How I got my bum off of Wall Street and found my passion!

So how the f-bomb did, I do it?

How did I get myself from Wall Street to where I am in my career today? I don’t often tell the unedited version of this story, but a couple of months ago I had the pleasure of meeting the ladies from She Geeks Out, a networking group in the Boston area that builds dynamic communities through events, networking and education. The lovely owners, Rachel and Felicia, invited me to do a podcast with them, and let me tell you – they got the story behind the story!

I shared a few behind the scenes secrets and spilled all the beans on exactly how I went from a little farm girl living in South Africa to a money broker in London and New York City. But what happened that finally broke the camel’s back? What made me realize what my true passions and purpose were, and just how did I go on to become an award-winning Pilates instructor and Best of Boston® Life Coach?

It’s all right here. Press play below and find out how you can determine your passion and purpose too: (ps – Please note that there are some sensitive language and topics in this podcast, please listen with headphones if you have little ones around. Don’t judge me – I warned you it was unedited 😉 )

Tell me in the comments:

Recently found your passion or still looking for it? Tell me what your passion is or how you figured it out, or what you’re doing to try to pinpoint your next career move? Share your thoughts below.

Struggling to pinpoint the perfect career for you?

Sign up for my Career Clarity Series, launching this Friday, May 5th! (Click here to get the best tips that will take you from aimlessly searching to hunting for the precise and perfect job for you!)


Get more information about She Geeks Out:

Visit their website here to learn more about their events, other inspiring people and their corporate training programs around diversity and inclusion.

Want to discover your purpose and land a career you love?

What would it be like to have clarity about a career that will like you up?
Imagine how much time you’ll save and the joy you’ll feel when you finally discover a purposeful career that will give you the satisfaction and financial freedom you crave. 
The Ultimate Career Bootcamp will help you do pinpoint that fulfilling and financially stable career!


The right time to quit your job and start your business!

Today we’re going to be discussing when the right time is to quit your job and start growing your business.

Figuring out when to leave a job is precisely what clients come to me for. To answer this question, we have to delve a little deeper into you and who you are, because it’s a unique situation and it’s different for everybody.

Here are my guidelines that I give my Ultimate Career Bootcamp and Private clients to help them pin down the perfect time to quit their jobs:
  1. You do want to make sure that you are financially secure. If you have a side business and you still have a day job, you want to make sure that your side business is doing reasonably well so that when you do quit your job, you can ramp up business pretty quickly. If you want to quit your job and start from scratch, you want to make sure that you have some savings in the bank to help you while you’re ramping up your business. If you’re not financially secure, you will do what I did, and you will have a little bit of a panic attack because finances might get too tight. And then you’ll be tempted to hop right back into whatever it is that you’re doing now and ultimately just end up being unhappy again.
  2. The next thing that you want to ask yourself is: What is my primary goal? If your long-term goal is that you want to be the owner of your company, then there’s no better time than now to quit your job. Remember that it can be daunting to take this leap of faith to start your own business. I totally appreciate and feel you if you’re in that situation right now. But you have to remember that every single minute that is spent in the corporate world is time that you’re not dedicating to growing your business. Ultimately, the longer you hold onto your corporate job, the longer it’s going to take for you to build and ramp up your business and be an entrepreneur.

The answer to the question, “When is the right time for me to quit my job?” is: Right now.

I had this little struggle within myself because I was trying to flip my Pilates business and move more into my coaching business. It was hard for me to let go of my Pilates classes and there was some ego involved. There was also a little bit of “Oh my word, am I going to be able to make bank with my business?”

But here’s ultimately what the deciding factor was for me:

I realized that every single hour that I was spending in my Pilates business was revenue lost in growing my coaching business. You want to make sure that you start to think about it this way.

Think about all the time that you’re going to free up when you no longer have to do your day job, and you can solely focus on growing the thing that you’re passionate about. That was ultimately what helped me to clean out my schedule, focus on my coaching business, and build that.

Now I am so happy that I did that because I’ve exponentially grown my coaching business, and I am so much more excited and happy about where I am at in my career.

Now I’d love to hear from you:  If you’re currently struggling to figure out when the right time is to quit your job and start your business, comment with what’s holding you back below.
OR If you recently went through a similar experience, tell us how you decided when to quit!

Be sure to share this video with two to three friends that could do with this advice right now. Thank you for watching, and I’ll see you next time.

Want to discover your purpose and land a career you love?

What would it be like to have clarity about a career that will like you up?
Imagine how much time you’ll save and the joy you’ll feel when you finally discover a purposeful career that will give you the satisfaction and financial freedom you crave. 
The Ultimate Career Bootcamp will help you do pinpoint that fulfilling and financially stable career!


