Hi this is Morty Lefkoe with another edition of the weekly podcast, Conversations with Top Personal Development Bloggers. Every week we have a conversation with a blogger who has a slightly different take on personal development. There is so much valuable material being offered by personal development bloggers. This is the best place to find out which ones might provide you with just what you’re looking for, what’s unique about each blogger, why they started writing their blog, how their personal experiences then form their blog, why you ought to be reading their blog, and lots more.

Today I have the pleasure to talk to Elle Sommer who has a wonderful blog called Reflecting a Life. So we’re going to find out from her all about her and her blog.

Elle Sommer

Elle Sommer

Morty: So how are you today, Elle?

Elle: I’m wonderful, Morty. And I just want to say thank you so much. I’m honored to be here and having this opportunity to speak with you.

Morty: My pleasure. So let’s start at the beginning. What was the impetus to write your blog to begin with? What gave you the idea this is something I should be doing?

Elle: Well basically, I bought the pants off everybody talking to them.

Morty: Okay.

Elle: I had been studying and practicing what I have called principles of life for a long, long time. And I was so excited by the differences that it made in my life that I had to shout it from the rooftops for everybody. And I’d go to parties and people would avoid me because they’d know I’d be going to talk to them about it. It was always about how wonderful life is and how you can do these things and it will change your life. Basically I was a pain in the proverbial.

So I thought to myself, well maybe I could write about it. Maybe that would be the way to go. And I knew nothing about setting up a blog, so I just sought people’s help and everybody they were incredibly helpful. And so that was basically the reason behind it was I wanted to share the experiences that I have had that have made my life so amazingly beautifully wonderful. And I knew that they could have the same experiences, too. There’s nothing unique about me.

Morty: Very good, thank you. So how long has this been? When did you first started writing the blog?

Elle: Not quite three years ago.

Morty: Okay. Well you’ve gone pretty fast then. You’re one of the top 30 or something personal development bloggers. In three years, that’s pretty good.

Elle: Well I’m happy. It’s a motivation for me. It’s really a labor of love. If I can help one person see their life in a different way and so that they can make whatever changes they deem necessary, and they can live a superb life, I’m a happy camper.

Morty: Wonderful. Well that sounds good. Let’s get going here then. Let’s get some more information. What’s your background in personal development? You said you had taken some course or some program that you were excited about. What was that?

Elle: I did. Let me go back to the beginning. It actually all started when my husband, my then husband, was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. I’d lived in England and that wasn’t really a great field for any help other than the conventional, normal medical help that one would get. So I decided to look for other fields. Didn’t have a computer but somehow I stumbled across Shakti Gawain, and her book Creative Visualization.

Morty: Got it.

Elle: And that was the beginning of a new awakening for me. I didn’t know anything about it. And I decided that I was going to practice this in order to support my husband in his healing. And so I did. I did it religiously.

Sadly it did not support him in his healing. But it certainly supported me in dealing with the experience that we were having together. And it just set me on a new path, a new course in my life. And I actually had the opportunity, I met Shakti and I had the opportunity to say thank you to her because through her, I had the most wonderful spiritual experiences during my husband’s illness and his passing.

Morty: Oh that’s great. Thank you for sharing that. Could you either describe those or any other personal experiences that you’ve had that had been useful in writing your blog either at the beginning or anything since then? What is it that you draw upon? What are these personal experiences that you draw upon in writing your blog?

Elle: Yes. As I mentioned earlier, I read and studied them. I did a year’s coaching with Bob Proctor. That was fascinating. Prior to that, I did Silva, Jose Silva seminars. I studied the Sedona method, went to Abraham seminars. This is all in my early days.

Morty: Okay.

Elle: And naturally one of the things, it’s all very well to gather all this information but if you don’t practice it, it’s not very valuable. So I began to practice, and a few years after the death of my husband, I had decided that I wasn’t ever going to have another relationship again because we had been very happy and I was just fine. I’ve had a great love and that was a blessing.

But a few years after his passing, I woke up one day and I said why not? Why couldn’t I have even more love in my life? And so I created my very first vision board. Never have I done anything like that before. But it was all part and parcel of experimenting with what I’d been studying and learning. And so I created this vision board.

Morty: I can hear the thunder in the back of you.

Elle: Yes.

Morty: You said there was a rainstorm. I hear the thunder from time to time. Okay. But it’s not interrupting you. You’re doing fine.

Elle: I just want to add a little atmosphere.

Morty: We got it.

Elle: So yes, I set up this vision board. And probably a year later, I married a man for whom I will say that he is one of the reasons I’m the happiest woman in the world today. And that was 15 years ago.

Morty: Congratulations, that’s wonderful.

Elle: Thank you. That was one of the things. Another thing that I did, we went on a holiday to Kauai and fell in love with it. It was so beautiful and I said to my husband in passing, “It would be really nice to own a condo here.” We had absolutely no intention. It was more a pipe dream than anything. But what I did was, every night I fell asleep as if I was in a condo on Kauai. And I think maybe two months later, we purchased a condo. It came about through all kinds of unexpected means which of course these things always do. So that’s just a couple of things, experiences that I’ve had using the principles that I’ve studied.

