Woman Wednesday: Andrea


Q and A with Andrea from Guatemala City



Compassion is the glue!”


Q: What are you passionate about? 

A: I struggled a lot in the first years of my practice as a clinical psychologist. Getting clients was super hard, taking into account that we didn’t have social media back then, so the referrals were 100% through word of mouth. I struggled to understand how to price my sessions and all the business side of the practice. Now, 25 years later, I’ve learned a thing or two about how to run a business and start your practice, especially for those in the mental health field. I’ve always been passionate about teaching and mentoring others, so we can all work together to help others heal while thriving ourselves. 

After working with a renowned clinical psychologist helping her to certify more than 600 coaches worldwide, I decided to help them get started, guiding them on how to set up their practice. I am also passionate about helping people collaborate with each other, contrary to competition, so we can all shine through our own uniqueness. This is why and how “The Helpers Tent” came to life. 

Now, I have my practice as a clinical psychologist and also work as the CEO of The Helpers Tent. It’s a space of collaboration and community between therapists, coaches, and all helpers in the mental health field.

Q: What were your younger years like?

A: I was born in a small country (Guatemala in Central America).  My family was pretty much conservative and pursuing higher education was the only expectation they had of my sisters and me. When I was very young, I spent all my lunch breaks drawing and painting, and I used to sell those to my classmates, so I think I was born with a business mind. I was also always the “mediator” between my friend’s conflicts and loved to read and learn about human biology, history, and evolution. I’ve always been just fascinated by human existence and interactions between one another. I am a seeker and an observer…a researcher.

My father is a doctor in economics and owns a company in the stock market field. He taught us how to fight for our dreams, and my mom supported each one of us in our own uniqueness. After graduating from high school, I went to college and started my minor in economics. I survived the first years, but then I discovered that my purpose was to become a psychologist and help others heal. So, I started my studies in clinical psychology…and boom! I was in my element. 

I started to feel authentic and that everything I was learning resonated because it was already within me.  Now, I combine my abilities and skills as a clinical psychologist with my innate and learned tools to make a business and The Helpers Tent come to life.

Q: What is something valuable you’d like others to know?

A: Learn to pay attention. Carefully and thoroughly. To yourself and to others. To open doors and opportunities. Once you pause and listen carefully, you can tap into your life’s North Star, which will lead you to your purpose and mission. Embrace your uniqueness; there is nobody like you or like me. Once we understand and embrace our uniqueness we start to collaborate, to feel safe, and instead of competing with each other and judging each other, we start to feel abundant in our interconnectedness. We are interdependent beings and in that interdependence, ABUNDANCE lies.

Q: What does feminism mean to you?
A:
Feminism involves a transformation of consciousness through the understanding of women’s history in the world so we can question and challenge our rights, roles, and position in society. Through this consciousness, we can embrace and understand the power of nurturing, caring, and our internal knowledge. We don’t need to enter the world wearing a masculine disguise, we need to honor and cultivate all those feminine energy assets that allow human beings to connect from love. This is why to me, feminism is not an ideology, it is a state of being. It is a conscious action that comes from awareness of how our struggles throughout history have allowed us to evolve and transform, to go from passiveness to activeness, to movement that can ultimately help us heal the world through compassion and radical actions from love.

MORE FROM ANDREA: The healing of our world will come from the integration of each human being. Integration of mind, body, and soul. Compassion is the glue! Once we are integrated, we can connect to each other as whole beings and love from abundance and not from needs and unfulfilled spaces that cause so much suffering in human relationships.

www.thehelperstent.com

IG: @thehelperstent

FB: The Helpers Tent Community

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/andrea-gonz%C3%A1lez-b338baa/

Thank you for reading!

Woman Wednesday: Mai Ka (MK)


Q and A with Mai Ka from Saint Paul, Minnesota



“Like a plant that’s meant to grow in the wilderness, one cannot be tamed if they’re meant to soar.”


Q: What are you passionate about? 

A: I am passionate about healing, inner success, and inner happiness. The passion I have for the work I do is mainly inspired by my own personal experience of 16 years of mental health issues. I learned a lot and realized a lot of things from those years. I am an artist and an entrepreneur. My current work involves life coaching on self-healing, photography, and spiritual healing.

