Inspirational Woman: Dr Amanda Foo-Ryland | Coach, Author & Founder, Your Life Live It

Amanda Foo-Ryland

Dr Amanda Foo-Ryland is a TedX international keynote speaker, coach and best-selling author of Knowing You.

She is a neural coding expert, and the founder of Your Life Live It, and together with her team she works with thousands of clients around the globe to help them achieve lasting personal change.

Please tell us a bit about yourself, your background and your current role. How did you get started in your current role, and starting your business Your Life Live It?

I am an international coach, speaker, author and founder of “Your Life Live It” – a globally represented coaching business. Since the age of 19, I have been in human development, starting my career with the cosmetic company Estee Lauder Corporation. I worked with the training department looking at the psychology of purchase, the psychology of service and the type of service we offered our customers at Estee Lauder.

My first two years with the company saw me working in Rackhams department store in Bradford, before I worked my way up through the ranks. By the time I left Estee Lauder Corporation, I was Clinique’s Director of Education for Europe, Middle East and Africa. As you can imagine, my territory was rather large. Working as the Director of Education meant that my job was to ensure that all our staff were operating at the best level they could possibly operate. This naturally took me into the world of looking at how we think and what it is that we can alter in order to allow us to make incredible change within ourselves.

The corporation offered me a promotion to go and work in their Head Office in New York, however I turned it down as it just wasn’t the right time for me. In fact, it was then that I actually made the decision to leave Estee Lauder after 16 years and further my personal studies in Neuro Linguistic Programming. I am now a Trainer of neuro linguistic programming, timeline therapy, and clinical hypnotherapy.

I applied everything I learned previously in my career and honed in on how we think really affects how we show up in the world. I did my life coaching diploma with Newcastle University and started working as a life coach. However, it didn’t really feel as though it was enough. I was able to help people on work-life balance and help senior executives make the right decisions, but if somebody was operating on something like a limiting belief, I didn’t have the toolbox of skills or processes to be able to help them with that. This is why I dove deeper into the neurolinguistic programming world – now neural coding.

My current role with Your Life Live It sees me working with companies in London, through to kids in New Zealand. My mission is to empower people to live passionately. We only get one life, it’s happening right now and not always the way we want it. So when things get tough, I provide people with the tools and life experience to help them get out of it, no matter how deep it is. I love life, health and most of all humans!

Did you ever sit down and plan your career?

I didn’t plan my career as such, however, I have always had a passion for people and this has naturally evolved throughout my career. Having turned down the promotion for Estee Lauder, I had to decide where to go from there. A lot of thought and planning went into what I was going to do in terms of my studies.

Can you share with us the most interesting story from your career? What lessons or ‘take aways’ you learned from that?

What I realise is that it doesn’t really matter what business we’re in. Whether it’s cosmetics, an engineering company I’m working with down in the South Island of New Zealand, or whether it’s another company I am working with that produces cookies, one thing that’s really clear is that I’m in the business of people. And therefore, it doesn’t matter what industry it is, as all people worry about the same things. It’s things like ‘Am I good enough?’, ‘Am I going to get caught out?’ There’s a lot of anxiety – and much more since Covid.

I think my biggest lesson really was from Leonard Lauder – the son of Mrs. Estee Lauder. One thing I always really enjoyed and noticed when doing store visits with Leonard was that he was really kind to people. He always caught them doing something right.

After doing store visits in Dublin, I said to him that I had noticed that he always gave a compliment to every single person he came into contact with. One example was him saying to someone ‘Gosh, you’ve polished your shoes today. Thank you so much for doing that. It’s not something we asked you to do, but we really appreciate you doing that. You are a fantastic ambassador for our company.”

Leonard told me that it is about catching people doing something right, and ignoring the bits that are not so nice. Of course, if they need support and help, we’ll help them with that. But that was a big lesson for me. It started off as quite a basic observation, but now I’m in the field working with corporations, in contact with lots and lots of people on a regular basis. Whether it is a policewoman, a policeman, or a CEO of a corporation, people have very similar problems. It’s just a matter of really helping them understand how they can reverse and change their limiting beliefs.

What do you consider to be one of your greatest achievements?

I think it is definitely my TEDx talk hitting over a million views! It’s one thing to do a TED talk – it’s on a lot of speakers’ to-do lists – but to see it hit 1.4 million views was a really exciting point in my career. Then being shortlisted for the best TED talk and being highly commended by the judges was a big celebration moment.

I would also like to reflect on probably one of the first clients that I worked with after the Christchurch earthquake. I was working with a little five-year-old girl that was naturally really afraid to enter any building because she had learned that buildings fall down. Just being able to work with her for an hour with her mum, and to be able to literally reframe and transform what being safe was all about for that little girl was truly rewarding. Again, this was me holding the remote control with a toolbox that I know works and the little girl following the instructions. From a little girl not even wanting to enter the practice, to a little girl giggling every time we talked about the walls moving – obviously being safe within that space – was a big penny drop for me. I realised just how powerful my toolbox was. I thought if we can do that for a five-year-old, imagine what we can do for people that have endured lifelong pain, where they feel as though they are unfixable and change is not for them. I am here to say, it absolutely is!

Personally, what do you think are the three skills that have carried you through to where you are now?

