We had the good fortune of connecting with Amanda Gonzales and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Amanda, how do you think about risk?
When I think about risk taking my reaction is always curiosity. When it comes to risk I’ve always felt curious about what would happen if I just took the risk and what if it all works out. I’ve also wondered what I might miss out on if I don’t take the risk as well. Reflecting on this has made me realize that I’ve always been a risk taker throughout my life. I started my first business as a self employed hairstylist at 22 years old. At the time, it appeared to be a huge risk for me to leave a salon after only a year of working there and venture out on my own. No one I knew was doing it and the individual suite options that are wildly popular now like phenix salon suites, sola salons, or salon republic didn’t exist at that time. There was booth rental but I wanted something that was my own that I could decorate and run as my own space without having to abide by someone else’s rules or structures. That’s what made the risk worth taking. The possibility of an end result that was something I could form into whatever I desired. I think the willingness to take risks has been a large part of my success throughout my life. What some might see as a risk, to me, is just the direction my intuition is guiding me towards and the nudge I feel I must honor to be true to myself and create the life I desire. I think the risk is almost always worth taking when it’s coming from an inner knowing to take the leap. Risk is almost always associated with some perceived danger as a result of the risk taking but that doesn’t mean that the danger is really there. When speaking in terms of business I think the perceived danger in risk taking is the possibility of failure. Each time I’ve taken a risk in my life or career I’ve always felt there was no chance I could fail, but if I did, I knew I would be okay anyways. I guess I’m resilient that way.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?

The path that lead me to where I am today hasn’t necessarily been easy. I chose to let go of a successful and reliable career I spent 16 years building to pursue a more fulfilling healing purpose during a pandemic and during a time in my life when I was grieving the end of my life as I knew it. In July of 2020 I filed for divorce after coming to the realization that I had been in a toxic, trauma bonded relationship with a man that had been lying, cheating, manipulating and using me for over 10 years. At the same time I had just started to pursue my path as a sound healer. I was balancing the grieving process along with discovering who I truly was outside of the unhealthy and emotionally abusive relationship I had been in and the life I no longer recognized as my own.

I overcame the challenges I faced early on by working with a holistic therapist and giving myself the time and space to honor my feelings and emotions as they came up. I focused on my own healing and understanding of why I chose to stay in such an unhealthy situation for so long. This was a painful and sometimes unbearable process. There were so many times I wanted to give up in the beginning because of the emotional pain I was dealing with but then I would give a sound bath and drop into that space of who I really am and what I have to offer and I truly believe it’s what kept me going and helped me to heal as well. I had to overcome the fear of being seen and speaking in front of others in order to pursue this path. I did it scared and I did it anxious but I did it anyways because I knew I was meant to do this work. I overcame these challenges by doing the things that scared me instead of allowing them to hold me back and finding ways to support myself throughout the process.

The biggest lesson I learned along the way is that I can trust myself. Anyone who has dealt with narcissistic abuse knows that this is a huge win. I’ve learned that I have a very strong connection to my intuition and that above all else I can rely on it and trust myself.

When I share the challenging sides of my story I do so in the hopes that someone else might see themselves in me. I hope to share my humanity along with the successful parts of my story. So often we see the “highlight reels” of peoples lives now and miss the opportunity to truly connected over the raw truth of someone else’s story. It may not be pretty or packaged up in a nice way but it’s my truth and it’s worth sharing if just one other person finds something in it that inspires them or makes them feel less alone. I’ve come up against multiple challenges while pursuing my path as a sound healer and I continue to do so. Yet I refuse to give up. I was guided intuitively to pursue this path and I know in my heart I am exactly where I am meant to be so when challenges arise I do my best not to allow them to push me off my path. Has it been easy? Not always. But has it been worth it? Absolutely yes.

What I want the world to know about me is that I am just a person, pursuing a dream, trusting my intuitive nudges, and sharing my gifts with the world as a result. Sound baths have helped me heal, regulate my nervous system, and find peace within during the most challenging and painful times of my life. So I offer them in hopes that they will do the same for others. My story is still ongoing. I’m just past my second year of creating a sound healing business. I currently offer small intimate sound baths out of my home in a way that I want to and that I feel is most supportive for others. I also created an intuitive sound healing training and mentorship program that I have been offering since February of this year. The way I am currently showing up as a sound healer and what I have created in spite of all I’ve had to overcome is what I am most proud of and excited about.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
My favorite place to be is the beach. That’s where I would take an out of town friend. My favorite activity currently is the MindTravel Live silent piano experience by composer Murray Hidary on Santa Monica beach. He offers them once a month and you can set up a little picnic to enjoy before the event begins. The experience is unlike anything I have ever done before and each time is different and so nourishing. Because you are wearing headphones the whole time, you can walk around the beach if you want to or dip your toes in the ocean as he takes you on a musical journey while he plays his piano. It’s unreal!

I’m a bit of a homebody and have sensory processing sensitivities so when it comes to doing things in the city I opt for the more relaxing experiences that aren’t going to overwhelm me or my nervous system. I do love to occasionally go out to eat though and prefer outdoor dining if possible. Especially in the summertime where it’s still warm in the evening. My favorite outdoor patio is Gracias Madre so that would likely be on the itinerary as well.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
When I started to share with the people closest to me that I wanted to close my salon studio and end my 16 year hair career to pursue sound healing I was always met with a supportive response. My friends encouraged me to trust my intuition and move in that direction. They also reminded me that I would always be a hairstylist, those skills won’t just disappear and at any time I can return to them if needed. I distinctly remember calling my Grandma one day in tears saying that I was unsure if I had made the right decision and she reminded me that everything I have ever pursued I have succeeded in. I think about that conversation often because she was right and I had never noticed that about myself until she pointed it out.

Red Diamond Yoga and specifically the owner Kevin, was a huge support to me in the beginning of my sound healer journey. Kevin hired me as a sound healer for all three of his Red Diamond Yoga Studios about a month after I became certified. This was during the summer of 2020 when many yoga studios had been shut down due to covid so there wasn’t a ton of opportunity to work with studios but Kevin had access to outdoor spaces to safely continue offering classes to the community. He placed me in charge of organizing the sound healing events for the studios and gave me multiple opportunities a week to provide sound baths at his studios. I will always be grateful for the opportunities he gave me, the trust he had in me, and the wonderful experiences I had working with him and all of the Red Diamond teachers. I was able to discover who I was as a sound healer and how I wanted to offer my sound baths as a result of working at Red Diamond Yoga. It was the foundation in which I was able to build my confidence and skills as a sound healer.

Books that have inspired me along the way and encouraged me to pursue the path I am current on are: Rise Sister Rise by Rebecca Campbell, All of the books by Esther and Jerry Hicks which I’ve read multiple times, and anything by Gabby Bernstein who continually inspires me, especially her latest book Happy Days.

Website: www.amandathealchemist.com

Instagram: @amandathealchemist

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/IntuitiveSoundHealingLA

Yelp: https://www.yelp.com/biz/intuitive-sound-healing-los-angeles

Image Credits
Photos in the garden (outdoor space) were taken by a professional photographer Justine Maldonado, www.justinemaldonado.com

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