Gabrielle Bernstein’s top tip to figuring out your passion

unnamed-4A couple of weeks ago I had the pleasure of going to Gabrielle Bernstein’s book signing here in Boston. (Gabby’s a motivational speaker, life coach, and author.  Opera has had her as a guest on Super Soul Sundays and the New York Times featured her as a “guru” for the next generation.) She’s currently doing a book tour in the US to promote her new book “The Universe has your Back.”





If you’re in a job that you’re unhappy with at the moment, I have two takeaways for you:

  1. you’re not alone
  2. there is a real movement in the workforce to find meaningful and purposeful work right now

How do I know this?

  1. Gabby, who has a quarter of a million followers on Facebook, also addressed job dissatisfaction and trying to find what to do next in your career to bring meaning and purpose to your life, a few times during the book signing event. (This indicates that she sees this trend and movement to find a fulfilling career from her followers too.)
  2. Stanford University’s most popular course at the moment is a course called “Designing your life” – the course is similar to the principles, tools, and exercises I teach in my Bootcamp. The course’ primary focus is to help students design a career and life that’s both fulfilling and brings them happiness.

So what was her number one tip to help you figure out your next career move?

Stop trying to find what you love from a place of “I hate my job.” 

What does she mean by that? In the life coaching world, this is something we call reframing. You see, for you to find solutions to problems you have to pay close attention to your language and mindset and then reframe it.


Your words become your thoughts, and your thoughts become your actions. Those actions lead to your results.

Or like I said on Instagram once:


So if you’re constantly saying “I hate my job, I can’t stand my career” your brain keeps thinking thoughts surrounding this and can’t find creative solutions outside of that mindset.

So how can you shift your focus?

  1. Stop saying “I hate my job.”
  2. Start to look for everything in your job that is working
  3. Be grateful that you have a job that’s paying your bills and will be your investment source to help you get out of your current situation and onto a career you love.

Want more tips to create a job you love? Take my FREE Take Control of Your Career Training series. Please note that this is the last week to download this training for FREE! Get it now.


What is your biggest obstacle in your career right now? Or were you stuck in a job and figured out your next career? How did you do it? Remember your comment could be just the inspiration someone else needs to find their next job!

Four Things All Career Lovers Have & You’re Missing!

four-things-all-career-lovers-have-youre-missingThere are usually four things people who make successful career transitions do that differentiate them from those who stay stuck. What’s great about these four things, is that with the right support and accountability EVERYONE can implement and design a fulfilling career. In my Ultimate Career Bootcamp, I address and give creative tools and tips to help all participants home in and be successful at these.

So what are the four things that successful career transitioners do? 

Here they are:

1) People who make successful career transitions keep a positive mindset. 
When you go for what you want, there is no room for negativity! It’s important to stay as positive as possible at all times. The good news is that with the right tools, anyone can cultivate a positive frame of mind. Cultivating the right mindset is a huge part of what I help my clients to accomplish.

2) Successful career transitioners take the time to figure out what they want in their career and life.
Clarity is power. It’s crucial for your success: in all areas of life! To get clear on what you want faster, you need to ask the right questions. That’s why I dedicated an entire module in my Bootcamp to it. When you dig in and start to create a clear vision of what you want, it’s easier to move towards it!

3) Thriving career peeps face and conquer their fears.
It’s true – we all have fears. People who pursue their dream careers, however, choose to get real with their fears. They get down and dirty with all their ghosts and then work with those concerns to achieve what they want.

4) Career lovers create solid plans while keeping an open mind. 
Once you know what your career goals are it’s easy to create a plan to achieve them. Successful career transitioners break their goals down into bite-size chunks, so they never get overwhelmed, and they always know what to do next to land their dream job!

If you need help with any of the above, be sure to join me Monday, October 3rd, at 6:30p in my Thriving Career Webinar. In this webinar, I’ll share tips and strategies to better the above principles and develop a career you love. I’ll also tell you about my program that will give you all the support and accountability you need to build a thriving career.


Wishing you career success and abundance,

x Hanneke

Three signs that you need a life coach (and one bonus sign for free)

Did I ever tell you how I came to know about life coaches? You see before I started working with a life coach, I had seen a therapist and a counselor on and off, but had no clue that life coaches even existed.

Although my therapy and counseling sessions were very helpful in my past, by the time I was 24 I was a highly functioning individual craving to make better choices to create more positive changes in my life.

