"Unleashed. Fearless. Freedom" and the tag line was "Self Love, Self Worth". Since the beginning of this year, those words have been my focus and unconscious thought. I've been draw to anything or anyone whom resonates with it. I also said I wanted to be a part or attend certain events, gatherings, conversations and etc. revolving around it.
So, last month I attended the "Mirror Mirror" event by Hustle, Honey in LA. There I meet the spirited and loving Stephanie Kwong. She was a guest speaker at the event. I was already admiring her floral dress she had on - clearly there was a undisclosed theme happening that only a very few knew about. Her smile is also quite lovely, I must add. Anyway, I eventually made my way over to her and introduced myself. Later she came to me and we chatted. She wanted to know what I was all about and I found that to be interesting. I shared with her my passion and goals. It seemed as thou a few of the things I expressed resonated with her.
During Stephanie's session, she shared with us that her biggest issue was LOVE. Love for herself and her choices in life. I smiled to myself as she continued talking because I understood why she seem to understand the space I was in. I had already decided (to myself) that Stephanie had to be one of my "Goddesses" and I only hoped that she would be opened to it. So I asked, and here we are. But first let me share with you a little more about Ms. Kwong.
Stephanie Kwong is a Certified Professional Co-Active Life Coach with a degree in Psychology from U.C. Berkeley. She trained as a hypnotherapist through the Hypnosis Motivation Institute and is the resident coach at a women’s treatment center - working with women who have borderline personality disorder. Stephanie is
experienced and skilled at creating dynamic action-oriented exercises to help people learn how to implement positive shifts in their lives. Blogging and Speaking at events is another way she shares her passion for love and encouraging people to see their goals come to life. Stephanie is currently working on a podcast to further expand her purpose in life.
Q & A
1. Were you named after anyone?
My parents thought I was going to be a boy and they had the name Stephen ready to go. When I popped out a girl, Stephen wasn't going to work, so they named me Stephanie. I'm glad they did. 2. What was your childhood dream job and/or career?
I wanted to be a marine biologist. I'm obsessed with the ocean and everything in it. I wanted to study and conserve it. I didn't end up becoming a marine biologist. To make up for it, I live right on the water.
3. What or Who inspired you?
My mom. She was abandoned in China at 5 and raised herself until she was 17. When she got to the U.S. there was still a massive amount of struggle, but through it all, she overcame. She truly is a phoenix who rose from the ashes, and lives every moment of her life from her heart.
She's shown me what it truly means to love unconditionally, to fully embody courage, compassion, grace, forgiveness, strength, gratitude and faith. She is generous. She never gives up. She is a well of wisdom. She fights for what she believes in, and always finds the light in the dark.
4. Why did you choose this new career path?
It chose me. I was working in the entertainment industry in production and raising money for independent feature films. I didn't like who I was being when in my profession. I was channeling a lot of masculine energy and felt like I was in survival mode most of the time. Ever since I was a little girl, I've always volunteered and I still do that now. At the time I made my transition, I observed what brought me joy, and I saw that it was when I was giving back. I quit working in entertainment. I set the intention that whatever I did next had to be in contribution. I looked for a job while I was figuring it out and sorted through the lens of contribution. I got a job running operations at a live in weight loss facility and after 3 months a young girl from Italy came as a client. She approached me one day and said that she felt alone in the apartment she was staying in and had gone to the store, bought food and binged and purged. She asked if I knew of someone who could stay with her and I volunteered myself. I was in a leadership program at the time. I've always been in personal growth work/study since I was in college. I got my degree in psychology from U.C. Berkeley. I told her that I would go to class and then come over. When I did, I taught her everything I was learning. After 1 week, my landlord told me I had to move out of my awesome home I had been in for 7 years. I told the girl, and she asked me to come to Italy to coach her when she left the weight loss camp. She had 2 more weeks there. So, in 2 weeks, I gave my notice at my job, packed up my home and flew to Italy with my dog to coach with this young girl. After 4 months, and her stabilizing/healing, I came back to L.A., got formally trained as a transformational life coach and started my coaching practice. I know the divine has her hands all up in there to make this happen, and I'm so grateful.
5. What has been the hardest part in pursuing your career and does being a Chinese woman play a part?
The hardest part is feeling alone and having to learn everything along the way. There's SO much to know and do to be a successful entrepreneur, and I never learned any of it before. I'm amazing at what I do as a life coach and clinical hypnotherapist, but learning all the aspects of building a business and really expanding it was tough. I am grateful for it because I've learned so much. I'm also grateful to be building a team of people now, so I can stay in my zone of genius and let others be in theirs to support me. I haven't felt any challenges in my career in being a Chinese woman. Instead, I'm grateful for what's ingrained in my culture which is a deep level of persistence, commitment and resilience. That's helped me in the moments when I've felt overwhelmed and wanted to quit.
6. What would you tell your younger self when it comes to where you are now in life?
You're enough. You can do it. Keep believing in yourself no matter what is in front of you. And have fun!
7. What do you want to be known for?
The contribution and impact I've had to support others in owning their power, loving themselves, rising higher and living their best lives.
8. What is your favorite part of being a Life Coach and building a brand of your own?
Knowing I'm making a difference. It means everything to me to witness my clients break through their limitations, be blown away by their own magic and soar in life. I also love that I get to be creative. I love all the people I get to meet, and I'm grateful for all the growth.
9. What advice would you give aspiring Life Coaches?
Do the inner work so you can really show up as your best and most highest self to support others in their transformation. Focus on being in service and 'how can I give,' and let that guide your actions.
10. What is one thing you do to keep yourself motivated?
I come back to my WHY for what I'm doing. And, I have a super inspiring community of game changers who are up to big things and when I am with them, that fires me up to keep on going.
"Do the inner work so you can really show up as your best and most highest self!"
Here is a picture of Stephanie and I at the Hustle, Honey event in LA, California.
For more info visit stephaniekwong.com