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Exploring Life & Business with Edie Sohigian of Thriving Over Surviving Podcast

Today we’d like to introduce you to Edie Sohigian. 

Hi Edie, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
Picture it… pandemic, home with my puppy, trying to find something to do, so I started surfing social media. I was on all the majors (except for the Tok), but just as a very casual user. As I began forming connections with others, I realized what a powerful tool it was. My eyes began to open and see possibilities I had only dreamed about.

Backing up a bit, I am an educator by day. In my 21st year now, I can’t see myself doing anything else. I love school, which is why I kept going back myself, earning my doctorate in 2015. But as we were amid the pandemic, I wanted to use my spare time for other pursuits.

Also in 2015, I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS). It is a chronic, typically progressive disease involving damage to the sheaths of nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. For me, symptoms include numbness, severe fatigue, and brain fog to name a few. Others suffer from things like impairment of speech, loss of muscular coordination, loss of vision, seizures, bladder issues, and more. The MS community is a tight-knit group of people. I specifically found this as I was diving into social media. And so sprung my idea for the podcast.

The Thriving Over Surviving Podcast first aired on July 12, 2021. Why thriving over surviving? Well, I feel that mindset is everything. I don’t just want to be okay. I want to be the very best version of myself and that begins with my outlook on life.

I chat it up with other thrivers who lean into their core values, such as gratitude, faith, and humor, to truly live their best lives despite chronic illness. Medical cannabis, mobility aids, nutrition, and bedwetting are often discussed because let’s face it, this disease isn’t all peaches and roses. We need to acknowledge the hard stuff and work through it before we can begin to see that light through the clouds.

My core values are growth and humor so we tend to laugh quite a bit, but also learn from each other. I think that makes the podcast a bit unique. Although we do hit the hard topics, we are always enjoying ourselves. Now, approaching season three, the show’s popularity has grown beyond my expectations. What started out as a fun project has become a place where people come to get information, network with others in the MS community, and walk away with a smile on their faces.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall, and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
I am such a planner, but when so many things are unknown, it is challenging to navigate all the pitfalls that might occur when beginning a new adventure like a podcast. I know, everyone seems to have one (a podcast), right? Well, do not let them fool you. It is a lot of work.

I was all in from the very beginning. I did so much research on every aspect of starting the show. I even got an LLC. I also hired a podcast coach. With all the research I did, you would have thought that finding the right coach would be a cinch. Let me tell you; there are a ton out there.

The gentleman I hired was based out of Great Britain, and his background was in business and finance. Business and finance are very far removed from my brand. But somehow, I scraped the money together to hire this person who promised me the world. Unfortunately, I would say he actually gave me the size of a small pond. Big lesson learned.

I recommend getting testimonials from people aligned with your message and in the niche, you are focused on, who have hired the coach you are interested in. Make sure this person already has a successful podcast because if you have not walked in the shoes, then what advice could you possibly offer? And most of all, be sure you know what to expect from the process, and they suit your needs. This person is working for you, after all. Oh, and communication is vital. Once a week is necessary. It holds you accountable. Just saying.

Great, so let’s talk business. Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
Thriving Over Surviving is not just a podcast. It is a place for people to get to know themselves and others in the community. The website offers opportunities to learn about your core values, which I feel helps with mindset. There is also a blog that includes personal anecdotes and notes from the show. I also offer some merch there as well.

Before we let you go, we’ve got to ask if you have any advice for those who are just starting out?
Did you know there are podcasts about podcasting? I didn’t even consider it before beginning my show. There are quite a few out there, and they all offer insightful information from people who have been in the space for years. I would begin there.

The social media sight Clubhouse is another excellent source of information. That’s where I really got the itch to begin my journey. Finding the message that aligns with your voice is most important there. You will find a lot of information, but be sure you are learning from those that will serve your specific needs.

There are also conventions. Podfest is held right here in Central Florida. I attended the online portion in the fall, and I am still sifting through all the information. There are also in-person events, so network away! There is a cost to attend, but it is well worth it.

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Edie Sohigian

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