I think Ed Sheeran said it – he said: ‘I’m an 18-year overnight success’. A lot of people think that Ed Sheeran just popped up from nowhere and that he was this young kid that just got the right break. In actual fact, if you research him he’s been writing songs every single day since he was 12. I feel the same. I believe that is what has made Your Life Live It successful. It is just me finding my passion. It is a daily commitment and is really easy because it’s just what I do and what I love. It is about finding your passion and being committed to it and then literally working on it every day to enhance and improve it.

The second thing is being really open to listening to what people have got to say. I’ve got lots of mentors that helped me with the business. I also believe it is really important to gain feedback on how we can improve. So, I hop on a call with every single student that goes through our ultimate transformational course online, to find out how we can be better for future students. I feel that listening to feedback and really inviting people to share things that might be uncomfortable, allows us to enhance, grow, develop and evolve.

The third thing, I think, is the feedback. If we get a really lovely review on Trustpilot, that absolutely fills my heart. It’s knowing that I have the toolbox that allows clients to change and reveal their magic.

I think being humble around that and realising the clients are the genius ones and all I’ve got is the remote control. I know how that works and I can teach anyone how to use that remote control.

Just one other point – I’m also very mindful. Back in 2005 when I got my toolbox, I was literally the only one walking down the beach throwing the starfish back into the ocean. Whereas now there’s 26 of us at Your Life Live It walking down the beach together, collectively being able to throw a lot more starfish back in the ocean so that they can survive and flourish. My objective is to build a community with the right people around us to be able to help us create unthinkable change.

You are dedicated to helping people identify, delete and replace their limiting beliefs. It’s a process that you call neural coding. Please can you explain the benefit that being free of limiting beliefs can have on a person’s life?

So I think the first thing that deleting and replacing limiting beliefs does is just giving people freedom to fully be who they are. It allows them to show up in the space and be really comfortable with that, instead of playing detective all the time trying to work out what the best thing to say is so people don’t find out that they’re not good enough, or they’re a failure, or whatever their personal belief might be.

One of the things I find really powerful to do with a client, is to have them run through a couple of different processes that are super simple, that allow them to identify and really uncover what their limiting belief is. Then we spend some time designing the new empowering belief. It’s not just saying “I am good enough”, I literally get the client to become the architect of the new empowering belief. By having an awareness of what the limiting belief is, you can then see it showing up in other areas because you have conscious awareness of it. I get my clients to come up with some amazing word code around what their new empowering belief is. They really become their own designers.

Ultimately, the lower down the belief structure we can get to what is the core limiting belief a person is operating from, the bigger the transformation.

How does neural coding work – the process of deleting a belief and replacing it with another work?

To create unthinkable change you need to delete limiting beliefs and install ones that serve you better. There are several steps to carry out in neural coding and the first one is to know that you are being programmed. We are constantly being subjected to mind viruses, letting unwelcome and limiting beliefs come into our neurology. Knowing this happens is an important first step.

The second step is to see the limiting belief for what it is. For example, they are installed before the age of seven, they become a truth for us. Most of the important work that we do with clients is to identify the limiting belief, this is key as it runs out of conscious awareness so if the client can name it, then that is not it. This is not something a person can just ‘do’. It is important to have guidance on this element as it is so important and Knowing You does that..

The process of neural coding is part of making wider changes too. For example, make sure you choose your tribe wisely. The people around you all have an impact on you. Ask yourself whether a person encourages you or puts you down? Do they energise and brighten your mood, or do they drain you? Throughout life, it’s worthwhile being mindful of this.

You also need to look at the way you speak to yourself. Is your inner voice encouraging, or is it constantly finding faults? Be ruthless when it comes to deleting self talk that doesn’t serve you.

Lastly, think about what you do want in life, as opposed to what you don’t want. Daydream about your future, and in your mind visualise what life could be like.

You recently wrote a book, Knowing You. Please can you tell us a little bit about the book and why you chose to write it?

I’ve spent years in personal development – physically in it, being a facilitator in it, reading about it, and going and seeing people speak about it. What I’ve realised is there’s one key component that seems to be missed. I think a lot of personal development work looks at symptoms. However, if we really look at the cause of the symptoms, and get to the root cause of the problem, then we don’t need to keep taking the medicine to try and stop the symptoms from showing up.

I believe that’s what Knowing You is all about. It’s literally taking the reader on a journey to find the cause of the symptoms, rather than just what they feel are the daily symptoms of whatever it is they are experiencing at the time.

So I think it takes them by the hand on a journey using client case studies. The way in which I write is very much like I am sitting on the sofa chatting with you. It is very easy to read.

The book takes the reader by the hand and takes them on a journey, which takes some bravery, because what we’ve got to look at is what the root cause of the problem is, not the symptoms. Then, when we get to the root cause, which is a limiting belief, the symptoms take care of themselves.

Do you have exciting plans or projects coming up that we should know about?

My new book is out at the end of January and my first book is going to be republished by Rethink Press which will also be coming out next year. I have been invited over to Dallas to do a talk there –  which is going to be filmed. I am also recording an audio book which is being recorded in February in London.

As well as that, we are launching a new website for Your Life Live It, and working at building my speaking career in the northern hemisphere. I’ve already established it down in the southern hemisphere, but spending time now in Europe, that’s quite exciting for me.

Additionally, I am excited that I have found some really cool mentors around me in the UK. I didn’t really know where to look, but of course, the universe just provides the right person at the right time! 

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