Love Is The Answer: Interview with Joana Soares
Time to Rise – Ask the Author Series
Joana Soares is a veterinarian from Porto, Portugal. Since her early teens she has struggled with her appearance, battling with the belief that she wasn’t ‘enough’. This feeling grew into a battle with an eating disorder.
Over the course of her journey, she has discovered the power of love as a cure for all. This was how she began to heal.
Joana’s story in Time to Rise is all about her steadfast belief that love is the answer – whatever the question!
Dr. Andrea – From such a young age you have been so clear about the direction your life would take, even though at times it was tough, and I find that so inspiring. You’ve told me before that your core philosophy is that love is the answer. So tell us how your background and your story to this point has led you to this belief that you can trust love above all else.
Joana – During my childhood I was always a loving person; I liked to talk, I had a lot of friends, and I always hugged people. Then there came a point where I started to believe that I wasn’t pretty. At around 14 to 15 years old this turned into an eating disorder. Before recovering from that, I understood that love is inside of us all. If we come at our struggles from a place of love, things can get better. So I really believed that love was the cure.
One day I hope the world will get better; we need to love more, ourselves and others.
Dr. Andrea – It’s been amazing to see how your life has shifted so much. From your younger years and dealing with an eating disorder, then finding your way to tap back into self-love. And a big part of your story is how you make certain choices. So tell us about how you decided to become a veterinarian.
Joana – Actually, it wasn’t my first choice. At first I applied to study to be a dentist. When I didn’t get accepted to the course, my next choice was to work with animals. My first big dream as a child was to have a dog – and my dog, Lucky, became my best friend. So when I was applying for universities, I looked at Lucky and thought that being a veterinarian could be a good choice for me.
This gave me the opportunity to pursue my interest in science, and to help animals too! In my first year of veterinarian school I really felt I had discovered my passion. It was a blessing.
Dr. Andrea – So what inspired you to share your story in Time to Rise?
Joana – Because I want to help other people. When I came across you I really understood your message about the love in the world and how it can help people. I know that sometimes people don’t want to talk about issues like eating disorders. But it is so important that we do, and I think are lot of people are struggling with similar problems.
In the beginning, nobody knew my story. But when I started to share my story, some friends of mine knew parts of my history, but not all of it. So when they read the whole story in Time to Rise they were amazed and said it will help a lot of people.
I also discovered that some of my friends had similar stories. One just told me that her sister was struggling, and she passed the book on to help her.
Dr. Andrea – That’s beautiful. And how has this process impact you on a personal level?
Joana – I know now that we have all that we need inside of ourselves. Whether it’s an eating disorder, or something else, we can move on from it by working on changing how we feel about ourselves.
Dr. Andrea – In your story in Time to Rise you talk about the voice within being something that helped you with working on how you felt. Can you explain a little about what that voice is for you?
Joana – For me the voice within is awareness of my feelings and my intuition. To listen to that voice is to trust myself. I also relate it to the law of attraction, so it really is a powerful tool when I pay attention.
Dr. Andrea – Obviously, you’re continuing your work as a veterinarian. But what else do you think the future holds for you now that you’re a published author?
Joana – I really like to write, and I have some more stories inside of me. One of my big dreams is to do a TED Talk. I don’t really know what the theme will be yet; but something related to the bond between people and animals.
I need to practice my speaking though! In the meantime I’m going to keep helping animals.
Dr. Andrea – If there was somebody reading this now, who is at a point where they don’t feel pretty or enough – what would you say to them?
Joana – I would say to be tough, keep going, because everything will pass. It’s funny, today I am in my hometown, and I’m sitting in my house where I went through all of my problems. I was looking at the stairs earlier, a spot where I used to sit while I was binge eating.
Today as I passed the stairs, I was thinking to myself that if I could talk with the old Joana, I would say, “ Keep going girl, you will do it. Don’t worry too much, it’s going to be okay.”
Joana hopes her story will inspire and help people and make them believe that anything is possible. She believes that love is the answer to all and she has a strong will to help people and animals all over the world.
To find out more and talk with Joana please write to: [email protected]
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