Hello + Sparkles!!! I’m Stella Autumn, an Intuitive Mindset Coach.
A couple of things you should know about me right off the bat:
*I don’t like cheesecake (but I adore cupcakes!)
*I love summer dresses + combat boots.
*I live in magic + mystery.
*I take my coffee + hot chocolate together.
*I play Dungeons + Dragons (nerd alert!), am an insatiable book lover, + wordsmith.
*I left my law career to help women shine.
*New York Native transplanted to the Pacific Northwest.
*Loves Nature (and CATS)
*My heroes are Tori Amos, Mariska Hargitay (Olivia Benson SVU), Taylor Swift, + Becky Lynch.
If you made it this far, why HELLO FRIEND! But, seriously…
I hold a certification in Life + Personal Development Coaching (C.L.C.) from the Women’s Leadership Institute for Conscious Coaching (WLICC). While attending WLICC, I studied under Dr. Sunny Massad, Ph.D., founder + retired psychologist, and Jessie Mowry, Certified UnTherapy Practitioner, in the UnTherapy coaching methodology, which blends principles of Western psychology with Eastern philosophy, respects one’s intuition + inner wisdom, and promotes creative right-brained positive (solution-oriented) psychology to train your mind to be a compassionate + dedicated life manager to your heart’s desires, turning dreams of living a creative, authentic life into reality.
Additionally, I was certified in Sexual Assault Crisis Advocacy from The Rowan Center (Stamford, CT) in 2013. I graduated with a Juris Doctor (J.D.) from the Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University in 2012 and with a B.S. in Criminal Justice (magna cum laude) from the University of New Haven in 2008.
I founded SoulFire Tribe with the mission to empower free-spirited, heart-centered, badass women on a journey of self-discovery to heal past traumas and limiting beliefs, discover the goddess within to create a deeper connection with themselves through powerful mindset shifts + epic self-love, and creatively weave together their passions + dreams to create a practical action plan so they can walk confidently into their best life on a path aligned with their passions + purpose.
But if I’m going to be honest, I never planned on being an entrepreneur, or intuitive mindset coach. Really, if you told me three years ago I’d be doing this, I would’ve looked at you like you are crazy!
So let me tell you a little more about me + my story.
Before I started SoulFire Tribe, I was working as a lawyer for a national disability law firm and advocacy company and traveling A LOT for work (but not the fun kind of travel *le sigh*). I had previously done a lot of work in my career in the women’s empowerment, feminism, and anti-violence movements, particularly working with survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence, and child abuse, and so I had long considered starting a women’s empowerment movement or blog or something (the dream was kinda fuzzy back then), but my crazy lawyer life never gave me the time! (Seriously, I was traveling so much I was barely in any place for more than 48 hours at a time, including my own home!)
And then after 3 years of working for the law firm, they closed down due to financial issues and I WAS LAID OFF!
My Dirty Little Secret: As confident as I wanted to seem that being laid off was no biggie, I felt very lost and scared! No joke: like heart-thumping, racing thoughts, crying in the shower, daily panic attacks kind of scared.
Lost at a crossroads, I was unsure where I wanted to take my career, myself, my life, everything. It felt like I was STILL trying to answer the question: “What do I want to be when I grow up?”
I knew I didn’t want to continue in law because it was making me miserable + turning me into a person I despised (again) after I had fought so hard to regain my inner balance (…more on that in a minute). The stress from a law career + the constant travel had left me exhausted + been wreaking havoc on my circadian rhythms + immune system. I knew a lifestyle change was imperative. But I wasn’t sure how I could bridge my skills into a career that I loved, that would be financially sustainable, and gave me more freedom + flexibility in my life.
So I did some soul searching. I loved the parts of my prior jobs where I got to help people, especially other women. I got such a joy out of seeing the light click on and the fire rise inside them when they got some clarity and figured out what they needed to do in life. Seeing a woman strong in her power (or even just a little more confident than before) is simply one of the coolest things to witness.
And I talked with my amazing group of girlfriends and GUESS WHAT I FOUND OUT?! Most of them struggled with the same issues: uncertainty of what path to forge in life, confidence issues, finding + keeping their passions, feeling out of balance, feeling like they could be thriving at this life thing rather than just surviving — wanting their lives to blossom + flow more — but not sure how to get there. (And from my experience in working with women, these are very common issues!)
