Karen Liebenguth is a life coach, facilitator and mindfulness trainer with a love of the outdoors.
She firmly believes that it is in nature where insight, change and creativity can happen most naturally which is why she likes to coach in a park or nature reserve. Karen works with private and corporate individuals and teams, third sector organisations and community groups.
Tell us a bit about yourself, background and your current role
A large part of my first career was spent working in film translation in Germany and France and subsequently I headed up a team at an international subtitling and dubbing company in London (2001 -2004). In 2004 I decided to take some time out to do some conservation voluntary work in Zambia, Africa.
On my return from Zambia, I decided to finish my coaching and mindfulness training and to combine my passion for people and nature by working for an environmental charity in Organisational Development. Until 2014 I split my time between this job and developing my own business, Green Space Coaching & Mindfulness, which today is my own full-time and thriving livelihood.
I have been a practicing Buddhist since 2008. Meditation and mindfulness practice have influenced my life and work in a profound and meaningful way.
Earlier this year I took part in a three-month mindfulness and meditation retreat in Spain for my spiritual and professional development.
Did you ever sit down and plan your career?
No, never. It developed organically. First I started to train as a coach to learn new skills to manage myself and my team better while I was still working in the corporate world. The experience of coaching was very powerful and life changing. It was what inspired me to help others make positive changes to their lives.
Have you faced any particular challenges along the way and if so, how did you deal with them?
My fear of being rejected when I tell my clients how much I charge! I have worked on this and other fears with my own coach. I have learned to listen to my fears, to feel my fears and to change the story of my fears which I find helps me manage them.
If you could change one thing for women in the workplace, what would it be?
To be human and to truly love themselves. Women need to appreciate and acknowledge their qualities, skills and talents as well as their shortcomings. Doing this will help them to reach their full potential.
How do you feel about mentoring? Have you mentored anyone or are you someone’s mentee?
Mentoring is very powerful and hugely satisfying. I feel very grateful to all the coaches and teachers that have helped and inspired me over the years. Yes, I was a mentor for a few years as part of the Aspire Foundation – Trailblazing Women, inspiring women and girls http://www.aspirewomen.co.uk/. I also often mentor junior coaches who are at the beginning of their coaching practice and can benefit from what I’ve learned along the way.
What has been your biggest achievement to date?
Developing a successful business and daring to be different by offering something that is not mainstream and believing in it.
What is your next challenge and what are you hoping to achieve in the future?
I want to say YES to public speaking opportunities.
Time and space are what I value most so looking forward it would be nice to be able to work three days a week and have two months off every year!