In the February Issue:
It was 2014, I was 57 and getting sucked up by a relationship that was turning me into a pale shadow of who I once was. I chose ME, and left that relationship despite knowing I would lose absolutely everything in the process. I knew I had two choices: behave as a victim (blaming him and circumstances for what had happened to me) or step up and see this as a fantastic opportunity to reconsider all my choices in life and business. I chose the latter. I spent a big part of that year soul searching and looking at what was working in my life, what wasn't, and what I wanted instead.
Two major decisions came out of that. The first one was to no longer work as an Executive Coach for corporations, but instead help women entrepreneurs become emotionally and financially free. The second decision was to leave France, where I had never felt at home despite having lived there most of my life. As a result, I arrived in London on July 21, 2015, aged 58, with just two suitcases, no income, no savings, eight weeks of house sitting, and the firm intention to rise from my ashes.
That decision changed my life for the better. I had chosen to reinvent myself by stepping into the driver's seat of my life, and I did so successfully. I now help women who are ready to dream bigger, and dare more, do the same.
The whole experience has been an incredible journey of growth. So much so that I'm grateful for that toxic relationship, because I wouldn't be who I am today without it. I'm often asked how I went about it. There are many things I could say, but if I had to pick three, at a high level, I would say:
Have a clear vision
Not having a vision is like leaving home for a long journey but forgetting to put an address in your GPS…You could land anywhere!!! A vision is essential because it is your compass and anchor. It is what will help you get on track again when you have moments of doubt, as we all do. I have an extensive process to help my clients unearth their vision, but an excellent starting point is to have a detailed look at what works, what doesn't, and what's missing in your life. From there, ask yourself what you would want it to look like if you had a magic wand, and that absolutely nothing would stand in the way. Make sure to involve all your senses when describing it.
Abundance versus scarcity
You can't create abundance from a place of scarcity. The key is to be grateful for what you already have. There is always something to be thankful for, even when it doesn't look like there is. Just stop focusing on what doesn't work! When I arrived in London with my two suitcases, I never felt poor because I was (and still am) able to focus on what was working in my life. Set up a daily practice of gratitude, and make sure to really feel the gratitude when you do it.
Leverage fear as a fuel
My very simple definition of fear is: "Fear is the anticipation of something that may happen, but that probably won't". Whether we like it or not, we will experience fear until our last breath. The key is to identify when it's there and deconstruct it. Are you procrastinating or being a perfectionist? These are two examples of fear at work. Ask yourself what's the worst thing that could happen. Once identified, ask yourself if you can be sure it will happen (hint: the answer is no, because it hasn't happened yet). That will help you realise that it isn't a fact but something of your own creation. From there, deconstruct it by searching for counter proof.
And to add to the above, just know that it is never too late (nor too early) to step into the driver's seat of your life to reinvent it. If I did it, you can do it too!
A.k.a The Reinvention Mentor, AnYes van Rhijn works with successful women in midlife who want to give more meaning to their life. She helps them design and manifest their ideal personal and professional life. As a result of working with her, they now have the sense of purpose they were craving, allowing them to live a happy and impactful life.