I recently became a life coach after having healed from my most traumatic wounds and am inspired to help others make that powerful change in their life. Through my own experience, I learned that no one’s coming. If I don’t save myself, no one’s going to save me. I also learned that no matter how good we are at providing guidance and advice, if we don’t practice those ourselves and if we don’t take the chance to work on ourselves, it’s useless. The changes that we crave will never manifest themselves into our reality and we’ll never truly understand the hardships behind them. 

Photography for me was therapy at the beginning. It started as a way for me to capture and remember the purest, most peaceful, and happiest moments during the darkest time of my life. I love landscape photography and being out in nature, going to parks and trails. I wanted to capture these memories to remember. From there, it expanded into this passion for helping others embrace themselves and their presence. As for spiritual healing, it is a gift I am blessed with in this lifetime to be that of a vessel for both realms. I get to be of service to all life forms and be that of a healing guide. Aside from these current projects, I have a long-time project that I have been working on. It is a nonprofit organization that is currently in the development stage. The goal of the nonprofit is to nurture, empower, and educate orphans worldwide.

The 16 years of my mental health experience is the inspiration behind this nonprofit project. At the time, I realized that as an individual who grew up rich, with families, with friends, and with a home to go to yet still have to go through all this agony, then life must have been extremely indescribable and unimaginably challenging for those who grew up with little to nothing. By creating the nonprofit, I hope to be able to lead orphans down a more positive and less difficult path.

Q: What were your younger years like?

A: I grew up in a very traditional and conservative family. My family immigrated to the United States when I was six years old. Since then it felt like I was forced to grow up. On top of that, I am also the oldest of six siblings so there was this invisible pressure to be a good role model for them and for any younger ones within my extended family. Seeing how my family struggles internally and externally really inspired me to do what I do today. I may seem rebellious for creating a life that I would enjoy that’s different from the traditional ways of life, such as having a 9-5 job, or getting all sorts of degrees only to have a good-paying job. However, through all of my hardships, I am proud of myself because as a cycle breaker, I got to pave a new path for my younger siblings to walk on and I got to introduce everyone to limitless opportunities.

Q: What is something valuable you’d like others to know?

A: A valuable lesson I learned is to never forget who I am and where I came from. Our humble beginnings are not a burden, it is a blessing. It is a laborious but beautiful experience. It teaches us the true value of life and allows us to appreciate the burst of color there is to life. When we have little, we crave more, but when we have a lot, we have nothing. Life is simple and beautiful the way it is, but if we don’t appreciate it, we become lifeless.

Q: What does feminism mean to you?
A:
Feminism to me is connection. Through the vulnerability of women, it allows everyone to connect on a deep authentic soulful level.

MORE FROM MK: Another inspiration for my work is all of the people I met over the years, especially those who supported me. I believe in the ripple effect of paying it forward. Through my work, I hope that one day all the goodness I put forth will come back to let them know that the kindness, the effort, and the energy they spent on me didn’t go to waste. This is my way of thanking them.

Thank you for reading!

Website: everestmk.com

Facebook: 

Main profile: MK Biz (www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100087293029861&mibextid=ZbWKwL)

Photography: Only we know photography by MK (www.facebook.com/everestmky)

Shamanic Blog: Remember, MK (www.facebook.com/remembermk)

Nonprofit: Lenses & Perspectives (www.facebook.com/lensesperspectives)

Instagram: MK Biz (@maimai.itsmk)

Song: Behind Your Shadow – MK  (https://youtu.be/pgT4e6SXV0c)

Video: This is My Story (https://youtu.be/OaNBoR9Jrmc)

Woman Wednesday: Vanessa


Q and A with Vanessa from Barranquilla, Colombia



“As cliché as it might sound, you really should never give up. And if you keep trying the same things over and over, try something new, try a new technique, educate yourself, learn, grow, and you’ll achieve your dreams.”


Q: What are you passionate about? 

A: My number one passion is spending time with my nine-year-old son, which is what led me to Pinterest marketing. When I became a mom, I knew I wanted to stay at home with my son, so I decided to start my own business. I initially wanted to do copywriting, but I saw the high demand in Pinterest marketing and decided to focus on this. I never thought that I would LOVE doing Pinterest marketing so much! I’ve learned so much and met so many amazing business owners. I am currently working on creating my own Pinterest course to teach people how to use this amazing platform for their business.

Q: What were your younger years like?

