A New Beginning: Here Comes Geronima!

Pink blossom After a Spring break, I'm back with my Women Speakers Series, ready to blog about Women, Leadership and Creativity.

Women in big corporations, or women entrepreneurs?

Women learning to play the rules in a men's world or women creating their own rules, in a new world?

What about new learning, women adopting new technologies with ancient wisdom? Women embracing change with confidence, wild and raw power and generous enthusiasm in a global world?

Too many topics, too many tags, too many categories. What about the focus I had decided at the end of last year? Women Leaders and Presentation Skills?

Time to pause and reflect.

What happened?

During the last two weeks, mother nature has been very
generous with us, at home, in France.

  • Our family expanded. My husband 's eldest daughter gave birth to a beautiful baby boy , we
    all went to visit her in Arcachon, near Bordeaux
  • Back home, we spent one week taking care of our garden, harvesting 
    the blossoming flowers and trees  with our …seven children. 
  • I took a break from blogging and put my professional project on hold.

Our home has been a busy beehive! I gave myself 100% to my family's needs and adapted myself to the telluric changes such an event meant into our lives, for my husband and me, too.

What did I learn?

  • I reflected on women's ages and aging, took comfort in reading the wisdom of older women. I connected with plenty of wonderful young grand-mothers, around me and on twitter and shared experiences with them.I met Julie Daley and her wonderful blog and passion for the creative power of women.
  • I discovered a whole new world and also realized I had still a long way to go, to get my youngest ones (and the big ones too!) ready for adulthood.
  • I was reminded that time was running. I was not ready to become a retired grand-ma.I had still plenty of things to accomplish.I felt torn between a sense of eternity and emergency.

What are the challenges today?

Feeding my big family, making money out of my business, living my talk and empowering myself, as a woman.

  • I received two major training and consulting offers, which will imply transformation in my business, more travels, shifts in my clients. It took me back to my past expertise, to the corporate world and big business schools and universities. Is it what I wanted to spend the rest of my days doing? The clients who called me wanted me to coach men senior managers. How am I going to fit in all? Where does Geronimo fit ? Where is my soul?
  • I also reflected on my experience with "Your Next Presentation", the innovative and interactive online training and coaching tool I had launched back in January. People seemed to be very curious and interested, but nobody bought it! I was also very shy at promoting it, almost ashamed of making a sales page, of tweeting and blogging about it. Having very mixed feelings about marketing techniques for coaches, and still looking for my true way to sell, being kind and entertaining, and not too pushy, but still selling! I still very much believe it can work, provided I find the way to market it to the people who need it!

Who are the people I want to spend most time working with?

  • Who are my customers? Corporate executives, MBA students, high potential managers? Am I really writing for those when I'm blogging, when I'm twitting? When I'm building cooperation via Skype with wonderful brilliant women across the world?
  • Or women entrepreneurs? Women in transition, just like me, just like you, women consultants, coaches, trainers, business owners who desperately want to prove they can make it, even if it's an everyday chalenge? To blossom as a woman, as a mom as a business owner, as a peaceful warrior, as global citizen, as a creative human being?

Wow! I needed a big breathing space to think about it all!

Today, everybody's back to school with new classes (the 3
youngest), to university with new exams (3 oldest),back home with a new
baby (the new mom), back to the corporate world with new projects( my
hubby) and back to Geronimo Leadership for me!

Where's my North Pole Star? What's my vision? What are my priorities? What's my next step?

Why am I writing all this?

Because Geronimo is slowly morphing into a new Geronima, a feminine creative essence of the wild woman 's wisdom.

And sharing the process of this transformation is exactly what I want to spend my time doing during the next half of my life.

Giving birth to the new Eve and being the midwife of other women's blossoming.

Because I am re-designing a new website, where I will package all my expertise to serve women entrepreneurs, who want to transform their dreams into reality, a step-by-step road-map, helping them keep their soul, their compass and their energy and have fun doing it!

The feminine Anima of Geronimo is emerging. I still have my bow and my arrows, I'm still riding my wild horse, but I don't have to pretend to be an old Male Apache Chief anymore.

Because I care for you and wanted to let you know the changes ahead.

I would love to hear your feedback and reactions to this post where I'm sharing my truth and my vulnerability. I really care for your feedback.

