Terri Kozlowski – Raven Transcending Fear: A Journey from Trauma to Triumph

Terri Kozlowski’s Raw Memoir and Empowering Guide to Self-Discovery

PHOTO: Terri Kozlowski: Empowerment Advocate,
Author of ‘Raven Transcending Fear,’
and Founder of Soul Solutions,
Inspiring Others to Thrive Beyond Limitations.

Terri Kozlowski is a certified life coach, blogger, the author of “Raven Transcending Fear”, and founder of Soul Solutions. She specializes in empowering women by teaching them to set personal boundaries, reframe the stories they tell themselves, overcome their fears, and push past their limiting beliefs.  Part memoir, part self-help guide, Terri’s book is a raw and personal story of diving deep into childhood trauma, dealing with the terror before ultimately getting comfortable with fear, and transcending it. On her successful podcast and YouTube channel Soul Solutions, she delves into the soul and offers bite-sized takeaways for controlling our egos and emotions.  Terri holds a BS in Social Science, has written for Thrive Global and Medium, appeared on over 25 podcasts and has spoken to groups from 5 to 600. She has helped over 1500 people with her hard-earned wisdom.  Terri lives in Woodstock, GA with her husband and pampered chihuahua Lelu.

The journey from the pages of a gripping biography to the engaging insights of an interview with Terri Kozlowski for The Reader’s House magazine is a captivating bridge of resilience and empowerment. Terri’s life unfolds vividly in her book “Raven Transcending Fear,” a courageous blend of memoir and self-help. Her narrative not only chronicles personal triumph over childhood trauma but also serves as a guiding beacon for others seeking self-love and happiness. Through her story, she brings a raw authenticity to her teachings, having navigated the depths of despair and emerged thriving. In the interview, Terri’s wisdom shines through as she recounts her writing process, emphasizing the importance of embracing one’s unique perspective without the burden of external perceptions. Her dedication to helping others and her passion for empowering women resonate deeply, creating a seamless connection between her life’s story and her mission to uplift others through her work at Soul Solutions. The journey from her transformative experiences to her empowering words in this interview exemplifies her commitment to bridging the gap between suffering and thriving, leaving an indelible mark on those who seek inspiration and guidance.

Tell us about your book?

My book, Raven Transcending Fear, is a teaching memoir.  It’s the story of overcoming childhood trauma and abandonment by my mother. The journey I take the reader on is personal, from an abused, fearful child to a put-together adult.  To write this kind of narrative, I needed to be far enough along my healing journey to tell about the experiences without angst or pain.

What’s unique about my book is that I’ve walked through what I’m teaching. I’ve gone into the pit of despair and have come out the other side, thriving.  It provides an excellent road map for the reader to follow to find their way to self-comfort, self-love, and the ability to be truly happy in one’s own skin. Now I want to help others with a bridge from suffering over hopelessness and into thriving. That’s why it’s so important to me to serve those who are suffering.

What kind of research did I do for the book?

Since my book is a memoir, my life was my research. And it took fifty years to live before I started writing my story, despite being asked to do so over the years.  Previously, when asked, I was never going to share my story this way, but the summer before I turned fifty, I became pregnant with a book.  Although I was working over 50 hours a week, I sat at my computer on nights and weekends and 75,000 words poured out of me.  In nine months, I had a completed rough draft. 

It took eighteen months of editing to get the final version of under 50,000 words. The editing process was weeding out what was for me and what was helpful to the reader.  In the outpouring, there were many things I needed to let go of, remember, and realize that were lessons for me, not for the reader.

If I could tell my younger writing self one thing, what would it be?

Since my book is a memoir, it would be not to worry about what others may think or if their memories of the same event differ from mine. Just write. Allow it to pour out of you.  And if you get stuck, write out a question and then answer it, because sometimes you just need to start the writing process for the words to flow. This is your story, no one else’s. Therefore, tell it from your perspective, because that is all you know.

Tell us about your writing space.