It was at this very time that my company booked a client ski trip to Chamonix in France. Side note: In case you’ve forgotten – I’m originally from South Africa and the only snow this gal had seen a few inches that would fall in my backyard one day every other year and instantly melted away. Needless to say, I didn’t have a clue how to ski.

Dennis and I with my client from American Express in London, Lauren.
Dennis and I with my client from American Express in London, Lauren.

While my colleagues and clients took on the black slopes of the French Alps, I was stuck making pizzas on the baby slopes with my personal ski instructor, Dennis who also happened to be an Olympic skier. Naturally, poor Dennis also rather wanted to be on the black slopes.

However, I quickly progressed to more than just pizza making and we ended up having a blast. We had some fascinating conversations filled with nuggets of wisdom and interesting stories. And it was there on the slopes of the Alps that Dennis introduced me to the term “life coach”.

He quickly figured out that I could benefit from working with one because of the telltale signs that repeated themselves in all my stories.

These three signs are not unique to me, in fact, a lot of us will have one, some or all of them in one or more areas of our lives.

Here are the most common signs that you could benefit from working with a life coach:

1: You feel stuck
Whether it’s in a certain job, relationship or situation in your life, you can’t seem to get yourself out of a particular situations or routine and can’t seem to find a solution or way out of it.

2: You keep being in your way.
Even though you know better, you just can’t seem to keep yourself from making the same bad decisions somehow hoping they’ll lead to better results.

3: You’re negative all the time.
You just can’t help but keep focusing on everything that keeps going wrong in your life. People who do this tend to start every sentence with: “The Problem is…” or “That won’t work, because..”

And then there’s another one most of us have:

BONUS 4: We don’t know how.
We have a sincere desire to create positive change in our lives but don’t know how to do it or feel overwhelmed by what it is we want to accomplish.

A life coach will help you identify and home in on all of the above. They will also help you to achieve your goals and the change you desire in your life faster and with less stress.

I am so grateful for Dennis for informing me about life coaches and their work that day. I left Chamonix and found Shirley, my life coach in London. She helped me work through my barriers and develop some helpful tools that I still use to this day and now teach my clients too. It’s been by far the best investment I’ve ever made in myself.

Have you worked with a life coach before? What was your experience working with them? Tell me in the comments which one of the above is a point that triggers or resonates with you.

The next round of the Ultimate Career Bootcamp starts Oct 10th, be sure to get more information about it and sign up here to get my FREE training series to help you:

  • Discover your purpose by organizing your life and career goals
  • Gain clarity and certainty to hone in on the perfect job for you
  • Get the step-by-step guide you need to build a successful career.

This girl successfully transitioned to her perfect job, working less & earning more!

In today’s entry we touch base with someone I have so much respect for. She has been a Pilates client of mine for almost 3 years and I also had the honor of being her coach as she worked through one of the biggest transitions of her life: becoming a mom and then adjusting her career to fit into her new life. She’s been a consultant for many years and more recently transitioned into her role as accountant at a rapidly growing company. Another fun fact about her is that she also recently got certified as a life coach!

Everyone, meet Leanna Gonzalez!



If you’re an expecting Mama or a new mom, you’re going to absolutely love this interview with Leanna. She shares some extremely valuable tips with us and also tells us a little more about the results she’s experienced since signing up for coaching sessions with yours truly and the Ultimate Career Bootcamp.

Let’s dive right in!

Hanneke: What was your biggest challenge with your career after having a baby?

Leanna: The first year of work after maternity leave was full of personal ups and professional downs – I loved being a mom and having a family, but I felt like a bad employee for not working much more than 40 hours a week. I was watching the career I had worked so hard for slip away, but I wasn’t willing to sacrifice any more time with my family, and I was too exhausted to do more than I was already doing.

Over time, I realized I wasn’t going to be able to succeed in my current role while being the kind of parent and spouse I wanted to be. So, I would say my biggest challenge was understanding and embracing how becoming a mother had changed me. Then figuring out what career role would be the best fit with my new priorities.

I remember so many nights crying over the sink while I was washing and preparing the bottles for daycare the next day, and thinking, “This is so hard! I haven’t seen my son all day; he is asleep as soon as I get him home. Everyone on my team hates me because I left the office at 5. I should do some more work when I finish the bottles … but I need to eat something first, and I’m so exhausted! How do people do this? Everyone else seems to have this all under control! I’m a mess. I’m too exhausted to think about this now.

H: What tools or resources was the greatest help to overcome your new challenges as a working mother?