Transition places are not famous for being comfortable and in the midst of my life, I'm torn between conflicting directions again (like in the myth of Demeter and Artemis, I shared earlier in a post)

Here are 3 questions for you:

  1. What do you think about the change from Geronimo to Geronima?
  2. What would you like to find more of in this blog, now that it's more focused on women entrepreneurs and less on big corporations?
  3. Do you have a similar story you would like to share here? A story of transition or a challenge about positioning yourself, about finding your niche, about getting to know which client you want to work with?

22 thoughts

  1. Marion, this transmogrification is lovely, and inspirational. Women of all ages have too much to offer our world to somehow feel compelled to mask their gifts behind male mindsets. There exists no reason to copy the stereotypical male leader, by and large because a great many of them have leadership all wrong. Leadership is not about climbing a proverbial ladder, wearing a tie, or standing at the pinnacle of a self-serving career expecting others to bow down to one’s ‘greatness;’ instead, leadership has everything to do with lifting another within reach of dreams of their own. Leadership is about nurturing. Leadership is about serving. Leadership is about love.
    I greatly appreciate the opportunity you have taken to stand in the bend along your life’s journey to carefully look both ways. Looking one way, you have come to terms with all the wonderful things you do for so many. Looking the other, you realize there remains so many more wonderful things waiting for you — and others like you — to accomplish.
    I am reminded of Native American leadership. For Geronimo, and all Native American chiefs, COMMUNITY is paramount. A Native American chief is the leader precisely because that’s the way the community wants it to be. The community sees within their chosen leader a servant’s heart. So it is with your ‘community’ Marion. We see within you that same heart. As such, it seems to me GERONIMA is a perfect way to repackage yourself during the next half of your life!
    In closing, I can’t help but ask if your heart might be tugging at you to move slightly beyond women entrepreneurs to include younger ladies (teens and twenty-somethings) ~ the next generation of women entrepreneurs!? Of course, many younger ladies may never read your posts, but the men and women who do will surely come to know how incredibly important it is for them to reach out their hand and engage those young women and nurture within them the serving nature of leadership ~ a leadership of love that makes our world a better place for all!
    I’m very happy for you, and all those you shall serve, Marion!

  2. Marion, I greatly respect your openness and honesty. I’ll bet the majority of women in business are quietly struggling with the same questions. You just happen to be brave enough to put them out there in front of the world!
    I never had to juggle work and children At 39 I married a man who is a full generation my senior and has 7 adult children. I’m now an “insta-granny” to 13 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren. At only 62! (I love it.)
    Two years ago, after spending my entire working life as a singer/actress/teacher, I decided to start a whole new career as a public speaker. Using the skills I had learned over a lifetime of performing, I created a training program to help people vanquish their fear of public speaking and polish their skills. Now I’m busy finding the people who will pay for what I have to offer. It’s fun. Indeed, I’m having the fun now, in my 60’s, that I would have liked to have in my 30’s (although I didn’t have the experience then to do what I’m now doing.)
    My point in this rambling is that I, too, am in transition — not just starting a new career but leaping into the whole new world of business. It’s scary and thrilling at the same time. I applaud the emergence of Geronima, and will watch her unfolding with interest. Brava!

  3. The journey is amazing. I was writing on my own blog about my personal journey to embracing leadership. There is something in the air….stopping to smell the roses makes it even more beautiful.
    Glad to be able to share this journey with you

  4. Ah Marion, you have such wonderful insight both to yourself and what is being asked of you. It takes a strong and courageous person to be willing to stop, look and listen.
    Geronima is a wonderful tweak and I for one am looking forward to what will now surely be a rapid growth period for you. I love @DrJackKing’s suggestion that there might be some mileage in looking to the future leaders too. The dynamics would be very different and I feel that someone like you would shine with them.
    Question 3 resonated strongly with me as I too have been going through a major transitioning with regard to niche, positioning and doing what I know best … helping people find their feet in challenging situations – namely relationships and divorce.
    Last year I chose to follow a path which took me away from divorce, thinking my time had been done. What happened was that the doors didn’t naturally open, or they shut suddenly. In February I met my new business partner and we’re co-designing a mediation service which unlike most others, bridges the gap between court (she’s legally trained in Family Law)and coaching/therapy. Our combined skill set and willingness to use technology, telephone and Skype mean that we are able to offer clear, precise and accessible mediation to busy professionals and expats who have up till now been denied access to most mediators.
    The most amazing bit is that some work I did 2+ years ago and put into an ‘ideas’ folder is now coming back out and being used productively!! I also have to remind myself of a commitment I made when I first started out in the world of coaching … ‘I will make a difference to the way divorce is handled and viewed in this country’.
    We all have unique voices and in our mid life it can be easy to ignore their calling, but it’s even easier to surrender to it 🙂
    Congratulations Marion, I’ll be supporting you all the way!

