstances.
And so I did, with no clear direction, only the unshakeable belief that my purpose would continue to be in service to others. Little did I anticipate the remarkable path that lay before me…
Effortlessly and without premeditation, I found myself intertwined with a community of young tech founders
Suddenly, I was hosting monthly gatherings for 20 to 30 maverick entrepreneurs in my own home, offering them the wisdom of my experiences. I helped them navigate both their inner and outer worlds, merging my skills as an investor and professional therapist. The role, to my surprise, filled me with passion and purpose.
Last year, I revisited Italy, a place that held
special meaning for Bill and I. It was there, amidst the backdrop of his cherished memories, that
I realized I had journeyed to a better place, confident and secure within myself.
The anxious child turned adult who had never
felt valued or secure emerged as a figure of empowerment. The widow once gripped by the fear of descending into the abyss now stands in the radiant light of self-discovery and expansion.
Trusted Confidante, Truth Advisor, & Secret
Weapon For Successful Tech Founders & Entrepreneurs. Champion for Your Success
Ilene Smith is an author, a successful entrepreneur, investor and champion for the success of entrepreneurs & founders. With a rich professional tapestry that includes two master’s degrees and extensive training in somatic therapy, Ilene specializes in helping business leaders embody resilience and fortitude.
Her strength in the face of adversity allowed her to overcome significant early life traumas and the sudden loss of her late husband. These challenges served to reinforce her core belief–“Life is going to happen, it’s how you receive the pain and information and how you choose to move forward that matters.”
Ilene is committed to facilitating personal transformation for entrepreneurs as well as future business leaders so they can achieve peak performance and experience success professionally & personally. Her journey has harnessed her ability to masterfully guide entrepreneurs & founders into embracing their intuitive intelligence to trust their decisions and lead without fear.
Beyond her professional endeavors, Ilene is a passionate connoisseur of life. A health enthusiast, outdoor lover, art collector and fervent traveler, she savors experiences that contribute to her growth th and broaden her perspective.
Trauma impacts you beyond your brain. It gets trapped in your body and you must learn to let it free. In my eBook, I define trauma and share the importance of bringing your body into the healing process through Somatic Experiencing (SE).