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Ep. 68: Fat Girls Dance (among other things) with Cathleen Meredith

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Cathleen Meredith and I had an INCREDIBLE conversation about all things SELF ACCEPTANCE and I'm so excited for you to listen to it!

We chatted about all things self love, dance as a spiritual practice, breathwork, neuroplasticity, psychoneuroimmunology, the body positivity movement, gratitude, overachiever syndrome, taking up space, AND SO MUCH MORE.

Cathleen Meredith's heartwork is the Fat Girls Dance Movement, a social experiment and movement that she started in 2016, where a group of plus-sized women participated in one professionally choreographed challenging dance each week for 52 weeks.

The goal? To put themselves through 52 dances and continue to show up and do things they were scared of and didn't think they could do for an entire year. It was an incredibly empowering success and Cathleen is coming out with a book called Fat Girls Dance to tell the story behind it that will be released later this year.

I realized that dance was a metaphor for everything. Fat girls dance, yeah. Fat girls also date, have sex and enjoy themselves. Fat girls actually workout. Yeah, we're fat AND we're working out. Fat girls do all the things that other people do, but the idea behind living in a fat body is that you're supposed to be quiet, invisible, sexless, hate yourself and be unhealthy.

Cathleen Meredith is a writer, influencer, public speaker and positivity ignitor originally from Sacramento, California. She is passionate about theatre, dance, Mexican food, non-profit work, unicorns, traveling, bacon, and all other things awesome sauce.

In August of 2016, she launched FATGIRLSDANCE™, "A Worldwide Movement Bent on Trashing Body Image Perceptions through the Universal Language of DANCE." It has gone viral. In May 2017 released a 3-minute film on the project with Dove Real Beauty Productions and Shonda Rhimes. In January 2018, she launched The Naked Podcast with Dr. Stacy Berman and producer Raveen Battee, which discusses bodies, minds, and the science behind what we think. She is currently working with The Ohio State University on a media project that works towards the eradication of obesity bias in the medical community.

Cathleen and her movement has been featured on NBC Today, The Real TV Daytime show, Essence, Healthline, HelloGiggles, MicMedia, and countless other publications.

Cathleen is currently completing FATGIRLSDANCE the book, and despite all the buzz about Cathleen as a dancer, in her mind, she’s a writer first.

Cathleen is also the CEO and founder of CM Creative Labs, a marketing and branding firm serving women and POC through presence creation, brand launching, and influencer development.

When Cathleen is not writing, she's actively working on changing the world. She is a volunteer at The Dream Center Harlem and a developer of several free performing arts programs such as Harlem’s first teen Shakespeare Festival in partnership with Classic Theatre of Harlem. She maintains a residence in New York City.

I love her.

She's frickin' fantastic.

If you listen to this episode, you will quickly agree with me I'm sure.

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We as fat women are supposed to be wallflowers. We're supposed to sit in the back. Be invisible. Taking up space is incongruent with people. It doesn't sit well with them that we are so comfortable in this large body.

In this episode, we talked about:

  • Cathleen's love for dance and her experience as a "fat woman" in a NY Dance class and the reaction of other women in the class to her abilities.

  • The journey to self love and a common belief we hold as women

  • How to get rid of the self hating thoughts

  • Psychoneuroimmunology and what happens in the brain when we speak kindly to and of ourselves

  • Neuroplasticity and how it relates to the Body Positivity Movement

  • "Hustle and Grind Culture" and how that's impacting our health and wellbeing

  • Busy as a badge of honour

  • Breathwork and how to use it to settle your nervous system and get out of your head

  • Fat Girls Dance, the book!

  • The power of watching yourself dance and looking at your body in the mirror

  • How action "kicks the ass out of the fuck you fairies in your head"

  • How taking action helps you shift the ideologies about yourself in your brain

  • What living on purpose means to Cathleen

  • One thing people can do today to love themselves more

  • And so much MORE!!!

Some of the resources we mentioned in this episode were:

I absolutely LOVED this conversation with Cathleen, and I cannot wait to bring on more, wonderful guests in the future for you to learn from!!

Do me a solid?? If this episode helped you in any way, would you go rate and review it on your Apple Podcast app? Share it with a friend! Take a screenshot, send a text, whatever you need to do to help ONE person hear this message today.

I’m on a mission to empower as many women as possible in their health, wealth and wellness through this free educational platform and spreading the word about the podcast is the best way I know how to get these important topics into more womens’ headphones and lives!

We can do better together.

Until next time,

Xo Marie

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