How I Was Supported by Cedarwood Essential Oil

When I left the church, I floundered. I had just moved 1,000 miles from “home.” I knew nobody. My marriage was crap – we had decided to try again after a separation. I had just JUST given birth to our fourth baby (moved when she was 7 weeks old).

My community was gone. The church was the center of my community for most of my life and now it wasn’t safe. I had recognized the trauma it had caused. Toxic fundamentalism was the root of so many of our issues.

I turned to my oils.

Cedarwood was speaking to me. The oil of community. Cedarwood was one of the oils that helped me work through the crap, put up good boundaries, and build a loving community again – one based on true connections rather than propriety (not the easiest thing to find in the south).

It wasn’t easy. I felt like I didn’t fit in. I didn’t fit in. In an area where an introduction goes like “Hi! I’m so-and-so! What’s your name? What church do you go to?” Yeah – not many people had the emotional ability to hear my truth. And that’s ok. Not my tribe.

Cedarwood helped me be open to those nos and to wait for the yeses. Bonus – cedarwood helps our bodies with appropriate melatonin production which has been helpful with four little ones at bedtime. It is also our tantrum buster as it can support the fight/flight response.

If you’d like to get your hands on some cedarwood oil, feel free to email me at audramichellewrites @ gmail . com (without the spaces) so I can help you save the most money. Or simply use the shopping cart I have set up in this link to get yours to try.

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Easter Is Coming

Easter is coming. How are you doing?

Holidays after toxicity can be difficult. Many times, we struggle with emotions that pop up that others just simply don’t understand. We find ourselves putting a smile on our faces and going through the motions all while screaming inside.

You don’t have to do this alone. Come and join the community in the Belief Exploration Group. Dig in to aspects of church toxicity and fundamentalism and take steps to healing those wounds.

Join me. We are stronger, together.

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Return That Negative Energy

I hate shopping for myself. I hate it. HATE. IT. I get overwhelmed very easily and get stuck in the cycle of perfection or freeze. I go round and round about what if the outfit I’m choosing isn’t right? Or doesn’t fit the same after it’s washed? Or doesn’t look as good as I think it does? What if I’m wasting money? Why are there no clothes made for someone as short as I am? What if I gain weight soon? Lose weight? Should I just wait until I’m stable?

Hate. It.

So, I sent shopping back. I started doing clothing subscription boxes. I can select styles I like and try a few selections in my home. I can wear that pair of jeans for an hour to see if they will end up baring my ass or not. I can try that blazer on with other pieces in my wardrobe to see if it actually goes with anything. And then I return what I don’t like.

Our emotions and energies can be overwhelming, just like shopping is for me. Up until age 12-ish, kids have a very hard time distinguishing whose emotions they are feeling. They are sensitive to energies – moreso than adults who have been taught to silence that part of themselves. But as adults, we can re-learn how to sort through the emotions that are sending us off kilter. Having tools to deal with what we uncover is crucial.

Here is a very short guided meditation exercise to help with just that. Once you do it with me a few times, you’ll be able to do it on your own any time you are feeling off. You can teach your children how to do the same. It’s amazing how much other people’s negative emotions can affect us – especially those of us who are empaths.

Take 10 minutes and return that negative energy.

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Am I a Satan Worshipper?

Am I a satan worshipper because I question churches? I actually had someone ask that. I have had many people tell me that what I went through didn’t happen. The fact that I have healed and am shedding light in dark places makes people uncomfortable. Makes them mad.

It’s hard for people to wrap their brains around how some place that is supposed to be safe can hurt people. Sure, the sex scandals make sense, but not much else. Our trauma is minimized.

I’m here to talk about choices and healing. We can’t heal the world until we heal ourselves.

Let’s have a conversation. How can I help you? The conversation is the first step toward reclaiming yourself and finding freedom.

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I Started This Business Because….

What a fun prompt! But as I started working through it, can opened – worms everywhere!

When I talk about humanity and people being treated well and loved, I tend to get fired up. The whole reason why I started Integrative Religion Recovery was to help people who had not been loved in the very place that should be loving all – the church.

Religion should not be used as a weapon. Religion should not be used to hurt.

I am here to help. Let’s have a conversation about how to get your power and identity back. Fill out the form below to schedule a 15 minute connection call to start your journey toward healing.

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My Kids Are Loud

loud kids

Growing up, I heard a lot about how kids should be seen and not heard. I didn’t get that from my parents. They encouraged us to be ourselves. It was ok if we got loud. We weren’t expected to always be quiet or anything like that.

Our worth lies in more than our salvation and the ability to “get others saved.” Those who may not be “saved” or who others may deem “unsaved” still have worth. Have gifts. My daughter likes to sing like Buddy the Elf. And that blesses others.

I was told recently that unless someone is saved and others agree that they are saved, then they cannot have a moral compass. That only “tried and true christians” have any sense of morality. I call horseshit on that.

Everyone has something to offer to humanity. Everyone.

Let’s shine as the amazing people we are! #humanityrising

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My Apology

Homosexuality is a sin, right? We are to love the sinner and hate the sin, right? But what if that’s not accurate? What if a deeper study of translations and culture surrounding the time when scriptures were written reveals otherwise? Or what if the focus is shifted to simply loving everyone as they are and trusting that God is big enough to work in hearts.

I know many will disagree. That’s ok. It’s taken me a long time and a lot of research and self-work to get to where I am today. And for those who choose to see this as a move backwards – that’s your choice. I choose to focus on love and support without having a list of criteria that makes someone “worthy” of love or salvation.

Want to start diving in to bible translations and what they say about LGBTQIA+? Click on through and read more. Don’t agree with it? That’s ok. Let’s just stop weaponizing scripture to tear others down.

