I have always been a fairly ‘brainy’ person, a nerd some could say. But for most of my life I was not really in the driver's seat of what happened to me: I was so unsure and afraid that I never really took control of my personal life. I have had amazing work experiences but I cannot say I ever consciously chose one. Strangely (or perhaps not at all) I have always been very disciplined, committed and in control of what happened in my work space. This was all true… until recently.
Just before I turned 40 and after 2 years of continuous exhaustion doing a job I loved, I finally decided to completely rethink my life. So, I quit my safe, exciting, executive job and I went away for 6 months. Placing myself in a different (geographical and social) environment was a conscious choice. The familiarity of the status quo (what some call homeostasis) is a powerful obstacle to change, no matter how uneasy or uncomfortable that status quo may be. But growth can only come from change, transformation, learning, opening your mind to new perspectives and possibilities. At the end of this 'sabbatical' period, I decided not only to change my career but to start my own business: why wait for someone else to offer you what you want? This was by no means a path unique to me; many have done it before me and since. Yet, it is still a fairly unusual one and only a few dare to find out who they truly are, what their dreams are, and then to persevere in getting there. I am still on this journey... and I hope to never again stop travelling this road until my last day :)
I have had many labels in my life, but never really one single profession: I have worked in academia (my first ever job), in research and training, in policy-making, and NGO management. Today I am an entrepreneur, a compassionate lover, a fan of scuba-diving and movies, an enthusiastic believer in coaching and that we can all learn and go beyond wherever we are now, no matter how good (or bad) it may feel.
I am a life and career strategist! I believe in making things happen. No, not every dream can come true, but if you can imagine a way of making it happen, then you probably can indeed. Make a plan! But be flexible.
I have always valued efficiency, productivity, making the best with whatever resources you have. But I am also learning to be more patient, to understand that you cannot rush some things: that learning and growth takes times to be ‘done right’. It’s a treasure hunt and you cannot reach your goal by attempting to go directly to the treasure chest; you need to follow the clues and the different steps to it, for its location is actually not yet known…
I am in the middle of the introvert-extrovert continuum: I do enjoy being with people but parties are not my thing; I will always prefer a conversation with just 1 or 2 people, where you can really focus on listening to each person. I love to spend time on my own, and I am not sure I ever felt lonely (except maybe in those 4 years when I did my PhD and was surrounded by lovely people who could not really help me finish my task).
I have never been a fan of social media; very honestly, I check it every now and then but I use it mostly for work. Don’t expect to find me online all the time.
I am learning to be kind to myself (I always tended towards perfectionism) and to listen better to my body, to fully respect it for all it allows me to do.
I have made many mistakes in my journey, but barely any twice. Still, I think originality is overrated: Authenticity is what matters.