Turning Personal Loss Into Purpose

Karla J. Noland is a wife, working mom, award-winning author & speaker, and a trauma informed certified Self-Discovery & Positive Intelligence coach who loves sharing what she has learned. She lives with her family in Durham, NC, USA.

As the founder and CEO of Reveal Heal Thrive LLC, Karla’s mission is to help trauma survivors discover their true self after surviving life’s storms.

Karla established Reveal Heal Thrive LLC in October 2020 after the untimely passing of her mother. She spent much of her life holding on to pain, trauma, and anger, and as part of her healing process, Karla recognized she was merely surviving in life but was not thriving. She wanted to live a more purposeful life and let go of any attachments that no longer served her. Over time, Karla turned her adversity into opportunity, and thus Reveal Heal Thrive LLC was born.

Her latest book and bereavement companion journal, titled The Day My Heart Turned Blue, is the 2022 Eric Hoffer Spiritual book award winner, which chronicles Karla’s healing journey after the death of her mother.

Why do you think it’s so difficult for us to move on from traumatic experiences in life?

Research at Queen’s University found our brains generate over 6,000 thoughts. 80% of those thoughts are negative compared to 20% of positive thoughts. Our brains are built for survival to keep us safe. This can come in handy when there is imminent danger, but it becomes a problem when we ruminate on negative thoughts for too long. Then we find ourselves stuck in fear and anxiety. As a result we are reacting instead of responding to life’s challenges.Because what we focus on grows. When we focus on negative thoughts, it’s the only perspective we see.

You lost your mother to CNS melanoma in November 2019, how has the untimely loss of your mother changed you as a mother and as a person?

After my mother’s death, my family and I were packing up her belongings and sorting her things into 3 piles: Keep, Trash, and Donate. 

I thought to myself: after everything I have gone through, is what I wanted my life to boil down to? 

The unresolved trauma in my life was negatively affecting my mental health. I was projecting my anxiety onto my children; continuing the cycle of generational trauma. 

I knew I wanted to live a more fulfilled life, but I didn’t know what that looked like for me. I never took time to dream and visualize the life I wanted; I have only been surviving up to this point. 

The pandemic gave me a moment to pause, and that’s when I sought therapy to get to the root of my pain so that I could reveal the negative core beliefs I had about myself. With this awareness brought about the creation of a new belief system which was rooted in self-compassion, empathy, and love. 

From my mother’s death, I turned my pain into purpose and broke the generational cycle of trauma in my family.

How has authoring and sharing your personal experiences helped you in your healing process?

I healed as I redefined my identity and reframed the negative thoughts I held about myself. Sharing my story empowers others to do the same, making this world smaller. As we all share common threads in our story of heartache, grief, and new beginnings. While I am encouraging others, I am also encouraging myself and boosting my confidence with a new perspective and mindset on life.

What are 3 fun facts about you that you’d like to share?

1) I’m a foodie. I love good food, especially Caribbean food. I miss my mother’s cooking so much!

2) I love learning about others’ stories, especially through biopics. One of my favorite biopics is Celia, which is written about the life of the famous Afro-Cuban Salsa singer Celia Cruz.

3) I have a random set playlist I listen to every day. I start off with Gospel, then 90s R&B to 80s Pop, and everything Beyonce.

If you met a stranger who has come up to you for a single piece of advice to take away with them, what would that be?

You cannot heal what you are not willing to reveal. The first step in any transformation is self-awareness. Take time to address the things in your life that are holding you back from living your best authentic self.

Follow Karla and Reveal Heal Thrive.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: