493. Helping Women Thrive in Their Post-Divorce Lives
Sitting on her couch in Lisbon, Portugal, Vanessa looked at her life. “It seemed amazing, from the outside. I had everything I needed, but I had nothing.” Later, she would see that moment as the second major turning point in her life.
Vanessa Gaboleiro, a professional in human resources (PHR), is a transformation mentor who works with positive and empowered women in their 20s and 30s in recreating their lives after divorce. After her own divorce almost six years ago, and with her own transformation and learnings, she now helps women thrive in their own post-divorce lives. Vanessa specializes in confidence building, career advancement, smart dating and goal planning. She writes for the Huffington Post and has been featured in Prevention Magazine.
How Did You Start Using Your Talents?
Born to entrepreneurial Portuguese parents in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Vanessa grew up in a bilingual home. “I didn’t know much about myself, especially at 15 or 16, but I knew that I loved psychology and people and understanding their behaviors.” At 18, her parents decided to move the family to Portugal. “I struggled, but it taught me so much about myself. It taught me that I was stronger than I thought I was, and that I could make my own decisions. I realized it was always up to me to take control of my own destiny. I started discovering what was in me and who I was as a person when I was faced with the challenges living abroad.”
The Most Impactful Turning Point?
There were two major turning points. The first one was living abroad and getting my undergraduate degree in Lisbon, Portugal. The second one was my divorce at 25. In both of those moments, I learned so much about myself.
The Most Powerful Lessons Learned?
“At a crucial moment in my 20s, I looked at my life. It seemed amazing, from the outside. I had everything I needed, but I had nothing. I didn’t understand how destructive the relationship with my then husband was, or how unhappy I was. I began to see that I was using my career moves to try to put a lid on what was happening in my personal life, without really digging in deep to see what was happening to me. I was trying to mask it with changes in my career, so I didn’t have to change myself. Fortunately, I also came to realize I was in a situation that I could control. I could help myself.”
Steps to Success from Vanessa Gaboleiro
- Honestly ask yourself, “Am I really happy?”
- Focus on discovering what your passion really is.
- Imagine what will change and how you will feel when you discover what you are meant to do.
On Her Bookshelf
Eat Pray Love: One Woman’s Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia, by Elizabeth Gilbert
Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail, by Cheryl Strayed
Loving What Is: Four Questions That Can Change Your Life, by Byron Katie and Stephen Mitchell
Connecting With Vanessa Gaboleiro
Ultimate Guide to Starting Over after Divorce at www.vanessag.me
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