Anne | From family court advisor to idea incubator
By Eleni Meraki
I graduated in Sociology and Social Research after trying out a couple of studies, like Law and Business. Child criminology fascinated me as I was intrigued by what has caused the untouchable aspect in the psyche of the children to be prosecuted on such a young age.
Generally my interests floated everywhere which allowed me to experience an expansive range of jobs; from being a chef in Australia to a theater producer in Amsterdam. After a few years I decided I had to embark on a career path and got my first “real” job at the Child Care and Protection Board.
5 THINGS ABOUT
SOCIOLOGIST | WRITER | VISUAL THINKER | IDEA INCUBATOR | VIGOROUS
There was a very clear moment that made me decide to switch. I have had experienced more of these clear moments in my life, usually they occurred in public spaces for some reason.
In a public space in the center of town my mind started wandering off and all these questions came up: What keeps all these people busy? What are they doing and what would they want to be doing? What is it that they show to the world and what do they only keep for themselves? It was this painful realization on that particular moment that kicked off my journey; the pain I felt for all these brilliant ideas that left undeveloped. From that moment onwards all the right people seemed to enter into my life, including my business partner Kirsten.
LEAP OF FAITH
I caught myself being in a straitjacket at my current job. For quite a while I felt I was missing the freedom to express my creativity. I couldn’t share and develop my ideas that were based on allowing things to flow in an organic way and break open certain fixed routines. I tried very hard to change things within the organisation eventually causing friction with the management. It wasn’t until later in this process that I realised I was the one blocking my own creativity. By trying to change my environment I was looking outside of myself to change things within myself. Anger, frustration and sleepless nights were all part of the process. I didn’t express my feelings whilst from the inside I was boiling from all these suppressed emotions. I felt trapped until I came face to face with myself in a personal development training.
I knew there was just one thing left to do; to make space for myself. I had to quit my job, trust and see what would arise. This recognition and decision made my fears for this step strangely disappear into a clear silence.
It started at a party where I met a coach that was interested in coaching me. He loved my idea and wanted to help me develop it further. I did a visualisation meditation with him and that was the first time I clearly saw what Idéfix would have to look like. He was my kick-start as I found excitement and motivation to get started building my dream.
In parallel with my regular job I had started a coaching training as I was really interested in coaching people. Parallel to my studying I started organising and hosting events in the evenings as a form of practice. Idéfix didn’t happen overnight. It took time to ripe, about five to six years.
Idéfix is for people with an idea that require help with making it tangible. An idea is never flat, there is always a deeper need behind it. We help people to visualise and put it in a framework that requires action.
In our 90 Days Program we offer a combination of group sessions and individual coaching. Participants start to experiment with their idea, share their progress with their peers and overcome limiting beliefs.
After completion of the program you're ready for takeoff into the big world. We offer our participants an opportunity to share their idea, in an intimate and safe environment. Like that supporting hand in your back when you try to bike without training wheels for the first time.
I can’t live with the money I make yet but hope to do so at the end of this year. I never really made calculations but just knew that until the end of the year I was able to live. I started with Idéfix parallel with working in a fulltime job. This allowed me to build up a framework, which didn’t need a smart model at first. There were no great investments needed until now. For the next step of Idéfix we will have to acquire capital to set up our café. We hope to do so with a crowd funding campaign.
I find it interesting to live in a period of time where there is no abundance of money. It feels light and clear in a strange kind of way. You become much more conscious about what you really need.
THE TOUGH TIMES
I find it tough sometimes not having someone to tell me how this all works and wonder if what we do and how we organize things really leads to the bigger picture.
There is a downside of wanting to do things by your own. You have to admit what your weaknesses are and outsource what you really can’t do yourself.
I look for mentors but there is so much going on and continuously changing that I can’t keep them up to date.
I see things very easily and clearly but it requires a lot more to really work things through. When you have a company there are small everyday steps and big visionary ideas. Sometimes the one is sabotaging the other. You get caught up in the bigger picture or in the smaller stuff.
5 INSIDER TIPS
Dare to ask things and keep on doing that. There will be no time you know it all.
Keep sharing your vision, even in times you might not believe in it fully. Your network will help you move forward.
There will never be a moment you have “success”. What is that in the first place? Enjoy the process of falling and getting up again – like a child’s play.
Throw overboard what doesn’t work. Let it go.
Start small and keep it practical.
Written by Eleni Meraki
Eleni is the founder of Guts & Tales. She lives in Athens and enjoys roaming the world as much as she can. She is a multi-passionate entrepreneur with big dreams and a big mission; to empower you to live a life you truly enjoy living.
Click on the About Eleni tab to read her full story.