Airforce Veteran

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Sonya served 26 years in the Airforce. Here is her story..

Sonya: My name is Sonya and I am an Air Force veteran, with a career spanning over 26 years.

A few years ago I returned from a deployment in Afghanistan where I was soon diagnosed with a major depressive illness. This was due to ill treatment of me during the entire time that I was deployed so I found it very difficult to resume back into my old life.

Whilst I was having therapy, it became apparent that I had some fairly major work to do regarding my self worth, my body image and negative relationships I had with food. When I told my therapist about my self loathing, how I thought I was disgusting and fat and how I deprived myself of food as punishment, she was able to enlighten me that this was not normal. To me it was. I had been living like this for 40 years, 40 years of a learned behaviour.

I was an obese child and continued to see myself as that child right through to adulthood. Because of the amazing breakthroughs she was able to do with me, I now want to share this with other women and girls. We all, have some form of negative body image. All of us!! Even Miranda Kerr!

I now know it doesn’t have to be this way and you can free yourself… from your negative self. So, I am now working toward a positive body image coaching career.

Thanks to the Prince’s Charities assisting with my Cert IV in Business and Working Spirit with their wonderful connections, I am now seeing my goal getting closer.

To reach that goal, I needed money, the courses (the good ones) are expensive. So, I’ve started selling scented candles to assist me. I’ve learnt that if you want something bad enough, you go out there and you get it. I needed the money to help me fund it.

To also leverage my business, I have written a children’s book on positive body image, there really is nothing out there on this topic for little kids.

This is where this negative (or positive) body image starts. Five and six year olds are already starting with this negativity surrounding the way they look. It makes me incredibly fuelled to do something about it.

I’ve teamed up with Taryn Brumfitt of the Body Image Movement and I have been selected as a Body Image Movement Global Ambassador. The book is written and I am in consultations now with editors and illustrators. It’s my goal to have it out by Christmas.

So baby steps with my business, baby steps with self-acceptance and baby steps with my message. Girls don’t just decide to hate their bodies; we teach them. Let’s tell them a different story.

Thank you for listening.

Karyn Hinder Working Spirit Founder
Karyn Hinder
Working Spirit Founder

Karyn Hinder - Founder

Thank you Sonya for your service and good luck.

I hope this has helped someone out there, go forward and be proud! Working Spirit are highlighting veterans transition stories. If you would like to share your story or any businesses wanting to share the benefits of employing a veteran please email

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