Coach, Cartoonist and Author. Advocate of connection, not perfection. Agent of curiosity & creativity.
| Crusher of Shoulds |
Alissa Zorn is a trauma-informed coach, cartoonist, author, and founder of the website Overthought This. She's passionate about helping people undo perfectionism and shame to build authentic, joyful lives. Alissa is certified through the International Coach Federation and got her Trauma-Informed Coaching certification from Moving the Human Spirit. She wrote Bounceback Parenting: A Field Guide for Creating Connection, Not Perfection, and is always following curiosity to find her next creative endeavor.
What do you do when your life starts to feel like it’s suffocating you?
On the surface things looked great, I had all the things one “should” want - marriage, house, kids, a business... but at 37 this life started feeling like a boa-constrictor. The expectations I was trying to live up to and the emotions I was trying to manage for everyone ELSE were squeezing joy and possibility right out of me.
I no longer had a sense of self. I wasn’t connected to what I wanted and I felt responsible for everyone else's happiness. I felt resentful, confused, and distressingly numb. I couldn’t even connect with anger at that time, I just felt cold inside.
At this point in my life my kids were out of the young-kid phase and I finally had a bit more time to myself. I started training jiu jitsu, and it unexpectedly brought me back home to myself. For the first time in my life I realized that I was worth fighting for - and more importantly, that I could fight for myself. It felt like waking up back in my body; I began reclaiming myself.
Later that year Penguin published my book Bounceback Parenting and I had another realization that shook me completely. I realized I’d spent my life up to that point trying to find worth and validation outside myself. I never felt safe or “enough”. And then here was this huge external validation: Penguin publishing my book! But I still felt unsafe, unworthy.
And it struck me: that unworthy, unsafe feeling was never going to be resolved by achieving something outside myself - because it was from inside me. The outer world wouldn’t resolve it. I had a lot of work to do.
I began going to therapy, processing childhood wounds and generational dysfunction. My life changed drastically during this time - my marriage fell apart and I went from being a primary caregiver to a mom with 50/50 custody of my kids. Friendships and family relationships shifted and in some cases fell away.
I felt like I’d taken my life and set it in flames. It was the most scared I have ever been. And yet I also felt a sense of hope as I had fleeting glimpses of feeling safe and free.
I began discovering strength and resilience in myself that I had rarely accessed in the past. I discovered that maybe it was possible to love myself.
I started drawing comics as a way to process and gain clarity.
I started sharing these comics on Instagram and my art attracted the interest of other people going through similar life transformation. It felt great to find community who could connect with this awkward, new and more free phase of my life.
I began coaching others on how to process their own hidden emotions through drawing. I’d always had a knack for helping people find helpful insights, so I took steps to get certified by the International Coaching Federation to give me even more structure and knowledge as a professional Coach.
Trauma Informed coaching gives me the ability to hold safe space for my clients as they let go of feelings of helplessness, and open up to a whole new range of emotional expression and creative energy.
I offer coaching in a one-on-one setting (which can include using drawing/art if you wish, or not), as well as in a group setting in my “Draw Yourself Out” workshops.
I got my Trauma Informed Certification so I could confidently work with people healing from emotional trauma.
This restorative coaching brings transformative results to my clients.
My workshops are for everyone – you don’t have to be an “artist” to take them.
People who couldn’t even doodle find that they get equally powerful results as experienced artists. Remember, this work isn’t about external achievement – it’s about feeling safe and free to be yourself.
My Comics, My Private Coaching, and My Group Workshops are all available online!