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Motivation through connection

My story is one of overcoming.

I grew up in a dysfunctional family. It created many challenges. My mother was bright, yet a procrastinator. My stepfather was a child abuse survivor with deep, unprocessed scars.

Even before my teens, my parents would confide in me. I would listen to their troubles and offer advice. I lost a lot of my childhood by focusing on them.

I tried many times to hold the dysfunction at bay long enough to avoid it spilling over onto my siblings and me. Of course, it did and frequently. Physical and psychological safety could be achieved through avoidance, detecting subtle changes in our environment, observing behaviours, and helping them to navigate daily life. 'Overwhelm' occurred regularly.

Life back then was very chaotic and uncertain. My parents' choices led to a feeling we had differences in core values. With a deep sense not belonging, I left home.​

In my early 20s, I had tremendous life challenges. I struggled with both my physical and mental health. When you met me, you had no idea what I was facing. I am skilled at hiding my trauma. There is nothing to see here. Inside, I was feeling lost. I was ill-equipped to deal with my situation. Yet, I survived.

To me, it was incomprehensible how I could turn my situation around.

At a low point, a friend took pity on me. He invited me for a run to get me out of the house. I had been smoking heavily for years and was overweight. I was unhappy. He could tell I was a mess. Yet, he appreciated company on his run.


That day changed me forever. 

Even today, I remember running up that hill with him. Twenty meters ahead of me. He was talking to his friend on his mobile phone while jogging! I struggled. I tasted metal in my mouth. My lungs burned. I wanted to cry. I stopped to catch my breath frequently. He kept talking. Somehow this run reflected the mess I was in. I hated myself. 

At the same time, something changed inside me. I said to myself, I am not taking this anymore.

Thankfully, my friend tolerated my coughing and spluttering. I eventually made new running friends. I found a tribe that accepted me. I kept turning up. As the months passed, I smoked less and lost weight. I felt my overall well-being increase.

Running started to become a vehicle for change. As I grew stronger in body and mind, I became the best runner in our group. I experienced my first-ever boost in confidence. Instead of just being delighted with this result, I knew I could go much further. I kept pushing, 10km, 13 miles, marathon. Completing challenges wasn't enough. I wanted better times. I wanted better 'splits'.  Deep down I knew I was growing. Every mile was one more step towards finding me. The Alex I had never met before. I knew he was in there somewhere. I continued my pursuits by going to the Himalayas, overcoming a back injury to race middle distance, competing for my age group, and more. 

Eventually, I developed enough confidence to heal the wound of not finishing my education. I embarked on a crazy plan to work full-time and do my degree full-time in 3 years. I did and then went on to do a Master's Degree, which I completed with Distinction.

Eventually, I started to become content, positive, committed and determined. I began to realise these qualities were always within me. My transformation helped me build a successful career journey.

My push for self-improvement led me to coach individuals and teams. I have always been able to comprehend my colleague's setbacks and failures at the workplace. The more I analysed my peer's and colleagues' attitudes towards work; the most significant revelation was the lack of awareness of their potential and how little they focused on their ‘well-being’. This is solely the root cause for shoogle.

Regardless of their size, good organisations strive to keep their employees happy and productive, yet many do not succeed. Why do organisations fail?

Motivation through connection. Organisations need to create safe relationships, acceptance, and belonging to achieve high performance.

I bring with me not only 13 years of coaching and mentoring experience, but I also turn up with a razor-sharp awareness of safety, a deep sense of what it feels like not to belong, and have been highly successful in creating teams that ARE safe, are accepted for who they are and we do this with laughter and joy in our hearts. In every successful commission, our clients have benefitted not only from hugely motivated teams, unrivalled commitment, never before seen achievements, but the bottom line isn't too shabby either.

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