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Life’s Little Detours: How do you embrace them?

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The following is from EMBRACING INTENSITY:


This week’s interview is with Amy Oestreicher, author, global speaker, actress, arts entrepreneur and Jill-of-all-trades. When we first connected, I was inspired by her TED talk called Follow Your Detour, Find Your Flower, where she shares her story of a succession of unexpected detours in her life starting with her stomach literally exploding right before senior prom. 

After each detour in her life, she describes a flower that she picked up along the way – grattitude, identity reimagined, feeling, expression, courage and invincible identity.

Though I can’t say my detours have been nearly as dramatic, I can definitely relate to having everything change just as you think you’ve got everything figured out.

Nine years ago, everything seemed to be going right on track. I had a job I was good at that helped others. I was on the board of a theatre community and I was expecting my first child. 

Within the span of a few months, I went through an unexpected divorce with a colicky baby, started a new job that was much more more paperwork than actually working with kids and between everything else going on I just could not maintain my involvement in the theatre, which was my primary social outlet. 

But here’s the thing…

If I hadn’t gotten a divorce, I would have never met my amazing husband who loves me for my quirks not despite them.

If I hadn’t had a colicky and now intense child, I would have never learned about over-excitability, which helped not only me, but many others who follow my work come to terms with the gifts to be found in intensity instead toning down or tuning out. 

If I hadn’t started questioning the meaning of my “day-job” I would have never connected with my true purpose, which is to help gifted and intense women use their gifts effectively in the world. 

And if I hadn’t lost my primary social connection, I would have never found my way back to my Unitarian Universalist roots where I have found the most amazing community of support for both myself and my son. 

In the midst of our detours, we may not see the flowers, but they are planted in the earth waiting to sprout and bloom!

If you happen to be in New York this month, you can see Amy’s one woman musical Gutless & Grateful Comes to Internationally Acclaimed Metropolitan Room March 26th, 2017 – or visit her website for upcoming touring dates. 

23: Using the Gift of Intensity to Survive Trauma with Amy Oestreicher


For the intense woman, life’s unexpected heartbreaks, tragedies, and traumas can feel like the end of the world. When life takes a detour, it is difficult to bounce back, especially when it feels like everything around you has come crumbling down. How do we deal with these roadblocks? Is it possible to ever fully recover from trauma?


If you are a trauma survivor, (or just a human in general) then this week’s guest has a message that will get right the heart of the matter. Amy Oestreicher is a survivor: a survivor of sexual assault, a survivor of a disease that left her without a stomach, and a survivor in life. Using the power of creativity and gratitude, Amy has come back from the brink of death with a love of life that is unlike anything you’ve ever seen. In this week’s episode of “Embracing Intensity,” Amy describes her road to recovery, and how she learned to embrace life’s detours and find what it means to be herself. Be inspired this week and take a dive into a story of human resilience!

Also in this week’s episode:

  • Amy shares how her love of musical theater, fine art, and writing have shaped her recovery process.
  • Hear the story of Amy’s biggest detour, losing her stomach.
  • Learn how the story of recovery is universal.
  • Healthy coping tools for trauma survivors
  • Using creativity to put in the hard work of recovery
  • Practicing gratitude and transforming your outlook on life.
  • Hear how Amy’s family and intense childhood gave her the tools she needed to overcome adversity.
  • The ways Amy “gets out of her head,” and embraces her own intensity.

Amy Recommends

Waking the Tiger by Peter Levine

My Beautiful Detour by Amy Oestreicher is available for Pre-order this spring!


Amy’s Website: Amy Oes

Connect with Amy on Twitter: @amyoes

Amy’s Ted Talk

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