About Me

Lou’s Journey

Hi, I’m Lou and I’m a Therapist, Trauma Specialist and Speaker.

I have spent nearly twenty years of my life as a therapist and am known for the work I’ve done around addictions, eating disorders and trauma.  I’m currently in the process of writing an online programme for those of us who have been through trauma.  Mostly because I don’t believe there are many affordable options out there and trauma is an area that’s all too apparent and many people are struggling with no access to the help that they need.  Also because after much training and development, I feel I have some valuable insights both personal and professional to share that I hope may be helpful on a wider scale.

I specialised for over a decade in addictions working on the addiction treatment programme at the Priory Hospital in London, SW15,  On the addiction unit, of course I dealt with all sorts of dual diagnosis issues, PTSD, anxiety disorders, psychosis and eating disorders.  Then a further 8 years in Central London seeing all sorts of presenting issues but I’ve mainly been using EMDR (eye movement desensitisation reprocessing) and working with trauma for the past five years.

My passion has always been to give some of the tools I’ve learnt during my two decades as a clinician and self explorer to other people to help them on their path. My own journey of recovery from mental health issues, addiction and childhood trauma was interesting, eventful even and has given me a fair bit of knowledge to impart.

Having been there myself, my joy is in helping others to release their “old stuff” and dissolve the blocks, often taken on during their childhood or teenage years that are holding them back.

More about me

At various points in our lives, I’ve learnt that most of us need help in overcoming our limitations, setbacks and challenges. I’ve been lucky to assist many people break through their own internal saboteurs and unhelpful behaviours, including myself.  I know I can give you a powerful map to support you in letting go of things that are holding you back.

Whether that’s needing to increase your self belief, upscale your self worth, find your voice and passion or let go of your self-sabotaging behaviours. To become the person you were always destined to be, a free, authentic and real self – which is totally possible for us all. Trust me. I’m well on the path and I’ve witnessed many others leaving behind their fears too. So why not you?

Lou Lebentz, big hearted visionary and long-term expert in the addiction field, is a totally inspiring and thought provoking speaker. Down to earth, funny and engaging, you can hear a pin drop when she delivers what are highly entertaining speeches on subjects that none of us can afford not to pay attention to.

Susannah Southgate, MSc, CPCC Transformational Coach, Educator & Speaker

You have the ability to change

I am absolutely convinced that you can discover a different self and your true path in life at any age –it happened to me in my forties! We often have to take a few frightening steps forwards, towards our dreams and not listen to that critical, fearful voice inside. Paradoxically, this often happens by going towards what terrifies you the most, falling head first into your fears, somehow you truly become your best self in the process.

I had many failures on the path towards finding my real self. A couple of business ventures that didn’t work out alongside a lifelong terror of public speaking and learning how to walk my talk. I had to come out from behind the therapy screen to stand shaking with fear on a stage whilst attempting to become a speaker & hopefully at some point an online trainer into the process.

I faced my demons mainly because I have a good enough reason! I want to share my own challenges with mental health, addiction, childhood trauma and my recent health challenges with you.  This motivation to share comes from a genuine desire to help you see that we can overcome anything in pursuit of our true self which is often found in discovering our voice and our truest life calling and listening to our dreams.

Also I would love to save you time and money; it took me a very long while to find the answers and and so much soul searching to work through my trauma and come out the other side.  I travelled from Italy to India from Spiritual Guru’s to Shamanic Healers, from all forms of therapy and almost all modalities to Energy Work and finally EMDR and tapping in order to shed the shame, let go of the stories and to finally re-discover myself, my voice and my ability to be seen.   I hope you can via one of my eventual courses do it in a fraction of the time at a fraction of the cost it took me : )

My Previous Paths

Job explorations took me from the rag trade initially, to the radio industry, finally into rehab and my desire to share my learning experiences with you.

Initially, I wanted to be an actress and I attended drama school but I ended up working for Sir Phillip Green, amongst others in the rag trade because of a family situation and an urgency for me to “get out and get a real job” not mess about on the stage!