L: I relied on a daily meditation practice and (somewhat) regular exercise to help maintain balance and perspective through the ups and downs. The real savior was Hanneke’s life coaching though. Working with Hanneke restored my confidence in myself and my abilities, and helped me to organize my goals and make strategic plans to achieve them. Every single aspect of my life improved because of the work I did with Hanneke. It truly brought happiness to a whole new level!

H: You did my Ultimate Career Bootcamp last year. How did it help you in your job search?

L: UCB brought structure to my career planning and job search. Before I started the program, I had an idea of what I wanted to do, but that was pretty much it. Through UCB I got crystal clear about what I wanted and why – and ‘the why’ made it real for me, it anchored me to my new goals. The program took me step by step through the process, from identifying what I wanted and why, to the detailed action plan and accountability to make it my reality. When I finished UCB there were no more excuses for not living the life of my dreams because I had the plan right in front of me.

H: What’s your best advice to new working Moms?

L: My advice for new working Moms is to be gentle on yourself. Try to keep in mind that this is probably the biggest transition of your life, and it is completely natural for it to change you in a number of ways. Your priorities, your relationship, your body, your friendships, and maybe even your career goals will change, and it can all be wonderful if you’re open to it.

Also, remember you’re not alone, and you’re not the only Mom to struggle with this. Talk to other Moms. You’ll likely pick up some new mama life hacks, and you’ll feel better knowing you’re in good company. And don’t worry if the Moms you know aren’t “new Moms,” we still remember pregnancy, labor, and those first years vividly, and we’re here to sympathize with, and support you!!

H: What could your company have done to support you more?

L: There are a number of things I would have liked for my company to offer to support me as a new parent: longer maternity leave, short-term and long-term part-time schedule options, life/career coaching services, or a more flexible work schedule. The biggest problem I faced in the workplace was basic respect for being a working parent, and that can’t be immediately rectified by any special schedule or benefit services. However, providing those accommodations and services sends a strong message that the company values the parents in their workforce, and that leads to more respect throughout the workforce. It sets the tone at the top.

Now we’d love to hear from you: What was your favorite tip from Leanna? What struggles have you experienced trying to find a job that better suits you? Tell us in the comments below!!

ALSO: if you’d like to get some of the HOT tips I gave Leanna to make her successful career transition, be sure to signup for my complimentary webinar on Monday Jun 27th at 6p ET ( if you can’t make it – still signup as I’ll be sending a replay link to all registrants only!) Sign up now!


Can you really have your cake and eat it too?

In the modern world that we live in, with so many amazing opportunities, it’s so easy to overeat at the success buffet, biting off more than you can chew and then being overwhelmed and unsatisfied.

Social media shows us everyone’s wins and amazing accomplishments. In magazines we read all about how celebs have it all: looks, successful acting careers, hot husbands and kids, etc… If you’re an ambitious cookie like myself, all of this may create some internal pressure to start saying yes to any and all opportunities.

That’s normally where it all goes ‘tits up’ as my British broker friends would say. In my last blog entry with Diane Daly, I loved her honest tip: “My advice to working moms or working women who are thinking of starting/expanding their family is that you can have it all – just not all at once.”

Her advice also got me thinking about a few of my favorite topics: goals, choices, balance and of course opportunities. How do you measure the right quantities of each to bake your perfect success story?


If you’re going to have your cake and eat it too, you first need to know exactly what kind of cake you’re baking. Get crystal clear on what you want for all parts of your life: your career, friends, family, fitness, health – what are all the ingredients?


Being crystal clear on what you want will help you to stay focused on your own path and stop you from comparing yourself to others. It will also be way easier to figure out what opportunities to say yes too and which ones to let go.

Here are a few questions to help you get clear and figure out your unique life cake:

What is your definition of success?

What kind of work-life-balance are you looking for?

What are your personal and career goals?

How many hours a week do you want to devote to work, fitness, family etc?

Knowing the answer to these questions will help you seek out specific companies or career opportunities that will help you land the balance you’re looking for.

Try to get as specific as possible and take time regularly to evaluate where you are, where you want to be and adjust accordingly. Remember you can have your cake and eat it too by making choices and saying yes to opportunities that are in line with your ultimate career and life goals.

Now I’d love to hear from you: are you struggling to figure out what the right steps are to take for your career? What’s making it difficult for you? Have you cracked the code to striking the perfect balance between your life and career? Tell me your insights in the comments below. Your question/comment/answer could help someone else!

Look Ma, I am on the news!

In case you missed it last week, yours truly made the news. The whole thing was very exciting (and yes, nerve wrecking too), especially as it came literally out of no where.



Click the Play button to see it.

