#holidayhopestories – Sandra’s Story
Hello there! I’m Sandra Corso, Life Strategist, Retreat Leader, and Champion of Women’s Independence at SuddenlyFree.Life and I help suddenly single women embrace their newfound independence, so they can stop feeling like a passenger in somebody else’s life, and start driving their own! After having been 2/3 of the way around the world, I’ve found myself back in the woods near my hometown in West Central Georgia, but the travel junkie in me is always on the lookout for the next place to call home!
How did you get started?
I woke up one morning about two years ago, with the most intriguing idea: Therapeutic Travel! I imagined a journey that was part culture, part humanitarian aid, part adventure, designed to wedge women out of their comfort zone, and challenge them to learn new things about themselves. I wanted to foster independence, confidence, and self-respect in a way that would make sure these women would never feel like they weren’t enough on their own. And SuddenlyFree.Life was born!
What did you have to overcome to take the steps towards doing what you love?
There were many challenges in making this work. Some were financial, but many were internal. ‘Who am I to think I can do this?’ ‘Who’d want to go with ME, when there were so many other choices?’ ‘How do I even make this work?’ And then there were others, telling me that ‘You can’t even think about retreats until you have a full load of coaching clients.’ ‘Retreats are fun, but they’re not profitable.’ And dozens and dozens of well-meaning coaches telling me you have to do it this way, and this way, and this way. It’s enough to make your head spin! But then I stumbled upon a program that taught me ‘Yes, you CAN do it your way, profitably, and here’s how!’
What or who inspires you each day?
I’m inspired by so many people on a daily basis! While many would name public figures, my heroines are people I have a personal relationship with. Women like Christie Mims, and Keisha Dixon, and Sheri Rosenthal, who are all amazing coaches in their own right! And the many other strong, independent women who have influenced my life over the years, including my aunt, Charlotte Perry; an amazing teacher and close personal friend, Clarice Alford; and my neighbor during the four years I lived in Italy, Lidia Dameretta Bottaro, who was exactly the warm, accepting, compassionate mother figure I’d always needed. I can’t even imagine who I would be today without the influence of these awesome women!
What is your favourite quote or affirmation?
Perhaps my favorite inspirational quote comes from a song by Halestorm (Yes, I’m that crazy old lady who still listens to metal!). The song is called ‘I Am The Fire’ and really speaks to the journey I’ve been on for the past year or so, but the line I love most is ‘I am the one I’ve been waiting for.’ I mean, how many of us spend our lives looking ‘out there’ for someone who has the answers we need, only to realize, hopefully before it’s too late, that WE are the answer? And that we don’t need anybody’s permission to be who we are.
Do you have a morning [or daily] routine - what is it and how does it serve you?
My daily ‘routine’ varies, mostly depending on what I wake up thinking about, but one constant is that I always start the day with vitamins and lots of water. Plagued for decades with low energy and increasing degrees of brain fog, I finally figured out the right combination, and my morning supplement routine is non-negotiable! Now I can face the day feeling energetic, present, and alive, all necessary to accomplish my mission in life of leading women to LOVE life on their own!
Share one or two of your best moments from the past year!
One of the coolest things that happened this year was stumbling upon a travel article that provided inspiration for my first international retreat! While everybody I knew was planning retreats to Sedona, or Mexico, or Costa Rica, or Bali, or Tuscany, I wanted to do something different! I’d been looking for the right place, and when it landed in my inbox, I thought it was too good to be true! It wasn’t! The wheels are already in motion, and I am soooo looking forward to putting this together!
What big goal(s) do you have for 2019?
Which brings me to the thing I’m most excited about for 2019! Imagine spending eight days in an ancient castle, surrounded by awe-inspiring views of the Tyrrhenian Sea, enjoying tantalizing cuisine and wonderful adventures, immersed in the Italian culture, all while learning to embrace your independence and put YOU in charge of your life! Doesn’t that sound awesome? Well, welcome to Ischia! I’ll be providing that experience for 10 amazing women in October of 2019!