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Ange de Lumiere On The Self-Care Routines & Practices Of Busy Entrepreneurs and Business Leaders

Uncategorized Jun 05, 2023

An Interview With Maria Angelova

Self care helps us put things in perspective. Taking a break from the hum drum of life to do something for ourselves, helps us to pull away from problems and find a quiet place or a happy place in ourselves. It’s a pattern interrupt for the part of our mind that can’t see the wood for the trees. I think that’s why breaks and holidays are so important. It doesn’t mean we should put up with miserable lives in between those holidays, but they surely help recharge and come back with a new pair of eyes.

All of us know that we have to take breaks in our day to take care of ourselves. “Selfcare is healthcare”, the saying goes. At the same time, we know that when you are a busy leader with enormous responsibility on your shoulders, it’s so easy to prioritize the urgent demands of work over the important requirements of self-care. How do busy entrepreneurs and leaders create space to properly take care of themselves? What are the self-care routines of successful entrepreneurs and business leaders? In this interview series, we are talking to busy and successful entrepreneurs, business leaders, and civic leaders who can discuss their self-care practices and self-care routines. As a part of this series, I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Ange de Lumiere.

Ange de Lumiere helps ambitious entrepreneurs leverage their intuition to make smart decisions in their business, so that they can earn more money without working harder and create success on their terms. After a thriving fifteen year career as an international business lawyer, Ange branched out to study what she calls her PhD in intuition from the University of Life. She now brings all that she learnt from the spiritual world back into the business world, to enhance it.

Thank you so much for doing this with us! It is an honor. Our readers would love to learn more about your personal background. Can you please share with our readers your personal backstory; What has brought you to this point in your life

Istarted my career as a junior lawyer in the Paris branch of one of the five magic circle law firms. For two years, it was like boot camp. The work load was ridiculous as were the hours, but that was the way things were done, so no one questioned. I then joined the small subsidiary of a national Telecom operator that was in charge of all international operations. I worked just as hard as I did in the law firm because my job involved taking part in due diligences around the world as well as the drafting and negotiating big deals. It was fun and exciting and I loved the traveling part of things.

Even back then, I knew that self care was important and for me it looked like going to yoga, getting massages and taking micro-breaks during my busy day to still my mind.

After becoming a mother, I nearly lost my baby to premature labour at twenty seven weeks, so I asked my boss to create a role for me as knowledge manager, to get away from the treadmill of client work, which he happily did. When I got pregnant with my second child, I had a burn out episode that had me off work for six months. I was getting bored though, so I jumped on the opportunity to move from Paris to London when my boss was promoted at the head of legal of Orange, which had been launched on the stock market six months before. This sadly coincided with me becoming a single mother of two kids under six. Fast forward a couple of years and my elder son was diagnosed with autism. Self care was no longer a luxury, it became a survival tool. I left the corporate world after becoming pregnant with my third child and trained as a clinical hypnotherapist which not only helped me to understand how the mind works but also gifted me with several light bulb moments

What is your “why” behind what you do? What fuels you?

I am passionate about what I do because I am offering services to lawyers to prevent burn out but also to give them the soul food so they don’t feel they need to leave their brilliant careers in order to have a life. If I had someone like that to guide me, I would have never left the legal professional. I had come to a crossroad where I was either going to continue with a job that only satisfied my intellect, or branch out into the big wild world and einvent myself. I did the latter but it was a long harduous fifteen years that involved a lot of financial insecurity. I am also passionate about teaching intuition to as many professionals as I can because intuition literally saved my life during a bomb attempt in Paris in 1986.

How do you define success? Can you please explain what you mean from a personal anecdote?

Success is feeling satisfied and doing what you love in integrity. My fifteen year career as a lawyer was success on someone else’s terms. Most lawyers would have paid to have the fifteen year thriving career that I had, but it was at the cost of how I showed up as a mother to my children and my own health. Every day of single motherhood, after I moved to the UK, meant that I was not there for my kids for their school plays, didn’t have time to take them to activities and was stressed all the time. I wanted a career that allowed me to be both the incredibly talented lawyer that I was and the loving mother I wanted to be. And the corporate world didn’t have space for that.