The entire experience made me realize that one should never give up on your dreams and ambitions. Stick to your guns, work hard, work smart and always be grateful.

I remember distinctly about 4 years ago saying to a girlfriend of mine: “You know I have this feeling that I should be doing something bigger, something that makes a difference in other’s lives, besides Pilates.” Two years ago that feeling had grown into a definite desire to empower women.

Since then there has been many times where I just wanted to pack it all in. Forget my dreams, my aspirations and just settle for an easier more stable work environment.

About a year ago sitting at South Boston Yoga before Pilates, I had a conversation that changed it all. Mary-Alice, whom many of you may know as a former manager from South Boston Yoga, and I had a random conversation about what we were doing for the weekend. She was meeting her Life Coach Trainer friend. This random conversation led to another in depth chat with my Life Coach. Before I knew it I was following my dream of making a bigger difference in other’s lives by becoming a Life Coach.

Ultimately it was this choice that inspired our brain child, Pilates with Purpose. If I didn’t have to attend a bunch of networking events to build my coaching business, I wouldn’t have connected with Kristen Scanlon, my Pilates with Purpose partner. And that means this amazing week wouldn’t have happened at all.

As I left the Fox 25 studio with Kristen on Tuesday, I was filled with so much excitement, gratitude and motivation for what’s next. I realized that everything up until that moment had prepared me to pull it together for Tuesday. The frustrating, life sucking days along with the exciting, award-winning victories, came at exactly the right time. A moment where I was able to embrace the opportunity and run with it.

In today’s action steps a few things to remember when you are running out of patience and hitting big lows are:

1) It’s hard: If you really, really want something it’s not always going to be easy to get it. You’re going to have to work harder than you ever thought you would have too or even could.
2) Relax: Even if you just have a hunch of what it is you want, but can’t put it into words just yet, don’t stress yourself out. Your sub-conscious mind is always out there working on it for you.
3) Support: if you feel stuck hire a Life Coach. Ultimately the best investment I ever made in myself. Shirley, my Life Coach, helped me become unstuck and set me on my way to where I am today.
4) Embrace: trust that everything comes at exactly the right time.
5) Evolve: Only on the day that you die will you stop growing, learning and evolving. There will be many testing times with many more amazing experiences. Accept the moment for what it is: just a moment, adapt to it and work with it.

There’s a saying: “It all works out in the end and if it hasn’t worked out, it’s not the end.” Never give up!

Everyone’s fighting a battle you know nothing about.

What I love about coaching is how much I learn from my clients and how amazing their progress really is. The stories that they bring me, their challenges, their wins and how they become more and more aware. How they implement the skills I help them uncover. How they learn to put these new skills into action in our sessions and in their lives is something truly powerful and sometimes even magical.

In today’s blog I’d like to share one of these with you. (Please note that permission to share this story was obtained beforehand. All my sessions are strictly confidential, unless otherwise authorised by the client.)


A few weeks ago when one of my clients walked in, I could physically feel the weight of what she had been through since our previous meeting enter the room with her. She had had a really rough couple of weeks. Her old, pre-life coached, self would have crumbled under everything she had to deal with. However she used all the new skills in her toolbox to beat back every curve ball that life had threw at her. One of the overwhelming events was her apartment almost burning down! This resulted in her having to lug almost all of her stuff to the dry cleaners for cleaning and storage.


On one of her many rushed trips to the laundromat the owner pulled her aside. He started to thank her and told her how she had saved his business.


Her loss had been his gain. He had had cancer a little while ago and the manager who looked after his shop ran the place into the ground. If it hadn’t been for her bringing in all her stuff he would have lost his business.


Although what had happened to my client was not pleasant, to say the least, she became more aware of the bigger picture. His words gave her the extra bit of motivation she needed to see her misfortune with new perspective. She experienced first hand how her actions had a ripple effect, even if she couldn’t see it. That doesn’t mean the experience didn’t suck, or that she had to put a happy face on it. She just started to realize how lucky she was in the grand scheme of things and how much she had to be grateful for… As my client finished her story we were both teary eyed.


ActionstepsAction Steps:

1) We often act like we are the center of the universe. And that our problems are the worst and biggest. Take a moment to notice and be kind to strangers around you, realize that just like yourself, they also have their own battles that they’re fighting.

2) Don’t take it all so personally. How strangers act and react towards you, almost always has nothing to do with you.

3) Then take another moment to reflect on everything you have that you are fortunate enough to have.


Realize that you can make or break someone’s day without even knowing you’re doing it. Always try to be the best version of yourself, you never know what impact you can have.