Simple. I’ve spent practically my entire 20-year career in transition.
The excitement, hard knocks, wins, and emotional rollercoaster? I’ve been through them all. So I really know what you’re going through.
Where it all started…
I started my career as a lawyer back in 2000 in one of the top Singapore law firms. And I disliked it, to put it mildly.
Frazzled by doing the work of two people, I was working 14-hour days, weekends and public holidays. At the same time, I was planning a wedding that almost didn’t happen. Not only that, I was bored stiff with the repetitive work I was doing. And eventually, I got so burnt out that my doctor put me on stress medication.
When our team was told we had to work even harder and not ask for more interesting work, a few of us knew we had to quit - and we did. But shortly after that, I met a friend while shopping for a mobile phone and my radical career change journey began.
The chance meeting that changed everything
My friend Vernon had been hired to start the technology practice at a WPP group public relations boutique firm. We chatted while browsing the latest Nokias and Motorolas (yes, it was that long ago). And to my surprise, he offered me the opportunity to join his team.
In the 20 years after that, my career moves followed the same pattern. I was hired through referrals, network contacts or through LinkedIn or an internet search. I was hired mostly without formal interviews, based on the strength of the referral or connection.
This led me to embark on wildly different pathways including:
Start-ups where I did branding, product development and e-commerce
Private Bank Partnerships
Forest genetics (imagine the “CSI” for timber)
Coaching start-up Founders, and senior executives.
Click here for a more formal bio >
For more than a decade, my radical career path puzzled most people, but I knew the universe had a plan although I didn’t have the words for it.
From Meandering to Midlife Crisis to Mindful Choice
In 2014, I finally nailed it: My ability to navigate and thrive in radical career changes is my “superpower”.
However, I had fallen into this by accident.
I’d made tactical, meandering career moves as they appeared in front of me. Each time, I hoped that it would be “the one”: job satisfaction, good pay, status. Or the promise of equity, fame and fortune (startup gigs). And there was a price to pay.
During those years, my husband and I failed to invest time in our relationship, personal development and meditation as we grappled with growing his business, my career detours, debilitating health challenges, and raising three kids under the age of 10. The stress started to take its toll on us and the intense frustration and resentment strained our marriage and led to a lack of purpose and, simply, feeling lost.
It was around the time that I did my EMBA. On hindsight, a clear sign of a mid-life crisis and an expensive one at that!
It was through this program that I discovered coaching, which combined my love for personal development, spirituality and mindfulness and my work life. I re-learnt how to become the more sophisticated version of myself.
That was a turning point for me. Becoming a coach was the first mindful choice in my 20 year career.
My mission as a coach was and is to bring the light back into people’s eyes. That is what I do every day, and for that I am so grateful. Nothing gives me more professional satisfaction and joy. It’s also been extraordinary how things fell into place when I made the decision to coach.
I went from “go with the flow” to “being in flow”!
Navigating high-altitude career changes
Since my turning point, I’ve condensed the biggest lessons from my “go with the flow” days and “in flow” mindful choices to coach senior executives through their mid-career crisis.
We also started high-altitude hiking - something that both scares (I’m terrified of heights!) and exhilarates me and my family.
I’ve found many parallels between high-altitude hiking and mid-career changes, so you’ll see and hear me use this analogy a lot. Especially in my online courses (WIP!).