Want to start looking into your faith and religion and figure out what you believe? Let’s have a conversation to see what program is the best fit for you. Contact me for your 15 minute connection call.

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Religion VS Faith

Wait – religion and faith aren’t the same thing?

Nope. They are different.

Religion – a personal set or institutionalized system of religious attitudes, beliefs, and practices.

Faith – something that is believed especially with strong conviction

Faith is the heart – the belief in something or someone. Religion is the social construct surrounding the faith.

So, now that we got that out of the way – on to the real reason I am writing.

I’ve gotten a lot of flack for starting this Integrative Religion Recovery practice. I’m anti-church. I’m an atheist. I have no moral compass. I just need to get back into a church. What I went through in church didn’t really happen like I remember it – I’ve exaggerated it over time.

Nope. Sorry. None of that is true.

You see – there’s that difference between faith and religion. I have faith in God (though it does look much different now than it did 10 years ago, but is there anyone whose faith has remained unchanged over a decade?) but I have little to no faith in the religious systems that abound. Sure – churches (and religious institutions of other faiths) are made up of humans and humans are sinful and fail. They make bad decisions. But sometimes it goes beyond simple human failures.

Sometimes there is a conscious decision to lead a flock astray. Maybe it’s for power. Maybe money. Maybe fame or notoriety. Sometimes the rise to power and the controlling and manipulation of the congregants is a product of a very warped system. This second point is how seemingly good churches (or institutions) become dangerous.

Sadly, I’ve seen and been involved with churches that have become dangerous. I’ve seen it take time- like a slowly creeping fog of confusion. I’ve seen it happen abruptly with the firing of all staff and a sudden fresh start.

Are you at risk? Could your religious institution be corrupt? Are there warning signs that it is headed down that path? Or, have you been in a church that was dangerous and now you are afraid to step back in?

Understanding the techniques used – knowingly or not – is key. Knowledge is power. With knowledge, you can determine if it is a church that is losing its way a bit or if there is something deeper and more sinister going on.

Join me for a look inside the world of cults. Discover what methods are used for manipulation and brainwashing. Dive into some case studies. Gather tools to prevent being taken in by groups like these. Click through this image to learn more about this amazing program.


What questions do YOU have about cults? Let me know in the comments!

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What to Expect from Coaching

what to expect from coaching

What is this whole life coaching thing and how am I doing it differently?

Coaching comes in more flavors than Baskin Robins ice cream. You can find business coaches, life coaches, relationship coaches, and every specialization you can imagine within those and more.

How do I specialize?

I focus my counseling in two basic ways:

  • individual life coaching
  • religion self-recovery

I help you find your true self and create goals with action steps that move you toward the life you want. My job is to listen to what you aren’t saying, piece it together with your words, and help you see both the bigger picture and a deeper truth. I’m not here to tell you what to do or what is best for you. I’m here to help you sift through life and the noise to find your best path and to help you stay accountable with the action steps we create.

I spent 10 years in a cult and the past 6 years recovering. I am very good at helping people find themselves again after getting out of an unhealthy religious organization. I am very good at helping people take the faith steps that are right for them – either with walking away from the religion or stepping back in but in a healthy way.

How Does It Work?

  1. We have a free 15 minute conversation to see if we are a good fit and I have a program that is a good fit for you.
  2. For either individual or group work, we have an intake session where we get to know each other a bit and start figuring out what goals we want to set.
  3. We create a plan with action steps. We include the integrative items that interest you (essential oils, journaling, meditation, affirmations, yoga, etc)
  4. We meet according to the package purchased and work toward achieving the goals.

What do I Get Out of It?

  • Increased clarity on your core self
  • Greater self-confidence
  • Attainable goals that fit your true self
  • A step by step plan to reach your goals
  • Accountability and compassionate support

But more than anything, you get yourself back. No matter if you’ve been hurt by a church or have been knocked around a bit by life, working with me can help you find yourself again.

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Thank You, 2018

As I woke up New Year’s Eve morning, I lazily scrolled through Facebook. I happened upon my memories. I found a super cute video of my kids, so much smaller, doing their own ball drop. But I also found something else that caught my attention.

I started reading my past musings of the changing of the year. I noticed a shocking trend. Each year, I ended the year saying something to the effect of “Good Riddance! I can’t wait for the new year!”

I get it. I was ready for a new start each year. Some years were harder than others. In general, I wanted the pain from the last year to go away and the new year to be filled with amazing love and happiness.

But the reality is that there will always be pain. Each year will bring happiness and grief. The pain we experience causes growth.

I submit to you that I have been approaching each new year in a less-than-helpful way. I’ve started each year with a negative. Good riddance! I bet I’m not the only one who eagerly wished away the past year, focusing on the negatives.

Join me in a challenge.

I am challenging myself to thank the hard times. Thank those times for the experience and the lessons. For the growth. Thank 2018 for the rough times – for what they taught you and thank 2018 for the amazing gifts it gave. Honor it. And then move on.

2018 was full of incredibly difficult life changes. I got divorced and then un-divorced. I was forced to take a hard look at every aspect of life and relationships. 2018 taught me my strength. It helped me clarify my own values and helped me slow down. 2018 helped me grow in gratitude.

I wish I could have avoided the pain that came last year, but since I cannot wish it away, I can be grateful. I am thankful for the person 2018 has taught me to be. I wouldn’t want to be any different.

2018 – thank you. Thank you for your beauty. Thank you for your fun. And thank you for your trials. Thank you for challenging me to grow and be a better me. I send you off with love. 2019 – welcome. I welcome you warmly. May you be filled with love and prosperity. May we grow to the person able to weather your obstacles. Welcome.

I challenge you to intentionally and positively send off 2018 and welcome 2019. Start the year off with the best energy possible.

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