I then spent some time in the jeans’ industry,  but it marked a huge turning point in my life when unbeknown to me my drink was spiked with LSD at a fashion show whilst working for a company back then called “Joe Bloggs Jeans”.

The result was a psychotic episode that culminated in an admission to a psychiatric hospital that eventually prompted a total re-evaluation of my life.  During this journey of self-discovery, initially through self-help books and personal development programmes, I became fascinated by the mind and what had happened to mine whilst I was so ill, having been psychiatrically diagnosed and sectioned.

After this epiphany, I decided to change career yet again and get back into something more creative. I was propelled back into the spotlight at Capital Radio working with people like Chris Tarrant, Kenny Everett and Tony Blackburn in the Marketing and Events Dept.

Another family situation necessitated a career break and after helping launch the radio station Heart 106.2 in London, I joined my mother up a mountain in Umbria in Italy, helping nurse my alcoholic stepfather and get him back to the UK and into rehab. When I returned to the UK 3 years later, unsurprisingly, I began a new path yet again, re-training as an addictions therapist and landing a job at The Priory Hospital in London.  From Rags, to Radio to eventually Rehab!!

To India and Wisdom Traditions

Over the next decade, as well as my specialist addiction training, I added to my skill set, by receiving an Advanced Diploma in Contemporary Psychotherapy and then adding to my portfolio with eating disorders training then trauma training and more specifically EMDR and EFT courses in the second decade of my therapy career.

I also attended lots of silent meditation retreats, including a 10 day Vippassana meditation retreat here in the UK. As well as my clinical work and trainings I became interested in spirituality, making a long sabbatical to India on an ayurvedic journey visiting ashrams and meeting Amma the hugging saint.  I spent time with the spiritual teacher Mooji and attending his events in Portugal.  Whilst training in Reiki and mindfulness as well as reading and studying many other eastern philosophies, wisdom traditions and spiritual disciplines too. I guess I became a learning junkie : ) but it served me well and my central nervous system calmed.  Some of the knowledge I’ve gained over the years is what I’m about to impart to you hopefully in the very near future.

Lou Lebentz, big hearted visionary and long-term expert in the addiction field, is a totally inspiring and thought provoking speaker. Down to earth, funny and engaging, you can hear a pin drop when she delivers what are highly entertaining speeches on subjects that none of us can afford not to pay attention to.

Susannah Southgate, MSc, CPCC Transformational Coach, Educator & Speaker

To Health Challenges and Coming Home

I sadly experienced a fair few traumas in my youth which I believe added to my psychotic episode and addiction history.  These sexual traumas compounded a sense of shame and unworthiness I felt about myself throughout my adult life. Other than those, another fairly traumatic incident was I also received a cancer diagnosis in 2017.  I  found out I had a 15 cm tumour on my right ovary which was in fact malignant and Stage 1 ovarian cancer.

At 49 it made me realise an important fact.  That I might not have as much time on this planet as I thought.  There’s nothing like a scare and a stare at our own potential death or a life threatening disease to encourage you to push on.  I believe we all have a dharma or calling but most of us cannot seem to push through the resistance that is quite often holding us back.  For me, cancer was yet another wake up call and one I needed perhaps to make me realise a few different things.  Firstly, my cancer led me to an age old memory that I’d still not fully processed.  Incidents in my youth which still had emotions on which were stored in my body that I was unaware of.  But secondly, it helped me to cement my ideas about finding my voice.   I’d spent a decade being so resistant to that,  too scared to shine and have a voice.

So for me, sharing my stories and thoughts is really grounded in the hope that it might inspire someone who watches or hears anything that I put out;  My mission is definitely about helping others live more fully and go for it with the time we have left and overcome our blocks.  With cancer obviously, one is unsure how long the remission will be. But please god now I’ve found my voice, I’m hoping it’ll be at least another 35 years yet! I hope to help a great many more people through their path of releasing trauma yet and stepping into their light.

I hope to meet you in the future and I really pray that you find some of my teachings helpful.

Thank you for reading this!

Many blessings and the very best of luck on your journey

Much love xx

Lou x 

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