Carissa Walford is an award winning Channel [V] TV Host who became obsessed with human behaviour; digging deeper through the art of interview and into the raw stories and vulnerabilities of her subjects. The objective always to provoke ones authentic self to shine. Her passion had made itself clear, and so Carissa moved on from music and into her current role(s) of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) practitioner, yoga facilitator and mentor.Here, we talk the dying popularity of being 'busy,' the art of being present and breaking free from the ruling of our subconscious mind.

M+E: You have evolved from TV Host to working as an NLP practitioner, mentor, yoga facilitator – dedicating yourself to helping others reach the ‘depth of their truest self and live in full alignment.’ Was there a defining moment in your previous career that awakened you to the understanding that change was needed – that a new path was required?

CW: As an interviewer my job was to bring out the best version of people … musicians, actors and celebrities etc. I was always so fascinated by their raw stories that were honest and vulnerable and found myself digging deeper so their authentic self could shine through. I’m obsessed with human behaviour, conditioning, childhood upbringing and generally what experiences people have gone through that make them the person they are today. I see my career now as a new chapter, but I have always had the same pursuit of connection and bringing peoples’ true self forward.

M+E: We imagine such a career shift would have manifested feelings of fear as you walked towards the unknown, how did you manage these feelings and persevere?

CW: My identity in the media was very external so I did a lot of my own work – reflecting on how that came to be. As an NLP coach I can recognise the limiting beliefs and blockages my clients have that stop them living in their full potential. I was able to spend some time really going inward to re-wire my own conditioning and slowly transitioned into my role as a coach.

Just having the awareness within yourself is the first step of doing ‘the work’ and pushing through any resistance holding you back. It’s still an ongoing process for me and I keep peeling back the layers. My work today is to serve. It’s not about me anymore and that’s become the most rewarding part of my job.

“As cliche as it sounds - when you start to grasp that the present moment is all we ever have, we actually start experiencing feelings of joy, happiness and peace. When you’re reliving the past or constantly thinking in the future, you’re not really living.”

M+E: We hear a lot about the importance of being present with particular reference to the modern individual’s lack thereof (courtesy of technology and busyness). What are some easy-to-integrate, daily rituals/practices we can all consider when striving to be more present?

CW: Stillness. Society will praise busyness however we as a collective are starting to wake up and see through this belief.

As a Vedic mediator – that’s my non-negotiable practice twice a day. If you’re new at meditating I suggest sitting for 10 min in silence to start getting used to being silent and still, and connecting to yourself each day. You can build this over time, and as your nervous system upgrades, you’ll find being busy is no longer fulfilling as it’s always moving further outward.

Walking barefoot for a sense of greater grounding and being surrounded by nature instantly gets me back in my body and out of my head as well.

M+E: What short and long term benefits will we experience from the act of being more present, and what are some short and long term goals we can set ourselves on this journey?

CW: As cliche as it sounds – when you start to grasp that the present moment is all we ever have, we actually start experiencing feelings of joy, happiness and peace. When you’re reliving the past or constantly thinking in the future, you’re not really living. It’s a constant practice of putting your attention back to your breath, and asking yourself if you’re feeling overwhelmed … ‘is there anything wrong in this moment’ the answer is always ‘no.’

M+E: How does NLP apply here?

CW: Your subconscious mind is running your life. Once you become aware of these stories, you start to break free from the habits that aren’t serving you – ie: finding the confidence to start a new career. NLP can get to the bottom of a specific situation or even comment someone said to you at a young age (that’s then formed a belief that you’re not ‘good enough’ for example).

M+E: A wise person once told you …?

CW: A wise man once told me when you make a decision in life the universe will back you and push you forward into the direction you chose. Sitting in fear keeps you stagnant. There is no such thing as failure – just feedback!

M+E: Album/artist on repeat?

CW: Billie Ellish! And Lorde!

M+E: If you could walk in the shoes of anyone for a day (from past or present time), who would it be?

CW: Honestly, no one … I like my shoes!

M+E: If you could travel anywhere in the world tomorrow, where would it be?

CW: Funnily enough I’m currently living in Byron Bay and have realised during COVID that Australia is the most magical country. I would explore more of this beautiful land I grew up in – camping in Uluru would be incredible.

M+E: Last random act of kindness?

CW: Planting trees to increase local koala habitat.


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