Girl, I totally get it! But the funny thing is most of my life people have been asking me for guidance… and that’s when I discovered my superpower! I love listening, dissecting a problem, and playing with it until a solution comes to light. I love sharing what I’ve learned on my life journey and empowering others to figure out what works for them! All of a sudden, this little women’s empowerment passion project I had rolling around in my head started to look like it might become something waaayyy bigger.
I laugh because it reminds me of a Tori Amos lyric “I tried to strike a deal with the universe – me and my deals with the universe.” (If you keep rolling with me, you’ll quickly learn I LOVE Tori Amos!) I once told the Universe I didn’t have time to do this women’s empowerment thing because of my job. The Universe answered back with making sure that lawyer job was not going to be a problem anymore. (Stella-Tip: Be more specific when asking the Universe for help.)
This is the inspiration behind SoulFire Tribe, but that was just the most recent chapters in my life.
Once upon a time, things used to be really different for me…
Even as a little girl, I struggled with issues of insecurity, attachment, and self-esteem that related back to my adoption as a baby (it’s funny because even though I had a surface understanding of why I felt and acted the way I did, I didn’t even realize quite how deeply this was ingrained in my unconscious mind + affecting my life until a journal entry I had done during some deep shadow work a few years ago). I also was born with a brain not wired for normalcy which allows me dazzling sparks of intense creativity but also inflicts horrible streaks of intense depression and anxiety. For a lot of my life, I had a weird dichotomy going on where I was a total struggling perfectionist + people pleaser inside, but I had a way of appearing like I was a strong, confident, independent woman on the outside. I made decisions based on what others’ wanted, but I could play it off like it was all my idea. I could play a million different roles, be a reflection for what others wanted to see me as, and yet all those roles were often parts of me, but not the whole me. I was the best actress you never heard of.
As a child though, there’s something a little bit magical about that time when you aren’t as self-aware or aware as much of other’s opinions, but as I got more into my teenage years and early adulthood the struggles I described above only got worse.
My journey into self-discovery + self-love began over 15 years ago although I hardly knew what to call it then. I had started waking up to the reality of the world we live in – that you can find equal rights for women in written laws, but often not practiced in society. Even in my childhood faith of Catholicism, everything was viewed through the prism a singular male god, and women held a second-class status. There seemed to be a cognitive dissonance between the smart, “confident”, and the stubborn little girl I had been, and the confusion, uncertainty, and hurt I was beginning to feel as a young adult.
Well, the stubbornness didn’t fade. I’ve had my share of private pity parties, but I never intend to stay there.
So I turned to my first true love — books. I read about history, ancient matriarchal civilizations, the suppression of women’s rights with the rise of patriarchal civilizations; about feminine-centered spirituality, reverence for the Divine Feminine, the SHE; the connection between the devaluation of the feminine and the desecration of the earth; sociology and patterns of oppression. I read, and cried, and got fire red angry. I also found comfort that this awakening might be the start of a new chapter.
But life moves in a spiral, not a straight line. You are constantly coming back to things + integrating new information to get to the next level deeper.
Over the next few years, a series of traumatic events took a toll on me:
*my parent’s divorce in my early adulthood (ages 18-20) that shredded any foundation of safety + security that I had
*sexual assault by an acquaintance
*a toxic relationship filled with verbal blows emotional manipulation, gaslighting, mind games, and ending in a physical altercation and rape
*the chronic depression I’ve had since childhood onsetting into bipolar disorder
*the suicide of a good friend
For a while, I didn’t know how to cope. Partially because in the naivete of my youth, I hadn’t consciously realized the extent of what I experienced, but you better believe my subconscious knew.
For a time, I was numb. I got lost in the woods. I didn’t care about myself very much. I dropped out of college + stopped writing, poetry, and most artistic efforts, and became a pretty miserable person. I numbed out using music, film/TV, social media, friends, clubs, parties, + shows — anything LOUD — to distract me from being alone in my own head.
On a daily basis:
*my inner mean girl screamed “you’re not good enough”
*I was in overdrive being a struggling perfectionist + people pleaser
*I felt disconnected from myself, I was dying for the confidence to say NO, set boundaries, make big decisions, + speak up, and dying to say YES to new adventures, opportunities to engage in the things I loved and be around people who made my heart sing, but didn’t have the confidence.
*I was resentfully giving my time + energy away to unfulfilling jobs + toxic people.
