ABOUT

Samantha Mackay

Enneagram Practitioner, Healing Coach, Spiritual Advocate. 

The chronic dis-ease hiding in plain sight

This is me in 2012. I look great right? 

But I feel awful. That jacket is covering up the eczema that itches constantly. The smile masks my constant worry about my body, my work, my purpose.

It masks the stomach aches, the constipation, the binge eating disorder, the insomnia. It masks my grief, my fear, my anger. 

What you can’t see, what’s hidden, is my complete inability to express myself. To say what is in my heart, to release my creativity, to share my real ideas. 

I am completely trapped within myself. I try to speak, to be vulnerable, and nothing comes out. 

It look me a long time to connect the dots between my chronic dis-ease and my body’s desperate need to be heard, MY desperate need to be heard. 

And that kind of problem isn’t solved by someone saying, “it’s okay you can come out now.” 

It’s is a mix of building new skills and untangling the mess. 

But what works for me, won’t work for you, and figuring that out became my life’s work.  

I hope what I found helps you heal. 

Samantha Mackay

About me - the quick list

  • I have lived with chronic illness since I was a teen
  • I invested the last 15 years in healing chronic pain, illness and anxiety
  • My first career was litigation lawyer
  • I fell into a deep depression shortly after starting legal work
  • My second career was in corporate leadership and organisational development, culture change, and training
  • I grew up in Australia but spent much of my adulthood living in Canada, England and New Zealand
  • I became an accredited life coach in 2013
  • I started specialising in personality based adult development in 2018, which led me to the Enneagram
  • I love art, theatre and film
  • Painting abstract art was a key part of my healing process 

About me - the long version

Chronic Disease Journey

The first chronic illness I really remember is the constant strep throats at 14.

Now I see a teenage desperate to speak with no one to listen. 

New illness and disorders would appear every time I was in chronically stressful situations. 

When I moved out of home and onto campus. During exam time. When I moved into my first apartment. Navigating intimate relationships. 

All the doctors I saw, the procedures I had, the antibiotics poured into my system, no one asked how I was feeling emotionally. No one asked about my stress. 

Of course, I was so locked within myself, that I could have only said “fine.” Because I had never experienced safety within a relationship or how to open up to someone.

All of this awfulness was bearable because I had all my coping mechanisms to keep me going. But things got harder when constant pain was added into the mix. 

In 2007 I had a hip injury on a hiking trip. I couldn’t walk, sit or lay down without pain. 

Then I moved to London, and once again, without any support system, everything spiralled out of control. 

Within weeks my arms and legs were covered in palm-sized inflamed and weeping patches. My digestion system was a mess, I was numb emotionally with Seasonal Affectiveness Disorder, I barely slept. I was a mess. 

But the straw that broke my back was the day I walked into  to work to discover my near photographic memory and ability to spatially manage vast amounts of information, that is my visual memory, was gone. Replaced by a blank black hole. 

That was the day I stopped denying I had a problem. And started to take care of myself and figure out what it would mean to be pain free. 

 

My Pathway to Coaching

As a teen, I longed to be creative. To become a writer, a dancer, a singer. I craved a career where I could express myself. 

But it was made clear to me that creative careers were Plan B only. And so I became a lawyer. Not because I wanted to (I was rejected from a ton of other jobs), because I had to. 

And while law suited parts of my personality, it didn’t align with my deep desire for creative expression. 

(Which I was really a desire to feel safe sharing my thoughts and ideas.) 

Through a series of serendipitous events I switched into leadership development. Delivering workshops and internal communication campaigns. 

And I became a life coach. This was a keye piece of the puzzle, connecting the dots between emotions and the body.

The more I worked with people, the more I wanted to answer the question: how does conscious, intentional change happen for people?

Answering this led me to personality models, somatic work and energy healing. 

The more I worked with personality models, the more I realised they are a powerful tool for healing, not just growth.

After working with Truity for 3 years, and doing a lot of my own healing work, I finally took the leap to combine my passion for healing chronic disease with my love for the Enneagram, and The Individuo Process began.

Education

  • Enneagram Personal Mastery Programme, CP Enneagram Academy, 2022-2024
  • Trauma-Informed Certificate for Coaches, Centre for Healing, 2023
  • Professional Enneagram Certification, CP Enneagram Academy, 2021-2022
  • Myers-Briggs Profiler Training, Personality Hacker, 2018
  • Awaken the Healer Within, Atua Healing, 2013
  • Results Coaching Certification, Neuroleadership Group, 2012-2013
  • Masters of Laws, University of New South Wales, 2005
  • Bachelor of Laws, University of New South Wales, 2003
  • Bachelor of Commerce, University of New South Wales, 2000
  • Train the Trainer, 1999 & 2011

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