I now have a business where I work around the constraints of my children, with clients who understand motherhood and respect my boundaries. I decide the hours that I work without having to work a poorly paid part time job for someone else.

What is the role of a growth mindset in your success? Can you please share 3 mindset mantras that keep you motivated, sane, and propel you forward?

I am constantly learning and growing, which I believe is key to becoming successful as an entrepreneur. I have faced what many people would call failures such as securing an agent for my first book but then sabotaging my book deal because I could not write a second edition to the self published book that the publisher was interested in. The biggest growth I have had to experience though was visiblility as I had to face the camera to share pictures and videos of myself to succeed in the online world. And at the start of that journey, my body image was so bad I had hidden all the mirrors in my house. But my passion got me through it because I believed in the need for my work to be out there.

My three mantras are: Everything always works out for me, failures are opportunity to learn, and done is better than perfect. That last one is work in progress as I am a perfectionist.

You are by all accounts a very successful person. How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world?

I still struggle to see myself as successful because I am a perfectionist and I tend to focus on what I haven’t done rather than what I have achieved. I used to offer my services at really low rates to enable everyone to work with me. This model did not work well and lead to burn out. I now operate on a business model where I give a lot for free and at the same time, charge my worth. I always go the extra mile for people. I believe I have helped hundreds of people through my free five day challenges. In fact, a lady who did my book challenge (when I was a book coach) credits it for helping her finish and publish her book. My focus is now on making the world a fairer place and I am actively allying for marginalised groups. This is happening through me launching a brand new series on my podcast about inclusion and diversity. The first episode went live on the 10th of October 2022. This is very exciting for me.

Can you share a mistake or failure which you now appreciate, and which has taught you a valuable lesson?

Sabotaging my book deal. I lived with the shame of it for years. I can now see that it helped me finally embrace entrepreneurship. Before that, I still had an employee mindset.

I was able to unpick this mistake when I came across Gay Hendricks’ book, the Big Leap. I suddenly understood what I had done my entire life, which is sabotaging my success when it came too close. I had this internalised belief that I should not do better than my parents and so everytime I reached new levels of success, my private life would take a hit so that I wouldn’t feel too good about myself. I am so grateful to Gay for his ground breaking work and consider myself lucly to have had the privilege of interviewing him on my podcast.

You are a successful leader. Which three character traits do you think were most instrumental to your success? Can you please share a story or example for each?

I want to be transparent here. I am still a solopreneur at this stage of my life because I had to make the important decision to home educate my children until September this year (2022). So for the past seven years, my business has been build on working only one day a week. This hasn’t stopped me writing two books, launching two podcast (the second one reaching the top 5% global rankings when it was launched) and working with incredible VIPs.

Consistency: As a business owner you have to show up consistently even if you don’t feel like it. It’s not differnet than in a job except you have no boss to encourage or motivate you. I smile when I look back at my early days in entrepreneurship and how I would post an offer once on my profile and if people didn’t buy, I would conclude that the offer was not wanted or needed. And maybe that was the case, but posting once doesn’t cut it when you have your own business. You have to be willing to repeat yourself constantly to the point you feel you are bound to bore people. Actually I still have people say “Oh I didn’t know you were a lawyer before” after I feel like I have shared this fact about myself a million times.

Resilience: Everybody has had failures in business. I used to think that I would be smart enough to avoid them, and I was wrong. Failure is apparently a badge of honour in the entrepreneurial world. The art of succesful failure is in dustingyourself off, learning the lessons and getting back on your feet again. I am incredibly resilient even though I am also sensitive above average. I think my biggest story of resilience is how I wrote my business book, the Intuitive Revolution in Business, despite it being incredibly difficult due to the failure of the kickstarter campaign for the memoir I wrote about my father four years before. It was really hard to shake the “I don’t know how to launch books” belief that was ingrained in me, but I did it anyway and I am very proud of it.

Creativity: I find solutions before I know there to be a problem for them. That’s how creative I am. I was an atypical lawyer because I never tried to stop my clients from doing things, unless illegal of course. I always tried to find a way to make things work and the operational people loved me for it. In fact, they often asked my boss to put me on their projects for that reason. I now see this as a byproduct of my intuition, but back then I didn’t know that it was intuition. I remember once seeing the image of an old fashion wood wheel with spokes. I wondered why only to find a book on hub marketing with that exact image on its cover. My intuiton had shown me that image so that I would pay attention when the book came to my awareness.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting new projects you are working on now? How do you think that might help people?

