As the year came to a recent close, here are my 2021 highlights in the telegraphic form: from work adaptations to personal achievements as well as challenges and gratefulness. Catch up with you soon!

Work Transformed Further

Building on our 2020 experiences we launched our Icopilots Webschool with a few programs for startups. Our test and launch with incubators such as Genopole and Normandie Incubation got us some great feedback.

The new mentoring program launched purely online worked well even if it is a bit more challenging to create close relationships with a screen in between. Thalès AVS employees, Gene.io startups, and ADEME Innov’ intrapreneurs started well and will continue in 2022.

Continued with European Central Bank online with Rotterdam School of Management Women in Leadership program, the new format of watching a video prior to the workshop allowed for more online live interactions and my now signature guided introspection.

Female Wave of Change

Spent now a full year as part of the Female Wave Of Change circle of wisdom (formerly known as the circle of wise women) and contributed to many activities, events, and local actions to change the world.

Contributed specifically to the education pillar with a team of committed FWOC wavemakers, wise women, and ambassadors. We shared stories to inspire wavemakers, resourcefulness tips to help people get unstuck in challenging situations and showed gratefulness for teachers of all kinds: school teachers, mentors, coaches, parents, etc.

With the FWOC Netherlands team, we gathered regularly, created strong bonds to enable our group to become a safe source of support, inspiration, and learning. Together we created videos to share authentically about who we are and inspire others.

2021, Year of Collaboration

FWOC and FWOC-NL showed me the challenges and opportunities of collaborating in diversity, the importance of inclusion and helped me pinpoint my own biases in collaboration. Major growth for me.

For our Webschool, collaboration with Vivien Ruivaco was key to complementing our fantastic duo with Philippe. It serves the startups even further and really adds value to our offer.

The “Unmasked, Loved & Empowered” book adventure could not have happened in such a beautiful way without the generous help and collaboration of many whom I am ever so grateful to.

The Mishaps, Unexpected and Sadness

For our 2nd year cultivating our vegetable garden in NL, we didn’t really get anything to speak about. We could invoke, covid and the weather, but to be honest our heads were on other things and the garden didn’t get the attention it deserved. Hopefully, this year of rest will help it grow better in 2022, with the right attention from us ;o)

Many like us were deeply saddened by the death of our beloved Dianne Bevelander who has done so much for women in leadership in Universities and corporations. She has left us a legacy and we need to ensure to carry on the good work she has initiated.

My mum had two consecutive operations of the hip, so I spent over one month out of my life. I learned about caring and gained high respect for all full-time carers of this world.

Experimented with a team born out of FWOC on a project we called GRIP. I learned a lot about myself, my leadership, my enthusiasm, my dreams but also my limitations, the challenges of collaboration, and my need for balance in how I invest my energy.

We tried many food delivery apps during the year (Picnic, Hello Fresh, Albert Heijn, Crisp) and found that yes it is useful and we were happy to have these services available during these difficult times. In the end, I’m happy to choose my own vegetables in a shop, to go to a local “winkel” to get local produce, and getting out on the bike to go shopping is much healthier when I’ve spent all day at home in front of a screen.

I was sad to hear the stories of several friends who went through burnout at work. It seems that corona has put light on toxic work habits and beliefs and I hope that the pain of the many will educate the decision-makers of our corporate world.

2021 Personal Achievements & Happiness Moments

The book adventure which started a year ago has reached its final stages of creation and we are ready to send the final version to the printer. With the holiday period and a final technical decision about the printing technique of the cover (so glad Jennifer is there to help me as I don’t fully understand it all), looks like the book will be on the printing press in mid-January.

Spent a week in the forest in the Cévennes for a solo retreat with the guidance of Marta. It was a summer solstice pivotal moment for me. Don’t expect yet the story to be in my book as it is still unfolding.

We got a sphinx cat called Maze and she has transformed our lives. I like the grounding effect she has on me and love her unique and very affectionate personality.

Started to sew my own clothes. Amongst my personal achievements, there are a few long tartan skirts (all I wear these days), summer linen pants, and several pajamas. Not quite ready for fashion shows ;o)

Attended the compassion course from the Compassion Institute led by Thupten Jinpa, I learned to pay more attention to my intention and try to embody compassion in every circumstance, while still being self-compassionate when I don’t succeed.

Managed one short trip abroad with Philippe, yay! To eat the autumn menu at Noma 😋 this time we shared this beautiful experience with friends.

And lastly, here are a few people I would like to thank as they have very positively impacted my 2021: