After Years Of Battling An Eating Disorder & Others’ Expectations, Saying “YES” To Myself Set Me On The Path To Recovery & My Dreams

Francesca Alejandra. Image by Peter Zelinka

By Francesca Alejandra

I grew up trying to fulfill everyone’s expectations of me. I was always the smartest and best-behaved girl in the class. Growing up in my home country Chile, I was surrounded by powerful women in my family who made me feel that I couldn’t be any less. However, my quest for perfection got me sick at the age of thirteen and since then I struggled with eating disorders for the next twenty years. 

During those two decades I did everything I could to fit in. I knew I had to go to college, get married, have kids, have a successful career and make a decent amount of money. So I went to college and studied for a traditional career, since my dream of being an actor was quickly ruled out by my parents. I graduated as a Physical Therapist and majored in Sport science. As time went by and not being able to find a job that I liked and paid well, I started to feel the weight of being a failure.

My life was a failure. I hated my career and didn’t have enough money to pay for my own apartment. I was also single so there were no hopes of me getting married any time soon, let alone having kids. I started to feel depressed and empty. I was sick of my life, sick of the pressure of being something that I wasn’t, sick of my eating disorders, sick of not feeling like I belonged.  

I had the desire to move to the US for years, but I was trying to find “the right time” and the “right way”. My need for control and security were so rooted in me that I couldn’t move pass my fears. I always found excuses when I wanted to do anything that involved taking risks. 

One day I hit rock bottom and I decided it was time to take chances and for once being in charge of my own life. I moved to the US without a plan, just like that. I went looking for the missing pieces, looking for healing, looking for the real me that got lost 20 years ago. 

I never thought of how impactful one single decision can be. It turned my entire life around – those twenty second of courage of saying YES to adventure and buying a plane ticket, saying YES to the magnificent unknown and leaving my entire life behind, saying YES to what life had in store for me. 

Taking that brave leap of faith transformed my entire perspective of life and gave me the courage to keep taking courageous action, one after the other. 

The beauty of choosing something that feels expansive is that you can’t measure all the magical and amazing experiences you will gain in return. Having become a person that makes decisions based on my own personal authority and what feels expansive in my heart, I can say without a doubt that what was on the other side of that decision is a million times better than what I expected. Every. Single. Time. 

After almost six years of making the most crucial decision of my life, I not only overcame my eating disorders, but I became an actor, a Life Coach, a Human Design Analyst, and the founder of Empowering YOUniquess coaching. All I want is to empower women to free themselves from conditioning, take courageous action and live life authentically. 

Authenticity, courage, honesty and vulnerability became my motto. Those are my four pillars and my direct route towards freedom. 

Today, I define who I am and what is my role in the world, and I have the freedom to choose the woman I want to become every day. My deepest desire is to keep growing and expanding, teaching and contributing. 

I am not afraid of speaking my truth, not afraid of not fitting in, not afraid of being too out-of-the-box for some people. Instead, I am afraid of not living the life I want, of not following my dreams, and not being truthful to myself.   

Today, the only role I have in this world, the only role that matters to me is the role of being unapologetically myself. 

Francesca Alejandra works to empower women to free themselves from conditioning, take courageous action and live life authentically. She is the founder of Empowering YOUniqueness coaching, a Human Design Analyst, and an actress. Follow her on Instagram and Facebook.