A: I grew up with two older sisters and a single mother who moved to the U.S. from Colombia, South America. I watched my mother work multiple jobs while learning the English language in order to provide for us. She went from multiple jobs to finally getting one great position as a bilingual representative in a great company where she could finally make a decent income. My mother wanted me to attend college, but I couldn’t quite place my finger on what kind of job I wanted to study for. Eventually, I realized I was an entrepreneur at heart and that I didn’t want a job…I wanted my own business. I think my mother’s strength and resilience made a huge impact on me as a business owner.

Q: What is something valuable you’d like others to know?

A: One of the most important things I’ve learned is that you can’t succeed in business if your mindset isn’t right. You have to be confident in what you’re doing, set your fears aside, and see the value in yourself. The wrong mindset can hold you back in all aspects of life. Always make sure you love yourself and take care of yourself first, and then you’ll succeed in everything else.

Q: What does feminism mean to you?
A:
To me, feminism is more than just having equality and the same opportunities as men. It’s also feeling powerful inside your own skin, being confident in yourself, and loving yourself wholeheartedly.

MORE FROM VANESSA: When I first started my entrepreneurial journey, I failed repeatedly. I was clueless about marketing, I lacked confidence, and I really struggled. However, I never gave up. I started educating myself, got marketing coaching, took courses on all kinds of topics, and changed my life around. When I finally lauched my Pinterest marketing business, I succeeded and was making a full time income within three months. As cliché as it might sound, you really should never give up. And if you keep trying the same things over and over, try something new, try a new technique, educate yourself, learn, grow, and you’ll achieve your dreams.

Thank you for reading!

To connect with Vanessa on Facebook, click here.

Vanessa’s business page.

Woman Wednesday: Demetria


Q and A with Demetria from Mississippi, USA



“Celebrate all the small wins because they make up your big win!”


Q: What are you passionate about? 

A: I am really passionate about helping others. I have worked in many service-based industries, and one thing I’ve learned is that it’s really important to help someone out, no matter how small the task may be. Now that I work as a coach, I celebrate my clients’ successes with them, and it really feels like I’m making a transformation with them. This is a really good feeling. Outside of my work as a coach, I’m also really passionate about fashion, cooking, and photography. I find joy in creative things, and I’m able to incorporate a lot of my passions into my coaching practice because the majority of my clients are women. These women are working hard to build their careers and not lose out on time with their families or lose themselves in their careers. I have a workwear brand called Deme Latrece that I’ve incorporated into the Corporate Cheat Code program, where I offer affordable, high-quality work clothes so that women can bring their best selves to work every day.

Q: What were your younger years like?

A: I grew up in a large family that was very close-knit. This encouraged me to create my own large family with my husband. Growing up, I always wanted to be a fashion designer. However, when I went to college, I majored in broadcast journalism because I loved asking questions and getting to the bottom of things. I didn’t have much faith in my fashion design dreams because it wasn’t something that others in my city were doing at the time. I felt like I needed to be from a big city like New York or Los Angeles to be successful in fashion. I got pregnant with my son during the summer of my freshman year and moved back home. Over the years, I tried to go back to school several times, but I kept changing my major because I didn’t know what I really wanted to do. I got married and had three more kids. I then pursued a career in human resources. I climbed the ladder very fast and was able to get my associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s degree, and HR certifications. I am now working on my Ph.D. in I/O psychology.

After I finish my degree, I plan to do business coaching. I would like to go into organizations and partner with either HR depts of stressed CEOs and help them to solve their people issues using an evidence-based approach. HR people are much more transactional (we are trained to solve problems, but not to really diagnose the root cause), but as an I/O Psychologist, I would like to get to the root of why people are behaving how they are in the workplace as well as diagnose any issues within the leadership teams. I want them to be able to find meaningful ways to motivate their employees that are sustainable. I want more organizations to understand that people are what keep the engine going and if we can keep our people happy and truly understand them, our businesses can be much more successful. That will also increase the organizational commitment and employee satisfaction level! I don’t want to partner with huge Fortune 500/100 companies because my intent isn’t to just make a lot of money; I want to share value and help the organizations that could benefit most and that are more often overlooked. I will continue to incorporate my love of fashion into my entrepreneurial journey with Deme Latrece and my expertise in all things career through my coaching service with The Corporate Cheatcode. I am extremely proud of how far I have come in my career and education.

