Podcast – Cheryl Chapman – the Next Prime Minister!
This week I was interviewed by Dene Stuart, on his podcast The Thinking Revolution. I have known Dene since I coached him in the delights of public speaking, which he is clearly putting to great use on his brilliant Podcast.
Dene has a lovely format for his podcasts, a bit like Desert Island Discs combined with pointed questions which take the interviewee through the key points in their life journey to date.
And one of the memories that Dene prompted was about a schoolteacher who said about me, “I don’t know why Cheryl doubts herself, she could be the next prime minister”. Not a job I ever fancied to be fair!
My first piece of music was a Donny Osmond – who I loved at school.
People are always a bit surprised to find out what subjects I did at A level – English Language and Literature (I’m a bit potty-mouthed), Theology (cos my Mum was a Sunday School Teacher) and Home Economics’ (I never cook lol).
What I did learn was the Osmonds had a tribe of raving fans. When I got to my mid-teens it wasn’t cool to follow Donny, so I swopped allegiance to The Jam – so I was a mod. It was also my introduction to entrepreneurship because I wanted to go to gigs, and I had no money. I worked out if I could organise a bus trip, with a teacher to come along, I could work it in that I paid for my ticket, and a T-shirt and a program.
I became quite popular in school as a result. I was also in charge of the tuck shop – which taught me you don’t have to have all this stock – you just have to have in what people actually want to buy. My bestie at the time was Marianne (ironic – bestie now is Marion!).
I learned from her that you don’t have to work hard to earn money – as Marianne was one of those people who didn’t seem to have to work hard at all. Whereas I studied very, very hard. But I still had this poor relationship with money. Everything seemed to be hard where money was concerned. Rich people were bad, greedy. And that poor relationship with money carried on through my early and mid-adulthood leading to a repeating pattern of self-destructive behaviour and dysfunctional relationships.
Dene asked me what I did to come out of a dark place – a poor relationship. I wasn’t sure what to do, so in my mid 30’s I moved back home to my Mums with my dog! There was no point staying as it was never going to work. My Mum was working at a recruitment agency at the time and she sent me for an interview – just to keep her client happy.
When I got there, I got the job! It was all about bathmats! I was responsible for 40 + women making the bathmats. I learned – quickly – how you can’t please all the people all the time. And I got promoted and then moved into sales. And the money started to come in. As often happens – it was because I had dropped all expectations. Because when you chase money – it runs away from you.
I also met my current husband during this time. It was also around this time that I also met Andy Harrington, and something he said shook me out of my rut. You see, I thought I was doing ok, but I was spending money on clothes, shoes, holidays, make-up, jewelry – anythhing to distract from the fact that I wasn’t actually happy. I was stuck.
At the time the term personal development had bad connotations for me, (think positive and everything will be fine), but I meeting Andy and the team around him, I started to understand that personal development for me was realising that the common denominator in the problems I had to date was me. And perhaps if I could change me, I could change my life. My piece of music that represented this time of my life is Shirley Bassey – Hey Big Spender.
The big thing that I learned how to accept at this time of my life was that being vulnerable is a strength and not the weakness that I had always thought it was previously. I also was able to uncover where the ‘I’m not good enough’ feelings had developed – at 5 years old of course. Most adult issues are a result of childhood ‘traumas’.
Since then, so much has happened, we have created the Live Love Laugh Lounge where the WHYs women hang out. We help women to Find Their WHY. I have multiple streams of income, am helping people throughout the world, living in an amazing home where we hold retreats and hold the space for women to be who they came here to be.
Listen to the podcast here if you have a few minutes, and if finding your why and who you are meant to be is important for you then listen to the last piece of music!