And in the midst of reeling and patchwork healing, I was ensnared in a web spun by a narcissistic sociopath pretending to be a friend who attempted to destroy the small threads of the life tapestry I was starting to weave for myself. (Spoiler Alert: She did not win, but there’s a reason Taylor Swift’s revenge songs hold a special catharsis for me — dancing with my shadows indeed.)
But like I’ve said, I never intend to stay at a pity party. And I couldn’t go on becoming my own pretty hate machine, living in this foggy, virtual reality version of my life — like a fuzzy, muted grey film over everything — a shadow of myself. Winding myself up in the spin-cycle of negative emotions: big moods + loud blow-ups, then reeling in shame + guilt at the lash outs + messes I was creating. Swinging between the crippling depression of never wanting to get out of bed + wildly dashing around New York City, New Haven, and Stamford as a manic party girl, a goth scene diva desperate to hide how dead I truly was inside. Running from one expensive private school + fancy degree to another, one prestigious job to another, trying to gain the love and approval from family, friends, the world that I wasn’t giving to myself.
And in the end, when you burn too brightly, you burn out fast. It was like “driving a new Maserati down a dead-end street” (to quote Taylor Swift). I was exhausted of trying to “fake it ’til I made it”, of trying to be someone I wasn’t, of having to jump through hoops for approval and happiness that could always be taken away because it was based on external factors: other people, events, places, jobs, things. The emptiness of being “surface happy” but not “soul happy”. I couldn’t imagine living like this forever. There had to be something more for me — a better me, the real me, and a better life — that maybe just maybe my dream life could be my real life, my best life.
I didn’t know how to start, but I couldn’t stay where I was, so slowly one step at a time, I walked my way towards healing, towards, self-discovery, towards a love built from within.
I found solace and healing, instead of distraction, in books and in music. I got back involved with my passions, hobbies, + creative pursuits (I was even a DJ and event organizer for a goth club night and a few goth music festivals for a time).
I went back to college and then onto law school determined to study the thing that drove me away – violence against women. I studied criminology, victimology, forensic psychology, sex crimes, domestic violence, women’s studies, criminal law + procedure, victim’s services + administration. I’ve held positions in several district attorneys offices and victim service organizations working on issues of sex crimes, domestic violence, child abuse, and women’s empowerment from the angles of law, public policy, social service, + social justice.
I threw myself deep into healing, personal + spiritual. I got some therapy, life coaching, and practice self-care. I don’t run from my shadows anymore; I kick in their door, and invite myself in for tea + a heart to heart. I’ve allowed myself to deepen my spiritual connection with the Divine, connect with the sacredness in myself, and have respect for my intuition, through both independent study and working with some phenomenal mentors, teachers, and coaches.
Over a DECADE, and after a ton of stops & starts, wrong paths, getting lost, backtracking, figuring out what worked for me, what didn’t, trying and failing, and trying again, puzzle after puzzle to crack the code, I pieced myself back together — a mosaic of colorful broken shards glued together with the love I found within myself. From sharp, rough edges + jagged pieces into a beautiful new wholeness — a stained glass window reflecting dazzling lights across the rooms I walk in, bringing joy, beauty, and a little bit of magic wherever I go.
I am now wildly in love with the life I’ve created — and no, it’s not perfect + neither am I! But I live with so much more joy, peace, balance, freedom, hope, + abundance now. I found a way to become besties with myself + have a deep, loving, healthy inner relationship. To show up as the creative, free-spirited, heart-centered, badass woman I am + experience the grace, strength, beauty + confidence that flows from living in my power. To take all that fire inside of me + flow with my energy instead of always shadowboxing against myself. I feel beautiful, sacred, + strong in my feminine power, tapping into my inner magic to continuously grow + evolve with grace. I wake up feeling nurtured + loved, cocooned in a lifestyle that honors my passions, talents, values, wellness, + free, creative spirit, where I feel aligned in my path, + excited about the life I am intentionally creating + the adventure ahead!
I now have taken my passion for raising the vibration of women into intuitive mindset coaching.
I work with creative, free-spirited women who feel they could be getting more out of life, and are ready to discover the love and courage within themselves to lead joyful, balanced, abundant lives beautifully aligned with their passions + purpose.
