In 2010, I was in a very dark place. I found myself spiralling into a deep hole of depression and anxiety. I remember the moment my husband came back from work and found me crying into the carpet, hoping the floor would just swallow me up. That was when the doctor put me on anti-depressants, and I was offered Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT). I tried both, but neither helped. Then I heard about Hoffman at a lunch with my aunt, but as a jobbing actor and recently married, money was tight. However, I was fortunate to have financial help from a family member and 4 months later I booked onto the course. I will be eternally grateful for that.
I now realise that I was riding an emotional rollercoaster that reflected my childhood – one full of extreme ups and downs. I was very lucky to grow up in a large house in the country with my brothers and sister, a Great Aunt who was like a second mum to me, and lots of animals. My father owned a very successful film distribution company and my mum was a supermodel, who was the first Cadbury’s Flake girl, amongst other claims to fame. Our connections with the entertainment industry meant we were used to the high life. My mum did stop working when she had us kids, but my father would continue to fly back and forth from LA. Holidays were always spent in our grand second homes in Hollywood on Sunset Boulevard with swimming pools, tennis courts, a running track through the hills and more. A gilded lifestyle of limousines and transatlantic travel.
Sadly, when I was about 8 years old, finances became uncertain and my parents’ marriage began to break down. My father met someone else, but he and mum decided to stay together ‘for the sake of the kids’. The years that followed were punctuated by fights, arguments and worries. When I was eleven, I got very ill and had developed Type1 diabetes, which was very hard to deal with, especially back then. For a long time, we lived a double life – in a luxurious house with no money to feed the electricity meter – and by the time I hit my teens, bailiffs were regular visitors.
We finally lost the house when I was 17. The accumulated stress sent me off the rails and I became the proverbial ‘wild child’. I flunked my A-levels but got a scholarship to drama school in Oxford where I was able to start a new life away from past traumas – or so I thought.
However, fast forward to 2010 when I realised the past has a way of catching up with you – hence I found myself on the Process.
The book about the Process is called You Can Change Your Life and it certainly changed mine. I stopped fighting with myself and with life, trying to achieve and prove myself to the world. The only person I needed to prove myself to and believe in was ME.
I left the course feeling I’d been given a second chance. Hoffman didn’t wave a magic wand and make every issue and all of my personality patterns disappear straight away, but it gave me the awareness of myself, my feelings and actions, so I could change my choices and responses. It was a lifeline to recovery. After the Process, I clearly remember driving into town on a sunny day and noticing familiar emotional triggers surfacing, then realising that was OK because I was fully in control – I was literally in the driver’s seat.
My husband was so impressed at the change in me that he did the Process about 8 months later and now we’re on the same page, strengthening and deepening our relationship. We understand each other and see how others are acting or reacting in our lives from a similar perspective. We know how important it is to give each other time and space and how to offer each other support like a best friend, helping one another to deal with patterns that come up.
Our lives changed even more radically after his return, as I fell pregnant a few months later. We did a very valuable Hoffman parenting workshop and I’ve done a short refresher course since then too – to keep things under review.
In my line of work, auditioning to get a break can be soul-destroying, but after the course, I had so much more confidence from knowing who I was that I flourished. As well as acting roles, I got more voiceover jobs and was able to build a small studio. I then went on to have two beautiful children. I now have a successful company and a larger purpose-built studio working full time providing voiceover services for gaming, commercial, corporate and other sectors. If you live in the UK, you may have heard me when doing your shopping or watching TV, without even knowing it.
I believe the Process saved my life. It was the best thing I’ve ever done and spent money on. Strong words, but true and certainly from the heart. It was also one of the hardest things I’ve ever done, but the most rewarding. I looked deep in the mirror, faced my patterns and got to know myself properly, fully learning to love myself for who I am. As an actor, it’s easy to forget who you are and be truly yourself. I got a new life and I found ME!
For more about Posy’s award-winning work and to enjoy her blog, visit: https://thevoiceovervoice.co.uk