I am working on products for lawyers that are really exciting me at the moment. I have just opened a community on Facebook called Spirituality for lawyers. It speaks to the younger brilliant lawyer that I was, who wanted to be able to integrate spirituality into her work and find a meaning for it, without having to leave the legal world. This would have been invaluable for me as an individual within the corporate world. And had I had this kind of support all those years back, the corporate world would not have lost a very good lawyer.

The other very exciting project I am working on is to create a masterclass on how to attract and keep clients with the power of intuition. I know that intuition can be used for everything but I am quite excited to promote that masterclass because client attraction is something that matters tremendously for law firms and any competitive advantage you can get to attract the right clients is bound to be needed by law firm partners. The competition is fierce in the legal field, especially in the commercial field of law. This would help people not just to attract more clients to their firm with less effort. It would ensure they attract the right clients. And in my experience the clients that we need are not always the clients we think we need.

OK, thank you for all of that. Let’s now shift to the core focus of our interview about Self-Care. Let’s start with a basic definition so that we are all on the same page. What does self-care mean to you?

Self care is much more than getting a massage or a pedicure. It’s about setting boundaries and be willing to be impopular by saying no. That is something that has been particularly difficult for me because as a middle child, I want everyone to be happy. Middle children are often the negotiators in the family. And they tend to forget about their own needs. I also like the definition of self care in the oxford dictionary: “the practice of taking an active role in protecting one’s own well-being and happiness, in particular during periods of stress.” Active is a key word here. We are the only people who can be held accountable for our own wellbeing and happiness. If we depend on circumstances or other people to be happy, or even worse to know what our limits are, then we are in for a rough ride.

As a successful leader with an intense schedule, what do you do to prioritize self-care, and carve out regular time to make self-care part of your routine?

I used to wake up every day at 5 am to do my self care. I would do some yoga first, then have a glass of lemon water. Make a smoothie for breakfast, then meditate for ten minutes. I would finish off with some journalling, then plan the three top action steps to progress my business that day.

This served me well for years. This year, however, sleep became more important for me. So I started using the above more as a menu rather than a regime, and my routine is more fluid. I think this freedom is possible because the routine has been established so there is a framework I can work within.

Will you please share with our readers 3 of your daily, or frequent self-care habits?

My top self care habit is to have a green smoothie every morning for breakfast. I am going to share the ingredients with you but I am aware that one person’s potion can be someone’s poison, as our bodies are unique so adapt it to your own needs. Mine contains banana, melon, spinach, fresh coriander, fresh coconut milk, a teaspoon of peanut butter, flaxseeds and spirulina. It’s a self care practice because I know that this smoothie is packed with nutrients and it sets me up for a great start of the day.

The second self care habit I want to mention here is journalling. I try to journal every day. It helps me to put my thoughts on paper and gain insights. Sometimes I use journalling to vent emotions that I need to process. I used to suppress these emotions but that’s not good, because when you do that, you get to keep them. Emotions disperse if you feel them the way you are supposed to. It’s uncomfortable but it’s the only way.

My third self care habit is to indulge into something that will lift my spirits at least once a day. It can be learning about something new, watching a funny movie with my kids, doing something creative, dancing to a very groovy song, doing a bit of gardening (something that I am not particularly good at but it makes me feet great) or watching a video from my spiritual teacher, Esther Hicks.

This is the main question of our interview. Based on your own experiences or research can you please share 5 ways that taking time for self-care will improve our lives?

Self care helps rejuvenate us. The times in my life where I have fallen out of the habit of drinking my green smoothie for breakfast, for example, have found me with less energy. This happened earlier this year when I went through a difficult period in my private life. It’s only when I started having my green smoothie for breakfast again that I realised how less vibrant I was feeling myself and my body when I didn’t. Sometimes you have to stop doing something to realise the value of it. Life brings us regular challenges and replenish our cup, with a smoothie or otherwise, makes a real difference on how to face those challenges.