Q: What is something valuable you’d like others to know?

A: I would like other women to know that it is never too late to be what you were always meant to be. Your journey may be harder than others, but you shouldn’t look at what others are doing because your journey is just that: YOURS! And you WILL do all the amazing things you were meant to do. Whenever you are trying to change anything in your life, make sure that you put a strategy in place first and break your goals down into easily digestible pieces so it is more realistic for you to achieve. Celebrate all the small wins because they make up your big win!

Q: What does feminism mean to you?
A:
All genders should be afforded equal rights and opportunities. Women have the knowledge, experience, and skills to contribute to the workplace and the world in general. There is nothing we can’t do. I have made it my mission to especially help women who may feel that they no longer have a voice or that their voice can’t be heard as loudly because they have had to take breaks from work or perhaps don’t have the confidence to convey all they can contribute.

Thank you for reading!

www.demelatrece.com

www.thecorporatecheatcode.com

@DemeLatrece

@Thecorporatecheatcode

Woman Wednesday: Mary


Q and A with Mary from Manila, Philippines



“The world made me feel that I didn’t belong here, but it doesn’t mean that I should stop dreaming.”


Q: What are you passionate about? 

A: I am passionate about helping people, especially women who struggle with their emotions. Being born with cancer and growing up with it, I was exposed to different negative emotions, and that’s how I ended up studying psychology. Now, I am working as an internationally certified emotional and mindset coach, where I am helping people who struggle with constant burnout and emotional fatigue in their business and personal life using a proven system to create their ultimate breakthrough.

Q: What were your younger years like?

A: Well, I’m not like other kids, who had a normal life. Growing up with cancer since birth made me feel like I did not belong here on earth. It made me feel like a limited person. I felt awful in my younger mind. I remember I kept asking, “Why me?” As a child, living in pain made me feel like a limited child. Everyone around me was living normally and that made me feel like I did not belong. I spent most of my childhood in my bed or sometimes in the hospital. I was born with leukemia and spent my first three years in the hospital, trying to survive. The local government helped support my parents with all my medical needs and treatments since I was born. My parents were simple farmers. Since I came from a poor family, my parents could not support my needs, but they were determined to help me.

Since I was a kid, I really loved reading, especially about different countries, and their cultures and history. I have always loved learning new things and dreaming big. Despite constantly fighting with death, I kept dreaming. I remember when I was in grade school, one of my teachers asked me, “Why do you want to come to school every day?” and I remember I said, “I might die soon, so I want to go to school every day because I don’t want to die with my dreams.” I remember I used to dream about traveling around the globe. This has since happened in my adult life.

When I was a teenager, I loved to read fiction and self-discovery books. I was moved up a year in high school, which made me start college earlier than others my age. Then after high school, I told myself that cancer may start the fight, but I will not let cancer decide how to end my story. I see my pain as a motivation to live. The world made me feel that I didn’t belong here, but it doesn’t mean that I should stop dreaming. I remember that I told myself when I was 15, the pain that I had since birth, the struggles I had, and the fear of death that I had, are all the thoughts of someone who also secretly fights with life. I want to create a world for me and other cancer patients and make them realize that cancer might choose us, but we are not our cancer. It may create and change our story, but we are still the author of our own story, and we determine how to create the end part. Yes, we have cancer, and that made us stronger than we thought. And that mindset is still with me.

Q: What is something valuable you’d like others to know?

A: Your story can be your most powerful tool. Everyone has their own fight, whether chronic diseases or not, personal or not personal, all of us have our own fight. If I have a chance to help you, that would be to teach you how to win your fight and turn it into a breakthrough. I have won five times against cancer, and I know cancer can start the fight again, but definitely, I’m the one who’s gonna end the fight.

Q: What does feminism mean to you?
A:
For me, feminism means being equal. We used to think that feminism was being submissive or ruled by men. For me, feminism means you can do anything you want as long as you believe that you can do it. Feminism means empowering the world and influencing the world the way men do it. To create an impact in people’s lives the way men do it.

MORE ABOUT MARY: I am so grateful to meet different people from different places, and I am so grateful to be part of this amazing group where I have a chance to contribute my skills and expertise in terms of emotional stress. Like you, everyone gets stressed, and your emotions and feelings are valid, authentic, and REAL.

Thank you for reading!

Connect with Mary on Facebook here.

Mary’s Facebook Group