  5. Wow Marion I applaud you. This is hallowed turf that you are standing on and you blog trips with the authentic calling. I would say that you are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses, your ancestors are cheering you on as Geronima takes her place in the pantheon. For such a time as these you have been created, so few who get a glimpse of their destiny have the courage to step into it. I know you will and in so doing will find the flow.
    Marion your blog is affirming of you and encouraging to many. Step in and step up with passion, pride and a can do attitude, in this calling you cannot fail.
    Live your dream, make it reality.
    Bless you

  6. Marion your willingness to share the different parts of your journey is inspirational. We all go through multiple phases, but most are less open and courageous about airing the thought processes that bring us to those various cross roads that we come to, either in life or professionally. We are all in transition, all of the time and it’s great to see someone step up and tell everyone that it’s OK! Great affirming post.

  7. Re: TypePad: [Geronimo Leadership Coaching ] @DrJackKing submitted a comment on "A New Beginning: Here Comes Geronima!"
    What a wonderful comment, Jack!
    Among all my friends, you’re the one who understands me best on native American Chiefs.
    You have an incredible sensitivity and wisdom that enables you to access the “feminine creative” Leadership, that you describe also as Servant Leadership. I’m with you on that journey, Jack and will treasure your kind words.
    You are mentioning young women, teenagers, girls, and I have a tender heart for them, that’s absolutely true. The Next Generation of women are to be cherished and mentored and a source of inspiration for learning also for us.
    Thank you again for caring and nurturing our friendship.

  8. Re: TypePad: [Geronimo Leadership Coaching ] Heather Stubbs submitted a comment on "A New Beginning: Here Comes Geronima!"
    Dear Heather,
    I love hearing about people‘s stories and yours could make a fantastic book!
    Wow, adopting 7 grown-up children, 13 grand-children, 10 great grand children! And I thought ours was a big family!
    What an impressive scene it must be when you have family reunions, thanksgiving…
    Thank you for sharing also your professional path with us, transitioning smoothly to a public speaking coach and trainer. You’re an artist and a passionate woman, your clients will be so lucky to have the privilege to be coached by you, Heather.

  9. Re: TypePad: [Geronimo Leadership Coaching ] David McQueen submitted a comment on "A New Beginning: Here Comes Geronima!"
    Yes, David, there’s something in the air…Can almost feel it, like in the song…
    Coaching can be done with all our senses, adding our intuition, the dance of our Soul.
    Happy to be on same path as you, David, I will go and visit you at Magnifi scent Minds…

  10. Re: TypePad: [Geronimo Leadership Coaching ] Jackiewalker submitted a comment on "A New Beginning: Here Comes Geronima!"
    Dear Jackie, your words resonate with me and encourage me. Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing your story with us, answering my questions, giving me precious feed back. I would love to work with future leaders, like you and @DrJackKing said.
    You have no idea how much it counts for me.
    I love the way you describe your business evolution, the different stages you went through. How suddenly, everything seems to make sense , like in a JigSaw Puzzle, where one missing tiny little element makes the whole picture meaningful.
    You seem to have found a very effective way to answer your calling and answer specific needs for expats in France. I’d love to learn more about it, and recommend you to some friends.
    Thank you again

  11. Re: TypePad: [Geronimo Leadership Coaching ] Kriss Akabusi submitted a comment on "A New Beginning: Here Comes Geronima!"
    Really? Twin brother Kriss?
    Is that YOU applauding ME? No, I’m kidding, and that’s always the effect you have on me. Maybe it’s to hide that I’m really embarrassed and humbled that you take the time to provide me with such a powerful and inspiring feedback.
    I feel blessed. Can say no more. Truly blessed.

