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The moment I took my life back

Ever felt like that square peg in a round hole? That was me for most of the first 20 years of my career.  It got so bad that I felt I couldn’t breathe anymore. What was once a vibrant and outgoing personality had been so dulled down I no longer recognised my reflection in the mirror.

I had changed jobs so many times… In the end I positioned myself as a ‘career contractor’ to justify my need to change roles so often. At least contracting offered me some stimulation, new challenges and more variety. To be fair, there had been a few roles here and there that captivated my interest but for one reason or another that flame would soon go out too.

Don’t get me wrong. I wasn’t unemployable. In fact, just the opposite.  I was considered a specialist in my field, therefore getting the jobs had always been easy.  I had a strong work ethic. I poured my heart and soul into my work, driven by unearthing new nuggets of insight that would change the game to drive more sales and market share, and improve profitability for the brands and categories under my remit.

But every year that went by, I just felt heavier and more and more lost. I was desperate to work out what it was that I was missing. Friday nights I would sit watching American Idol to find tears running down my cheeks. These contestants were so passionate about music, you could feel it oozing out of their every pore. They were so committed to chasing their dreams! I just wanted to feel like that too. But where to even start?

I was determined to discover the little piece of magic I was missing. I needed to find my purpose. 

In 2014, two things happened that changed the course of my life forever. Firstly, I discovered Cerries Mooney and her Archetype test which identified me as a Creator and Alchemist. In essence, the output described me as; someone with a strong imagination, observant and a creative problem solver – identifying solutions others can’t see. A non-conformist, who is genuine and passionate, pushes boundaries with a real hunger for authenticity.

Initially this threw me. While I agree, I had always had a creative urge in a craft sense, I did not see myself as someone who was creative. In my mind, ‘Creatives’ were artsy or advertising agency types. But the more I digested the information, I couldn’t deny it was describing me to a tee.

The second thing that happened, was discovering The Fascination Personality Test – the brainchild of Sally Hogshead. With the promise to grow my confidence, increase my value and live more authentically, I jumped in. What did I have to lose?  

I had taken numerous personality tests over the years but this one promised to be different. And they weren’t wrong.

Again, it highlighted my creative drive, how I ‘dislike ordinary ideas. I excel at bringing outside-the-box thinking, energy and enthusiasm for creative solutions to problems when others can’t find solutions’.

How my primary Advantage of Passion meant I was most authentic and at home when I was able to create emotional connections with others, inject creativity and operate with a sense of purpose.  What wasn’t the best and highest use of my time was doing things that required consistency, routine, and maintaining the status quo. 

The penny dropped. 

Early in my career, corporate testing had identified my ‘Analytical Reasoning’ skills in the upper percentile and the stone was cast.  I was channeled into a career path that ended up highly at odds with my soul. When I looked at the Fascination Personality matrix, and my key personality advantages of Passion, Innovation and Prestige was diametrically opposite to the types of personality attributes engaged in my day to day career functions.

Sitting behind a computer day after day, performing endless data analysis and routine reporting… was not engaging my core strengths of nurturing relationships and emotional connections, and being able to bring creative solutions and game changing insights to solve for day to day business challenges. OK, so in all fairness, my job did entail problem solving and ‘game changing insights’ was what I was known for, but without a large degree of human interaction, my soul was starved of a vital energy.  By being largely stuck drawing on aspects of my personality that were least natural to me – performing routine tasks with very little creative expression - every day felt like I was wading through quicksand. 

Enough was enough.

Thankfully my husband was super supportive and ready for me to start smiling again, so I resigned from my job and my career without a plan. I just knew I needed to find myself and discover my calling in life.

I would be lying if I said it was an easy journey. When you have spent 20 years climbing a mountain, it took a long time to find my way back down and work out which direction I needed to walk. So, while it has been a long and winding journey, I have learned a huge amount along the way.

For the first time in more than ten years, I had a new lease of life. I decided I wanted to learn more about the Fascination Advantages and the system behind it. Game changing doesn’t begin to describe it. I became the first certified Facilitator of the Fascination Personality Test in New Zealand.

In the meantime, I was also working as an independent consultant drawing on my expertise in pricing strategy. This just further heightened my awareness of the dysfunction and misunderstanding that occurs in organisations causing conflict, lack of trust and disengagement.  

This lit another fire in me as I threw myself into became what I describe as a student of leadership, modern management principles, and purpose.  Since then I have read hundreds of books and undertaken training in coaching and leadership development.

It is my goal to share many of these resources, and what I have learned along the way with hope that it can help you live a more authentic life, and purposeful leader.  

About: As a Profit Architect and coach, today Viv is focused on growing dynamic leaders and organisations that people love. Inside out. & outside in. Businesses today are run on data but what we mustn’t forget is that they are run by people and numbers are just half the story. Key to growing profitable organisations, loyal customers, and engaged teams is deeply rooted in unlocking emotional currency.


How purposeful and familiar are you with your personal leadership identity or brand? Are you stuck in the trap of emulating others that have gone before you or are you walking confidently in your own lane?  

If you want to;
  • Get uber clear on your unique talents, expertise and personal strengths
  • Understand the one personality trait that throws you off balance
  • Be clear and confident on your personal brand with your own crafted brand statement that confidently articulates your value, describes who you are, what you do and the results you deliver 
  • Unlock how to connect with people in a more authentic way
  • Lead with confidence to get the results you need

then I have an offer for you. It will cost you nothing but a little time. 

I would like to offer you a FREE personal coaching session complete with a copy of your personal Fascination® Personality profile (the test is valued at $90 NZD alone). This training in North America would cost you $497. 

If you are interested, or would like to nominate someone who would benefit from this, please email me directly at viv@thethinklink.nz to discuss.

What you will get:
  • A personal 90 minute coaching session
  • A full copy of your personal Fascinate® Advantage Profile (takes less than 5 minutes to complete) 
  • Clarity, confidence and game-changing insight.  


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