Since I write on the computer, I do it in my home office. I am surrounded by good books and crystals, and I normally drink water or Earl Grey tea, hot. I use Microsoft Word for my drafts and Pro-Writing Aid as my grammar and spell checker.  Even over the past five years of writing my weekly blog, I still write at my desk with the same setup. I can write in other quiet places, as long as I have a computer.

If I could be a character from any book for 24 hours, who would I be?

Dorothy Gale after she returns from The Wizard of Oz.  Although she starts out fearful, she learns two very powerful lessons:

  1. Find your tribe of friends who love and support your authenticity.
  2. The power within her is all she needs to make her dreams come true.

These two lessons were ones I’ve learned on my journey of transcending the fear of my childhood trauma, so there is a kinship I feel with her personal growth on her journey to Oz.

What genres do you especially enjoy reading?

I usually read historical fiction or spiritual books. One entertains and provides some history, and the other feeds my soul.

Who are your favorite writers? Are there any who aren’t as widely known as they should be, whom you’d recommend in particular?

Marie Benedict’s book, The Other Einstien, introduced me to the historical fiction genre, which I hadn’t read before, as well as got me connected with a local book club. I’ve read all her books but one, and it’s on my to-be-read shelf.  The other historical fiction author I really like is Lynn Cullen. I discovered her earlier this year, and she is local here in the Atlanta area. Both of these authors look for strong women in history and bring their stories to us.  I’ve met both of these ladies, and they are phenomenal researchers as well as storytellers.

What moves you most in a work of literature?

I love to see the hero’s journey of a woman.  It reminds me that women have always struggled and have always overcome.  Whether you are the Only Woman In The Room, fighting to find a cure for polio, or Dorthy trying to get home, reading about strong women inspires us. Just as my book is my personal story of transcending fear, the more stories like this woman can read the stronger women can become through the sisterhood of triumph and perseverance.

What books and authors have impacted your writing career?

Marianne Williamson, Deepak Chopra, and Don Miguel Ruiz have been the most impactful writers in my writing career. Marianne introduced me to The Course In Miracles, which opened my eyes to see past my inner turmoil. Deepak moved me to examine the mind-body connection, how everything is energy, and therefore how we are all connected.  Don Miguel and his family grounded me back into my Native American heritage in a way that allowed me to see and forgive my mother for the trauma she caused in my childhood.

What do you read when you’re working on a book? And what kind of reading do you avoid while writing?

As I am now working on a seven-book series called Soul Solutions, I try to read only fiction and avoid reading non-fiction.  Since I write non-fiction, I want what I am writing to be from me, through me, and from my unique perspective. Therefore, reading fiction allows for imagination to be open without facts and others opinions, even those I admire, don’t get filtered into my writing. 

PHOTO: Terri Kozlowski: Author, Life Coach,
and Fearless Trailblazer, Radiating Strength in the Face of Adversity.

Reviews of Terri’s Book, Raven Transcending Fear

Review of Raven Transcending Fear #1

What a beautifully written book. The author, Terri Kozlowski’s spiritual journey, is transformational. I so enjoyed each page, each chapter, each lesson provided in this thought-provoking book. Life is about growth. Healing, helping, and guiding your spirit is key to health and happiness. Success is an inside job, and this book will aid your spirit on your own personal journey. A great read. I highly recommend it.  

~ Dr. Eric Kaplan, three-time #1 best-selling author, who has been featured on the Dr. Oz show, Good Morning America, Primetime Live, Montel Williams, and CNBC, ABC, NBC, and Fox.  