Morty: Very good, well that sounds good then. Who is your typical audience? Have you ever checked the demographics of your readers?

Elle: I’m not awfully linear. The wonderful lady who takes care of the back-end of my blog, she tells me that it’s a mixture of male and females, that all ages from students to older people. And that’s about all I know, Morty.

Morty: That’s fine. What would you say is the essence of your message? What are you tellling other people week after week?

Elle: I think the essence of my message is love. I would say love. I would say love of yourself, love of one another, love of life. We’re either living in fear or in love, we are either thinking fearful thoughts or loving thoughts. And we might just as well make them loving. Because our experiences as a result of that are much more wonderful. So I would say that distills it.

Morty: Sounds like a good message to me. How often do you post nowadays?

Elle: Usually twice a week. When I first started, I posted everyday because I read all these things, you need to post every day. But I found that it wasn’t very substantial. You don’t have the time to invest in really truly thinking about what it is you want to say and how you want to express it in a way that will be readily available to your readers. So I cut it back. So now I’m at two.

Morty: Okay good. To the extent you’re aware of any other bloggers, and you say you did look at some of the interviews. You didn’t actually see their blogs but you became familiar, what would you say is unique about your blog? There’s literally hundreds and hundreds of personal development bloggers. Obviously everybody’s voice makes them unique but would you define in any way what you think is unique about your blog versus anybody else’s in the same field?

Elle: I absolutely agree with what you say that everybody has their own voice, that authenticity that they bring to the table. Maybe for somebody like myself, my experiences show in my writing I’ve experienced the views on widowhood. I’ve volunteered at hospice and worked in cancer wards as a result of having lost somebody to cancer. And I think that that adds something to what I have to say because I’ve been there. There aren’t too many things that I haven’t experienced. And I bounce back and I’m still standing. And everybody else can do the same.

Morty: Got it. So you’re bringing all of you to your blog, and that’s what’s unique.

Elle: Yes.

Morty: Okay good. You mentioned Shakti Gawain and some of the other courses, but would you say there’s anybody, any one or two people who’ve specifically influenced your thinking or been sort of role models for you?

Elle: Yes. Definitely, Bob Proctor. Attending his seminars and meeting him in person, and having attended his coaching online and by telephone for a year had a huge impact on my life. And I suspect that a lot of that is because you are so immersed in it. You are so involved for a long period of time with something that is uplifting and beneficial and expanding. And I think that to have that, as I say for a long period of time, is going to make a huge difference in anybody’s life. And as a result of Bob Proctor, I discovered a man called Neville Goddard.

Morty: You were saying something about Neville Gardner.

Elle: Goddard.

Morty: Goddard.

Elle: Yes. He was a mystic who wrote books such as Power of Awareness, Feeling is the Secret, and I learned about him from Bob Proctor because he was somebody that he had studied. And studying Neville Goddard truly opened my eyes to the depth of spirituality that exists in us all which is part and parcel of our life experience.

Morty: Very good. Thank you. That answers that part. Do you have a long-term goal for your blog?

Elle: My goal has always been to support people in creating a life that is wonderful. And that hasn’t changed. It continues. I think that perhaps a good thing for me to do now would be to add some programs such as yours through affiliates because I don’t have anything like that.

I just have what I write. And I think it would be beneficial if people could take a look at some of the things that I have studied that have made a difference in my life. And perhaps for them would make a big difference, too.

Morty: Do you accept comments on your blog?

Elle: I do.

Morty: And do you respond to them?

Elle: I do. I think it’s an important exchange. I want people to share their experiences. I want us all to encourage each other in our growth and in our expansion and in our love of life.

Morty: Good. Here’s a more general question but it’s what’s your mission in life sort of what is it that you’re vision is or what do you want to do with your life? And how does writing your blog specifically fit in or contribute to that broad mission you have?

Elle: I think my personal mission is to live as consciously as I possibly can. And to encourage and inspire other people to lead the most amazing life that is possible for them. And I think that that is entirely in keeping with what I write about.

Morty: Okay. Is there anything else? I think we got a pretty good sense of who you are, and your background, and your experience in personal development and what’s unique about you and your blog. Is there anything else you’ve left out that you’d like our audience to know about you or your blog itself?

Elle: I think the only thing that I would add is that it doesn’t really matter whether it’s my voice or somebody else’s voice that you hear, that you actually can hear, that allows you to see how amazingly brilliant and wonderful you are. Go with that one. That’s what I would say.

Morty: Okay. What is the URL for your blog so that people can visit?

Elle: It’s called Reflectingalife.com.

Morty: Just those three words together without a space?

Elle: Yes.

Morty: Reflectingalife.com

Elle: Yes.

Morty: Well thank you so much for spending the time with us today. I think that my readers and the readers of many other personal development blogs should find out about you and check out your voice and see how all of your life’s experiences have contributed to the advice and the suggestions you make in your blog on a twice a week basis. Thank you for taking the time to get interviewed today. And I look forward to talking to you again at some point in the future.

Elle: Thank you, Morty. The same applies to you. I really enjoyed myself.

Morty: Bye.

Elle: Bye.