by Serena Argens, Rise & Shine Bright Founder & Coach
Let me begin by saying that even sitting down to write about myself is somewhat painful. I'm a fairly private person and frankly, I'm still in the process of figuring out who I am. I suspect most of us probably are. So…I will, instead, focus on sharing a bit about my background and what led me to start this journey; this community.
I come from a long lineage of service-minded individuals; it is in my DNA. My maternal surname actually translates to mean “service” or “duty”. I have grown up surrounded by those that work hard on behalf of others. Intellectuals who are extremely resourceful, often stubborn, but generally in the pursuit of helping others. My family members are Doctors, Therapists, Lieutenant Colonels, Nuns, heads of businesses, leading volunteer efforts, mothers and fathers.
"From my family I learned grit, a heightened sense of responsibility, and to care deeply for others; often at the sacrifice of oneself."
This grit led me to rise the ranks in the corporate world. Leading and enabling sales teams at rapidly growing technology companies. I shined coaching people, helping them unleash their potential, and achieve their goals. In my last position, I had many shining moments that tricked me into believing I was thriving. I was leading a team I loved. My team supported our largest and highest profile clients that spanned the globe. It was not uncommon for me to be taking meetings at all hours of the day or night in order to support our international clients. I felt needed; it was gratifying to know I was making an impact.
I was successful at work, simultaneously growing a family with my husband and school-aged daughter, but I ultimately sacrificed a lot of myself in the process. I had no real hobbies or passion, I was weighted down with responsibilities and overwhelm. As many working mom's are, I was primarily responsible for most of the domestic responsibilities; grocery shopping, cooking, cleaning, laundry, school lunches, etc. In short, I was always on, not just at work but at home.
"A constant ticker was running in my head of what needed to be done at home and at work. I was doing so much yet it never felt like enough."
In my downtime, I’d turn to social media and get a daily reminder of what I wasn’t accomplishing. I’d see the mom juggling a dozen kids, sharing her exercise routines and wonder: “How come you can’t make time for that?”. I’d see friends spending weekends hiking with their kids; “Why don’t we prioritize adventures like that?”. The couples on exciting trips abroad; “How come we aren't doing that?”. Everyone seemed to have it all figured out and be able to take on far more than I could.
Recently, I decided it was enough. This is no way of life. I was certain that if I continued at this pace, I was shaving years off of my precious life. More than anything, I was worried about what example I was setting for my daughter. I didn’t want her looking up to exhausted mommy. Exhausted mommy that is always working, then lounges on the couch every night with a glass of wine…that too easily turns into a few.
"A mommy that is out of balance; full of responsibility, empty with fulfillment."
Brené Brown recently explained when we look around at our society today, many of us are suffering. “We are untethered. We’re adrift; spiritually, emotionally, physically, cognitively. We’re adrift because the world is unfolding faster than we, as a social species, can manage. It’s unfolding in a way that drives separation, not that drives connection. We’ve confused hyper-communicating with connection.
As we are unmoored, untethered, adrift, we are desperately trying to find a port, somewhere to pull in and find safe harbor.
What we don’t understand is that port is inside of us. It is not external. The only way to find the shore right now is within us.”
"The only way to find the shore right now is within us." - Brené
So that is what I’m doing with this next chapter. I am taking a leap to make a career out of my own self-care and fulfillment while bringing others along to find that as
well. Join me in building this community that helps us all RISE and SHINE BRIGHT in life; full of passion, purpose, and fulfillment.
"Shine like the whole universe is yours." - Rumi
Thank you for joining this journey with me. - Serena