I work with women like you because I understand what it feels like to know the only thing that is stopping you from living your best life is YOU. I know the struggle of feeling lost, not knowing who you are or what you want, but craving a life better than what you are currently living. I know what it’s like to live as a “struggling perfectionist + people pleaser” whose inner mean girl voice told me every day that I’m not “good enough” (even though deep down I knew I am a f*cking goddess). I know the feeling of lugging around old baggage from past traumas, desperate for healing because you know that healing and wholeness will breathe new life into you. I know the feeling of struggling with the confidence of whether you deserve a good life (even though deep down inside you know you do). But I have also done the inner work and have learned a system, tools, and techniques to smash down those blocks and create mindset shifts that will have you loving yourself and confident to live your best life defined by your own terms.
Through years of personal growth and working with women, I’ve discovered how magical women really are. How strong, smart, resilient, compassionate, and creative we are despite (and because of) our adversities. The Queens, and Rebels, and Unicorns we can be when we allow our inner SoulFire to blaze and light up the night.
But I know it’s not always easy to keep that SoulFire lit. Life has some strong winds and heavy downpours. But there is strength in our connection to each other. Hand by hand we pull each other up, and in each other’s arms we can celebrate on the top of the mountain together.
This is the inspiration behind SoulFire Tribe – transformational intuitive mindset coaching for women to unleash your inner goddess – to build a vibrant sisterhood of women connecting, growing, kicking ass, and taking names. My journey has a flair for the mystical and a healthy dose of badassery, and I welcome you to join me on it!
I hold a certification in Life + Personal Development Coaching from the Women’s Leadership Institute for Conscious Coaching (WLICC). While attending WLICC, I studied under Dr. Sunny Massad, Ph.D., founder and retired psychologist, and Jessie Mowry, Certified Untherapy Practitioner in the Untherapy coaching methodology, which blends principles of Western psychology with Eastern philosophy, respects one’s intuition and inner wisdom, and promotes creative right-brained positive (solution-oriented) psychology to train your mind to be a compassionate and dedicated life manager to your heart’s desires, turning dreams of living a creative, authentic life into reality.
I graduated with a Juris Doctor (J.D.) from the Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University in 2012 and with a B.S. in Criminal Justice (magna cum laude) from the University of New Haven in 2008. Additionally, I attended Marist College majoring in English (with coursework in literature analysis, creative writing, + theatre) from 2002-2004.
During college, I interned at Perverted Justice posing as a decoy online to apprehend child predators, and also worked as an event coordinator and DJ for Necropolis Events and DarkStar Festival. Upon college graduation, I accepted a position as a paralegal in the child abuse unit of the New York County (Manhattan) District Attorney’s Office.
During law school, I served as a legal intern at the Bronx County District Attorney’s Office (sex crimes and child abuse unit) and as an Honors Legal Intern at the Yonkers, NY Branch of the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office (misdemeanor domestic violence). I also held a legal internship at the Pace Women’s Justice Center’s Family Court Legal Program representing victims of domestic violence in the family courts of Yonkers, NY and White Plains, NY, and a legal research internship at the New York State Parent Education and Awareness Program.
After law school graduation, I worked as a Policy and Advocacy Fellow at the Joyful Heart Foundation in Manhattan researching issues on the rape kit backlog and DNA databank. Subsequently, I worked at The Rowan Center in Stamford, CT as the Lead Crisis Advocate and Hotline Manager, Volunteer Programs Manager, and Legislative Laison. I was hired at a national disability law firm headquartered in New York in 2014, where I represented clients at social security disability hearings across 20 states.
In 2018, I left my law career to lay the foundation of Soulfire Tribe, originally as a women’s empowerment blog, and in 2020 Soulfire Tribe launched with the focus of intuitive mindset coaching empowering creative, free-spirited women to discover their sacred power + create a beautiful life aligned with their passions and purpose.
I was born in Westchester County, NY and grew up between there and Fairfield County, CT. I moved to the west coast in September 2016. I currently reside in the Seattle-Tacoma area of Washington State with my wonderful artistic, geeky, metalhead, gamer husband and our menagerie of furry and scaley kids (2 cats, 2 guinea pigs, an aruban whiptail lizard, mandarin rat snakes, and 20+ scorpions). I love living in the Pacific Northwest with my awesome group of friends, enjoy hiking and camping, visits to museums, zoos, and aquariums, attending shows and festivals, reading, writing, poetry, film, theatre, spending time in nature, and traveling. Libraries, bookstores, and Nature are my safe spaces and I’m always looking to learn and try something new.