WOMAN OF PASSION: Breathing life into empty souls

By: JOAN THATIAH

Pauline’s passion wasn’t a persistent dream that she’d had since she was a little girl. Neither was it something out of a light bulb moment.

It has taken her years to reach what she now calls home. In fact, when she decided to walk out of an exciting career as a flight attendant six years ago, her human resources manager asked her where she was going but she didn’t have an answer for him.

“I had it all: a wonderful husband, three amazing children, a well-paying job and I had just graduated with a degree in international business. But that nagging feeling that I had been having for years was still there.

The longer I stayed on the job, the emptier I felt,” she recalls.

MISLEADING APPEARANCES

She had done everything that the world around her had expected to do and in the required order. It all looked good on the outside but she felt a huge dissonance within her. She didn’t know who she was.

When she quit her job one morning in October 2009 she didn’t know what she wanted to do with herself.

She planned to just sit at home and rest for a while but she couldn’t, she was used to a busier lifestyle. She sat at home for just three months and then set up a perfumes and African wear shop which was easy.

Being well-travelled, she knew where to get the best stock and the best way to get it into the country.

“I had no experience in business but this one did well. I wasn’t emotionally invested, though. It was like I was running it on autopilot.

My parents who thought I was just going through a phase were still waiting for me to get another job and they kept dropping hints.”

Two years into her business, she still felt empty. This business wasn’t for her. She needed to create her own path.

There was some place else that she needed to be. In a bid to find were this place might be, she would spend hours surfing on the Internet. This was how she came across essays on personal development.

She liked the fact that they seemed to explain the world in a way that she understood.

They said that accomplishment is being yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you someone else and she resonated with that message. Thinking they would get her home, she started taking online courses on personal development.

Then she got pregnant with her fourth child.

“If you can’t find yourself, the universe gives you pain. Sometimes it’s the only way we start to look within. Mine came in the form of a very stressful period where I felt lost and almost got depressed. I refused to leave my bed for weeks.

I started looking for answers within myself and got a life coach.”

After having her baby, a friend introduced her to multilevel marketing. While she loved making the sales, training people was more fulfilling. She had found herself. Her passion was coaching. She knew she wanted to be a speaker. After another year of online courses, she started doing life coaching.

“I like to think of it as transformational coaching. In retrospect, I had been doing it for years. Friends would come to me with their issues and I would talk them through.”

She partnered with her life coach Jeff Nthiwa to create Destiny Life Coaching. She reckons that there are three important days in a human’s life, the day they are born, the day they discover what they were born to do and the day they start living in their purpose.

Having travelled the path herself, every day at work is a chance to help others break out.

As a transformational coach, she stirs people’s souls to help them come alive. She does personal life coaching, speaks to groups, companies and young people.

Apart from Kenya, she has been invited to speak in five other African countries. The best part is that she gets to be a present mother for her children, something she was never able to do when she was employed.

“I believe that happiness comes from within not without. We just need to stop climbing the society’s ladders and pay attention to the voices within us.”

HOW SHE DID IT:

She doesn’t believe in failure. She believes that each miss is just one more way that will not give you the results you want.

She refused to let a good pay cheque keep her in a place where she felt unhappy.

She made sure that she learnt all that she could about her trade before setting shop. Knowledge gave her confidence which is essential in any business.