Interview: Zoe K M Foster, a visionary creative, artist, and author

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Zoe K M Foster, a visionary creative, artist, and author, embarked on her journey in the health and wellbeing industry after confronting her chronic illness head-on in 2012. This pivotal moment led her through an intense healing crisis, ultimately sparking a profound spiritual awakening. Zoe’s commitment to holistic wellness has since shaped her approach to life and business, guiding her towards a path of self-discovery and creative expression. Wellbeing Magazine shat’s to Zoe about her own personal wellbeing journey and her vision for the future.

Can you share a pivotal moment or experience that inspired you to start your journey? 

Absolutely! Although I could easily point to a hundred sliding-doors moments, and even a handful of highly significant ones, I have to say that being forced to really look my chronic illness in the face and take charge of my own health around 2012 was THE pivotal moment for me. 

From here, I was plunged directly into an intense and horrific healing crisis which involved Topical Steroid Withdrawal at its core – something that has become commonly known about and reported over 10 years on. But at the time, nobody knew about it and it was outright denied by the medical profession. Going into withdrawal from prescription medication for my asthma, eczema and year-round allergies and infections was my only choice as I’d spent the last few years racking up more and more health issues, which were leaving me unable to look after my babies or function remotely “normally” on a daily basis. 

This withdrawal ultimately led me to questioning every single thing about my life and how I looked after myself – on a fully embodied level. It also, as is so often the case, catapulted me into an astronomical spiritual awakening!

Tell us a little bit about your business? 

Like most self-employed people over the last decade, I’ve evolved a fair bit! I feel like I’m finally doing and being the thing my soul always intended and desired most for me – I’m an artist, author and visionary creative. 

I create immersive energy landscapes for rebel women and sacred spaces – art you can really lose yourself within and use it to nourish, support and truly feed all of your own soul-led dreams. I create this lifesize art by getting onto the canvas and into the media – paint, oilsticks, inks, gold leaf – and bringing to each piece a fully integrated, embodied, energetic intention. In this way, every piece I create is utterly unique and bursting with heart-soulfull energies! Crucially, I am helping my audience and buyers to really embody, play with and adore their highest spiritual desires in a fully grounded, sensual and multi-sensory way.

How do you prioritise your own wellbeing while running a business?

I love this question, because it has changed so very much for me over the years. I have definitely learned to tap into what I most need day-to-day now, rather than following a routine. Loving kindness is always at the core of my wellbeing approach, whether it’s waking up and taking a few breaths to arrive into my day, as I enjoy the snuggly coziness of my duvet cave, or remembering to breathe loving energy through my body as I explore my yoga practice (rarely easy, just saying!). I have found this makes the biggest difference of all to how I feel, and how much energy I have. 

Typically, I include some me-time at the start of the day, after the school run. I’ll make myself a mushroom coffee, vacuum the living room and roll out my yoga mat. I have a really amazing library of music which I put on shuffle and it helps me to shift into my multidimensional self! My yoga practice is fully embodied, so I focus on responding to how I feel and what I most need that day, physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. I include breathwork, tapping, clearing and reiki, and my movement is very fluid. Some days I might only fit in 5 or 10 minutes, and other days over an hour. It’s taken me a long time, but I’m about 95% happy with this balance now.

I used to follow a strict habit of no phone usage before I’d finished my morning practice – which is incredibly lovely and absolutely makes a huge difference to how you respond to the day – but life has crept in this past year and instead, I make sure that I take long intentional breaks, and don’t get sucked into social media or emails before 11 if possible! 

Crucially, I’ve also embraced making myself and my needs the priority in my business. This is so hard to actually feel good about, when you know there are people waiting on replies to emails, messages and so on, but I’ve learned that it really is best all round. So for example, I won’t reply to an email or work on a project unless I’m absolutely an energetic fit for it. Sometimes that means honouring where I’m at, and sometimes intentionally bringing the energy it requires – typically it’s both.

As a creative, it’s been fundamental for me to find and really embrace my own rhythms too. Often I want to work on a creative project – including my art! – late at night, or in the middle of the night. Of course it’s not always practical, but the more I lean into this (and don’t burn myself out), the more I feel balanced. The 9-5 structure has never worked for me, and yet I’m still deconditioning myself from it – especially hard when you have a kid at school and your hub works in retail!

What role has your personal wellness played in overcoming obstacles and maintaining resilience in the entrepreneurial journey?

I’m not sure if I’m fortunate or extremely unlucky (my attitude wavers!) but my wellness has always been inextricably linked to my business journey. I first went self employed at 26, after going through a nervous breakdown at work. I already knew then that I wanted desperately to make creativity the mainstay of my “work”, and so I started out my self-employment as a part-time craftworker and designer.

Over the years – navigating chronic health issues, having babies, living off grid in vans and boats, and then going through a cataclysmic healing crisis – my health has necessarily been at the forefront of my business model. It has always dictated what I needed most from my business, and when and how. I’m naturally stubborn and passionate by nature, so in some ways this has actually helped me to make great, illogical leaps, as well as learning to really honour my own energies rather than what’s somehow “expected”. It has also lent me an unprecedented level of resilience, as I know what I can go through and still survive. I’ve always been a creative problem-solver, but being an entrepreneur with over a decade of intense healing, plus kids and financial crises thrown into the mix, has strengthened the belief that I can do anything as long as it feels right to me. If it doesn’t feel right, I’ve also learned there’s no way anyone is ever going to make me do it!

How has your own wellbeing philosophy influenced your business?

