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How I got here (the full story)

By August 19, 2014 Blog No Comments
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Let me take you back a bit…

As a little girl I loved to draw, chair the meetings of my dolls and serve good food to people. Later, at High School, I wanted to change the world. How exactly I didn’t yet know.

Putting myself in other people’s shoes comes naturally to me. I sort of sense what motivates others. That’s a big strength, I realize now, but it used to make it hard for me to find out what was really important to me. Combining that with a strong urge to be liked, made me adapt to the people around me and look for approval. I didn’t realize yet that authenticitymakes people soooo much more fun!

After attaining my masters degree in Dutch Modern Literature (yes, really!) I started my career at the Intermin Foundation. Intermin challenges young managers to get the most out of themselves by sending them on very exciting, jump-in-the-water-and-see-if-you-can-swim assignments in Dutch governmental organizations. Writing it down like this actually makes it sound a bit like 007, and I did sometimes feel like that doing my various jobs. Also, it sometimes felt boring, scary and strange.

Working for this foundation, Intermin, was utter perfection for me. During my solid 8 years there, I went through a huge personal growth. When I started out as a manager, I used to hide a lot of my personality behind a solid, brick wall of not really genuine self-confidence.

I didn’t really notice it myself, but now that I can look back on this period, I see I was quite uncertain about my talents and abilities. I thought that, if I just looked confident, people would accept me as their leader.

Well, that turned out not to be entirely true! Even though I wasn’t bad at what I was doing, I often failed to really connect with the people I worked with. And that’s pretty bad for someone who has empathy as one of her core strengths!

When I started to approach leading people differently and became more open, curious and very honest about who I really am, in short: when I learned how to be authentic in my leadership, I was much more effective as a manager. I got much appreciation as well, both from the people in my teams as the people I worked for (like ministers ;)).

After my time at Intermin I knew I didn’t want to continue a profession in governement management. Even though I was quite happy at my job and I got to use my talents a lot, I felt I had to shift my focus to doing what really contributes to my personal mission:

To Grow, Be and Empower.

I spend a lot of time growing and being, and I feel it is high time to focus on empowering others to be all they can be.
That’s why I have put together the 150+ hours of coaching, dozens of leadership, coaching and communication courses and almost a decade of management experience into my business and this website to help tap into your personal power and develop the skills you need to be all you can be.

When I’m not working

I love to spend time with my family, my great husband & our fantastic kids (age 6 & 4). We currently live in Amsterdam.
I’m a foodie, always finding better things to feed my body with. And – as my husband puts it- I’m a Maker, since I started making my own cosmetics.
I like to make time to work out: running & Kundalini yoga help keep me grounded, focused and flexible.

About this site

Expect the content on this site to be inspiring, entertaining, real and powerful, giving you the tools to Grow, Be and Empower.
Whenever I come across something brilliant or offer a new product, my newsletter subscribers are the first to now, so make sure you’re on the list!

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