How I went from a stressful international career to train companies reducing stress and increasing performance with breathwork.
.... and helping hundreds of entrepreneurs feeling relaxed and and focused at work.
I've always been a hard worker. A trait I inherited from my family of dedicated gardeners. From a young age, I helped my family after school and during holidays in their business. That was normal. When I started studying, I kept working at my family’s business next to a second job to pay for my studies.
When I got my first real corporate job, all I could think of was working. Even when I wasn't physically at work, my mind was constantly racing with ideas and plans. I always was on. My days became full of activity, sandwiched between a vibrant social life and intense sports. I was always rushing from one thing to the next. I liked the taste of adrenaline, the feeling on moving on to what’s next.
But then, one day, everything changed. After a bike ride home from my parents' place, I felt an unusual tightness in my chest. I was worried and went to bed early. Not that I slept much. The next day, I sought medical help, and I was rushed to the hospital in an ambulance. In the blink of an eye, I found myself in the ICU, battling arrhythmia and dangerously high blood pressure. It took a week before I was discharged, with the stern advice to take things slow.
"Slow" and "patience" were not words that had ever been part of my vocabulary. I had always believed that "doing nothing" was for the lazy. Moreover, I had lost trust in my own body. It had betrayed me out of nowhere. I knew I had to rebuild that trust and learn to listen to my body's signals. But how? How could I recognize the early signs and red flags? I had always pushed myself, seeking more, going harder with an agenda full of appointments.
This was the turning point in my life. I needed to restart slowly, embracing simplicity but finding it far from easy. My impatience was often a problem. I was used to action, control and doing things. How to make a change?
In addition to my corporate job, I became yoga teacher to explore my connection with my body in a new way. I learned to slow down and being present, combining it with hiking and running in the mountains. I introduced more "Yin" into a life dominated by "Yang". Not only my body opened up, also my mind. Yoga connected me with the power of my breath: a subtle yet potent life force.
My ambition still burns bright, and I enjoy pursuing a thousand and one things at the same time. But the drive now comes from a different place, from within. I'm in alignment with myself, no longer needing to push through with brute force. I've become stronger, calmer, and more focused. My mind, once scattered and frantic, is now centered and clear. My business is thriving. I smile more, and my approach to life is open, replacing that old, inflexible tunnel vision. I have more time in my days, and it's a blissful change from always being in a rush.
Me and the cold weren't really good friends. Also not because I suffer from the syndrome of Raynaud (white hand and feet) and best advice is avoiding cold. But you can do more as you tell yourself, and with that mindset I started to do cold showers, Ice baths and became Wim Hof Instructor. In the cold there is only one focus: me in the present moment. Powerful.
If you are looking for me, I am outside. In nature I feel alive. Outside in connection with natures' energy. Mountains as my favorite place: for the views on top and the efforts to reach them.
Highlights: Hiking Kilimanjaro, Torres de Paine, Tour de Mont Blanc (2024), UTMB trail running Andorra, Costa Brava Trail (2024)
I have worked for > 25 years in international corporations making a successful career.
Thanks to the possibilities in my company, my curiosity and eagerness to learn I worked in different teams in many countries. I learned a lot about how to get things done in complex business environment and staying true to myself.