Hi, I am Marc de Bruin and here is my story . . .
For the first part of my working life, I found myself entrenched in an intellectually stimulating and financially comfortable job as a Lawyer, specializing in Real Estate and Criminal Law, with a high profile, medium sized firm in the Netherlands. I wanted to study Law and become a “lawyer” from when I was 8 years old, so it seemed I was on track to fulfil my life’s ambition and passion!
I encountered a major problem: after 6 years, I realised I wasn’t enjoying what I was doing anymore.
Even though I was quite good at my work, the money was good and the work was intellectually challenging, on Monday morning I looked forward to Friday evening and on Sunday evening I dreaded Monday morning.
I thought I got it ‘right’ – I was working hard, striving, achieving, sacrificing, over-committing, specialising, progressing, battling and surviving. It just did not feel right anymore.
One day after returning from holiday, staring at 2 huge piles of “backlogged” files next to my desk, a massive wave of anxiety hit me and I felt physically ill. The realisation hit me – I have to change; I cannot keep doing this.
The big issue was: I didn’t know what to do. I did not have an alternative strategy; I’d never learned one -or needed it, for that matter. For the next 3 months I tumbled headlong into deep downward spiral that completely threw me. I knew I was going to quit and had NO clue what I was going to do with my life from that point. I couldn’t see any future. The only thing I felt: what I am doing now isn’t it!
So, after a dreadful couple of months, wracking my brain about “what to do; what to do?”, I resigned in August 1999, with a 4-month notice period to hand over my practice.
This decision felt good in itself, and I knew right away I had made the right choice, even though “what’s next” was totally out of my field of vision and totally scared the living daylights out of me. I was 30 years’ old, at the time.
From late 1999 on, a synchronistic series of events unfolded that put me on the path I have been on since. I worked out that I had a number of key values, factors that were really important to me in life: travelling, preferably around the world; continually acquiring new knowledge and skills; working in a field that I can practice anywhere in the world; working with, and helping people; and having fun. And I decided to have these values guide my decisions from that point forward.
I was offered some part-time legal work by a former client, and I moved to South Africa for 6 months with my family (our daughter Kyara was not even 2 weeks’ old when she travelled there!) to study Body Stress Release (www.bodystressrelease.com.au). After returning to the Netherlands, I steadily built my own Body Stress Release practice, while doing some more part-time legal work for my former client.
In 2001, my partner Simone, our then 1.5 year-old daughter and I came to Sunshine Coast in Queensland, Australia for holiday to visit a good friend I’d made in South Africa, and it immediately felt like home. To cut a long story short: within 18 months -and with lots of immigration luck- we moved to Australia permanently. I set up my Body Stress Release practice after 2 years of travelling around Australia, and one fateful day Simone spotted an ad in a local paper promoting a course in Life Coaching.
The rest, in a way, is history. I became a certified Life Coach, kept practicing Body Stress Release, and progressed from there. I’ve met some amazing people along the way, such as Glenn Dietzel, for whose company Awakened LLC I became lead-coach, working with business coaching clients all around the world for about 7 years. I conducted personal growth, NLP and personality type workshops in Sweden, the Netherlands, and Australia. In 2011, I was offered a role as a coach and facilitator conducting employability skills training; I qualified as a Counsellor and started working with Campbell Page Employment Services as a counsellor. I now work in my private practice and work as a contract-counsellor for Employee Assistance Programs providers Benestar, LifeWorks, Converge International, Acacia Connection, Eudoxia, Workplace Wellness Australia, Drake Workwise, D’Accord OAS and LifeSkills Australia. I have also taught Diploma and Bachelor level Counselling for a private Registered Training Organisation and a local University. The key values mentioned earlier still stand, and I still live by them.
Change for the better IS possible.
I know from experience how daunting taking the first step in a new direction can seem to be. I also know how fulfilling and profitable taking that step can be! If you are ready for you, I am ready for you.
Marc de Bruin. Your Counsellor, Coach & Mentor