Review of Raven Transcending Fear #2

This read has great insights into what is driving our behavior on so many levels when it comes to fears and unconscious thinking that keeps us from moving forward. I definitely recommend it. Terri is also a very clear-minded logical thinker for attacking muddy mental states. She gets to the root cause of things and can re-train your brain to see problems in a different light. I’d recommend it to anyone as a must-read on your list!!! ~ Monica Barriga, Host of Woman Of Color Talk Biz podcast

Review of Raven Transcending Fear #3

Terri’s journey from abused, fearful child to wonderfully put together adult provides an excellent road map for anyone to follow to find their way to self-comfort, self love, and the ability to be truly happen in ones own skin. Follow Terri as she finds her way from being closed-off and terrified, to being a loving, giving adult who is able to unload the fear that kept her from really emjoying life. It’s well written and truthful…and shows that you do not have to hang on to childhood hangups which keep you from sharing your heart in an open and free way. Congratulations Terri, for shedding these fears! ~ Bob Unger

Excerpt from Raven Transcending Fear: A Memoir about Overcoming Sexual Abuse, Abandonment and Discover Your Authentic Self  



Raven; the bringer of light





Knowing its purpose;

Confident and ready.

As all children are, I was born unafraid.  I came into this world, knowing that I am a being of light. I understood that I am worthy.  I  recognized that I am here to love and be loved. I came knowing what I am supposed to do. Aware of my full potential.  Confident and ready to fulfill my purpose.   Moving forward into the unknown without fear; fear is a learned behavior.  This unknown shaped me.  The family I was born into in November 1968, is the first unknown I encountered.

Born into this Earth school, my parents give me a name—Terri Marie.  They give me a religion—Lutheran. I am born with an ethnicity into a family that has its own set of baggage that they inadvertently pass on to me.  This new family told me who I am, not necessarily allowing me to develop as God intended, as a human being of love. 

Seeing pictures of myself taken when I was little, I see a spunky, carefree individual whose light is so bright I glow.  There’s a glint in my eye and a big smile on my round chubby face.  The little girl I see in the picture is ready to take on the world, with confidence and fearlessness.  I know where I’m going and what I intend to do with my life.

For my grandmother’s upcoming birthday, my dad, a professional photographer, took me to his studio to take some pictures of me.  With the lights shining down on my brilliant yellow dress, he claimed that I intently watched him the entire time he photographed me.  He didn’t pose me in any way; he believed in natural shots of me just being me.  He says that during this photoshoot, I carefully scrutinized what he was doing and how he was doing it.  The looks and expressions I gave him were silent messages; messages that he wasn’t doing it correctly.  My eyes told him volumes of information—mainly that he should listen to what I had to say, despite not being able to converse.  I always seemed to have an answer, even if I wasn’t asked a question. He declares that one day, I went from being his little girl to being a 40-year-old woman, instantaneously.

My paternal grandmother told an amusing story that illustrates my self-determined nature.  When I was just two-and-a-half years old, my mother put me and my litter sister, Tammi, down for a nap and made a phone call in the other room of our apartment.  I wasn’t sleepy—I was hungry, and I wanted a snack.  My sister was sound asleep in her crib, so I got out of bed.  I put on my rubber galoshes with no socks and headed down the steep flight of steps to my grandmother’s apartment.  My grandparents owned the apartment building on Clay Avenue in downtown Jeannette, a small town in Western Pennsylvania.

When I got down the steps, I went looking for my grandmother.  I looked in the kitchen where she usually was, but couldn’t find her.  I searched in her bedroom, but she wasn’t there either.  I searched behind the large wooden doors of the sitting room, but I still didn’t find her.  So, I headed down another very steep set of stairs, through the first heavy door to the foyer.  Another heavy door and a few more steps, and I had made it out to the busy main street of town. 

I walked with determination about a block down the street all by myself to Duncan Hardware, the store that my grandparents owned.  I stood outside, looking through the large, hefty glass door of the shop as it was too heavy for me to open.  The clerks inside recognized me and opened the door to let me in.  It was an ample supply store that smelled like oil and wood.  It had tall ladders on wheels that moved back and forth, so the clerks could climb up to get items for the customers.  I walked straight to the back of the building.  I went right past my grandfather, directly past the penny nail display that I loved to play in, to where my grandmother’s office was—she was the bookkeeper for the store. I marched right up to her, very confidently, and asked for a cookie for the doll I had brought with me on my venture.  Grandma described me as a very independent and fearless little girl.

PHOTO: Raven Transcending Fear:
Terri Kozlowski’s Journey from Trauma to Triumph,
Captured in Pages of Empowerment.”

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