Self care helps us put things in perspective. Taking a break from the hum drum of life to do something for ourselves, helps us to pull away from problems and find a quiet place or a happy place in ourselves. It’s a pattern interrupt for the part of our mind that can’t see the wood for the trees. I think that’s why breaks and holidays are so important. It doesn’t mean we should put up with miserable lives in between those holidays, but they surely help recharge and come back with a new pair of eyes.

Self care helps reduce stress. It’s those intentional moments when we put ourselves first. It’s so easy to just keep going out of habit or because we are asked to do things. I used to always say yes to the demands of others, but it led me to be exhausted because I was constantly doing things and never had any down time in the day and even on weekends. The practice of saying no to demands is not something people associate necessarily with self care, but it actually is.

Self care helps lower negative emotions. We have to be realistic. Life brings both happy times and difficult ones. However, self care helps us have more helpful thoughts about the challenges. Without self care, we would tend to see everything in a negative light. When we are tired, we can tend to see things in a darker light. So self care is here to help us cope better with curve balls. It makes us a little stronger to face life.

Sometimes we learn a great deal from the opposite, from a contrast. Can you please share a few ways that NOT taking time for self-care can harm our lives?

Neglecting self care equals not looking after your own needs and putting yourself last. This can make us feel good because people are pleased with us, be it our bosses, our significant others or our friends. But what it does, in the long run, is erode your sense of self . It’s like pouring water into a cup with a hole. You can never quite fill it to the top. The insiduous thing is that you won’t notice that it is happening because we are so used to live on adrenaline. So you will do one more thing. And then another. Your body will probably try to warn you by first getting a cold. And maybe next your body will create an illness that is not too serious but annoying. But if you continue to ignore the signs, one day, you will hit a wall. These crisis points, often experienced in midlife help us to look at what is working and not working. And I will say, I went through that cycle quite a few times in my youth. Instead of being grateful to my body from helping me to take a rest, I resented it and tried to silence it with painkillers or antibiotics. Mostly, the lack of self care is most likely to impact your health. But it could also impact your relationships because you will be more irritable. Given enough time, you could also end up making really bad decisions too.

What would you tell someone who says they do not have time or finances to support a regular wellness routine?

I would share the Zen proverb that says: if you do not have time to meditate one hour, meditate for two hours. Self care is not something that we have been taught to prioritise. So the first step is to make it a priority. Sadly, that usually only happens when you face a crisis. The other thing I want to say is that self care does not need to cost anything. It can be a walk. Walking is free. People tend to think of self care as massage, for example or a reflexology treatment. It is so much more. Everyone had five minutes a day to do something for themselves. Try colouring for five minutes a day. Or cook. Then not only will you spend time in self care but you get to eat something lovely at the end.

We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we both tag them :-)

It would be Steve Jobs, so if you find a way to tag him, let me know. I will want to know your secret.

What is the best way for our readers to continue to follow your work online?

I would recommend you listen to my podcast called the Intuitive Revolution in Business.

This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for the time you spent on this. We wish you only continued success.

About The Interviewer: Maria Angelova, MBA is a disruptor, author, motivational speaker, body-mind expert, Pilates teacher, and founder and CEO of Rebellious Intl. As a disruptor, Maria is on a mission to change the face of the wellness industry by shifting the self-care mindset for consumers and providers alike. As a mind-body coach, Maria’s superpower is alignment which helps clients create a strong body and a calm mind so they can live a life of freedom, happiness, and fulfillment. Prior to founding Rebellious Intl, Maria was a Finance Director and a professional with 17+ years of progressive corporate experience in the Telecommunications, Finance, and Insurance industries. Born in Bulgaria, Maria moved to the United States in 1992. She graduated summa cum laude from both Georgia State University (MBA, Finance) and the University of Georgia (BBA, Finance). Maria’s favorite job is being a mom. Maria enjoys learning, coaching, creating authentic connections, working out, Latin dancing, traveling, and spending time with her tribe. To contact Maria, email her at [email protected]. To schedule a free consultation, click here.

Source : https://medium.com/authority-magazine/ange-de-lumiere-on-the-self-care-routines-practices-of-busy-entrepreneurs-and-business-leaders-cba729083e63


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