We went deep with this one...
It's impossible for me to talk about Motherhood without mentioning the not-so-glamorous truth about this remarkable transition. My experience with it was less than perfect, and I can only imagine how many women must have had an equally unpleasant experience.
Motherhood is a major transition for every woman, whether she birthed or adopted her child. Chitra shares useful tips about maintaining inner balance and emotional integrity through the chaos, exhaustion and emotional storm that comes after childbirth.
I love talking to inspiring professionals. This interview with Marielle Obels was truly enjoyable.
The thing that stayed with me the most was the duration of an average job search. It takes 6 months to a year for an experienced professional to find a job they truly love, in a company where they truly fit in.
That's a long time, but if you stay the course, and do not settle, the patience will pay off.
I remember the day I decided to study Coaching and realign myself with my childhood dream of becoming a psychologist.
Back in 2015, at the age of 33 and with a 3-year-old child, going back to university to study psychology full time for 4 years was practically impossible. So I chose the next best thing; Coaching.
I always knew I wanted to help people. But I wanted to do it right. Trying to help others had backfired many times in the past, and I wanted to learn how to do it effectively and responsibly.
So I searched for the best EMCC-accredited, English-spoken, online training. I reviewed all of them. I read their curricula and was shocked by the lack of substance and depth of the material covered. It seems you can get a coaching certificate in a weekend, for a hefty price.
I refused to believe that you can reach the level of mastery required to responsibly lead others to success within a weekend.
And then I found Coaching Evolution Int'l Academy. I read the curriculum, spoke to Pamela Caravas about the philosophy of her school and her vision about the future of the coaching profession, and decided that it was perfectly aligned to my own philosophy about life and my own professional integrity.
This course was everything I needed it to be; challenging, demanding, thorough, confronting, enriching, transformative.
This is not for the faint of heart, for those who seek a quick fix and an easy way out. This is hard work. It requires dedication and courage to confront your own shortcomings. Because, how will you guide others through the pain of change, if you haven't been through it yourself first?
So here's to me, a brave woman, who decided to reinvent herself and worked her butt off to proudly stand here today and say "I earned this and I am proud of myself".
A few years ago I made a mistake.
I had always been an inquisitive person, fascinated by evolution, growth, learning, expanding the limits of my mind, stretching my mental abilities to see how far I could go.
Then, around my late 20s, I got tired. I saw no good coming from my constant research and reading. So I stopped. I told myself “if you are not going to use all this knowledge, I won’t waste any more time on this stuff. Find something useful to do.”
What a word. It turns out everything I was doing was extremely useful to me and others, but I couldn’t see it, because I had never experienced what it’s like to not be this way.
This unquenchable curiosity was keeping my mind sharp, enriching my creativity, giving me new insights, propelling my thought forward. I could make connections easily, create successful strategies, come up with new ideas. It was giving me a competitive edge at my work as a marketer.
After I stopped, it took me 6 months to see the effects. I lost my edge. I lost my spark. I lost my curiosity. I lost my thirst. My mind became sluggish, slow, lazy, fearful. I saw others race past me with ease, as if I was standing still. I was still working hard, harder than before. But I wasn’t getting the same results.
Life is not a competition
I always believed that competing against others is a complete waste of time and resources. The only person we are ever in competition with is our past self. And my past self was now so far ahead of me I couldn’t even see her. I didn’t even feel like we were the same person. But the thing that hurt even more, was that I felt I had let down, not only myself, but everyone around me.
I don’t know many things, but this I know for certain; I cannot be happy when others are suffering. My calling is in helping others. The first step in helping others is in sharing the jewels in our heads. Our thoughts, ideas, opinions, realizations, experiences, truths, are jewels. They are valuable insights created out of observation, wisdom, analysis. They are the most valuable commodity.
Think, where would you be today if no one had ever written anything, if no one had ever shared their ideas, if there were no books, no knowledge? Where would we all be? Our creativity and our survival depends on communicating our own understanding of the world around us. This is our legacy.
We all have a part to play and we all have something to contribute. It doesn’t have to be big enough to change the world, but it might.
Have you ever looked at your life and thought "there must be a better way to live, a better way to be, a better way to function than what I am currently experiencing"? I had that moment a few months ago, a moment of introspection where I thought, this can't be the best way to live my one, precious life.
Life is not about being busy
We all have work to do, money to make, families to raise, loved ones to care for, and it's so easy to get lost in the madness of it all. In my moment of introspection I had this feeling that, on a macro level, life is all about Mastery. Like the levels of a video game. Once you master your current level, the ascension to the next level is effortless and instantaneous.
I have seen this happen to me time and time again, usually every 5-7 years. I can always feel it is time for a change or transition to a higher level, when things start feeling a bit off.
There is resistance, exhaustion, boredom, health ailments, or a feeling of something missing. We make a change willingly, or sometimes life brings on the change without warning, and there we are, swimming in unknown and rough seas once again.
We battle it out for a few years, and then slowly we get the hang of it. We start feeling a bit at ease with the new situation, we plan our needs around the new circumstances, we get used to our new habits, we settle into a new routine. And we are happy for a while.
And then, one day, we wake up and things are a bit off again. We start wondering, is this all there is? This moment, is the moment where you realize you have achieved mastery of your current circumstances. This is the sign that you are getting ready for something new. You evaluate what you have, you decide to shed some things, habits, routines, people, activities, so that the new can come in.
The fear of change
Many people see these signs as something negative, something to be fearful about. They try to ignore the uneasy feeling, suppress the bubbling emotions, or they just distract themselves hoping that it's "just a phase" and soon everything will get back to normal.
I've encountered people who create major dramas in their lives, or wish for one, when they start feeling this way. They wish something would happen that would force them to get busy fixing something else. This is perfectly normal. Evolution hasn't taken us that far from our basic instincts yet. Survival remains the most powerful motivator.
When we are in survival mode, we don't have time to notice the details, the periphery, things that are considered secondary. When you are fighting for survival you do not make long term plans. Life is simple when you are busy hustling. Not easy, but definitely simpler than having all your problems solved, and all the time in the world to ponder philosophical ideas and concepts.
When we finally chill out, this is when the issues start coming up. Busy people don't have time for dramas.
So what is the solution?
The solution is that we need both in our lives; hard work AND time to reflect and make long term plans.
When you only work hard, you enter the Tunnel. Tunnel-vision doesn't let you see opportunities and threats, but it is great when you need to make progress fast. Once you reach your milestone, however, you need to emerge, reflect, rest, process your experience, look far and make a new plan for your next laser-focused phase.
This cycle of creativity is well documented, and it has been integrated in nearly every project management and project planning methodology. Thanks to my experience as a project manager and coach, I use a wide variety of tools to help professionals at any stage of their career organize their goals in a way that supports their growth and well-being.
If you want to find out more, go ahead and schedule a free intake session with me.