That energy really is everything, and you can create those energies around as well as within you. Some days you might only be able to bring 10% intentional energy, and other days it can be 110%, but it always, always makes a difference! As humans, we straddle multiple worlds without often acknowledging it, and that’s why I implore everyone to fully embody their energies – you can try and be “high vibe” all you want, but if your body, mind and emotional being hasn’t integrated it, it won’t last.

What self-care practice has had a significant impact on your overall wellbeing?

Ooooh that is a toughie! Rather than a single practice, it’s probably more of an approach to all my practices now. I don’t believe in single fixes, especially as we are rhythmic, cyclical beings. I’d say learning to be fluid rather than militaristic, and focusing on love over specific goals, has seen the biggest shift in both my wellbeing and biz. When I created and published my book, It’s Written in the Stars: Poems, reflections & transmutations on becoming, it was love that saw me through the whole project. I’ve been a writer since I could write, but I’d never finished a book until I focussed on being in love with what I was creating, rather than the end goal of having a book etc.

How do you stay updated on the latest wellness trends

Well I can say for a start that I don’t follow trends – I’m more like the anti-trend follower if anything! I have always followed and listened to people I really respect in the wellness space. Up to 5 years ago, that was still a lot of male podcasters like Rich Roll, Dave Asprey, Rangan Chatterjee and the like. This is when I got into fasting (intermittent and longer 2-5 days) and cold water therapy amongst other things. Since then, I’ve dived unapologetically into the full feminine side of the wellness space, from natural hormone balancing to unveiling and acknowledging the Mother wound. 

I am incredibly fortunate to be surrounded by really brilliant peers across the spectrum of wellbeing, and the majority of them are women. I just keep thinking, “what a time to be alive and learning from other women on how to actually live your best life as a woman” . Then again, I am 44 and perimenopausal, and so a part of me is also enraged that it took me this long just to begin to understand my own needs, let alone respond to them!

For the record, I still use fasting and cold therapy and love them. But I’m also balancing the scales out in other ways too. My favourite ways of keeping up to date with what’s going is tuning into my besties in the space, mainly through podcasts, instagram and Facebook. 

Have there been moments where you had to make choices that challenged your personal values for the sake of business growth?

I’d say this is inevitable, especially in the online space. Today it looks like me putting out an instagram post regularly, because I know I need to stay visible in the space. (This doesn’t stop me being inconsistent and taking long breaks though!). But in the past it has also seen me take on coaches who promised the world, and who were so magnetic I couldn’t see their energy and approach was utterly out of alignment with my own needs. 

Ultimately, those situations taught me something valuable I needed to know about myself. They also taught me (again and again) where I really needed to pay attention to my core soul needs and desires, rather than external expectations and glittery must-haves. 

For me, it always comes back to feeling over looking: does this feel ‘right’ rather than just looking ‘right’? And if you get it wrong (which you will), what can you takeaway from it, and how can you keep loving yourself through the fallout?

Has their been a particular setback that taught you a valuable lesson about the importance of wellbeing?

When I first plunged into my healing journey, I approached it like a military campaign: strict raw vegan diet, drinking green smoothies and eating dehydrated flax bread; I even got myself into a tizz over whether the spices I was using were technically “raw”. Over the years, I applied this same approach to yoga (astanga sequences were my mainstay), supplementation, relationships, childcare and my business – basically, I had never been taught how to have healthy boundaries, and so my natural reaction to needing them was to put up rigid barriers, preferably with lots of space around them!

Simultaneously, I never took my hypersensitivity seriously. I always saw it as a detractor, something that made me flaky, unprofessional and “less than” in any situation or relationship. Now, I understand more fully that my hypersensitivity is what makes me so creative, with a burning need to express myself through the embodied energies of my art. Honouring this has also helped me create really breathable, beautifully golden boundaries which reflect where I am and need to be in that moment.

Are there any projects you are currently working on?

I actually have an incredibly exciting vision for the next few years and I’m very much treading the slackline between feeling it may never happen and knowing in my core that I am already making it happen! 

All I can say is that my art will be getting bigger, and even more immersive! I’m laying the groundwork for some big energy-art installations, focussed on the themes of being and becoming – not as productive machines but as highly multidimensional and multisensory, energy beings. Follow me for updates!

My own personal journey has revolved around the need for me to take up space – physically and energetically. Each year has seen me take bolder moves in this, from beginning my SacredExpression Method in 2017 (getting on a 2×1.5m bit of paper and getting loose and messy!), to finally coming back to largescale painting in 2020, and letting myself paint bigger every year. With my own incredibly-manifested, purpose-built barn studio now, I have few excuses to really take up as much space as I want!

What legacy do you hope to leave?

Invariably, the message that always comes out of whatever I am sharing at any given point in time, is “Learn how to be you, and give yourself the permission and freedom to play with that you-ness in all the other dimensions you can imagine, and beyond. Never stop playing, exploring and letting yourself be genuinely surprised at how magical you really are.”

The rebel in me also wants to add: do whatever you can in your life to fundamentally question what’s expected of you, whoever is creating that expectation!

Zoe K M Foster’s journey in the health and wellbeing industry is one of resilience, self-discovery, and creative expression. Through confronting her own chronic illness and embracing holistic wellness, she has not only transformed her personal life but has also carved a unique path in her entrepreneurial endeavours. With a commitment to authenticity and self-care, Zoe continues to inspire others to embrace their true selves and live their best lives.

www.zoekmfoster.com

Instagram, Facebook, Substack, X, LinkedIn, YouTube – all @zoekmfoster

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