  12. Re: TypePad: [Geronimo Leadership Coaching ] twitter.com/DorothyDalton submitted a comment on "A New Beginning: Here Comes Geronima!"
    Dear Dorothy,
    I called you Bagheera earlier on twitter, in response to a brilliant and provocative post you wrote today about women bullying at work, comparing the work place with a jungle.
    In Jungle book, Bagheerra is the most clever character. She’s a mentor to naked Moowgly. She offers protection and power to make wise decisions, based on observation, common sense and intelligence.
    Sometimes, I feel a bit like Baloo and I just want to have fun and sing “the bear, bare necessities”, rubbing my back on trees. Baloo provides permission to be happy and seize the day.
    When you combine Bagherra and Baloo, you get a powerful tandem, that will get us far ahead in our common workshops and trainings for women entrepreneurs.
    En attendant, bravo et merci pour le soutien et l’amitié, Dorothy.

  13. Hi Marion
    Just wanted to let you know that you’ve touched me and moved me and I applaud your honesty and your bravery and your willingness to explore the unknown. And congratulations of course on your lovely grandchild.
    Hugs, Olivia

  14. I feel so thankful today for being your friend, for knowing you better and better each day. This post is a peek into your bountiful heart! I LOVE IT! Tomorrow I will be publishing that post I promised you about what interruptions are… you continue to inspire me, powerful, lovely woman! Much love to you from Mexico

  15. Re: TypePad: [Geronimo Leadership Coaching ] Olivia Mitchell submitted a comment on "A New Beginning: Here Comes Geronima!"
    Dear Olivia, coming from you, someone I admire and respect greatly and who inspires me professionally, your comment is priceless.
    The time has come for me to spread my wings, and to trust the parachute will open as I jump in the unknown!
    Your comment is a delight, thanks you. Hugs, Marion.

  16. How heart warming is it to receive such a joyful message, from Mexico!!!
    I can't wait to read your post on interruptions, you inspired me last week when we talked about it on Skype.
    What's the interruption? What's interrupting in our life? What if it was what mattered most?…
    You will express it much better than me, dear Monica and will touch others by your words, like you did for me.
    Hugs my precious friend
    From Beaujolais, with Love 

  17. Marion,
    How absolutely wonderfully beautiful this is. You. You speaking truth. You sharing your vulnerable soft underbelly with us, your lucky readers and admirers.
    Life has invited you forth into a new place and you have answered that invitation with a resounding, “Yes”.
    I am so thrilled to know you and am honored and humbled by your mention, here. It makes me bright with innocent delight to know we are on this journey together, two young grandmothers together, one wise woman to another.
    I look forward to diving into this deep rich fertile unknown, side-by-side.
    So many blessings to you and your new vision.

  18. Dear Marion,
    It is hard to “come in last” when so many have already said so much, so well.
    You are an extraordinary woman and your transition from “Geronimo” to “Geronima” seems so right. You are a champion… among women, for women, and for all those who are *becoming* women. In a world where real and true champions are rare, you shine.
    Thank you for sharing your journey. I am humbled and inspired to search for the next iteration of *me*.

  19. Oh, Marion. This is so exciting to read. It sounds like you have new passion, new excitement, and new focus. Brava!
    As you tune in and listen to your heart, as you let your soul stirrings lead you, you will find exactly the right women who will benefit from the wealth of wisdom you have to share.
    I’m excited for you. I’m cheering you on. And I’m here to support you and women in any way I can.

  20. Gwyn, you never come last. When you come, you come first. You came first when I opened my mailbox on Friday .
    You come first and you are unique in your generous wisdom.
    Today your comment goes straight to my heart because I actually don't feel at all like a champion, I'm very tired and quiet, rather washed out.
    It must be the secondary effects of the transformation process!
    So thank you for your precious support.
    Marion Chapsal
    Geronimo Leadership Coaching
    Helping Women develop Leadership and Communication skills in a Cross-Cultural environment
    Twitter @MarionChapsal
    Tel 00 33 (0) 6 73 70 53 09 

  21. How heart warming it is to receive so much encouragement and cheering from the whole world!
    Thank you for stopping by and joining our crusade for girls and women!
    I know I can count on you on board! 

  22. I am inspired Marion and so appreciate you sharing your evolution with us here. I love the shift to Geronima! When listening to your story via our You Matter interview the shift you had already made in this direction in your heart and soul was evident.
    The timing of these consulting offers is so interesting. It seems that when we declare we are ready to change universal forces seem to press us to choose between the path we were on and the path we are choosing for our future. It can be so challenging to balance the need to produce income in the short term with what we need to pursue our chosen path for the future.
    Personally I look forward to hearing more about your decision process regarding this as I continue to face this challenge myself.

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