Eleonora Chessa

A warrior for love.

I provide consulting and coaching services to C suite leaders and teams that want to turn ambitious mid to long term visions into reality, by working cohesively and effectively.

I work with them using the 3 Step Gardener Approach, with a mixture of consulting techniques, facilitating and coaching.

Step 1: Observe the garden as it is and identify any weeds – what are the things that get in the way and what are the strengths in the current situation.
Step 2: Uproot the weeds – remove obstacles to constructive communication, internal limiting constructs and assumptions
Step 3: Plant new seeds to grow what you want to see, sustain the changes.

What was early life like?

Early life was a love-filled expat kid adventure. I had the privilege of immersing myself in different cultures, meeting different people and learning new languages over and over. As well as being multicultural by parents, each place I lived in has weaved the patterns of my being into Technicolor dream coat. I was constantly shown how diversity can cohabit and create loving bonds beyond religion, culture and background.

In terms of challenges and great difficulties, what did you have to overcome or face up to?

This was a was a gift that came with challenges at the same time. The first challenge was to find my sense of belonging and identity, despite the constant changes. I used to feel like I was missing out on long term friendships, feeling rooted. The second challenge was to find new ways to connect with people who have different cultural expectations and ways of connecting. I often felt a sense of impostor syndrome because of the way others saw or related to me … I often heard sentences like “ What kind of an Italian are you if you do not …..” or “ You sound American … you must be American”.

I repeatedly saw that creating safety through boxing others, is a common human need, and this boxing can cause isolation or resilience. The only difference between the outcomes is how we choose to make sense of ourselves in the world. I learned that belonging and a definition of identity are common human needs. They allow us to have firm constructs about how to behave and show up in order to function in our world.

What did you realise had to change? What kind of ‘leap of faith’ did you need to take and what was the calling?

After many years of feeling being me was never quite enough, I recall one colleague I looked up to for her success and integrity, once showing me a picture and saying:

this is what you need to be like if you want to make it in this world”.

The image showed 2 snapshots. In the first, a fluffy bunny that looked like it was about to get eaten by a snarling wolf. The second, the same cute fluffy bunny next to the carcass of the wolf. My interpretation was “ you are too soft… you need to be more willing to bring out the fangs and do what it takes, to be a successful leader”.

My heart sank, not only was I not willing to lose the empathy and compassion, I was also unwilling to “do whatever it takes” to get ahead. There had to be another way: one that allowed me to be who I am and still have an impact and succeed by my definition. I went and took an Emotional Intelligence course, thinking I was lacking in the department, based on that feedback. It turned out my EI is high, and my compassion and empathy are gifts, not liabilities. So I left my corporate work to retrain as a coach and leadership facilitator, start my own business, to bring back humanity and powerful heartfelt connection to teams and leadership roles.

And because of this, what lessons did you learn? What revelations came to you? What had you now mastered?

I learned that taking a stand takes courage. That becoming an entrepreneur takes balls and I mastered skills that allow me to not be driven by my old self-limiting beliefs, reactive tendencies and fears, but rather find strength in them

What new skills, tools and practices then became essential in how you help others and why does it matter?

I trained to intentionally use my intuition, listening and connecting skills that being an expat taught me to maximise the coaching skills learned at the Coaches Training Institute. A full year of leadership training and development taught me models to cultivate self-mastery, alongside becoming a Mindfulness teacher.

A warrior for love.

Am certified in profiling surveys, all of which you can see in my CV… What matters most though is not so much the tools and skills you can see on my CV, but how I choose to serve others after complementing my unique experiences with the acquire tools and skills. It is something you have to experience, it is heart centred, deep-rooted transformation, not just surface deep skills sharing – no BS involved or accepted

Describe your object, what is its significance? What does it represent for you?

Sekhmet (the Mighty One) daughter of Ra the Sun God, is an Egyptian goddess with the head of a lion and the body of a human. The Egyptians believed the Sun provided life. Sekhmet, while a fearsome warrior, was also the patron of physicians. Even though she was powerful and a destructive force, she was a healer, with the power to renew. Sekhmet represents the balanced use of power.

She is a representation of the duality and paradoxes inside us and in our modern world. To navigate these paradoxes we must master our own light and shadow, make tough decisions for the better and balance our power. Only then we hone true belonging in ourselves and our world. She reminds me of the importance of Nature to restore the connection to myself and with others. And she represents the fierce courage and gentle compassion it takes to make a difference.

What closing wisdom will you share? What do you want us to know?

Being ourselves is much more sustainable than keeping up appearances, yet we often choose the discomfort and pain of hiding our imperfections or be someone more perfect and “acceptable”, foregoing true belonging and connection – a bit of a paradox.

What if we got comfortable with trusting that letting go of the old acceptable, and trying on the new from a place of authenticity, will actually attract the right people and opportunities for us to succeed?

If you’d like to discover more about Eleonora Chessa and how she could help you, get in touch by clicking this link: eleonora@chessacoaching.com