4 Years in Aus, 3 in She Mentors, 2 Redundancies, 1 Podcast
Hello beautiful people! After a looooong break, I am BACK in blogging! 🥳
So where have I been?
Well mostly in lockdown here in Melbourne...
I have also officially become an ICF (International Coaching Federation) Certified Life Coach, celebrating 2,000 Podcast downloads, learning to run again after 11 months off, and really figuring out exactly the human, the Coach, the business woman I want to be.
Today we are reflecting - on 4 quite incredible years. It's a story I would not have believed possible in 2017, so let's start there (you know I like to start at the very beginning, it is after all a very good place to start!).
2017 - Australia
It all started with my new year's resolution: to stop my excuses, and go DO the things I really wanted to do.
I wanted to move from London to Melbourne.
I wanted to travel, and to solo travel.
I had never been backpacking before, and hadn't seen much of this big beautiful world.
So I wrote a list of what I really wanted from my solo travels (amazing food, vibrant culture, beaches and mountains, interesting history, warmth, somewhere I had never been...), bought the Lonely Planet guide to the world, and went through it with my list.
And landed on India - which ticked every box on my list, and started by booking a one way flight to New Delhi.
Then of course told my employer, my team, my friends and family I was leaving London, and off on my big adventure.
Here's the lesson - figure out what you want, then how to get it. And take the first action.
My 3 weeks solo travelling India - New Delhi, Agra, Mumbai, Goa, Kerala - were the most incredible experience. With more colour and kindness than I could have ever imagined.
Here's 3 notes from my journal while solo travelling India:
"You can get yourself out of, any trouble you get yourself into"
"The scariest parts lead to the best parts"
"Just sit, and breathe, and be" 💖
And then I landed in Australia, with no plan except to stay with my best friend in Melbourne, and see if I could build a new life here.
So I did just that - curated the personal and professional life I truly wanted. And having spent so much time while travelling with no plans, no expectations and no boundaries I really got to know myself.
Life lesson - you are a 1 in 7 billion person, so go live a 1 in 7 billion life
2018: She Mentors
I am in Melbourne, I have found a home here, I am back into Events Leadership, making friends, and getting out into Victoria and the rest of Australia.
So what's missing? Something I had never known was missing...
During my career in the Events world - from unpaid Intern in 2010 to National Leadership in 2019 - I had only ever reported to a woman for 3 months. Never had female role models at work, never mind those willing and happy to invest time and energy into my personal and professional development.
Life lesson - "you cannot be, what you cannot see"
And in October 2018 I saw for the very first time.
I found She Mentors on Meet Up, and went along to an event on Impostor Syndrome.
Not only did I meet a group of kind, encouraging, welcoming woman, but I realised they had all felt the doubt, the fear, the discrimination, that I had. AND they were all there to help each other overcome it!!!
I left feeling truly seen, supported, inspired for the first time ever in my career.
I joined the membership, and have had the absolute honour of mentoring, and being mentored by, the most amazing group of women on everything from confidence to accounting, and from styling to podcasting.
There's SO much more on She Mentors, mentoring and how it changed my life on this blog.
Life lesson - find your people, fiercely support them, and let them help you
2019: Redundancy One
I have my life set up in Melbourne, an amazing network of women in She Mentors, and really feeling settled in and at home.
Then in March 2019 - my role (suddenly, expectedly) became redundant.
The language is important here - no person is ever made redundant, I will never again utter the words ' I was made redundant', instead 'the role became redundant'.
I wrote a whole blog - in fact my very first blog - about the experience, which is here.
I was absolutely crushed. I could not say the word 'redundancy' without crying.
Thankfully Ali - who founded She Mentors - connected me with an incredible Coach.
And that experience truly changed my life.
There's so much more in my Redundancy & Resilience Blog, but here are the highlights:
Lessons from Redundancy:
It's not you - you are wonderful
Get help - it will be worth it
Some big things are unchanged - take comfort in these
After some soul searching, purpose finding, and work with my Coach, I realised that empowering and helping other women was my professional calling, and ICF Coaching was how I wanted to do so.
At the same time I was offered an incredible 18 month contract in the Events world, and intended to do the background work in getting certified and building the foundations of a business in that time.
But 2020 has other plans....
2020: Redundancy Two
Ah 2020, we all know how that went.
In the middle of the year I experienced my 2nd redundancy. This time my entire team's role as well as mine became redundant, as the major event we were working on was cancelled.
This time, thanks to work I had done the previous year, I was in a much better place and I could clearly picture my next step.
There's a whole blog about this experience too, the overall message being:
Life lesson - you are not rejected, you are redirected
So I jumped into my Coaching business full time, 5 months earlier than planned.
I talk about this in detail in my Redundancy Two Blog, and how I knew the time was now to take that brave action and have confidence in myself and my work.
I found the Courage to write my blog, launch my business, start my Podcast, share my experience of workplace sexism - yes there's a blog on that too, and start positively changing the world in the way I truly want to.
2021: Where To Now?
Now there's the big question!
I am here - via this blog, my Coaching, my Podcast - The Courage and Career Show, my Insta @varicoachescourage - to help women to take Courage: brave action with confidence and heart, and positively change the world with their work.
When I am asked to explain my life's work, my mission, I always use this quote from Untamed:
"My way of life is to dare to imagine,
the truest most beautiful life, family and world,
and to conjure the courage to make real what I have imagined."
So go out there and do just that - no apologies, no explanations.
Thank you for reading, it really does mean the world to me,