Paula Sanderson

“And, when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.” -Paulo Coelho

Paula was born on Prince Edward Island (PEI) in Canada. Although she primarily grew up in Massachusetts, summers were reserved for the natural simplicity of her grandparents’ farm back in PEI. From a young age, Paula knew the importance of a present, farm-to-table lifestyle. However, as she grew older, her family travelled less to PEI and the toxicity of city living affected her decision-making and weighed down on her in pounds. Paula was a single mom, struggling to support her family, and forgot the lessons from the farm. Eventually, she found Overeater’s Anonymous, which changed her life. She learned to put herself first and eat better. This experience promoted her to sponsor, and she began helping others struggling with weight and food dependency. In 2013, Paula received her Associate’s Degree in Liberal Arts from Northshore Community College, while also starting on a B.A. in Psychology from UMass Lowell. With an interest and passion for whole-body health, Paula later enrolled in the Budrose Center for Spiritual Growth, where she studied energy anatomy in depth and received her Reiki Master.

Paula loves meeting new people, spending time in nature, and being with her family. She relishes in slowing down and enjoying the moments in front of her. With a passion for learning, Paula continues to read and study on a daily basis. She is always up for trying new, healthy recipes and different styles of meditation that inspire her to continue on her spiritual and healing path.

To learn more about how Paula became interested in whole-body health, read her story…

Her Story

Paula’s struggle with weight began at 6-years-old, when her family moved to Massachusetts from PEI. Being the fat kid in class, Paula was bullied incessantly. This led to poor self-esteem throughout her adolescence and into adulthood. After high school, Paula did one semester at Middlesex Community College, but stress got the better of her and she withdrew to Vermont, which reminded her of her roots in PEI. Life slowed down and Paula was grounded. She lost weight, was working as a manager at the Wagon Wheel Truck Plaza, and felt present again.

A year after giving birth to her first child, Paula needed to be with her family and returned to Massachusetts. Being a new mom and missing the rural lifestyle again, Paula continued to struggle. Baby weight turned to more weight, and eventually it became hard to lose at all. While working as a night-shift manager at Bickford’s in Woburn, Paula’s natural ability to lead and encourage others blossomed, but she had trouble turning these abilities inward. On a mission to lose weight, she tried fad diets, Weight Watchers, even therapy, but nothing seemed to work. This went on for 10 years.

Overweight, anxious, and depressed, Paula searched for something more meaningful and discovered Overeater’s Anonymous (OA). Through the 12-step program, she began to explore the person behind the pounds. There was a community to rely on and a sponsor to hold her accountable. Paula was eating better and thinking more positively, which led to her losing 120 pounds in a year and pursuing a college education. For 3 years, Paula used the program, but an emptiness inside told her something was still missing.

This emptiness led back to old habits and patterns, and Paula abandoned OA, feeling disappointed and embarrassed. Over the next 3 years, she proceeded to gain back 80 pounds, getting wrapped up in the stressors of life and depleting her self-worth. Paula realized that even though the structure of OA held her accountable, it didn’t help her exhume the deeper issues beneath the weight.

With a previous interest in Reiki, Paula decided it was a healing technique worth further investigation, and signed up to pursue a professional certification. Over the course of her studies, she delved through years of old traumas and wounds, healing herself at an energetic level, and discovered that what was missing all along was her personal power. It was there, but it was weak. By working on her energy and learning to lead a more mindful life—just like on PEI—Paula overcame her addiction to food. She learned she didn’t need to live in the country to slow down and eat better. It had been in her all along.

Today, Paula is proud to share her experience in self-growth and reclaiming her power. Her passion and talent for guiding and helping others is only enhanced by the work she has done on herself.