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Name: Brigitte van Tuijl

Business: Brigitte van Tuijl, coaching for business owners

Industry: Coaching & Consulting

Location: Leiden, Netherlands

Reason for starting: A couple of reasons, starting with the most important reason first; I’m not the type to feel happy or thrive in a job, because I need and want to do my own thing, in my own way, and because what I do does not fit into any job-description I know of.

Related: Read about another entrepreneur who is changing the way women lead here. 

How do you define success? To me, success means to have a business and life I love. To make a difference in the lives of others. To fulfill my potential and my mission, and have fun doing it.

Biggest Success: My biggest success until now, has been the complete overhaul of my business in 2012. I was already a successful career coach, working in The Netherlands but for a long time I had wanted more. I wanted to work globally, in English. It took me a while before I took the step, because I was so scared to take the leap. In December 2011 I finally took that leap and I changed my audience, all of my programs and services, and started working in English instead of Dutch. The first new program I created sold out within a week. The reason I see this as my biggest success so far, is because it was such a huge risk for me. It could have totally failed – but it didn’t. I’m very happy with how it turned out and proud of myself for making it happen as I basically built a completely new business and had it up and running in that same year.

What is your top challenge and how have you addressed it? My fear of being visible. That’s something that really held me back in the first years of my business. I didn’t have a website nor did I do any marketing at all during the first 2 years of my business. I overcame it by looking my fears straight on, instead of turning away from them, and taking baby-steps to make myself more visible. I also worked on overcoming those fears by changing my limiting beliefs and by working with a coach on these issues.

Related: How to be Your Own Brand

Who is your most important role model? Pippi Longstocking. She’s the star in a series of children’s books written by Astrid Lindgren. I used to read these books over and over again when I was a child. Pippi is strong, independent, and does exactly what she wants, whenever she wants to, without waiting for anyone’s permission or consent. And does all this in a very amicable way – everyone likes her (well, maybe not all grown-ups). I wanted to be just like Pippi when I grew up. Her freedom, strength, independence and way to make every day something special and fun, really spoke to me. I wanted that too! To this day, this is how I choose to live, and I have built my business and life in a way that enables me to do just that.

Twitter   @brigittevanT

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