My winding road from the Prairies, through the Alps, and into Africa.
I was born and raised in Williston, North Dakota, USA. My father operated the farm while my mother managed the house. I inherited their fierce work ethic, positive outlook, and playful sense of humor. However, a life on North Dakota's prairies wasn't for me; I yearned for more.
The call to adventure.
I moved to an urban jungle to get my degree. My desire to explore new lands smoldered, and I ended up graduating in a cloister in Spain. By the late 90s, I had signed on with a major consulting firm. I backpacked around South-East Asia between assignments. I was a carefree 20-something living the dream abroad -- educated, young, and ambitious.
Punch-drunk by… what else?
With two weeks left in my trip to Vietnam, I met this guy from Switzerland. Love is a mighty motivator, isn't it? It compels you to rearrange your life to accommodate it. I moved to my husband's hometown and we got married eight weeks later. Little did I know that I'd spend the next 20+ years living, traveling, and working across cultures.
"Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face."
An accidental expat.
My childhood didn't prepare me for the transformation to life abroad. I frequently found myself sinking in unfamiliar waters. I had to reorient entirely and change how I swam. Things began to get easier as I worked with the tide instead of against it. I uncurled from the fetal position, learned from my mistakes, made some new friends, and picked up a few languages. I experienced firsthand the joys and pains of transformation in transition.
In August 2013, I gave up my "dream job" in Switzerland, started my own company, and relocated with my family to Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. This move pushed me to deal with new, unexpected challenges: Ebola at our doorstep, a political uprising, a transitional government, pre-election concerns, and a coup d'état, just for starters.
Uncertainty builds resilience.
I've managed the rollercoaster of supporting the expat assignment, running a growing business (even when copper cables were stolen from my phone lines), and caring for a young family. Transformation isn't easy in the best of circumstances, much less while coping with an unfamiliar and turbulent environment.
Exposing chinks in the armor.
In January 2016, Ouagadougou fell victim to an attack by Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM). This decline of security in the region was a game-changer. It catapulted me into a life of navigating a family split between Burkina Faso and Switzerland. At the end of 2016, we were reunited and relocated to South Africa.
Uncertainty builds resilience.
The COVID-19 pandemic hit, and with just hours to decide, we chose to pack and leave South Africa for an undetermined amount of time. I lived out of a suitcase, hopping from family to friends in Switzerland. I slept on an air mattress for six months while homeschooling my children and continuing to run my location-independent business. Ambitiously determined and despite the worldwide turmoil and fragile global mobility, I exceeded my 2020 goals.
Live an Olympic-level life.
My education, personal journey, and client experiences have led me to develop robust processes that minimize the time required to adapt to whatever life throws at you and maximize satisfaction and success along the way. Using the ATT Method, I help my clients anticipate challenges, course-correct, and find solutions in times of transition that align with their core values and needs.